Pictured at the AES 60th Anniversary event are (l-r) Irv Joel and Harry Hirsch, of the Oral History Project; NY Section Committee member David Bialik; past President Floyd Toole; Executive Director Roger Furness; incoming President Jim Anderson; and NY Section Chair Noah Simon.New York, NY (March 17, 2008)-On March 11, 60 years to the day of its formation, the Audio Engineering Society celebrated its Diamond Anniversary in the city of its birth. The small, dedicated group of professional engineers introduced in 1948 has grown to over 14,000 members and 169 sections in 48 countries worldwide.
To mark the occasion, the AES New York Section hosted a standing-room-only celebratory gathering at New York’s New School for Social Research. The event was highlighted by a screening of excerpts from the forthcoming AES Oral History Project. Tantalizing anecdotes by legendary Columbia Records engineer Frank Liaco; Louis Goodfriend, first editor of the AES Journal; inventor and AES officer Norman Pickering, and Les Paul, the godfather of multitrack recording, provided the audience with insights, revelations and, thanks to Paul, occasional laughs.
Comprised of over 120 exclusive, hour-long interviews, the anthology was shot by Irv Joel and edited by Harry Hirsch, members of the Historical Committee. The AES will begin making interviews from the Oral History Project available, on DVD, later this year.
Following a welcome from NY Section Chair Noah Simon and remarks by AES Executive Director Roger Furness and incoming President Jim Anderson, revered audio guru (and former AES president) Floyd Toole discussed the trailblazing work of Harry F. Olson. A pivotal force in technology development, Olson presented the first technical paper at the initial AES meeting. Mr. Toole’s address illustrated how far the art and science of audio has evolved since 1948.
As it begins its seventh decade, the AES is recognized as the leading forum for the exchange of critical information concerning the rapidly evolving field of sound recording, preservation and distribution. The organization’s focus encompasses education, health and hearing concerns and audio’s integral role in TV and radio broadcast, satellite, Internet, motion picture, electronic games, wireless, live concert, house of worship and theatrical applications.
The organizations’ two annual conventions (U.S. and Europe) attract thousands of audio professionals and students eager to learn from the masters and to network with their peers. The AES Journal and an ongoing series of international conferences, seminars and Section meetings underscore the full spectrum of member interests and concerns.