New York - Aug 19, 2009 - Back for his third turn as AES Convention Historical Committee chairman, Harry Hirsch has led the effort to arrange the historical events at the upcoming 127th AES Convention to be held the Javits Center in New York on Oct. 9-12. Here is an overview of the program.
The History of Live Sound: Presented by Toronto-based engineer Thomas Shevlin, this session will feature a panel of pioneers of live touring and Broadway sound. Opening with a slideshow reaching back before the 1920's origins of live sound systems, Shevlin and his panelists will discuss what originally drew them to the field, its progression during their careers, and their vision of the future.
Mercury Living Presence: Presented by recording engineer Tom Fine, this session will trace the technical history of one of the world's most highly regarded classical music labels. Recognized for a catalog of ground-breaking recordings from the '50s, '60s and '70s, the label began to flourish in the late 1940's just as the use of the single-mic technique was perfected. Engaging pristine audio samples, Fine will trace the label's progress from single-mic mono through the three spaced-omni stereo technique. He will also discuss the 35mm mag-film recording medium and detail the colorful 1990's CD reissue program.
The History of Bell Labs: Presenter Noah Simon (NYU Clive Davis Dept. of Recorded Music) will take attendees back to 1915 when nascent behemoth AT&T initiated trans-continental telephone service. This innovation spawned a research division that evolved into Bell Labs. The bustling scientific playground was responsible for a torrent of audio innovations including the condenser microphone, moving coil speakers and mics, and significant contributions to magnetic recording, sound for film, high-quality disc reproduction and stereo recording. The presentation will employ recordings, photos and other media to illustrate a vivid timeline of one of America's most innovative companies.
Recording the Jazz Big Bands: Robert Auld of Auld Works will trace the rise of the big bands in relation to the development of electrical audio recording. For 35 years, these mutually beneficial art forms produced superb recordings that exemplify the "golden age" of early stereo. A professional trumpet player and live sound engineer for the big band jazz concerts at the Manhattan School of Music, Auld has worked with artists ranging from Wynton Marsalis to the Vanguard Orchestra. In 1997 Auld published The Art of Recording the Big Band, a historical and critical survey based on his 25 years of experience on stage and on the console. He has now rethought and expanded this treatise into a full multi-media presentation covering the period from the 1920's to the present.
A History of the Significant Technical Contributions of RCA Corp: Moderated by Cliff Rogers with presenters Fred Barnham and Hans Dietza. From 1930 to 1985, RCA's Broadcast Division was one of its most innovative and profitable. This presentation will focus on such pivotal RCA Broadcast audio products as amplifiers, microphones, loudspeakers, theater systems and RCA photophone activities.
Harry Hirsch also served as the Historical Chairman for the 123rd AES Convention, and works closely with Irv Joel, Bill Wray and John Chester on the AES Oral History Project.