The Virtual Queen Project:

2006-2007

vQp

vQp was put together as an idea following an online conversation with vocalist Matthew Harffy. We wanted to see if it was possible to record music "Remotely" - musicians from all over the world recording their own parts then e-mailing them to one another until a track was assembled.

To give the project an aim we decided to use Queen songs (we were both big Queen fans and had "Met" on the Queen message board) and then sell the tracks in order to raise money for the Mercury Phoenix Trust to be used for AIDS research.

Matthew's friend, Paul McClusky, was brought in on guitar. A work colleague of Matthew's, Paul had moved out to Washington DC and gave the vQp project a true international flavour. Paul and myself were to take it in turns mixing and producing the songs, with Matthew taking control of the web design.

Our first track was a version of Tie Your Mother Down - a decision made partly because we'd started work on a demo of it for HMV, therefore, with Steve Eastment's agreement, we had a drum track already recorded. This was to be my first go at mixing...

I took the helm again for Wishing Well and You Take My Breath Away, a piano ballad with piano supplied by Inma Villarrubia, a Spanish musician whose recording was brilliantly played, yet suffered from background noise as she couldn't record in an isolated environment. The solution? After much messing about with EQ, we came up with the idea of adding some record crackles at the beginning and end, fading out during the song, therefore giving it the sound of an old vinyl 45.

Paul mixed We Will Rock You and Feel Like Makin' Love and, at the end of 2007 we decided to call it a day. Work commitments all round were making it difficult to spend the time required on the project.

All in all, an interesting idea and one which gave me a lot of pleasure and some experience in mixing.

vQp Website