- Monday, Feb. 2, 2015
Gavin Lurssen, mastering engineer and founder of Lurssen Mastering, located on the lot at Hollywood Center Studios, has been nominated for a Grammy® Award for his work on the Lee Ann Womack album The Way I’m Livin’. The nomination, which Lurssen shares with recording engineer Chuck Ainlay, is for "Best Engineered Album, Non Classical." Winners will be announced on February 8.
Lurssen is a three-time Grammy Award as well as a Latin Grammy® Award winner. He won his first award in 2002 for Album of the Year for the soundtrack to O Brother, Where Art Thou? In 2004, he won for Best Historical Album for Martin Scorsese Presents the Blues: A Musical Journey; and in 2009 for Album of the Year for the Robert Plant/Alison Krauss album Raising Sand. He won a Latin Grammy Award for Best Engineered Album in 2010 for Diego Torres’s Distinto.
Lurssen describes his work as a mastering engineer as “akin to framing a painting or adding spice to a stew.” “An artist writes a song, a producer and recording/mixing engineer captures it in a recording, and then we come along to shape the sound,” he explains. “If we are successful, it sounds as though we haven’t done anything at all. We work very hard to make the music sound as natural as possible.”
Lurssen Mastering has mastered a number of recordings that are nominated for Grammys this year. They include Miranda Lambert’s “Automatic” (Best Country Solo Performance, Best Country Song), Lambert’s “Somethin’ Bad” with Carrie Underwood (Best Country Duo/Group Performance), Lambert’s Platinum (Best Country Album), Rosanne Cash’s “A Feather’s Not a Bird” (Best American Roots Performance, Best American Roots Song), Cash’s The River & The Thread (Best Americana Album), Ricky Kej and Wouter Kellerman’s Winds of Samsara (Best New Age Album), and Pharrell Williams’ “Happy” (Best Music Video, Best Pop Solo Performance).
Womack’s album, The Way I’m Livin’ was the first in six years from the singer, a former winner of a Country Music Association Award for Album of the Year. Produced by Womack’s husband Frank Liddell, it was recorded mostly live with some of country music’s top instrumentalists. “We aimed to deliver a sound of great depth and size,” says Lurssen, “while adding a vibe and flair that is felt rather than heard.”
Lurssen Mastering has operated out of a 3,000 square foot facility at Hollywood Center Studios for ten years. The company transformed the space into a world-class mastering facility, adding the necessary acoustical features and an array of audio technology, while retaining its brick walls, concrete floors, wood ceilings and loft. Lurssen and his team process audio using their highly-customized analog console. Gear includes ATC speakers, Benchmark converters, Esoteric Audio Research and GML equalizers, Manley and Fairchild compressors, Antelope digital clocks and a Sonic Studio mastering platform.
Hollywood Center Studios is located at 1040 N. Las Palmas Avenue, Los Angeles, California 90038. For more information, call (323) 860-0000 or visit www.HollywoodCenter.com.