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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 106 - 126 of 154 items
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    Classic Tracks: Stevie Wonder 'Pastime Paradise'

    Producer: Stevie Wonder • Engineers: Gary Olazabal, John Fischbach

    Epic in every sense of the word — unning to 21 songs, involving more than 120 musicians and taking almost two years to complete — Stevie Wonder's Songs In The Key Of Life was in many ways the high-point of an already illustrious career. This is the story of how it was created.

    Techniques Dec 2007
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    Classic Tracks: Billy Swan 'I Can Help'

    Producers: Chip Young, Billy Swan • Engineer: Chip Young

    In 1974 Billy Swan walked into Chip Young's Young'un Sound studio and, in two takes, recorded a million-selling single that had taken him 20 minutes to write. This is how it was done...

    Techniques Nov 2007
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    Classic Tracks: Ian Dury & The Blockheads 'Hit Me With Your Rhythm Stick'

    Producers: Chaz Jankel, Laurie Latham • Engineers: Laurie Latham, Chaz Jankel

    The story of how a characteristically chaotic and unorthodox 1978 recording session took Ian Dury & The Blockheads to the top of the UK charts.

    Techniques Oct 2007
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    Classic Tracks: Madonna 'Like A Virgin'

    Producers: Nile Rodgers, Madonna, Stephen Bray • Engineer: Jason Corsaro

    In mid-1984 Madonna arrived at New York City's Power Station studios with Nile Rodgers to record the album that would make her an international superstar - using cutting-edge 12-bit technology.

    Techniques Sep 2007
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    Classic Tracks: Fleetwood Mac 'Go Your Own Way'

    Producers: Richard Dashut, Ken Caillat, Fleetwood Mac • Engineers: Ken Caillat, Richard Dashut

    In 1976, in the face of deteriorating personal relationships and massive record company pressure, Fleetwood Mac managed to create a record that would go on to sell 30 million copies.

    Techniques Aug 2007
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    Classic Tracks: The Only Ones 'Another Girl, Another Planet'

    Producer: Alan Mair • Engineers: John Burns, Robert Ash

    Although never a commercial success, the Only One's 'Another Girl, Another Planet' has proved to be massively influential; and nearly 30 years after its original release, it's finally getting the recognition it deserves.

    Techniques Jul 2007
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    Classic Tracks: Tricky 'Black Steel'

    Producers: Tricky • Mark Saunders

    Tricky's highly unorthodox approach to recording and making music led to the creation of one of the most unique and critically lauded records of the '90s.

    Techniques Jun 2007
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    Classic Tracks: Charlie Rich 'The Most Beautiful Girl In The World'

    Producer: Billy Sherrill • Engineer: Lou Bradley

    1973's 'The Most Beautiful Girl In The World' was one of the defining moments of the Nashville sound, and was the product of a finely-honed studio recording process.

    Techniques May 2007
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    Classic Tracks: The Ronettes 'Be My Baby'

    Producer: Phil Spector • Engineer: Larry Levine

    Phil Spector was one of the first producers to realise that a recording studio could be an instrument in itself - and the sound he created over 40 years ago has influenced popular music ever since.

    Techniques Apr 2007
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    Classic Tracks: The Jam 'The Eton Rifles'

    Producers: The Jam, Vic Coppersmith-Heaven • Engineers: Alan Douglas, Vic Coppersmith-Heaven

    'The Eton Rifles' captured both Paul Weller's growing talent as a songwriter and the raw power of his band the Jam, and gave the group their first top 10 hit.

    Techniques Mar 2007
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    Classic Tracks: Depeche Mode 'People Are People'

    Producers: Depeche Mode, Daniel Miller, Gareth Jones • Engineer: Gareth Jones

    Released in 1984, 'People Are People' perfectly combined Depeche Mode's love of pop music and experimentalism, and gave them their first US hit single.

    Techniques Feb 2007
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    Classic Tracks: Les Paul & Mary Ford 'How High The Moon'

    Producer & Engineer: Les Paul

    Les Paul made some of the most innovative records of the 20th Century, but he had to invent multitrack tape recording first...

    Techniques Jan 2007
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    Classic Tracks: Orbital 'Chime'

    Producers: Paul & Phil Hartnoll • Engineers: Tim Hunt, Orbital

    Orbital were renowned for their amazing live shows, and the story of 'Chime', the track that launched their career, shows how they brought their 'live' approach to electronic music to the studio and into the charts.

    Techniques Dec 2006
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    Classic Tracks: Future Sound Of London 'Papua New Guinea'

    Producers: Garry Cobain, Brian Dougans • Engineers: Yage

    In 1991 The Future Sound of London brought their unique brand of experimentalism to the dancefloor with the seminal track, 'Papua New Guinea' — and launched their career in the process.

    Techniques Nov 2006
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    Classic Tracks: The Band 'The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down'

    Producers: The Band, John Simon • Engineers: John Simon, Robbie Robertson, Tony May

    The origins of The Band as Bob Dylan's backing group are well known, but with songs like 'The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down' they forged their own unique American sound.

    Techniques Oct 2006
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    Classic Tracks: Derek & The Dominos 'Layla'

    Producers: Tom Dowd • Derek & The Dominos

    Inspired by a Persian classical poet and a certain Mrs Harrison, 'Layla' went on to become Eric Clapton's most enduring hit.

    Techniques Sep 2006
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    Classic Tracks: The Knack 'My Sharona'

    Producer: Mike Chapman • Engineers: David Tickle, Pete Coleman

    In 1979, at the end of a 13-way bidding war, The Knack went into the studio to record their debut single — a debut single that would go gold in seven days and sell six million copies worldwide. This is the story of how it came to be...

    Techniques Aug 2006
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    Classic Tracks: Bryan Adams 'Run To You'

    Producers: Bryan Adams, Bob Clearmountain • Engineer: Bob Clearmountain

    The Reckless album was a huge success for Bryan Adams, giving rise to six hit singles — but the first one, 'Run To You', was almost never even recorded.

    Techniques Jul 2006
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    Classic Tracks: Madness 'Our House'

    Producers: Clive Langer, Alan Winstanley

    Producers Clive Langer and Alan Winstanley helped to make Madness one of the most successful British bands of the '80s. Find out how they worked their magic on this 1982 classic pop track...

    Techniques Jun 2006
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    Classic Tracks: Dire Straits 'Money For Nothing'

    Producers: Mark Knopfler, Neil Dorfsman • Engineer: Neil Dorfsman

    The Brothers In Arms album turned Dire Straits into one of the biggest-selling bands of all time, thanks to some technical innovation, tough decision-making, and that guitar sound — which was created by accident. Find out how they did it...

    Techniques May 2006
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    Classic Tracks: Big Star 'September Gurls'

    Producer: Big Star • Engineer: John Fry

    Three decades after they disappeared into obscurity, the cult of Big Star continues to grow. John Fry was the engineer and studio owner at Ardent, who oversaw the recording of their now-classic albums #1 Record and Radio City.

    Techniques Apr 2006


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