Thursday, October 4, 2012

mono!

what it is: mono!
where i found it: not in an old truck in texas

I used to live in Texas and drive an old pickup truck with one working stereo speaker. One day I discovered the preposterous stereo splitting on old Beatles records when I popped in Sgt. Pepper and only heard a snare drum and some ghostly reverb of Paul's voice in the distance, which was actually good and became my preferred Beatles listening method for a while. Now that I'm a grown up record dork I decided to buy a few of the mono mix albums and guess what? They're much better (at least up through the White Album). Come to find out (in talking to some other grown up record dorks) that the Beatles had little to do with the stereo mixes in the first place and that the tracks were arbitrarily split and hard panned to please people who were spending a bunch of money on brand new "hi-fi" stereo systems at the time (which looked like pieces of furniture and were advertised in hi end lifestyle magazines like Playboy to guys who smoked pipes, see below). Back to mono!