Graham Nash, winner of this year’s Surround Artist of the Year Award for his DVD-Audio release ‘Songs for Survivors’ came of musical age at a time when the revolutionary audio technology was two-channel stereo. Nevertheless, his transition to multi-channel music was a surprisingly smooth one, Nash told HFR’s Philip Brandes in a conversation before the Surround Music Awards ceremony.
“It was an easy decision,” Nash recalled. “[Mixing engineer and co-producer] Nathaniel Kunkel had done a 5.1 demo of ‘The Chelsea Hotel,’ and after hearing it in 360є I couldn’t go back to stereo.”
From the outset, the album was conceived and executed as a multi-channel project. “We recorded straight to ProTools – no analog at all. We created the multi-channel mix first… then we had to deal with stereo,” Nash said, comically rolling his eyes and shuddering at the memory of that old technology chore. Times have certainly changed.
Surround Artist of the Year Graham Nash (left) talks to High Fidelity Review’s Philip Brandes
Nash’s longtime musical collaborator, David Crosby, joined us to express similar enthusiastic support for the creative opportunities afforded by multi-channel production. Crosby is currently redoing his first solo album, ‘If I Could Only Remember My Name’ in multi-channel for release as a DVD-Audio title. Crosby also hinted that discussion was underway with former band mates Stephen Stills and Neil Young regarding DVD-Audio releases of the milestone ‘Crosby, Stills, and Nash’ and ‘Dйjа vu’. The hurdles are all legal and contractual, not technical, Crosby said. “We’ve got the original masters and they’re all in good shape.”
In the meantime, Crosby and Nash fans can enjoy the recent DVD-Audio release of ‘Another Stoney Evening’ their 1971 concert recording. Later that evening, Nash and Crosby teamed onstage to bring the Surround Music Awards audience to its feet with time-transcending renditions of their classic hits ‘Guinevere’ and ‘Teach Your Children’. For a few minutes, I was back at the Hollywood Bowl in 1969, watching them perform their first concert after Woodstock.