Attendees got to look, listen, learn and even perform with Alan Parsons at the action-packed Master Class Training Session on July 22-23 at the prestigious Village Studios in Los Angeles.

The two-day event was based around the recording of a brand new song Do You Live At All< from Alan Parsons and writing partners P.J. Olsson and Guy Erez.

The dream team of musicians included Vinnie Colaiuta (drums), Nathan East (bass), Rami Jaffee (keys), Michael Thompson (guitar) and singer P.J. Olsson.

Sixteen Attendees participated in every aspect of the recording from setting mics on the drums to EQ-ing the grand piano. Nathan East demonstrated his new four figure instrument cables, Rami and Alan traded Leslie miking stories, Vinnie discussed studio playing dynamics and showed his beautiful vintage Gretsch kit in detail, and Michael Thompson wowed everyone with his giant, blinking recording rack and pedal array.

With the live tracking session in the bag Day 1 concluded with overdubs including grand piano, electric and acoustic guitar, mandolin, and percussion.

Day 2 began with vocals; Alan Parsons demonstrating a number of recording techniques including the singer monitoring the track on speakers and how to use reversed phase to reduce spill into the mic. With lead and backing vocals completed Alan led all the Attendees into the studio to record a choir track. “You guys sounded really, really good,” he pronounced at the reception in The Village’s theater at the end of the event.

The working section of Day 2 continued with the mix, preceded by a fascinating demo from JCF Audio about their new Audio AD8 converter on sale at Vintage King

A total of 64 tracks had been recorded by the end of the session and Attendees got to take home not only the stereo mix but also a copy of the multitrack ProTools session.

The chance to observe a recording session with Alan Parsons and A-list musicians would have been special enough. The Master Class Training Session in Los Angeles went several steps further, letting Attendees actually “Make A Record” with Alan Parsons – including being recorded by him! Throughout the event, Alan gave a running commentary on each procedure.

Discussions for future Master Class Training Sessions are already in the works including the possibility of a follow-up to this event comprising a scientific study of mixing in-the-box and hands-on-with-hardware, conducted and studied side by side; looking not only at the audio results but also the psychological impact of the two approaches.

For complete information about this event please visit

Event Sponsors

Vintage King Audio is the largest purveyor of high-end new and vintage recording equipment in the world.   

Audio-Technica, producers of award-winning microphones and headphones for over 50 years.

Universal Audio producers of studio processing tools including software emulations of classic designs from the legendary Bill Putnam.

Yamaha is the world’s largest producer of musical equipment silent violins, portable music recorders to state-of-the-art digital consoles.

Level 3 MASTER CLASS TRAINING SESSION with Alan Parsons announced for Los Angeles, July 22-23, 2011

Make a record with industry legend Alan Parsons.

Dateline: June 28th 2011: Announcing the first U.S. Master Class Training Session in Los Angeles on July 22-23, 2011, at which a select group of attendees will make a record with multi-Platinum engineer, producer and artist Alan Parsons and the crème de la crème of LA’s session musicians at the legendary Village Studios in Los Angeles.


Based at Village Studios, where such classic records as Steely Dan’s Aja and Fleetwood Mac’s Tusk were recorded, the Level 3 (Advanced) Master Class Training Session will comprise a live tracking session including piano, guitar and keyboard overdubs, lead and backing vocals and a mix. This intensive two-day workshop expands upon many of the techniques and practices shown in Alan Parsons’ ground-breaking Art & Science Of Sound Recording video series.

Attendees not only observe but will also participate in all aspects of a professional recording session, from setting up a live tracking session to working on a final mix. Stages include miking drums and piano, getting optimum separation, general mic selection, recording keyboard and guitar overdubs, recording lead and backing vocals. Everything from EQ to compression to effects will be covered.

Attendees will be working alongside some of LA’s top session musicians, many of whom worked alongside Alan on the Art & Science Of Sound Recording series, including Michael Jackson/Bon Jovi/Crowded House guitarist Tim Pierce.

At the end of this intensive 2-day workshop attendees will take away a mix of the track they have been working on. They will also have the opportunity to take away the Session file for further inspection after the event.


Day 1 commences at 10 AM with a live tracking session including piano, followed by keyboard and guitar overdubs. The opening day concludes with a 1 1/2 hour informal Q & A session with Alan and the session players.

Day 2 starts with recording lead and backing vocals alongside a breakout session on recording keyboards. The mix will comprise the entire afternoon session. Photo opportunities and presentation of certificates will conclude Day 2 at 7.30 PM.

The full timetable along with Registration is here on the ASSR website:

Materials & Costs

Included in the cost of the workshop is lunch with Alan on both days and refreshments throughout, a USB thumb drive of the final mix, goodie bag from sponsors including ATH-m40 headphones from Audio-Technica, UAD coupons from Universal Audio worth $299, a signed copy of Alan Parsons’ Art & Science Of Sound Recording DVD set and, most importantly, the opportunity to get a copy of the full multi-track session files (attendees must supply media).

Cost for the Los Angeles MCTS is $1950 per person ($1750 with Student ID).

The Los Angeles MCTS is limited to just 25 seats and with pre-registrations already in place early sign-ups are highly recommended for this unique event.

Event Sponsors

Vintage King Audio is the largest purveyor of high-end new and vintage recording equipment in the world.   

Audio-Technica, producers of award-winning microphones and headphones for over 50 years.

Universal Audio, producers of studio processing tools including software emulations of classic designs from the legendary Bill Putnam.

Yamaha is the world’s largest producer of musical equipment silent violins, portable music recorders to state-of-the-art digital consoles.

At time of writing, all our fingers and toes are crossed here in Santa Cruz as local boy-making-good James Durbin slugs it out in the final stages of Fox’s 2011 season of American Idol.

James is featured in Alan Parsons Art & Science Of Sound Recording ‘Vocals’ section in a scene filmed in 2008 at the Bay Area’s Ex'pression College.

To add some karma to the fire we’re giving away a 100% free stream of the more than 40-minute Vocals section – just through this weekend.

The Vocals section is one of ASSR’s most compelling Sections so if you’ve held off checking out ASSR until now don’t miss out on this rare opportunity to not only see one of America’s hottest young singers in action, but also to see how industry legend handles recording vocals, from mic choices to processing to psychology!

If you’re not already registered, Registration takes about 30 seconds then you’re all done. While you are logged in, simply add 'Recording Vocals' to your cart. Use coupon code JAMES when prompted and check out.
OK, King Me!

Play this YouTube video of our bonus footage from Ex'pression College.

Dateline: May 10th 2011

The first in a series of live studio training events with Alan Parsons was held at the Universidad Nacional de Lanús (UNLA) in Buenos Aires on Thursday May 5th.

A concept initially explored by one of Argentina’s leading online music retailers Olimusic, the Master Class Training Session was timed to coincide with Alan Parsons Live Project tour dates in Argentina and Chile in early May and is sponsored by Argentinean distributors Sound Pro Latin America.

Over the course of the day Alan recorded a session with Argentinean band Vaqueros Paganos starting with live tracking, followed by overdubs including vocals and concluding with the basics of a mix.

Thirty seats were available for a ringside seat with Alan in the pair of Yamaha 02r-equipped control room, with an additional 100 seats in an adjoining theater receiving a multi-camera video feed supplied by the university’s own video production department.

Key stages of the event were also webcast live on Facebook.

Attendees in the main control room were hands-on participants; not only helping Alan set and plug in mics but also, individually, being able to access and look at the ProTools session. Alan was also answering questions throughout the day – not only why are you EQ-ing the overheads differently but also the inevitable “What was it like to work with Pink Floyd?”

One of the biggest surprises was how much separation Alan was able to get between the instruments–comprising a full drum kit, bass, and two separate guitarists–simply by positioning amps and use of appropriate mics and polar patterns. Remarkably, given the fact that gobos were only used to minimize some ambience during the recording of the lead vocals, there was almost no spill between any of the instruments.

Equally remarkably, in an almost 12-hour working day, Alan’s sense of humor and attention to detail never seemed to waiver.

Reaction to the event was extremely positive, not only live and in person but also on the Twittersphere. @Federiqo tweeted, "Awesome Master class, thank you, thank you very much. And ty 4 the picture to hahaha." @clockworkbanda tweeted, "Great Class Alan, its a shame we couldn't learn all the stuff you prepared, but I'm honoured from being there! Cheers!" University director Susana Espinoza was equally thrilled with the event, saying that the day was a complete validation of her personal efforts in getting the UNLA’s impressive recording facilities built in the first place.

The Universidad Nacional de Lanús is a public university (completely free to students) with more than 500 students enrolled in their 4-year audio and video production degree courses.

Master Class Training Session dates in the U.S. are due to be announced later this month, starting in July.