Les Paul and Mary Ford

Discussion on new albums, developing listening skills, critical listening to others' work, as well as TOMB members' MP3 links, online recording critiques

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george martin
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Les Paul and Mary Ford

Post by AstroDan » Sat Jul 14, 2007 12:10 pm

Did anyone see that American Experiences episode on PBS the other night covering their career? Everyone is familiar with Les' contribution to music in the 20th century - but I was blown away by how great their records sounded.

Most of the stuff was done at home on his invented multitrack, singing in the kitchen, basement, etc...but the quality of the recordings are what stuck out to me. We all hate adjectives - but 'clear' and 'rich' are what come to mind. Just the tone of the mics and preamps going to whatever tape were impeccable. The guy was really an accomplished tone-smith/producer as well as innovator.

I was just surprised that these records done over 50 years ago had a tonal quality I personally haven't heard matched since. Obviously, there have been good recordings made since, but I'm re-evaluating my take on the apex of recording (which to me was late 60's early 70') and believing they were these Les Paul and Mary Ford records a half century ago.
"I have always tried to present myself as the type of person who enjoys watching dudes fight other dudes with iron claws."

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gettin' sounds
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Post by spectralgrey » Sat Jul 14, 2007 3:09 pm

That documentary was awesome. Totally eye-opening. A lot of us are doing the home recording thing these days, finding the best parts of our homes to get certain kinds of sounds like using the bathroom for reverb and all that. He was doing it all 50 years ago and it sounds killer.

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Post by bed eternity » Sun Jul 15, 2007 10:21 am

i also caught that on tv. i noticed the quality of the recordings also and thought that there was probably some re-mastering that had been done. oh yea, and les paul still plays weekly in new york.

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Post by Seej » Fri Aug 10, 2007 11:54 am

great docu. i remember reading in his tapeop interview that all of the hits werent made on the 8track, but on the sound-on-sound recorder.
"You can have a crappy drum set and still be a good drummer. And then you can have a $15,000 drum set with all these drums and the drummer's crap."-Mike Gibbins (1949-2005)


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