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Author Topic: Tom Petty album "Highway Companion" produced by Jeff Lynne  (Read 12920 times)
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« on: Jul 28, 2005, 08:46 »

Due later this year or early next year.

http://www.rollingstone.com/news/story/_/id/7513532/tompetty?pageid=rs.Home&pageregion=single1&rnd=1122615915151&has-player=true
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« Reply #1 on: Jul 30, 2005, 04:25 »

Some of the tracks on the album called "Highway Companion" are called ?Square One? and ?Down South? . And  ?Turn This Car Around?  and "Melinda" are being performed in concert for those of you who'd like a preview.

More on the album:
http://www.rollingstone.com/news/story/_/id/7400900/tompetty?pageid=rs.NewsArchive&pageregion=mainRegion
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« Reply #2 on: Aug 01, 2005, 12:41 »

I think Tom Petty's is very lucky with such an brilliant producer as Jeff Lynne! Every project he did got this touch, this typical thing I can't discribe.
It's almost a guarantee for a perfect album, at least perfect produced!

Hope he soon will produce his own new album...

greetz Willem
www.alternativa.nl
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« Reply #3 on: Aug 01, 2005, 04:22 »

I'd always thought Jeff's production worked best with Tom and am glad to see another album from them.
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« Reply #4 on: Aug 01, 2005, 10:22 »

Happy to hear Jeff's doing anything, especially working with a fellow Wilbury. BUT, I was hoping Jeff was going to get to some Jeff stuff! He hasn't even touched the ELO.BIZ site yet.

KB
www.kbmusic.net
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« Reply #5 on: Aug 07, 2005, 02:55 »

An excerpt from a Mix magazine interview with engineer Richard Dodd:

When we started mixing The Last DJ, we started with the intention of using automation. The majority of the board, which was a classic old Neve at Cello Studios in Los Angeles, had automation, while the monitor section didn't. Three of the songs on the album used significantly more than 24 tracks, because they involved orchestra. So I set up the console to leave the orchestra on the monitor section and had it submixed onto the automated side of the console. George Drakoulias, the producer, was very busy with the monitor faders during playback and eventually said, "I wish we could mix on the monitor side," so we did with the rest of the album. Only the overflow of the 24 tracks and effects returns went through the automated side of the console. As a result, the mixing went a lot faster. [Laughs] It made the process immediately a lot less tiring for those involved.

Today, however, mixing manually is more the exception than the rule. It's the exception, because it requires a very strong artist/producer/engineer relationship and an understanding that the dreaded recalls are just not going to happen in the way that fully automated and documented mixes operate.

A manual mix has a feel and rough edges, whereas a computerized mix often has all of the edges smoothed out, and that isn't always a good thing. Manual mixing still has the facility of analog or digital editing to change a section or part of the mix.

I mixed George Harrison's Cloud Nine album manually in his home, as were both of the Traveling Wilburys' albums. They were done on a console without any computer whatsoever. It even had Quadrant faders, the kind that went up and over. All of Boz Scaggs' Some Change album, Clannad's Magical Ring, Tom Petty's Into the Great Wide Open and 17 out of 22 tracks on Wildflowers were done manually. In fact, "Mary Jane's Last Dance," which appeared on Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers' Greatest Hits, was my rough mix that was done on an old Soundcraft 1600. It's funny: The faders feel more alive.

When you are doing manual mixes, [engineers] go, "That felt great," or, "Oh, I don't know. Did the voice feel loud enough?" They refer to feeling. When you're working on a computer, they refer to tenths of a dB, which really annoys me. It doesn't annoy me to the extent that I won't do it. It doesn't make any difference to me. If someone could tell the difference as to whether something was up or down a tenth of a dB in a mix, then they are a better person than I.

When I look at the range of your mix work, you go from very open, ambient, rather wet soundscapes, as with Clannad, to extremely dry, in-your-face mixes like those with Tom Petty. The voice, in particular, is very dry on many of those mixes.

Yes. I think it would be fair to say that I was given the confidence to present that by having the privilege of working with Jeff Lynne so much. When I came into contact with Jeff Lynne, it was like I was able to breathe a sigh of relief. There was this kindred spirit. It was fantastic: Here was somebody asking me to do something that I wanted to do. We got into it, and we found that we could make things drier and drier and drier. We could actually make it sound like it was drier than it was. [Laughs] We certainly developed a method between us of getting vocals.

Tom Petty takes charge of the track. He wouldn't suggest, I don't think, that he is perfectly in tune or anything like that, but he always performs perfectly. His vocal is interesting. If it is interesting, then it is worth listening to. If it is worth listening to, then there is no need to disguise it and cover it up and make excuses for it, which is what reverb can become.

I'm not against reverb; I'm against reverb used inappropriately. At its best, reverb can take you into an additional level of understanding. That is not meant to sound deep. It just can give you some of that element of fantasy when used correctly. In the wrong cases, it completely detracts from what is going on in the performance. The fantasy is already in there and the story and the way the artist has cleverly constructed the lyric and the melody, the tone and phrasing. There are a million-and-one more important things than whether something has reverb on it, like are they going to spend any money and effort on promoting the record?

So what do you do to achieve that hyper-dry sound? Is it mainly an EQ kind of technique?

What I do is no surprise; it is all of the same things that anyone would do. I probably just do it a bit more extreme. While we were mixing Boz Scaggs' Some Change album, we had done a little vocal overdub. We had a lovely mic and all of this stuff. While we were listening to it on this track, Boz said, "The vocal sounds great, but I wish it sounded like it did on my headphones." He had these really hype-y, wonderful Sony headphones that had this top end that never really exists anywhere in real life. So I went and got a microphone and I put the voice through those headphones and I miked them up and mixed that in with the track, and it worked! [Laughs]

Distortion and noise have never bothered me. If someone can sing the tune, then you've got it right. If you haven't captured a compelling performance, nobody is going to listen to it anyway, no matter how clean or undistorted it is. If the listener hears an attractive performance, then you've played your part. Try not to screw up!

Doing what?

Technically, we can ruin everything. We can add reverbs and delays and sink the voice into a track and hide a perfectly good performance and kill a song: We can make it uninteresting. By the same token, when all you've got is a person with a good-sounding voice - not the greatest singer in the world, but an interesting voice - the more you put that up front and say, "Here I am. I mean this," the more credible it is. They're not hiding behind anything. It's just real.

You ask me a specific question: "How do I do it?" I use lots of limiting.

Any particular limiters that you favor?

Yes, I do, and they are getting more expensive and cloned by the minute! They're black-face UREI 1176s.

When you imagine all the things that you do to get a dry, up-front sound, the last thing that you want to do is record on analog, because of all the extra noise and stuff you are going to bring up. But unless you do, you are not going to achieve that wonderful sound.

So it's like a Catch-22.

Exactly. Therein lies the secret. If you do all of the right things, chances are you will end up with the wrong thing. You can record in the poshest studio with the most expensive microphone and through the most popular console and the most widely used digital format, and then consequently mix it through all of those same things again, and you are going to end up with a textbook vocal that doesn't have anything added to it in terms of interest, in my opinion.

So it is the anomalies of the analog format...

It is easier than that to describe. It is called distortion.

Just part of "that thing you do."
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« Reply #6 on: Sep 09, 2005, 02:39 »

Quote from: "Admin"
Some of the tracks on the album called "Highway Companion" are called ?Square One? and ?Down South? . And  ?Turn This Car Around?  and "Melinda" are being performed in concert for those of you who'd like a preview.

More on the album:
http://www.rollingstone.com/news/story/_/id/7400900/tompetty?pageid=rs.NewsArchive&pageregion=mainRegion



You can hear a clip of "Square One" by going to http://www.elizabethtown.com/home.html.  It doesn't sound like a Jeff produced Petty track however.
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« Reply #7 on: Sep 15, 2005, 05:52 »

You can hear a clip of "Square One" by going to http://www.elizabethtown.com/home.html.  It doesn't sound like a Jeff produced Petty track however.[/quote]

Apparently it IS produced by Jeff, Tom Petty & Michael Campbell.  Hmmm...Jeff could be taking the "less is more" concept to extremes...
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« Reply #8 on: Sep 15, 2005, 02:21 »

I thought directly it was JL production and i cen hear it..why is it so unlikely that he produced it?


///Utter
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« Reply #9 on: Sep 16, 2005, 02:26 »

Quote from: "Utter"
I thought directly it was JL production and i cen hear it..why is it so unlikely that he produced it?


///Utter


There's just nothing in the clip to me that makes it easy to identify that Jeff produced it. But, knowing that he did isn't shocking. What about it to you makes it sound like Jeff had something to do with it?
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« Reply #10 on: Sep 17, 2005, 12:34 »

Well I'm not THAT good at music but I thoght it sounded JL in some simple tones...
quite similar to the brian wilson - let it shine production...
Now I might thought it was JL production because I knew that he produced teh new petty album and I
thought it were a good clip...pour moi anything with JL is good..


///Utter
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« Reply #11 on: Sep 17, 2005, 02:14 »

Quote from: "Utter"
Well I'm not THAT good at music but I thoght it sounded JL in some simple tones...
quite similar to the brian wilson - let it shine production...
Now I might thought it was JL production because I knew that he produced teh new petty album and I
thought it were a good clip...pour moi anything with JL is good..


///Utter


Yes, if you know up front it's prodcued by Jeff, it's not unbelievable. Jerry Palovick writes:  

"Hearing the entire song now, the only hallmark of a Jeff Lynne production is maybe the upfront slide guitar solo and the subtle string or keyboard part.  But it's a nice little tune by Tom.  It's one of those songs that grows on you quickly, having all the sensibility you'd expect from these guys."

I haven't heard the whole song yet.
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« Reply #12 on: Nov 17, 2005, 10:19 »

I have. It's very good yet very quiet and gentle.
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f your heart could talk I wonder what it would tell me.
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« Reply #13 on: Nov 24, 2005, 12:02 »

Tom Petty finishing new solo album
LOS ANGELES, Nov. 23 (UPI) -- Tom Petty's next album, "Highway Companion," is beginning to come into view and is likely to be released as a solo effort.

Heartbreakers guitarist Mike Campbell plays on the album, as does former Electric Light Orchestra leader Jeff Lynne, who was Petty's bandmate in the Traveling Wilburys and produced his first solo album, "Full Moon Fever," in 1989.

"I pretty much had it finished before we left on tour in June," says Petty. "I would imagine it's gonna be out by the spring of next year, if not sooner. But I'm still fooling around a little bit with one more song, and then I probably have more songs."

Petty recently published a book, "Conversations With Tom Petty," with journalist Paul Zollo. He'll receive Billboard magazine's prestigious Century Award on December 6 at the Billboard Music Awards in Las Vegas.
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« Reply #14 on: Dec 15, 2005, 03:18 »

The latest from Tom Petty on the album:  "'We`re still working on it,' Petty says. 'We`re just finishing a couple more songs. It should be out by spring or summer.' "
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