Sara Kay – On the Way
“Bill has the experience, professionalism, equipment, software, and friendliness that make the recording and mastering process a joy. I’m a big fan of Euphonic Studio and would suggest it to anyone.” – Sara Kay
A former student’s mom recommended Euphonic Studio to Sara Kay and Brian (thanks, Kristine!) as a place to have their CD mastered. As we exchanged emails and our discussions about mastering became more detailed, I began to get a bit nervous, especially when I started shopping for mastering houses online and saw what they charge. “I wonder what they could be doing for that kind of money?”, I thought.
So, when I took the job I gave them a not-to-exceed number for a price because I knew there was going to be a learning curve involved. The learning curve was steep, I had to gear up to produce Red Book CDs, (more on that on another page) and of course the most important part is learning how to listen and hear.
It’s a good thing they are patient people. I think I spent about 3 months putting myself through Mastering School 101, and although I am not some hotshot guy from LA or NYC, I now know some of the basic ideas and hopefully how to implement them. I definitely learned a lot about my hardware/software because I explored a lot of places and combinations that I hadn’t tried before. Now I know what actually works.
You can read about Sara Kay’s life on her CD Baby page at this link
Sara Kay has created a collection of songs which in some ways reminds me of a modern Catholic mass. Part of my process in coming up to speed with mastering these was listening. A BIG LOT of listening. I would read commentary and hints from world famous mastering engineers, try to apply them, then create mastered songs for next morning’s listening session. I had morning comparative listening sessions every morning for a month or more.
But despite having to analyze these songs for the best sounding recording, they always sounded fresh, with vigor, with a faint bittersweet twist that is not often heard in this genre. And the music still stays fresh with me today having heard it dozens or maybe hundreds of times trying to dissect it aurally.
I could not think of a better project for my first master. You should buy this CD, and the samples here will hopefully motivate you to do just that.
Of Lament and Hope (Psalm 13)
Prayer for Healing
On a personal note, I was trying to work on this the day our city experienced the 3rd tragedy of its type this spring. When number 3, Of Lament and Hope, came up, I will admit that I wept at how beautiful and appropriate it was.