I stated a couple days ago that I took some time to re-arrange my studio. Well, I thought I’d expound on that a bit. You see, I like re-arranging…and using words like “expound”. It makes me feel special.
Every so often the music studio starts to feel a little stale to me. I can see invisible moss growing on the amps and drum set. There are dust bunnies the size of Yorkshire Terriers waiting to come out and bite me(or make me sneeze). So in my anal-retentive head I feel I need to reinvent the room I come down to write in and create in. I’ve attempted the perfect scenario many times down here, but I’ve never quite gotten it right. In my head the perfect situation would be a separate control room and a playing area off of it. You know, just like a studio is supposed to be like. Well, that’s just not going to happen. Not in my lifetime. But after some pondering, moving, aching of the back and a few sneezes here and there I feel I’ve gotten it right. And I owe it all the the Zenith Allegro Quadraphonic stereo that’s been sitting down in here for a year.
Yes, a Zenith Allegro Quadraphonic stereo has made this more than just a practice space. It’s made it my home underneath my other home. I brought down my classical record collection(and there might be a couple Cheech and Chong albums as well…they’re my mom and dad’s you see). But the real joy are those classical records. They allow me to completely open up my head as I’m writing and use words like “expound” and “repugnant” to my heart’s desire. When I sit down here and type away on my nearly 10 year old Dell Dimension I don’t feel like just some guy typing. I feel like someone with something to say(odd, as I’m a guy typing about nothing at this moment). Beethoven, Franck, Chopin, Mozart, Debussy, these are the cats that put me in a calm place. They make the “beat lab” into something more. A “rhythm conservatory” maybe.
Sure, the Zenith Quadraphonic is one of those relics that audiophiles and hi-end audio equipment retailers stick their nose up at and go “Pfft. Umm, a good place for that would be the dumpster. Come back when you can afford a Music Hall table with an Ortofon cartridge.” But really, for its time the Allegro Quadraphonic was a hell of a system. Four speakers, turntable, AM/FM radio and an 8-track player. It was my wife’s grandparents stereo. Her grandpa bought it brand new in 1974. Well, my father-in-law had the stereo in his chicken coop/junk storage building out at his farm for years. He said I could take it if I wanted to. Sure, why not. Well, I found out why not when I got home and realized the turntable didn’t work. I took it to an electronics dealer and $120 later I had a working turntable. I already had my Audio Technica AT-PL120(which I love and will probably never part with), but I thought it would be cool to have an extra player for downstairs. Well, despite being fixed, there was still some wobbly action going on with the player and it was enough that it bugged me when I’d listen to records. But the classical albums, they’re different. The wobbly thing doesn’t really bug me with them. So now the Quadraphonic has found a new purpose. And that purpose is to soundtrack my writings with sonatas, concertos, and the occasional stoner joke(far out, man).
Sorry. This was just an excuse for me to show off the studio. We’ll be back to our regularly scheduled program tomorrow.