Sunshine Coast, B.C. (December 8, 2020)—Music producer Garth Richardson has spent several months during the coronavirus outbreak renovating and updating his Farm Studios in British Columbia, connecting his house, studio and other buildings on the seven-acre property with a Dante network.
“I want to make it so that anyone can record from anywhere,” says Richardson, whose resume includes Rage Against the Machine, Taylor Swift, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Ozzy Osbourne, Kiss, Alice Cooper and numerous others. The main control room at the Farm Studios, formerly the home of the iconic Little Mountain Sound, features an SSL AWS 900+ mixing console, the latest Pro Tools workstation and a mix of preamps and components from Focusrite, all connected over a Dante network.
“If a vocalist wants to sing alone from the band house, I can just plug a mic preamp into that network jack, and we’re good to go. If they want to sing outdoors in the woods, we can do that, too. The network makes it very easy to set up whatever we might need,” he says. “It’s a very cool concept; musicians can be together in a space, in separate rooms, or separate cabins, all with great views and fresh air everywhere. It’s very relaxing and greatly contributes to the artistic process.”
The Focusrite RedNet units within the workflow include two HD32R 32×32 Dante-to-Digi Link (Pro Tools) converters, three A16R 16×16 Dante-to-analog line-level converters, multiple MP8R eight-channel Dante mic preamps, X2P two-channel Dante desktop mic preamps with independent headphone and monitor outputs, and two AM2 Dante stereo output devices.
“I’m working to make this a very cool and comfortable place to hang out and create—not the regular recording studio. With all the tech available, we’re beginning to forget that we’re dealing with human beings who have feelings and need inspiration,” says Richardson. “We’ve even recorded drums outside, which has been phenomenal. The drummer raved that it was the best thing he had ever done. The Dante network allows us to pretty much try anything we can think of.”
Located on B.C.’s picturesque Sunshine Coast, the Farm Studios is well appointed for recording during the pandemic. “For probably the next couple of years, we’re all going to deal with social distancing concerns, so people can come up here and get away from the world, isolate and make some music,” said Richardson. “While long-distance remote collaboration is possible, there’s much to be said for human interaction. Bands and performers can come here with their social bubble, get away from the city, and be safe.
“We just need to keep an eye out for bears.”
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