Legendary producer and performer Peter Asher and pioneering bass player Carol Kaye were recognised for their vast contributions to the world of music at the 37th annual TEC Awards, which were held at the returning NAMM 2022 show in Anaheim, California.
The first in-person TEC Awards since 2020 also saw winners announced across 21 technical excellence and seven creative excellence categories, with comedian and musician Fred Armisen returning as host for the ceremony.
For only the second time in TEC history, three companies won two awards each in Outstanding Technical Achievement. They were Genelec (Loudspeaker Manager – GLM V4.0 in Production Essentials and FM Design in Studio Design Project); PreSonus (Sphere in Audio Education Technology and ATOM SQ in DJ Production Technology); and Universal Audio (UAFX Golden Reverberator in Musical Instrument Amplification and Effects and LUNA Recording System v1.1.8 in Workstation Technology).
Peter Asher, who was inducted and presented with the TEC Hall of Fame award, was recognised for his career in music, which began in the ‘60s as the other half of pop duo Peter & Gordon. After the pair split, he was named director of A&R at the Beatles’ Apple Records label, where he signed a then unknown James Taylor. He would subsequently go on to work with the likes of Cher, Bonnie Raitt, Linda Ronstadt, Ringo Starr, and many others, earning him three GRAMMY Awards.
“The 21st of January, 1964 was a Tuesday, and the first time I ever went into a real recording studio,” he explained when receiving the award. “I went into EMI studios on Abbey Road… By the end of that day, a few important things had happened. I decided I wanted to be a record producer because I saw what a producer could do, in terms of shaping the sounds…So I have to thank for this award, not only the TEC Committee, but NAMM as a whole. And all the brilliant people who attend NAMM, and what they give us – all the great technology, the amazing instruments, the incredible inventions which sonically flourish in the hands of brilliant engineers.”
After accepting the award, he performed a rendition of Peter & Gordon’s hit single A World Without Love.
Iconic bassist Carol Kaye was also honored with this year’s Les Paul Innovation Award. Throughout her career, she has been revered as one of the best and most sought after bassists in the business, having put her signature touch the records from The Beach Boys, Glen Campbell, Ritchie Valens, Simon and Garfunkel, Frank Sinatra, Neil Young and many more.
One of the night’s most poignant moments came from Sequential, the winner of the Musical Instrument Hardware award for its Prophet 5. In his acceptance speech, David Gibbons of Sequential/Oberheim paid tribute to the recent unexpected death of company founder Dave Smith: “Life is a series of wins and losses. And the world of MI spent a huge loss this week. Dave Smith, founder of Sequential, creator of the Prophet 5, passed away unexpectedly on Tuesday. He was more than just the founder, he was an innovator, a mentor, and friend. His passing broke our hearts. And in so many ways, his life’s work broke the mold for synthesizer design. The Prophet 5 is a recreation of a 40-year synth design. And many people say the appeal comes from how alive it sounds. Did you ever think that perhaps, inventors breed some of their own lifeforce into their best designs? If that’s the case, then Dave’s spirit lives on in his remarkable body of work.”
You can see all of this year’s TEC Awards winners in full below.
Congratulations to the 37th Annual TEC Award recipients:
Audio Apps & Hardware/Peripherals for Smartphones & Tablets
Shure - Wireless Workbench 6.14.1
Audio Education Technology
PreSonus Audio - Electronics Sphere
Computer Audio Hardware
Rupert Neve Designs - MBC: Dual Path A-D Converter & Limiter
DJ Production Technology (Hardware/Software)
PreSonus Audio Electronics - ATOM SQ
Austrian Audio - Hi-X65 Professional Open-Back Over-Ear Headphones
Large Format Console Technology
Neve - 8424
Audient - iD4 MKII
Microphones – Recording
TELEFUNKEN Elektroakustik - TF11 FET
Microphones - Sound Reinforcement
sE Electronics - V7 VE
Musical Instrument Amplification & Effects
Universal Audio - UAFX Golden Reverberator
Musical Instrument Hardware
Sequential - Prophet-5
Musical Instrument Software
EastWest Sounds - Hollywood Orchestra Opus Edition
Genelec - Loudspeaker Manager - GLM V4.0
Signal Processing Hardware
Rupert Neve Designs - 5254 Dual Diode Bridge Compressor
Signal Processing Software (Dynamics/EQ/Utilities)
iZotope - RX 8
Signal Processing Software (Effects)
FabFilter - Timeless 3
Small Format Console Technology
Solid State Logic - UF8 Advanced DAW Controller
Sound Reinforcement Loudspeakers
Meyer Sound - ULTRA-X20 Compact Wide Coverage Loudspeaker
EVE Audio - SC4070
Sennheiser - Evolution Wireless Digital
Workstation Technology/Recording Devices
Universal Audio - LUNA Recording System v1.1.8
Interactive Entertainment Sound Production
Assassin's Creed Valhalla, Ubisoft
Remote Production - Recording or Broadcast
The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, CBS
Record Production – Album
McCartney III, Paul McCartney, Capitol
Record Production - Single or Track
Lost Cause, Billie Eilish, Darkroom/Interscope
Television Sound Production
The Mandalorian, Season 2 – Disney+
Studio Design Project
Genelec Immersive Experience Center, Natick, MA FM Design
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