New York City, NY – January 25th, 2011
Unlike the recorded music sector of the music industry, the publishing world is still thriving for those who have been able to adapt to the changes. Known as the largest music publisher in the world, EMI Music Publishing is indeed one of those companies and still a well oiled conglomerate dead set on the success of its affiliated writers. Nestled in one of the hippest neighborhoods in New York City (The Meat Packing District), EMI Music Publishing boasts a catalogue and current roster of some of the most successful artists, songwriters and producers in the game. A walk down the maze of halls in this 20,000sf facility may lead you to nodding heads and a quick hello to a range of diverse multi-platinum music icons such as Billy Joel, The Fray, Pink, and James Blunt to name just a few.
Walking into the EMI Music Publishing offices in New York City, one will first see a grand piano (actually picked out by Billy Joel for the company) resting in an impressive modern setting. Ironically, or maybe not so much, this piano resembles the very spirit of this company in which after spending time here, the fact that music runs through the veins of its employees becomes obvious.
Besides the staff, another very important component at the heart of the EMI facility is the newly created “EMI Project Writing Room” which was primarily created for the roster of EMI artists that find themselves in a holding pattern in New York City. “When you’re a hit songwriter, you are traveling quite a bit and find yourself in different cities at different times,” stated Jake Ottmann who is VP Creative for EMI. “We built this room up for top-notch artists and songwriters that are in town and need a great place to relax and write music.
Sometimes it’s a few hours here and there just for basic writing, and other times it’s a full on technical writing/producing session that could end up on a master, just like a recent session that went down with an affiliated artist/writer/producer Matt Blair who was working out of here last month.” Matt Blair, (who you will be hearing a lot about in the near future and beyond) says of his experience, “I’ve worked in the EMI writing room with a few different writers/producers and it’s always a great vibe there. Living in a time where ‘demos’ can be the start of a master, the set up makes it really easy to dive in and create some blueprints.”
When putting this writing room together, EMI made a calculated decision to go with SONAR X1 and a V-Studio 100 all powered by a tailored PC Audio Labs machine. They also chose an Avantone CK-6 large capsule cardioid FET condenser microphone to capture the performances. “We were looking for a solution that covered all,” explained Richard Reuss who is head of the technical team for EMI. “We wanted something that covered it all delivered in one box. We didn’t want to get into purchasing plug-ins from one company, and then synths from another; we decided on SONAR X1 Producer not only for everything it comes with, but also for the way the workflow exists in the program.” “Our writers are very unique and diverse,” added Jake Ottmann. “SONAR X1 is not only a cutting edge recording tool, but also an amazing writing tool as well, and that was very important to us in our decision; not to mention the fact that the stock plug-ins, synths and drum modules are just as good as, if not better than anything else on the market. It’s been working so well for us that our in-house audio team has been using it for post-house related projects as well – we’re pretty psyched to get this much mileage out of the system.”
Although EMI Music Publishing has a huge facility for office space, it was obvious to the staffers that there was not going to be a lot of square footage allocated to this music room. “I think one of the selling points for us was the fact that we don’t have a ton of room in this spot [the room itself], so having the Pro Channel on every track to get a big console sound without the console is huge for us,” explained Richard Reuss who has been a longtime SONAR user.
The “Pro Channel” is just one of the many new aspects of SONAR X1 which also features the innovative “Skylight” user interface, an all new content “Browser,” “Drag and Drop” technology for loops, midi files, effects, “FX Chains” [the ability to save chains of effects and then drop those strings of effects right into an effect bin on a track], “Track Templates” [the ability to save tracks in any state using any components and then drag and drop that template into a project] and much more.