Recording Academy P&E Wing Spring Recap

As the music industry adapts to the circumstances brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Recording Academy® Producers & Engineers Wing® continues to be the organized voice for the creative and technical recording community, addressing issues salient to the quarantine era and beyond. In recent weeks, this has taken the form of webinars, panels, and guidelines documents addressing the health crisis — a spring itinerary that kept efforts moving on the P&E Wing's central mission despite the era of social distancing.

Highlights over the past few months include the following:

NOLA MusicTech Conference Online on April 29:
The first-ever NOLA MusicTech Conference made a quick turnaround and became one of the first events to switch from in-person to online. Originally presented for many years in San Francisco as SF MusicTech, the conference reprised its informal and informative style as a day full of relevant speakers, sessions, sponsors, attendees, and plenty of New Orleans flair as was originally intended. As part of the event's talent roster, P&E Wing Senior Managing Director Maureen Droney and DDEX Secretariat Mark Isherwood discussed the latest in progress with recording metadata and the RIN (Recording Information Notification) standard. The Recording Academy Memphis Chapter Senior Membership and Project Manager Reid Wick spoke on MusiCares®, which is remembered in New Orleans for its work post-Hurricane Katrina, and attorney Ken Abdo discussed the Academy's Entertainment Law Initiative®. Check out the session here.

"Keeping The Music Playing!" on May 8:
The P&E Wing hosted a special Zoom Webinar titled "Keeping The Music Playing!" The all-star conversation featured top engineers and GRAMMY® winners Serban Ghenea (The Weeknd, Ariana Grande, Pink, Bruno Mars), Gimel "Young Guru" Keaton (Jay-Z, Notorious B.I.G., Beyoncé, Rihanna), Manny Marroquin (Bruno Mars, Rolling Stones, Lizzo, Lady Gaga), and Ann Mincieli (Alicia Keys, Jay-Z, Drake, Mariah Carey, Usher), and was moderated by GRAMMY-nominated producer/songwriter/engineer Ivan Barias (Jill Scott, Musiq Soulchild, Justin Timberlake). Barias is a Recording Academy Trustee, and both Barias and Mincieli are co-chairs of the P&E Wing Steering Committee. Due to overwhelming response, "Keeping The Music Playing!," which was first broadcast to P&E Wing members on Zoom and was so engaging it ran more than double its originally scheduled length, is now posted on the Recording Academy Facebook page.

Droney welcomed the viewing audience and then turned the program over to Barias, who set the tone for the session. "Today is a conversation amongst friends, people that have known each other a long time. What we're doing today is in the spirit of sharing a glimpse of what our journey has been like so far in the industry, and also providing some insight and inspiration during these trying times," said Barias. Throughout the session, the panelists shared spirited exchanges and presented a wide array of expertise as they relayed their experiences in recording and mixing. While they confronted many of the difficult issues currently facing artists, engineers and producers, they also conveyed positive messages that can help anyone adjust to the circumstances brought about by the current health crisis.

"Considerations for Recording Studios as They Reopen" Published on May 28:
On May 28, the P&E Wing published a document providing suggested practices for reopening studios after mandatory shutdowns due to COVID-19. Not meant to supersede local ordinances, the considerations were assembled via numerous conversations with studio personnel around the country and the best knowledge about the virus available as of the publication date. The document also includes links to other resources. The document will be updated frequently as new information becomes available. An online version of the studio considerations can be found here.

Going forward, the P&E Wing will reprise its all-star lineup with a zoom webinar for Academy members on Friday, June 26 at noon PT when Barias, Ghenea, Young Guru, Marroquin, and Mincieli will go deeper into tech talk with "Keeping The Music Playing! Take Two." On July 1, at 2:00 p.m. PDT, the webinar will be released to the public on the Recording Academy Facebook page.