This month I’ve been spending quite a lot of time in beautiful recording studios. First it was a day at Le Fresnoy in Lille doing voice recording for a film by Anouk De Clercq with music by Scanner, then my viols and I spent a week at Greenhouse Studios in Reykjavik working with Valgeir Sigurðsson, and now I’m at MotorMusic in Mechelen for 3 days of recording an opera with Shara Worden and the Belgian Baroque collective BOX. Studios are the best. I’m learning all about microphones and ProTools and headphone monitors, etc. It’s been quite an eye-opening experience, making music happen in a lot of different ways, involving various intersections of technological and historical techniques. There are lots of thoughts swimming around in my head about performance, communication, anxiety, focus and achieving the elusive “zone”.
Doing the voice recording was particularly fascinating because it was the same work process as recording music, i.e. doing multiple takes and trying to improve things, but with none of my stupid emotional baggage about my playing. Trying to transfer that mindset to a recording session of hard viol music is difficult, but there might be a way. In any case, I’m getting really into this recording stuff and am planning to do a lot more. So watch this space.