Berklee College Of Music Expands Its Music Production Facilities With SSL Duality
Rising 16 stories above the hustle and bustle of Boston’s Back Bay neighborhood, Berklee College of Music has completed its first-ever built-from-the-ground-up residence, rehearsal, performance and educational tower. Dedicated to the art of contemporary music, live performance, music production and engineering in all its forms, the building features a two-story state-of-the-art 10-studio complex designed by Walters-Storyk Design Group (WSDG). Among the largest of its kind in the United States, the facility features scoring and dubbing stages, large tracking and mixing rooms and a mastering studio, along with production suites and a multi-seat tech lab. To ensure students are learning on the latest professional tools, the school installed its second new SSL Duality for tracking and mixing in Studio 3 (aka “The Bridge”), purpose-built for advanced students. Duality delivers the company’s signature sound through an analogue workflow, elegantly integrated with a sophisticated DAW controller, making it ideal for teaching students to work in a hybrid production world.
“Duality nicely bridges the gap between teaching on our traditional in-line analogue consoles, and our DAW controllers,” says Dan Thompson, Assistant Chair of Music Production and Engineering at Berklee College of Music. “The console is an extremely interesting teaching tool because it can act as an advanced analogue console alongside comprehensive control layer for DAW-based projects. In our advanced tracking and mixdown curricula, Duality perfectly illustrates this hybrid workflow and professional paradigm.”
Berklee College of Music has been on the forefront of innovation for more than 65 years, reflecting state-of-the-art of music and music business education, leading the way with the world’s first baccalaureate studies in jazz, rock, electric guitar, film scoring, songwriting, turntables, electronic production and more than a dozen other genres and fields of study. The school’s alumni have won more than 270 Grammy and Latin Grammy Awards (27 of which were won by alumnus Quincy Jones), along with numerous Emmy and Academy Awards. With this pedigree, the new studios need to represent the highest quality available for degree course work.
“We have had a great relationship with SSL over the past 20 years,” says Rob Jaczko, Chairman of Music Production and Engineering at Berklee. “Part of the mission here is to always train students on definitive professional equipment that they are going to encounter in commercial studios in New York, LA, London, Nashville and the world. Solid State Logic is obviously one of the principal platforms we need our students to train on, and Duality is the logical choice for our advanced studies.”
Berklee purchased its first Duality in 2010, primarily for teaching advanced mix techniques. With the expanded footprint of Berklee’s production facilities, both Duality consoles are now installed in tracking rooms (Studio B and The Bridge) and service advanced recording and mix classes and projects.
“Duality certainly represents multiple modalities and different ways to work,” continues Jaczko. “You’re not locked into a singular workflow in the room and, now that we’ve positioned both of the consoles in tracking spaces, we’re exploring the new variable harmonic front-end on the mic pres and using them in mix situations where they serve as controllers or as straightforward analogue consoles as we know them. The Duality consoles provide a lot of flexible options on how they get used, to the benefit of our students.”
“The Duality’s signal path and sound is pristine,” adds Thompson. “It offers clarity, separation, punch, extension and depth, whether used for tracking or mixing. Duality is a fine example of what happens when a quality company produces a quality product, and that is why we have two.”
Solid State Logic is the world’s leading manufacturer of analogue and digital audio consoles and provider of creative tools for music, broadcast, live and post production professionals. For more information about our award-winning products, please visit: www.solidstatelogic.com.