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 Eddie Kramer

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MessageSujet: Eddie Kramer    Lun 12 Juil 2010 - 18:58

Jimi Hendrix remembered by Eddie Kramer


What was Jimi really like behind the wild man of rock image?

"He was great. He was one of the funniest guys I ever worked with, too. He was always taking the piss out of me, Mitch [Mitchell, drums] and Noel [Redding, bass], and himself. He had a lot of self-deprecating humour. And he was fast. He had an acerbic sense of humour – very cutting.

"Besides that, he was a very shy guy and he could only open up to you once he trusted you. I got as close as I could – as close as anybody could – in a working relationship. He trusted me, and I admired him and what he did so much that I was just really happy to be part of the crew."

Does that mean Jimi deliberately cut himself off from others when he wasn't working?

"Well, he was very private in that sense. His private life was his private life. I wasn't involved in that. This was a man who kept himself to himself… although he did have lots of girlfriends. He had a very active social life! My relationship with him stopped outside the studio door, to a certain degree.

"There were a couple of times when he was very friendly to me. If you go to my website, there's a gallery of my photography. There's this great picture of [Mick] Jagger and Jimi sitting backstage at Madison Square Garden. Jimi called me up – it was his birthday – and said, 'Come on, The Stones are playing Madison Square Garden!' So he picked me up and I dragged my camera along. It was a gesture that I never forgot; Jimi being very friendly.

"But, like I said, that was the exception rather than the rule. Our relationship was a very close one in the studio because we collaborated on lots of different sounds. He would come up with a sound on his amp and then I would re-interpret it in the control room. And he'd go, 'Wow! That was cool!' then run back out and try to top what I did. It was just some really friendly and inspiring competition."

Jimi was a very natural musician, but how aware was he of music theory – was he schooled in any way?

"I think one has to think about him as being one of those creatures that God had given this amazing talent. One of the most wonderful, gifted musicians… I mean, probably the greatest guitar player of the last 50 years, that's for sure. Definitely the greatest guitar player I've ever worked with." [And Kramer has worked with Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck and Eric Clapton.]

"Having said that, I would say his natural ability expanded into other areas. He listened to classical music, jazz… he was influenced by the many sounds around him. He just absorbed everything around him. He always said that his music had a much larger capacity – for strings and all that sort of stuff. He was thinking about a larger palette."

Was he different in the studio?

"Yes. Jimi was in charge in the studio, there was no question about that. Yes, shy and self-effacing; that was the character that was presented to the general public. But he was a thinker, too. He really did think deeply and I think that he was affected by the politics of the time, which was obviously reflected directly in his music. But he was very much in charge in the studio.

"The relationship with Chas [Chandler, Jimi's manager and producer of his first two albums] changed during the recording of Electric Ladyland. Jimi became very much in charge. This was Jimi's album. This was Jimi's session. And from that point on it was Jimi in charge. He had a very clear vision of what he wanted.

"Except for one period during 1969 where I think he was a little bit lost. I think he was trying to find something new and I wasn't with him. Nobody was with him. He wasn't under any kind of supervision. He was just jamming incessantly in the Record Plant. They just ran tape, which was fortunate, but at the same time I think he was a little bit lost. He was trying to find whatever the new musical direction was for him. But that's part of an artist's growth, to do that experimentation."

However, he often turned to you for certain effects in the studio…

"Jimi would walk into the studio, have his amp set up and start playing, and I would hear something and immediately I would start manipulating the sound; try to make it better or different, or try to be creative with it. I think what he appreciated was the fact that I wouldn't just stick a mic up and hope for the best. We were experimenting – I was young! We were the same age, in fact.

"But, at the same time, we were dabbling in areas that had never been tried before, like stereo flanging. Every day we were trying something new, because we didn't have much technology at our disposal. We had tape delay, EQ, reverb and that was pretty much it. There wasn't much out there at the time. It was how you placed the mics, how you used the room, a little bit of a Leslie effect, a little bit of flanging. The flanging thing was a revelation for Jimi.

"Every day was a nice challenge. In English studios we only had four tracks, whereas in the States they had eight. We were so jealous of the Americans, so we had to be really creative. How do you get eight tracks? Well, you take a 4-track machine and another 4-track machine, record your first four, then you make a mix of the four and dump that onto the second machine, so you end up going four groups of four to four new tracks. That forced you to be careful with your mix, because the mix that you did was your final mix.

"So every step of the way, it forced you to be very creative and to get your sounds right there. Today it's the opposite: you leave everything wide open and then you make a decision.

"Each successive generation of young kids I've watched over the last 25-30 years, who's the guitar player they go to first? They go to Jimi every time. He's the man. You can't help but be influenced by him."

Source: http://www.musicradar.com/news/guitars/jimi-hendrix-week-eddie-kramer-remembers-177498



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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Lun 12 Juil 2010 - 18:59

Un entretien d'Eddie Kramer avec Denise Sullivan datant du 14/08/2009 :

Crawdaddy!: Did you know that Jimi was going to pull off that version of “The Star-Spangled Banner” the way he did?
Kramer: He’d done it before. I knew there was a specific sequence of events that would signal this was coming up. There’s a bit of a jam, and he launches into his massive feedback thing, and the band doesn’t play. Mitch plays some drum rolls and then he stops. With Jimi, I kind of expected the unexpected.
Crawdaddy!: Did you speak with him about what he wanted to get across by performing the national anthem in his own unique way that day?
Kramer: No, never. Jimi was very circumspect about that sort of thing.
Crawdaddy!: Do you think it would be accurate to say, at that point in his career, there was a political identity trying to emerge?
Kramer: I would say you are very close. When you think about where Jimi’s head was at, he’d spoken about his feelings about the war, and he was totally anti-war. The best thing he could really do to make an impression was to play something that was memorable. That was a very searing performance, very heartfelt. One of the reasons it stands up today is that it’s brilliant—from a musical aspect, from an emotional aspect, and technically. He’s making a statement and it was, “Hey, I’m anti-war.” He did it in a few songs—he did it with “Machine Gun”, which was violently anti-war. He was a political animal.
Crawdaddy!: When I watch the Woodstock film of Jimi’s set, I feel disturbed by the way they cut the performance with the crowd exiting and the trash-strewn ground…
Kramer: When I first saw the rushes of the movie in 1970 and I looked at that, I was actually very disappointed in the way it was portrayed. Maybe disappointed is the wrong word… I felt that it was a beginning and an end to a particular era. As far as Jimi was concerned, I felt exactly as you were just saying.
(...)
Crawdaddy!: I like to ask people of authority where they think Jimi might’ve taken his music had he lived. Some say he was moving into jazz, others say more traditional…
Kramer: He would not have gone in a jazz direction. However, let me say this: Jimi was a musical sponge. He absorbed every music, whether it be classical, rock, pop, blues, country, it didn’t matter. To say that it would be jazz specifically would not really be the truth, because all this music would somehow filter through his brain and turn into something else. The direction very clearly indicated to me that he was at a crossroads. He was utilizing a lot of R&B, blues, and funk. That’s where I saw it. And what I did see was the possibility of using some horns, that kind of thing. I’m not sure you can make an argument for jazz. I see that as a minor collaboration on a couple of tracks, but not a distinct direction.
Crawdaddy!: Did you two ever talk about the Curtis Mayfield sound and what he’d learned from it?
Kramer: One has to remember my relationship with Jimi Hendrix was a very professional one. We were close in the studio, but beyond that, not really. For instance, if he went to a concert or was hanging out at a gig or if Albert King was playing, maybe he would mention it. Or if he was going to hang out with Curtis, maybe he would mention it. He never talked to me directly about the artists who interested him. You have to remember this: Jimi Hendrix had his own sound. He would never say, "Make me sound like…" It was enough work for me just to get his stuff on tape rather than reinterpret it to get him to sound like something else.
(...)
Crawdaddy!: How did you feel about the San Francisco Sound?
Kramer: At the time, frankly, I was not big fan of the music. I thought it was a bit un-together—I thought Santana was terrific, but some of the other bands… nyah… I was not a big fan of the loosey-goosey style of music. If you were going to be loosey-goosey or free, you had to have a really good background. You listen to Jimi’s playing as a comparison. Jimi was together, he wanted to jam, as opposed to some of the other bands that would try to jam but were very un-together—out of tune, out of time, not listening to each other. Whereas Jimi was a disciplinarian and you’d better be listening to what he’s doing if you’re a musician in his band. Ah, they’re giving me the signal it’s time to go.

Source : http://crosstowntorrents.org/showthread.php?t=1996



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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Lun 12 Juil 2010 - 18:59

Un chat avec Eddie Kramer (en 2001) :

Washington,Pa.: Has there been any other music found,that has never been published?

Eddie Kramer: Since we've been working on the Hendrix material for 5 years, we've found enough unreleased material to do a new record a year for 12 years.

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Newtown, CT: Given the extraordinary nature of the Band of Gypsys concerts, why would a two disk set be released instead of the entire concert, or at least the entire 3rd concert, Hendrix fans are dying for complete sound boards of his stuff.

Eddie Kramer: Basically because we felt we'd issued the "best of" those shows. There is some thought to maybe releasing some of the other material later on, but it's not our primary consideration at this point. I think one has to look to Jimi's input, and since I rough mixed these series of shows with him sitting next to me, I was painfully aware of his trepidation about SOME of the excesses of the show, and he wanted it edited down a particular way. We re-released with the best of that series of shows, but there's more in the can. It's just a question of when we release it.

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phoenix, arizona: while Jimi was a creative genius and guitar virtuoso, was there an intellectual side to him that the public does not know about? What did he read, for instance?

Eddie Kramer: Jimi was a musical sponge, and I often remember going up to his hotel room to deliver tapes and spying Bach, Handel and Mozart on the player. He got inspiration from the stuff. I know he loved science fiction, but as far as deeply intellectual books, I'm not sure. The only person who'd know is Chaz Chandler.

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Albany, GA - Jeff: First of all it is amazing to me and an honor to able to ask someone like yourself a question concerning Jimi. Please correct me if I am wrong in my assumption, but the image that Jimi potrayed throughout his career was very anti-establishment. Do you think Jimi would approve of his music being used today in order to sale cars or any other products? And secondly is this just a chance for those in charge of the Hendrix estate to cash in and milk Jimi's legacy for all that it is worth. To me it just cheapens everything that Jimi put his heart and soul into. Thanks for your time.

Eddie Kramer: This is tought to answer. The question should be directed to Janie Hendrix and not to me. She's best qualified to answer.

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Vancouver, BC, Canada: Eddie, my pleasure to ask you this: What would Jimi have been doing for the past 30 years, had he lived and how would it have affected music today? Jazz fusion? Classical? Rock? and what were Jimi's influences, if any? Thanks very much! Scott

Eddie Kramer: Here's my take: He'd probably be the president of his own record label. He'd be directing movies. He'd have absorbed some of the hip-hop dance techniques, sampling. Since he was such a maverick and leader and well ahead of his time, he would have been ahead of the curve before hip-hop even occured! Certainly jazz and fusion were part of his vocabulary, but classical music and hearing his own music performed by a large orchestra were also possibilities.

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Johnson City, Tennessee: There was reportedly something of a rivalry between Jimi and The Who's Pete Townshend. How much of that was fact and how much was just media hype? Also, which of Jimi's guitar contemporaries did he most respect?

Eddie Kramer: He liked Clapton, and Clapton revered him to the point of wanting to give up playing after hearing him the first time! Jeff Beck, too. As far as a rivalry between him and Townsend, I've never heard it before.

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Chicago, IL: Did Jimi ever tell you which of his performances he enjoyed giving the most?

Eddie Kramer: We worked very closely on remixing the Band of Gypsys, and he was of two minds about that. He loved Buddy Miles, but at the same time Buddy tried to grab center stage which was a no-no. I think we've culled the best of that.

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Memphis,Tn: I've seen pictures of Jimi playing around with the organ and drums. Did he ever do play those instruments on record?

Eddie Kramer: Not organ, but he did play harpsichord on Electric Ladyland, and he was pretty good on the piano. Drums he would play on demos, but not actually on a finished product. He sounded a bit like Stevie Wonder on drums.

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El Cajon,CA: Were all of the recording sessions a big "event" or,were some more subdued w/less spectators?

Eddie Kramer: None were subdued! Jimi had an acerbic sense of humor. He'd make self-deprecating jokes (myself and Noel). In the beginning, Chaz Chandler was fairly strict about how many people he'd allow in the studio (he didn't like all the hangers-on). Never a dull moment on any Hendrix session. Some were quieter than others for sure. In the Electric Ladyland period there were a fair number of hangers-on, and I'd have to throw them out.

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Memphis, TN: Does Alan Douglas (God rest his soul (as soon as he dies, that is)) have any material he refuses to release to the Hendrix family?

Eddie Kramer: You should ask Mr. Douglas or Janie Hendrix. I refuse to think about him.

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Chicago, Illinois: What is the "true" mix of early Hendrix albums? My understanding is that Hendrix recorded for the mono mixes on Are You Experienced and Axis: Bold as Love, and then a stereo mix was completed afterward. I've heard similar stories about Beatles, Rolling Stones, and Pink Floyd albums. If so, did you do the later stereo mixes as well?

Eddie Kramer: Here's the story: Everything was recorded on 4 tracks. Therefore, the first mixes would have been in stereo. The second were in mono, and there were two separate mixes. If you want the mono mixes, Are You Experienced is available in vinyl from Classic Records.

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Mountain View, Wyoming: Have you worked with any guitarist since Hendrix that you feel has brought the innovation and power to Rock Guitar that Jimi did?

Eddie Kramer: Absolutely not! Some have come close, but no one can take the mantle away from him.

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Memphis, TN: Have you been to the Experience Music Project in Seattle and, whether you have or not, what are your thoughts on it?

Eddie Kramer: Yes I have, and it's a fascinating building. I happen to like Frank Gehry's stuff. Does it work as an exhibition of import? The jury is still out. I enjoyed my time there, and I think the Hendrix portion of the museum is the most fascinating, bearing in mind Paul Allen's love of Jimi Hendrix. However, there are some inaccuracies which I'm hoping to correct with the help of the museum and its staff.

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Memphis, TN: Are there any plans to release "Rainbow Bridge" or "Cry Of Love" on CD?

Eddie Kramer: I think I mentioned we have tons of material to release, and we want to take the time and effort to release only the best. If it includes those two albums, we may. Cry of Love and Rainbow have been released in essence. To any fan out there: Please be patient. Only the good stuff will survive.

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Minneapolis, MN: Legend has it that you have one of the few copies of "Black Gold," the autobiographical song suite that Jimi recorded right before his death. Is this true?

Eddie Kramer: No, I personally don't have anything belonging to Jimi. I believe that family has it.

Source : http://cgi1.usatoday.com/mchat/20010507001/tscrïpt.htm



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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Sam 13 Nov 2010 - 10:47

Eddie you are well known for your recording work on legendary projects with Jimi Hendrix. And in recent years you’ve been going back to the original masters and producing a stream of new releases. It’s almost as if the recording hasn’t stopped.

It’s a continuing saga. If one puts into perspective the fact that Jimi lived in the studio – when he wasn’t on the road and when he wasn’t sleeping he was in the studio – he was a workaholic – and the four years that we worked together produced an enormous volume of material some of which is just coming to light. This year we were very fortunate. We had a huge success with an album called Valleys Of Neptune which shot up the charts like we couldn’t believe. It was unexpected that it was going to be that successful. And essentially, that’s material that has been in the vaults for quite some time and in most cases had not even been released. The last year and a half we have been working on an enormous project which is coming out this month. It’s an anthology called “West Coast Seattle Boy” and it’s four CDs basically tracing Jimi’s musical path from the very very beginning. It’s fascinating. The first CD is Jimi as a side man playing with people like Little Richard, and the Isley Brothers and it’s just amazing to hear him trying to burst through the tracks. So you can hear the beginnings of Jimi’s sound starting to appear on the first CD, and then it goes through the very first albums all the way to the very end. And it includes some remarkable recently discovered gems of Jimi playing acoustic guitar and a very light electric guitar in his apartment, and in his hotel room with his own tape machine and his own microphone – just recording demos for Electric Lady Land. There’s a STUNNING – absolute Stunning version of a Bob Dylan song called “Tears of Rage “which he had never recorded. It puts the hair on the back of your head straight up, because it’s such a visceral performance. There’s also a two-hour documentary DVD so the whole package is quite phenomenal.

Can you tell us about your recent project at Electric Lady Studios?

We came to Electric Lady Land Studios to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the construction of the studio and that week we were in there mixing some cool material. I can’t really tell you what the project is but it’s very exciting and there is a movie involved. It’s premature to talk about it, but suffice to say it is one of the greatest performances that Jimi has ever done on film.

What was it like to be in the studio with Jimi Hendrix and record him?

One of the interesting things on the four-CD box set is that you get this insight into how he liked to work. You get to hear the germ of a song where you hear it for the first time all the way through the first tracking sessions and each of the outtakes. You can hear how each performance gets better and better. He was a perfectionist – he was demanding – he was absolutely in control of his instrument and the direction that he’d go to get the sound - that’s for sure. And because of his mastery of tone, mastery of the technical aspects of playing guitar, which to him was like breathing I guess, it was easy for him to create sounds that were just nonexistent in anybody else’s mind (laughs.) And so of course when I hear that stuff for the first time on the floor of the studio I’m going “how on earth am I going to be able to record this man?” And then you have to come up with new and different ways of recording him and trying to preserve the dynamic range – trying to make sure that the power of the amplifier is not dampened in any way but rather enhanced. And then of course all of the effects that we decided to bring to bear because Jimi was wonderful at encouraging us to let it all fly. And Chas Chandler, God bless him, who was Jimi’s producer, Chas said this marvelous thing to us in the very beginning – he said “The rules are, there are no rules.” And we took that to heart and obviously it opened up the flood gates for us. You know we had very limited technology available to us. We were recording 4-track half-inch in those days, because we had to mix everything from the first four track down to the two tracks of another four track, and then fill that up, and THEN bounce it back to the FIRST four track. So there was a lot of stereo mixing going on and you had to make damn sure that your mixes were really accurate. And we were only able to use things like compression, eq and reverb. There wasn’t much that we had, but what we had we put to good use.

And hearing the tracks today you recorded so long ago, do they surprise you? Do they sound as you remember them or different to you, listening using new technology?

Yeah – that’s one of the interesting things - The Valleys of Neptune record sounds to most people like it was recorded yesterday and I think it’s a tribute to the way we recorded in those days. I was able to dig into the tapes and really enhance and improve upon the actual sound so if the original sound was good, I was able to make it even better. I gave it a more full-bodied sound. I was able to improve some of the dynamics. Of course this is made possible by new technologies and equipment. I can hear tremendous detail in the JBL monitors I’m using. I am very happy with my speakers because they give me the detail that I need – particularly in the high-end. They’re not fatiguing to the ears which is really cool, so I am able to tell where certain instruments are in the stereo image. That to me is really critical because I do a lot of very careful placement and a lot of panning. I think JBL is really doing it right these days.

Source : http://www.guitarplayer.com/article/123111

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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Sam 13 Nov 2010 - 18:44

Mais quel genre de matériel mixait donc Eddie à l'Electric Lady ?? RAH, Miami Pop Festival, Berkeley 70 ?
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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Jeu 18 Nov 2010 - 10:04

Kramer ne répond pas à ta question dans cette nouvelle interview (alors que Janie Hendrix annonce la couleur pour 2011 et 2012) :

MOJO: A previous box set, The Jimi Hendrix Experience, came out in 2000. Why another one?
Eddie Kramer: The "purple box" was the first one and was excellent and still stands up. But from that time till now, there was quite a lot going on, not only in the music industry but certainly with the Experience Hendrix family and myself and my engineering and the way I approach things. We were fortunate that this year we were able to put out Valleys Of Neptune, that did incredibly well. And in the process of putting that together we'd be mining the vaults and we would always find stuff and say, Ya know, let's put this aside. Also, I think the chronological order [of the new box] really emphasises Jimi's growth as a guitar player. From the start, when he was struggling to get his sound heard within the strictness of the R&B sessions to the times when he just breaks through and becomes this freewheeling spirit all the way to the very end. I think we've tracked it in a very easy-to-understand way.

40 years after his death, Jimi never sounds dated, always sounds fresh.
That is exactly the reaction we got from Valleys of Neptune. People were saying, Wow, it sounds like it could've been recorded yesterday. It reflects upon a) the musician and the genius of Jimi Hendrix and b) hopefully I've been able to add something from an interpretive point of view with all the modern weapons of technology that I have at my disposal now, the best of analogue and digital. I'm able to dig in rather deeply into the sonics of Jimi and enhance, improve and focus the clarity of what he was playing and what the rhythm section was doing. With that experience behind us, the same principles were applied to West Coast Seattle Boy. Jimi's music has always sounded fresh to each successive generation, young kids who are coming up. Who are they gonna to go to? If you're 12 or 13, picking up a guitar, listening to guitar players, you go, I think this Hendrix guy would be the one I go to. [laughs]

Let's talk about Jimi's work habits. He was legendary for doing an extraordinary number of takes.
I don't think it was extraordinary. Any great musician, I don't care whether it's Hendrix or Clapton or Zeppelin or the Stones, you're gonna find those days or evenings or mornings [laughs], where it's just not coming together and it will take all night and 40 takes. But then there'll be some nights where you can nail it in two takes. Voodoo Chile's a classic example. That was done in one rehearsal, one take essentially.

Was Jimi a perfectionist?
Yes, he was a perfectionist, but why was he such a perfectionist? There were many reasons and the first one would be the discipline that was given to him at an early age. His father was pretty strict. Although Al Hendrix, who I knew for a good many years, was a sweetheart of a guy, I guess he was pretty tough on Jimi in the beginning. Then he gets into the army and you couldn't ask for more discipline than that, being a paratrooper. He comes out of the army and goes straight into the next level of discipline where he's on the Chitlin' Circuit and part of a band and you've got to perform as if you're part of a team. In those days, when he was playing for Little Richard and the Isley Brothers, they wouldn't give an inch. If you move a certain way out of sync with the band, you're gonna get fined five dollars - in the early '60s a lot of bloody money to a starving musician. [Then] he comes to London with Chas Chandler, a disciplinarian of a different kind. Chas comes from the pop world where you have exactly three hours in which to get the damn song down on tape and we better get it right - and we'd get two, three songs in the three hours. So when it came time for the first recording sessions, Jimi had to knuckle down and - instead of a 24-bar solo - he'd have to figure out how to make that solo in a pristine 8-bar sequence. There in essence is the guy who would - as sales of the records increased and he's got more time in the studio - [take] more time to make sure the tracks were perfect in his mind. You can make the same assumption about any artist worth his salt - Picasso, Vermeer. They're never satisfied with the end product.

On the box, there are the hotel/apartment tapes. Even when Jimi is alone with his guitar and he's demoing, his playing is orchestral, as if he's working out the arrangement before the proper recording.
This is part of this whole work ethic that we're talking about. We mentioned Voodoo Chile earlier on. On the surface it would seem it's a jam. Yes, it is a jam. However it's a jam that is incredibly well prepared. It's something Jimi's been thinking about for weeks on end, putting it all together, making his demos, going to The Scene club around the corner from the studio and picking through the musicians. The guys who are going to be playing and jamming with him on stage, he'll make the notes in his head about who's the cool guy on organ and cool guy on bass. He had his pick of some of the greats: Steve Winwood, Jack Casady. He marches them round to the studio at one o'clock in the morning, we're ready. Everything's prepped, they plug in, rehearse one time, one take, goodnight. But it took weeks of mental and physical preparation by Jimi and this is the same thing you're hearing in the hotel/apartment tapes. It's Jimi preparing for Electric Ladyland and this is the homework. He was always prepared.

The track Messenger blows my mind. It feels like an indication of where Jimi was heading had he not passed away.
That's part of it, it's not the whole story. It's an indicator of a direction. Jimi was on a path that had reached an intersection and at that intersection was horns, extra percussion, strings, woodwinds. I could see him doing a big score at some point. He was getting a little funkier but that was just a temporary thing. When you look at the end of '69, going into '70, the Cry Of Love album, which shows all of the signs of what's going to happen potentially in the future. That's the key right there.

Much has been made of the Black Gold tape by Hendrix aficionados.
Oy vay. It's not the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. What's more important is what's coming up in the future. There's a whole bunch of stuff that we've been working on for the last few years that's gonna come out next year. All I can tell you is that it's pretty damn cool stuff. I will say there's a movie - some moving images - some concert footage.

And you can't say any more?
Nope! [laughs]

Source : http://www.mojo4music.com/blog/2010/11/jimi_hendrix_shows_his_roots.html

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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Jeu 18 Nov 2010 - 18:22

Quel con ! Twisted Evil
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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Ven 21 Jan 2011 - 13:56

Un entretien de l'époque de la sortie de Valleys Of Neptune dans lequel Kramer reconnaît utiliser la technologie moderne pour retravailler le son des enregistrements d'époque.

Eddie Kramer VON Interview 2010
Engineer Eddie Kramer makes some "new" Hendrix from old tapes

"Valleys of Neptune" is a revelation for the ears

Posted by Mark C. Brown Monday, March 08, 2010 4:59:41 PM

Eddie Kramer understands fans might be suspicious when “new” Jimi Hendrix recordings are released. After the guitarist’s death in 1970 all sorts of things were released, some unfinished, some overdubbed by musicians Hendrix never met, some simply sub-par that should have stayed in the vault. Bootleggers completed the picture by leaking and selling anything they could get their hands on. Even the “new” unreleased title song, “Valleys of Neptune,” has been long available on the black market (though not this version, a professionally mixed combo of two takes a year apart that sound incredible).
The studio album “Valleys of Neptune” is in stores March 9, and is also streaming on MSN. Besides unreleased tracks, including two instrumentals, it has loose, jamming reworkings of Hendrix classics like “Stone Free,” “Fire” and “Red House.”
“I think the fans are going to love this – Jimi at his most relaxed,” said Kramer, who produced and mixed the album. “These are versions of these songs that nobody has ever heard, certainly not in this way. They sound fresh; it sounds like it was recorded yesterday.”
Kramer took a few minutes to talk about the newly found tape and what Hendrix was like to work with in the studio.


What was happening in Jimi’s personal and musical life at the time?
“1969 is where most of this material came from. If one looks back at the previous year, ’68, it was a phenomenal year for Jimi – … you’ve got a huge success, you’ve done three albums “Electric Ladyland” being the last one, a very far-reaching album that expresses Jimi’s control and command of what he wants to do. Now he’s got to follow it with something at least as good if not better. Jimi was the sort of person who was always looking to expand his musical horizons. Basically for the year of ’69 was experimenting, trying different arrangements of songs, different musicians, experimenting an awful lot with sounds. It was a year of change for him. If one took a negative view one could call it a little bit unsettling, sort of meandering. I don’t think that. I think the opposite. This was the year that Jimi decided to rehearse, jam, record, try different formulas to come up with something. I think he did find it. … You can hear the Experience – three guys, Noel (Redding), Mitch (Mitchell)) and Jimi – recording in February of ’69 at the Olympic Studios. They were prepping for the Royal Albert Hall show but recorded a bunch of stuff. It’swonderful material because you get to hear the last time the Experience are ever going to record as the Experience. It’s live on the floor of the studio. There are no overdubs. It’s just remarkable performances. The band is on fire, not to use a pun. It’s remarkable how great the band sounds. Jimi is having the time of his life. He’s relaxed, he’s throwing jokes around… you can definitely hear it in the performances.”

Had his previous success given him some breathing room?
“Breathing room? I’m not sure I’d go that far. But the fact that he didn’t’ have many gigs that year in ’69. If you looked at the musical curve from the beginning of ‘69 to the end, when the experience changes, i.e., Noel leaves the band, Jimi has to come up with a new bass player. He calls on his old friend Billy Cox, who was with him in the Army. The moment he joins the band there is a shift in the musical direction, which is very patently obvious. It becomes much more blues/R&B direction. If you jump ahead to August of ’69 there was a small festival in upstate New York where a few people showed up. I recorded that and Jimi announces the Band of Gypsies. It’s an expended band with Mitch, with Billy, a guitar player, percussion, all that. He’s experimenting. He’s trying to figure out ‘What is it, what is this next music of mine going to be?’ If you go further ahead to the end of the year you have the Band of Gypsies with Billy Cox and Buddy Miles and the Fillmore East. That sort of closes out, if you will, the very, very heavy-duty blues R&B rock vibe. Fabulous album, does really well, but it was an album he owed Capitol from a legal standpoint.”

So where does “Valleys of Neptune” fit in all that?
“The 'Valleys of Neptune' for me is a fabulous album because it’s a window into what he was thinking. This has all the potential of being an album; it could have been an album. Maybe not fully and totally realized but certainly a direction to go in.”

When you listen to these tapes do you actually remember the sessions you recorded or do things come as a surprise to you?
“That’s a very intriguing question. When we first got hold of these tapes a few years back – we got these from Chas (Chandler) – I remember when John (McDermott of Experience Hendrix) first played me one of the transfers I went ‘Wow, this is fascinating stuff.’ … When I listened to these tapes it was a bit of a revelation in the sense that here’s this material, some of which I remembered recording, some of which I was in the distant, dim, dark reaches of my mind. But when you hear Jimi’s voice and my voice going back and forth, talking to each other, making jokes, he’s taking the piss out of me and I am out of him, he’s winding up Mitch and Noel – it’s great. It’s fun stuff. I realized what a wonderfully close working relationship we had. It was very exciting. I remembered some bits of it, other bits I didn’t. In the past week I’ve been working on more Hendrix material from that period and it’s incredibly fascinating to hear the interaction between Chas, myself and Jimi.

What about some of the older songs here?
“We had everything going back through ’67. ‘Mr. Bad Luck’ was a track I recorded in ’67 but it never fit on anything we were doing then. When we listened we said ‘You know what? this is a perfect song for this album.’ It fit perfectly.”

How would the Eddie Kramer of 1969 mixed this as compared to you today?
“Not much differently. With the advent of all the wonderful digital recording techniques that are at my disposal I’m able to extract a lot more information from the tapes. My job really is to bring Jimi’s sound to the front – and the whole band, of course- to make it as clear and as punchy and as contemporary sounding as possible without denying the past. I used all the very best analog gear I can get my hands on, tube gear, ancient wonderful stuff from the ‘60s and ‘70s. And I use Pro-Tools and a program called Waves, without which I could never have done some of the work I’ve been doing recently. I’m able to clear away some of the cobwebs and bring Jimi’s sound into focus.”

What were the limitations of the tapes? “Red House” is a great version but it just sort of ends. Was it hard to find full performances?

“There’s always a wealth of riches when it comes to Jimi’s material. It wasn’t difficult at all. The editing process was really a question of ‘OK, which take do we use?’ It’s patently obvious when you hear the tape and hear all the various takes which one is the best. It’s got an immediacy to it that’s undeniable.”

This has unreleased instrumentals like “Crying Blue Rain” and “Lullaby for the Summer.” Were those intended as instrumentals or are they unfinished songs?
“These are tracks that Jimi was experimenting with. I’m sure they would have had vocals at some point. ‘Valleys of Neptune,’ Jimi recorded the basic track for it in ’69 and then cut the track later on, a year later, and I married the two together. They’re identical. It’s unbelievable. Same key, same tempo, a year apart. That’s true genius.”

Everyone focuses on the guitar but Hendrix is a great singer – very fluid, improvising a lot onstage. How was he in the studio?

“The same way. The process would be the same. It would go through may iterations in terms of cutting the track, making sure the track was absolutely the best he could do, all the overdubs were precise. Then he would over a period of weeks put the lyrics together by looking at all of his notes, editing. The console would have his notebooks and his legal pad and he’d transfer stuff from his notes and make up the final lyric and try to sing it. Usually he nailed it on the first or second take, very quick. He didn’t mess around.”

After reading books by you and Geoff Emerick I have a better appreciation that the engineer is sometimes as creative as the artist. Do engineers get their due?
“I don’t really care. I do in one sense, but my job is to serve the artist. If I have done my job correctly then I have made what the artist wants and hears in his or her head, making it sound better. If I can do that I’ve done my job. I don’t look for any more glory.”

What was Hendrix’s view on his peers? He obviously loved Dylan and The Beatles, he worked with Stephen Stills and he liked Billy Gibbons.
“I think Jimi was interested in everything out there. Certainly his peers, he was fascinated by. Look at the history of what he did with other people’s material, from the Troggs all the way through Dylan. Obviously Dylan was a star in his mind. He used to carry a Bob Dylan songbook in his bag. He never mentioned to me anything about what he thought about other artists. I think he kept that to himself. He was very circumspect when it came to that sort of thing. But you can hear the influence. There’s no doubt in my mind that Jimi was influenced by everything. If a trash can fell over he’d be interested how that sounded.”

You’re working on the next installment as we speak. What can fans expect?
“I’d have to kill myself and kill everybody if I told you that. It’s wonderful. We have a wealth of material in the catalog, enough for at least 10 more years of releases. It’s fascinating stuff. We keep digging in and finding more stuff. We just can’t wait for the public to hear what we’re working on now.”

What is the archive like? Neat or scattered?
“We don’t like the word ‘scattered.’ That’s the anti-Christ word. We’re very organized, we have a wonderful library that’s well taken care of. We’ve been adding to it over the years and it’s pretty darn complete I’d say.”

What’s your take on the music industry these days? Brian Eno recently said that stars of the classic-rock era caught a lucky time in history when you could get rich off this stuff.
“I think Mr. Eno is correct for the most part. I was very fortunate enough to be there at the beginning of it. I was thinking about it the other day. I started in the music business at the end of ’61. Basically 48 years I’ve been in this bloody business. I’ve been fortunate enough to see it start and grow to this ridiculous height, then of course the bottom fell out. If one wants to cast blame I’m not so sure I’m in the blame game. … You can cast blame anywhere you want. The record companies were slow and stupid shortsighted, they didn’t get ton the download thing quick enough. Now look at it. The music business is in the toilet.”

Is there any upside?
“It’s also very interesting and challenging now because basically anybody can make a record. That in itself has its own problem. But I’d rather have a bunch of people struggling and trying to make a record. Admittedly, I’m a fan of producing and engineering and having good studios. I’m not a fan of doing it in the house where you could be sitting there for the next six months trying to find the next chord. That kind of music that needs to be played by four guys, four girls, 16 elephants, I don’t care – in a room, looking at each other with hatred, with love, with affection, it doesn’t matter. In fact the more hatred the better, I think. When you think about what happened with Lennon and McCartney, they were in each other’s faces all the time. There are always gonna be disagreements when you have creative people in the room. You’re gonna have to scream.”

What about musicians starting out today?
“If you believe in your music and you can play your instrument – that’s another thing, can you play the goddamn thing? Do you know how to keep it in tune? Can you actually play it well? Can you sing? Can you actually sing in tune? That’s another thing. The Grammys were quite a revealing, shall we say, a bit of a revelation as to what these singers are up to in the studio."


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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Mar 17 Mai 2011 - 22:10

Interview de 1997

Sound Signatures
: Eddie Kramer
A Slight Return Part II
By Chip Stern


Chip Stern: Jimi had a very symphonic concept of the guitar and sound in general. So technically, what do you think was the key advance in this final period? Obviously you have 16-track/two-inch hardware, but had the technology grown to meet Hendrix or had Hendrix grown to meet the technology?

EK: I think that 16-track was pretty well entrenched, but 24-track was coming down the pike pretty rapidly, so I wired the console for twenty-four, and I had 24 busses put in the console; had the tape machine wired for twenty-four—we were all ready to go for 24-track. But we didn’t have the head blocks and it wasn’t quite there. It didn’t come until 1971.

Don’t you think in moving from 16 to 24-track you maybe gained some flexibility but lost that immediacy of sound?

EK: Well, it’s obviously noisier, that’s for sure. Let’s just deal with what we had then, which was 16-tracks. We had a really well designed console in terms of its flexibility, in terms of what it could do for me in the control room. For 1970 we had a state of the art control room. I started this thing with racks. I had these racks built into the wall behind the console, made of steel, full of Pultecs and limiters and stuff.
The monitor system was very advanced. Four channels of monitoring, and a sophisticated control room built of steel and concrete and wood and plaster; it was very modern, like a spaceship—an environmental womb. And the lighting system, the acoustics, microphones—new mikes and vintage designs—tube equalizers, transistorized console, up-to-date tape machines. So it was really nice combo of vintage and state-of-the-art, and there was not another studio like it in the world, and for years from 1970 through the mid-70s people came to Electric Lady just to check it out—it was an influence. A lot of studios changed after that in the way it was designed for the artist—it wasn’t a box. So…innovative? Yeah, sure it was. The murals, and the way the whole office was set up, the vibe of the studio was very unique—this was Jimi’s home, the place he came to create. It was built for him, to serve his music. That’s what it was built for.

Is it true that the weekend he died he was due to come back that Monday and work in the studio with ?

That was in the works. That would have been very interesting. I spoke to him about a week before he died, and he called me. I was sitting in the control room. “When you come over, bring the tapes.” And I said, “Jimi, we just finished the studio, and now you want me to fly over with the tapes—can’t it wait?” And he said, “Yeah, I guess it could. I’ll see you in about a week.” And right after that he was talking to Chas about putting the original team back together, which was Chas, him and myself, because he wanted to get rid of Michael Jeffrey. He was at a crossroad. That’s why I think First Rays Of The New Rising Sun was a crossroads—because he was at a crossroads musically, and spiritually, and in every other way…in his personal life. He was looking for something, and I don’t think he’d quite found it. And I’ve said this before. If only he was given the flexibility of a year off, just to sort of contemplate his navel and look where he was going. He didn’t need to…[voice trails off]…

Well, in that sense he was the first modern rock star…

Oh the pressures on him were enormous. You had the record company pressuring Michael, pressuring Jimi…
They didn’t look at it as a long-term thing—they just wanted to milk him for everything they could in the short term.
So in retrospect, it was a tough time for him, and I could see why he wanted to change. Not that he didn’t want to come back…he did.
He wanted to come back and finish the record, but he was flip-flopping all the time. You got that sense that “I’d like to be here, but I really need to be there.”
I think he was tired of being on someone else’s string. I think he relished a lot of the things he did as a performer. I believe he did them because they came to him naturally—such as his flamboyance.
However, the flamboyance was something I feel that he felt trapped by. Because once you’ve done it, people want to see the same bullshit with the guitar between the legs, and biting the guitar and playing it with your teeth, and behind the back and setting it on fire, and he didn’t want to do that. He just wanted to stand there and play.

Well, like the way he played on the Capitol album, A Band Of GypsiesI mean, my God.

Tough. Great playing.

Well, you can never tell about these things. Jimi, Robert Johnson, Charlie Christian, Wes Montgomery and Coltrane—they’re forever young. Maybe it would have been a drag.

I kind of doubt it. Jimi had too much integrity.

Well, you know, I hear everything as jazz, or rather as it relates to jazz, from Brahms on up, but to me what became fusion would have been a much different thing had he lived.

Yes, but he influenced the fusion movement big time. Without him it never would have happened.

Well, you listen to what the purists refer to as Miles’ sell-out album Bitches Brew, and my God, it’s the most avant-garde thing on Earth. It’s got the static bass, but everything else is layer after layer of freedom, like Electric Ladyland—this big orchestral concept. That’s what I believe he was thinking about, and inevitably Jimi and Miles would have come together

Jimi’s orchestral concept is an interesting thing, because people are always asking, “Where was he going, and what would he have been doing?” Well, if you take First Rays Of The New Rising Sun as the last piece and springboard from there, that’s basically R&B/funk, slightly jazzy and whatever. There was a time period for Jimi when he needed to get back to those roots. It was also a combination of Band Of Gypsies and The Jimi Hendrix Experience: having Mitch in the band and Billy Cox in the band. So take that and figure where is he going to go from here? Jimi was talking with Gil Evans; we know that he heard his music in a larger format, as in strings and horns. Next step from there? A big orchestra. I tried to get somewhat of an idea of that in the album I did called In From The Storm, you know, the symphonic treatments of his music. In some ways, it’s okay, in other ways…without Jimi being there, it was tough, but a noble attempt nevertheless. I think Jimi would have enjoyed working with an orchestra.

You can hear all of that in his studio version of “The Star Spangled Banner.”

It’s purely orchestral. Absolutely. I totally agree with you. So who is to say where he would have gone. From my point of view, the jazz thing would have been such an easy slot for him to be in; to kick Miles’ ass and move that thing forward—and Miles would have kicked his ass, too, no question. But I think the two of them together would have been incredible.

To me Coltrane checked right out as Hendrix checked right in. To me the distance from “A Love Supreme” to “Manic Depression” is all in the blink of an eye. Same with Wes Montgomery—it’s no great stretch


Absolutely. Jimi loved Wes.

To me, all of these things would have come together in Jimi’s music, because like Bird, he wasn’t the type of musician to think in terms of hierarchies or distinctions, so he could have had an enormous…could have had, hey—his influence is enormous. Like Robert Johnson—forever young.

Would he have taken it to the next level? Absolutely. There was nothing that he couldn’t do, whether it had been in a fusion thing, or a continuation of the R&B/funk thing; or pop, which he loved; bits of country; the jazz thing and the classical thing—I see him as being totally open.

In terms of this whole project, how long had it been since you revisited any of this stuff from the level of a participant. Had you been completely out of the loop all this time in terms of Alan Douglas and his control of all the Hendrix CD releases?

I haven’t been involved in any of the Hendrix stuff for many, many years. And I always thought it was very strange that when they decided to do reissues, they never thought to call me, but it didn’t surprise me because Alan Douglas was in charge of all that—and nothing he did surprised me. So I was a huge supporter of the family’s, and wanted to make sure it was done right.
And John McDermott and I go back many, many years, and we’ve done those two books together, and John helped them during the trial, and I was very much on their side and anything I could do to help…hey, I was there. So finally, when the family won—and thank goodness they did—we became the guys in charge of putting the library back together. So we transferred everything digitally, and in analog, and protected the whole legacy, and we’ve been filling in the gaps ever since, and once the deal was consummated with MCA, we were asked to start putting the records together and start re-mastering. The idea here was to find the original masters.

Of course, the problem here was that, and John has probably already told you this, what the record companies ended up doing—inadvertently or otherwise…I don’t know, and I don’t wish to cast aspersions—was use the wrong tapes. They were using EQ tape copies, sometimes third of fourth generation, and if you know how records are made, especially in the old days, you make an EQ copy from the original master and utilize that to make your final cuts: EQ, compression, level adjustments, phase correction—all that kind of stuff. The reason being, we were trying to get what we put on tape, full frequency, into a format that wasn’t quite capable of accepting that. It was a compromise.

It was also a way of preserving the original master

True, but also it was a compromise to get this sonic information from your original tape onto a lacquer. What had happened since that time, whether the record companies weren’t paying attention to detail or whatever, they were using these EQ tape copies to make the CDs from. So a CD is a full-range device, which didn’t need to have all that compression and all that EQ and all that other crap on there. We needed to go back to the original quarter-inch masters and redo it. Which is exactly what we did, in 85% of the time.
And the difference is lovely, wonderful, scary…delicious. A veil, a blanket, has been pulled from in front of the speakers. It’s all analog. We used a lovely old ATR quarter–inch machine, and adjusted the azimuth on every single track—each track is individually tailored for absolute maximum fidelity on every song. And I EQ-ed it in the analog domain, using Pultec, Sontecs, no compression—and it sounds wonderful. And once we’ve got all that information, it’s in the computer and…well, you have to ask [mastering engineer] George Marino about all this stuff. But it sounds wonderful.

So you did one separate process for both analog and digital?

The process is analog from the quarter-inch tape, through EQ, into the digital world. So it stays analog as long as we possibly can until we absolutely have to get into the digital domain—that’s essential. If you want the complete chain of events there, again, you have to ask George. One of the things we did was that we wanted to make the albums not only sound like original—well, better than the originals, because there’s more depth—but you have to be very careful what you add, because you just touch a knob, and it changes the sound. So you have to be very careful how much EQ you use, and where you use it, and what type of EQ you use, and whether it matches the correct frequency of what’s on the tape already.

Did you go back to vintage equipment?

The only vintage gear we went back to were the Pultecs, and everything else was contemporary gear. But, we also wanted to do vinyl, which we did, and I’m really thrilled with the vinyl—it sounds so beautiful. Pressed on 180-gram vinyl. It’s a labor of love, and when you look at this piece of vinyl, it takes you back to the past, and when you open up the record, it’s the original cover, the original inside sleeve, and it’ll look great, with some extra information in there as well. And it’s a thrill to open up an album again.

As a listener can you characterize any difference you feel from the vinyl to the digital?

It’s warmer, as you would expect from vinyl. I love vinyl, so I’m prejudiced. But I would say it’s slightly warmer, the imaging is probably about the same; you don’t expect vinyl to have the preciseness in the low end that the CD would have.

I’m thinking more in terms of front to back, top to bottom.

You’ll have to A-B the vinyl to the CD. I just like the way they sound in general. I’m a vinyl fan, but I would leave it to the listener to make up his or her mind. The vinyl is definitely worth having—but there’s only going to be a pressing of 10,000 each in this edition.

What was it like it to go revisiting again after all these years?

It was like being on an archeological dig with a little brush and scraping away bit after bit and going, oh wow, that’s what we did, I remember that lick. And there are things you can hear, like Jimi turning a page; acoustical details that weren’t apparent before—like really nice, strong bass—that was not there before. It’s a lot better now. Wait until you hear it. [Eddie pulls out a CD so we can audition a sampling of freshly re-mastered tracks]

Just for future reference, if there’s time to audition it, Side 3 of Electric Ladyland always fascinated me...seemed like it had been made for some illusory five-channel matrix, thirty years in the future—although with prudent use of hallucinogens, extra channels did seem to exist at the time.

Well, we actually got into that quite a bit. There is actually a phony 3-D image that you’ll actually hear on Electric Ladyland that wasn’t available before—we actually did it and you can actually hear it on a couple of tracks.

Did you play any instrument?

Yes, I studied classical piano for many, many years. [Puts on “Freedom”]. You can hear the bass for the first time.

Yeah, the bass has so much more presence. I can hear the beater hitting the bass drum—plus it’s just so much more dimensional.

You never heard that before, not with that clarity. [Izabella”] Punch. [“Night Bird Flying”] Listen to the reverb, too. You can hear all the reverbs I put on there, and the delays and stuff. You could never hear that before.

I was just hearing a guitar part in the center I never heard before.

You’ll have many hours of happy listening on this. [“Angel”] When that cymbal crashes in, there’s a half-speed thing that we recorded at 7-½ips and played back at 15ips. You know that only the overdubs that we intended to record, that Jimi intended to be there, were done.

I see what you mean about those reverbs on the guitars

And check out the reverb on the voice. You can hear the tail of the reverb….

Also the way you were panning it. Can we hear “Drifting” and “Hey, Baby”? God bless Mitch Mitchell—he never met a fill he didn’t like [laughter]. First Rays Of The New Rising Sun really is a whole different experience than The Cry Of Love, because in the way it was originally configured the intimations of his death were much more out front. I see you got Band Of Gypsies back from that schmendrick. Can I hear “Voodoo Chile” live? [Eddie finds the disc and we give it a spin]

When he comes in, the sound is so menacing. And the band picks up on it with the first fill.

Oh, wow, you can finally hear Jack Casady. Pretty much a live recording…

That’s exactly what it was. You can hear every fucking detail.

And you could never hear the low end of that organ pad before, and Jack must have been a bitch to record, because he has no top end on his bass whatsoever. It’s all swamp. So are you saying that the reverb around his voice and the drums is the low-level information that you wouldn’t have been able to get on vinyl before?

And also the cymbal sizzle.

“Rainy Day, Dream Away” What exactly is that sound which gives his guitar the felling of the inner springs of a mattress bouncing around in a pool of Jell-O?

That’s my patented Hendrix reverb that I’ve been using for 30 years.

[“1984”] That’s a very nice acoustic-electric sound--some very psychedelic panning there. So you haven’t done anything in the way of five-channel matrix stereo or DVD [remember, we are conversing in 1997]?

When it becomes generally available to the public and it makes sense to do it, maybe then we’ll do it. Frankly, I think the 5.1/surround-sound…right now we have some live stuff that would suit it better—when the project suits the technology, I’ll do it, and not before.
There’s no reason to fool around with that stuff now, and phony it up and make it sound hip. That’s bullshit. The main thing is to get the CDs out, get the vinyl out, and restore credibility. CDs are not going away tomorrow; we’re going to have them for the next ten years, I hope. Which doesn’t mean that DVDs won’t come along, or you’ll have a chip implanted in your brain. When it gets to that point, fine. It’s not that I’m unaware of modern technology—I’m painfully aware of technology. But it’s just that I don’t know if it makes any sense now, and I’d hope that the public would agree. So you’ve heard pretty much what we’ve done. I mean, even if you’re used to listening to the other stuff, this is just so much better.


[“Castles Made Of Sand”] Now that guitar bit, is it reverse tape? You know, Brother Kramer, you were doing a lot of things on the board then that seem analogous to what hip-hop DJs do…

I must say it’s all much improved.

True transients on the drums…more air between the instruments. You should see the look on your face now. You look like you’re…there’s a Yiddish word called kvelling. You look as through you were watching over your son crawling across the carpet and starting to walk for the first time.

I am Jewish, and Iknow what kvelling is. I’m very well aware of the Yiddish words and I use ‘em my self. Oy vey esh mier.

Well, I’m glad you finally made the transition from tsurris to kvelling.

[Laughter]Let me tell you, it was a lot of tsurris before you could get to the kvelling. You know, it’s funny, when you started talking about Yiddish, maybe there’s a connection there between the Jewish soul and Jimi’s Black soul. I don’t know. Maybe there’s a connection or some kind of unique camaraderie.

I always thought so. When I drove a taxi cab in New York, I would mess with people a little bit by keeping a copy of Joyce’s Finnegans Wake on the dashboard as a conversation starter [laughter], and when people would ask if I was reading it, I would tell them, “No I’m not intelligent enough. I just leave that up there to intimidate tips from sensitive intellectuals.”

[Laughter] That’s great.

And I used to advance this theory that African-Americans, the Irish and the Jews were the same people with many parallels: a dark ironic style of humor; a history of suffering and oppression; and an artistic quality of poetic lyricism, with a very spiritual worldview. The only people who couldn’t accept that notion were African-Americans, the Irish and the Jews [laughter]. Like when I first heard Coltrane’s intro to Elvin Jones’ Crescent feature, “The Drum Thing.” I became conscious of a cantorish, devotional quality to the way he articulated the minor mood of the melody. People spend so much time delineating how different we are, instead of detailing the ways we share some essential unity.

I hadn’t thought of this until you said that, then all of a sudden I had this mental picture of the Jewish soul and the Black soul being kind of close together.
And I think you’re correct. Maybe there is some kind of connection: the fact that I grew up with classical music in a Jewish household; and my mother used to sing; and my dad was a violinist and we had a string quartet—and my father was the president of the James Joyce Society, just to bring that in. And I can recall how we used to read Finnegans Wake aloud as kids—what a nut case my dad is, and God bless him, he’s 90 years old. So maybe there is a connection—I don’t know.

Well, that’s certainly what the Wake is about. Saying that’s it’s all connected…

It isn’t even writing—it’s like pure music and color.
That’s the way Jimi was to me—pure music and color.


--------------------------------------------- Fin de l'interview ------------------------------
Postscript:For all of the associations one might draw between Eddie Kramer and Jimi Hendrix, there is more to the man than just the recording studio, and there is a lot more to his career as an engineer than just Jimi. For starts, you might want to spend some time wandering about his fascinating web site, The Kramer Archives, which details his long-term fascination with photography, and as such, is a fascinating visual history of the many visionary rock musicians with whom Kramer has collaborated over the years.

Needless to say, there are a considerable number of memorable recordings Kramer contributed to as a recording-mixing-mastering engineer and as a producer, both preceding his creative flowering with Hendrix (such as his work on the Beatles singles “All You Need Is Love” and “Baby You’re A Rich Man”), and in the years thereafter: including such varied and influential works as Mr. Fantasy, Traffic and Heaven Is In Your Mind by Traffic; Led Zeppelin’s II and III, as well as Physical Graffiti; John Mayall’s Turning Point; Peter Frampton’s Camel and Frampton Comes Alive, the Woodstock soundtrack and Icarus by the Paul Winter Consort. He also nurtured long-term relationships with the group Kiss (for whom he produced and engineered their string of breakthrough ‘70s hits, not to mention subsequent solo and group efforts), as well as Carly Simon and NRBQ, while midwifing the music of numerous ‘80s metal bands, such as Anthrax.

His work on the legendary blues guitarist Buddy Guy’s 1995 release Slippin’ In garnered Eddie a long-overdue Grammy Award (he won another in 2002 for his work with Carlos Santana and Michelle Branch on the single, "The Game of Love”), and his most recent work as producer and engineer on the Analogue Productions Originals release of It’s Time by blues guitarist Jimmy D. Lane (son of Chicago blues legend Jimmy Rogers), ranks among his most emotive, dynamically compelling recordings—yielding two very different digital and analog mixes for both a Hybrid SACD release, and a double set of 45 RMP discs on 180 gram vinyl.

One of the reasons Kramer could so readily communicate with musicians is because he was trained as a musician: studying piano, cello and violin as a child growing up in South Africa (he is even credited with a vibraphone part on the Beatles’ Magical Mystery Tour).

Eddie’s musicianship is particularly evident on one of his lesser-known works, an obscure 1971 session at Electric Lady studios with jazz-fusion pioneer Larry Coryell, Barefoot Boy (out of print, last available as a CD on One Way).
It’s an interesting snapshot both of the state of the art Electric Lady sound, and of Kramer’s abilities as an interpreter and an improviser. When the bassist was late for the session, Coryell and saxophonist Steve Marcus begin jamming on the guitarist’s ferocious vamp to Gabor Szabo’s “Gypsy Queen,” as conga player Lawrence Killian and the innovative jazz drummer Roy Haynes created an explosive rhythmic foundation.

You can hear Kramer pulling it all together on the fly, and upon listening to the wonderful richness, presence, dynamic range and bass sound that distinguish the complete band’s subsequent renditions of Coryell’s funky blues “The Great Escape” and their long Coltraneish exploration, “Call To A Higher Consciousness,” you realize just how raw, how live and how much by the seat of his pants Kramer and the band were flying on that opening jam. Of particular interest is how intuitive and rhythmically dead on Kramer’s live stereo panning effects are. Kramer’s multiple moves all sound perfectly natural in the context of on Coryell’s blazing lines and crashing waves of distorted chords, as the engineer accentuates the guitarist’s free jazz intentions without calling undue attention to himself. And I’ve always had a softspot in my heart for “Call To A Higher Consciousness” as it features a nice example of Kramer’s signature reverb sound on Coryell’s guitar coda, and Eddie’s visceral depiction of the Roy Haynes’ sound really makes the drummer’s solo spot come alive.

Now halfway through his fifth decade as a creative artist, Eddie Kramer has retained his exploratory verve on a variety of recording projects, including all of those Hendrix family authorized releases drawn from the classic catalog (and Jimi’s vast stocks of studio tapes, concert tapes and concert footage), while collaborating with writer-historian John McDermott on two books: Hendrix—Setting The Record Straight and Jimi Hendrix Sessions.

Eddie also participated in a number of Hendrix tributes, while bringing Hendrix into the DVD-5.1 surround sound era with his work on one of the guitarist’s most revered live performances, Jimi Plays Berkeley, which was released in 2003 (he also did 5.1 restorations of the concert performances which make up Monterey Pop and Hendrix’s complete set at the Isle of Wight).


Finally, allow me to acknowledge the ongoing contributions of two truly devoted fans, my old friends Nona Hatay and Bill Nitopi, who authored two of the better books on Hendrix: Nana’s very personal Photo-Art Collection (Jimi Hendrix: Reflections And Visions), and Bill’s collection of photos and hand-written lyrics, musings and memorabilia from the pen of the artist (Jimi Hendrix: Cherokee Mist—The Lost Writings).

I’ve been trying to reconstruct when and how I first met Nona Hatay, and I seem to recall sharing her enthusiasm for a charismatic a cappella quintet called 14 Karat Soul, who were doing an expressive performance art piece called “Sister Suzie Cinema” at Joseph Papp’s Public Theater in lower Manhattan, sometime around 1980. If I recall correctly, I was covering 14 Karat Soul for Musician, so perhaps Nona had the photo assignment. In any event, Nona was kind of sweet on the bass singer (who used to tear it up on “Sixty Minute Man”), and over the course of talking we discovered our intense mutual passion for Jimi Hendrix. When I saw how vividly she had transformed and personalized an extensive set of concert photos [/font]by hand painting them, layering multiple images, employing solarization and other dark room machinations, I felt an immediate connection to her work.

As I was then in the process of preparing a Village Voice piece on one of the posthumous Hendrix releases then emanating from Warner Brothers (Nine To The Universe, featuring the great organ player and Tony Williams Lifetime alumnus Larry Young), I encouraged editor Robert Christgau to employ one of her images to accompany the article (If 6 Was 9)

Shortly thereafter, Nona made a present to me of an eerie solarized cameo I’ve entitled Belly Button Window, which appears in Part I of my conversations with Eddie Kramer. Nona went on to become immensely popular in high art circles through her frequent gallery showings, and the ever-expanding scope of her Hendrix collection, which graced numerous magazines, recordings, posters and t-shirts.

She also crafted a series of imagistic storyboards about other progressive rock icons, such as Frank Zappa, and in recent years expanded upon her predilection for the healing arts and personal transformations (photographic and otherwise), by releasing a series of Natural Illusions photo settings, which derive their inspiration from “the sacred geometry of the Mandela…”

On her web site she also offers a new age styled Visual Meditations DVD,
that weaves over a hundred of her photographic-treatments into three musical audio-video episodes of 3, 10 and 20 minute respectively. These DVD-photo treatments are also available in custom programmed formats, employing music of the listener’s own choosing. Needless to say, it was nice to touch bases with Nona again after so many years, and I am so pleased that she has allowed me to draw upon her work in signifying the recollections of Jimi Hendrix that Eddie Kramer and I shared over two afternoons. You can further explore her work by linking up to The Canal Gallery in Holyoke, Massachusetts.

Finally, there is Mister Bill Nitopi, who in my experience is like a John The Baptist of Hendrix collectors. I first met Bill through the aforementioned Village Voice piece on Nine To The Universe. After reading my article, Bill phoned me up about getting Nona Hatay’s contact information, and thereafter we launched into a very intense, in-depth conversation about Hendrix, which inaugurated a long and enduring friendship.

Bill Nitopi was then, and remains to this day, one of the most honest, knowledgeable and devoted archivists and collectors: an authentic Hendrix scholar (quite unlike those rogues and charlatans germinating in the E-Bay petri dish), who has contributed immeasurably to the promulgation of the Hendrix legacy. Over the years Bill has generously shared the fruits of his research on Hendrix with me, including numerous photos, concert recordings and tidbits of memorabilia.
Bill continues to inform and enlighten me and countless others with his time and generosity: many thanks to Bill for everything, including my recent connection to David Pearcy’s Jimi Hendrix On Line, a really expansive, devotional fan site, with loads of information, and gallery after gallery of fascinating photo images.

Source: http://www.chipstern.com/chip_sound_ekp2.htm


Dernière édition par sequelenoise le Mer 18 Mai 2011 - 8:18, édité 1 fois
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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Mar 17 Mai 2011 - 23:22

Merci sequelenoise !
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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Mer 18 Mai 2011 - 2:40

Entretien intéressant... mais malheureusement non contradictoire : comment Kramer a-t-il pu valider le travail de George Marino ? En 1997 comme en 2010...

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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Jeu 13 Oct 2011 - 16:48

Contemplating the Hendrix empire - Producer Eddie Kramer talks about his experience with legendary guitarist

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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Ven 14 Oct 2011 - 8:03

En bref l'esprit de Jimi guide sa main pour les mixages, cuts et autres What a Face
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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Sam 15 Oct 2011 - 14:35

Jimi a une activité post mortem très soutenue : il faisait déjà le coup à Alan Douglas !

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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Lun 17 Oct 2011 - 14:28

héhéhé What a Face PTDR
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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Ven 18 Mai 2012 - 9:46

How did you begin your working relationship with Jimi Hendrix ?

I got a job at Olympic Studios in London, which was the cool independent studio. Olympic was one of the leading forces in independent recording studios. They were not tied to any major label, so it was easier for them to be edgier and try new techniques that nobody else was trying. Within a week or two of its opening we had Jimi Hendrix, the Stones, and on and on. Jimi came to Olympic because he had done some tracks like “Hey Joe” and “Stone Free” at another studio, and he and Chas Chandler were unhappy with the sound.

Somehow or other we hit it off right from the beginning, maybe because I was non-judgmental about his music. I had a very open mind about it. I was able to interpret what he wanted. If he came up with a sound on the floor of the studio I’d run into the control room, twiddle some knobs, put some reverb, EQ and compression on it, and he’d come into the studio and go, “Wow! That sounds nice.” Then he’d run back out into the studio and say, “Watch this!” We’d try to top each other. It was this mad competition to make it sound the very best that we could. He would always laugh when I’d do wacky stuff like panning.

Jimi was a man who thought very carefully about what he was going to do and how he was going to do it. Electric Ladyland was a very adventurous album. It gave me the feeling that I could do pretty much whatever I wanted. Jimi said, “Go for it. Let’s get as many crazy sounds as we can.” And we did. We experimented a lot—slowing down the tapes, phasing, reverse. We went nuts and it worked because we were creating these sound paintings.

Everyone talks at length about the bold new sounds Jimi created on Electric Ladyland, but you also captured some incredible straightforward guitar tones and performances from him, like on “Voodoo Chile.”

I remember that Jimi played a white Fender Stratocaster on that song. Surprisingly, the amp he used on that song was not a Marshall stack. It was actually a Fender Showman top with a huge cabinet with eight 10-inch speakers in it. You can hear it rumbling around on the floor of the Record Plant when you listen to the beginning of the song. He’s standing right in front of the amp and singing into the microphone, which was a Beyer M160—a ribbon mic that I always used on him. It’s a live recording. You can hear the sound reverberating all around in the room.


You’ve worked with many of the world’s greatest guitarists. Who were your favorite players to record ?

I love them all for their various eccentricities and craziness. Each artist brings a different vibe to the table. Let’s say you took the two Jimmys—Jimmy Page and Jimi Hendrix—and you tried to analyze which of the two guys was doing something radically different. They both are. Jimmy Page comes from British folk, rock, pop and blues. He’s a very well trained and schooled musician. He came up through the ranks and put this band together that was unstoppable.

Then you look at Jimi Hendrix, who is probably the world’s greatest guitar player. Hendrix came from this school of discipline. He grew up in Seattle where his dad was really tough on him, he was put into the army where he got more discipline, then he came out of the army and went on the road on the chitlin circuit, working with Little Richard and the Isley Brothers. With those guys, if you put one foot wrong on stage they’d fine you five dollars. He had to break away from that, so he came to New York and tried to figure out who he was and where he was going. He had all of these ideas in his head about sounds that he couldn’t really express. If he tried to do that with Little Richard he’d be thrown off the stage or fired. That’s exactly what happened to him. Little Richard didn’t want Jimi to steal any of his thunder.

You look at these two giants and they both have something very individual to say. But they both came from this idea of discipline—learning your instrument and knowing it intimately, knowing the boundaries and beyond. Jimi used to sleep with his guitar. He played it eight hours a day. The guitar was like a toy in his hands.


Source : http://gc.guitarcenter.com/interview/eddie-kramer/
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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Mer 20 Mar 2013 - 13:10

Extraits non publiés de l'entretien avec Eddie Kramer :

RC : De nombreux fans pensent qu’Electric Ladyland mérite d’être réédité sous forme de coffret, comme Sony a pu le faire avec les albums de Miles Davis tels Jack Johnson. Pensez-vous que cela puisse constituer un projet dans le futur ?

Eddie Kramer : Vous savez, c’est intéressant. Avec Electric Ladyland, on pourrait envisager ça avec une belle approche. C’est une excellente question. Oui, pourquoi pas ? (Rires) Je pense que c’est une bonne idée !

RC : Y a-t-il une chance que l’on puisse entendre via Dagger Records plus d’albums consacrés aux jams, tels Hear My Music et Burning Desire ?

EK : Oui. Dagger est super. C’est la branche d’Experience Hendrix consacrée aux pirates. C’est un projet fabuleux en cela qu’il a mis fin à ces maudits pirates. John McDermott me donne les bandes à écouter, afin de voir si je peux les améliorer – ce que je fais en général. Ainsi, elles peuvent presque sonner convenablement. Il y aura probablement des choses de cette nature. Oui, il devrait y en avoir un peu.

RC : Les 3 titres en concert du Band Of Gypsys récemment publiés sur le coffret West Coast Seattle Boy ont un son magnifique. Peut-on s’attendre à ce que vous remixiez certains morceaux du Live at the Fillmore East de la sorte ?

EK : C’est une question intéressante. Je ne sais pas. Hum…

RC : Je pense que, désormais, vous possédez les enregistrements multipistes.

EK : Oui, c’est vrai que nous avons les enregistrements multipistes. Je ne sais pas. Je ne sais pas ce qu’on va faire avec ça. C’est certainement un truc auquel on pourrait s’intéresser, mais je ne peux répondre de façon définitive.

RC : Peut-on espérer que le premier concert du Band Of Gypsys soit publié sous la forme d’un CD par exemple ?

EK : Je ne sais pas. C’est une question intéressante, liée à la première question [sur le Band Of Gypsys]. Il reviendra à Sony, John, moi-même et Janie de décider. Nous allons en discuter… mais je poserai la question et verrai ce qu’ils diront.

RC : A propos des concerts du Rainbow Bridge, pensez-vous qu’on puisse en tirer un album commercialisable ?

EK : Je n’ai jamais estimé que ces concerts fussent très bons. Ils sont plombés par des problèmes techniques et la qualité de leur enregistrement est vraiment atroce. Ce serait assurément compliqué à restaurer. Cela fait un moment que je pourrais le faire, mais cela pose la question : que valent ces concerts ?

RC : A mon sens, le premier concert est plutôt bon…

EK : Il est correct, mais franchement, je n’ai jamais été un grand fan des concerts du Rainbow Bridge. Le film est tout simplement affreux.

RC : Qu’en est-il du concert du festival d’Atlanta ?

EK : Il y a beaucoup de matériel dont nous disposons dans nos archives sur lequel je travaille – mais je ne peux pas vous dire sur quoi, car j’ai une obligation de confidentialité, mais il y a un paquet de trucs géniaux, un paquet de trucs géniaux.

RC : Donc à l’avenir, si je comprends bien ce que vous me dites, nous pouvons nous attendre à pas mal d’albums en concert ?

EK : Oui.

RC : Devons-nous nous attendre à la performance complète du LA Forum ?

EK : …

RC : Vous ne pouvez rien dire ?

EK : Je ne peux pas répondre précisément. Tout ce que je peux dire est qu’il y a beaucoup de bonnes choses. Je ne vais pas vous exactement lesquelles.

RC : Puis-je vous poser la question différemment ? A votre avis – et je ne parle pas des concerts du Royal Albert Hall – quel est le meilleur concert parmi ceux qui sont inédits ?

EK : La question ne se pose pas pour le Royal Albert Hall. C’est l’une des plus belles performances de tous les temps. Sa publication est retardée par un problème d’ordre juridique…

RC : … avec Monsieur Goldstein ?

EK : Ah… (silence) Pfff

RC : Vous ne voulez pas en parler ?

EK : Ah… (rires) C’est comme… C’est un grand concert. Il sortira un de ces jours, qui sait quand ?

RC : Un commentaire à propos du premier concert du RAH ?

EK : Chaque fois que Jimi jouait en concert, dans une situation telle que celle-ci, où il était enregistré, on obtenait des trucs qui étaient bons, d’autres qui ne l’étaient pas. Tout est dans le soin avec lequel vous faites le tri.

RC : Envisagez-vous de publier des coffrets live, à l’image de ce que vous avez fait avec le Winterland – qui est super ?

EK : Oui. Je pense qu’un coffret est sans aucun doute une idée qui circule. Le concept d’un coffret présentant de bonnes choses en concert est une bonne idée. Oui, il y aura probablement quelque chose de ce type.


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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Mer 20 Mar 2013 - 13:20

puis-je publier le reste de l'interview avec Eddie Kramer sur la page FB??? Question
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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Mer 20 Mar 2013 - 13:31

Si tu le souhaites : elle n'a pas été retenue !

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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Mer 20 Mar 2013 - 13:33

Rétrospectivement, la réponse sur Atlanta est intéressante : alors qu'il répond sur le Rainbow Bridge, il se réfugie aussitôt dans ses obligations contractuelles. Un signe ? Hein ?

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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Mer 20 Mar 2013 - 13:39

Ayler a écrit:
Extraits non publiés de l'entretien avec Eddie Kramer :

RC : De nombreux fans pensent qu’Electric Ladyland mérite d’être réédité sous forme de coffret, comme Sony a pu le faire avec les albums de Miles Davis tels Jack Johnson. Pensez-vous que cela puisse constituer un projet dans le futur ?

Eddie Kramer : Vous savez, c’est intéressant. Avec Electric Ladyland, on pourrait envisager ça avec une belle approche. C’est une excellente question. Oui, pourquoi pas ? (Rires) Je pense que c’est une bonne idée !


RC : Les 3 titres en concert du Band Of Gypsys récemment publiés sur le coffret West Coast Seattle Boy ont un son magnifique. Peut-on s’attendre à ce que vous remixiez certains morceaux du Live at the Fillmore East de la sorte ?

EK : C’est une question intéressante. Je ne sais pas. Hum…

RC : Je pense que, désormais, vous possédez les enregistrements multipistes.

EK : Oui, c’est vrai que nous avons les enregistrements multipistes. Je ne sais pas. Je ne sais pas ce qu’on va faire avec ça. C’est certainement un truc auquel on pourrait s’intéresser, mais je ne peux répondre de façon définitive.

RC : Peut-on espérer que le premier concert du Band Of Gypsys soit publié sous la forme d’un CD par exemple ?

EK : Je ne sais pas. C’est une question intéressante, liée à la première question [sur le Band Of Gypsys]. Il reviendra à Sony, John, moi-même et Janie de décider. Nous allons en discuter… mais je poserai la question et verrai ce qu’ils diront.

Si ces albums sont libérés, j'espère que si Regis n'est pas nommé en tant que producteur / consultant, il a au moins obtenir un remerciement imprimées sur las pochettes... Smile
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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Mer 20 Mar 2013 - 14:21

Merci pour ces compliments d'enquête (assez rassurant) Régis !
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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Mer 20 Mar 2013 - 14:24

Quelle prudence de Sioux ces réponses...

On se demande à quoi bon accorder des interviews si c'est juste pour répéter la position officielle.
Je note avec espoir la réponse (plutôt) positive sur les albums Dagger dont il ne semble pas décider lui-même du contenu (ce qui, tout compte fait, serait plutôt positif).

Concernant les concerts de Maui (Rainbow Bridge), la qualité sonore n'est pas si immonde puisqu'ils ont quand même sorti "Hey Baby/In From the Storm" sur le coffret pourpre (il me semble que Mitch a réenregistré la batterie sur la majorité des titres).
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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Mer 20 Mar 2013 - 14:29

Oui, Maui pourrait faire un double Dagger correcte mais parce qu'ls ont du film, ils opteront probablement pour une sortie grand public.
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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Mer 20 Mar 2013 - 14:46

Oui pour Maui il reste bon nombre de bobines 16 mm qui n'ont pas encore était utilisé!!!! Sais pas
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MessageSujet: Re: Eddie Kramer    Aujourd'hui à 8:51

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