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Analyzing Carpenters Recordings

Discussion in 'A Song For You: The Carpenters Forum' started by CARPENTERS-COLLECTOR, May 2, 2018.


    CARPENTERS-COLLECTOR Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    `I placed both the COMPLETE SINGLE COLLECTION version and the JAPAN SINGLE BOX version of "Calling Occupants Of Interplanetary Craft" into Audacity and lined them up, peak for peak down to the individual sample level. Then I inverted one of the recording's phase so that ups were downs and vice versa. Theoretically, this should have the effect of sound cancellation when played simultaneously.`

    I hate to be blunt here, but when I read this stuff, I have to say I find it rather sad!
    I`m amazed you guys ever get to actually enjoy this music, rather than pick it apart `note by note` for scrutiny.
    personally, I couldn't give a stuff for any differences in the tracks on any of the albums, I`d rather just sit and LISTEN to the music .........
    Geographer likes this.
  2. Harry

    Harry Charter A&M Corner Member Moderator

    Will you please allow us to have our hobbies and preferences? You need not be sad for me, I enjoy a great life in beautiful Florida and do the things I WANT to do. If I choose to analyze wave files, well that's because I want to do it. And my posting of that information here is for those who are also interested in my findings. If it bothers you - don't read it. But please, don't be sad.

    {Is there a full moon or something out there?...}

    CARPENTERS-COLLECTOR Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    a hobby is fishing, painting or building something, checking two pieces of music to see if one wave is the same as another ............ well :)
    hey, whatever floats your rocks harry, you go for it, like I said, I`d rather just LISTEN TO IT :)
    o, and no full moon .......... I have no excuse now!
  4. Mike Blakesley

    Mike Blakesley Well-Known Member Moderator

    How much I "pick apart" a song I'm hearing depends on a lot of things... the mood I'm in, where I am, etc. Every now and then I'll listen to a whole song and just get fixated on the drums, or the bass, or whatever and then decide to go back and listen to it again so I can hear the "whole" song.

    Everybody has different interests. My particular thing is, I really like making CD compilations of my favorite artists. I've been known to spend many hours getting a segue, or an edit of a song, or a series of songs, to sound "just right." Everything matters, right down to the length of time between the songs. I could write many paragraphs about painstaking stuff that I've done, but it would bore you completely to tears. My favorite Carpenters project (so far) was an edit of the Now and Then oldies medley. I'm currently working on a much-shorter version of Sergio Mendes' epic tune, "The Circle Game."
    GaryAlan and Jamesj75 like this.
  5. GaryAlan

    GaryAlan Well-Known Member

    This is fascinating, and, once again "we" learn that different Carpenters fans
    have different viewpoints. We are not carbon-copies (dating myself) of each other.
    And, that is good.

    I, for one, like to "analyze" arrangements (or--if you will--re/analyze).
    I "mentally" re-arrange songs (e.g., what if the harp were placed here instead of there ?).
    An example--Because We Are In Love.
    Many fans do not care for the song. There was a time when I was one of those fans.
    Now, when I "listen" to the song, I "mentally" delete the choir, add a bit of drumming,
    shorten the long-winded intro and outro--and, wow---what a song, what a vocal performance !

    "Analyzing" the song did not detract from my enjoyment.
    After listening to that one song since 1981 (that's 37 years of listening)
    I really got a kick out of it.

    37 years is a bit of time, so, who cares if I analyze it ?

    But, I still enjoy listening to these Carpenters' songs after all of these
    years of listening (since 1973, for me).

    Carpenters' music has (literally) saved my life (more than once).
    The question, then, remains:
    Why wouldn't I "analyze" it ?
    Jeff likes this.
  6. Chris May

    Chris May Resident 'Carpenterologist' Moderator

    Oh boy...so glad I don't fit into that category - as I would never even DREAM of picking a Carpenters record apart! :whistle:
    David A likes this.
  7. arthowson

    arthowson Active Member

    id like to hear the edit
  8. arthowson

    arthowson Active Member

    I don't mind picking apart. I prefer the clicks and pops in Karen's voice and don't love the recordings where it's edited out. As Richard and the fans age, I hope that new ones will come along and pester Colin for more recordings or a remix or something. I'd hate to think of a day where I couldn't hope for some lost recording or video performance.

    CARPENTERS-COLLECTOR Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    just so everyone knows, I`m not the one who started this thread :)
    you make a simple comment/opinion, your entitled to make and someone takes it to heart ..... dear me. surprised it wasn't locked or something!
    mind you, `SOUTHERN COMMAND` is involved ......... be careful. must be something to do with the pentagon :)
  10. Harry

    Harry Charter A&M Corner Member Moderator

    I split this discussion out into its own thread, and as you were the one to bring it up, you get to be the thread starter. It didn't belong in the COMPLETE SINGLES thread as it has very little to do with that subject at all.

    You said you "hate to be blunt" - and a good rule of thumb is that if you're going to be blunt, someone somewhere isn't going to like it. Meanwhile, I never bought your premise that analyzing music precludes enjoying music.

    Also, remember that things that you write on the Internet do not express what you're feeling when you wrote it. Smileys can help sometimes, but even they don't totally give others a feel for your intentions.
  11. motownboy

    motownboy Active Member

    This is a forum for us to (hopefully) freely express our views on music and those involved in creating it. Karen and Richard's music has touched our lives in an important enough way that we choose to be here.

    Everyone has the choice to enjoy the Carpenters music whether it be analyzing and picking apart a song or just putting on an LP or CD and letting it play. Do it the way you want, but it helps to keep in mind that everyone is different.
    CraigGA likes this.
  12. ThaFunkyFakeTation

    ThaFunkyFakeTation Ah am so steel een luv weeth yoo

    "I hate to be blunt"...but I'm going to do it anyway. LOL! As someone who does stuff like this, perhaps I can be of some assistance as to why we do it.

    You're under the impression that those of us who do it aren't enjoying the music...and that couldn't be further from the truth. In fact, I opine that we're actually enjoying it more - perhaps significantly more - than you are. We're enjoying what we hear and we also enjoy the dissection. Said dissection isn't taking us away from the music; it's adding to it.

    If there were no one existence who did this, there would be no musicians or engineers to create the music that you choose to simply sit down and "enjoy".

    jaredjohnfisher likes this.
  13. Rick-An Ordinary Fool

    Rick-An Ordinary Fool Honolulu City Lights

    I agree that for me analyzing the music allows me to get closer to the recordings, in a strange way it's almost like being apart of the process back in the 70's. It's also allowed for us to uncover at times some cool stuff or things we may have overlooked before but now have become clear. For instance, a while back we were discussing "B'wana She No Home" and it made me get out my LP of Passage that I'd not done for a while and review that song. When I heard it...my analytical skills set off blinking red lights in my head and I said something sounds different to me.

    I really think this was what started me to get back into my LP's....funny how that one thing could lead to dusting off all my old records and needle dropping all my original LP's to save audio files for preservation and listening enjoyment. I just finished MIA this past weekend I'm realizing for the first time how pushed back Karen's lead vocals really are on this album. What a far cry from earlier songs like One More Time, Solitaire, Eve, Rainy Days and I Can't Make Music...where Karen is up front and takes center stage. I've already needle dropped my original Lovelines at the same time I got the 2017 Lovelines LP so at this point I've only got VOTH. I sorta did everything in chronological order with also needle dropping the live albums and both Christmas LP's. All of this has been a journey for me and has brought me closer to the music.

    (slightly off topic)
    Since I've been in vinyl mode lately and with the recent 40th Grease movie in theaters I have realized I never needle dropped my original 78' Grease album. I have the original CD but I'm really looking forward to cleaning that 2 LP set and hearing what I might discover. This is fun stuff!!
  14. Harry

    Harry Charter A&M Corner Member Moderator

    Absolutely. Some of the treasures on my long-held vinyl often reveal surprises that I either never knew, or had forgotten. I still love CDs and all that they can do for me, but there are just some things locked away in vinyl grooves waiting to be discovered.
    Jeff, Chris May and jaredjohnfisher like this.
  15. Jarred

    Jarred Active Member

    Harry knows how to throw some shade.
  16. Chris May

    Chris May Resident 'Carpenterologist' Moderator

    Guys all we’re trying to say here is that analyzing or picking apart an artist’s work is how many of us find our own expression of passion for the work itself. Whereas it may come off as a “negative” perhaps to someone looking in, the reality is - and to echo the sentiments of @ThaFunkyFakeTation, for many of us the passion goes beyond simply listening to the song and appreciating it on the surface.

    I know for me personally, part of what got me into the whole thing from a kid (apart for my own musical talents and aspirations) were the curiosities that were triggered when I would hear this stuff for the first time. Just listening to it and walking away didn’t satisfy the itch. I had to know the what and why and how of the whole thing.

    Anyhoo, were a passionate bunch here for sure and all @Harry is trying to say is that we can each express that passion in our own way, so let’s relax and get back to why we all come here in the first place.
    John Tkacik, Geographer, Jeff and 2 others like this.
  17. Mike Blakesley

    Mike Blakesley Well-Known Member Moderator

    The whole notion of liking to hear the details of a song is probably the main reason I like to play my music nice and loud. It's not any big rock'n'roll thing -- I even crank up Burt Bacharach -- it's because I like to hear the nuances.

    I think that is one of the differences between today's generations and previous ones. In my parents' youth, recorded music was mostly meant for background listening -- because the sound quality was crappy and didn't reveal the details anyway! This led to a lot of "turn that down!" when rock started to enter the picture. But now that most listeners have at least a passably good way of listening, be it on headphones, a big home system or a good car system, we're able to dig deeper in the music and enjoy those details of the music that our parents msnever dreamed were even there.
    Jeff and Bobberman like this.
  18. Bobberman

    Bobberman Well-Known Member

    I agree Even as a younger person I would crank up even instrumental music because I would hear those nuances and details in the music and various passages and it's true there are things in there that our parents and perhaps siblings were seemingly oblivious to
  19. As a casual observer of this/these thread(s), I can see both sides. I am not skilled nearly enough to understand every "nit-pic," nuance, and analytical point that is being heard or expressed (I still don't know what "reverb" is or can hear a difference in a song with our without it), BUT I do find it fascinating to read about. On the other hand, all the analytical "talk" DOES come across as critical and seems...from just reading the comments... that the music is not enjoyed. Logically, my "head" tells me that, of course, the music is enjoyed, or it wouldn't be discussed at such a technical level. But it seems that the technical conversations are framed in a "this is what's wrong with the recording" more often than "this technical thing is what makes this song great." That, I think, is what may give some the impression the music is not being enjoyed. But logic and reason would reveal otherwise.
    Nick and Jamesj75 like this.
  20. Rick-An Ordinary Fool

    Rick-An Ordinary Fool Honolulu City Lights

    Also lets not forget that when someone comes on the forum to ask a simple question like why do I hear oboe or strings or an organ on this cd but not on this cd collection or on the 45 or LP? To me this falls into a category of analyzing. For me this causes no harm in one enjoying the music and gives the listener more info.
    Eyewire and ThaFunkyFakeTation like this.
  21. Harry

    Harry Charter A&M Corner Member Moderator

    Geez, I'm beginning to think that the Carpenters Recording Resource is more a source of irritation than of enjoyment!

    If anyone thinks that a project like that can be done without analyzing recordings, then they've got another think coming.
  22. Song4uman

    Song4uman Well-Known Member

    I love the analysis. I don’t always have the time to listen and compare. I love reading what others have discovered and then go back and listen for myself. I am VERY appreciative of the work done on the Carpenters Resource!!!!!!!!
  23. CraigGA

    CraigGA Well-Known Member

    The Carpenters Resource is one of the greatest gifts a Carpenters fan can read, study, and find interesting facts, see promotional items through the years and have an accurate account of history, along with a cross section of time comparrative! I can’t image this treasure grove to have any better information. Then add facts that cover the message boards with you and Chris May in the forums it can’t be any more complete. I refer to the information constantly and I lived through the seventies when it all happened!!
    Jeff S, Nick, Eyewire and 4 others like this.
  24. John Tkacik

    John Tkacik Active Member

    What he said.
    Nick likes this.
  25. I myself am a very detailed person; in every aspect of my life. I simply can’t help being that way. I know the Carpenters, especially Richard, were extremely detailed in their work. Naturally, their music attracted many detailed listeners.
    It’s all in the details, baby!! LOL
    Bobberman and Jamesj75 like this.

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