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Dominic Miller, Sting's Guitarist and his Mackie d8b

  Dominic Miller with his Mackie D8B
 

Dominic Miller is a world-class musician in the truest sense of the phrase. In his 28 years playing the guitar he has studied and absorbed an eclectic range of musical influences that anyone listening to Sting's more recent albums will be familiar with.

After years mixing analog, he is currently enjoying the novelty of mixing his first digital solo album on his new Mackie d8b console from the comfort of his Thames-side apartment. "I've got a couple of months to chill out and do my own thing," he says, "then I'm recording again with Sting, with a new tour penciled in for next Spring."

The Mackie setup has allowed Dominic to transform his apartment into a recording studio in seven minutes. That is all it takes to unpack his gear and get ready to go - he's timed it! "It's quite a simple set up," he says. "An HHB CD burner, Lexicon reverb CM90 and Roland keyboard - that's it."

Born in Buenos Aires and raised in Argentina and Wisconsin, Dominic moved to London to study classical guitar at The Guildhall School of Music under Sabastio Tapajos before going on to prestigious Berkley College in Boston. Guitar icons Jimi Hendrix and Jeff Beck, and jazz influences took his playing down new roads before he ended up swinging his axe with heavy metal band King Swamp.

In New York in the late '80s, Dominic bought his all-time favorite session guitar - a Fender Stratocaster. He started doing session work and soon got a reputation as a studio "wizard" by being able to play anything. Among the many big names Dominic has worked for are Luciano Pavarotti, The Pretenders, Bob Clearmountain, Sheryl Crow, Peter Gabriel, Level 42 and Paul Young.

Dominic was introduced to producer Hugh Padgham on a session. Hugh immediately recruited him to play on Phil Collins' mega-seller album But Seriously. (It's Dominic who plays the nylon-strung guitar on Another Day in Paradise.) Then, in 1991, he auditioned for Sting and got the gig to play on Sting's Soul Cages. Ten Summoner's Tales followed, on which he co-wrote the emotive Shape of My Heart.

 

Dominic still enjoys the challenge of session work, more recently working with producer Steve Lipsom and on boy bands' hits. But, it is not only his obvious talents as a musician that have been recognized by the industry - he also has a song-writing deal with BMG Publishing writing for both unknown and established artists.

Dominic says: "I work better alone, rather than with engineers all over the place - that's why I wanted automation. The instrumental music I make is very intimate and my set-up has allowed me the freedom to make my music when and how I like."

He is very much of the "old school"in his approach, preferring the natural tempo of real instruments to the precision tempo of sequencers. However, he finds the digital console with its recall system invaluable for capturing the musical moment.

"The Mackie d8b automation is fantastic and the best of its kind,"Dominic claims. "The best thing about it is that it has put an end to the 'chase the demo syndrome,' where you've done your demo and you can never re-create it in the studio. With the DB8, if you have done your demo and love everything about it, you can recall it and fix any minor offending details."

 "I've found the transition from analog recording to digital very easy. I was quite daunted at first but I found the d8b actually did what I wanted it to do. In fact the console is easier to use than analog and I know Mackie is there online if ever I need any technical support."

Dominic Miller at his home studio    
 

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