Thank you to the University of the East for enabling me to go to the Art of Record Production Conference in Oslo!
Oslo was a little foggy and the temperature was below zero a lot of the time but the atmosphere of the conference itself was warm and extremely friendly. It's a unique blend of people- not only from the academic community but also producers, engineers and artists, all approaching record production from different angles and genres.
One highlight was attending a presentation that included a Beyonce song as an example, and a member of the audience saying 'Well yes, I engineered that track and...'.
I also went to sessions on copyright (an oblique interest) and sound/genre (ditto) and wore out an entire pencil with scribbling notes and observations all the way through.
Although I didn't have a paper to present because much of the summer was spent in Edinburgh or travelling between Edinburgh and London, I wanted to go to hear what Susan Rogers had to say. Susan engineered a lot of Prince's material in the 1980s and she was really interesting. There were other people that I had some great conversations with (more to come on that later) and a lot of very interesting talk about the influence that, for instance, Mobile Phone playback is having on mixing.
Visiting a city for a conference is weird because you see lots of conference and not much city, although we did take a bit of time out to visit a Christmas market that sold things made of reindeer skin, manned by a genuine Lapp shopkeeper, and the lovely clapboard houses seen from the train out to the University of Oslo made me want to live there!
The Norwegians were great hosts which meant I didn't get a chance to run through my horrible vocabulary of Norwegian swear words, learned at Bellingham International Camp when I was 17. Never mind; that's not much to complain about.
The food was yummy too.