"Dear B. K." - Part 2

Sometimes I get a succession of letters about specific things. I like
those, because usually there is a need out there by some unfortunate
soul who has a certain piece of equipment that has a problem, and for
some reason they just can't find the owners' manual, or what's in it is
useless information. Such is the case with Joe B., who has a piece of
equipment just about like mine, who only needed some technical advice:

Dear B. K.,                                                                                                                     

How long have you had your
Teac RW-D250 CD Recorder? I've had mine for
two years and it has stopped dubbing CDs. I get a
"NO CD -- DA:D2
message". Both trays play fine though.

Has this happened to you?



I wrote:                                                                                                                        

Hi, Joe;                                                                                                                    

Yes, it has happened to me, but I found out that recorders of this type
will not record on CD-R's that are made for computer writers. You may
well already know this, but if not, you should be using
CD-R's that are
marked with the words
"Digital Audio" under the words "Compact Disc".

Discs marked with Digital Audio are made differently in that they are
denser in optical coating than computer discs, and therefore are
compatible with the specialized laser lens built into the recorder.

This is why they are a little more expensive than regular
CD-R's, and
the extra money you spend will assure that you will not have bought a
package of inferior discs.

I am enclosing a graphic of what you need to look for if you want
to burn in a recorder.

Hope it helps a little bit at least.  


B. K.

I musta missed something, because he then sent this:

Thanks B.K.,                                                                                                                

But you misunderstand. I have been using the
Teac successfully for three
years. And I use the correct CD Audio Discs. The machine suddenly
stopped working last week and gives me the error message instead, even
with the correct kind of CDs.


Hey, Joe!                                                                                                             

Oh, OK. I didn't think about that, sorry. I suspect that you are having
problems with the laser arrays (
I think that's what they're called). It
is a problem that generally happens after a long time, and usually due
to insufficient regular cleaning of the lens. Try a thorough cleaning
using a wet method for several runs, and see if that makes a difference.
Also try changing the
CD-R brands around some. Sometimes it helps to
change up a little. If none of that works, strongly consider replacing
the unit, because for what it would cost to replace the parts, you could
buy a brand new unit. Tell ya what, that's what I'm going to do if it
happens to me.

Hope that helps a little. You know how it is with the newer equipment.
They make it so that we can't service it ourselves, we have to send it
out. I have an old
Yamaha RX-15 rhythm programmer, and I've had it for
ten years. If and when it dies on me, it gets trashed. Same with my old
keyboard, a simple
Concertmate 1100. It makes a good base level sound
module, but it only costed
$300. I've had it for 5 years, I think I've
gotten my money's worth out of it by now. But it still works, I'll still
use it.

Let me know how it turns out, Joe.


B. K.  

Sometimes it's just not worth it to try and fix up the old grey mare, ya
know? It becomes more expensive to repair than to replace, much like a



This one is from a guy who visited my web site and made use of the
information. He has the exact same model as mine, and the problem was a
little more broad:

Dear B. K.                                                                                                            

Hi, Thanks for all the recording advice, However, I was wondering if you
still had your operating manual for the
Teac RW-D200, I am having lots
of difficulties operating this component, Since I don't have the manual,
can you help me-out ??? Thanx-in-advance ...



It was a little vague, so I needed to get to the root of his problem:

Hello, Ivan!

I will be glad to help. What I can do is scan the pages you need and
send you the files. But I need to know what help you need.

Detail it in an e-mail and send it to me. Please expect the returned
answer to take at least a few days, but I will try to answer you as much
as possible.


B. K.                                                                                                         


His reply:                                                                                                         

Dear B. K.                                                                                                       

Hi, Thanks for replying. I insert a disc in each drive and as I proceed
to record, I press the record button, but all I get is a flashing
and a flashing
"record"; as I press each button , nothing happens, and
I can't record for an unknown reason !! Perhaps you can fax me a copy of
the basic recording steps to copy from one cd to another, I would
greatly appreciate it. Once again, Thanks in advance ...



My solution was just as simple:                                                                         

Hello, Ivan!                                                                                                           

I see what your problem is. I had that problem when I first started
using the unit. What you must do after you get the flashing message is
hit the
"Play" button when you are ready to record. When you are done,
you must hit the
"Stop" button. If you are dubbing, you must hit both "Play"
buttons at once to begin the process.
In any event I will begin the process of scanning the pages of the
manual for you.

Good luck!                                                                                                         
B. K.                                                                            

It seems Ivan was simply in need of a small amount of technical advice,
which I was gladly able to give him. I haven't heard from him since,
which leads me to believe that he has succeeded.




Finally, this letter came to me from an artist I reviewed right here at
Forest Pro Music,
Gloria Maiolini aka Gloris. She had a dilemma which
involved the signing of a contract with a small recording label. I
always try to advise artists to thoroughly read any and all contracts
and agreements before they put their signatures on them. If you followed
one of my previous articles, or if you have seen my web site, you know
that I have a serious problem with major labels (
or minor labels that
wannabe major) and their business practices.

Her letter was much larger than this, so I condensed it a bit, but you
will get the idea:

Hey BK,                                                                                                      

I have been feeling very uneasy about something. You may be able to
help me. I signed an agreement with a company here (
Pittsburgh) to
contribute two songs to a CD sampler and maybe write songs for other
artist to demo. I was told that I would get a contract that would
outline in more detail the terms of our agreement. I came home happy
about it. I let my husband read it and he said there were some problems
and I should not have signed it. He said it is very vague and even
though I was told it was only for the two songs for the sampler they
could possibly have me jammed up because of the way it read. I have
been thinking about it and read it over and I realize he is right. I am
still waiting for this contract that is suppose to outline our
agreement in detail for us to negotiate. They want to go into
production on the songs I have which I have not agreed to yet. I told
them I was under the impression we were going to do new original songs.
I have not told them the copyrights and production rights for the
songs I have recorded belong to my music company
Gz Jamz Recordz, not me
as an artist. They signed with me the artist. I am hoping this makes a
difference. Let me know what you think. I have attached the agreement
for you to see.

Take Care and be blessed.                                                                                       

I looked the agreement over thoroughly, and it was in fact a form
agreement designed to somewhat entrap anyone who signed it into a form
"musical slavery". It contained language that was pretty specific
about being an exclusive artist and not being able to own any of the
material you as an artist may compose. Fortunately, I was able to find a
technical loophole that hopefully got her out of the danger zone, but I
still strongly urge anyone doing the same thing to

Next month I will get into the controversial topic of hip-hop music, and
try to dissect it a little. We need to figure out whether it's a good
thing or a bad thing, and how it is affecting our existence.

I'll get back, yo!


B. K.


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