Today on Tommy T’s Mundane musings -Tape Doesn’t Lie!

Well, folks, the Freeperati still haven’t realized that they’ve been Don-conned, so I have this fond memory for you :

Back in my studio engineer days I had a guy come in with a karaoke tape he wanted to sing along to (first one I’d ever seen).

Horrible little low-fi cassette, with his vocals on our good U47 mike laid over it.Okay.

It’s his money.

Then this guy, who is loaded up with bling, proceeds to dance around in the vocal booth. Really. Big moves and all. Like he’s doing a music video.

The bling’s clinking and clanking, his polyester outfit’s whooshing and zzziping like a bedsheet in a whirlwind every time he moves his arms up to frame his face, it’s all being sucked up by the microphone, and since I have to put a ton of compression on him (because he’s dancing around and moving sideways away from, and toward the mic) all the noise he’s making is as loud as his voice (which isn’t very). At several points he spins around, which means that he’s singing at the rear Auralex sound-absorbing wall instead of toward the mike.

Between verses, he’s smacking his tongue against the roof of his mouth and sucking air through his teeth. I can hear the studio owner and a visitor laughing in the next room through the open side door to the control room.

Finally, the guy finishes after several stopped takes, and comes into the control room for the playback. I’m waiting for the explosion – ” What is all that noise?? I don’t sound like that!!” (this is the common reaction of someone actually hearing themselves for the first time on tape, and it doesn’t sound anything like it does when they’re singing in the shower or along with the stereo)

He slaps me on the back and tells me he’s very happy that I captured the essence of his personality.

Tape doesn’t lie.

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