Paul's drums on "Mother Nature's Son" | Recording and musicology | Fab forum

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Paul's drums on "Mother Nature's Son"
6 March 2013
10.01pm
Funny Paper
America
Apple rooftop
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Joe's notes about the song's recording says:

Onto take 24 McCartney overdubbed timpani, another acoustic guitar part, and drums – the latter set up in the corridor outside the studio, to give a staccato effect.

I don't understand how setting up drums in a corridor outside the studio would give the drums a "staccato effect".  Not even sure what a "staccato effect" is, in relation to drums.

The way I'd describe the drums would be with the words "immediate" and "deadened" -- also describes the timpani, where the usual booming reverberation of timpani has been, apparently, consciously muffled.

Mundo paparazzi mi amore cicce verdi parasol.
6 March 2013
10.20pm
Ron Nasty
Floating downstream in the suburbs...
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Staccato means to create a disconnected sound. All of the instruments would sound one way because of the acoustics of the studio, while something recorded in the corridor would sound different, or disconnected, by the different set of acoustics the corridor would give. Ken Scott, in The Complete Beatles Recording Sessions: "Paul wanted an open effect on his drums [to give a bongos sound] and we ended up leaving the studio itself and putting the drums in the corridor, halfway down, with mikes at the far end. It wasn't carpeted then and it gave an interesting staccato effect."

"I only said we were bigger than Rod... and now there's all this!" Ron Nasty
6 March 2013
10.26pm
vonbontee
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I think "staccato" would be more properly applied to the playing of the drums, and the way the placement of them affected the sound of such playing, than the effect itself.

I like black music, disco music. I like the disco music that's out now - John Lennon, 1975
6 March 2013
10.35pm
Ron Nasty
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I believe the important detail is in Ken Scott's comment. It reveals that what they were looking to do was not to record the drums, because the drums were not miked but the opposite end of the corridor was, meaning that was being recorded was the sound of the drums bouncing around in what was, effectively, a "sound tunnel".

"I only said we were bigger than Rod... and now there's all this!" Ron Nasty
7 March 2013
12.36am
Funny Paper
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mja6758 said
I believe the important detail is in Ken Scott's comment. It reveals that what they were looking to do was not to record the drums, because the drums were not miked but the opposite end of the corridor was, meaning that was being recorded was the sound of the drums bouncing around in what was, effectively, a "sound tunnel".

The description you report makes me think more of creating an echo effect -- the opposite of what one hears on the song, which sounds more like the drums were inside a cramped and padded closet or something.

Mundo paparazzi mi amore cicce verdi parasol.
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