New R&B Artist Reveals Keys to Vinyls Comeback
His name is Nick Waterhouse, and odds are you may not have heard of him, but you may have heard his music. His song I Wanna Know was heard in an Acura commercial two years ago, and his song Some Place is currently being heard on a commercial for the FIFA 2014 video game.
If you can recall those commercials than you, like me, probably thought that music was from the late 50’s or early 60’s, and not 2012 or by a 26 year old in Los Angeles. But all that music is Nick Waterhouse’s, the sound, the recording method, and even the songs themselves are all his.
What is the most compelling about Waterhouse though is his perception of how the music should sound. You see while other artist are running to recording studios to lay down tracks electronically or on CD, Waterhouse made his first singles on 45′. Waterhouse knew vinyl would give his music the sound he wanted. But to help finish the effect Waterhouse decided to record at LA’s Distillery Studios, one a very few analog recording studios left, and someplace Waterhouse grew up around. To produce his signature sound Waterhouse has also modified his electric guitar, a Gibson SG, to give it a more authentic 50’s R&B sounds and complete the feel of his music.
In an interview with Seattle’s KEPX Waterhouse was quoted as saying “I come from a lineage of record people”, and “There is nothing like holding a record in your hands”. I think these quotes sum up Waterhouse’s love for vinyl and the new movement back to it, for the sound it can produce. This love has transferred into a passion for getting the sound just right, something he has managed to do well. For Waterhouse vinyl is about the experience that having a vinyl record can produce.
I need to add one more thing though. Listening to the sounds of Duffy, Adele, the late Amy Winehouse, or even some Cello Green it would be easy to throw Waterhouse into the retro-R&B movement. But Waterhouse doesn’t see himself as part of this movement, but more of a direct R&B artist with a lineage back to artist of the 50’s and earlier.
If you want to check out Waterhouse’s sound it’s available on iTunes, but you can also get it on
vinyl via Amazon or eBay, if you want to hear it as it should sound. His album is called Times All Gone on 33′, CD, or electronic formats. As for his singles on 45′, they’re out there but are considered collectors items, and get pretty pricey but no doubt worth it.
Also you may want to check out his KEPX interview: http://feeds.kexp.org/kexp/liveperformances