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Sunday, June 30, 2013

Veganwiz & PETA





Let's stop eating killed animals!








Thanking Margie, Sir Paul McCartney's PETA and my friend Daniele.


Saturday, June 29, 2013

The Stars Atheist - Margherita Hack passed away



I always loved listening to her witty talks about Life origin and so human, sincere doubts about existence of God(s)...

She demonstrated that intelligence and sincerity were enough to became a scientist, an astrophysicist with no need to bow to politicians and church.



R.I.P. and condolences to her husband Aldo and her beloved dog and cats...



Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Iva Bittova & Vladimir Vaclavek - Bile Inferno



Having in my ears some duets by Fred Frith and Iva Bittova, while lazily browsing in my Mac music library I found this disk I didn't listen to for a while...

It's a masterpiece... an humble, absolute masterpiece... a double disk of acoustic, avantgarde/folk/classical/improvised music which will please every discerning ear around...

It's my lazy morning soundtrack, right now... it's weird, deep and strangely alien, seldom heard music.




Dig it!





Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Boop-oop-a-doop - Helen Kane, Betty Boop and... Marilyn Monroe




Some of you will remember Betty Boop's sexy cartoon created by Fleischer Bros in 1929 to allow the Depression days Americans to survive the hard times.






She had a flesh and bones model, Helen Kane, a tiny sex-bomb 157 cm tall who was hired by Ben Ash and after singing at Paramount Theater in Madison Square, NYC That's my Weakness Now with... you'd bet it?!? - some cool scat i.e. Boop-oop-a-doop - she got an USD 5,000 weekly wage... 1929, Depression Days' U.S. Dollars!!!









































Helen was the human copy of Betty Boop: same childish voice in a sexy mignon sized lady... when she  tried to obtain some legal acknowledgment and merit from Max Fleischer himself, back in 1932, asking for an hefty USD 250,000 at the Court, Paramount and its lawyers quoted a Clara Bow's Hollywood star, similar looking, and Baby Esther who used same (childish) singing at Cotton Club.


Furthermore, she was the singer who launched - in 1928 - that song, I wanna Be Loved by You, which the world, myself included, guessed it was by Marilyn Monroe.





Both Betty Boop and Helen Kane had an unfortunate life ending: Helen, after owning and managing a restaurant in NYC - the Healy's Grill - with her former third husband, Dan Healy, died of a cancer at 62; Betty, thanking Hays' morality and decency control laws, was changed her joyful and playful character in 1939 and, after overdressing her in house-maid heavy clothes, she was retired by Paramount as the end of an era of hungriness and dancing, when everybody, men and women, were wearing hats!

The WWII wasn't that far... and Marilyn wasn't that luckier, later on.




Monday, June 24, 2013

Music & painting - "Vermeer & Music" - London's National Gallery celebrates it from next June 26th



Like for cinema and music, painting and music can be as boring a matching... if badly matched:-)

The Flemish masters like Gabriel Metsu, Jan Steen, Hendrick Ter Brugghen, Jan Molenaer, Gerrit Dou were all fond of music, as shown in their masterpieces... but only Johannes Vermeer, born in Delft on 1632, was "obsessed" enough to dedicate to the topic one third of his (vast) production.





From next June 26th, masterpieces like "The Music Lesson" and "A young woman standing at a virginal" will be shown:  on the latter, technical details from Antwerpen's Andreas Ruckers' instruments are shown, like in a pictures... the original Ruckers' muselaar (inverted left/right hand keyboard vs. virginal) are here dispayed for posterity... a detail which proved extremely useful for restorers.




Superb!









 


Thursday, June 20, 2013

Claudio Rocchi passed away on June 18th!



My friend Gab told me, today...

My heart is bleeding, folks...

He has been my mentor, the man I thanked every day of my musical life for introducing to Shawn Philips, Jefferson Airplane, Crosby & Nash, Allan Taylor and many, many others when broadcasting at Radio Rai (Per Voi Giovani, Popoff, Radio Starship and other programs he enriched with his musical choices...).

I fell in love for 12 strings acoustic guitars after attending at his '70s concerts when he was using those sought-after Gibsons'...


... and his discs: Volo Magico n. 1, La Norma del Cielo (Volo Magico n. 2), Essenza... a younger me was deeply changed, forever...


He has been a man of HUGE integrity and compassion...

A wise, an humble genius... uncompromising and always true to his trueness, uniqeness and identity.

Love and live forever, dear Claudio.

R.I.P. and condolences to Susanna and to myself and the many, many who sincerely loved him.



Thursday, June 13, 2013

The Digital Azimuth or DDDAC frenzy in Koln


Hi, folks... here is an essay by Reinhard, a chronicle of last weekend near Koln, with new and old friends  enjoying music in Klauscope's Goto system glorious sound with latest Doede Douma's and Bernd's DACs and PSUs... Jean and Andre, James and his girlfriend and others guests from France - BUT me - were partying... I deeply missed the gathering, indeed... thanking my german pal, here is the gap filled, for posterity;-)

"Dear Stefano,
first of all congratulations on your personal ameliorations in sound within your own Gotorama with "digital stream"... This is wonderful to read. And this is really awesome, isn't it? And I know exactly how lucky you feel now... so, especially regarding this matter: welcome to the club (again)...
Let me add that we all were very sad that you missed out and that it was a pity that you were not able being part of our latest session here at "The Goto-Triangle" at Cologne just the other week, especially because of this specific theme...


This is Klaus's system, ready for testing...


Well, right in the beginning let me thank you for allowing me to put the relevant research and listening results of this special event onto your page, so that we all are at least able to fill in this gap a little via some infos and pictures... and indeed, the results are really breathtaking, rather dramatically superior to that what you experienced on your visit last december, another really big (musically fulfilling) step forward:
1. simply because of possessing and being capable of playing the new ISO-file-format, ripped from SACD with much higher resolution than 24-192 (the amount of data is about as double as much, and you may have an idea of how small the "stairs" in digital reproduction become, building a nearly "perfect" sine-curve and how the sound gets nearly completely integrated because of that) and
2. heavy progresses within the DDDAC-areas "Quadriga" and "Octopus" in combination with Doede's and Bernd's corresponding power supplies for the DACs and USB... you may imagine: it's hard to believe, but within HiFi-heaven, where we clearly are already for quite some time, there is another stairway going up (you remember: it was you, last time using the expression: "stairway to heaven" (not to quote Led Zeppelin but when entering Klaus's "Nirvana"... and what a stairway that is...




and


 Reinhard's Quadriga, the DDDAC1794 24 Bit NOS
and picture 6, in combination with Bernd's 18 kg power supply












What about the panel?


They were, from left to right: Triodedick, Doede Douma, Jean Hiraga, Klaus Speth and André Klein.

1. of course the whole time we held a place free for you, Stefano, but unfortunately you missed it out
2. Jean Hiraga, the "Mount-Everest" in HiFi, who meanwhile has become our long time follower and whose satisfaction, contentness, nodding with his head and grinning on his face has become more and more fulfilling... (I know that we all once started at zero, being uninformed when we were young, so if there should be somebody out there not knowing about Jean, please google... the ocean of his longtime hardcore researches and reports is way too vast to present it all here (to name just two things: class A and tube amps development...), and to make it short, Jean is the one - together with Shinichi Tanaka from Goto Society in Japan -
who have constructed, listened to, measured and reported about the most and highest end systems all around the globe for quite some forty years now...
3. Doede Douma - the "new magician" in the row... there is no longer any need for me to introduce him further, because since our last session he has established one of the most inspiring and creative sites in the net for DIYers, not only especially regarding DACs,
but as well amps, and speakers, and...
I enjoy his sites that much because I - as a non physician and non electrotechnician - understand most of what is written there, and I can clearly hear everything that what is all about... to me - it is just exactly perfect !!!
4. just the same seems to have experienced our first time guest, "Triodedick".


Klaus supervising, w/Doede Douma and Dirk aka "Triodedick", doing what they like most: "conjuring tricks";-)
Triodedick is very kind and quite famous, not only among DIYers. He is a real specialist, also coming from the Netherlands (like Doede), a long time friend and colleague of Doede in studying physics and electrotechnics at Utrecht University and sharing our HiFi-hobby ever since. If you like, enjoy his sites:
and here you might find Triodedicks report - in four parts, not only for DIYers - about Doede's "magic" DAC, the DDDAC 1794 24 Bit NOS DIY DAC (part 1 to 4)...
5. and André Klein, a very nice guy from Metz in northern France with very specific knowledge and skills, joined us again... some of you might know him from the regular European Triode Festivals in France: he is an extreme tube lover and connoisseur and the proud owner of a system based on Western Electric WE15 in combination with self-built WE amplifier model 46-B for which he won several prizes... he is an EMT-turntables-and-cartridges afficionado, as well...
5. and James, our astro-physician from Australia, with girl friend, still in the process of exploring and planning his system (having spent some 70.000€ in the past and still not content), but knowing already the very best systems in Japan and ours...


James with his girl friend, sitting and listening in the - for Hi-Fi-Fans - "center of all centers"

6. a befriended couple from Jean from France, which simply couldn't stop getting astonished and overwhelmed... you know, how people react, when they listen to Klaus's system for the first time. They are struck in awe. And exactly the same happened here: you couldn't talk to them...
Jean, André, and french guest
7. and lastly, Klaus and his wife Moni,  (I do not want to produce redundant information material here, so when you google, you will find enough of what Klaus is doing for the last 40 years...)


... and this is me, Reinhard...




What was it all about last saturday ?

What was the theme... the main theme?

The very theme?
This meeting was some sort of fulfillment (that way, that  w e   h e r e   nod with our heads, and not anybody else) of about three till four years of research within the digital area, and here especially within the DAC-area, i.e. digital to analogue converting... and this proved to be extremely exciting!

DDDAC1794 24Bit NOS in all it's glory, with nice display showing bits, resolution, voltage... programable...
... latest since Douglas Sax, yes, the guy from Sheffield Lab with the direct vinyl cuts... some years ago at the CES in Vegas officially claimed that vinyl is simply produced because people demand it - and  n o t  because it is better than digital - nearly everybody awoke and got curious, so did we, and especially Doede...
Suddenly everybody wanted a DAC, and everybody got a DAC, and everybody was unhappy with the results, first with the small ones, then with the big and better (?) (or at least more expensive ones) up to 7.000 €... no, I do not name them, but they are leaders on the market and very famous...
...the result was always, I repeat  a l w a y s, that way, that we were all still unhappy and more or less (mostly more) plagued by a somehow unpleasant, unprecise and muffled sound with digititis (the deficiency of getting a signal that way reproduced that the "stairs" in digital are not or hardly annoying and/or recognizable during listening - mostly caused by jitter), the results were always clearly way beneath vinyl reproduction.
We nevertheless immediately recognized the "advantages" of a DAC even if we were not happy with the implementation and realisation at the time... as is to this very day with external, i.e. not self built DACs, independent from low or high resolution (by the way the results with higher resolution are not as good in comparison to 16 Bit)...
... and exactly this was the hour of Doede, "living" in the digital world from the first moment on at university since 1976, he managed to grew up (Hi-Fi-wise) with the fulfillment of his splendid ideas, clearly and precisely, and it pregnantly shows... well, to make a long story short:
(if you should like it long, you may visit his homepage here):
Doede developed two DACs, his DDDAC1543 for 16 Bit, and later on with the upcoming of high resolution and corresponding downloads on the market his DDDAC1794 24 Bit NOS. But he not simply developed a DAC, or DACs. What makes his DACs that special is the possibility of multiplying the DAC-Chips which ameliorate the sound  a n d  reduce the jitter. As the results were really spectacular within his DDDAC 1543 he went from 12 to 24, to 60, to 120, and finally to 240 chips (maximum amount: 16 x 16 = 256)...


This is Reinhard's DDDAC1543 16bit DAC with 120 chips, also in combination with Bernd's power
supply - getting attested on saturday the most "punch" of all.

The sound still and still and still and still got better, dramatically better, and within the DDDAC1794 24 Bit NOS till some months ago he went from one deck to four decks (nickname "Quadriga") and then to eight decks, nickname "Octopus", here the sound got much better as well, but because of a 24 bit chip as a basis and an already pretty much sublime sound to start with the need of multiplying chips is not that high as with 16 bit chips... although we will test further.
During the last three years it became obvious that the results of Doede's research were that good that the ultimate tests could only be hold at Klaus's...why ? because Klaus's is not only the best but the only place capable of bringing the 500 horse powers of the newly constructed DACs onto the road... I mean onto the road without squeaking... and that's exactly the point, if it is squeaking - like on nearly every other system - you either loose music or the music is not reproduced the way you like it...
This was exactly our theme on saturday: testing these different DACs with different amounts of chips and decks without squeaking, and "with" and "against" each other, and of course with all sorts of music and resolutions, ranging from "simple" 16 bit up to 24 Bit 88, 96, 176, 192 kHz, and as the icing on the cake with for the first time ISO-files, the direct DSD.format (DSD64 and DSD128) with about the double amount of data as with 24-192...

... and ooohhhh, not to forget, all this in comparison with a big lorry battery, and Bernd's and Doede's newly finished controlled power supplies, and a new controlled power supply from Mundorf...
Doede's controlled power supply, to the right


Mundorf controlled power supply (for Bernd's controlled power supply see above)

Testing results
Of course the highest amount of chips and decks were the clear winner, in combination with the superb controlled power supplies, and the Kimber USB silver cable that Klaus and I have in use..
I'll do not enter into a description of the sound, there is not much to say, it is realistic and natural, and it is simply music, that's what we ever wanted but never got - till now (and here ISO brings us to exactly that level in reproduction what we ever have been looking for - to me this sounds like master tape)
We can listen now to music that way that the human brain is no longer bothered by whatever things that do not belong to the music and which are simply wrong and/or artificial. Let me say: the result was: listening to music the most pleasent way out of any system I ever heard (exept mine), no matter what music and/or what loudness... (but you have to keep in mind, that I have not heard Doede's eight deck DAC - the "Octopus" - on my system...)

USB-cables
Wow, wow, wow, that was a program... as it turned out it was nearly too much to handle... it was not of course, but after some twelve hours there was no time left to properly check out different USB-cables within this "circus"... and I have to admit, the results were so satisfying right from the beginning, that there was no real need to urge.
USB-cables... this is indeed a theme on its own... all sound different... and this within the pure digital area where only 0s and 1s reign!!!

Ultimately we want to get rid of PC- or MAC-norms, i.e. USB, Firewire or whatever, in order to get completely rid of these "uncontrollable" influences. This will be our next step, to check out the PC offal and take off the digital signal directly from the motherboard, but this is still a way to go... meanwhile we have to bear with USB. And actually we use Kimber USB silver cable. Klaus and me, we both have it running (it took more than 150 hours to burn in to the point)... those of you who might want to read more about the experiences that as well others have with it, have a look here:
This cable is really good, and it has a very acceptable price, at least it may serve as a good start to compare and try out more...

Controlled power supplies
The controlled power supply (everywhere: in pre-amp, channel deviders, power amps, DAC, and later on for hard drives and within the PC) is also a chapter on its own. I remember reading Jean and others - long time ago - that there is no better power supply than batteries... and of course at that time we didn't dare to say anything against it, neither did we try it out for ourselves... but now we really wanted to know, precisely...
Klaus got a large lorry battery, weighting some 40 kg or so, and we listened with it to music in combination with the DACs ... well, it was fine, it was ok, it was quiet, and we finally presumably would have been constantly convinced if Bernd would not have constructed a new power amp, originally planned as power amp prototype for the Goto-drivers, with two trafos, one for +, and one for -, with some nine kg each, so both about 18 kg.... it was not at all constructed and intended to supply the DACs, it was just a funny idea and happened by accident to be tested out in this combination.
This testing came out as one of the greatest surprises in HiFi-history: driving some 500 g DACs (each) with an 18 kg controlled power supply!!! As it turned out it is exactly that what is needed to get the most and best music out of the DACs (the same results are valid in all other amplification areas - as indicated above)... Within the chain of the amps exactly this result is "nothing new" and known for years, but I have to admit, if I would not have heard it with the DACs, I would not have believed... and listening to these results Doede immediately began to construct a power supply for his own DAC, with really dramatic results, see picture above.

ISO
Before I start with ISO, just let me tell you that just the other day I read in "a very friendly forum", where they are not shy to emphasize to unknown "newbies" like me, like in a canon or choir, that "friendlyness is... culture", that ISO-files are not a "new sensation". Well, that's right. ISO-files per se are not a new sensation. If one is able to generate a perfect PS3-rip.

Stefano, I ask you, who on earth is capable of doing that?
The "new sensation" is fortunately no longer in getting the ISO-files ripped, but in getting them properly played!

Who dares to say that he is capable of reproducing ISO properly ? Knowing, hearing that what they are listening to is still not that what they are looking for? Anyway, I have biggest doubts that anybody else on the globe is able to even come close to Klaus's results,  e s p e c i a l l y  with ISO... the Goto drivers with ISO really live up to their true potential, now they really can show what they are capable of!!!
For those who are familiar with generating ISO-files from SACD and "perfect" PS3-rips (it is indeed not that easy and not that long possible at all), and know not only how to rip but play them  p r o p e r l y, ISO-files might indeed be no "new sensation".

But I wonder if all those who are that much talking about are personally capable of at all, and I wonder of the amount of people on the globe who have these SACDs, the corresponding programs to rip them, and know how to do it properly, i.e. 100% perfect... (and not just only produce a rip like the hundreds of millions faulty ones flowing in the net containing artifical mathematical error corrections which is not music and which at least I do  n o t  want to listen to...)
Even if we take a "perfect rip",  then we all know from tape, vinyl, CDs and SACDs how difficult - or should I say better: impossible (at least so far) it is to make ultimate and especially proper use of the corresponding infos of these specific media. We are long time researchers in trying to reproduce "that what is on CD/SACD" and not simply playing a CD/SACD. And we can assure that nobody on the globe is totally capable of - neither are we... we are struggeling to get there, and we have come closer and closer, but we are still not "there", till this very day, but we have come closest possible now - with ISO...
Let me finish with a phrase, that I read on the "very friendly forum", that I talked about (thanks to the one who quoted it), which really made me thoughtfully. Somebody quoted Jiddu Krishnamurti, who wrote in "Freedom from the Known", paraphrased: "if someone says 'this' is 'it', run... "
Here I am, with that, what I have heard, and I have to say: yes, "this" is "it". So Stefano, please, help me: Cologne Cathedral is built, and I am right in the middle... listening to the humility pipe with 16,4 cycles... I know of no better place... and I am happy... so, should I really run, go somewhere else? ... and if yes, where?


Jean Hiraga, Doede Douma

Stefano, you know what it takes to bring these two guys, e s p e c i a l l y  t h e s e  t w o  g u y s, to such a deep understanding and satisfying smile -  only heavenly HiFi-delights are capable of...

Within this specific context somebody on "the very friendly tracker" asked me:
"OK "rhlauranna", but what shall we learn from your links to Stefanos site?"
First, that I am the last one to tell "them" what "they" should learn, it's up to them...
Let me answer the following: if someone would have told me some four or five years ago, that "my" music after 45 years in HiFi ultimately would be defined by machines and mathematical algorhithms, I would have declared him completely mad... But as as it turns out: it is exactly like that...
... and it looks like that:




PC, and MAC, and NAS, and I-Pod, and W-Lan, and cables, and... ONLY the pix is blurred, folks;-)))

Music rules...


Thanking Reinhard for his review... the links and pixes are a great support for anyone wishing to deepen the topics... and YES, sure the digital-made-right is far from being fully understood... and these guys are the daredevils who will reach the highest peak!


P.S. - some pixes are still out-of-context... will fix it soon... just wishing to share it ALL - the enthusiasm and feeling - asap.


Monday, June 10, 2013

The King is Naked!




Yes... The King is Naked!




... I know, folks... you read on these pages several times "Nirvana... I got it!... Wonderful... I've no more wishes my Lord... I like it immensely..." and so on and on...

I'm sincere... an honest, straight, humble guy... a music and audio lover... my whole audio life is a gravel, unpaved road, and pebbles and dust are the too many errors and cul-de-sacs I experienced on the path!

Some days ago, when my wife heavily pushed me to dismantle also the VERY last audio stronghold at home, the La Scala's and 300B monoblocks I used for some background music while partying or simply having dinner, usually playing Sakamoto/Morelenbaum's "Casa" or some Keith Jarrett's piano or Elvis Costello's "North" or some italian music... well, my tiny studio was... IS already tightly packed with my turntables projects, vintage stuffs, Studer and Telefunken's tape machines (!!!)... so, REALLY, only thinking to haul the Klipsches' there worried... no, horrified me!

I (regretfully) auctioned on Ebay for a couple of days... then I ended in a hurry the auction, shameful only thinking to auction them, leave alone "selling" them.

Why?

...  my best pal Loris - a long time audio maven and La Scala's scholar - when I shared my pain and doubts about home system dismantling hinted something like: "Stefano, DO NOT sell Klipsches'... use them, instead... tune on them and tune again the BIG Gotorama... listen to them carefully for some days, then go back to Goto's stuff..."

So I did, pals...

A totally new sonic landscape opened to my ears... a looong time passed since I really listened to 300B and La Scala's, at home... only listening-from-another-room thing...

Now Ralph Towner's breathing, strings squeakings, ambient noises... Gary Peacock's double-bass... all is like brand-new to me, also on discs and disks I knew VERY well...

Was TacT and digital time- and room-correction - someway - veiling? Was the 6db eaten by TacT's working against music and detailing? Was some (relative) boominess on some recordings better than the above shortcomings?

Loris forced and pushed me to think to ALL the above... with ears, soul, body and mind ALL connected and unison working...

Yesterday, at the end of one week of positioning La Scala's in my studio, making it possible to enjoy both Gotorama and La Scala's based minimalist system, I finally got it, again.

That sense of surprise and awe that only The Very Best Listenings give, concert or home ...

All considered, the arrival of Cunningham CX-310s in Thomas Mayer's Line Stage was bombastic, as well!

A new level of beauty was reached... I felt very, VERY fragile and unprotected... yesterday, a rainy, dull Sunday, I felt strong enough to COMPLETELY dismantle Gotorama... put TacT on a shelf and began the mysterious process of finely tuning by-ear my system, only using Mayer's/Slagle 4-ways Passive crossover... I made drawings and took records of previous setting, of course...

TacT/digital fine tuning was a PITA, as Franz Hinterlehner was hired three times to measure and align and program TacT's... would be stupid to throw away ALL this!

After some hours... literally tons of amps and turntables hauling, at 10,30 P.M. (began at 7,45 A.M.) I reached that balance I was looking for, using music and some (valuable) support from IVIE IE-30 RTA and IVIE IE-20 Pink Noise Generator!

It was like a kick at the stomach... ouch!

The double bass was INCREDIBLY airy and deep, quick and unboomy... real, true-to-life; female voices were silky and nicely sized... detailing was MUCH better than the awesome La Scala's.

It happened many time and it's life and audio... life comes from changing and death is life, as life is death... destroying something to make it better...

... and still my lazy-minded friends - but Loris;-))) - says: "Stefano, I wouldn't change anything!" or "Don't touch your system, anymore!".

So, maybe, this is what differentiate the braveheart from the coward;-)))!

HA!


Thanking Livia Lucchese for the nice watercolor...




Sunday, June 9, 2013

Birkenstock's London - The Best Shoes in the World?




IMHO, yes, folks...  I own several Church's, Tricker's, Segalin's handmade shoes, Clark's, Saxone's, Allen Edmonds's... but only Birkenstock's are so confortable... feet are NEVER sweating and in pain, also after hours and hours wearing and walking... the right inner climate - never too warm or cold - is just perfect...










I love them: shape and function... owned many pairs and will always buy a new pair when worned out!






Friday, June 7, 2013

Shining!



... no, folks not talking about "that" Shining... yet something clicked, yesterday evening...




Klipsch's La Scala, Emission Labs' "Mesh-Plate" 300B monoblocks, Mayer's Line Stage with '30s Cunningham CX-310 and... Philips CD-104;-)))

Pure Magic!







Is it possible? ... and Gotorama: is it the love over?

Talking about easiness, pals... simple and easy... natural.

Unredundant... beautiful!





It's - someway -  audio archaeology, BUT, believe me, you haven't listened to singing voices if you never tasted these old, sought-after globe triodes... incredible!

Gotorama and La Scala... I'm bigamous:-)))





Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Aimer Et Perdre: To Love & To Lose Songs, 1917-1934 - music from the past


Just released 3 LP version on Angry Mom Records.
Accompanied by three illustrations by Robert Crumb and a 16 page booklet full of lyrical translations and rare images, this unique ode to the universal power of love collects 36 prewar songs of passion. These arose from the Cajun bayous, Ukraine, Poland, rural America and beyond: "She Lied to Me" Emry Arthur; "Aimer Et Perdre" Cleoma & Joe Falcon; "I Never Will Marry" Carter Family; "False Hearted Lover's Blues" Dock Boggs; "Kolomyika Buczacka" Michael Thomasa; "Two Step De Maman" Amede Ardoin & Dennis McGee; "Too Late" Stoneman Family; "Marusia" Ukrainska Selska Orchestra; "L'Abandonner" Montet & Dupuis, and more. Respectfully crafted by Christopher King and Susan Archie for Angry Mom Records



TRACKS
RECORD ONE
SIDE A

1. Aimer et Perdre (To Love and To Lose) - Cleoma & Joe Falcon
2. Polka Mazurka - Ukrainska Selska Orchestra
3. Ladies Quadrille - Happy Hayseeds
4. Je Veux Marier (I Want To Marry) - Leo Soileau & Moise Robin
5. I Never Will Marry - Carter Family
6. Assi Dans Les Fenetre de Ma Chambre (Sitting by the Window of My Room) - Blind Uncle Gaspard

SIDE B

1. Oberek z Migroda (Oberek From Migroda) - Jozef Brangel i Wiejska Orkiestra
2. De Tuy Bew Yamiezku? (Where Were You Johnny?) - Samuil Philip & Lemko Orkiestra
3. Ukrainske Wesilla w Ameryci (Ukrainian Wedding in America Pt. 1) - Ukrainska Orchestra Pawla Humeniuka
4. Ukrainske Wesilla w Ameryci (Ukrainian Wedding in America Pt. 2) - Ukrainska Orchestra Pawla Humeniuka
5. A Freilachs von Der Chuppe (A Happy Dance from the Wedding Ceremony) - Kandel's Orchestra
6. Uwiedziona Dziewczyna (The Cheated Girl) - Franciszek Dukli Wiejska Banda

RECORD TWO

SIDE A
1. False Hearted Lover's Blues - Dock Boggs
2. Madam Young, Donnez Moi Vôtre Plús Jolie Blond (Madam Young, Give Me Your Sweetest Blonde) - Dennis McGee & Sady Courville
3. Kolomyika Buczacka (Kolomyika from Buczack) - Michael Thomasa
4. Obertana z Molodom (Hoedown with the Bride) - Bratia Orkiestra "Holatiky
5. I Went to See My Sweetheart - Lewis McDaniel & Gid Smith
6. Two Step de Maman (Mama's Two Step) - Amédé Ardoin & Dennis McGee
SIDE B

1. La Valse La Prison (The Prison Waltz) - Douglas Bellard & Kirby Riley
2. Hutzulka w Semerczyni (Hutzulka From Semerczyni) - Ukrainska Orchestra Michala Tomasa
3. Marusia (Little Mary) - Ukrainska Selska Orchestra
4. Vous M'avez Donne Vôtre Parole (You Gave Me Your Word) - Dennis McGee & Sady Courville
5. She Lied to Me - Emry Arthur
6. L'Abandonnér (The Forsaken) - Montet & Dupuis

RECORD THREE

SIDE A
1. Tanec Husar (Hussar Dance) - Michael Thomasa
2. Wesilny Kozak (Wedding Breakdown) - Ukrainska Selska Orchestra
3. Cyganske Vesilia (A Gypsy Wedding Pt. 3) - Stefana Shkimby i Cyganska Orchestra
4. Cyganske Vesilia (A Gypsy Wedding Pt. 4) - Stefana Shkimby i Cyganska Orchestra
5. Chernovitzer Bulgar (Dance From Chernovitz) - Broder Kapelle
6. Po Cos Dziewce Powiedziala (Girl, Why Did You Tell?) - Muzyka Karola Stocha Góralska Orchestra

SIDE B

1. Too Late - Stoneman Family
2. Quelqu'un Est Jalous (Someone is Jealous) - Guillory & LaFleur
3. Prydany - Pawlo Humeniuk, Ewgene Zukowsky, Rosa Krasonowska
4. Holubka Polka - Ukrainska Selska Orchestra
5. Never Let the Same Bee That Stung You, Sting You Twice - Richard
6. One Step a Marie (Mary's One - Step)

Cool... and nice Robert Crumb's artwork.


Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Danley SH-LPM Floor Monitor: can an industry standard, stage monitor give Hi-End performance at home?




... reportedly... YES!




Just read the following:

Danley Sound Labs gave me a few products for the Road Test, one of them being the SH-LPM Floor Monitor.

Let me start by saying........WOW!

Lets look at the specs. The box is about 13.5 X 21.5X18" It weighs in at 41 pounds, not too heavy for a single person to move easily around the stage, or into a case.

The box is stated at 60Hz - 20 kHz =/- 3 dB. It uses an 8" COAX (Yes you read that correct, I said 8") mounted on a horn. Its rated at 300 watts continuous and 600 program. It is passive and has a built in x-over. The box features 2 Speakon NL4s on each side hidden inside the handle for ins and outs.

It is covered with a nice textured Polyurea paint, and features a heavy grill, backed by a special fabric instead of foam. The folks at Danley tell me that it keeps the rain out, unlike ordinary foam that can soak up moisture.

Overall, it is one nice looking box. It has rounded corners, and everyone that used the box commented on how nice it looked. (and sounded!)

http://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e97/soundguyCraig/DanleyMon.jpg

Here is a pic of the side showing the connectors.

http://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e97/soundguyCraig/DanleyMonside.jpg

It not only looks nice, but it sounds GREAT! I am a big fan of coaxial speakers, especially wedges. For the kind of gigs I do (corporates, vocalists, jazz, country, bluegrass, acoustic, folk, world, etc) I think a coax is the perfect choice. They are usually smaller in size than a 2 or 3 way box, and they don't have that "horn honk" that a lot of boxes seem to have with a seperate horn, especially when you stand off to the side.

I'm also a big fan of passive wedges. I like being able to run a speaker off 1 side of an amp, and not having to run a separate power cable and signal cable to powered wedges.

First, I tried the box in the shop. I powered it up with a QSC RMX850 (my standard monitor amp). The boxes will take more power, but for the majority of gigs I do, an 850 is enough.

Right out of the box the speaker sounded great and I had plenty of volume. I played some music and used a mic and a sweep generator to test the box. Very impressive with no EQ. The box starts to lose low end at around 60Hz, but thats plenty low enough for me. I usually roll off the bottom end of my wedges between 80-100 anyway.

I took the grill off of one of the boxes so you can see the nice waveguide.

http://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e97/soundguyCraig/DanleyMonfront.jpg

I took the boxes out to a few gigs. The first one was a corporate jazz band playing for a reception. Normally I would have used a few of my Ramsdell 10" Coax boxes on this type of gig, so this was a good comparison for me.

While the boxes are a bit bigger than my small 12" cube Ramsdells, they are not too big for a small gig like this. They look nice and clean, and even the event planner commented on how good they looked with the rounded corners.

I placed one box in front for the female singer, and used the other box as a sax/vocal wedge. The sax player commented on how nice and smooth his sax sounded. The female vocalist liked the wedge as well. She said she liked how "natural" her voice sounded in the wedge. To be honest, her voice might have sounded "natural" in the wedge, but that's because I did a ton of EQing to get her thin voice to sound full!

The sax guy was really tall, so the wedge angle seemed a bit low for him. No problem, as I carry some "Acoustic Aiming Devices" with me to every gig (blocks of wood painted black). A 2X4 positioned under the wedge gave me the angle I wanted.

I didn't use any EQ in the wedges, except I took a bit of one frequency out of the lead vocalists wedge because I was worried about feedback.

One thing I really liked about the box were the recessed connectors on each side.

The next day I used the wedges as backstage monitors for a general session. My wedges also have stand adapter so I can use them as delays, fills, etc and it gives me another mounting choice other than floor placement. The Danleys are dedicated wedges so I had to be creative. I put one on it's side on top of a roadcase and used it as a monitor for some clients backstage so they could hear the program.

I put the other wedge on the floor next to the wireless rack so the crew could hear what was happening onstage as they got the lav mics clipped to the presenters.

I also used the wedges at a small company event where I provided a system for a DJ after the presentation. The SH-LPM became the DJ's monitors.

Last week I did an arts education concert at a school. Different Broadway singers performed accompanied by a pianist. At the end, they performed a few songs together as a chorus. I placed one wedge at each downstage corner and used some Acoustic Aiming Devices to steepen the angle. Then I used them more as "sidefills" than wedges. I think I had 2 small cuts in the EQ for feedback control, not tone.



The Pros:
* Great sounding box
* Great looking box
* Speakons on both sides
* Water resistant material behind grill

The Cons:
* only 1 wedge angle (easily adjusted with Acoustic Aiming Devices)


Thanking Craig Leerman for his essay...


P.S. - Sure - IMO - much better is the Danley's Sinergy Horn...


Sunday, June 2, 2013