Mellencamp Remasters

Discussion in 'Music' started by ElevSkyMovie, Jul 27, 2006.

  1. ElevSkyMovie

    ElevSkyMovie Supporting Actor

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    I was curious if anyone else was picking up any of the Mellencamp remasters. I've picked up "Uh-huh" through "Big Daddy" the past 4 months from yourmusic.com. I think "Scarecrow" benefits most from the remaster, but they all sound really good to me. Great low end, and they don't seem over compressed.

    The back covers of the cds say that the albums are licensed to UMG from John Mellencamp. Does anyone know if Mellencamp owns or bought his masters? I think it's really great when an artist can get their masters back and can treat them with the respect they deserve.
     
  2. Ralph B

    Ralph B Supporting Actor

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    I think artists should leave mastering to the pros, thats my opinion.

    if you want a kick butt mastering of Uh-Huh, buy the original West Germany release from the 80's on Riva label with the lion logo on the disc. its the best you will hear of that recording.
     
  3. ElevSkyMovie

    ElevSkyMovie Supporting Actor

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    ok...

    I guess Bob Ludwig doesn't know anything about mastering.
     
  4. Ralph B

    Ralph B Supporting Actor

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    Bob Ludwig mastered the old West Germany version and I bet it beats his new remaster if he indeed do it(I have no idea, not into remasters) and thats what your saying.

    I highly doubt he out did himself from the original version. its known as the best version on cd, the old west germany version.

    from your post I was asssuming Mellencamp took a stab at the mastering and thats my comment. Ludwig isnt a major artist.... re-read my post.
     
  5. ElevSkyMovie

    ElevSkyMovie Supporting Actor

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    I take issue with the fact that you haven't even listened to the new remasters.

    Mellencamp didn't remaster them himself, Bob Ludwig did the entire catalog. Mellencamp appears to own his masters. Usually the label owns the masters and the artist has no control. I was trying to point out that I think it's a cool thing when artists own their own masters, because they have much more control in those cases. It's possible that since Mellencamp has his own studio and has recorded there since Scarecrow (Uh-huh was recorded in his sister's barn with a remote recording truck) he has owned his masters the entire time.
     
  6. Ralph B

    Ralph B Supporting Actor

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    I dont give remasters a chance cause more than not they stink. I would put money on it that it still wouldnt beat the West Germany version. not even the MFSL beats it.

    it doesnt even need a remaster anyway. the original release was perfectly done.
     
  7. Albert_M

    Albert_M Supporting Actor

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    I picked up The Lonesome Jubilee, Big Daddy and the underrated Whenever we Wanted. All sound great to me. And they are selling for a reasonable price too. I am thinking about picking up Uh-Huh.


    By the way, I highly recommend the Rough Harvest from the late 90s - it was also included in the remasters - it seemed to come and go, but it's one that I enjoy often and fits in with his late 80s recordings.
     
  8. Brian L

    Brian L Cinematographer

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    Just because Bob Ludwig mastered something does not mean it will sound good....you need to have good raw materials to work with. Case in point, the Mathew Sweet/Susanna Hoof's "Under the Covers" CD.

    Great music, but you can polish a turd all day long and its still a turd.

    FWIW, I have an un-remastered copy of "Big Daddy", and to my ears, it does not require a re-mastering, no matter who does it.

    To all those that stick to the mantra "Its all in the mastering", I would say that its all in the initial recording. Mastering can certainly screw it up, but if its crap to begin with, it will be crap when its mastered or remastered.

    Brian
     
  9. Ralph B

    Ralph B Supporting Actor

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    I figure Ludwig got it right the first time.... why remaster it ? the original sounds great.
     
  10. ElevSkyMovie

    ElevSkyMovie Supporting Actor

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    Uh-huh sounded ok. Scarecrow's initial pressing sounded thin and edgy. Jubilee and Big Daddy were borderline to me on needing remastering. I haven't picked up Whenever We Wanted, it sounds good to me already.

    I'm not on the remastering bandwagon. I buy remasters of older albums that don't sound that great. I have always loved Scarecrow, but wished it had more low end. If you don't want to purchase remastered albums, don't. I just wanted to talk to someone who might have purchased some of them to see what they thought. So far, that's been one person.
     
  11. Ralph B

    Ralph B Supporting Actor

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    I have to butt in and say all the bob ludwig original masters from the 80's (west germany) sound great, that includes Scarecrow and they all beat the MFSL versions. Scarecrow I agree doesnt have enough bottom end but its a nice clean xfer and sounds great.

    I do like to compare remasters but only to cd's I think are worth while. the John Cougar discs dont need remasters and anyone into high quality masters knows the early Mellencamp discs didnt need it. if you can find them. [​IMG]
     
  12. Jeff_A

    Jeff_A Screenwriter

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    I tend to agree with what you have stated. However, I wouldn't think there would be any difficulty at all in tracking down the earlier releases. They should be available everywhere (used record stores, pawn shops, eBay, etc.). Sorry, if you weren't implying rarity. [​IMG]
     
  13. Ralph B

    Ralph B Supporting Actor

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    they arent hard to find by any means but they arent readily available either. your not gonna walk right into a used bin and find it the first time. but you will eventually find it, it wont take long. or ebay, its easy to find on ebay.
     
  14. Albert_M

    Albert_M Supporting Actor

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    The new ones sound good, are reasonably priced and are at current volume levels. it is very frustrating to put together a disc.... but when you throw in tracks from discs made in the 80s... lookout... you'll get blasted once you get into something from the mid 90s on.
     
  15. Ralph B

    Ralph B Supporting Actor

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    current volume levels isnt a good thing, its called "Loudness Wars" do a search on it.

    audio compression isnt necessarily a good thing.
     
  16. Paul.S

    Paul.S Producer

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    I'm reminded of something Vincent says after walking in on his wife fixing an extramarital fling a meal in Heat. "Oh I'm angry . . . Ralph . . . SIT DOWN!!"

    [​IMG]


    Ludwig would be one of the first to say that newer tools/equipment enable him to get better results now via a judicious remastering of a well-done original recording from, say, 20 years ago.
     
  17. Ralph B

    Ralph B Supporting Actor

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    doesnt mean he is right either.
     
  18. Paul.S

    Paul.S Producer

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    Ralph:

    Forgive me if I place more stock in an engineer whose work I like and who has decades of experience over someone who, by his own statements, is "not into remasters." Why are you posting here then?

    I note that most of your posts are in the "Hardware For Sale/Trade" area of the Forum. Here in the Music area, I think regular posters are used to people who have first-hand experience to bring to bear on the topic at hand. Indeed, per his post #5, the guy who started the thread was looking for opinions from those who've purchased Mellencamp catalog title remasters. I, too, am interested in responses from members in that regard, especially because I own the MoFi Ultradiscs of Scarecrow and Big Daddy. You apparently haven't bought any.

    Setting aside your seeming confusion in your very first post herein over remasters versus master tapes, you've spent most of your time here basically being contrary. Just wanted to mention that it hasn't gone unnoticed that, IMO, you really haven't helped the thread starter gather information.
     
  19. ElevSkyMovie

    ElevSkyMovie Supporting Actor

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    I've found the new remasters to be a good balance between loudness and compression. I'm sure they are compressed a bit more, and they are all louder, but there is still a large dynamic range, case in point, the title track of "Big Daddy". When the verses end, loud guitars come up. There is a big difference in loudness between the verses and choruses.

    Since Mellencamp owns the masters, I would think he approved all of them. I can't imagine him allowing a loudness war to start.

    I also found Ludwig's remaster of Bon Jovi's "Slippery When Wet" to be very good as well. Now, if they'd just release the more like this as dual-discs with high res tracks, I'll be a happy man.
     
  20. Paul.S

    Paul.S Producer

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    Good to know, ElevSky.

    I'm not sure JCM owns his master recordings--that is very rare. Have you read that somewhere? The situation may have changed/he may have got a better deal when he got out of his contract and left Mercury for Sony (his lawyer Allen Grubman repped both John and the label), which also seems to be when his publishing shifted from Riva Music to Little B.

    Correction: I have the MoFi of Lonesome Jubliee--there's no Ultra of Big Daddy.
     

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