What's Up with the 25th Anniversary CD & DVD?
Thu., Oct. 26. 2017 5:04pm EDT
J. Jackson, lead singer and lyricist for ApologetiX here again.
In case you're wondering, we haven't forgotten about making CDs and DVDs from our 25th Anniversary Concert in August. We've been on that project for about two months now. Ironically, it can take a lot of work in the studio to make a live CD sound its best. That reminds me of the old Dolly Parton quote, "It costs a lot of money to look this cheap."
We've done a number of live CDs over the years and, as any artist who's ever made a live album can tell you, things invariably go wrong during the recording process — even if you loved the performance, you might not like the recording -- so there's usually a lot of post-production needed in the studio.
For example, many of my vocals at the 25th Anniversary Concert were recorded "too hot" and wound up clipping. If you don't know what that means, Wikipedia says, "Clipping is a form of waveform distortion that occurs when an amplifier is overdriven and attempts to deliver an output voltage or current beyond its maximum capability."
I don't know the physics of it; I just know it makes the recording sound distorted and unlistenable. When that happens on songs, I have to go into the studio with a handheld mic and try to sing the same way I would at a live show, so it sounds authentic but not distorted.
Another thing that can happen during a live recording is that some singers or musicians may not be able to hear themselves properly on stage and therefore may sing or play some bad notes or strain their voices trying to get louder. Nobody wants to hear that for the rest of their lives.
And sometimes a recording mic doesn't pick up one of the singers or musicians at all on a song, or it records them so low in the mix that you can't fix it just by adjusting the volume. Anyway, I'm almost done fixing my vocals. When Chris was in from Florida two weeks ago, he fixed his.
In my experience doing about 1500 concerts over the past 25 years, the bigger the show, the more likely that things will go wrong. And if you're trying to record it, you'll have 10 times as many things go wrong. I understand why Paul Stanley of KISS supposedly said the band's Alive II album was "as live as it needs to be."
Our 20:20 Vision CD was an exception that took the "warts and all" approach, but we didn't have nearly as many recording problems, because it was all recorded on one track in the audience. But that didn't really allow for post-production. This time around, we have that luxury, and we want it to sound its best.
There were 19 performers on stage at our 25th Anniversary Concert, and we recorded each individually, so there's a lot of to go over, but we're well underway. You'll probably see another studio ApX CD before the live CD, though. Then the DVD should come out two or three months after the live CD, Lord willing. That's how it worked with our 20:20 projects in 2012.