No matter how hard you try, when you put a bunch of recording engineers in a room, the talk always turns to music, audio gear, artists, divas, more gear, then music war stories. Mix in a few drinks and the evening takes off! The talk turns to what happened during and after recording sessions, the good stuff! This became known as an “Engineers Anonymous” meeting.
Engineers Anonymous (EA) became a routine in the studio, in a place that has no routine, where there is never a dull moment. Welcome to The EA Club!
The engineers’ posting their stories here are all part of the clan. They have been in the trenches with the most prominent artists in the music business. From the time you start in the music business, and until after you have moved on, these moments on endless hours of sessions stay with you. How many days did you stay up? We had a deadline and didn’t sleep for a week? The artist decided to write and record a new song while we were mixing the last song on the record? I said erase track seven, not 17 (analog days)! It’s a reality; these things happen all the time.
Because of the crazy hours and crazy events, great stories come out when Engineers Anonymous gets together.
This story sums it up: One of our good friends, a great engineer and a special person, Bill Dooley, at 5 AM on a Memorial Day weekend, spent all three days replacing blown power supplies on a recording console. We had an impossible situation, the Producer would not stop production, and the studio, which just opened up the day before, was not ready for clients. In the heat of this Bill asked, “Do you know where the people working on a cure for cancer are right now? They’re home with their families, enjoying the holiday weekend, or at the beach soaking up the sun, or in the backyard having a cookout. We’re making shitty music, which will save nobodies life, and they at least take time off to enjoy the holiday!”
This is the music business…the lives of many techs, engineers, producers, and musicians.
This is the opening story on our blog here at Engineers Anonymous. Feel free to submit your story. The blogs may be edited to protect the innocent, but we intend to have ALL the stories told. Write your story, press the submit button, and you’re on your way.
Welcome to the EA club!
*We eventually will accept audio and video clips as well. The stories must live on!
Ted Nugent: Rock and Roll Redneck
1989 I was the assistant engineer on Damn Yankees first album with Ron Nevison producing. Sessions were going great except, Ted setup practice targets of bears, deer and other animals to shoot in the live room of the studio on down hours.
I was setting up vocal microphones one afternoon while the band was upstairs in the studio lounge. I went to go back into the control room to patch in the microphones and as I came around the corner an ARROW “buzzed” by my head as Ted decided to shoot some targets with his bow. I lookup up at him and before I said anything he said, “BETTER BE CAREFUL MAN”!!! No apology, no concern, as the arrow passed 12-15 inches in front of my head, just the line I will never forget, BETTER BE CAREFUL MAN
I finished patching in the mics and went to the studio manager Mark Harvey and told him what happened. Within an hour, Mark and other A&M executives we’re all in the room, not letting on that I had gone to management, they told him, the hunting bow and targets were a liability and needed to be removed from the premises.
I was glad when the project ended and to this day have “Red” Nugent on my list of assholes I do not want to work with.