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Ray Manzarek & The Copperhead! - Wed, 30 Mar 2011
Pictured with the new TELEFUNKEN CU-29 Copperhead mic in Studio Manzarek are (L-R) Door’s co-founder, songwriter and keyboardist Ray Manzarek and his son, recording artist/engineer Pablo Manzarek.
Santa Barbara, December, 2011 – Door’s co-founder Ray Manzarek is recording a new album, “Translucent Blues,” with slide guitar legend Roy Rogers, known for his work with John Lee Hooker. Manzarek has picked the TELEFUNKEN Elektroakustik CU-29 Copperhead, a brand-new microphone with a sonic fingerprint that breaks the tradition of classic mics of the past.
“This is a microphone built for the blues,” remarked Manzarek. “I come from the Southside of Chicago, and I want my new work to reflect the integrity of those roots. The Copperhead mic has an abundance of bottom end and a clarity that hides nothing. It’s a transparent mic for my “Translucent Blues.”
Pablo Manzarek added: “After recording my dad I can tell you that this is a hot mic. It superbly reproduced his voice, and I used a very minimal amount of EQ on it. I’m very impressed, but honestly I had no doubts -- it's Telefunken.”
In development for 18 months, the newest model in the acclaimed R-F-T line was designed by the company’s in-house engineering team, with outside consultation from some of the world’s top amplifier designers. The Copperhead is based around a unique circuit that features a New Old Stock (NOS) TELEFUNKEN vacuum tube, custom audio transformer and a fixed cardioid large diaphragm capsule.
In new instrumental re-interpretations of Doors’ classic hits, Manzarek reveals the blues, jazz and classical influences he incorporated in the band’s repertoire. He is also singing lyrics penned by such writers as the late Warren Zevon, (who sent Manzarek a stanza shortly before his death) to original beat poet Michael McClure and "Basketball Diaries" author Jim Carroll.
Musician, singer, producer, film director, author, co-founder and keyboardist of The Doors, Ray Manzarek has been in several groups since the Doors, including Nite City. He recorded a rock adaptation of Carl Orff's “Carmina Burana” with Philip Glass, produced and backed Echo & the Bunnymen and Los Angeles band X, has played with Iggy Pop, backed San Francisco poet Michael McClure's poetry readings and he has done improvisational composition with poet Michael C. Ford. His memoir, Light My Fire: My Life with The Doors, was published in 1998.
Roy Rogers, the 51-year-old slide guitar wizard and former Novato resident, and Manzarek, Chicago-bred keyboardist for the Doors, realized about four years ago their styles and mutual appreciation worked well on stage and in the studio, where they follow "Ballads Before the Rain" with the upcoming February release of "Translucent Blues."
Featuring a custom antique copper finish, the TELEFUNKEN CU-29 Copperhead has a silky, open top end, smooth midrange, and a detailed low end. The amplifier design and frequency response are tailored for vocals, however the microphone works exceptionally well on many signal sources including acoustic guitars, amps and percussion.
On the day the Copperhead CU-29 was delivered to Studio Manzarek, son Pablo immediately set up the mic and father Ray improvised the “Copperhead Blues” while photojournalist Mr. Bonzai photographed the session. You can hear the co-founder of the Doors in this exclusive 2:21 track at the new Copperhead website.