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Chatting with HWY89 Recording Engineer: Mark Wait

Mark Wait is the audio engineer for our live music performance program, Highway 89; and the chief recording engineer for BYU Radio Services. He’s also the tech geek on our cubicle block, a lover of lime green (see the headphones in the photo below) and the best friend you can have in an airwave crisis.

One of Mark’s greatest talents is making audio jargon sound like sensible speech. In fact that’s why I asked Steven Kapp Perry to chat with him here—so that we could share Mark’s knowledge with those interested in radio and recordings and (for you rabid HWY89 fans) a bit of behind-the-scenes commentary on our studios and the show. 

Happy listening!

Jackie Tateishi, producer of “Highway 89,” on BYU Radio

PHOTOS:  1) Mark and Jackie   2) Mark with musicians from the Taiwan Folk Music Ensemble. This was the day he got to record lots of erhus, pipas and bird whistles. He records anywhere from 300 - 600 musicians a year for HWY89.

AUDIO CLIPS

How sound works: Balancing reflectivity and absorption in studio construction

Convolution reverb: "I can put you in the cockpit of a 747"

No retakes: The LIVE nature of HWY89  (Warning: This audio includes NASCAR references)

Hard-core tech talk: Mark lists the studio mics by name and how they are used on the show 

2 microphones + 2 speakers + 2 ears = A perfect world  (Hey, a sound engineer can dream, can’t he?)

Confessions of a recovering audiophile: "I'd rather have a car than an amplifier"

Bonus material: A peek into the general plot of most of Mark's nightmares

PHOTOS:  1) Germany 1993 - Mark sets mic to record an organ performance in a cathedral  2) BYU Broadcasting 2013 - Mark sets a guitar mic before a HWY89 taping

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