Phantom Vox Studios
and mega producer and artist
Draco Rosa needed a studio, he created a space that would satisfy
his basic requirements. This meant a balanced mix of both worlds
where the best gear and instruments available in the world meet
an unparalleled vibe. The result is Phantom
Vox (also one of the pseudonyms he uses for writing songs for
got the grand tour by Draco himself in June of 2006 who was heading
to perform at the 40th Annual Montreux Jazz Festival with legendary
vision and organic approach reflects the free-flowing atmosphere
at Phantom Vox Studios in West Hollywood. The fine art and minimalist
decor in the lounges and production rooms is in vast contrast with
the heavy curtains, rich colors and impressive collection of vintage
guitars, B2, two set of drums and everything from surf boards to
bicycles housed in the main studio (the latter two hanging from
the ceiling). This is truly a recording facility build by a musician
for musicians. "When we first moved into this space, it served
as rehearsal space for my band. Then few architect friends of mine
from Puerto Rico came to visit and one day we said, le'ts float
the floor," says Draco.
Romance Of Neve
to 8-time Grammy winner engineer/mixer Benny Faccone who leases
space next door (
The Cavern) things got serious when Draco decided to invest
in a vintage Neve."For me it's about the Romance of Neve. It's
an evolving process. We add a new piece to augment the room when
it's time. I purchased a Mojave stereo microphone - MA 200 this
week," adds Draco who has a complete Final Cut Pro studio next
door where they offer video editing, web design and graphic services.
When we visited, they were working on a documentary of a recent
concert in an 18,000 seater hall engineered by Ed Cherney.
Music In the House
The studio has
hosted collaborations with session musicians like guitarist Rusty
Anderson and drummer Vinnie Coliauta, Patrick Warren (keyboards),
Paul Bushnell (bass), Carla Azar (drums) and producer/arrangers
Walter Afanasieff, George Noriega,
Luis Conte and the legendary Van Dyke Parks, to name a few.
It's also a
place where Rosa will invite a roomful of flamenco musicians from
Spain or a 20-piece string section. "I go by the adrenaline
or the heartbeat. I just try to keep the spontaneity, which is what
I thrive on."
:Pan y Cebolla
The enigmatic Rosa, who has four solo albums under his belt, is
best known for three things: founding and fronting alt rock/funk
band Maggie's Dream; crafting hits like "Living La Vida Loca"
and "The Cup of Life" for his one-time Menudo-mate Ricky
Martin; and his late-'90s Latin rock classic, Vagabundo, which contained
several songs based on the dark poetry of Baudelaire.
a painter and poet, Rosa is blessed with a full artistic range.
His new album release, Mad Love features 13 songs recorded and mixed
at Phantom Vox. All tracks are produced and written by Rosa who's
known for his overflowing spontaneity, passion, and emotion.
Good Things Take Time
was two years in the making. I'm very expensive in the studio. We
had tons of material, about 60 plus songs," says Rosa who after
recording all these songs, realized the album is not ready yet.
That's when he looked up producer/songwriter George Noriega, with
whom he'd worked on Ricky Martin's breakthrough 1999 English-language
debut. They put together a song called "Como Me Acuerdo"
("How I Remember"), Mad Love's only tune in Spanish, and
took off from there.
Vox Studios Lounge
Draco, who hits
a stunning falsetto climax on "My Eyes Adore You," credits
Noriega with helping him come out of his shell with his singing.
"For years people have been saying man you should sing more,
you have a really nice voice. So George said, 'Listen, man, you
gotta sing. Don't hide behind a stack of vocals.'"
In addition to the aforementioned raucous session with Spanish musicians
at Phantom Vox Studios Mad Love features local musicians recorded
in Puerto Rico, Brazil, and Spain. In New York, he recruited legendary
tres player Nelson Gonzalez. "Nelson played on 'Crash Push.'
I said to him, listen man, you're playing for Miles!"
wanted a space of my own, Draco suggested the studio next door to
Phantom Vox. His space is amazingly spacious tracking room that
houses a fabulous 32 input NEVE 8068A (came from producer Scott
Litt's studio). when the room is available, I can also take my sessions
to Phantom Vox. it can't get better than that. " says Faccone.
8 Pink Elephants by Draco
Walk to Hollywood adjacent restaurant favorites like the Argentinean
Gardel's or staples like Gonghis Khan.
Tom Baumgartner, mgr
studio web site: http://www.phvx.com/staging/studio.asp
copyright 2006 studioexpresso