Fabulous sounds are never a substitute for great performance. More and more, I find that the right mic, in the right place, with mild EQ and compression ends up the favoured sound by both the artist and myself. When I work too long on a sound, I usually end up with a tired performer (and a tired me).
Proudly announcing to all involved, the model numbers of six pieces of gear in the chain will surely impress everyone in the control room, but when I A/B to the original simple set-up (which I’ve held), the first usually wins. There are exceptions to this rule, but I feel that good performance only lasts so long and I prefer to have it on tape, not lost over discussion about things that might not matter to the people who buy records.
Bob Doidge – Producer/Engineer (Cowboy Junkies, Crash Test Dummies, Daniel Lanois, Jane Child, Prairie Oyster, Sherry Kean, U2)