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Looking for a sound engineer? Mark will strive to get the perfect sound for every client. - If you're not happy, neither is he.
Built from an ever growing clientele, MA Small Productions have put on shows for over two years in and around Fife. - Anywhere and everywhere.
Care to sound check? - We use the highest quality equipment, coupled with finely tuned ears to grant each artist a strong foundation from the room alone.

Seven Songs from Seven Sons.

Written by Super User. Posted in News

Seven Songs from Seven Sons

 

My latest project, which has just recently been completed, is a studio recording with a 6 piece Contemporary Folk/Bluegrass band Seven Sons. They comprise of 2 female vocalists Ruth Alexander and Clayr Borthwick, who also play ukuleles,  Alan Finn on double bass,  Bill Rennie on dobro, Barry Nisbet on fiddle and  George Stott on acoustic guitar.

 The girls had only been performing and writing together for a couple of years or so before they contacted me, and the present line up had only been together a matter of weeks. They had never recorded as a band before and the girls had never been in a studio. They had heard a previous live recording I had produced, and were keen to do an as live performance in a studio environment.

 

I researched Bluegrass recordings considerably before the session as I was keen to keep to the roots of traditional Bluegrass. Most vintage recordings were captured using only 1 mic, with each performer stepping up to the mic for solos. I would use a somewhat bastardised version of this technique, to capture the vocals in the studio.

 

Seven Sons #1

On the day I went with a main mic for the vocal and ukuleles. The ukes had no pickups, so no Di’s could be used. The polar pattern of the 87 was set to fig 8 with the rear of the mic pointing at the floor, this was done to try to focus the mic on the vocal and not pick up so much of the ukes. I had the band set up in a semi-circle, with the double bass boxed in using panels, to minimise spill. Each instrument was mic’d up. I also had a spaced pair of 87s, approx. 1.5 meters either side of the main mic to pick up the room and reinforce the main vocal mic.   

Seven Sons #2

The girls in particular were very nervous, as expected. I kept the atmosphere in the studio relaxed and they grew more confident as the session progressed. We would finish the day with excellent takes of seven songs. 

 

Mixing would then take place at my home studio over the following months.

https://soundcloud.com/markasmall/seven-sons-goodnight

 

https://www.facebook.com/sevensonsmusic

The Fire and I

Written by Super User. Posted in News


 

I first met Gordon and Hooligan at The Big Stooshie in 2012. I saw their set on the Saturday evening and knew I had to work with them. They have a sound unlike anything you’ve ever heard, their raw energy pulsates throughout every song, I had never seen anything quite like it.

I sat down with the guys backstage and spoke to them over a beer about their music and plans for the future. They said they wanted to capture the energy of their live performance in the next album they were planning.

After speaking to Gordon 6 months later, when II called him to inquire if they were available to play at a show I was putting on, he said they were looking for somewhere to record the instrumentation for their second album. Fortunately, I had access to the studios at the then Adam Smith College.

I booked the studio for the following week and the magic happened………….

In the Studio

 

The boys put down all the instrumentation for 14 songs in one 12 hour session, everything clicked, an amazing experience to be a part of. 

The Studio 2

 

Gordon then took the recordings back to Bathgate, where he chose what takes to use and overdubbed the vocals. I had the boys at my own place in Cupar, with my friend and colleague Jack on a few occasions, for more recording and all weekend mixing sessions……. Well until the beer arrived!

 

 

 

I’ve worked with the guys on live shows and recordings since the album was wrapped and we’re now all good friends. The album is a work of art, it’s the closest you can come to experiencing them live without going to a show.

Check them out on You Tube, like them on Facebook, or best of all go see them live and buy their records…………

It’ll change your life!!!

 

Thefireandi.bigcartel.com

 

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