Listening to the Science of Audio - RMAF 2012

MIT Cables is proud to host:

Special Guest: Col. Lowell E. Graham (ret.) Chairman of the Music Department and the Director of Orchestral Activities at the University of Texas at El Paso

Please join us for a day of informative presentations from some of the industry's most accomplished engineers, composers, producers, and recording engineers.

Where: Aspen Amphitheater, Denver Marriott Tech Center, CO

“Listening to the Science of Audio” & “The Sonic Benefits of High Resolution Audio”
When: Saturday, October 13, 2:00–4:00 PM

Col. Lowell E. Graham (ret.) - Special Guest
A native of Greeley, Colorado, Lowell E. Graham is the Chairman of the Music Department and the Director of Orchestral Activities at the University of Texas at El Paso. He is the recipient of the “Abraham Chavez” Professorship in Music. He enjoys a distinguished career conducting ensembles in many musical media, including the Green Bay Symphony Orchestra, the Virginia Symphony, the Spokane Symphony, the Valdosta Symphony Orchestra, the El Paso Symphony Orchestra, the American Promenade Orchestra, the Greeley Philharmonic, Chamber Music Palm Beach Chamber Orchestra and many more. In 2006 he was named the “Director Honorifico Anual” for the Orquesta Sinfonica Nacional de Paraguay. He has held numerous conducting positions to include that of the Commander and Conductor of the United States Air Force’s premier musical organization in Washington, DC. As a USAF Colonel, he became the senior ranking musician in the Department of Defense.

He is a graduate of the University of Northern Colorado where he received a Bachelor of Arts degree in music education in 1970 and a Master of Arts degree in performance the following year. In 1977 he became the first person to be awarded the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in orchestral conducting from The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.

In March 1995, he was honored with membership in the prestigious American Bandmasters Association, the professional association of master conductors and musicians. Membership is considered the highest honor achievable by American bandsmen; it recognized outstanding achievement in the field of concert bands.

Graham has released recordings on five labels–Klavier, Telarc, Mark, Altissimo and Wilson–that have been recognized for both their artistic and sonic excellence. These recordings have been recognized in Stereophile’s “Records to Die-For” list, The Absolute Sound’s “The Super Disc List,” as well as one having won a Grammy.

Tony Weber
A 40-year veteran of the audio industry, Tony has been involved in many aspects of high-performance music systems, currently serving as Regional Sales Manager for Cary Audio. As a published and recorded composer/arranger and a performer in several world-class ensembles, as well as a successful speaker designer and recording engineer, Tony bridges the gap between technology and music

In college, Tony studied acoustics of rooms and of musical instruments with Dr. Harvey Fletcher, the developer of stereo recording while at Bell Labs. He studied trumpet with Doc Severinsen, Adolph Herseth and Rafael Mendes, and earned an audition with Buddy Rich at the age of 19. Tony was chosen for music composition master classes with Roy Harris, Randall Thompson, Walter Piston and Vaclav Nehlybel. He was one of 80 members of the American Choral Directors Association to be chosen for a week-long master class in conducting with John Rutter, culminating in a New Year’s Eve concert of Rutter’s music in Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center.

He has sung with many of the world’s most prominent conductors as a member of the LA Master Chorale (Roger Wagner Chorale when recording), Chicago Chamber Choir (Associate Conductor), and Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Tony was involved in engineering 83 audiophile recordings in the 1970s and 80s, four of which were nominated for Grammys®, assisting John Eargle, Marc Aubort, Stan Ricker and Ken Kreisel.

Tim Brisson
Tim is a practicing patent attorney in the high-tech sector, as well as a degreed electrical engineer. He worked for a number of years at MIT Cables, developing and designing audio/video cables and power conditioning technology, and was awarded several patents for his designs. He also developed and presented technical training materials to their worldwide network of dealers and distributors

Tim is also an active musician, playing guitar for 30 years and serving as the musical director and arranger for a 9-piece band with horns, dedicated to the sound of Memphis soul and the music of Stax Records. He has performed with many leading blues musicians, and appeared with Frankie Lee at the 2007 Blues Music Awards, serving as his band leader for several years.

Tim’s & Tony’s Topic
Tim and Tony, as practicing musicians who also have a strong technical background, will discuss and demonstrate (using guitar and synthesizer and audio clips) the music and acoustic theory behind how instruments produce sound, how intervals and harmonics affect how things sound, and how our ears and brains perceive musical information. You will gain an understanding of the incredibly complex task facing recording engineers and equipment designers as they strive to recreate all of the different information present in a recording environment, and how difficult it is for us as listeners to achieve the illusion of reality in our homes. Armed with this knowledge, you will be better able to use your favorite music to evaluate systems and setups, and then to enjoy that music even more.

Cookie Marenco
Blue Coast Records founder and producer/engineer, Cookie Marenco, is a five-time Grammy® nominee, recorded more than 400 music albums, was an A&R representative for Windham Hill Records and received a gold record for “Winter Solstice 2”. In 1997 her association with Liquid Audio positioned her to record the first live performance distributed on the internet for download. Currently, she is involved in the advancement of high resolution audio through the use of DSD (Direct Stream Digital) recording technology.

With more than 20 years in the music industry, Cookie Marenco’s creative and technical skills have touched almost every aspect of the music and audio business. Marenco is an advocate of using analog tape for recording while being a pioneer of DSD digital delivery to music lover’s worldwide.

In 2009 Marenco founded Downloads NOW! to deliver high resolution downloads from Blue Coast Record to fans worldwide. A demand for quality content encouraged her to expand the catalog which now includes more than 130 album titles. In 2010 Downloads NOW! became the first digital music distributor to sell DSD audio downloads direct to fans. She partners with Sony, Korg, Super Audio Center, Playback Designs, JRivers, Merging Technologies, MIT Cable, Millennia Media, Light Harmonics and many others, to advance DSD for home and professional use.

OTR Studios, Marenco’s commercial recording facility, was founded over two decades ago and is based in the San Francisco Bay area. Marenco is on the Board of Advisers for the University of the Pacific’s Music Management program, has been a governor at NARAS and recently was a panelist for the ASARP (The Association for the Study of the Art of Record Production) 2011 conference.

Cookie’s Topic
As a proponent of both analog tape as a recording medium and using DSD technology to produce the very highest resolution digital media available, Cookie will discuss her experiences in both recording and preparing music for mastering and release. Her perspective as a classically-trained musician gives her a great frame of reference as she listens to her recording processes to make sure they are as accurate as possible in all ways. She has recorded many types of music and will provide an insider’s perspective on what is important to consider as she captures the sound of the musicians.

Paul Stubblebine
Paul began his mastering career in San Francisco in 1973. For eleven years he worked at a recording and mastering facility on Folsom Street which, originally owned by CBS, was later bought by David Rubinson and became known as The Automatt.

During the CBS period, in addition to the CBS catalog, the studio also brought in outside work from the Record Plant and Wally Heider's including records by The Grateful Dead, The New Riders of the Purple Sage, Sly Stone, Santana, Joan Baez, Bill Evans, Tony Bennett and Jane Fonda's phenomenally successful workout record engineered by Leslie Ann Jones.

This is also where the mastering was done for the US releases of Rough Trade and Factory Records including Joy Division, and New Order. During this period, records mastered at the Automatt were on the charts continuously.

Paul then went on to become chief engineer at Rocket Lab, also in San Francisco, where he worked until starting his own company, Paul Stubblebine Mastering, in 1997. Since then he has mastered Grammy®-winning recordings for Mickey Hart, Ry Cooder, Dominick Argento, John Lee Hooker and Van Morrison, among others. Paul has done mastering for Reference Recordings (LP, CD and Hi-Res) since 1986. He is also a co-founder of The Tape Project, which releases great music on master-quality reel to reel tape.

Paul’s Topic
Paul has worked on both sides of the recording chain, but specializes in mastering recordings, the final process to prepare them for release. Like final editing in the movie industry, mastering is where the final choices are made that affect equalization, imaging, soundstaging, placement of instruments, and the many other things that audiophiles listen for. Paul will talk about how he listens and evaluates recordings, and what parameters and priorities are most important to produce the final products we all enjoy.

Bruce Brisson
Bruce Brisson engineered the first purposefully built audio cable in 1981, which was the first of many of his designs and patents he licensed to Monster Cable. Many of Monster’s products are still using his designs today and have become some of Monster’s most enduring and successful products. In 1984, he founded Music Interface Technologies (MIT), which has been a leading force in the research, design and manufacture of high performance audio, video and AC products.

Since forming MIT, Bruce has also designed or manufactured cables and components for many other well known audio companies such as Spectral Audio, Jeff Rowland Design Group, Wilson Audio Specialties, Martin Logan Electrostatic Loudspeakers and Goldmund Audio. MIT products are used in many recording studios and have become crucial components in many Hollywood productions. If you have listened to a hit record or attended a hit movie within the past three decades, you have undoubtedly heard many of his products.

Bruce's Topic
Carrying on the topic of the consumer side of the industry, Bruce will take the audience through the process of interfacing components in an audio/video system. He will discuss how to measure the performance of an interface and how to correlate the measurement to what the listener hears. He will continue his presentation discussing three dimensionality and soundstaging, helping the audience learn how to optimize their system for a better overall listening and viewing experience.

Tam Henderson & Marcia Martin of Reference Recordings
Tam Henderson & Marcia Martin of reference recordings– at the forefront of technical advancement in audio recording for the past 30 years, delivering high-resolution playback with their HRx recordings.