CD Mastering Services at Vestman Mastering

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  Client Response  

"I've used Vestman Mastering for years and have always been impressed with John's audio capabilities. When he introduced his 'Separation Mastering' technique, it just made sense. I can honestly say that the mixes grew wider and deeper, creating a more 'lush' stereo image. You gotta hear it for yourself to believe it, but once you do, you'll never go back to the 2-track."

-Matt Bordon - Producer, engineer, The Omen Room Studios

"We originally mastered the Kerry Getz album at a 'world class' mastering facility in Los Angeles, and the quality fell short of my expectations (even after a second attempt). I brought the project to you and now I couldn't be happier with the results. You exceeded my expectations... at half the price of the 'world class' facility."

-Martin Beal - Engineer for Narada Michael Walden, Carole King, Hanson, Howard Jones, etc.

"I quickly learned to trust his ears and opinions as accurate, tasteful, but not overbearing. I realized how much more can be done in mastering besides level and eq changes. The sounds I left with held up loud, quiet, in the car and in the next room."

-Otha Young: Juice Newton - "American Girl"

"Your sound that you got me was better than my last [album] which was mastered at [world famous mastering studio]. One of my tunes came on KBSR...after a 'Fourplay' tune. It sounded just as good, if not better! The bass...was just FAT and everything else was clear as a bell. You did an incredible job."

-Patrick Yandall, Jazz artist - "Of Two Cities" - San Diego, CA

"Everyone in the band is thrilled with the mastering job. You did an amazing job...the songs noticeably rock harder. Our drummer loves the drum sound and the vocals are much brighter. I will definitely be recommending you to anyone I know who needs to master their CD."

-John Gaenzler - Saccharine - New York

"The CD sounds great in everything we played it in Car, Home, Boom box, CD Walkman, and most important the Radio. Your web site sold me. We left a lot up to you, which is really unlike us."

-Jeff Boyer - Paint Box - Philadelphia, PA

"You've done a great job overall and everyone is very pleased. I'll be in touch again soon as we've just begun another album."

- Andrew Marlow - Moontracks Music Publishing - Northamptonshire, England

"I like working with John because he hears details in the mix, and simply makes everything sound better."

-Jerry Swallow - Guitarist on EMI, Electra, A&M records, Tanya Tucker on MCA, Olivia Newton-John, Randy Meisner, etc.

"I've been trying for two days to come up with some way to express our appreciation and thanks. The CD is phenomenal. But it's also more than that. It's actually far beyond what we were expecting, and we were expecting quite a bit."

-David Eden - Cleveland, Ohio

"We sent out 4 demos and yours was the best. Yours had the most clarity of all. Yours also kept the original clarity despite the added loudness, which is something that the others lacked."

-Joseph Milano, Jr. - Peat Moss and the Fertilizers - West Islip, NY

"The disc sounds great... your pricing is competitive and your turnaround is impeccable. Your detailed notes, suggestions, and correspondence ensured that you had been paying attention to the album. Perhaps I've been underexposed, but I haven't encountered this elsewhere."

-Chris Lawhorn - Idols of the Marketplace - Indiana

"Our bass player, who is a seasoned veteran, was highly impressed with the mastering job. I was shocked to hear his enthusiasm. He says that this is by far the best mastering job he has experienced."

-Mark Waggener - Traverse City, Michigan

"John brought my music to life. I didn't realize the importance of mastering until he A/B'd the finished product with the original."

-John Stary - producer-engineer - I.E. Records

"We want to thank you for the killer job that you did. The toms that you mixed in for us sound great. People have been commenting how good the CD sounds."

-Pat Roche - Ballast - Greenwood, Indiana

"Thanks for your awesome work!"

-Kim - The Muffs (Warner Bros., Sympathy for the Record Industry)

"After reading [your articles], we applied [your suggestions] towards our project. [You] worked magic above and beyond the call of duty to make our CD sound it's best."

- Craig Smoot - Guitarist, Black Label - Huntsville, Alabama

"The [award-winning] Full Frequency album got a lot of praise for the whole production and mastering process. So again, as always, thanks for the great work you've done on Gonzo! releases."

-Robb Schiltz - Gonzo! Records - LA, CA

"The work you did on the new single brought it to life! Your ear is impeccable. That's why we keeping coming back."

-Daniel Marish - Crashdove - Las Vegas, NV

"Without you making us sound great years ago, I probably would have become disenchanted with the whole music thing. I know now how much apart of all those songs you really were. I can't imagine how many countless clients came into your studio sounding amature....and leaving sounding pro. Those hours spent in your studio had a deep influence on me that I can draw on as I venture into my own recording situation."
- Ken Balagna - The Light, Sedona, AZ

"The Barela CD was mastered using a new cutting-edge, state of the art process known as Separation Mastering. We are extremely happy and grateful to our Mastering Engineer John Vestman for his complete support, outstanding professionalism and overwhelming patience."
- Tony Barela - Barela, Orange County, CA

"I am more than pleased with your work and the way we communicated which each other to acheive the sound I was looking for.  The sound is better than I ever expected it to be and the Separation Mastering technique realy did the trick.
You proved to be helpful, kind, patient and a real pro, Mr. Goldenears. Thanks a million John, for doing an incredible job" 

-George Sanford Jackson - Vienna, Austria

"I know I speak for a lot of your clients past, present and future who could have gone to other places, but stayed with you for one reason. You produced consistently great product in a number of capacities. Your ability to adapt to the needs of the client in the moment was truly masterful.

I have no doubt that you can change the dynamics of a recording in the mastering process. I think you may bring something extra to the project that is God given. You have remarkable ears.

I have recited the story of my recording where while we were mixing, you were hearing something that was bugging you. You slowed down the tape and manually ran it until you found a John Mehler accidental tick, where he barely touched the rim on his snare with a stick. You heard this through heavy rhythm tracks, horns, percussion, lead vocals, and layers of background vocals. It takes a lot to amaze me. I was amazed that day while you spot erased it.

I also remember the first mastering of 'Gulf of Mexico.' Doug Sax [The Mastering Lab in LA] came into the studio and called that "the cleanest recording he had heard that year." Doug Sax! That was unsolicited. He wasn't even mastering that project. This recollection stands out because there were witnesses, and my credibility in the biz as a decision maker with my music was thereby significantly enhanced.

That led to more money for studio time, and eventually to Allegiance-EMI-Capitol. I was positioned to compete in Hollywood largely due to your singular brilliance.

Then there was the Brian Wayy-recording that a black producer and I brought to the Black Radio convention at Studio City. In a smokey expensive suite filled with some true industry heavies, we managed to slip that tape into the rotation. Immediately, the dancers jumped up to boogie and the business people flocked to us asking who, where, and rather poignantly, who produced in what studio. The quality of those recordings certainly outlasted the voice emulators!

John, there are many more anecdotes that would support what you have accomplished in the last 25 years. I think it is precisely the fact that you have recorded so much, and have such a great ear that make you a superior mastering engineer. It is your rare awareness of sound and process that lead me to think you might just be pushing the envelope in this field." -Bill Glass, Corpus Christi, Texas

Email response to Secrets of Miking

" [Your advice] about positive reinforcement when it comes to getting the most out of a vocal performance is 100% right on!" [We've felt bad vibes] when our engineer would express the opposite of what he really means (eg., "Fred, y'know that solo of yours really sucked...)"

Reply by JV:
There are people who use put-downs in a kidding way, and people who are just plain cranky. No matter how "fun" the person makes a put-down, it strikes a vulnerable place inside people and the people around them.

When requesting a different approach, I suggest having the whole band there for a quick game plan discussion so that everyone is on the same page. Then use the "donut" technique. Say something positive "I really appreciate the sound you get on tape for us..." "for this project, we want to take a new approach in giving feedback to the singer. We'd like to all agree to not use any put-downs or negative comments or negative words, even if it's jokingly." "I know this session is going to go great, and we're looking forward to hear the sound you get for us."

If he goofs, just smile, take the "joke" for what it is, and then simply add the positive phrase afterwards. It will add time to the talking-back and forth, but it will neutralize the negativity. No one switches this wording around overnight. It took me years, I mean years to get automatic with my language. Never reprimand yourself or others when a negative phrase is used, just follow it with a correction.

"We were so impressed with the quality of our recording after mastering. I don't think we realized what a difference it would make."

-Lynnae Hitchcock - Relish - Orange County, CA

"The sound quality is getting great reviews, thanks for a job well done. Our music is getting picked up daily by stations across the country."

-Mike Beloud - Rise - Montrose, CA

"My drummer and I had a great session with you wherein we basically remixed our entire 3-song demo from start to finish. We're thrilled with how the songs came out and owe it all to you. Thanks for doing such an incredible job. "

-Andy Barr - headParade - LA, CA

"Please cut the final master without any additional changes. It sounds great and we are very excited!"

-Michael Powers - Yellow Dog Records, Memphis, TN