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JJP & Bob Ludwig on the Charlotte Sometimes session

May 31, 2009

Iconic producer/engineer Jack Joseph Puig and legendary mastering engineer Bob Ludwig recently took a few moments to talk to us about their latest release—the new Charlotte Sometimes album, which has been garnering rave reviews and radio play worldwide. Entertainment Weekly calls the album an “impressive debut with meditations on lost love, self-discovery, and angst…you’ll find yourself getting swept away.”


What, in your opinion, is unique about Charlotte Sometimes’ latest album, Waves and the Both of Us?

This project was a fusion of hip hop sensibilities and rock sensibilities. So the consideration I needed to make was how to properly fuse those two styles of music and production.

How was it using your own tools (The JJP Analog Legends) on your own production? How did you use each plugin?

I used the PuigChild on the vocal, and also used a PuigChild on a lot of the digital machine elements, which helped me fuse the soul of the digital sonics with the analog attitude that existed in the guitars, bass, and vocals.

What mixing issues did Waves plugins solve for you?

Charlotte has a hyper-sibilant vocal issue. I was able to use the Renaissance DeEsser to solve that problem.

Were there any special requirements when you sent it to Bob Ludwig for mastering?

The only requirement was for Bob to use the digital print as opposed to the analog print, primarily because I had used the L3 Ultramaximizer, which gave the record a fantastic presence and digital aggression.

What's it like collaborating with Bob?

It’s always fabulous working with Bob Ludwig. Bob and I have had a tremendous amount of hit records together. Bob's approach is actually not definable. He is a true artist and always has the ability to find the right balance in what makes a song come alive.


What were some of the challenges mastering Charlotte Sometimes?

Fortunately, the master mixes sounded awesome, so there were no serious challenges involved.

On "Kill A Man," I originally did two masterings on Jack Joseph's original mix, the second one involved pulling the vocal back -.5dB. And I used the Waves Linear Phase Equalizer to do that so it did not alter the sound of the rest of the mix. Jack Joseph ended up remixing the song again twice more, and I ended up bringing up the kick drum. That was consistent with his desire to have it be a hybrid hip-hop/rock record.

Were there any special requirements from Jack Joseph Puig?

Only to keep that hybrid hip-hop and rock vibe in mind.

Besides the singles, one of my favorite tracks on the album is "This Is Only". For me, I like the hybrid flamenco feeling Jack Joseph put into it. Charlotte Sometimes is a good artist. She is one of those singers who is instantly identifiable, lots of attitude!