Interview - Jimmy Shellberg - Sonic Landscapes Recording Studio
iZ recently asked customer Jimmy Shellberg about his involvement in the recording industry and why he chose RADAR. Here is what he had to say...
iZ: Tell us about you, your studio, how you started in the business, etc.
Jimmy: Hi my name is Jimmy Shellberg and I am the owner of Sonic Landscapes Recording Studio in Jackson Michigan, and I have been involved in the music industry in one form or another for the past 27 years. My musical career started at the age of 14 with my desire to play the electric guitar. When I was 16 I joined my first band (Abraxis) and never looked back. I have been involved with many musical projects over the years, everything from-Progressive Metal to Chill Jazz. For me it has always been about the music and striving for the best sound quality. This passion would eventually lead me to owning my own recording studio and turning that studio into a commercial business.
Sonic Landscapes Studio started over fifteen years ago in a small apartment complex. Since then I've relocated three times and have been at my current location in historic downtown Jackson for the past 8 years. When Sonic Landscapes moved back to Jackson I came full circle - this was the location of another studio DAT Reel Thing who I worked for as engineer back in 1993 until 1995. It has taken many years to build the business up to where it is today and it has been a very rewarding experience.
Currently Sonic Landscapes is set up to record both analog and digital. The primary difference between an all digital facility and Sonic Landscapes is the use of an analog recording desk – a Trident 80B. For recording analog we use an Otari MTR 90 III. 2 inch 24 track tape machine and mix to an Ampex ATR 102 ½ inch 2 track tape machine. For recording digital we use a RADAR 24 hard disk recorder and mix to an Alesis Masterlink hard disk recorder. I want Sonic Landscapes to have a handle on both recording Medias because a balance between the past and present technology is very important. Another important issue for me is sound quality, functionality, flexibility, and robustness.
iZ: What is a memorable recording experience?
Jimmy: The most recent memorable recording experience I have had was the session work I did with Ted Nugent last fall. I really enjoyed working with him. He is very professional, a hard worker, and a great musician. It was my pleasure to work with him!
iZ: When did you first encounter RADAR? And why did you purchase RADAR?
Jimmy: I first encountered RADAR back in the mid 90’s at a recording seminar on a standalone hard disk recorder presented by Otari at Al Nali's Music in Ann Arbor Michigan. The seminar was on the RADAR system and I thought, “What a killer piece of gear!” At the time I was using the Alesis ADAT system that I really didn’t care for and I would have switched formats right then and there but the timing wasn’t quite right. In 2001 I purchased the RADAR 24 through IZ Technology direct. The reason I choose the RADAR system first and foremost is the SOUND QUALITY - it sounds amazing! Another deciding factor was the reliability of the unit. I had heard great things about the way the proprietary operating system performed and I did not want to use a system that was Windows or Macintosh based. I also liked the fact that the unit was controlled remotely and responded like a tape machine, and that it recorded directly to the hard drive. Finally, I was impressed that iZ Technology had exclusive rights to their product and their sole focus was on the RADAR System and its accessories.
iZ: How does RADAR fit into your studio work today?
Jimmy: RADAR is at the heart of the studio when recording digitally. I do my tracking with an analog desk directly to RADAR using their proprietary AD converters. I just love the sound! I have been doing it this way for the past 8 years. For mixing I reverse the process: out through the RADAR’s DA converters and back into my analog desk. Any editing needed is accomplished within RADAR. Archives are also completed within RADAR using DVDR’s. I use outboard equipment for the tasks of compression/limiting, expansion/gating, and for the use of time based effects. Since the addition of the RADAR System to the studio it has really streamlined the recording and mixing process for me. It has been a pleasure to work with all these years.
iZ: Anything else you want to share with the world?
Jimmy: Recording is an art form. As artists, engineers, and producers, ultimately we want that art to sound as we envision. To get there we need recording gear. Gear is like what colors are to a painter and the equipment you use to obtain these colors in recordings is very important. A combination of gear can give you a signature voice and set you apart from the masses while presenting you with an array of tones to use as your mood or genre change. For the past eight years, RADAR has been one of those rare pieces of gear that has allowed me to express my vision as an artist and expand my studio as a business owner with the best in sound quality and robustness that the digital world I feel has to offer at the present time. Thanks iZ Technology!
You can contact Jimmy by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
by phone: 517-782-5044
or check out his website at www.soniclandscapesstudio.com
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