INTRODUCTION - Recording is one of those niches where emotions run out of control. There is often an inverse ratio where the people with the strongest opinions may know the least on the subject. We sat down with Brad and Jenny (husband / wife duo extraordinaire) to visit over the nuanced and bizarre art of recording. In today's environment of accelerating technology devices that are cutting edge today are often upgraded or replaced tomorrow. However, the purpose of this article is not to elaborate on all of these technical or geeky things but to discuss some fundamentals that are still tried and true. What strikes me as a bit of a conundrum is Denver is chalked full of some superb talent. Perhaps it is not Portland quite yet but the irony is that Denver musicians may spend thousands at Guitar Center on the latest home recording gear or go on monstrous tours. Meanwhile it would be less expensive to book time at a studio like Evergroove. Moreover, while some act like driving to Evergreen is far...compared the aforementioned drive to the SxSW sojourn to play some unsanctioned event, well I think you'll get what I'm saying...Precisely that Evergroove is a kickass studio. Learn more below:
BOC - What are the advantages of using a recording studio over home recording?
Brad: What a great question! There’s so much to say about this. I’ll try and keep it concise. There are many advantages to using a professional recording studio over home recording so let’s focus on the most important ones which are room acoustics, monitoring environment, and experience.
A well designed live room can flatter almost any instrument that is played in that room. That makes for a great sounding recording.
An accurate monitoring environment takes the guesswork out of microphone placement, mixing, mastering, and other critical decisions. I forget exactly who said this but, basically, to work in an untreated control room is like painting in the dark. And finally.. working with an experienced engineer allows a musician to be just that - a musician. Let someone else worry about the technical aspects of recording so that you can focus on what’s important... the song.
BOC - When you designed Evergroove Studio what were your goals for acoustics?
Brad: When we started designing Evergroove Studio I had the crazy idea that I could do it myself. While I did come up with some good designs it became very clear that to achieve our acoustic goals we needed to hire an experienced acoustician. We hired the award-winning acoustician Wes Lachot of Wes Lachot Designs. To this day, that has been the best money
we’ve ever spent on our business.
BOC - What improvements have you made to your studio over the years?
Brad: There have been a few facilities upgrades such as adding additional acoustical treatment to the tracking room but we’ve also done some equipment upgrades too. We continually evaluate client experience and how we can make the Evergroove experience better. In 2015 we migrated to Pro Tools 12 which was a big upgrade in efficiency. In 2016 we completely
revamped our headphone monitoring system so that artists now have more control and clarity in their headphones. What the artist hears in the tracking room is now more representative of what we are hearing in the control room. This creates excitement which leads to better performances. We also continually evaluate and update gear to ensure we are using the most effective and efficient equipment in the control room.
BOC - What made you want to invest in a recording studio?
Brad: From the moment I learned my first song guitar I wanted to learn about recording. When the time was right, Jenny and I evaluated the current market in Denver and noticed that there weren’t many affordable studios in the Denver Metro area that also delivered a high-quality product. So, we decided to go for it. After three years of construction we opened Evergroove
Studio in 2006.
BOC - What do musicians find unique about evergroove?
Brad: Musicians love our location and the feel of the studio as well as our commitment to audio excellence and customer service. We’re told that we are “easy to work with” and that artists feel “instantly at ease” the minute they walk through the door. It’s a very nurturing environment that fosters creativity.
BOC - I remember reading that you allow other people use your studio. How does this work?
Brad: That’s our bring your own engineer (BYOE) service. Freelance engineers can have full access to the studio and and its equipment for 12 hours a day at a very affordable flat-rate. This is easier and less expensive than incurring a large amount of debt to build and equip a studio.
Freelancers love working here because the rooms sound great and the layout is efficient and easy to learn.
BOC - What role does an engineer play? What role does a producer play?
Jenny: (looks at Brad)
Brad: Traditionally an engineer facilitates the recording process by having the technical knowledge necessary to select the best microphones for the record, operate and maintain the gear, and handle any basic editing requests. An engineer may have musical knowledge but, and
in a traditional sense, the engineer doesn’t offer musical or creative advice unless the band agreed to pay them additional monies and offer at least a co-producer credit on the album.
A Producer, in the traditional sense, has an extensive knowledge of music and is very creative musically. Most producers can read and write musical charts. They often play more than one instrument and each producer has a sound or style that would be imposed onto the album. Most
producers also have basic knowledge of audio engineering, but some actually have no idea how to engineer at all! Still, all producers have a certain “something” to their creative style that is sought by artists.
Modern engineering and producing is a bit different. Due to smaller budgets, the line between engineer and producer has been blurred. Most projects I work on include engineering and production suggestions at the same time. We just want to help artists make the very best record possible and if that means artists want my creative input as well, I am happy to oblige.
BOC - What are your plans for 2017?
Jenny: We have some very exciting ideas for Evergroove Academy of Recording and our recording services in general. We are working with our underground network of "Jedi Council" members to refine these ideas and make them available to the music community in general. We
would like to expand our marketing to reach home recordists and let them know that together we can make a great album and they can still save quite a bit of money.
BOC - How did you choose your location?
Jenny: We were tired of living in the loud, crowded city and chose a location that was a short drive to the metro area, provided a secluded vibe, had all the amenities of living in town, and had an outbuilding in which to put the studio. We actually spent more time commuting from Boulder to work in Denver than we do driving from Evergreen. It may look and feel like we are in the middle of nowhere, but we actually have a shorter and significantly more relaxing drive to most metro destinations. Plus, we would rather be awoken by barking foxes and coyotes than sirens and neighbors.
Artists love working here and often comment on how surprisingly short the drive is and how inspired they are to work here.
FOR MORE INFO ON EVERGROOVE VISIT THEIR SITE EVERGROOVE DOT COM