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Richard's liner notes for Carpenters with the Royal Philharmonic

Discussion in 'A Song For You: The Carpenters Forum' started by Tony, Dec 7, 2018.

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  1. Tony

    Tony Active Member Thread Starter

    Since Richard's note didn't come with the download, and I thought others might like to see it, I took the liberty of typing it up. (If there are any typos, they are mine, not his.) Here you go:

    There have been countless times over many years when, after hearing one of our records, I would imagine how nice it would be to have another crack at an arrangement, or to correct various and sundry other things. So, it was a most pleasant surprise when I was asked to do just that, in addition to conducting the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, as part of the creation of this album. Carpenters with the Royal Philharmonic is more than a new “hits” collection, albeit with a larger orchestra. Much more.

    To begin with, I selected songs that were not only well suited for Karen’s voice, but also our multi-tracked harmonies, a contributing factor to the overall “Carpenter Sound,” as it was soon to be labeled. Then it was on to revising my orchestral arrangements; applying the changes I’d been thinking of for years, such as the oboe line in the first chorus of “Ticket to Ride,” the bassoon in the interlude of “Superstar,” piccolo trumpet in “Goodbye to Love” and additional writing for the strings on virtually all the tracks.

    The latest technology was employed to make right a number of blemishes and oversights in the original recordings that have been haunting me for years. To wit, key instruments in several of the songs were slightly out of tune and were not noticed by us until the records were either mixed or released; more than a few of our earlier recordings came to a close at a faster tempo than they had begun, and minor clicks, squeaks and creaks ultimately found their way into a completed record, much to our chagrin. All have now been either expunged or corrected. Above all is the absence of the ambient noise, such as the A/C rumble, that made its way into Karen’s lead vocals, among other things. This room noise was a bugaboo in the finest of studios, and by and large didn’t seem that apparent until CDs came along. But now that it’s gone (along with CDs), it seems it was only too apparent, and that, along with dialing back the amount of reverb used in our later recordings and remixes, makes Karen’s leads sound cleaner, closer, warmer, and better than ever.

    Carpenters with the Royal Philharmonic turned out to be not only a monumental undertaking, but a labor of love, certainly for me, and I believe all who were instrumental in its making.

    [I did not include the various thank yous.]

    -Richard Carpenter
    October, 2018
  2. newvillefan

    newvillefan I Know My First Name Is Stephen

    I wonder if any of these tracks featured Karen on drums, since Richard has always said her timing was like a metronome and the drummer is the one who controls the tempo of a song.

    I think this correction is what makes tracks like I Just Fall In Love Again and Baby It's You sounds so phenomenal. You can now hear every nuance and vocal sound that comes from Karen's mouth when she sings.

    I agree 100% with Richard on this and I'm glad he saw sense and reversed the over-heavy reverb he employed on many of the remixes. Great job!
    ThaFunkyFakeTation, Tony and GaryAlan like this.
  3. CraigGA

    CraigGA Well-Known Member

    Thanks for taking the time to type them!
    Sue and Tony like this.
  4. Tony

    Tony Active Member Thread Starter

    Karen's drumming is credited on "This Masquerade". She is co-credited, along with Greg Bissonette, on "Yesterday Once More," "Ticket to Ride," and "Please Mr. Postman."
  5. newvillefan

    newvillefan I Know My First Name Is Stephen

    I meant was Karen drumming on any of the tracks where Richard felt the tempo changed during the song, as he didn't specify which ones he was referring to. But thanks for the info and also for the liner notes :righton:
  6. Tony

    Tony Active Member Thread Starter

    Oops. I misunderstood what you were asking :)
  7. Harry

    Harry Charter A&M Corner Member Moderator

    Please post this stuff in our official review thread.
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