I dunno if I'd call my mother a "poor shlub," but I think she was pretty typical of
producers/recording directors of her day (50's and early 60's), classical recordings. At a session,
she'd have at least two and sometimes three stopwatches going -- one for the reel of tape, one for
the musician's union time rules and sometimes one strictly tied to the score, although the music
director would usually handle that one. In the recording truck, whomever was operating the tape
machines would run a stopwatch from when he said "we're rolling" over the intercom so he could have
a better than eyeball idea what was left on a reel. Remember that early tape machines had no
time-counters. The 35mm mag-film recorders definitely had mechanical footage indicators.
If you look at pictures of early studios and consoles -- and indeed console literature well into the
80's -- it was a point of excellence to build in a timer. Later consoles got sophisticated enough to
work with time-code and be linked to whatever standard timeclock was running, especially for film
and video production.
In the studio session environment, it was important to keep track of time for two reasons -- 1)
musician's union rules and 2) length of songs geared to singles. Back in ye really olde days, 78
era, timekeeping was important so as not to run out of wax.
-- Tom Fine
----- Original Message -----
From: "Michael Shoshani" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Tuesday, July 03, 2007 12:26 PM
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] LP pressing question
> Tom Fine wrote:
>> When the QC listening was done, it was done with a stop-watch so that times could be known for
>> problem, which were noted.
> That's interesting - I read somewhere that records did not carry time information until after tape
> was introduced, which led me to conclude that the time was calculated by measuring the tape
> footage and dividing it by the speed, rather than having some poor schlub sit there all day with a
> Michael Shoshani