I was recently interviewed by a local magazine about what it’s like to run a recording studio. They asked a lot of the common questions you get, but one of them surprised me a bit.
It did not surprise me because it was an uncommon question. It is one I get asked all the time. But it is one I never really knew the answer to exactly, but this time I suddenly did. This time, I answered without thinking and the answer surprised me as much as it did the interviewer.
The question was: “what’s the most important piece of equipment in your recording studio?”
In the past I always answered with some actual piece of recording equipment. The answer actually varied, because I didn’t really know which was the most important one. Most of them are vital. Without them my recording studio would just be an apartment. Really, I didn’t so much care what the answer was. I was kind of hated that question anyway.
This time, I answered: “our coffee machine.” That surprised me.
Maybe it was fresh on my mind, because we had actually just gotten a new one, after bunch of research. Seriously, I researched for weeks, mostly on a site called Coffee Sultan, which has a bunch of reviews of various different espresso machines and coffee makers. I want to make sure I got the absolute right one for my needs.
I ended up buying a fairly expensive espresso machine from Cuisinart. I learned later that it wasn’t even that expensive compared to some of the other espresso machines on the market, but I thought it was a lot to pay for something that just makes coffee. But is it really?
Without access to coffee, most albums I’ve recorded would never have been recorded. All of the artists would have never stuck around. They do nothing without coffee.
None of the techs would have stuck around either. They do even less without coffee. Sometimes I think they would stop breathing if they didn’t have a cup of coffee to fuel them.
That is why I was happy to spend so much money on an espresso machine. I knew it would get a lot of use and I knew it would keep my business going. It’s really the number one way to get audio recorded.
And I suppose that is exactly why I gave the answer to that interviewer that I did. Since I’d been thinking about it so much, I realized that you could take away every other piece of equipment and you could still somehow make a record. Some of the equipment is pretty important and not having it would make it very difficult to get a record made, but you could still do it.
But if you take away the access to coffee? I don’t think any records are getting made. Coffee fuels this business.
Coffee fuels the world. Any building you go into, any office you go into, any school you go into, anywhere you go during your day, people are drinking coffee. You find very few who don’t. And the ones who don’t, they drink something else, like tea or some other drink with caffeine. Energy drinks are huge these days.
Whatever their drink, the point is people use some kind of drink that stimulates them to get themselves through the day. Or to get them started into the day. Those drinks are what run society.
I sometimes wonder what would happen if all coffee disappeared. With the world cease to function? I think it just might. People are so addicted to their coffee that I don’t think they could do anything without it anymore.
Imagine if coffee and cell phones disappeared on the same day. That would be more disastrous than a nuclear war, I think. The world would end faster anyway.