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I would like to be paid like a plumber

๐ŸŒˆ Abstract

The article discusses a letter written by Steve Albini to the band Nirvana, outlining his philosophy and approach to recording their album "In Utero". Albini emphasizes his focus on preserving the band's creative vision and avoiding interference from the record label, as well as his preference for a fast-paced recording process that captures the band's live energy.

๐Ÿ™‹ Q&A

[01] Albini's Recording Philosophy

1. What are the key principles of Albini's recording philosophy?

  • Albini considers the band as the most important element, rather than treating the recording as a "project" with the band as just one component.
  • He aims to leave room for accidents and chaos, rather than trying to create a perfectly controlled and seamless recording.
  • He believes that the majority of the sound should be established during the basic recording, rather than relying on extensive remixing.
  • He tailors his approach to each band's specific needs and preferences, rather than applying a fixed set of techniques.

2. How does Albini's philosophy differ from that of many contemporary engineers and producers? Albini's approach is the opposite of engineers who see the record as a "project" and the band as just one element, and who try to control every aspect of the recording through techniques like click tracks, computers, and remixing.

[02] Albini's Offer to Nirvana

1. What specific recording studio does Albini recommend for Nirvana? Albini recommends Pachyderm Studio in Cannon Falls, Minnesota, which he describes as having great acoustics and comfortable living accommodations for the band.

2. How does Albini propose to be compensated for his work? Albini does not want to take a royalty on the album, as he believes royalties should go to the band. Instead, he wants to be paid a flat fee like a "plumber", rather than a percentage of sales.

3. Why does Albini say he doesn't need the potential increase in business from working with Nirvana? Albini states that he already has more work than he can handle, and he is not interested in attracting the type of clients that such an association might bring.

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