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Al Schmitt on Vocal and Instrumental Recording Techniques


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Table of Contents

1. VOCAL MIC CHOICE First Playback with Musicians in the Control Room Choosing the Vocal Mic 2. VOCALIST, STYLE, AND LEAKAGE Microphone Technique Getting to Know the Artist 3. THE RECORDING SPACE Sight Lines Setting the Mics to Omni 4. SETTING UP THE BAND Unfamiliar Instruments Making Them Happy Miking a Male Vocalist Miking a Female Vocalist Miking Background Vocalists Miking a Choir Duets Choosing a Preamp for Vocals 5. RECORDING THE RHYTHM SECTION Recording Drums Acoustic Bass Electric Bass Piano Upright Piano Harpsichord Acoustic Guitar Electric Guitar 6. RECORDING WOODWINDS, BRASS, AND STRINGS Saxophone Brass Strings 7. AL'S TOOL CHEST Microphones Preamps and EQs Compressors

About the Author

AL SCHMITT (Los Angeles, California) has been in recording studios since he was seven years old, starting in his uncle s recording studio in New York City. At nineteen, after serving in the U.S. Navy, Schmitt got his first engineering job at Apex studio in New York working with his mentor, engineer Tommy Dowd. He was responsible for recording simple demos, but that changed when a presumed demo booked under the name, Mercer, turned out to be Duke Ellington and his band. Schmitt went on to record sessions for Atlantic Records, Prestige Records, and Bobby Shad s Sittin In Records. Schmitt loves producing and engineering and has been privileged to work with the best and the brightest in the recording industry, including Frank Sinatra, Barbra Streisand, Neil Young, Bob Dylan, Usher and Dr. Dre, to name a few. During his career, he has recorded and mixed over 150 gold and platinum records and has gone on to receive a total of 20 GRAMMY wins and 2 Latin Grammy awards for engineering albums by such artists as Steely Dan, Toto, Natalie Cole, Quincy Jones, Diana Krall, Luis Miguel, Ray Charles, Chick Corea, DeeDee Bridgewater, and finally, Paul McCartney (in 2013, his most recent Grammy win).

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