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GRAMMY Winners asked: Should Digital Music be Released on Vinyl?

If music is recorded digitally, should it be released on vinyl? If so, will it sound better? Get the scoop from award-winning audio recording engineers.

Michael Bishop and Thom Moore, GRAMMY Winners

Several years ago I got into quite an argument with my friends over what sounds better: digital music or vinyl records. As we discussed the pros and cons of each side of the debate, one friend asked me a very good question: What if the music is recorded digitally, but is released on vinyl?

My first thought was, well, of course that would be ridiculous. But then I remembered that Telarc Records had been doing that very thing for ages! So, I reached out to my friends, Michael Bishop and Thom Moore from Five/Four Productions. Michael and Thom had been major players in the digital recording revolution. In fact, Michael had been Telarc’s Chief Recording Engineer prior to founding Five/Four Productions with Thom and their partner, Robert Friedrich. Together they have 14 GRAMMY wins in audio engineering and production (17 when you add in Robert’s GRAMMY wins), making them the perfect duo to ask my friend’s inquiry: If music is recorded digitally, should it be released on vinyl? If so, will it sound better?

So, I packed up my cameras and headed off to Five/Four Productions’ headquarters in Shaker Heights, Ohio to find answers from two of the recording industry’s finest professionals. Check out the video above to find out what I learned: that not every decision in the music industry is based on “what’s best.”

About Michael Bishop
Recording Engineer and Producer Michael Bishop has received ten GRAMMY® Awards (2015, 2010, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2004, 2002 and 1997) including six for Best-Engineered Recording and two consecutive GRAMMY® Awards for Best Surround Album. He also received the Surround Music Award for Best Surround Mix – Orchestral. Michael’s production and sound effect recordings helped Peter Schickele, aka PDQ Bach, earn a record-setting four consecutive GRAMMY® Awards in the Best Comedy Album category. In 2009, Michael, with partners Thomas Moore and Robert Friedrich, co-founded Five/Four Productions Ltd., an independent full-service audio production company. Michael engineers, produces, and masters renowned recording projects, maintaining the high production values set in his prior twenty-year career at Telarc Records. With well over 1000 commercially released recordings to his credit, Michael has been privileged to have recorded many of the icons of popular music, classical, jazz, and blues in his career. Read Michael’s full bio here.

About Thom Moore
Four-time GRAMMY® Award-winning Producer and Recording Editor, Thomas C. Moore is a founding member and President of Five/Four Productions, Ltd.. Five/Four Productions is a full service independent audio production company that uses the latest technology and proprietary processes to create the world’s most acclaimed recordings. Before co-founding Five/Four Productions, Moore served as Producer/Sr. Recording Editor for the world renowned Telarc International in Cleveland, Ohio. Moore started his career in the audio production world as a part-time recording editor, and quickly incorporated his expertise as a performing musician to become one of the most highly sought out Recording Producer and Editor. Read Thom’s full bio here.

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