Welcome back to the blog, and seasonal greetings to you all! Christmas is just around the corner and this year we here at JZ wanted to share something special with you all; so in today's blog we’ve sat down with not just one incredible producer, but 3 top of their game Producers for a short Q&A to talk about what they like about the mics they have and use, and their thoughts on all things JZ orientated!
So grab a warm drink (perhaps a Mince Pie or a cookie), sit back, and enjoy the thoughts of Dave Eringa, Dana Neilsen, and Marc Urselli.
Let’s dive in!
Can you all introduce yourselves to the audience and share some of your success’, as well as you know how you came into contact with JZ?
(Marc) I'm a producer & engineer based in New York and London. I've been making records since the mid 90's. I opened my first recording studio in Italy when I was 17 years old and moved to New York when I was 21. I'm the chief engineer at EastSide Sound, the oldest and longest-running recording studio in NYC and I've been nominated for 7 Grammy Awards and won 3.I got 4-5 shows every night and I love music so much that after a long day in the studio I go to a concert and then I go home and listen to more music or mix something for somebody. True story. I love my job!
(Dave) Oh, right. So my name is Dave Eringa. I am a record producer that's been lucky enough to do it for 30 years. Sort of best known for working with bands, I guess, like Manic Street Preachers and The Who, Roger Daltrey and Idlewild and Proclaimers. And I came into JZ Mics orbit through Control Room, through Romesh Dodangoda, and he came across these microphones and so did my good friend Sean Genocky, and both of them were raving about this V67, and so I had to hear it!
(Dana) My name is Dana Nielsen, I’m a mixer, producer, engineer, multi-instrumentalist, and songwriter. I’ve been a big fan of JZ mics for a while now and I use the V67 and Blackhole mics. I’ve done work with some amazing artists; fortunately, there are so many fun records and amazing memories, like working with Bob Dylan on his Tempest album, and getting to know him a bit was incredible. I had been nominated for a Grammy for my work on the Rihanna album called Loud and my involvement in that was from a writer camp, which at the time, the public at large hadn’t heard of these camps, so that was awesome.
What applications do you find you use your JZ microphones most frequently on? Any Sources in particular?
(Marc) Particularly the Black Hole Series, I like it on vocals primarily but I have also used it on acoustic guitars, piano, and strings.
(Dave) The V67 has been on my Overheads for all of those records I mentioned. On the Jamie Webster record, which was a big hit, the real 67 just edged it on his vocal, but then the V67 was on his acoustic guitar and on the Overheads still! With James (Manic Street Preachers), we put up Rockfield’s 67 and the V67, and we both preferred the V67 by a margin on James's voice. I do think they are genuinely fantastic microphones. They just like I really do use them a lot. It's not there is no bullshit in that. I really like it on vocals; obviously, with any vocal mic, it has to be the right voice kind of thing, but it's always a winner on acoustic guitar. It's a really, really easy mic to record acoustic guitar, you know, just put in a pair of headphones and move it around in front of the guitar and find your spot and you're good to go. You know, you don't have to worry about coincident pairs or all the rest of it. You know, it's really fantastic - it’s got all the detail, but it's got all the body as well, you know?
(Dana) Going back to the V67, in particular, is especially reliable and referable, so I use it as a suggestion for people who are looking for a good all-purpose mic. It's full of range, plenty of range, plenty of sparkle. The capsule in itself and the electronics are such that the particular style works on pretty much anything, loud guitar cabs, gentle singing, as a drum overhead, it can capture pretty much anything. And because it's durable, and because it's more easily replaceable at its price point compared to other priceless mics that are at much more risk of damage, it gets used a lot, lot more.
Are the microphones irrespective of the series you have, a good fit for your studio and your workflow?
(Marc) Unless I am going for a specific sound or I am trying to create a mood or emulate a vibe, in the studio I usually go for transparency. I want my records to sound like the instruments you hear when you are standing in front of them. Therefore the Black Hole and its transparent and full-range capture give me exactly what I am seeking and what I am hearing. Every singer I have recorded on that mic (from Bono of U2 to a million others) sounds good and sounds like how they sound in real life!
(Dave) Yeah, they're very easy to set up in a stereo pair. They're very easy to get set up as overheads. They're very easy to just, you know, quickly whip off the overheads and shove on the acoustic front overdub, you know?
It's also an easy decision. It's one of those mics (V67) that you can rely on, you know exactly what you're going to get - You're going to get detail. You're going to get something that sits in the track. It sounds big, but not bloated, so it blends well. It's just it's a real no brainer. I mean, it was really shocking the first time I put it up. It was really, really, really good. Way better than it has any right to be for the money.
(Dana) after using them for several years, I know exactly what I’m going to get from them, they’re very reliable. And they’re out all the time, they aren’t packed away, I can keep doors and windows open with a salty breeze coming through, and I have zero issues, they’re really durable!
For what and why, would you recommend JZ microphone products? Or, perhaps a better question, what about the mics in particular shines for you the most?
(Marc) I would recommend JZ Microphones to anyone who wants to get a great-sounding condenser microphone. There are lots of great mics out there but JZ Mics sound consistently good and are affordable, especially if you wait for those sweet limited-time offers that JZ likes to come up with, more often and more consistently than most other companies out there!
(Dave) They really shine when they're capturing top end detail without harshness. That's what I would say for the V67 in particular which is why I gravitate towards them for those things. There’s just much definition, they take EQ really well, but they just don't need it.
(Dana) The JZ mics are awesome, the two I use the most are the Vintage series V67 and the Black Hole. Just from an aesthetic point of view, they’re very eye-catching which I think is really cool to have such an interesting design in a very cluttered market with so many high performing, affordable microphones, it’s a really great way to visually set yours apart at first glance. They’re also at a reasonable price point as well comparatively, and they sound great!
Out of the (product/series), what would you recommend new users to try first and why?
(Marc) I think the BB29 is a great entry-level mic if you want a very transparent condenser, and so is the Amethyst. The V67 is a great mic if you are looking for a vibe, and a more vintage sound! I also hear great things about the V12, but I have not had the chance to use that one yet!
(Dave) I mean, you know, with the range of mics that you guys do, I mean, you could easily record everything, I’d be quite happy to stand behind that! As it stands, I just have the V67’s and I use them primarily for capturing acoustic moments, so that's why, to go back to the drum kit, I use them constantly as the overheads; but they’d work just as well for room mics, without doubt as well as the other areas mentioned previously.
Side note from Harri: unfortunately, we didn’t have time to ask this question with Dana.
A special thank you to all the producers for taking the time to have this conversation with me, and also to Buffy Grace Orton for the amazing help on bringing this transcript to life.
To all of you reading, I hope you enjoyed this post and I will see you all next time shortly before Christmas!