30 Minutes with Steve Miller Page 4

0609_miller_web3John Meyer [of Meyer Sound] is a really good friend; he makes beautiful speakers. So I had him come in and set up my surround system in my studio. But when it came time to do the new Eagle mix, I said to Capitol, "Guys, I honestly don't know what I'm doing with this yet. I've got the system installed, but I really have a lot to learn." And I asked them, "Who's good?" They said, "We'll do a few tests for you and see what you think." So they got Ed Cherney. I heard the first stuff, and I went, "Geez, this sounds great. Let's go ahead!" And at the end, when I got Ed's final mix, I sat down in my studio and listened to it - and when it was done, I turned to my pals and said, "You know, I think this is the best that any music has ever sounded in this studio."

Did Ed send the mixes to you for your okay as he did them? Exactly. And then I would nitpick.

What kind of nits did you pick? Well, we had gotten Ed all the multitrack tapes. And I told him, "First, you have to listen to the original album" - because the multitracks had choruses, parts, and pieces that didn't make it to the final stereo mix. So Ed needed to go back to the album to make sure he was getting everything right. And he was brilliant, he really paid attention. But there were just a few things - maybe a synthesizer tone or a vocal blend that wasn't correct.

The mixes went back and forth between us a few times, and right down to the end, I was saying, "Look, there's just one more thing, and then this is gonna be perfect" - and I never say the word perfect. "But if you'll just fix this last little blend . . . it's over here ... I know it seems unimportant to everybody else, but it's really important to me ... I'd like to have it just right."

But Ed did a magnificent job. You know, people say to me, "Your records sound so good!" And I look at them and say, "You oughta hear what's on the tape." I'm always so careful about making good recordings; my Dad just drilled that into me.