Quad LP/Tape Poll Preston, Billy: Music is My Life [Q8]

Help Support QuadraphonicQuad:

Rate "Music Is My Life"

  • 10: Great Sound, Great Mix, Great Content

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 6

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 4

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 3

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 2

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 1: Bad Sound, Bad Mix, Bad Content

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    7

EMB

2K Club - QQ Super Nova
Since 2002/2003
Joined
Feb 8, 2004
Messages
4,104
Location
The Top 40 Radio of My Mind
Billy's 2nd A&M chart album from 1972, this time eventually yielding a #1 hit. Q8-only release.

A&M 8Q-53516 [Q8]

Side 1:
1. We're Gonna Make It
2. One Time Or Another
3. Blackbird
4. I Wonder Why
5. Will It Go 'Round In Circles
6. Ain't That Nothin'

Side 2:
1. God Loves You
2. Make The Devil Mad(Turn On To Jesus)
3. Nigger Charlie
4. Heart Full Of Sorrow
5. Music's My Life
 

JonUrban

Forum Curmudgeon
Staff member
Admin
Moderator
Since 2002/2003
Joined
Mar 2, 2002
Messages
16,853
Location
Connecticut
It's discrete, unlike many A&M Q8's. I was "working" with this one the other day, and had the track "Will it Go Round in Circles" up on the PC, and it's totally discrete. There is even a harmonica that "goes around in circles" around the listening area.

Quite frankly, I had forgotten about this one and wrote it off as being a "crappy A&M Q8". I was totally surprised.

At least mine was discrete! (USA - Blue Q8). I'll post a scan in a bit.
 

Q-Eight

2K Club - QQ Super Nova
Since 2002/2003
Joined
Sep 30, 2003
Messages
3,350
Location
Castlegar, BC, Canada
Finally scored a Still Sealed copy of this Q8 and recieved it yesterday. After a couple of hours of repacking and rewinding it (why are sealed tapes always in the worst condition?) I gave the tape a play and while I can't say the mix is all that great, it is at least discrete.

It seems to be a one-sided mix as anything of importance happens on the right side. Drums are in right rear - always. Piano is slopped over to Front Right.
Left Rear has what sounds like a really nice vocal echo going on, and has the bass along with it, but it seems to be mixed quite low. I find myself having to turn down the other three to be able to hear left rear. At first listening, I almost thought it was a dead channel.

Front Left seems to have a muffled lead vocal, while front right is quite clear. I don't know if this is just my copy, but it seems to be that in all songs, Front Left is muffled. Some slight bleed of the piano from Front Right.

On the song "Will it go 'round in Circles", it kinda cements my feeling that Left Rear is turned down too much in the mix because as the melodica spins around the room, it almost disappears when hitting left rear.


All in all, I give it a 5. Discrete, but not well thought out. Either poorly mixed at the console or limited by the source multi's.
 
Last edited:

THX1136

Active Member
Joined
Oct 9, 2011
Messages
66
Location
Iowa
I can testify to it being discrete also. I did this up a year ago so quality issues are hazy, but I would agree with Q-Eight that there ARE issues with the mix itself. I'm good with a 5 also - not bad, but not great either.
 

sjcorne

2K Club - QQ Super Nova
Joined
Jan 1, 2010
Messages
3,520
Location
Southern NY
Suprised there's actually a poll for this one...

Decided to pull the trigger after reading it's one of those rare discrete A&M titles (thanks fredblue for mentioning it!). First A&M Q8 I've added to my collection. Yes, it's one of those drums in RR, bass in RL mixes, but it seems like there is some slight reverb/blending of channels so it's not a total 4-corner isolation job like Tower of Power or ELO.

I also found the left rear is out of balance- easily fixed in Audacity. I find with a lot of the tapes I record there are some subtle channel imbalances...I assume this is an azimuth-related issue? I'm too afraid to mess with the tape head settings, so I just tweak the files on the PC until I'm happy with the balance.

Sound quality is pretty good and the big hit "Will It Go Round In Circles" is a lot of fun in quad with the spinning harmonica. My favorites from A&M are still Quincy Jones' Body Heat and the Carpenter's Now & Then, but this one is definitely worth seeking out as well.

I'd give it a 7.
 

fredblue

2K Club - QQ Super Nova
QQ Supporter
Joined
Mar 30, 2009
Messages
24,368
Location
London, England
i found this one to be better than its reputation suggested and better than any number of A&M Quads.

the mix sounds like a Dick Bogert / Warren Vincent job to me but if it was by them then a smidge less discrete than their CBS Quad mixing work (Tower Of Power, Return To Forever, Miracles, Minnie Riperton).. and musically just my caper.

an "8" (and yes, it does go round in circles!)
 

humprof

2K Club - QQ Super Nova
Joined
Jun 10, 2016
Messages
2,792
Location
NoCal
I think I've only reviewed recordings in high-res formats before, so I'm not sure whether to apply the same standards here or to handicap. But I had the good fortune of listening to an amazing conversion, so I might rate the sonics a little higher than some of the folks above. Still some tape hiss, but no wrinkles or speed issues, and the frequency range is impressive for a Q8. Good DR, no oversaturation, and the converter seems to have fixed whatever balance or azimuth issues were bothering other people. So: 8 for fidelity.

Content: Oh, Man! Track after track of feel-good, funkified soul, interspersed with a few more laid-back cuts and some sanctified gospel, including one of the handful of convincing reimaginings of “Blackbird” I can name. You can't argue with Preston's vocals or keys. Add some fabulous guitar by George Johnson and solid bass by Louis Johnson (yep--the Brothers Johnson), and a horn section anchored by Tom Scott, and...well...you get an absolute 10 there.

As for the mix: I guess this is set-it-and-forget-it, but it never gets boring. “Phantom center-of-the-room” lead vocals (well, perceptually they’re front-and-center, but technically they’re in all four corners; same goes for piano, organ, and harpsichord[!], plus strings on a couple of tracks; flip the emphasis for horns). Drums right-rear, bass left-rear, lead guitar right-front (sometimes diagonally panned), rhythm-guitar left-front. Harmony & backing vocals mostly in the rears but often scattered around the room, depending upon the arrangement and the number of voices. And as @JonUrban & @sjcorne mention: the harmonica answers the Musical Question “Will It Go Round In Circles?” Totally works for me: 9.

That comes out to a 9. I wish there were more Preston quads!
 
Last edited:
Top