Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Digital Dude—Patrick O’Connor Joins OTR and Cojema Music

Digital Dude—Patrick O’Connor joins us full time with a background in computers, digital recording and extensive graphics.

Last year at this time, Patrick came to the studio as a musician in Mick Overman’s band, Mick and the Maniacs. He is an incredible songwriter and like most, had a ‘day’ job managing a graphics department at a promotion company. His instincts and willingness to help us with graphics became invaluable. Patrick also brings a well honed knowledge of PC’s to the table and has forged new ground with our digital systems. With his attention to detail and reliability we hope to be able to move much quicker accomplishing our goals.

Hot Swap Room-- BYOR (Bring Your Own Rig).

An affordable way to have access to a great piano, iso booths, and high quality gear.

We’ve converted one of our iso booths into a small control room that has easy and private in/out access. We provide a small console, basic mics, cables and speakers, you bring in your digital rig and talent. When you need an isolated space for drums or use of a great piano, this can be a cost effective way for you to work. We provide an assistant, you do the engineering or instruct our team how to work with you. Ideal for producers with long or short term projects. Additional gear available for rent.

Red Carpet is gone, Green Walls are in

Sorry gang, the red carpet had to go. In its place, we’ve replaced the carpet and painted the walls a lime green color which adds a whole new feel. Come see it for yourself.

Expanded Facilities

We've added about 3000 square feet in a location down the street for office, housing, storage.

As much as we wanted the location next door, it just wasn’t possible, so instead, we’ve invested in a property down the street with incredible potential. Currently we are interested in short term rental for out of town execs, bands needing a place to stay in town while recording, additional office space to rent, folks between housing needing a place to stay. You can visit directly at

www.peninsulaguesthouse.com or call us at the studio.

Analog to Digital Restoration

A tried and true way to record to analog or restore your analog tapes to wave files.

Our first restoration project was using tapes from The Tubes performances from the mid 70’s. Ah, yes, that was a good year for tape. Kim Foscato, engineer for the Tubes, was there for the session as was Patrick O’Connor (OTR DigDude) and Felipe Neira (assistant for Kim and OTR). We made wav files on the MX2424 which proved to be reliable and sonically superior to other methods available. We downloaded to PC and transferred to DVD’s. From there, the wav files were transferred at producer, Al Cooper’s, studios to Nuendo Without a hitch.

Several bands have chosen to record basics to analog and take home the basic tracks. We now have incorporated a nearly seamless interface with the Otari MTR 90 and MX2424 system. We love recording to analog. This system offers flexibility to transfer to digital wave files easily.

Cookie Marenco writes for EQ

3 articles last year, from speakers to recording vocals to how to use delays and reverbs in a mix.

If you’d like to read the articles in full details, please go to

www.cookiemarenco.com where you can find all the articles written and interviews for other articles. Plans for next year are to write more articles and prep for a book.

Blue Coast Records SACD coming soon! – The Blue Coast Collection SACD is already in production. We were prompted by incredible reviews and sales in France to set a US release date for spring 2007. Currently, we have plans for an independent release in the US and more recordings to follow, including an incredible solo piano recording of Art Lande’s in preparation for release.

Silver Cable continues to beat the rest hands down.

Our new product division debuted the first beta cable products.

Tentatively called Goddess Labs, Cojema Music Group has launched a new product division specializing in high quality cable. We have experienced tremendous differences when compared to Monster and Mogami especially where high highs and low lows are concerned. Bass players are especially anxious to have the cable. Replacing your cable with our Silver Cable in your speaker chain will amaze you. If you are looking for full frequency response and definition in your chain, you’ll need to own one or two.

For the next year, we will offer the cable at a beta test price. It’s not cheap, but it is a value and will clean up your home recording chain. Money back guarantee.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Optimizing Your Mixes, Mastering Services Increased at OTR



Do you want your music to sound as BIG and CLEAR as possible? Let us add a touch of analog to your digital mixes and return some of the life back to your music. With over 15 years experience mastering and editing all formats, we have developed a propietary system using the finest analog and digital audio tools. We work with 2 tracks mixes from 1/2" tape, DAT, all PCM digital wav forms and DSD (one bit recording).

Other services include
* Transfer 2" and 1/2" tapes to the digital format of your choice
* Onsite 'baking' of your tapes to restore their original glissen as well as preventing breakage
* Consultation and evaluation to optimise your mixes BEFORE you proceed
* Archiving precious masters and reviving priceless tape and vinyl
* Prepping your mixes for all internet audio formats and podcasts
* Embedding the text for your CD
* Creating a website you can manage at home with your choice of paid downloads, audio/video streaming, calendar of events, news, mailing list, blogs and more.

OTR Studios has been a Bay Area institution specializing in high quality recording for more than 20 years. Though we were one of the first studios to offer digital recording in the early 80's, we continue to stand behind the use of analog tape for it's high quality and longevity. OTR founder, Cookie Marenco, was an early pioneer of internet audio in the mid 90's. She lead the team that recorded live and uploaded to the internet, the first cd quality paid download during a time when broadband was only a dream.

Now that internet audio is a must for those in the industry and home recording is easy to obtain, isn't it time you distinguish your art with the highest quality representation?

Basic Full Package Mastering Flat Fee for 60 minute CD, $1500. Adjustments for added items or smaller projects can be made.
Please call OTR Studios at 650 595 8475 or send inquiries to info@otrstudios.com


Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Desmond Podcasts the WEIRD from OTR

Desmond Feher, our Internet Audio Specialist came up with the first in his series of podcasts.

Let's just say, we don't call it OUT THERE Recording for nothing.... Desmond has found the core of why we are engineers!

all these recordings came from the vaults of OTR. let us know what you think...

check out the 30 minute podcast... The Loose Mix...
the 60 minute version is more 'normal' for you light weights... The Tight Mix

if you can name one of the artists, you'll get an hour of free studio time.
if you name the song correctly, you'll get a second hour!

good until the end of April... In May we'll post the listings....

yahoo podcasts

pretty blue... i like it
podcast alley has alot more advertising crap, but works

podcast alley

far as we're aware, it doesn't appear you have to download some strange software for either.

If you want to know more about setting up your own podcasts for your website, contact Desmond at OTR Studios.
650 595 8475. He'll set you up!


.....................Blu Kube is never far away

Monday, April 03, 2006

Silver Cable tests against Mogami and WINS!

Dear Swammi Mack....
We tested the 60 foot pair of XLR cables you made from the Jean Marie Reynaud silver wire. It sounds incredible. LIke Kleenex was removed from the highs and the lows of the previous cable (which was Mogami.. not terribly shabby). Andy and Desmond were here to confirm how great it sounded. OUr reactions were immediate!

Next test is going to be against Monster's best... yep Beauty vs the Beast. I'll let you know how it goes.


Guitar Center has Manager training at OTR

On April 18, Guitar Center will have managers from their western California stores at OTR Studios. The purpose is for new product demostrations from IK Multimedia, Focusrite, and Blue Microphones.

Jose M. Blanco (Grillo to those of us who know him at the studio) put the event together. He is the Product Specialist for 9 Guitar Center stores
from Fresno, CA to Medford, OR.and is in charge of training the pro audio department teams.

IK Multimedia will host a public event demonstrating their new products at 7pm, April 18, at the Guitar Center on Van Ness in San Francisco. Representatives from OTR will be attending the event.

Grillo is a favorite around here having been a Blue Coast recording artist and incredibly talented flamenco singer.
We are grateful to him for thinking about us!

Hope to see you at Guitar Center!

OTR debuts the Showroom and Swap Shop

We’re always looking for new forms of entertainment and trying to rid
ourselves of some as well….

IN with the new, OUT with the old….

NEW! NHT has provided us with 3 sets of speakers.
From the top of
the line XD series to the M-OO’s (little powered monitors) and their
studio monitors. Must come hear and see!

OLD! We’re selling our practically brand new Genelec 1030A’s,
Self powered speakers about $4000 new. Very portable, the darlings of the industry for some time. OTR has NO MORE ROOM.

Call for bids or
details. 650 595 8475.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Silver Cable NOW AVAILABLE in limited quantities

Hi Friends,

Many of you have heard about the silver cable we like to call 'THE GODDESS' around here because of the unearthly quality it possesses. The frequency response is beyond superb. Highs and lows you haven't heard before.

Most recently we tested it with Craig Owens, a local bassist. Craig has a 20' top of the line cable from Monster Cable... which we compared with our 300 foot line level cable (yes, the length of a football field). Our engineers on hand were Rico, Andy, myself and others who all heard the depth of the lows and highs of the highs improve.

Now, not everybody is going to need a 300 foot cable, but we were so impressed by the quality, we have enlisted tech extraordinaire, 'Swammi' Mack Clark, to cut the cable into shorter lengths and make it available for sale. It's not cheap... but then, how many cables of this caliber do you really need?

We're importing it from France where it is built by legendary french audiophile speaker manufacturer, Jean Marie Reynaud. He originally built the cable for the French Aerospace Industry and holds the patents on it. Our association with him, through his son, Jean Claude, has allowed us to specially adapt this cable for our needs. Ultimately, it can be used for line, mic, speaker and power cables.

In the audiophile world, the speaker cable goes for about $600 for a 20 foot line. With the high Neutrix ends, we will retail it for $400. Through OTR it will be directly sold with a 25% discount. Call Cookie at 650 591 6857 if you are interested. We can also schedule an appointment to test it as well.

We love our ipods, but we love our great sound MORE!

Photo from Canyonlands June 2005
taken by Jean Claude Reynaud

While on their way to a remote recording for Garett Brennan, Cookie and Jean took a wrong turn.

good news, they found him eventually!

Ringtones.. how's why's and what the hell's!

Ringtones are a mystery... The companies make it seem that anyone and every phone can have them... Unfortunately, It's not true. First step.. check out to see if you can download them to your phone. In a few years, this won't be an issue, but for now, don't get your hopes up that all phones will download your ringtones....

such is cutting edge technology... you'd THINK the blackberry could handle a ringtone given how much you pay for one! think again

Check out this article we found at yahoo.

yahoo mobile

Sunday, March 12, 2006

What Every Artist Wants ... If this is YOU, get a consultant

The names were changed and text edited, but was a classic exchange of how every consultation begins.

If This is YOU (and I'm sure it is or was or will be)......
Please read before you end up with 1000 cds in your garage...


Hi Mr. Madeupname ... I'd Like to help, but you're asking for alot and offering very little. Please read. I'm in BLUE.

Mr. Madeupname wrote on 3/12/2006, 12:49 PM:

> Yes, we need to meet for 5-10 minutes first.
> You should have the physical output product by now in your mailbox.

got it, listened...

> You may or may not like it, and may or may not know of people in that subgenre of interest (?)

i like this genre and have recorded similar styles..

> My top 3 goals ranked
> 1) Method to SELL lots of copies of the CD I gave.
> 2) Method to get those songs Into Movies, TV, radio (without payola schemes, and better than the usual TAXI.com route)
> 3) Working with larger artists and promotors, without sweat circuit tours.
> My top constraint
> 1) I have a full time job, and family with two small children 5 & 8.
> (so anything that sounds like go ahead and tour to grow your audience, does not apply in my case).
> Some possible out
> I can quit my job and remove that constraint, when the cash starts coming in, but not before. So its the usually business dillemma....

In some fashon, you have asked the top 4 questions all artists ask me during consultation....
how do i get a manager?
how do i get a booking agent?
how do i get a record deal?
how do i quit my day job?

you won't want to hear this, but you need a 3-5 year plan.
what i heard on your cd was adequate, but without a substantial fanbase, nothing that singles your music out as special enough to warrant a deal. bands in this genre make it through touring and fanbase in general.
to bypass and go to film/soundtrack is a good option, but requires the schmooze and wait factor.

if you want to make it based on the cd alone, you'll need marketing $$$ or a more unique sound.

in general, i liked the cd, saw the 'promise' but not the substance. not to say you can't hit the jack pot with a new label steaming with money from foreign software engineers who think they can get rich. you might even know a few.

it's a tough business, getting tougher. with wife and children having needs, you're in a tough spot, but not insurmountable.

give that background, it doesn't help my credibility with my contacts to offer you to them knowing the 'gig' requires 2-3 years of touring and scuffling and $$$ to float yourself and family.

you're in a tough spot. be glad you still love music and are still creating. work your website, build your community, schmooze and spread your dollar... don't be stingy with 'consultants' or hired gun artists at the top of the food chain... they may not be directly responsible to show quantitative 'results', but could lead other bigger horses to your water at some point if they like you. it's all about relationships, less about your music.

> Lets confirm a slot on Monday via email. I do have a webcast 11-12 Tuesday, but I can meet around 12:30 Tues or some near time....

that's my 10 minutes of free time ... if you want to schedule more, it'll be on the $ clock.
i wish you the best.
cookie marenco 650 591 6857

Friday, March 10, 2006

Marenco comments on Millennia Origins in April EQ Magazine

Monte Vallier stopped by OTR Studios getting insights on how Cookie Marenco uses the Millennia Origins (SST-1) in her studio. Marenco has 4 of the one channel units she often refers to as "sprinkles of gold".

"They are incredible", Marenco waxes, "We use the unit more for mix down than record, though the tube preamp sounds incredible. Many times we go in and out of the unit without engaging the compressor, eq's or other processing and the sound is unexplainably beautified. We love them for mastering as well.... something about the 21K is magic."

OTR Studios also uses the 8 channel solid state preamp from Millennia as a staple for recording as well.

The review will be featured in the April issue of EQ magazine.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006



For those of you who missed our email newsletter promotion of February 2006, we have another opportunity for you to get one free hour of studio time allotted to your account. The offer is only good for those who did not get a chance to sign up for our newsletter yet.

If you schedule a check out at OTR with Andy to see the studio (or just a friendly visit), we will sign you up for our newsletter and credit your account the hour. The checkouts will be only available in a limited quantity so that we don't interfer with the sessions going on.

Call Andy for an appointment at 650 759 1750. That's his direct line.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Online Email Sign Up, Get a FREE hour of Studio Time

Hi all! during the month of February, we're having a drive to get our community signed up online. For the rest of this month, those of you who have previously signed up and those who sign up thru Feb 2006 will have their account credited for ONE FREE HOUR of studio time.

If you've already signed up, please contact Andy Kalt for details and restrictions.

The loop hole is that your entire band can sign up and YES get all those hours added to one project. The restriction is that the free hour can only be added to a 4 hour block of time.... still not so bad if you have 4 band members... you have 4 hours of studio time credited.

Signing up to our email list means you'll be getting newletters and updates with discounted pricing, information on the studio activities, and be part of our community.

You can find the sign up on the home page where it says... SIGN UP FOR OUR NEWSLETTER blah blah blah...

Call us if you have questions. Thanks!

Tape Restoration and Baking

Here are a couple of articles of interest to those with analog tape.