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OK Who is going to be listening to "Back On The Block" for next week???


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OK Kiddies.....

 

Here are the requirements for listening to Back On The Block.

 

Go to your best listening environment Get the CD out. Put it in your CD player. Turn all the lights in your listening area OFF!

 

There must be NO distractions!

 

Play it at an SPL of as close to 100 as you can. More if you have a good playback system. PLAY THE CD. Make notes as you listen, so we can discuss it. I know that aint easy with no lights, but you can do it!!!

 

I would recommend two complete listen-throughs.

 

There will be no technocrats allowed in our little group!

 

Notate how your psyche is effected by the sound!!!

 

How do you react to the sound of Back On The Block instinctively

 

Heres a thought - After our initial listen through, perhaps we should discuss what special equipment I did use, and why. Ill show you some photos And well see how close you were in your thoughts about what I used.

 

Then, lets have the group listen one more time.

 

Bruce Swedien

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Bruce, I can give you about 110 dB clean, but I'm not going to be able to do a bunch of repeated listenings at that level. :) But I will give it a couple of passes at higher levels, and several at a bit more "ear friendly" levels of 85 - 90 dB.

 

I'll kill the lights as per your instructions. I have a desk lamp I can easily switch on to help with the note taking between playback passes. :)

 

And a quick question or two for you, if I may: Do you want us to listen to the entire album, or do you prefer we concentrate specifically on the title track? The reason I ask is because that title track has never moved me personally as much as other things you and Quincy have done, including other cuts on that particular album. Maybe that should disqualify me from this particular discussion. :) Nothing personal Bruce, it's just a subjective / personal taste thing. :)

 

If I'm understanding your instructions correctly, you want us to concentrate on the emotional aspects first and foremost, with later, and secondary consideration being given to the euqipment you used, or maybe more specifically, how that equipment was used in an artistically and musically supportive manner. Am I on the right track here?

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Hi Bruce,

 

I've owned that album, bought when the cd came out, but I hated the sound of Korg M1, expecially the drums, no matter how well recorded, I had to fight an idiosyncracy I matured in years of being forced to use that keyboard for making the sounds of my paid works...There wasn't anything else better at the time that I could afford, so when I finally sold that keyboard I also got rid of everything reminded me it. (Still today if it happens to hear the "Universe" preset sound I feel the same pink disgust that I feel with the dx7 tinny el. piano.)

 

Anyway, I was impressed by the production level for the times....

Guess the Amp

.... now it's finished...

Here it is!

 

 

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Question: Were you involved in the recording or production of Secret Garden? That was a classic!

Lawrence

 

Re: Brucie and Secret Garden - Guilty as charged!!!

 

Brucie the Viking!!!

For those who've never heard that album I IMPLORE YOU!!!... listen to at least one track...

 

Take a good listen to Secret Garden. Rarely (if ever) will you hear a collaboration of solo singers on one song that sounds so good. Genre preferences aside, Quincy took singers (one legend Barry White) who were (mostly) great in their own right and molded them to make a hit. The reason I say "mostly" is because Al B. Sure was involved. He also sounded great on this song though his vocal talent was apparently "studio supported", his live singing was never really good. No matter.

 

James Ingram's vocal performance in this track was nothing short of incredible. This is one of maybe 5 songs in my life that played on the radio and made me run straight to the store to buy the album.

 

That song was (is) a classic. And talk about a SWEET mix and a beautiful arrangement. I fell in love with this track the first time I heard it on the radio in 1989 and it sounds every bit as good today. If you want to hear an example of depth (that elusive third dimension) in a mix, this is it.

 

Trust me. Play it. :) Better yet play it in the dark as Bruce suggested with your "significant other". You'll soon find out first hand what a "Secret Garden" is.

 

Have a cigarette handy! ;)

 

Lawrence

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If I listen to that song two more times, that would be the 1 million 2nd and 1 million 3rd time I've listened to it and I'll gladly do it!

 

Some off the cuff thoughts:

 

When it first came out, I listened to it constantly. I particularly loved and still love Tevin Campbell's solo (call and response w/ chorus) at the end of Back on the Block. Its so bluesy and soulful and funky and just fantastic. I remember driving along and rewinding on the CD player this last bit of the song again and again. I still do that.

 

I did the same thing with Secret Garden -- I love the chorus repeats at the end and couldn't get enough of them so I'd rewind that section to hear the outro again and again.

Dooby Dooby Doo
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Originally posted by Duddits:

...I did the same thing with Secret Garden -- I love the chorus repeats at the end and couldn't get enough of them so I'd rewind that section to hear the outro again and again.

Talk about a song that makes you wanna be with your woman, that one does it for me. That's a perfect example (for me anyway) of music that removes the world around me for 4 minutes. Isn't that really the point?

 

BTW...

 

It's funny you should mention Tevin Campbell. I watched an old "Live at The Apollo" re-run today and he was there singing live and he was fantastic. You don't see much of that anymore (fantastic young black male vocalists performing ALONE) in classic commercial R&B. It seems to be more about the show than the singer.

 

That kid could sing.

 

Lawrence

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Trust me. Play it. :) Better yet play it in the dark as Bruce suggested with your "significant other". You'll soon find out first hand what a "Secret Garden" is.

 

Have a cigarette handy! ;)

 

Lawrence[/QB]

 

Secret Garden..what a track. Heard the song on the album - "From Q with love"..still makes my hair stand when i listen to it...Backing Vocals sound super. The whole feel of the track is amazing. And the " From Q with love" album came with a instrumental version of the same track, featuring Kirk Whalum on sax..and a real emotion drenched sax solo that is...

Vinay Vincent,

BASE Studios

 

"Live Jazz friday nights at The Zodiac Bar"

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I was a latecomer to CD players for whatever reason, and in 1990 when I bought my 1st CD player, I bought "Back on the Block" and Jeff Beck's "There and Back" as my 1st CD's.

 

"The places you find love" is possibly the best thing I've ever heard in my whole life! To me, that mix captures the beauty and emotion of the overall performance better than anything I could compare it to. There are some very unique aspects to the instrumentation, such as Foley's piccolo bass part, and the richness and power of some of the keyboard parts. Siedah Garrett's vocal is awesome. That track is the whole nine yards.

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Originally posted by GTRBass:

"The places you find love" is possibly the best thing I've ever heard in my whole life! To me, that mix captures the beauty and emotion of the overall performance better than anything I could compare it to. There are some very unique aspects to the instrumentation, such as Foley's piccolo bass part, and the richness and power of some of the keyboard parts. Siedah Garrett's vocal is awesome. That track is the whole nine yards.

I too find this track to be one of the best I have ever heard. Hard to explain; however it shook me to my roots and captured my soul(perhaps it was the time and place?)

 

Good stuff! :thu:

Steve Force,

Durham, North Carolina

--------

My Professional Websites

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Hey Bruce,

 

I'm ready anytime as I got in a good listen yesterday... WOW!!

 

I'm wondering if you would first want to lay a road map out for us as to the structure of the song??? This way we should all be able to talk about the different sections more clearly. I'm not sure if something I might be calling a verse, someone else might call it a bridge and such.

 

Can't wait to see the pic's you're digging up.

 

Have a great day (I'll bet it feels good to be home),

 

Russ

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