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Classic Tracks

We break down and analyse how these golden classic tracks were created, then recorded, mixed, and produced -- with contributions from the record producers, sound engineers and artists involved.

Displaying 85 - 105 of 154 items
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    Classic Tracks: REM ‘Radio Free Europe’

    Producers: REM, Mitch Easter, Don Dixon

    REMs first single wasnt just an embryonic form of the style and sound that would later make them so successful, it was also a gem of the American new wave. But it took a long time coming...

    Techniques Nov 2009
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    Classic Tracks: Donna Summer ‘I Feel Love’

    Producers: Giorgio Moroder, Pete Bellotte • Engineer: Juergen Koppers

    The pioneering electronica of I Feel Love didnt just revolutionise disco, it changed dance music forever. This is the story of how it was made...

    Techniques Oct 2009
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    Classic Tracks: The Kinks ‘You Really Got Me’

    Producer & Engineer: Shel Talmy

    There are very few records whose influence can be so strongly felt after 45 years as the Kinks You Really Got Me. At the controls was Shel Talmy, who tells us the story of a song that changed pop music.

    Techniques Sep 2009
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    Classic Tracks: Aerosmith ‘Walk This Way’

    Producer: Jack Douglas • Engineer: Jay Messina

    In 1975, Aerosmith stormed into the mainstream with their Toys In The Attic album, and in doing so set the tone for a decade of West Coast heavy metal.

    Techniques Aug 2009
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    Classic Tracks: The Moody Blues ‘Nights In White Satin’

    Producer: Tony Clarke • Engineer: Derek Varnals

    Thunderous reverbs, haunting vocals and Mellotron galore: we tell the story of recording the Moody Blues symphonic rock masterpiece, Nights In White Satin.

    Techniques Jul 2009
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    Classic Tracks: John Lennon ‘Whatever Gets You Thru The Night’

    Producer: John Lennon • Engineers: Roy Cicala, Shelly Yakus

    Engineer Roy Cicala worked on all of John Lennon's albums from Imagine onwards, and in Whatever Gets You Thru The Night, recorded this solo number one hit single.

    Techniques Jun 2009
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    Classic Tracks: Van Morrison ‘Moondance’

    Producer: Van Morrison • Engineers: Shelly Yakus, Elliot Scheiner

    On his second solo album, Van Morrison took the production reins for the first time. Manning the desk was engineer Shelly Yakus, who tells the story of recording Moondance.

    Techniques May 2009
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    Classic Tracks: Heavy Zebra ‘Karla’

    Producer: Heavy Zebra • Engineer: Kevin Byrne

    Blighted by drug abuse and mental illness, Heavy Zebra never fulfilled their early promise. Nevertheless, the deranged majesty of their 1972 single Karla makes it a bona fide classic track.

    Techniques Apr 2009
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    Classic Tracks: The Flamingos ‘I Only Have Eyes For You’

    Producers: George Goldner, Terry Johnson • Engineer: Allen Weintraub

    This is the story of how an inspired rearrangement of an old song created a track that, 50 years on, remains a genuine and enduring classic.

    Techniques Mar 2009
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    Classic Tracks: Rick Astley 'Never Gonna Give You Up'

    Producers: Stock, Aitken and Waterman

    Producers Stock, Aitken and Waterman developed a massively successful formula for making pop records — and the story of Rick Astleys 1987 smash hit, Never Gonna Give You Up, is a perfect guide to the SAW assembly line...

    Techniques Feb 2009
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    Classic Tracks: Status Quo 'Rockin' All Over The World'

    Producer: Pip Williams • Engineer: John Eden

    In 1977 Status Quo brought in producer Pip Williams to help them clean up their act. The result was a hit album and a best-selling single — 'Rockin' All Over The World'.

    Techniques Jan 2009
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    Classic Tracks: The Pogues 'Fairytale Of New York'

    Producer: Steve Lillywhite • Engineers: Chris Dickie, Steve Lillywhite

    A Christmas song was an unexpected move from a group like the Pogues, but the story of heartbreak and pain that is 'Fairytale Of New York' eventually became the band's biggest commercial success.

    Techniques Dec 2008
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    Classic Tracks: Afrika Bambaataa & The Soulsonic Force 'Planet Rock'

    Producer: Arthur Baker

    For mixing Kraftwerk's synthetic beats and simple melodies with New York rap, 'Planet Rock' and producer Arthur Baker can arguably be credited with creating an entirely new genre: hip-hop. This is how it happened...

    Techniques Nov 2008
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    Classic Tracks: Paul Simon 'You Can Call Me Al'

    Producer: Paul Simon • Engineer: Roy Halee

    Paul Simon's Graceland album combined a huge mixture of musical styles and was recorded in studios all over the world. The man responsible for putting it all together, both sonically and physically, was Simon's long-time engineer Roy Halee. This is how he did it...

    Techniques Sep 2008
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    Classic Tracks: DEVO 'Whip It'

    Producers: Devo, Robert Margouleff • Engineers: Robert Margouleff, Howard Siegel

    Armed with a subversive view of society and a command of catchy synth-pop, Devo burst into the charts in 1980 with weird classic 'Whip It'. Producer Robert Margouleff talks de-evolution...

    Techniques Jul 2008
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    Classic Tracks: Blondie 'Hanging On The Telephone'

    Producer: Mike Chapman • Engineer: Peter Coleman

    The partnership between Blondie and producer Mike Chapman created a perfect pop record - and catapulted the group from the underground to mainstream chart success.

    Techniques Jun 2008
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    Classic Tracks: Luciano Pavarotti 'Nessun Dorma'

    Producers: Ray Minshull, Michael Woolcock • Engineers: James Lock, Kenneth Wilkinson

    Recording opera requires a completely different approach, environment and technique to pop or rock music — a fact that has seldom been better demonstrated than in Pavarotti's 1972 recording of 'Nessun Dorma'.

    Techniques May 2008
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    Classic Tracks: Frankie Goes To Hollywood 'Relax'

    Producer: Trevor Horn • Engineers: Steve Lipson, Julian Mendelsohn

    The debut single from Liverpool's Frankie Goes To Hollywood was the result of adventurous production and enjoyed massive chart success - as well as creating a great deal of controversy.

    Techniques Apr 2008
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    Classic Tracks: The Ramones 'Pet Sematary'

    Producer: Jean Beauvoir • Engineer: Fernando Kral

    Undisputed kings of the three-chord thrash and arguably responsible for punk rock, it took over 10 years and the theme song to a Stephen King film to secure serious US chart success for the Ramones...

    Techniques Mar 2008
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    Classic Tracks: The Four Tops: 'Reach Out I'll Be There'

    Producers: Brian Holland, Lamont Dozier, Eddie Holland

    One of the most famous record labels of all time, Motown fostered a group of uniquely talented writers, engineers and musicians who often had to invent the equipment and techniques they used to keep their music at the cutting edge. Lamont Dozier explains how it was done...

    Techniques Feb 2008
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    Classic Tracks: Lynyrd Skynyrd 'Sweet Home Alabama'

    Producer: Al Kooper • Engineers: Al Kooper, Rodney Mills

    In 1973, a band from Florida and California went to a studio in Georgia to record a song, provoked by a Canadian, about Alabama - and managed to define the sound of Southern rock while they were at it.

    Techniques Jan 2008


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