Francois Eckert interview (Part 2 of 2) [Listen 40:30 min]- Listening To Intelligent Music With Francois Eckert And His Girlfriend S03 Ep07
Special Guests: (Audio) Francois Eckert (Artistic Director and Tonmeister) (Part 2 of 2): is a Tonmeister (a recording master) who is responsible for that title of the best sounding recording album in my collection or any of my friends' collections. A recording that not only has captured phenomenal music (the Arditti String Quartet playing a variety of 20thCentury composers), but a perfect recording that truly sounds as if the Arditti String Quartet is in your room giving a private performance. François Eckert has worked with all the greats in classical music with composers like Luciano Berio, Karlheinz Stockhausen, and György Ligeti, and conductors like Pierre Boulez, and Daniel Barenboim, and the list of talented people could go on and on.
In this podcast we talk about some of the difficulties recording specific instruments, recording Debussy, being nominated for a Grammy for his recording with Monica Haggott, his opinion on having the composer in the room when recording, and where 20th Century is today...and much much more
Find out more information HERE
Getting Technical with François Eckert
I was really curious about some of the equipment that someone of Francois Eskert’s station would use today in the studio. To my surprise, he sent me an email listing all the equipment and software that he uses with a brief description of it. It's so impressive that I thought it would make a great blog entry as well as a great read for audiophile fans and studio engineers.
- I use Pyramix as a recording and editing system, and Altiverb, Renovator (from Algorithmix) Flux (Alchemist, EQ) and Sonnox (Eq and Limiter) as plug ins. Preamp Ads are the wonderful DAD AX24 (Danish Audio Digital). I have bought recently a small digital recorder (6/2, but can be expanded) from us manufacturer Zaxcom called Nomad. Great stuff, no computer any more on site !
-Mikes : As main mikes, I use 2 very different sorts of mikes : DPA4006 (I have 2 4006A and 2 4006TL), and/or tlm 50s from Neumann, sometimes mk21 (schoeps) if the room is too reverberant for omni use. Spots and other mikes : Schoeps (mk21, mk8), neumann km140 (I love this mike as an all purpose spot mike).
St John's Passion with Portland Baroque Orchestra and Monica Huggett (Recording March 2011) :
- Well, first of all this piece is so great.... Just the entrance choir, some of the greatest. So I was extremely lucky when Monica asked me to record it. And when I was told that all the musicians would have a couple of days rehearsal, 3 concerts in Portland, then 6 days recording, and later on 2 concerts in Canada, that they would all be in Portland all the time, I thought : well, maybe there is something unusual and promising we could do. In fact, usually an oratorio or an opera is recorded like a movie film, in a lot of sequences :
- You put all choirs together, all recits, the Evangelist, the chorals, the arias, and record in order to keep costs down as much as possible. So you'll have the evangelist day, where he sings all he has, even when it's just 2 words then the choir day'(s), chorals, all the bars with choir the recit's day, etc...
All is recorded completely out of context, which makes it very difficult to record with musical feelings. (except for the arias who are not part of the "action", like I called it). So what did I suggest:
For the bits called by me "action", where the story is told, to have everyone on stage, and to record, as much as possible the "story" in order. So everyone would understand what it is about, and play and sing accordingly. And that's what we did, and that's one of the reasons why I think this recording sounds almost like live (a concert), but produced with the quality of a studio recording. And I love it... That's it !
Andrea Bocelli and Francois Eckert interview (Part 1 of 2) [Listen 41:22 min]- Getting Real Music Lessons With Francois Eckert S03 Ep07
Special Guest: (Written) Andrea Bocelli (Part 1 of 1): is an Italian tenor with outstanding talent and renown. He has sold over 80 Million records worldwide (making him the biggest-selling classical soloist of all time). He started his career off by winning Best Newcomer in the singing competition for the Sanremo Music Festival in 2004 and has gone on to win Grammys, Golden Globes, and was even nominated for an Academy Award. His musical style ranges a wide spectrum from opera to pop (singing with artists as diverse as Celine Dion, Mary J. Blige, and David Foster). Bocelli's Sacred Arias became the biggest-selling classical album by a solo artist of all time with over 20 million copies sold worldwide. I am undeniably honored to have been granted this interview with Bocelli, and this interview reveals his warm character and his generosity towards supporting the arts.
Special Guests: (Audio) Francois Eckert (Artistic Director and Tonmeister) (Part 1 of 2): is a Tonmeister (a recording master) who is responsible for that title of the best sounding recording album in my collection or any of my friends' collections. A recording that not only has captured phenomenal music (the Arditti String Quartet playing a variety of 20th Century composers), but a perfect recording that truly sounds as if the Arditti String Quartet is in your room giving a private performance. François Eckert has worked with all the greats in classical music with composers like Luciano Berio, Karlheinz Stockhausen, and György Ligeti, and conductors like Pierre Boulez, and Daniel Barenboim, and the list of talented people could go on and on.
In this podcast we talk about what a Tonmeister is, what his take is on the Vinyl verses Digital debate, some of the technical aspects of his career like mic placement and room acoustics, surround sound and much much more.
You can find out more about Mr Eckart and the record label La Dolce Volta - HERE
Andrea Bocelli Talks With Going Thru Vinyl
Going Thru Vinyl (GTV) - Italy, or more specifically the city of Florence (the capital of Tuscany), is undeniably the most historically important city in the world when it comes to opera. Not only was Florence the fertile soil for a cultural shift away from the sacred to the humanist thought (the birthplace of the Renaissance) but Florence is also the city that opera itself was invented.1
You grew up in the Tuscany region; what influence has Tuscany and its history had on you and your style. Did this prepare you later in life?
Andrea Bocelli - I don’t think Tuscany has influenced my career: it rather influenced my character, my mood, my sensitivity. Regarding the rest, I think everything was born with me, according to God’s plans.
GTV - Although you are one of the most recognized and respected opera singers today (having sung for prominent figures in society, headlined in the most historical opera houses, and having sold over 75 million albums around the world), you are in fact part of a long and profound history of opera singers. But history is too easily forgotten and people of the past are relegated to the shadows, can you say a word or two about some of the prominent singers of the past.
Giacomo Lauri-Volpi (December 11, 1892–March 17, 1979) – was a widely recorded and much celebrated Italian tenor who was a key member during the early days of recording. Although you did not work directly under him, you came from that school. One of Lauri-Volpi’s biggest admirers was Franco Corelli, and from Corelli you received private lessons. I’m wondering if Giacomo Lauri-Volpi came up in conversation and if his singing style has influenced yours.
Andrea Bocelli - Not really, but I always loved the great vibration of his voice and also the projection of it. Corelli used to say that his voice was one of the few that in theatre could reach the gallery…
GTV - Franco Corelli (8 April 1921 – 29 October 2003) – was a famous Italian tenor who was celebrated for his spinto tenor voice, for his movie-star good looks, and later in his career for his ability to teach. He was someone you took direct teaching lessons from. How would you describe his singing style and his influence in you?
Andrea Bocelli - I loved the great voices which I learned to recognize and distinguish very early on, but undoubtedly the voice of Franco Corelli was the one which struck and influenced me more than any other. I am almost sure that without Corelli there would never have been Bocelli.
GTV - Luciano Pavarotti (12 October 1935 – 6 September 2007) – probably the most famous tenor of the second half of the 20th century, and spearheaded opera’s contemporary success to a wider audience. Pavarotti was also a significant figure on the road to your success. What was your favorite role of his in opera?
Andrea Bocelli - Maestro Pavarotti deserves a special place in the history of the music of our time and to have worked alongside him has been an enormous and unforgettable privilege. The chance to work with important people such as those you mention, makes the life of an artist interesting and stimulating, which compensates for the hard graft with the constant travel and all the daily practice which a professional singer has to do to maintain peak efficiency.
1 Opera was said to have been invented in Florence (the capital of Tuscany) by Jacopo Peri (20 August 1561 – 12 August 1633) -a composer and singer who studied with Cristofano Malvezzi and was hired by the Medici family during transitional period in music (between Late-Renaissance and Early-Baroque periods). In 1590s, Peri became associated with Jacopo Corsi (a person who encouraged Peri and the poet Ottavio Rinuccini to experiment in both drama and music; using the frame work of the classical Greek tragedy). The first known standard composition to be considered opera, begun in 1594, was called “Dafne;” a story about Apollo falling in love with the nymph, Daphne. Today, only fragments of the opera survive.