Episode One : The Art of Recording

Soundbreaking begins where a recording does––at the intersection of inspiration and execution. There stands the enigmatic figure of the record producer, the person charged with the critical task of both realizing an artist’s vision and capturing it for posterity. Profiling some of the most accomplished and revered producers in the recording industry, Episode One offers… Read More

Episode Two : Painting with Sound

“Painting with Sound” chronicles a watershed event in the history of music: the moment when the recording studio itself effectively became an instrument and gave rise to sounds that could never be reproduced live. Beginning with the advent of magnetic tape and multi-tracking technology, episode 2 charts the evolution of multi-track recording, and reveals how… Read More

Episode Three : The Human Instrument

Celebrating the most powerful of all instruments––the human voice––the third episode of Soundbreaking surveys the range of ingredients that go into a perfect vocal track. Featuring rare studio footage of some the world’s most renowned vocalists––from blues divas to suave crooners to rock star screamers––the show considers the gamut of tricks and techniques that can… Read More

Episode Four : Going Electric

Tells the story of the most elemental force in recording–-electricity––and the musical revolution it sparked. Highlighting the way in which electricity has been harnessed and channeled to create new and never-before-heard sounds, Going Electric traces both the chain reaction unleashed by the invention of the electric guitar and the evolution of synthesized music. From Delta… Read More

Episode Five : Four on The Floor

If the vocal track is the heart of a song, the rhythm track––the beat––is its body. It is the sonic element that taps into the most primal part of us and makes us want to move. Four on The Floor breaks the beat down, and examines the endless experimentation that has taken place at its… Read More

Episode Six : The World is Yours

The sixth episode of Soundbreaking looks at a musical revolution that was not only inspired by recording but born from its history: the art of sampling––a kind of musical equivalent of Adam’s rib.  Beginning with the pioneers of hip hop (Afrika Bambaataa, Chuck D, Rick Rubin), the episode tracks the way in which the practice… Read More

Episode Seven : Sound and Vision

Chronicling the era in which MTV forged an indelible and inextricable link between recorded music and the newly emergent music video, Sound and Vision considers what it means to see music as well as hear it. Tracking the music video from MTV to the internet, Sound and Vision tells the story of how a one-time… Read More

Episode Eight : I Am My Music

Shifts the focus away from the creation of music to the experience of listening to it, and to the formats that have shaped and ultimately defined that experience. From vinyl, cassette tape, CD, and MP3, each generation has had a piece of musical media to call its own– a way of listening that determines not… Read More