JIM ANDERSON: The Educated Ear

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Robert Baird writes: Tune those young ears, Mr. Anderson! After a 30-year career in audio engineering that's seen his name appear in the credits of over 1700 albums, Jim Anderson, who won the 2013 Grammy for Best Surround Sound Album, for his remastering of Patricia Barber's Modern Cool, thinks education is the key to stemming the tide of degraded sound that threatens to swallow the recorded-music industry. Anderson, who's taught for a decade in New York University's Clive Davis Department of Recorded Music, starts his students early. "In ear-training class, I try to get the students to hear and recognize and create a vocabulary, and articulate that vocabulary to describe what they are hearing. I make them listen to full-range, high-resolution stuff as much as possible. I take one of Patti's recordings, 24[-bit]/96[kHz] and I dump it down to 44.1[kHz] and then I take it down to MP3. I play them the 44.1. Then I'll play them the [MP3], and I don't ....

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