Lincoln Mayorga and Amanda McBroom on Growing up in Hollywood Town (1980)
No wonder the music recording is a kind of arts, to complete each album need dedication with skills. Long ago since the primordial recognized recording on Earth more than a century by the inventors. The goal of music recording is to re-create the sound as real as possible from the original source.
Beyond the performance of the musicians, the skills of music recorder is also important to create the elaborate album. Doug Sax and Lincoln Mayorga are among of the masters of the music industry.
Doug Sax, a mastering engineer created The Mastering Lab in 1967, a music recorder with his brother. He also associated and mastered some albums of Bob Dylan, Barbra Streisand, Leonard Cohen, Pink Floyd, Frank Zappa, the Rolling Stones, The Who and the Eagles.
Doug Sax and his studio
Lincoln Mayorga is a talented and professional musician, he was also an artistic director of the TownHall Records which was established in 1964.
Doug Sax and Lincoln Mayorga know each other since they were young, they met in the orchestra of Bancroft Junior High School in Los Angeles, United States in 1950.
With passion in the art of music and aiming to improve the music recording, in 1970, Sax and Mayorga the buddies founded Sheffield Lab Recordings, classified as an audiophile label which produced direct-to-disc classical and jazz albums.
The common music recording or the conventional recording process begins with recording from studio microphone to mixing console, then pass to multi channel recorder then send to another mixing console to conduct the sound into 2 channels after that record to master tape then play the master tape via control console to deliver the sound to cutting amp and cutting head in order to make lacquer master disc, the lacquer master disc is the source to manufacture mother stamper and metal master disc. This is how to record an album concisely with traditional way during 1970’s.
Moreover, the directive to disc had an extraordinary formation to form the music album, the method of recording the sound via studio microphones to mixing console, then transfer to cutting amp and cutting head in order to manufacture the lacquer master disc for making mother stamper and metal master disc afterward. This special procedure recreates the sound as pure as the original source somehow the copy combined with hissing sounds and echo from the atmosphere of the studio, anyway the standard of Direct to disc recording evolve the new phenomenon to the music industry, it keeps the signal of sound so chaste clean unlike the songs recorded with the conventional recording lose some detail of the sound signal by the fussy.
However, the disadvantage of the direct to disc system is the high cost of expense to record. Any mistake during the recording, the process must be re-new, cannot be edited. The unity of teamwork is important.
The Sheffield Lab brew many worthwhile albums to market, among the popular ones are collaboration between Lincoln Mayorga as a pianist and Amanda McBroom as a singer. The duo shaped the albums concomitant Growing up in Hollywood Town (1980) and West of Oz (1981).
The most remarkable of the projects is the album Growing up in Hollywood Town, It was performed in the Sheffield Lab Studios at the MGM sound stage in Culver City, California, United States in 1980, with a small orchestra containing instruments associated with classical and jazz.
The style of the album is something deep into 1980’s, was charmed with electric instrument like synthesizer (no matter you like it or not, but it’s already classic stuff today), Plus the sound is so acoustic crystal-clear when listen with the nifty speakers.
The suggested tracks of the album, First is Amanda is beautiful and haunting, it can be considered as the signature of the album and recommend to listen as an audio testing song due to the acoustic and dynamic of the sound, second is The Portrait, so meaningful, one of the best McBroom’s song, but rarely be recognized by the public and the last is The Rose, a popular old school song written for the film with the same name, McBroom was awarded to Golden Globes by this song. Even Amanda McBroom is not an illustrious singer, but she is talented enough to shine bright time to time, plus she’s also a professional lyricist, there is plenty of her performance to discover more.
The Sheffield lab mastered the album since the foremost commercial one in 1968 till the aftermost in 1990’s, the Sheffield lab innovated the new kind of melodic songs with high quality realistic sound. The collectors still seek the Sheffield lab’s collection from vinyl to compact disc especially the listeners who want a decent albums to set their Audio System.