Daytrotter is a website for the recording studio Horseshack, which hosts recording sessions with many popular and typically upcoming indie music acts, although it works with local bands in the Illinois area as well. The sessions can be compared to that of a radio station’s lounge recordings, where musicians passing through the town can record live in the studio. Due to their tendency to offer an eclectic sampling of music, and their production style (see Studio section below) the sessions have been compared to that of the legendary Peel Sessions. According to the Daytrotter website, they have served more than 21.5 million song downloads. Wolfgang’s Vault bought a majority stake in the company in 2008. The Horseshack, Rock Island, Illinois. Daytrotter Sessions are engineered by Mike Gentry, Patrick Stolley, Brad Kopplin, Brett Allen or Nick Krill.
The Daytrotter recordings are made with minimal mic’ing, through discrete preamps and with some limiting to the mixing console, where they are printed to 1/4” analog tape running at 15 inches per second (usually BASF 468). The analog master is later transferred to a computer and converted to the digital files you hear on the site.
There is no set formula or pattern to the recordings, no specific mic setup, etc. They are all live, no overdubs, straight to tape. What you hear is what happened in the room that day.
One important aspect to take note of… is with Daytrotter: You have to pay!
A couple other notable (and local) sites that are similar to Epitonic.com are:
COACH HOUSE SOUNDS
There are other sites that record live sessions, like Columbia College graduate Matt Baron’s Coach House Sounds…
The difference? Simple… Coach House Sounds are recorded in Baron’s coach house so it is bare-boned in sound yet ambitious. It also lacks access to video, streaming, free downloads, and is not open to public while bands record.
There is the indie music blog called Hear ya!
HearYa is an indie music blog based out of Chicago that gives indie music enthusiasts a destination to cut through the clutter when discovering new music. They are a community of fans that want to see the music they love reach the ears of new friends and survive. The readers thoughts and comments are always welcomed and encouraged. In addition to providing album reviews, South By Southwest coverage, and offering daily mp3 downloads, they also record live sessions at Shirk Music and Sound in downtown Chicago.
No matter what else is out there Epitonic and saki have done something innovative and brave. They teamed up, raised money through anonymous donations, called out to editors (myself included) and finally made the all-in-one Venue/Recording Studio/Record Store… a dream many have had but few have succeeded.