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THE STUDIO TECHNOLOGY AND INSTRUMENTS USED IN RECORDING AND PRODUCING

1. RECORDING TECHNOLOGY- AN INTRODUCTION

Instruments such as telephone, phonograph and radio were the three sound mechanisms invented during the Electric Revolution that enabled sound to be split from its source and reach people far and wide. The telephone enabled two parties to talk and listen to each other irrespective of the distance. Phonograph recorded and preserved the sound. Radio enabled sounds to be heard by people far and wide.

Brian Eno, an innovative producer and a former member of Roxy Music, gives a very thought-provoking example of the significance of recording when he comments that music as opposed to being an event that is perceived at a given situation disappears after it gets finished (confined by time). However, recording actually makes the listener listen to the music again and again thereby drawing several sounds and interpretations when listened at different times (a spatial experience). He goes on further to remark that the effect of a tape recorder really put the music in a spatial dimension, making it possible to squeeze the music or expand it.

The stereo mix of 'She's Leaving Home' was mixed at a slower speed than the original recording. 'Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds' is not just slower than the actual recording but features much heavier gating and reverb effects. On 'Good Morning, Good Morning', the guitar noise is timed differently and a crowd tape noise comes in later during the intro into the title track- 'Sgt. Pepper (Reprise)'. There were some songs which were made during the sessions of 'Sgt. Pepper' but were not included on the actual album. One of them is John Lennon's 'Strawberry Fields Forever' which was originally a combination of two different songs that was mastered and engineered by the producer George Martin. It consisted of tape-reversed hi-hat on the verses, ringing tom-toms, double-time timpani and bongos on the later choruses (MacDonald, 1998).

This album saw the Beatles progressing to an unimaginable level. They changed the face of popular music in 1962 but by the time this album came out they created a landmark in musical history. It was as if The Beatles were stepping out of monochrome or black and white into colour: kaleidoscopic ideas, imagery, clothes, films and music. It was psychedelic in the true sense of the word (Lewisohn, 1992).

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