By Omega Engineer, Scotty O’Toole
I got my interest in recording at a fairly young age. It all began when my grandmother had given my brother and I a cassette tape based karaoke machine as a gift. We were aspiring musicians and had just started to learn drums and guitar. The “machine” had two tape decks and two Hi-Z mic inputs. The box had a built in speaker and headphone jack and came with two cheap dynamic microphones. One of the coolest features was the “built- in” spring reverb. The idea was to purchase karaoke cassettes from the company, play them back from deck 1, plug your mics in, add reverb, sing along and record your vocal performance along with the song to deck 2. Well, it didn’t take long for me to figure out I could record my brother playing drums directly to deck 2 (through the crappy Hi-Z mic), play that back from deck 1 and play guitar along with the recorded drums and record it all back to deck 2. Rinse and repeat! Instant sound on sound recording! We had so much fun and wrote a bunch of bad songs but being able to layer ourselves over and over again was incredible to me at that age. I was maybe 13 at the time.
Fast forward about 15 years (Does anyone even get the fast forward reference anymore?). I started working at a small multitrack studio about 1999 after taking some classes at the Omega Studios School and haven’t looked back. I’ve been working as a full time engineer, out of a variety of studios, ever since. I’ve been fortunate to have worked with many great artists and bands over the years.
As a senior staff engineer at Omega Studios, I continue to work on great sessions as well as share my experience with students of the Omega Studios School.
Some audio engineering sessions I’ve done include work with:
- Aretha Franklin
- Raheem DeVaughn
- Deanna Bogart
- Chuck Brown
- Corey Smith Band
- Fall Out Boy
- Pig Destroyer
- The Track Record
- Pauline Oliveros