James Lock remembered

UK: The legendary former Decca chief engineer passed away earlier this month, reports PSN-e. A renowned figure in the classical recording world, Lock worked with some of the world's most eminent conductors - including Sir Georg Solti and Herbert Von Karajan - during a career of more than five decades' duration.
Author:
Publish date:

UK: The legendary former Decca chief engineer passed away earlier this month, reports PSN-e. A renowned figure in the classical recording world, Lock worked with some of the world's most eminent conductors - including Sir Georg Solti and Herbert Von Karajan - during a career of more than five decades' duration.

After beginning his career as a trainee for the International Broadcasting Corporation in 1955, Lock joined the Decca engineering team of Kenneth Wilkinson and Gordon Parry. During the next four decades, he contributed to scores of legendary recordings, including the Herbert Von Karajan-conducted mid '70s performances of Puccini's La Boheme and Madama Butterfly.

An engineer who prioritised accuracy and acoustic fidelity, Lock won two Grammy Awards and is widely regarded to have achieved one of the first completely successful 5.1 classical music recordings with The Three Tenors Concert - Caracalla.

After leaving Decca in 1997, Lock embarked upon a second phase of his career, working as a sound consultant and adviser for venues including the new Concert Hall in Valencia, Severance Hall in Cleveland, and Victoria Hall in Geneva. More recently, an engagement with the Portuguese Gulbenkian Orchestra in 2005 led to discussions with Jo_o Ganho, a film sound designer and the owner of O Ganho do Som studio in Lisbon. Two years later, Lock joined the studio as resident engineer and consultant, working on movie soundtracks and 5.1 editions of classic late '70s recordings.

In his own fond look-back at Lock's distinguished career, Ganho remembered him as "the best classical music engineer of all time, but I will remember him as a very educated, nice and warm human being_ Recordings will never sound the same."

"One of Jimmy's finest legacies," adds Meyer Sound's John Pellowe, who worked with Lock for 22 years at Decca, "was that he built a bridge between engineering and artistry that forever banished the concept of engineers wearing brown coats and flat caps. Jimmy was loved by all the stars he worked with. His opinion of performances was frequently sought by artists and understandably so as he had an amazing knowledge of music that I and many other engineering staff envied. It was this knowledge that made his opinion really worth listening too.

"There are numerous things to remember Jimmy for outside of the music industry too, but I'll list just three: his extraordinary generosity, his insightful intelligence and, last but not least, the most wonderful, sharp-witted sense of humour one could ever have the pleasure to encounter."

Image credit: O Ganho do Som

Web » www.oganhodosom.com

Related

In memoriam: Atsunori Abe

JAPAN: The former general manager of Audio-Technica Corporation International Department (Japan) passed away on July 10, reports David Davies. In a career with the microphone giant that began in 1978 and ended with his retirement in 2005, Atsunori Abe (pronounced AH-bay) served in both his aforementioned role and on the board of directors.

In memoriam: Dennis Harburn

UK: The much-respected Shure Distribution executive passed away unexpectedly earlier this month, reports PSN-e. Shure Distribution closed for the day last Thursday (March 26) as a mark for respect for Harburn, who had been with the company for more than 36 years.

Remembering two EMI studio legends: Mike Batchelor and Norman 'Hurricane' Smith

PEOPLE: Former Abbey Road chief engineer Mike Batchelor has passed away at the age of 79. An EMI employee for nearly 40 years, Batchelor played a fundamental role in the development of numerous pieces of iconic EMI studio gear, including the ATOC Automatic Transient Overload Control and the TF12345 mixers. The news emerges shortly after that concerning the death of another distinguished EMI employee, engineer/producer Norman Smith, reports David Davies.

Nigel Luby remembered

The late recording engineer and studio tech worked with acts including Yes and The Alarm, writes David Davies. A mainstay of the studio world for more than three decades, Luby also developed an interest in installation sound design. He died of natural causes, aged 53, at his home on Eel Pie Island (pictured) in south-west London.

In memoriam: Jerry Wexler

US: Jerry Wexler, one of the most celebrated record producers of all time, has died aged 91, writes David Davies. A tireless advocate of soul and R&B, and an influential figure across more than five decades of popular music history, Wexler is perhaps most closely identified with his production of several classic Aretha Franklin long-players and his co-production of Dusty Springfield's Dusty In Memphis, but he also helped to shape enduring works by artists as disparate as Canned Heat, Professor Longhair, Bob Dylan and Dire Straits.

Bosch and NSCA honouring a pro-audio great

US: The two organisations have established an ongoing scholarship in memory of Monte Wise, reports David Davies. The new initiative by Bosch's Communication Systems Division and the NSCA Education Foundation acknowledges the contribution of Monte Wise, the former systems applications specialist, pro sound, at Bosch's Communications Systems Division, who passed away on September 30.

Les Paul to receive MPG Joe Meek award

UK: The late electric guitar and multi-tracking pioneer is to receive the MPG (UK) 2010 Joe Meek Award for Innovation in Production, writes PSN-e. An inventor and virtuoso guitarist who continued to perform live well into his '90s, Les Paul passed away in August at the age of 94.