CRAS Students Shine During NBA Suns Game

music production collegeConservatory of Recording Arts & Sciences Students Recently Had the Opportunity to Practice Mixing Live Audio & Video Feeds from FOX SPORTS ARIZONA in the School’s 42-ft. Remote-Production Mobile Broadcast Trailer During a Phoenix Suns Home Game

From pit row at NASCAR races to the diamond at Major League Baseball games to the court at NBA games, Conservatory of Recording Arts & Sciences (CRAS; www.cras.edu) students continue to have top-shelf opportunities to learn from the very best audio engineers and producers in the industry while on-site in real time.

Most recently, 12 CRAS students had the chance to practice mixing live audio and video feeds from FOX SPORTS ARIZONA in the school’s 42-ft. remote-production mobile broadcast trailer during a recent Phoenix Suns NBA home game versus the Los Angeles Clippers at Talking Stick Resort Arena.

“Training during a live professional sporting event such as NBA game is the chance of a lifetime for the next crop of professional audio engineers,” said Robert Brock, CRAS Director of Education. “The complexity, speed, and accuracy required for such a live broadcast was an eye opener for them. Dan Siekmann, Phoenix Suns V.P. of Broadcasting, was our initial point of contact and also toured our mobile broadcast unit. We are very grateful for his help in allowing our students this tremendous opportunity.”

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Sports Broadcast Hall of Famer Fred Aldous Instructs CRAS Students During Live NASCAR Phoenix Race

cras nascar

DPA Mic.

Three CRAS Teams, Each Comprised of 10-12 Broadcast Engineering Students Apiece, Trained During the Three Days FOX SPORTS Broadcasted the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series at ISM Raceway in Avondale, Ariz.

Avondale, Ariz., March 22, 2018 – When he isn’t mixing the Super Bowl, Fred Aldous shares his insights and methodology with the next generation of pro audio engineers.

Conservatory of Recording Arts & Sciences (CRAS; www.cras.edu) students recently had the opportunity to practice mixing live audio and video feeds from FOX SPORTS in the school’s 42-ft. remote-production mobile broadcast trailer with Aldous, a Sports Broadcast Hall of Fame inductee, during the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at ISM Raceway in Avondale, Ariz. from March 9-11.

“The exposure that the students get out of a large sporting event like NASCAR is an eye opener that has a lifelong effect…most are not aware of the complexity of live sporting event,” explained Aldous, an audio consultant for FOX Sports. “For the most part, they are overwhelmed at first. But once we start to dissect what they are listening to and how to approach it, they start to understand what is going on. Most everyone is amazed at the number of people it takes to put a production together and the amount of time and equipment it takes.”

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CRAS Helps Fulfill Part of Local Arizona High School Student’s Singing Career Dream

Gilbert, Ariz., April 5, 2018 – Alea Davis has dreamed of recording her music one day. She just never thought it would happen while she was still in high school.

The Conservatory of Recording Arts & Sciences (CRAS; www.cras.edu), the premier institution for audio engineering education, is proud to announce that 17-year-old Gilbert, Ariz. high school student Alea Davis is CRAS’ latest BE HEARD! contest winner. As a result, she recently had the opportunity to participate in a recording session of her own music with industry professionals in one of CRAS’ world class studios.

“I have loved music since I could remember,” said Davis, who is a senior at American Leadership Academy in North Gilbert, Ariz. “I have been creating music since I was 10. I make music to feel something and to put emotions out to the world for others to relate to. When I hear others sing my songs it’s amazing to think my words and creations can have a real effect on other people in the world. I am so excited to have been able to record in CRAS’ studio with such amazing people. My vision has been brought to life! The CRAS people in the studio that I worked with were unbelievable.”

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How to Break Into the Video Game Industry? Listen Up

video game industryIt’s incredible, isn’t it? Dim light, controller in hand, headset on, superfast internet, stunning visuals, realistic motions, and the sound… the INCREDIBLE sound that sinks you right into the role of the character that you’re maneuvering through the game’s map. It’s the edge of your seat excitement that pulses through you and lets you really become part of the game!

Very few people truly reach the depth of game-play as “real” gamers. Gamers have a HUGE appreciation for every aspect of the all-enthralling game. Gamers spend tons of time, and money, researching controllers, consoles, video cards, and televisions/monitors. Even so, most “real” gamers do not grasp the depth of what goes into the game that they enjoy. Game developers spend Hollywood budgets on the visual aspect of their games, to create life-like environments that gamers get sucked into. Developers spend months, if not years, developing the game’s story line, in hopes of creating a storyline that will bleed into the next game. Developers work with manufacturers to develop technologies that allow for lightening fast processing, creating fluid movement of characters and environments. All that said, very few gamers take into consideration the depth of the AUDIO in the game they’re playing. Some don’t even consider that the life-like sounds, or newly imagined sounds, are meticulously placed in to the game to enhance the gamer’s experience.

Video Game Audio is a CRITICAL part of any video game. Seriously… When was the last time you played a video game with the sound OFF? Video game developers, with their dedicated Audio Departments, utilize fantastic technologies, like Wwise, to integrate audio into their games. These Audio Professionals use techniques found in Recording Studios, Broadcast Centers, Live Sound Venues, and Post Production houses, trying to create, and deliver, sounds that are captivating and that will keep the gamer playing!

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CRAS Upgrades Hardware & Software in Two Studios

Cras music production trade schoolsIn preparation for its inclusion of Dolby Atmos as part of its curriculum, The Conservatory of Recording Arts & Sciences (CRAS), the premier institution for audio engineering education, is proud to announce it has retrofitted two studios in both its Tempe and Gilbert, Ariz. campuses with numerous hardware and software upgrades in time for its most recent crop of students.

“As studio production continues to evolve, keeping up with the latest trends and new technologies, such as Dolby Atmos, is vital so our students are not just keeping up with the industry, but are many times ahead of the curve,” explained Robert Brock, CRAS Director of Education. “We are pleased to offer our students the very latest industry innovations to invigorate and add to their skill sets so that they are properly prepared for their internships and careers once they graduate.”

Dolby Atmos transports you from the ordinary into the extraordinary with breathtaking, moving audio that flows all around you, even overhead. With Dolby Atmos, listeners are fully immersed in the action.

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How to Break into the Music Production Industry

music production industryFrom Cardi B to the Foo Fighters, to Jay Z to Justin Timberlake, listeners, like YOU, around the world spend many hours focusing on every sound, every nuance of their recordings. These recordings have a certain magic to them that is hard to describe, and some people spend their lives trying to find that “magic” on producing their own recordings. Some people invest their money into audio gear that they see in magazines or in online tutorials, and still have the hardest time finding that “magic.” See, the truth is… it takes more than gear to make your productions take on the same kind of “magic”as those records that have inspired YOU to hone your craft.

While the Music Industry seems to be the most visually enticing aspect (see what I did there?) of this world, the same science that it takes to record a vocal or create a beat is the SAME SCIENCE that it takes to make sound effects for Video Games, or Broadcast the Indy 500, or run sound for Bruno Mars’ concerts, to adding dialog to a Movie scene.

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Conservatory of Recording Arts & Sciences Grads Represent at 60th Annual Grammy Awards

60th grammy awardsIn Total, 28 CRAS Graduates Worked on 26 Grammy-Nominated Albums & Songs Across 28 Categories
The Conservatory of Recording Arts & Sciences (CRAS; www.cras.edu), the premier institution for audio engineering education, is proud to announce that graduate Darrell Thorp has been nominated for a 2018 Grammy Award for Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical for his work on Roger Waters’ album “Is This The Life We Really Want”. In addition, 28 CRAS graduates worked on 26 Grammy-nominated albums and songs across 28 categories. The 60 Annual Grammy Awards show is scheduled for Sunday, Jan. 28 at Madison Square Garden in New York City.

“Year after year, CRAS graduates are well represented during the Grammy Awards, and this year’s 60th annual event is no different,” said Kirt Hamm, CRAS administrator. “We are very proud of each and every one of our graduates. All of our nominated-graduates, as well as all of our graduates that are living their dream in this business are fine examples of where hard work and dedication can take you.”
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CRAS Features Leading Audio Engineering Education Curriculum at 2018 Winter NAMM

music production collegeThe Conservatory of Recording Arts & Sciences (CRAS; www.cras.edu), the premier institution for audio engineering education, will be featuring its leading audio engineering education curriculum during Winter NAMM 2018, held from Jan. 25 – 28 in Anaheim, Calif. at the Anaheim Convention Center, booth # 1340. 15 CRAS grads will also participate in AES@NAMM 2018’s “AES@NAMM Pro Sound Symposium: Live & Studio” during the convention.

“There are incredible opportunities in audio engineering out there, and we are dedicated in helping our students learn to harness their craft here at CRAS,” said Kirt Hamm, CRAS administrator. “For this reason, we are exhibiting at Winter NAMM 2018. We want the leaders in the professional audio industry to learn more about us, and for us to talk with those who seek top tier intern candidates for their studios and businesses. We also want to speak with those who are looking to get started in the business so they can see what we have to offer and how successful our grads have been.”

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Future CRAS Students & Pro Engineers Begin Learning the Trade Early

music production schoolsYou are never too young to begin learning, and a proper head start is ideal for students to learn their future trade. As such, the Conservatory of Recording Arts & Sciences (CRAS; www.cras.edu), the premier institution for audio engineering education, and local Arizona high schools have formed partnerships to help educate and energize the industry’s next generation of professional audio engineers.

“We have begun forging relationships with local high schools in an effort to help the next generation of audio engineers realize and get started upon their passion early and take the steps necessary to get the most out of their high school experience,” explained Kirt Hamm, CRAS administrator. “As both CRAS and these forward-thinking high school instructors believe in a ‘real world education’, it was ideal that we strike this accord. These terrific high school programs provide excellent preparation to enter our realm of education, propelling and preparing students for employment into the five disciplines within the audio recording and production industry.”

Phoenix, Ariz.’s Arcadia High School Creative Musical Arts & Sciences Program has been in existence for nine years, according to Richard Maxwell, who created the program and has been with the high school for 18 years. “Previously to creating the program while I was running the bands and orchestras at the school I was also developing what would become this program over all those years. From a technology standpoint, we focus a lot in studio on Pro Tools. Live sound is also a big part of what we do that is always contingent on what we have available in terms of gear and, more importantly, since it’s a school budget. That said, the real thrust of the program is the students’ creative process, so they are creating all of their own material in pretty much any style they want on pretty much any instrument they want and the idea is getting that music to an audience.”  Maxwell explained that it initially didn’t really seem like that big of a deal. “But as I look back on it now, the notion of allowing students the opportunity to explore their own musical interests legitimately was something that was missing. The students really get into the idea of all the opportunities that they have available to them. “It does take a considerable amount of student self-discipline and real interest in pushing their own creative process.”

According to Maxwell, many of his students have gone on to CRAS. “I’m always humbled that they want to credit anything they did with me before they got to CRAS. I am certainly glad at least to be a small part of their journey and I have great affinity for CRAS. Not just because of what they do, obviously CRAS’ credentials speak for themselves, but more selfishly because when I was trying to establish my program the endorsement of so many people at the Conservatory really made a difference in terms of legitimizing what was possible for us. I am incredibly grateful to them.”

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Why Modern Music Production Tools of the Recording Industry Matter?

music production toolsHow many videos have you seen of Artists in the Recording Studio? Ever been to a concert and stared at the person that is obviously controlling all of the sound? Ever rationalized that there are movies with dinosaur sounds in them, but there are no dinosaurs on Earth to record? Alien spaceships in video games always have their own, sound, too, right? In answering these questions, you’re probably recognizing that you might be cut from the cloth of what makes up an Audio Engineer!

Being an Audio Engineer is SO MUCH BIGGER than just being the “science guy” in a Recording Studio. In EVERY sound that YOU hear, somebody was responsible for getting that sound to the masses. More so, before that sound is available to the consumer, some Engineer captured the sound, manipulated the sound, and delivered the sound on some format: music download, movie, video game, television broadcast, concert sound, albums, etc. ANYWHERE YOU HEAR SOUND, other than the sounds of Nature, an Audio Engineer was at the helm!

For people that are excited about leaping into the field of Audio Engineering, there is a vast world of opportunity! Many aspire to be in Recording Studios working with Artists and Producers, but, the truth is, Artists and Producers exist outside of the confines of the studio, as well. Regardless of the occasion, or location, these Artists and Producers demand to stay focused on their “art,” and require a “technical artist” to provide for them the means of getting their “sound” out!

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