recording studio engineer/music producer
As a passionate recording engineer I have been working freelance on a variety of projects in a wide range of settings. And I love it! the challenges and the joy of capturing the best sound in each situation, and then mixing it while being sensitive to the context and content of the work. I am currently based in Manchester UK but have also worked in Leeds, Newcastle & Berlin.
I have written a few blog posts in the studio engineering category of the blog – including What makes good recording engineers, Dynamic Range and the Loudness Issue & few tips for mixing a premium quality vocal.
I was also intrigued by Robert Henke aka Monolake’s album where he mixed and mastered an electronic music album using absolutely no compression – you can read the interview with Robert here.
:::AUDIO ENGINEERING AND MUSIC PRODUCTION:::
So like many I started out by mistressing Cubase – at home on a laptop – enough to get some tracks put together thanks to much generous help and daft question answering by a handful or two of kind more knowledgeable people. It was through the recording, mixing and mastering process of my debut album that I was inspired to pursue studio engineering professionally.
With 18 months dedicated to studio beavering and explorations leading to a Audio Engineering Diploma at the School of Sound Recording in Manchester, I am now passionately on my way as a studio engineer and music producer. I happily work in lovely high-end studios such as Gracieland Studios and Airtight Studios as well as mobile recording in a church and home productions with minimum resources. I have already recorded a wide variety of audio and music projects from spoken word to Opera via Post Rock.
I have a bit of a weakness for vintage equipment, mostly swing towards analogue than digital whereever possible and generally disapprove of the numbing and dumbing down 2-D phenomena that is the MP3. But apart from that I am lots of fun to work and play with and enjoy acting as mid-wife to the realisation of others’ ideas, passions and expressions. I maximise on my sensibilties to get the most out of the process for all involved – including sharing performance and vocal technique tips. I can get quite carried away with the aesthetics of audio sculpting, specific qualities of equipment and mic placement strive to produce fluid and dynamic mixes that speaks its message not too loud and clear.
Any thoughts, queries and discussions there on are very welcome..
Some client feedback:
“Caroline coached me on breathing and pacing and soon settled my [studio] nerves and I thouroughly enjoyed the experience. Not only did Caroline have the right people skills to deal with me but she also had the technical expertise and knowledge to produce a training CD for me of unrivaled quality. Having purchased many of these types of product before, I can recognise good and bad and my finished product is excellent.” – Dawn Roberts, MD of Outperform Training and Coaching Ltd.
“Caro is more than a sound engineer. She is a warmly human interface between those machines with buttons, blinking lights and the recording artist. She encourages without flattery, makes sensitive observations and intelligent suggestions, facilitating a top performance while making a quality recording.” – Lisa B, spoken word performer and poet.
“The group really enjoyed the sessions. They enjoyed going into the studio the most and developing the lyrics. The group wouldn’t have changed anything about the sessions. Thanks again [to you both] for all your hard work.” – Rochelle Jones, Young Carers Development Worker,Manchester Carers Forum
“Caro is an engineer where you feel comfortable enough to show your best and worst bits in the studio! She is open to experimentation both musically and technically which makes recording a good learning and musical experience. Her good nature means she is a pleasure to spend long periods of time with” – Emma Welsby, percussionist, drummer and drum n bass producer.
“There was no ‘techie’ intimidation, like some studios. Caro was relaxed and professional and I felt able to give it my best. I actually forgot she was there..Because she’s a singer herself, she knows what it’s like, and was very supportive and professional”––Angela Cooper, sound therapist and singer.
“My recording experience with Caro was great. She was fun and relaxed to work with while at the same time capturing brilliant sounds and performances. It was probably the most positive studio experience I’ve had.” ––Janet Wolstenholme, musician, engineer and producer
Some recent projects I have undertaken:
Outperform Training and Coaching Ltd – Recording and mastering training CDs
Jonstun and Urban Geisha – electronic, drums, guitar and vocals – debut EP production.
Corvus – I mixed their debut alt-folk album.
caro snatch – my second independent album & electronic production EP with recordings such as vocal, drumkit, double bass and theremin, saw and backing vocals
Lisa B – Spoken word album – producer role with musical/sound accompaniment
Post production – editing and mixing a 22 minute documentary for TV to industry standard
1,2,3,4’s – symphonic pop –advanced drumkit mic-ing, vocal, bass, electric guitar
The Detour – post rock – drumkit, bass and electric guitar
Jenny Kosmowsky – Soprano and (electric) piano
Angela Cooper – sound therapy – toning CD, voice and instruments
Ross Thomas – acoustic guitar and vocal – Myspace tracks
Dylemma – drum n bass – recording live drums
Janet Wolstenholme – indie/experimental pop – drumkit, vocals, bass and electric guitar, including producer role.
Eccles community project – recorded 2 groups of young people (10-15 performers) singing Muslim nasheed with percussion at Blueprint Studios
So, the official stuff…
Software: Pro Tools LE and HD 9.0; Cubase SX3; Ableton Live 6; Logic 9.0; Sonic Foundry Soundforge 7, CD Architect, Reason, Vocalign, Melodyne, Rewire, MIDI switches and Soundbeam.
Hardware: Amec Einstein console; Digidesign D Command controller, Digidesign Control 24 controller, Command 8; Soundcraft Ghost consoles; Behringer UB2222FX console; various drum machines, analogue and soft synthesizers and MIDI modules; outboard and plug-in dynamic controllers, EQ, reverb and FX units; a wide range of condenser, dynamic and ribbon microphones with varying polar responses.
Audio Engineering Techniques and Technology Diploma – School of Sound Recording
Certified Digidesign Pro Tools operator 101,110 & 201
Diploma in Music, Open University
Counselling Level 2 – Pass, NCFE