History of CBS Records 30th Street Studio NYC (many pictures)

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by DMortensen, Oct 21, 2014.

  1. jamo spingal

    jamo spingal Active Member

    Location:
    Edinburgh
    Kind of trying to follow the thread, quite a bit of Bernstein's theatre music in the list, I have all of these and now can picture the recordings - Candide, Peter Pan (some tracks), Wonderful Town, On the Town, West Side Story.
     
  2. W.B.

    W.B. Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    That reminds me of a story Jimmy Bowen related in his Rough Mix memoir about producing Bing Crosby's Hey Jude / Hey Bing! album for his (Bowen's) own Amos label - and how Der Bingle had a habit of having his hands in his pants pockets while recording his vocals - and on some takes the change was jangling from a faraway distance. Naturally Crosby had to take his change out . . . but that's for another thread (although Der Bingle did record on and off for Columbia after the '50's, for the purposes of the 30th Street studio's long and storied history).
     
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  3. lukpac

    lukpac Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
  4. lukpac

    lukpac Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
  5. Steve Conti

    Steve Conti New Member

    Location:
    Providence RI
    Is it possible it's one of the studios at 799 7th Ave? I know it's been talked about that he recorded there in Sessions with Sinatra. Maybe Radio Recorders if it's a west coast pic? Some of the great big band recordings by Benny Goodman, Harry James, and Woody Herman were done at Liederkranz and had a very distinctive sound
     
  6. lukpac

    lukpac Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    Hit post before I wanted to with the last post. More:

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    CIRCA 1962: Composer Duke Ellington records in the studio in circa 1962. (Photo by Herb Snitzer/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)

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    CIRCA 1962: Composer Duke Ellington records in the studio in circa 1962. (Photo by Herb Snitzer/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)

    [​IMG]
    CIRCA 1965: Composer Duke Ellington recording in the studio in circa 1965. (Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)

    I'll post a couple random shots from Liederkranz. They don't really help with anything, as far as I can tell, but they sure look different from the later photos.

    [​IMG]
    NEW YORK - OCTOBER 1: Bernard Herrmann, conductor with the Columbia Studio Orchestra, in Liederkranz Hall Building. New York, NY. Image dated October 1, 1938. (Photo by CBS via Getty Images)

    [​IMG]
    NEW YORK - OCTOBER 1: Bernard Herrmann, conductor with the Columbia Studio Orchestra, in Liederkranz Hall Building. New York, NY. Image dated October 1, 1938. (Photo by CBS via Getty Images)

    Neither 799 Seventh Ave or Radio Recorders. Both of those were built as studio complexes, while the mystery photos are from some sort of hall converted for recording.
     
  7. MLutthans

    MLutthans That's my spaghetti, Chewbacca! Staff

    Location:
    Marysville, WA
    The ban also came at an opportune time for Capitol Records on the west coast, as they opened their new facility (the Melrose studio, formerly KHJ radio) in 1948. According to John Palladino, who was on staff for the opening, moving over to Capitol's new digs from Radio Recorders, he never recorded on tape at Radio Recorders, and never recorded to disk at Capitol, due to the gap that resulted from the strike.
     
  8. MLutthans

    MLutthans That's my spaghetti, Chewbacca! Staff

    Location:
    Marysville, WA
    Because we have been drifting more and more into Liederkranz Hall discussion, I've moved 80 Liederkranz-centric posts from this thread to a new thread dedicated to Liederkranz. You can find that here: History of Liederkranz Hall (RCA, CBS)

    I only moved posts that were entirely about Liederkranz. For posts that "touched on Liederkranz" within a 30th Street discussion, I added those Liederkranz passages in the new thread by merely quoting them within new posts, while leaving them fully intact here in the 30th St. thread.

    If you see any problems with what got copied vs. what got moved, please send me a private message, and I will take care of it.

    In the meanwhile, let's continue the ongoing Liederkranz discussion here: History of Liederkranz Hall (RCA, CBS)

    ....while keeping this thread on-track with 30th Street discussion. Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2017
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  9. DMortensen

    DMortensen Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Seattle, WA USA
    Matt, this was a good call to start a new thread. People looking for Liederkranz Hall info would not necessarily know to come to the 30th St thread.

    I think you should have made yourself the OP on that thread, though. You are much more of an expert than I am. You have my permission to change that, and maybe have an initial post that says what we know about it and collects all video links. That last one you posted was terrific. It's quite a coincidence how those kids were hanging around the alley behind Lexington or 58th right when Frank had a break....

    That link that Luke posted to the Eyes of a Generation/CBS TV site should be in the new OP, too. That is a remarkable site full of interesting info.
     
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  10. MLutthans

    MLutthans That's my spaghetti, Chewbacca! Staff

    Location:
    Marysville, WA
    Sorry, the order in which the posts appear is dictated (and, to my knowledge, cannot be altered) by their date/time stamp, so the oldest post I moved became the default OP in the new thread, based on its original post time.
     
  11. silvertone

    silvertone New Member

    Hi Dan,

    I know it's probably been discussed but the console from the 60's and the three track Ampex 300-3, does anyone know how the signal flow went? The board originally in the 50's was a 12x3 correct?

    Back then the preamp modules had to physically be strapped to be either a mic pre, line and or phono amp. Obviously with 6 Neumann M49's at least 6 channels were mic pre's. Wondering if the other 6 were line returns from the three track, echo, etc...

    I'm restoring this set up and want to mimic the 30 St. workflow... this Presto machine was used to do all the Columbia 30th street mixes/transfers by Mark Wilder at Sony back in 1997.

    How the heck do you an image to this site??? It's not intuitive at all. I don't have a URL to post from, just pictures.

    Here is a link to another site with pictures for now... Scroll down half way to see the rig...
    Isn't she beautiful in WHATEVER WORKS Forum
     
  12. Bob F

    Bob F Forum Resident

    Sorry, you need an URL. This site no longer hosts user images.
     
  13. lukpac

    lukpac Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    There was a diagram on the wall in the old control room, but I'm not sure if we've seen any photos that are clear enough to understand the details, and regardless, I don't think any of us have attempted to do so. One example:

    [​IMG]

    It does seem to be 12x3:

    [​IMG]

    That said, my guess would be all 12 were mic channels, and any echo or tape returns were handled separately. Not certain about that though.

    Unless your user ID is @MLutthans ;)
     
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  14. lukpac

    lukpac Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    Oh, BTW, I'm surprised to hear that another Presto 3-track apparently came from Chess. I thought they went right to 4-track.
     
  15. silvertone

    silvertone New Member

    My Presto 3 track came from a jingle writer from NBC. His partner wouldn't allow them to use a Presto, it had to be Ampex, so this sat in new unused condition till Mark Wilder from Sony bought it in 1997 from the gentlemens grandson. Mark gave me all the history on her.

    She is in mint condition. Bob Irwin bought it off Mark to do some transfers for his Sundazed Music label after Mark was done with it. He sold it to me because he knew it should be paired with my 1961 Langevin based tube console (from UCLA's theatre film and television department). Mark was very glad I ended up with it.

    I do know Michael in California who owns the old Chess Records 3 track. As far as we can track down, his and mine are the only two that exist. Michael told me there's a guy a couple hours south of me (I'm in upstate NY) who's dad worked for Presto, he has a four track, 2 two tracks and a mono machine plus a bunch of inventory. So that's a good thing.

    I had read somewhere that Columbia 30th streets console had only 6 channels strapped as mic pre's and the other 6 we're for mixing. Can't remember where I read it... or maybe it was Franks or Teo's interview.

    My console came strapped as 7 mic pre's, 2 phono channels and 3 line amps, it's monitor section has three track and two track returns plus a stereo return for the one stereo send. My tech is modding it to make it switchable between mic and line on each channel.

    Thanks for the info guys.

    I made the picture my Avatar.
     
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2017
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  16. silvertone

    silvertone New Member

    Let me see if this Instagram URL will work...

    [​IMG]
     
  17. MLutthans

    MLutthans That's my spaghetti, Chewbacca! Staff

    Location:
    Marysville, WA
  18. lukpac

    lukpac Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    As far as I know, mixing was handled at 799 Seventh Ave, so it seems unlikely anything on the 30th Street console would be setup for mixing (specifically 3 > 2).

    As far as pres go, at least 8 mics on this session:

    [​IMG]
     
  19. silvertone

    silvertone New Member

    Okay, so let's see if this works...

    [​IMG]
     
  20. lukpac

    lukpac Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    You have to insert the link to the image itself, not the page the image is on:

    [​IMG]
     
  21. silvertone

    silvertone New Member

    Thanks lukpac. I did try but it wouldn't give me the image itself... just the page.

    Oh well, thank you for posting. Don't want to hijack Dans thread here so I won't be posting anymore images anyway.

    Just wondering about Columbia 30th street (console to tape and back) workflow.
     
  22. Bill Halvorsen

    Bill Halvorsen New Member

    Long ago, on page 52 of this tremendous thread, we discussed that my web page contains at least most of the 1961 (LA Columbia) studio film with a few selections of well-shot film of Percy Faith and some shots of Harold Chapman at the controls... (they make reference to a studio audience for the occasion, but there is no evidence of that except applause sounds so I doubt the audience part!) On my website I've added the late Alan Bunting's second attempt to bring the film to video/my site and it was scanned frame-by-frame (expensive, wrote Alan at the time). The result is cleaner with enhanced detail thus more opportunity for facial recognition of the players in the orchestra. There's good news and bad news; the sync between video and sound is off by a bar or so (video ahead of sound) on the last track (The Sound of Music) but the rest of the video is in sync. Here's the link: http://percyfaithpages.org/music_and_video/Percy Faith on Ed Prentiss Show complete.wmv - and if you go to the webpage and scroll down quite a way to where the film is referenced, the original is still there since the final song is OK on the original. This transfer was made at ontodvd.com in the UK and I fear the last song can't be fixed. For the added detail and less dirt on the film, give it a try, but remember the final song is bonkers. Bill Halvorsen
     
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  23. DMortensen

    DMortensen Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Seattle, WA USA
    That's really cool, Bill, thanks for posting it here. Although, the link seems to be to download the video rather than go to your page, or at least that's what happened to me. It's funny, the last song is fine at the beginning for the chimes but then it drifts. Not a disaster, though, IMHO.

    Nice to see the greater detail.
     
  24. DMortensen

    DMortensen Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Seattle, WA USA
    That said, since the link downloaded the video rather than your web page, I put it into the editor and think I fixed the timing for you. It's like there was a little missing video segment (one second and nine frames) but all the audio was there.

    Looking at it a few times, there's a video jump of the cellist just sitting there, right after the jumpy French Horn part. Maybe they cut the damaged film but left the audio?

    PM me your email address and I'll send you the fixed clip. I fixed that jumpy French Horn part, too. Didn't have time to watch the whole thing, are there other problems?

    Amazing what these editing programs can do (Final Cut Pro X).
     
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  25. ad180

    ad180 Forum Resident

    Location:
    USA
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