Another Monday morning, and another recording. This time we were headed South from our Wiltshire studios. The destination was Grange Junior School in Gosport, Hampshire. With a journey time of around 2 hours it wasn’t too much of an early start. Fortunately a purveyor of fine foods for breakfast was found just near to the school (Costa) and so there was at least an opportunity for some breakfast before going in to set up.
On arrival at the school I went into the reception area and was greeted by the deputy head. When I said I was here to see Sarah Smith she simply said oh sorry she won’t be in until 9am can I help. I then explained that yes I was here to record and all I needed was to be shown where to set up. At this point the lady I was speaking to looked blank and said, “oh I don’t know anything about a recording”.
It then transpired I was in fact in the wrong school. Grange Infant School was next door to Grange Primary School (literally right next door). And as sheer coincidence would have it also had a member of staff called Sarah Smith. Fortunately I hadn’t unloaded anything other than a rucksack and the school was really no further from where I had parked. On presentation to the correct school I was then shown in by the caretaker and could start unloading.
Dealing with external noises
Just as I finished setting up, the caretaker announced that he was off to see the building contractors. It turns out that some trees right outside the school had been scheduled for felling that morning as the school was having some new buildings built.
“Will that be picked up by the recording?” I was asked. Sometimes I am tempted to say no, the microphones are very clever and only pick up singing not chainsaws….. Of course people are genuinely asking and don’t know the full capability of a professional recording setup and I do realise this. The answer however is always ‘If you can hear it, so can the microphones”.
Fortunately on this occasion the recording was finished by lunchtime and the contractors obviously found something else to during the morning. And so the recording session proceeded smoothly without competition from outside.
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