Randy Coppinger

AES Convention Memory

The current President of the Audio Engineering Society, Alex U. Case, has invited members to share their memories of conventions past. Here’s one of my favorites. 

Graham Blyth performed pipe organ in one of the big cathedrals in San Fransisco, as he has for so many years as part of AES Conventions. Ron Stretcher held a class before the concert on techniques for recording that pipe organ, including a Decca Tree. He asked those of us attending if anyone knew how to assemble his AEA Decca Tree. I had just purchased one and assembled it a few times, so I raised my hand. And I was the only person who raised a hand.

So there I was assembling Ron’s microphone positioner in front of the entire class, and though I might have been nervous about it, instead had fun putting it together. After everything was setup and ready, our class was invited to sit in the choir seats right underneath the front organ registers. As if that listening perspective of the glorious music wasn’t enough, I was just a few seats away from audio luminaries Wes Dooley and Rupert Neve. I thought to myself: THIS is why I am a member of the AES.

Here’s a pic of my Decca Tree
for a different recording situation.