Every engineer seems to have one - the wallet full of CDs or the iTunes folder that he uses to calibrate his ears to whatever task he's approaching or monitors he's working on. I’m no different. Of course, the selection of these is a very personal choice. Your mileage may vary…
What's currently in my wallet:
David Gilmour Rattle That Lock The clarity of this recording is what stands out. It is just extremely smooth and clean sounding.
Don Felder Road to Forever - A great recording with a really full bass, some shimmer trebles, and tasty guitar sounds out of a mid-'50s Tweed Deluxe.
Jeff Beck Emotion and Commotion - A very clean recording of guitar and orchestra with excellent production values.
Eagles Long Road Out of Eden - Elliot Scheiner's mixing is state of the art
David Gilmour On An Island - calibrates my ambience sense
Soundtrack from The Patriot, engineer Shawn Murphy – Shawn is probably the best movie scoring engineer out there and this one is a feast for the ears. Good for strings. Of course, it doesn’t hurt one bit that John Williams put some of his sweetest melodies in this one.
Mark Knopfler Sailing to Philadelphia - Wonderful guitar tones and pristine, spare recording. A console manufacturer turned me on to this one.
Norah Jones Come Away With Me - Arif Mardin crafted the perfect pristine, intimate audio portrait that defined an artist. Superb jazz-sensibility, minimalism
Sarah MacLachlin Surfacing - a great source for indie inspriation and out-of-the-box thinking
Doobie Brothers Sibling Rivalry - Elliot Scheiner mixed and Ted Jensen mastered, a great modern mix statement for a classic band
Sovereign Grace "How Deep" from Valley of Vision - excellent clarity and balance plus really crisp upper end and solid, penetrating bass
Eagles “How Long” from Long Road Out of Eden
Joe Walsh "Inner Tube/Theme from Boat Weirdos" from But Seriously Folks - Bill Szymczyk engineered this song on board the 72' 4-track yacht Endless Seas with overdubs at Szymczyk's Bayshore Recording. Once you fall in love it doesn't get old. It shows you how a really good mix will age gracefully. It also features a KILLER hi-hat that really tickles the right ear.
The Allman Brothers The Fillmore Concerts - Even old-tech can be exciting.
David Gilmour Live in Gdansk - A nice mix of a large presentation including a symphony orchestra
Amy Grant Time Again - The first part of the album has great energy, all of it has great vocal harmonies
Live DVDs & Blu-Rays:
Toto 35th Anniversary Live in Poland - A really strong modern mix.
Eric Clapton Crossroads I - Crossroads IV - Elliot Scheiner (again) served as the mix supervisor
David Gilmour Remember That Night, Live From Royal Albert Hall (Blu-ray) - A new standard
Eagles Hell Freezes Over - an early standard, pristine for its time
Eagles Farewell I - Live From Melbourne - A really nice surround.
Amy Grant Time Again - Nicely done.
Pink Floyd Pulse DVD remaster - for just plain old bigness and complexity