Magazine article Guitar Player

Carl Verheyen on Performance: Kicking Back at Home

Magazine article Guitar Player

Carl Verheyen on Performance: Kicking Back at Home

Article excerpt

LAST YEAR, I DID SOME thing I vowed I'd never do: I put in a dreaded home studio. Changing times have dragged me kicking and screaming into the home studio-business--something I've resisted for many years. Living in Los Angeles, I've been spoiled with the good fortune of recording in some of the finest temples of tone in the country. Who wouldn't want to make their records at Sunset Sound, Studio 2 where Van Halen did their first record, or Studio 1 where parts of Led Zeppelin IV and Exile on Main Street were tracked? The mic selection alone at Village Recorders or Capitol Records (where the reverb chamber was designed by Les Paul) is enough to make you pony up the day rate.

The writing was on the wall when the composer for the hit TV show Lost began sending over his engineer to do a "field recording" of me playing acoustic instruments. Rather than having me sit through 20 tacet sheets to play five cues at the orchestra session, they would simply cart a laptop, a hard drive, and a mic to my house, and I'd knock it out in 45 minutes. No big studio--yet it sounded fine on TV.

Over the years, I've received dozens of emails from guitarists after they've read an interview with me, or my engineer. They'd ask, "I use the same guitar as you, the same amp as you, and the same mic as you, so why doesn't my record sound like yours?" My answer was always the same: I don't record in my bedroom.

For many guitar tones, it's not only the mic--it's the room. …

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