Alan Parsons Looks Back At 2011

Alan Parsons' Art & Science
of Sound Recording
"Year One"

A personal message from ASSR producers Alan Parsons & Julian Colbeck:

Alan ParsonsComing to the end of the year is also coming to the end of The Art & Science Of Sound Recording’s first year out in the wide world. Last December the Keyfax offices were awash with boxes of pre-orders on their way out to those of you enthusiastic and kind enough to support this project ‘sight unseen.’ .

Julian ColbeckTo those who pre-ordered, those who subsequently bought the DVD in stores all around the world, those who purchased downloads and those who are still just considering buying something, very many thanks.

And to those who are still thinking about it, check out our Christmas Specials.

Guitar Center

Stacked ASSRThe GC guys have consistently been behind ASSR, which we very much appreciate. Writes Alan: “I’ve thoroughly enjoyed a slew of activities with one of the giants of our biz from in-store sessions to doing a podcast on recording to even working with one the company’s senior executives at one of our Master Class Training Sessions.”

Check out the Guitar Center podcast with Alan Parsons.

Help ASSR & write a customer review at Guitar Center!

Look out for a cover article featuring Alan in Musician’s Friend Magazine (owned by GC in case ya didn’t know) early in the New Year


Mega-retailer Sweetwater has also been a loyal fan of the program and it was fascinating to visit their facility in Indiana back in the summer for GearFest. Sweetwater’s studio facilities are top notch. It’s great to see a retailer so committed to education.

Sweetwater Website
ASSR Reviews at Sweetwater

Hal Leonard

Hal Leonard

Our man Hal (OK, we don’t think there is an actual Hal there) is our U.S. distributor, who keeps U.S. retailers supplied with ASSR DVD's.

If you can’t find the DVD set in your local store, please contact them and ask why!

Hal Leonard Website
ASSR at Hal Leonard

Se Habla Español

Julian ColbeckNot everyone is aware that ASSR also has a Spanish language soundtrack, the translations and voice-over carried out by Charlie Steves (not the most Spanish name we’ve ever heard though he does assure us he hails from Mexico City). One of the year’s most unusual scenes was seeing the audience at a playback event we did in Buenos Aires laughing out loud at some of the gags in the Dealing With Disasters section in Spanish! It’s tough enough making recording funny in English so hats off to Charlie.

Master Class Training Sessions

Alan ParsonsMCTS Buenos AiresAlan: “Recording is not generally a spectator sport (obligatory girlfriends aside, back in the day). But it has been great fun rubbing shoulders with aspiring producers and engineers at our series of live studio sessions. The first one we did was back in May in Argentina so not only was I adjusting and tweaking and explaining in real time as the band was out in the studio, I then had to wait for whatever-I-was doing to be translated into another language.”

Visit our MCTS Argentina page for a photo and video recap.

Alan Parsons“Our Los Angeles MCTS didn’t have any such concerns but, as a Level 1 event, I had the somewhat daunting task of explaining my actions to a couple of dozen fairly experienced producers and engineers. Remember the old joke “How many record producers it takes to change a light bulb? Dunno–what do you think?” There was an almost spooky consistency of reaction in the room though, even down to how very specific EQ should be applied and crucial spatial decisions. Somehow we all fused into one giant PRODUCER. Remarkable.”

MCTS logoVisit our MCTS Los Angeles page for a full overview and video of the event.Julian Colbeck

Julian: “Team ASSR is already planning more MCTS events for 2012 in the US and Mexico, with events in Canada, UK, Germany, Sweden, Italy, Australia and Japan also on the cards“.

Power Of The Press

2011Julian ColbeckJulian: “Everyone loves a good review and winces at the bad but we’ve been really pleased with the pundits’ reaction to our series. Here are some links to the good (we hope we’re not jinxing ourselves by saying there haven’t been any bad ones – yet!):”

  1. Harmony Central Review
  2. Wired Interview with Alan
  3. Premier Guitar Review

Schools In

Alan ParsonsNovemberAlan: “It took years in training for me to be let loose as an engineer on a recording session. There’s a lot to learn and it’s wonderful that you can now study music technology, recording and performance at schools and colleges all over the world. We think ASSR is an ideal companion to any Music Technology course and we offer an Educational License version especially for schools, complete with teacher access to the Quizzes and more. “

ASSR EL Logo“I had direct contact with students currently attending a course at The USC Thornton School Of Music during a special event in Los Angeles, which was a resounding success. We recorded a new track with an excellent band based at the school. I would like to convey personal thanks to Chris Sampson, the Associate Dean at the school for his part in shaping the whole event.”

Chris SampsonChris Sampson: "Alan is a natural educator and walked the students through the session step-by-step making sure that they understood each part of the process. He created an atmosphere of collaboration constantly asking for creative input from the students. He was a true mentor. The result was a learning experience that I know made a life-long impression on these young musicians."

USC Event

If you’re at a music/technology school – as a student or teacher – and want more information here’s the place to go:

Durbin Day

James Durbin

MayWe were all glued to the TV in April as Santa Cruz local James Durbin seemed to have the 2011 season of American Idol in his pocket. We’d worked with James on the Recording Vocals section a year earlier and it was clear then he was a major talent.Julian Colbeck

Though James fell at the eleventh hour, his debut CD Memories Of A Beautiful Disaster is racing up the charts as we speak so all is by no means lost. A glittering career surely awaits.

Not On TV: Holiday Special

December‘Knowledge’ has got to be one of the best things you can ever give someone. This Christmas and end-of-year, we’d like to make it a little easier by taking 20% off the physical DVD set until Dec 31st.

If you would like this gift-wrapped, we can do that also.

A Very Happy Christmas & New Year on behalf of everyone at ASSR,