The End of An Era…

LinPlug-RMVLin Plug, a fantastic plug in company from Germany, has decided to discontinue support for their Drum Module,the RMV. I first started using it when it was the RMIV and it was a great resource for interesting and innovative drum sounds.

The RMV upped the ante with a larger library and many other features that should have taken the world (at least Dance/Hip Hop) by storm.

Logic X 10.2

My composition Mac Program of choice has just had a major upgrade, one which includes Alchemy, an amazing synth that was created and developed by Camel Audio. It seems that Apple has bought the entire company so I imagine that we will be seeing the inclusion of Camel Space and Camel Phat in Logic before long.

This synth does most types of synthesis ( although I didn’t see FM or Wavetable) and even tackles Additive which has been a tough sell to the synth buying public so far. The Sampler module will import EXS samples and the Granular Module will take in standard wave files. The closest competition to Alchemy would probably be Omnisphere by Spectrasonics (which I don’t have).

There are quite a few performance upgrades in this update as well.

I am still waiting for Playlists and Channel Moving in The Mixer Page…pleaseAlchemy?

Hide The Sausage

Hide The Sausage_Summer always means “movies” to me so I was excited to be involved with writer/director Joe Benedetto’s new short “Hide The Sausage“. (’s not some X rated flick but a play on words about the main character.)

I wrote the two original songs with eLLe Morgan that are sung in the movie by Victoria Gillette and Maxine Gordon. eLLe and I were invited to do “cameos” at the interiors shot in NYC at Duane Park…really fun cast and crew. When Joe sent me a picture lock, I wrote and recorded the score according to his notes,using Logic 10.

One More Link In The Chain

The $ 64,000 Question is…how to make it LOUD (competitively) without destroying the mix?

The newest contender for me is from Melda Productions, a software company based in Prague, Czech Republic. They make a complete line of audio plug ins as well as a few synth based ones. The one that I had to have was the M Multiband Limiter.


It can be a tricky beast to tame (LOTS of control and parameters) but the starting presets are excellent. This one is sitting on my master bus now (along with Fab Filter and PSP Xenon).

Vulf Pack

A fellow engineer showed me this plug in by Goodhertz called the Vulf Compressor. It’s a unique piece that combines a compressor with “wow” (as in warbly like an old turntable) and a “lo-fi” module. The main page:Vulf-Compressor

Elegant in its’ simplicity, it sports a “wet/dry”slider on the bottom for blending your sonic mayhem with your original audio (if so desired).

So far, it’s been living on my drum bus (along with the PSP Old Timer) but I know it’s going to find a place on individual tracks as well.

If you are so inclined to go “under the hood” for some more detailed tweekage, Goodhertz has given you the option:

Vulf Under The HoodI’m glad that plug in manufacturers are taking this approach. The Fab Filter Pro L Limiter has a similar layout (but with additional “help” pop ups). Great plug in for brickwall  limiting with excellent metering and built in ISP indicator.

Sample Playback Emerges


The DX7 had done it…recreated “real” sounding instruments in a synth (Seinfeld” slap bass,anyone?). And the trickle down of sampling technology from Fairlight and Synclavier had made high quality sampling affordable (relatively speaking) for many musicians.

My first “Sample Playback” synth was the Roland U220. It was a 1Unit rack space (ie.very small) with a front panel interface that can kindly be described as “spartan”. This “multi-menu” layer of button pushing would be the new interface design for most manufacturers in the coming years. Some functions were so many button presses away that it was next to impossible to locate certain functions. But this new design paradigm enabled synth manufacturers to offer their units at an amazingly low price point.

My first encounter with this unit took place in a music store in NYC where I came away less than impressed..but something made me take a second look and it soon found a happy home in my rack. There were two card slots in the front that could accommodate proprietary sound cards from Roland, some of which were quite good. I had a few, including the strings and the exotic instrument ones. You can hear me playing the fretless bass from this unit on “The Pursuit Of Happiness” by Procol Harum. I tried to use the organ from it for some of the demos but the Procol crew was (quite rightly) not having in came the Hammond b3 and Leslie cabinet. Some sounds are just not made for sample playback.


Kevin Calhoun 1/14/56 – 11/2/12

I lost a great friend last week.

It’s hard to know where to begin when I think about Kevin. He was my songwriting/production/musician partner for many years and one of the most talented people I have ever known. His guitar skills were impeccable and no one could funk a Fender Strat like he could.
We first met in a small studio at 25 West 38th street where he was booked to play guitar on  a recording session. He had his own band “The Neighborhood” at that time and they had a single out called “Stop Killing Those Kids”. We hung out together after the session and he played me some of his songs. There was an immediate chemistry so we started writing songs together. I showed him the ropes as far as engineering and midi sequencing and he mastered both of them in short order.
Kevin was one of the funniest people in the world and refused to take anyone too seriously. When someone around who was trying to impress him with who they knew “in the business” , Kevin would stoop to the floor like he was looking for something. When that person asked him what he was doing, Kevin would reply “Oh, I’m just trying to pick up all those names you’ve been dropping”.

We did tons of 12″ Dance singles together and one of them led to our first publishing deal. This opportunity took us to L.A. and Paisley Park where we worked with some very “interesting” people. Kevin left behind a legacy of great songs and the positive spirit that was part of him and his entire wonderful family.

I really miss him.