A quartet of possibly the rarest Q8's ever?

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Q-Eight

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Hahaha! Doubtful. But what a wonderful topic.

Here are four of the strangest ladies I have in my collection. As far as I can tell, these are all "One-Offs"; meaning, these are the only Q8's ever put out by this company/record label/person.

Iguana - The Winds of Alamar on Quadratrak
The Marina Strings play the Neil Diamond Songbook on 20th Century Tapes
Bhen Lanzaroni on McConnell Records Ltd.
"Boogie Woogie Session" featuring Big Willie Johnson on Duo

We have discussed a few of these titles in the past. Some of them have catalog numbers that would suggest other releases but, if they exist I cannot locate any reference to them. There were a few little bits in vintage Billboard Magazines that said more titles were on the way from 20th Century, one of which being a Barry White title. However, I doubt it exists beyond that article. The Iguana tape I doubted the Q8's existence up until very recently. In all my years of collecting, this is the only one I can remember seeing. Interestingly, if you Google the address on the back of the tape, it locates to a small, suburban cul-de-sac just outside Kensington, Maryland. I believe this "record company" was headquarted literally at someone's house.

Beyond that, I have no other information to share about these tapes. Three out of Four are nice and four-corner discrete; the Big Willie tape being Quadra-Monic. Taking an educated guess, I suspect it to be a live recording session where each microphone was set up 90-degrees out of phase to the other microphones. So if something like a saxophone appears, it will appear very loud in Front Left, and at about 50% of that level in the other three channels. Drums are mostly to the rear, and bass is mostly to the front.

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Fourplay

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I LOVE the term "Quadra-Monic!" I sense a new thread in the offing.

"Quadra-Monic Recordings" - four channels of mono, or maybe "A Waste Of Three Channels."
 

sjcorne

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Three out of Four are nice and four-corner discrete; the Big Willie tape being Quadra-Monic.
"The Winds Of Alamar" is actually four-corner discrete? The QS LP is...weird. Some songs appear to have acoustic guitars coming mostly from the rears. On others, the vocals are louder in the rears than in the fronts. Normally I'd put something like that down to matrix limitations, but QS LPs usually decode amazingly well with the Surround Master.
 

Q-Eight

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"The Winds Of Alamar" is actually four-corner discrete? The QS LP is...weird. Some songs appear to have acoustic guitars coming mostly from the rears. On others, the vocals are louder in the rears than in the fronts. Normally I'd put something like that down to matrix limitations, but QS LPs usually decode amazingly well with the Surround Master.
It's a nice mix. Very discrete, but it uses every inch of the sound stage. Center Front, Center back and Phantom Centers left and right are all used. I would imagine it was mixed 24-track and did their due diligence when it came to miking instruments. To my ears, they used two mics when capturing the acoustic guitars; like a close mic to capture the actual instrument and then a room mic or one set further back to capture the ambience. Some songs feature an acoustic guitar, that on my scope, looks like it's coming from Phantom Left, but there is a distinct difference between what's in FR versus BR. It's either very well-done studio trickery or the miking method I mention above. Close mic in FR, ambience mic in BR. There's TONS of vocals going on in each corner. Drums/Bass across the front, natch.

I guess don't think of it as a Larry Keyes-style, balls-out 4-corner discrete. I suppose an example would be one song has an acoustic guitar in BL and an electric piano in BR. Well, you can hear 10% of the acoustic guitar in BR with the piano, and 10% of the piano in BL with the acoustic guitar. I get the feeling the intention was to put the listener in the center of the performance. It's quite pleasing. It's a DENSE mix.... very similar to the BTO Quads where they've used up every track of a 24-track to capture the performance. YES, there is discrete information but there's also an ambient sound to it to avoid any silent channels or weirdness.

I like it. The music really does have a Bread meets the Eagles kinda thing going on. Like, the talent of Bread with the songwriting skills of the Eagles. :LOL:

I would imagine with so much going on, it overwhelms the QS matrix.
 

quadtrade

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I had the Winds OF Alamar on a reel with a dissertation about how it was a audiophile recording. More were coming from the company. I think they issued a couple classical titles, one i remember was melting and unplayable even after baking. I believe they used good tape for 1976 which had the oxide that melts away after a few decades. I think Bob converted Winds. I could post it if wanted.
 

Q-Eight

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I had the Winds OF Alamar on a reel with a dissertation about how it was a audiophile recording. More were coming from the company. I think they issued a couple classical titles, one i remember was melting and unplayable even after baking. I believe they used good tape for 1976 which had the oxide that melts away after a few decades. I think Bob converted Winds. I could post it if wanted.
Huh. I've never seen anything else from them. They must be exceptionally rare titles.
 

Q-Eight

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I wonder where the studio was? If you Google the address on the back of the tape, this is the location you get. The house in the middle is supposed to be 4114 Wexford Court in Kensington, Maryland. I thought maybe it was a misprint as there's a nearby Wexford Drive, but you get an even more depressing bungalow at that address.

I'm not getting the feeling this was a large operation.


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