Tubatastic Christmas

We have been working on a Christmas project. It should have been finished in July in order to do it right. We have less than a week until the deadline for a Christmas release to happen and we are still proceeding as if it is even possible. The worst case scenario is that we don’t make the deadline and have to sit on it till next Christmas. No big deal.

The most recent hurdle has been the tuba. The most important part of “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day” is the tuba. The song needs a tuba. I found a tuba player. One of my oldest musician friends has a son who plays the tuba. This kid used to run around the studio in his diaper back when we were reinventing country rock and drinking lots of beer. Now, he is a teenager and we ate donuts. He did an amazing job and it sounds exactly how I hear it in my head. I was very happy and still completely convinced that this project could happen on time.

The mix sounds great in my studio headphones and on decent speakers. The problem is that a large percentage of people listen to music with their phones or other limited devices. The issue is that most mobile devices don’t play sounds below around 500 Hz. The best part of the tuba happens below that 500 Hz threshold. I am continuously beefing up the mid range to make the tuba more apparent but I don’t want it to stop sounding like a tuba. If I don’t push the low mid range, the tuba disappears. I didn’t know it was possible for a tuba to disappear.

I think I have found a happy medium. I guess life is all about bringing the extremes toward the middle. Today is Election Day, don’t forget to vote. This might not be the best approach for the tuba but it’s all I’ve got. Please promise me one thing. Promise you will listen to this on good speakers. You owe the tuba that much.

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