To find out how well the EBS Stanley Clarke Signature Acoustic Preamp performs in real life we got the prominent bass player Rubem Farias and the awarded acoustic guitar player Steinar Aadnekvam together at the legendary Baggpipe studio in Stockholm. Then recorded a live performance with them using the Stanley Clarke Acoustic Preamp as the source for both the upright bass and acoustic guitar sound.
The recording process
To capture the sound, the players used one Stanley Clarke Acoustic Preamp each.
Both instruments had a built-in mic system that went into the A channel on their pedal. Then, a microphone was inserted via the XLR input on the B channel on each of the pedals. The mixing of the two sources and the sound settings were made with the onboard controls and filters of the pedals solely, feeding the studio soundboard with signals coming from the pedals’ balanced output. One for the bass, and one for the guitar. The channel equalizers on the soundboard were set flat with no additional sound processing added. Finally, a microphone in the middle of the room added some ambiance for a natural reverb effect.
Rubem Farias is a prominent bass player from Brazil, living in Stockholm. He has worked with many Brazilian top musicians as well as international stars. His most recent collaborations include Mike Stern, Randy Brecker, Balaio Quartet, Freedoms Trio, Rubem Farias Big Band, R. F. Quinteto, and others. Steinar Aadnekvam is an awarded acoustic jazz guitarist from Norway with several albums released as a solo artist as well as with the Freedoms Trio. They both recently recorded a new album together, and in the process, the name Freedoms Trio will change to Freedom Tree.
Fresh from working together on their coming up album, they played an original song by Rubem Farias called Caminho da Praia. The performance was recorded and filmed live in the studio with no sound editing added, other than adjusting the levels between the instruments. See the performance here:
The Baggpipe studios in Stockholm, where the recording happened, is one of the most legendary studios in Sweden. It has been around for 50 years under different names. Throughout history, a song by a Swedish artist has reached the #1 spot on the US Billboard charts 6 times. 5 of them were produced at this studio. The list of artists that have recorded there is almost endless and includes Swedish and international superstars like Roxette, Lady Gaga, ABBA, Wyclef Jean, RedOne, and others.
The impressions from the experience
We let the videos speak for themselves when it comes to sound and the performer’s impressions of working with the Stanley Clarke Signature Acoustic Preamp, but we can add that the staff at the studio were equally impressed with the sound quality and features of the pedal, and kept a unit to add to the arsenal of tools available at the studio.
Special thanks to Rubem Farias, Steinar Aadnekvam, Willem Bleeker (and the rest of the crew at Baggpipe Studios), and not least our film crew with video producer & photographer Peder Carlsson and Damón Zurawski (B camera operator).