freelance classical musician scenario – the mystery studio gig

10 11 2008

koss-qz99-headphonesSometimes I get calls to play in a recording studio.  Sometimes it’s a symphony orchestra, music_stand1concert band, commercial jingles, and sometimes its a surprise awaiting me as I walk into the studio.  On one occasion, the large studio was completely empty except for a chair, music stand, headphones & a microphone.  I placed the headphones on my head & listened to the pre-recorded tracks.  A second pass was to try and fit my part to the existing tracks.  The third pass was the actual take, but sometimes the 1st run-through was secretly recorded too, allowing for additional material at hand in the editing process. I played both oboe & English horn on this session – overdubbed, of course.

The music was contemporary religious music. 
That being stated, here are some cuts from that day’s recording session.

Track 1

Track 2

Track 3



11 responses

11 11 2008
oboeinsight » Blog Archive » Should We Draw A Line?

[…] Mankin blogs about a job he was hired for. He makes it fairly clear that he didn’t adhere to the […]

12 11 2008

Alright, we get it… they don’t reflect your religious views!


14 11 2008

Hey, I listened and I think this reflects your religious views and I’m highly offended. HAHAHAHA! Ahem. Sorry.

I knew you play oboe, but I don’t remember that you also play English horn. I love these, even on my small laptop computer speakers. I can imagine how wonderful you must sound in person! –Q

21 11 2008

Hey! You sound great, but why is contemporary Christian music so terrible? I had a church gig for about a year (until they were very un-Christian about paying me what the contract we signed stipulated), and hated playing that stuff.

How “surprise” are the surprise recording sessions? Did you know in advance that you were going to be playing for this thing? Did you get music? I am curious!

21 11 2008


Thanks for visiting my blog! For the record, if you read the entry, I NEVER elude to there being anything wrong with contemporary Christian music. In fact – this is not Christian music – but rather Messianic Jewish music.

For this recording gig, I had no idea what I was playing ahead of time – just that I was to bring my oboe & English horn. It was completely a sight-reading gig – no music in advance. Actually, ALL of my recording engagements that I can recall have been this way. I think I got the call just a few days before this session.

I love your blog, BTW!


29 11 2008


Just to clarify: I wasn’t insinuating that you indicated contemporary religious music was bad, simply wondering personally, since it isn’t something I enjoy.

4 12 2008


I’m an ‘old school snob’ at heart – I want only to play music ranging from Bach to Stravinski, but the reality of freelance work is that i have played TONS of music I’d never listen to in a million years! 😉

BTW – my brother is a comic artist. His site is . He’s recently been featured in a few issues of Heavy Metal magazine. I really enjoy your work on your site!

My best,


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