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Christopher Dean - For Absent Friends Album Cover

Artist Name:
Christopher Dean  Title: For Absent Friends
Genre: Contemporary Folk (Guitar Instrumental)  Rating:


2011 iMac, Intel Core i7, Pro Tools 2018 12.0, Focusrite Clarett 4Pre, PreSonus Faderport 8, Roswell Mini K-47 mic, Behringer Truth B2031, AKG K99 headphones for tracking, beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro for mixing.


“For Absent Friends” is an acoustic based instrumental track. Steven Hawkins wrote the piece. Christopher performed and recorded his rhythm, lead and bass guitars in addition to all editing, mixing and mastering, at his home studio in El Cajon, CA. Jim Soldi recorded the six sting guitar/mandolin, second guitar and VI Cello, including arrangement, at his studio in Ramona, CA.

Reviewed By Marty Peters

This month’s Spotlight is a sublime acoustic instrumental collaborative effort, masterfully performed and recorded by Christopher and Jim in their respective home studios. Folks, this is simply superlative work in our opinion, we have heard an incredible amount of acoustic instrumentation in submissions during our tenure at Reader’s Tracks ( Tapes ), but precious few of this quality. In his notes, Christopher relates that the tracking of his Taylor guitar was a combination of the onboard pickup and the Roswell Mini K-47 microphone, and what a sound it is! We are treated to a lovely combination of air from the mic, and presence from the pickup. The flawless execution and judicious panning leave ample space for the additional sound sources, and in keeping with Christopher’s guitar, each is superbly performed, recorded and presented in the mix. Kudos to Jim for his sensitive virtual instrument Cello arrangement here, along with the gorgeous Mandolin and second guitar. Both of these gentlemen obviously possess incredible chops as well as recording skill. Lastly we must complement Christopher on his beautiful mix and mastering. Each sound source is awarded its own space without compromising the unity of the whole. Simply fantastic!


Over the years we have encouraged you loyal readers to use our Spotlight feature as both a learning tool as well as an inspiration, and we can’t stress that enough here. From the precision of the performances to the tonal quality of the instruments and down through the recording/mixing, everything in “For Absent Friends” is of the highest quality. We STRONGLY urge you to spend time with the track, learning from the best is good business!




Christopher Dean, [email protected]


Readers’ Tracks