The Freebird of Pro Audio

IGYClive Young tells a great story about Donald Fagen's "I.G.Y." from his 1982 solo effort The Nightfly.

Everyone does play “I.G.Y.” It’s become the “Freebird” of pro audio—visit a linecheck at a major concert venue or a speaker demo at AES or InfoComm, and those familiar strains will turn up sooner or later. It’s a well-recorded song, to be sure, which is why it’s always used to illustrate a system’s “tight low end” or “crystal-clear mids” or, to be honest, any other detail they want to point out.

However, the sheer pervasiveness of “I.G.Y.” within the pro audio community as the track that you use to tune or show off your PA is remarkable. The distant second place song is, of all things, “Pulp Culture” from Thomas Dolby’s obscure (but admittedly awesome) 1989 funk album, Aliens Ate My Buick.

Here's Donald Fagen's I.G.Y. so you can test your audio system.

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Wow - there is actually some high end audible in the song, and it has dynamic range!!!

Guess what features are typically missing from the compressed shite that gets fed to the masses these days.

Now, go find the CD, .wav or .flac file and hear it how Donald Fagen worked so hard for and wanted you to.

Quality over quantity.

February 4, 2012 @ 11:04 AM

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