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Carpenters Stereo, Mono & CSG

Discussion in 'A Song For You: The Carpenters Forum' started by Rick-An Ordinary Fool, Jul 14, 2017.

  1. Jeff

    Jeff Well-Known Member

    Quadraphonic The Singles 69-73. Just spun the single quad version of Close to You and loved a different mix to start my day.
  2. Brian

    Brian Well-Known Member

    I agree. It also brings to mind that a lot of education systems around the world, (maybe all education systems), don't allow people the opportunity to shine and demonstrate their ability and potential. I recall that a teacher of Karen and Richard called them 'average students' in print or in a live interview, yet Richard in particular, (probably Karen, too, with her drumming), has demonstrated that he has strong intelligence of a certain type. He also sounds to me in interviews as if he's intelligent, generally. I believe the education system in the US, like a lot of places, was quite test-driven in the past, (and maybe still is). That means lots of chalk and talk, being put to sleep by the teacher, lots of thought control and action control, regurgitating of facts and cramming. Memorising facts and regurgitating them in tests actually exercises one of the lower forms of intelligence. That is, you don't have to be particularly bright to succeed. You just need to be a particular type of thinker, (or non-thinker), prepared to be told what to think and what to do, to be a good listener and be prepared to put time in memorising things. Assessments of whether a person is intelligent or not, particularly back then, would largely depend on the intelligence of the person making the judgement and their ability to perceive the talents of the person they were looking at. Thank goodness Karen and Richard later hit a music department that obviously enthused them and gave them the opportunity to demonstrate what they were capable of and to be creative. We probably have a lot to be thankful for towards Frank Pooler and the other people in the Downey music department in the 60s. I apologise for seeming completely off topic for this thread. However, being aware of Richard clearly demonstrating his intelligence in a number of ways, as in this article and with these areas of his work, and remembering him being described as an average student, therefore, nothing 'out of the box', brought all this to mind.
  3. HenryG

    HenryG New Member

    Can someone point me towards a list of all the Carpenters songs that have dedicated mono mixes (not fold-downs)? I'm also interested in which of those dedicated mixes have appeared on CD releases?
  4. Interesting article. I think things like this go back quite a way with other artists who have had stereo mixes put down into mono for single release. Just listen to the punch on The Beatles "Paperback Writer" and compare it to the stereo mix. George Martin and EMI knew they had to increase the output slightly for AM radio for a better listening experience. Mind you, here in the U.K., we were a bit more behind on the acceptance of stereo especially for singles.
    I think Richard should do a special anniversary album of the mono mixes they did for singles, although maybe there aren’t enough for a full album.
  5. Rick-An Ordinary Fool

    Rick-An Ordinary Fool Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    There are 30 Carpenters mono singles and that's enough for a fantastic mono 45 box set. These were all US mono 45's, however Calling Occupants was not released as a mono in the US that I am aware of...someone on here says they have a mono 45 of Calling but it was a Canadian pressing. The poster provided a picture of the label but I've never seen one otherwise.
    Let's hope Richard tackles this project one day, the set could be a box including the stereo and mono versions together across several discs.
  6. Rick-An Ordinary Fool

    Rick-An Ordinary Fool Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Here is the list of Mono 45's

    Santa Claus Is Coming To Town
    Your Wonderful Parade
    Beechwood 45789
    (Want You) Back In My Life Again
    I Believe You
    Bless the Beasts
    Those Good Old Dreams
    Ticket to Ride
    Sweet Sweet Smile
    All You Get FLIALS
    Calling Occupants
    Touch MWWD
    It's Going TTST
    There's a KOH
    I Won't LADWY
    Goodbye TL
    Only Yesterday
    For All WK
    Hurting EO
    Rainy Days
    Yesterday OM
    We've OJB
    Please Mr P
    (They Long to Be) CTY
    Top OTW
  7. theninjarabbit

    theninjarabbit Well-Known Member

    Wow, I didn't realize so many of the singles had dedicated mono mixes. I'm assuming that the mono 45s were only available as promotional, radio-station copies?
    CraigGA likes this.
  8. Rick-An Ordinary Fool

    Rick-An Ordinary Fool Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    I wished they had done a mono for Merry Christmas Darling and Ave Maria. It's also pretty rare that an artist by the 80's would still be issuing mono 45's. We have quite a few from the MIA album.
  9. HenryG

    HenryG New Member

    I’m also surprised there are so many dedicated mono mixes. I notice “Maybe It’s You” isn’t on the list. So the mono mix on the promo single is a fold-down?
  10. tomswift2002

    tomswift2002 Well-Known Member

    The mono mixes would usually take the place of the B-side song, so that radio stations could have their pick, depending on if they were broadcasting on AM (which would be mono) or FM (which could handle both stereo and mono broadcasts).

    Really TTR & YWP was the only true mono single release.

    Also the mono version of SCICTT appeared on the Perry Como Christmas DVD in 2013 as the special was originally mixed in mono, so the mono mix was used. The 2016 Christmas Memories DVD has the 1984 Stereo remix.
  11. newvillefan

    newvillefan I Know My First Name Is Stephen

    In fact, all of the MIA singles are on that list. I’m quite surprised any of them were released in mono.
  12. HenryG

    HenryG New Member

    Do you mean ALL the other mono versions are fold-downs? I thought Richard talked about making dedicated mono mixes of several singles? Is that not right?
  13. Harry

    Harry Charter A&M Corner Member Moderator

    I believe he meant that those were the only ones issued to the public at large.

    Promo mono tracks exist for just about every single. Some may be fold-downs or cleverly mixed dedicated mono mixes. Richard and his engineers did top-notch work to ensure that the tracks sounded good on AM radio.

    Listen to this mono mix of "Superstar". You can hear the extra reverb and the compression of the mix.
    Chris Mills, AM Matt and HenryG like this.
  14. Harry

    Harry Charter A&M Corner Member Moderator

    Listen to this mono version of "Hurting Each Other" to hear the slight reverb and compression applied:

    AM Matt and HenryG like this.
  15. HenryG

    HenryG New Member

    Very cool--thanks for posting these!
  16. theninjarabbit

    theninjarabbit Well-Known Member

    These would make a very cool set, indeed...
  17. Rick-An Ordinary Fool

    Rick-An Ordinary Fool Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    I agree and with this recent article uncovered....Richard was very candid about their process in creating mono versions of the singles and why we have them. This would be right up his alley in releasing a set like this on CD and providing liner notes for each mono single. Now wouldn't it be cool if this is already in the pipeline for an upcoming release and we don't even know about it? We didn't even know that Public TV was going to release The Complete Singles Collection, did we?

    This article is really worth a 2nd read especially after hearing all these mono mixes. It also clears up why the CSG processing appears on some of the singles.
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2018
  18. theninjarabbit

    theninjarabbit Well-Known Member

    Unfortunately "Rainy Days and Mondays" isn't one of the few "mono 45" videos I found. I would love to hear what that sounds like.
  19. Rick-An Ordinary Fool

    Rick-An Ordinary Fool Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Harry, if we listen to a CSG 45 like say MCD with headphones we know it will sound weird and out of phase. Is it possible for an amateur like me to import that 45 with the CSG processing say using Audacity and import it into a single channel and then after coded listen back to this single channel with headphones and hear something very different?
  20. Harry

    Harry Charter A&M Corner Member Moderator

    Theoretically if you collapse a CSG track to mono, it will sound the way it would have on a mono radio station.

    In Audacity, import the CSG track in its stereo state, select Tracks>Stereo To Mono and that's what you would have heard on a mono station. Now, AM radio stations would also have some compression that they added along with some high frequency roll-off.
  21. Rick-An Ordinary Fool

    Rick-An Ordinary Fool Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    I'm going to try that this weekend with a couple of those CSG 45's..will be interesting to hear this.
  22. Rick-An Ordinary Fool

    Rick-An Ordinary Fool Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Isn't there also an option in audacity to add some slight compression? It's called Compressor but it processes as adding Dynamic Compression. I've never tried it but I guess I play around with it and see if I can get more of that AM sound on the CSG fold down.
  23. Wasn't the guy that invented CSG (Holzer-something?): the one, whom, personally *installed* it at A&M as well...when the Chaplin studios were completed in 1968 and they got 8-track Scully recorders?

    It affects the right channel signal more than the left. The bass (particularly) has an inverted "bloat" to it and you get a "blurred" soundstage from how it feels there's not just a normal, distinctly centered soloist...but *other* instruments now sound split across two speakers; with the equalization all screwy in the right.
  24. Harry

    Harry Charter A&M Corner Member Moderator

    ^One of the better descriptions I've read.

    Also, with good headphones it feels like your brain is being sucked out.
    S.J. Hoover likes this.
  25. Thank you, Harry.
    Warner/Atlantic/Elektra used it on their discs during that same period ('68-'71?) --- so, A&M weren't the only "guilty" label. However, say, UNlike W-E-A tape product: A&M must've used the same CSG-encoded, stereo master across the board to produce ALL release formats. The Warner Brothers Association albums (after "Insight Out"), for example, I've got the tape counterparts to don't have it and are in the "normal" wide stereo of the era; yet, the records have the CSG. For the A&M stuff I can speak to: the vinyl and tapes of Fool On the Hill, Warm, and Butch Cassidy all sound identical (which, back then, when there were dedicated processes -usually- reserved for each pre recorded format...wasn't always the end result).

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