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What kind of Mic is Fapy using on those 90's recordings...?

anthon_74anthon_74 Marin county, CA✭✭✭✭ Alta Mira M 01
edited July 2013 in CD, DVD, and Concert Reviews Posts: 560
.... And where the hell can I get one and how much would it cost me ??

I have said in the past that the modern Gypsy Jazz recordings leave me cold a bit due to the high quality crystal clear sound the nice Neumman mics and pro tools gear creates... To my ears, this takes away the haunting quality of the old django recordings.

So I went on youtube to preview the CD I just ordered from Django books by Fapy Lafertin, which I was told he recorded using the old style mic that Django and company used to make their recordings....

AND WOW !! There is was, that old, slightly grainy sound, but with modern controls and recording gear keeping things consistent and such. What an AMAZING sound ! It's like old django but just a slight bit clearer due to, as I said, modern recording techniques. The old meets the new.

I know I've brought it up before, but I would LOVE play alongs recorded with this type of mic. Imagine how cool it would be to have play alongs that sound like the old recordings ? Am I the only one who would be into this kind of thing ??

Well, if I can find out what kind of mic he used, and find a way to make some recordings using it, I would definitely make some vintage sounding play alongs.

Unless someone else beats me too it...

Cheers,

Anthony
Appel
«1

Comments

  • PassacagliaPassacaglia Madison, WI✭✭✭✭
    Posts: 1,283
    Hey Anthony - the CD set is in my car, so don't have it in front of me but as I recall, it's an old (as in, 30's era, unless I've spaced?) ribbon mic. Also, again unless I've spaced, an old BBC engineer to run it?

    You might PM member dBlackie here - he produced it (and played, I believe, as well).

    Agreed, very, very cool couple of CDs!
    pas encore, j'erre toujours.
  • Bob HoloBob Holo Moderator
    Posts: 1,249
    In the studio videos Dave Kelbe made of Fapy, the mic directly in front of him looks sort of like the back of a Melodium Model 75a or possibly Model 55... Melodium was a French mic company and supposedly Django recorded on Melodiums a few times so that's a possibility.

    But a lot of this is the mastering - it is very truthful - possibly a little forward in the lower midrange but pleasantly free of sparkle or lift or plate or any other kind of EQ or ambience enhancement. It's a wonderfully unadorned mastering job... and those old large diaphragm dynamic mics started rolling off gently around 7kHz which is part of it. That's "the" sound for that type of recording. He did a hell of a good job of it, whatever he used... very old school.
    You get one chance to enjoy this day, but if you're doing it right, that's enough.
  • Lango-DjangoLango-Django Niagara-On-The-Lake, ONModerator
    edited June 2013 Posts: 1,371
    I bought the double CD set at DiJ and listened to it all the way home to Canada... Yes, it's totally awesome.

    I was hoping the liner notes would identify the mike but it only mentions "a single, retired pre-war BBC ribbon microphone, with a retired BBC sound engineer to drive it"

    I know this is heresy, but I almost prefer Fapy's playing to Django's... He swings just as hard, but without quite so much of that "drama queen" thing happening.

    (The flaming will begin in 10... 9... 8... :wink: )

    I also bought a double CD by Oscar Aleman that is almost as awesome as Fapy.

    Oscar swings too, though he usually doesn't hit the heights that Fapy and Django do... Unfortunately many of his recordings feature corny arrangements of multiple violins etc. and these have not aged well... But it is interesting to hear Oscar swing in a way so devoid of the typical manouche-y mannerisms that most of us automatically think of in conjunction with this era of guitar playing.

    And Anthony and other non-fans of the Latin GJ style won't believe this, but some of Oscar's Latin style stuff is actually pretty enjoyable listening... maybe because it features an authentic Argentinian rhythm section with drums and all.
    I live in a little tourist town called Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario, Canada, which is about twenty miles north of Niagara Falls.

    If you are ever planning on visiting the beautiful Niagara area, feel free to PM me and perhaps we can get together and do some jamming.
  • PassacagliaPassacaglia Madison, WI✭✭✭✭
    Posts: 1,283
    Funny, Will, I've had this discussion with some friends, pro's, in our area. I haven't listened to Django in an intensive way for several months, now. I'm immersed in Rosenberg land, with forays into other Dutch players-Fapy, Waso, DePiotto's, etc.; early musicians (Francis Moerman, Ferrets, others), chanteuse, chanteur (love Fleur de Paris) and the "Parisian" sound of Patrick Saussois...but "heart center" is the Rosenbergs sound. I thought I'd long ago have gotten sick of listening to them, watching their concert and other DVDs, obsessing on Nous'che's rhythm and Stochelo's tone and style. Nope, not yet, though I still fear burnout.

    These friends, who love Tchavolo, both nodded in a knowing way. They both said they followed a similar path - drifted away from Django to listen almost exclusively and intensively to a "second" or later generation player. But then, they came back to Django with a renewed prism to hear him through.

    I think I'm going through a similar thing...find myself late at night listening to Django, and I'm admitting it's with a better ear for what it is he did. I'm making NO statement by the way on anyone else's perceptions, yours certainly included....just an interesting thing for me...given my friends said they went through a similar thing, both in "leaving" Django for awhile, and what they heard when "coming back."

    Purely anecdotal, I know, but I was piqued by your experience, Will. Thanks for sharing.
    pas encore, j'erre toujours.
  • Oscar did some commercial stuff for sure,. I really enjoy listening to his playing, he was a wonderfully lyrical player and he was the first afaik to bring latin rhythms to jazz music in Europe. Too bad the nazis stole his National when he was going hiome at the outbreak of the war. I think mit was a magic guitar.
    The Magic really starts to happen when you can play it with your eyes closed
  • Bob HoloBob Holo Moderator
    Posts: 1,249

    I was hoping the liner notes would identify the mike but it only mentions "a single, retired pre-war BBC ribbon microphone, with a retired BBC sound engineer to drive it"

    ... prewar BBC Ribbon mic... well that narrows it down quite a bit:

    http://www.coutant.org/marconi_b/index.html

    You get one chance to enjoy this day, but if you're doing it right, that's enough.
  • Lango-DjangoLango-Django Niagara-On-The-Lake, ONModerator
    Posts: 1,371
    I think you nailed it, Bob, because the mike you linked to sure looks exactly like the one in this picture of Fapy (scroll down)

    http://keepitswinging.blogspot.ca/2012/ ... dings.html

    plus maybe I'm wrong, I think in this YouTube video the same mike is visible?

    http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?v=mnyWGkO4 ... nyWGkO4L2s
    I live in a little tourist town called Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario, Canada, which is about twenty miles north of Niagara Falls.

    If you are ever planning on visiting the beautiful Niagara area, feel free to PM me and perhaps we can get together and do some jamming.
  • fraterfrater Prodigy
    Posts: 763
    I own a Melodium 75A, a very cool microphone but, beware, that's just a part of the trick: so many others variables involved in getting close to THAT sound. EQ plays a critical role, Bob is right.
  • fraterfrater Prodigy
    edited May 2015 Posts: 763
    P.S.
    The one I see in Fapy's picture is much bigger than a Melodium 75A: it may well be the Marconi or maybe some kind of STC.
  • AppelAppel ✭✭✭
    edited May 2015 Posts: 78
    I love, love, love those two records - don't forget the note at the end of the second one, where they joke about taking that wonderful engineer out of retirement in order to make sounds that he would have spent his entire career trying his best not to make! It's the most wonderful and beautifully funny irony I think I've ever come across.

    Isn't Fapy just the best? I imagine him getting up every morning and setting to his studies of Django, and out of that discipline a beautiful soul emerges. He is one truly great guitarist I hope to meet one day.

    Django, I imagine getting up every in the morning, wandering out in his bare feet and standing on the grass ... and later in the day, looking at paintings, the great French painters of the day, Monet, Cezanne ... or maybe Gauguin, and thinking, Alors! Je peux le faire ...
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