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Teasing the Korean

Speed Correcting the Bud Powell Roulette Album on the Capitol CD

13 posts in this topic

Does anyone happen to know if the speed is off by the same percentage throughout the CD, or does it vary?  Everything sounds like it runs a bit fast to my ears.  While musicians can play tunes in whatever keys they want, the keys would suggest that many of these run a half-step sharp.  Others seem to be in reasonable keys.   Any insights?

Edited by Teasing the Korean

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The version in this set has been speed corrected.

R-2507674-1395166746-7625.jpeg.jpg

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15 minutes ago, Chuck Nessa said:

The version in this set has been speed corrected.

R-2507674-1395166746-7625.jpeg.jpg

Thanks.  Do you have the other version, and if so, can you comment on the speed/pitch difference?

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I dumped the other one when I got this. Memory says zilch about the consistency of the speed.

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13 minutes ago, Chuck Nessa said:

I dumped the other one when I got this. Memory says zilch about the consistency of the speed.

Thanks.  I did a quick search for audio samples from the box you posted above, but I could not find any.

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Iirc there's been a Japanese single-CD reissue of this material that was also corrected (in addition to the box Chuck mentions above)... Jazzbo may be able to verify.  

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Thanks all.  I hope that someone here has both versions and can comment.  I can easily speed/pitch correct these; I just wanna be sure I'm not doin' it wrong.

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Pitch is often off on Youtube jazz items. I am told that this is to prevent the algorithm detecting unauthorized postings, but I don't know.

Most people know that Side 1 of the original "Kind Of Blue" LP plays a quarter tone sharp because the tape recorder used to record was running slow and the LP was mastered with a tape player that played at the correct speed. I remember, as a young man, having trouble playing along with it. It was later found that a second tape recorder, running at the correct speed, was used, and CD reissues used that tape and were at concert pitch. This error was inexcusable for a major company such as Columbia. They also issued Miles's "Green Dolphin Street" session in mono at first (fair enough), but in the 1960s, they put out a would-be stereo LP with fake stereo! It sounded awful. At the time, the original mono LP was out-of-print, and I was glad to find a mono copy on a visit to Paris, France. Then, years later, in the CD era, it turned out that the session had been recorded in stereo! Of course it was, because Rudy van Gelder began to record in stereo in the spring of 1957. A major company would have the latest equipment. Then, we found out that the "Miles Ahead" sessions of the pervious year (1957) exists almost entirely in stereo, as does Brubeck's 1957 "Dave Digs Disney". What a sloppy performance by Columbia.

Getting back to pitch, I have had Bird's Dial material since the late 60s, but I was recently playing a CD copy of "Relaxing At Camarillo", and it was in B. The tune was played in C, of course. No way they would play in in B! The famous 1957 video of Lady Day with Pres doing "Fine And Mellow" is at the wrong speed and sounds in E! Obviously, they wouldn't have played it in that key, so which was it, Eb of F? The answer comes from Gerry Mulligan's solo. He plays the third note of the key in the high register and you can see that he's playing the baritone saxophone's top E (concert G), so the key must be Eb.

One conclusion of this is not to trust the pitch of online music and videos. I hope that official CD reissues check the pitch.

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The worst offender in the speed/pitch department has to be An Evening with George Shearing on MGM.  Side 1, presumably taken from 78s, runs someplace around a perfect 4th or perfect 5th slower than the true speed!  It was like they transferred the 78s at 45 rpm and didn't correct it for the LP. 

No idea if all copies are like this, or if it was ever corrected.

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A 4th or more?? That is beyond ridiculous!

By the way, pitch can be corrected on my Pioneer CDJ CD decks. You stick in the CD, disconnect the "pitch lock", and move the speed slider up or down as required, to get the correct pitch, and record the output onto a CDr. This changes the speed of the music, of course. But you can change the speed to anything you want by putting the CDr you just recorded into the machine with the pitch lock enabled. That keeps the pitch fixed while the speed is changed. Once again, you record the output onto a CDr. This two-step process is a bit tedious, but it will work. I have never done it, though.

I seem to remember reading that when old 78s were transferred to LP, the speeds were sometimes checked and corrected. 78s were often notoriously out-of-tune, sometimes because of the 60 cycles AC in North America and 50 cycles in other countries, including Britain and Europe. Also, because of gaps in the armatures of an electric phonographs, it was hard to get the speed right. Of course, you could vary the speed on a windup phonograph. I used one of those to play my Dad's 78s when I was an infant. Early exposure to Fats Waller, Billie Holiday, Jack Teagarden and many others. My original Android phone back then was windup, too.

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10 hours ago, Shrdlu said:

I seem to remember reading that when old 78s were transferred to LP, the speeds were sometimes checked and corrected. 78s were often notoriously out-of-tune, sometimes because of the 60 cycles AC in North America and 50 cycles in other countries, including Britain and Europe. Also, because of gaps in the armatures of an electric phonographs, it was hard to get the speed right. Of course, you could vary the speed on a windup phonograph. I used one of those to play my Dad's 78s when I was an infant. Early exposure to Fats Waller, Billie Holiday, Jack Teagarden and many others. My original Android phone back then was windup, too.

The 78s that were recorded electrically apparently have some sort of a low-pitched electrical hum that can be used to verify the correct speed. 

10 hours ago, Shrdlu said:

By the way, pitch can be corrected on my Pioneer CDJ CD decks. You stick in the CD, disconnect the "pitch lock", and move the speed slider up or down as required, to get the correct pitch, and record the output onto a CDr. This changes the speed of the music, of course. But you can change the speed to anything you want by putting the CDr you just recorded into the machine with the pitch lock enabled. That keeps the pitch fixed while the speed is changed. Once again, you record the output onto a CDr. This two-step process is a bit tedious, but it will work. I have never done it, though.

I plan to just load the tracks into ProTools or Audacity, make the adjustments, and burn a CD-R.  Not ideal, but it's cheaper than buying that box set.  (I already have all the other Blue Note stuff. 

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