CAS Quarterly

Spring 2024

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46 S P R I N G 2 0 2 4 I C A S Q U A R T E R L Y Lessons Learned the Hard Way Re-recording Mixer Gabriel Guy CAS I'd been in sound 15 years at one point, but I was new to being a re-recording mixer on larger films. So, in that phase of my career, I was still relatively new. On this one film, throughout the entire dub, those above me in the chain—picture editors, directors, etc.—kept wanting everything to be louder. Basically, b y C A S A s s o c i a t e S a m C a s a s every cut had to be the loudest thing. So, every music stinger had to be the loudest thing, every effect had to be the loudest— especially during the action scenes. Rather than play through the scene and see how it had an arc, we kept being told to push the music and effects to where it would just build and build and build. A lot of us on the sound crew started noticing and started pushing back a little bit. Saying things like, "Hey, before we do anymore notes, let's watch the reel and see where we're at." We started measuring SPL thinking maybe if we have a number, then we can say, "Hey, we're living over a hundred for a good chunk of time here … maybe we need to tone it down." It was something that we struggled with throughout the final mix. These days, we have unprecedented access to our sound heroes through podcasts, online forums, various social media apps, or even wonderful publications like the CAS Quarterly. There are countless opportunities to find out how people got their start in the industry, how they've found success, and perhaps tricks and techniques they employ that make us think, "Wow, that person is a genius!" But if you are like me, you've made a mistake or two in your lifetime. Rarely do those stories get highlighted, but in fact, making mistakes is perhaps the single best way we learn and grow. So, from the deep dark underbelly, these brave souls, plus myself, have graciously chosen to share some of their less-than-proud moments in hopes that you might avoid similar pitfalls. With this in mind, here are some lessons learned the hard way. Re-recording mixer Gabriel Guy CAS

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