null At Home with Reed Harvey
At Home with Reed Harvey
What inspired you to start making or recording music?
I started recording music when I was 15 years old. I played bass in a band and found a cheap used 4-track recorder. I soon started reading ‘The Musician's Guide to Home Recording’ by Peter McLan, and was hooked. I remember mixing my first album on my parents’ home stereo speakers - without much of a clue as to what I was doing!
What was your first ever piece of recording gear?
It was a Tascam 4-track cassette recorder. I loved how when you played the session back on a normal cassette deck, it was ridiculously slowed down. That was enough to keep 15 year-old me entertained for hours.
Which room in your home is your studio based, and were there any challenges in setting it up?
Before the pandemic I was building a sauna in my backyard. I had just gotten power and insulation installed, when I was laid off and was suddenly without a place to mix and do sound design. That same day I decided to pivot and build out my sauna as a workspace. It was a huge undertaking to build out and acoustically treat such a small, boxy space. I knew I needed speakers that could help compensate for the inherent limitations I would be facing, and my first thought was a GLM-based system. The other challenge is how well thermally insulated the space is. It was, after all, intended as a sauna. I found an external air-conditioning unit that is fairly quiet, and it’s going to be my lifeline this summer.
Which Genelec models do you have?
What type of projects do you use your speakers for?
I mostly do sound design and mixing. I work on a variety of projects, including commercials for television and radio, film, and my favorite - which is animated series.
What do you think of the speakers, and what do you like about them?
These are the most precise monitors I've ever worked on. I've noticed details in music that I've listened to one hundred times before that I'd never heard before. I've also noticed more of what turns me off in a mix. This level of clarity and trueness has elevated my work and given me renewed passion in my craft. I got the subwoofer after working with just the 8331As for a few weeks, and the main benefit I've noticed is enhanced clarity in the low-end. It's still something I need to watch out for since I mix in such a small space, but I now have more confidence in my mix decisions in the low frequencies.
What’s your top tip for being creative at home?
Embrace the new benefits and inspirations to be found, rather than dwelling on what you miss about the office. I'm really enjoying taking frequent breaks and letting my mind wander. I'm exploring my neighborhood, exercising and reconnecting with friends. When I sit back down to work I often find new solutions to what was stumping me previously.
Have you come across any new gear or apps to make home creating easier?
Source Elements has a great suite of tools to work with clients remotely. Some clients will prefer the ease and familiarity of Zoom, but for those wanting higher quality I definitely recommend checking them out.
Have you picked up any new skills during lockdown?
I'm amazed at the amount of learning I've done while working at home. I've picked up a number of new plugins that I've been putting through their paces. I started an online program to improve my piano skills which has already started paying off. I've also redesigned my workflow, including how I organize sessions. There's nothing like a complete change of scenery to help you re-evaluate old habits.
Which three artists would you love to collaborate with in a Zoom lockdown session?
Ben Burtt, Walter Murch, and Charles Deenen.
Since working at home, what has become your ’Desert Island’ piece of gear? What can’t you live without?
I think it will always be true that as long as I have a microphone and a way of recording I'll be able to have fun and be creative. Sometimes that's all you need, and it's the one thing I could never do without. I still rely on my voice as the most diverse and useful tool in my quiver.
To find out more about Reed, visit steambox.co.
Do you want to be featured in our ‘At Home’ series? If so, just post some pictures of your home setup on Instagram using the #GenelecProAtHome hashtag. We’ll be keeping a look out for the most interesting home rigs, so who knows? We may be in touch with you!