Los Angeles, CA (June 30, 2008)–Jan Stevens, the main music composer behind NBC’s hit series Scrubs and ABC’s new sitcom Samantha Who?, has spent the last 15 years coveting the “Neumann sound.” Now he has a TLM 170 of his own.
“It’s just that Neumann mics aren’t cheap,” Stevens laughed. “So all these microphone ads would come out from other manufacturers that promised to capture the ‘Neumann Sound’ at a fraction of the cost. So over 15 years, I bought 10 of them–all different kinds!”
Evidently an eternal optimist, the story was the same each time. “I’d get out my Collings acoustic guitar–a truly magnificent instrument with a huge sound–hook up the new mic, and fail time and time again to capture the richness that I was hearing in the room. It’s hard to put my finger on it, but it was like part of the spectrum just wasn’t there.”
Needing to record whistling for a song for Samantha Who?, Stevens contacted Dan Wallin, sound engineer for Pixar hit, Ratatouille, who insisted that the Neumann TLM 170 was the ultimate mic for the job. Stevens asked his friend and assistant Gregory Wachter if he could borrow his TLM 170.
When Wachter went home, he left the TLM 170 with Stevens and his Collings guitar. Stevens used it to record some guitar parts for both Samantha Who? and Scrubs. “It was like the veil had been lifted!” he exclaimed. “Again, it’s hard to describe, but the sound was fuller. It had so much movement. It was a quantum leap up from my other mics, and it didn’t take any fancy engineering. This was the sound that I had always been after.”
“The kicker is that with all the money I spent on the other mics,” he continued, “I could have bought one-and-a-half TLM 170s and been done with it!”