P&E Wing Presents Master Recording Delivery Recs

Aug 1, 2002 12:00 PM, Grammy.com


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The Recording Academy's Producers & Engineers Wing presented on July 19, its Master Recording Delivery Recommendations during the National Association of Music Merchants Summer Session in Nashville.

The recommendations were created by members of the P&E Wing's Master Recording Delivery Recommendations Committee, which is comprised of producers, engineers, as well as record company executives, archivists and studio owners, among others, in conjunction with the Nashville Chapter of the Audio Engineering Society.

The intention of the 12-page Master Recording Delivery Recommendations document is to provide recommendations for secure backup, delivery and archive methodologies, both near-term and far.

"It was our objective to provide a common solution where previously there was none," said Leslie Lewis, director of the P&E Wing. "The Committee crafted a context for communication in order to prevent future loss. We want everyone to benefit from the shared experience and expertise of all of those in the recording community."

Committee co-chair George Massenburg stated, "We feel that the P&E Wing and the members of the Master Recording Delivery Recommendations Committee––comprised of different, and sometimes contentious and opposing forces––has been the best forum to address these critical issues and, subsequently, to reach a solid consensus."

"Cyril Connely, a former literary critic at the London Times once said, 'Art is man's attempt to preserve imagination from time,' and I can't think of a better reason for us to engage in this extraordinary and complex issue," said committee co-chair Kyle Lehning, a producer and engineer. "Ensuring the proper preservation of the art created in today's music recording technology is not only a practical concern, but a moral obligation. We believe that the Master Recording Delivery Recommendations are a positive step toward preserving the foundation of the creative process, and it is in the interest of all parties involved to endeavor and make them as accessible as possible for as long into the future as possible."

The Master Recording Delivery Recommendations document itself is broken down into three specific parts: the recorded delivery specification, the media identification label and the recording map. The primary purpose of the recorded delivery specification is to ensure that a digital recording can be completely and reliably recovered, both in the short-term and in the long-term if the technology used during the initial recording sessions becomes unavailable. The media ID label provides a form of identification for each and every element that is being delivered. Finally, the recording Mmap is provided—with the recommendation that it be maintained throughout the project—to accompany the physical deliverables in order to catalog and track the information contained in each file.

Because the recommendations were established by experts on both sides of the issue, it is the P&E Wing's hope that in addition to garnering a favorable response from individual artists, producers and engineers who will begin incorporating the procedures into their daily routine, the record companies will adopt the recommendations and implement them as their standard for master delivery.

In order to create this document, the Master Recording Delivery Recommendations Committee has met at the Recording Academy's Nashville Chapter as often as every other week since September of 2001. Upon completion, the Master Recording Delivery Recommendations were reviewed by the P&E Wing Advisory Council and members of the P&E Wing, with a request for frequent feedback as to its relevance. In the future, the Committee will review the Recommendations semi-annually to incorporate the feedback received from members of the recording community and record company executives, and to ensure its continued relevance within commonly accepted industry standards.

The Committee is co-chaired by Lehning and Massenburg. Committee members include Chuck Ainley, Jeff Balding, Steve Bisher, Alison Booth, Tony Brown, Barry Cardinael, Eric Conn, Sharon Corbitt, Tom Endres, Garth Fundis, Scott Hendricks, Steve Marcantonio, Pat McMakin, Betsy Morley, Jake Nicely, Gary Paczosa, Mike Purcell, Traci Samczyk, Kay Smith, John Spencer and Bil VornDick.

To read the P&E Wing's Master Recording Delivery Recommendations, visit www.grammy.com/recommendations.pdf. A copy of the document is also available on Massenburg's professional Website at www.GeorgeMassenberg.com.

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