The Bakery Gets into a Xmas Mood

Mastering engineer Eric Boulanger, founder of Culver City, CA-based mastering facility The Bakery, has mastered Laura Xmas, the new holiday project by Grammy Award- and multi Latin Grammy Award-winning Italian vocal superstar Laura Pausini.
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Los Angeles, CA (November 22, 2016) Mastering engineer Eric Boulanger, founder of Culver City, CA-based mastering facility The Bakery, has mastered Laura Xmas, the new holiday project by Grammy Award- and multi Latin Grammy Award-winning Italian vocal superstar Laura Pausini.

Boulanger was reportedly hand-picked to master the album by the project’s Grammy-nominated producer Jason Lee and veteran multi Grammy-winning engineer Al Schmitt. Pausini and Patrick Williams served as co-producers. Steve Genewick served as co-engineer. 

Boulanger recalls, “It was very smooth sailing on this one. I think there might have only been a couple of revisions, if there were any at all. I am familiar enough with Al Schmitt’s work to know that the mixes will always be right in the sweet spot, which makes mastering a dream. Everything will be where it needs to be.

“They were very specific though—the main goal was to maintain Al’s lush sound in a 192 kHz high-headroom, high-resolution mix while boosting the overall level and creating consumer formats—CD, digital download, streaming and vinyl. That was a lot of different versions to keep track of, but we accomplished it without any problems.”

Pausini has released different album configuration: Laura Xmas (standard version, mostly in English, with a bit of Spanish and Latin), Laura Navidad (mostly in Spanish) and Laura Xmas French Edition.

Boulanger wanted to create the right festive atmosphere, even though the sessions took place in late summer. “I strung lights around the studio, and I found some other holiday decorations to put up,” he recalls. “I wore a Santa hat too. It’s important to get the right vibe in the studio, no matter what kind of project you’re working on. A holiday project needs a holiday atmosphere, as far as I’m concerned.” 

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