Suspending the mics wouldn't get rid of the SPLs in free air as the subway passes, but I do think
you were able not to pick up sympathetic rumbles that would come up through a mic stand.
In all of the "golden era" classical recordings made in Europe you can hear various stuff in the
background. Usually it's 1950s and 60s car and truck exhaust systems, but there are also birds and
sometimes someone opens a door during a live take.
-- Tom Fine
----- Original Message -----
From: "Richard L. Hess" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Friday, March 21, 2014 5:03 PM
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Old Mercury recording venue gets a rebuild - Kingsway
> On 2014-03-21 11:51 AM, Tom Fine wrote:
>> Hi Mike:
>> Do you know if they ever tried hanging the mics from ropes in Kingsway?
>> Ropes were Mercury's tried and true method to keep floor rumble out of
>> the mics.
> Hi, Tom,
> Subways are a real pain. I did most of my New York City recording at St. Thomas Church 5th Avenue
> and 53rd Street. It made my commute real easy as I lived two blocks from the Kew Gardens station
> on the (then) E and F train which also stopped at Fifth Avenue on 53rd Street. The subway access
> was through 666 Fifth Avenue and the Donnell Library was on the south side.
> Anyway, we hung mics on small diameter cable and mono-filament fishing line. 100 feet of cable
> straight down (give or take a few feet).
> The problem was, you could hear the upper level trains especially in the church. The sound was
> just there. Not horribly loud, but there and noticeable.
> We never tried to filter it because it would have killed the pedal of the organ and it appeared
> broadband, though I have not analyzed it since I've bought iZotope RX3 Advanced which is a whole
> step up in cleaning.
> For produced recordings for LP (and after I left for Toronto, CD) release, the sessions would
> scrap takes with subway. It was most frustrating to have a good take ruined by a subway train.
> In fact, some of the recordings that were a capella were made first at the Church of St. Paul the
> Apostle on Columbus Avenue and W60th Street and then later the Church of St. Mary the Virgin, 145
> W 46th Street between 6th and 7th.
> Interestingly, I heard some recordings recently made by someone else from St. Paul the Apostle and
> there was a certain room tone to them that matched my St. Thomas Choir recordings. It wasn't
> necessarily completely pleasant, either.
> We recorded at St. Thomas whenever we used the organ, however.
> -- Richard L. Hess email: [log in to unmask] Aurora, Ontario, Canada
> 647 479 2800 http://www.richardhess.com/tape/contact.htm Quality tape transfers --
> even from hard-to-play tapes.