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Engineer (Now And Zen)

Born on November 12, 1956, Martin grew up in a musical environment. His mother was a classical singer, a gifted performer, broadcaster and teacher. He began piano lessons at age five, started playing French Horn at eleven, and was soon playing in youth orchestras and attending summer schools, acquiring a taste for performing and collaborating with others. His college degree (BA Hons) was in music. His working life has been spent exclusively in music-related activity. Joined The Enid in 1979, adding his keyboard, bass guitar and writing skills to a cult group that toured the UK, released numerous albums, and (very rare back then) had their own recording studio, which was a financial lifeline when in between record deals. Martin began to engineer and play sessions during this time. Worked for Soundcraft (UK-based manufacturers of good mixers and rather agricultural tape machines), gaining further technical knowledge, progressing to final testing the company's range of mixing consoles, while simultaneously writing and recording an album with two ex-Enid musicians (originally released on vinyl in 1984, then remixed and updated for CD release some years later). Worked at Utopia Studios, a major multi-studio complex (which also had a disc-cutting room), as both engineer and technician. Was headhunted by Swanyard Studios, another multi-studio venture (at the time of inception when it was only a building site), and got hugely involved in building two notable SSL studios and a Midi Suite. Between 1985-91 Martin became both Chief Engineer and Technical Director.

In 1991, Martin went freelance and designed and built his own studio - Sonic Innovation. Its first project renewed his relationship with producer Simon Emmerson, for whom he had engineered a Working Week album at Swanyard. This soon evolved into a regular co-writing and production partnership. In 1995 they took a recording setup, including Martin's SADiE hard disk system, to the Real World site to make the recordings that became the first Afro Celt Sound System (ACSS) album Volume 1 - Sound Magic. 1997-2000: Martin settled into his role of co-writer, keyboard player and co-producer-recordist (in the studio) and front-of-house sound (on live appearances), got a Grammy nomination for ACSS : Volume 2 - Release, and toured a lot in the USA, Canada, Europe and Australia. Co-productions with Simon include Maryam Mursal's The Journey and Waaberi, an album recorded in Madagascar for the group Tarika, and album tracks for Baaba Maal, Alan Stivelli and Carlos Nunez. On his own: lots of of CD mastering, writing and recording, including producer-engineering some classical chamber music albums for labels including Meridian. Notable film syncs were music cues for Live Flesh (Almodovar feature) and Stigmata (feature). 2001 saw the completion and delivery of ACSS : Volume 3 - Further In Time, a collaboration with Simon Webb on music for Shakespeare's A Winters Tale (at the Royal National Theatre (RNT) - dir. Nicholas Hytner), and more ACSS international touring. In 2002 a second Grammy nomination was received, for Further In Time, and Martin designed and built a 5.1 band studio for ACSS, (Sonic Innovation 2). Its first output was the adaptation and delivery of two music cues for Gangs of New York (feature), followed by the completion and delivery of the ACSS 4th CD Seed. 2003: Collaborating with Simon Webb again, on music for Shakespeare's Henry 5th (RNT - a landmark production, directed by Nicholas Hytner). ACSS-wise: 5.1 mixing and preparation of POD (with bonus DVD), and touring in the USA, Canada and Europe. 2004 - Research, writing, recording an initial pitch for the score to Hotel Rwanda (feature), and finally writing and delivering a 5.1 package of 12 cues for it (Hotel Rwanda). Martin also wrote, recorded and mixed the underscore for Mr Firecul (Short Film), 5.1 mixed (for Pioneer Productions) a Fratelli Bros music package for 3 x 1-hour HDTV shows. 2005 - Completion and delivery of ACSS : Volume 5 - Anatomic, writing, recording and 5.1 mixing underscore to Bosta (Lebanese feature), recording and mixing Simon Webb's music packages for Love Letters of Casanova and ITV's "Avenue Of The Stars", and 5.1 mixing a track from THhe Coldcut of That Year. 2006: 5.1 mixing a further HDTV Naked Science series (Neill MacColl's music package for 6 x 1-hour shows) and re-locating to the original Sonic Innovation studio. Started CD Mastering and Travelling 5.1 Work, and began the co-writing and production of a project with singer Dorothee Munyaneza. 2007: mixing, mastering and additional production on The Dhol Foundation's CD Drums and Roses, production and arrangement of a duet re-make of a Stevie Wonder track for use in the Theatrical Documentary Darfur Now.


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Rick's Cool Collectibles is a memorabilia mail order company serving collectors worldwide! Since 1979 the name Rick Barrett has been associated with quality collectibles including rare concert & event tickets and stubs, Led Zeppelin memorabilia, select music & sports memorabilia, stamps, coins, old postcards, and more!

This Month in
Led Zeppelin History

August xx, 1968 - Page, Plant, Jones and Bonham hold their first rehearsals in Gerrard Street, London
August xx, 1968 - Page, Grant and Chris Dreja go see Robert Plant perform at a Birmingham Teachers College. Page invites Plant to his Pangbourne house and offers him the vocalist position
August xx, 1969 - Peter Grant starts enforcing the 90/10 split in favor of the band
August 31, 1969 - The third US tour ends at the Texas International Festival in Dallas
August xx, 1970 - Zeppelin earn no less than $25,000 per show
August 17, 1970 - Page completes mixing of the Led Zeppelin III in Memphis
August 19, 1971 - The seventh North American tour opens in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
August xx, 1972 - Jimmy Page purchases Plumpton Manor in Sussex
August xx, 1973 - Jimmy starts arranging ideas for the next album
August xx, 1974 - Film maker Peter Clifton has the band re-enact scenes at Shepperton Studios
August 31, 1974 - John Paul Jones appears with David Gilmour and Steve Broughton as Roy Harper’s backing band for the night
August 04, 1975 - Robert Plant and his family are seriously injured as their car veers off the road on the island of Rhodes
August 08, 1975 - Rehearsal for Zeppelin’s Eleventh North American tour postponed after Robert is involved in a serious car accident
August xx, 1976 - Arrangements are made to show the upcoming Zep film in theaters
August xx, 1976 - Jimmy Page finishes mixing the soundtrack for the movie The Song Remains The Same
August 14, 1977 - Jimmy jams with Ron Wood at a charity golf tournament for underprivileged children
August xx, 1978 - Robert plays with Dr. Feelgood and Phil Carson in Ibiza, Spain while on holiday
August 11, 1979 - Led Zeppelin perform a second show at Knebworth due to overwhelming ticket demands
August xx, 1980 - Jimmy moves into his new Windsor home, which was purchased from Michael Caine
August 14, 2009 - It Might Get Loud opened in select theatres in NY, WA & CA.
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