This week, Skipper chats with Piper Payne, an audio mastering engineer.
Currently based in Nashville, Tennessee, Piper starts off the episode with her professional introduction and then tells us "who she actually" is, including her being originally a Midwesterner, having three dogs, being an Aries, and her love of cheeseburgers.
We talk about how if she wasn't a mastering engineer, she might be in some form of construction or maybe a carpenter. We get into how she's a drummer, starting when she was a "shrimpy kid", her technical music studies at the University of Michigan and then her graduate work in Norway, and working under Bob Katz and Michael Romanowski. Then, Piper dives into how she calibrates her mastering console with sine tones and noise, how music is mastered from a high level, her growing up on young country, her love of top 40 pop music, how vinyl records are made (think waffles), how musicians get paid (in the past and more recently), and the potential of non-fungible tokens to help artists get paid for their work as well as keep better track and make decisions about their efforts to tour, promote, and construct release plans.
We also talk about some of the assumptions that people have about being a mastering engineer, how it's not alchemy.
Below is a snapshot of the record shelves Piper mentions on the show as something she built recently that she's proud of:
Stay tuned after the outro music to hear Skipper work out the right way to introduce Piper as an audio mastering engineer or a mastering engineer.
- Frequency balance or equalization
- Stereo imaging or stereophonic sound
- "If you're into vinyl, there might be tough times ahead" from Global News
- "How a fire in the Inland Empire could spell doom for the worldwide vinyl LP boom" from The Los Angeles Times
- "'This Is Disastrous': How the Vinyl Industry Is Responding to the Apollo Masters Fire" from Rolling Stone
- "Out Of The Apollo Masters Fire Emerges The Vinyl Record Manufacturers Association Of North America" from Forbes
- "Respect" as written by Otis Redding, performed and made infamous by Aretha Franklin on her double vinyl album, "Aretha"
- Beyoncé’s "Lemonade" Vinyl Mispressed With Songs by Canadian Punk Band Zex
- "Inside the Dirty Business of Hit Songwriting" from Variety
- Apple Music tells artists it now pays double than Spotify per stream
- "What is an NFT, and How Could it Help the Music Industry? A Guide" from Mixmag
- "So You Want to Mint an NFT: A Guide for Artists & Music Execs" from Billboard
- Zoe Keating on "What Should I do about YouTube?"
- Zoë Keating's bio
- Infrasonic Sound
- Chef, Restaurateur Sean Brock at Husk
- Intro and outro song: "Zombie Nation" by Jose Travieso