Sunday
May012005

« Hog Heaven II »

The old studio used to be on the other side of this wall where the control area isWell it seems all is not lost afterall. Hog Heaven has a new lease on life, so it seems. The old room and the wall it used to hide behind in my carport/garage has been obliterated and hardly any of it remains even evidence that there was once a studio there. There is a pile of drywall, studs, and other junk sitting where my drums used to sit.

A few years ago I would have been pissed out of my mind that the studio was gone. I sort of wanted to be pissed as hell, but with the old man, it never seems to do much good. Besides, he was the one who fucked it up anyway, and he had to take all this illegal construction shit down. He had always promised me the studio space would be contingent on real flimsy circumstances he himself would put in place. Namely, it was supposedly built to serve my needs as long as my grandmother was alive. Well, this particular week is four years since she died, so I reckon I got a four year extension on my lease.

So much more spacious in here!The room was always total ass when it came to ventilation (none), sonic aptitude (none), and aesthetic beauty (only good if you like pigs, really). There had been times when I WAYYYYYYY overshot the carrying capacity of the room, and while it was nice for one person, the times when I had a trio or quartet in there all playing at once, it was just a total endurance test.

The week or so when the place got emptied out I just brought stuff in the house and set it aside, not knowing what to do but to pile shit in the closet. But then Kelli and I got the unrented room to ourselves, so we got to set up her little office/workspace in there, and she gave up the big remodeled room (formerly garage, but always a big room to me). I got to thinking, that if I could get that space, I could at least put together the stuff I know I can use, and sneak my way back into using it for more and more stuff. So I set out to basically rebuild my entire studio in the big room. It's a nice step up. The old room was an absolute square of 11' dimensions, and this is 15'x17', with nice French doors, shelved cabinets, and a closet. It has fake hardwood floors, and it looks a hell of a lot nicer. There's a couch too. I have enough space to be more liberal with the arrangement. I have the monitors spaced over a foot from the wall (unheard of in the little room). The drums are up just beside and behind where I sit in the center of the room. The electric piano is off to the right, the rack to the left. The guitar amp sits left of that, and the iso cabinet is tucked into a corner and buried with a gobo and tons of blankets, all with a mic on the speakers. Behind the drums, I put up my big 2x4 stud-with-guitar-hooks for six guitars. The only thing that bugs me is that with almost NO storage space in the house, I can't really keep my drum bags, guitar bags and cases, and other leftover stuff anywhere but in the main room, so I still get clutter. But the functionality is great.

Glenn and I set up the place about two weeks ago and we got to find out that even the drums were fairly well contained in this room. It isn't as leakproof as the other room was, but it isn't too bad at all if I stick to my usual habits. The drums are wide open and ringy, and with the room's hard walls and floor, the kit explodes. The space allows me to be more creative with mic'ing the kit and the room. The overall space is greater, so I don't get such obvious and dreadful acoustical mess with reflections and standing waves when I am monitoring. I wish I could get the speakers spread out by about 18" more, and sit further back. If I get bold, I might try to do some full band jam stuff to see if I can get away with it. Even if not, I can still record a good sized group with direct feeds, and live drums. I still have the channel count and headphone distro to get a lot of people in on one recording, if need be.

So this was a pleasant surprise. I didn't really think it would come this far, but on the last three weekends, Glenn and I have been getting it together and making some shit happen. This is cool. Of course, my rates are going up now. (That means Tim Robertson has to pay more, bastard.)

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