Stuart "Dinky" Dawson
Innovator and Visionary in the field of sound, Dinky Dawson’s genius has contributed to the success of many of the most prominent artists in the music industry.
Born in Worksop, Nottinghamshire, England, Dawson’s life has been dedicated to music and his accomplishments in the field of live rock and roll are legendary. As a youth, he participated as a singer in operas and musical offerings in amateur groups, and, when the phenomenon of rock and roll affected British teens, Dawson became a Northern Soul disk jockey spinning records in clubs throughout England and Germany. Realizing the importance of technical production in this new music, he modified the band’s equipment and became Fleetwood Mac ’s tour manager and sound engineer for their European and American tours, concerts, radio and TV shows. He designed, maintained and operated the Mac’s sound system, one of the first sophisticated setups to be used consistently by a touring band and was the first English live engineer to mix from the audience. He workedwith them in the studio as a sound consultant for their albums English Rose, Then play on, Kiln House, and Chicago. Simultaneously, Dawson worked with Charlie Watkins, Watkins Electric Music (WEM) London England, on design and operation of WEM equipment, which was used by all British groups of the sixties era (e.g., Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, Rod Stewart, Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix).
He emigrated to America as sound engineer for The Byrds and designed, maintained and operated their sound system. He continued working in the studio on their Byrdmaniax and Farther Along albums.
In the early seventies, he founded Dawson Sound Company based on a revolutionary acoustic suspension sound system, the first of its kind. Dawson Sound was the sound reinforcement company of the seventies, with Dawson’s technical expertise and talent evident on tours with the Kinks, Joan Baez, Mahavishnu Orchestra, Jeff Beck, Linda Ronstadt, Joni Mitchell, J. Giles Band, Warren Zevon, Orleans and Ambrosia, among others. It was the first sound company to tour the USSR on State Department sponsored appearances with B.B. King. His legendary live mixing capabilities can be heard on numerous live albums, including Mahavishnu Orchestra’s Between Nothingness and Eternity, Lou Reed’s Rock and Roll Animal, and Joan Baez From Every Stage, and J. Geils Band Live. Steely Dan was so taken by his work that Becker and Fagan released a single, Bodhisattava, which was mastered from a cassette made by Dawson at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium. During this time, he continued his studio work as sound consultant on Lou Reed’s Berlin, Steely Dan’s Katy Lied, Royal Scam, Aja and Greatest Hits.
During the eighties, Dawson installed sound systems in clubs, such as the Paradise, Nick’s Comedy Stop and the Channel (where he was also the Production Coordinator) in Boston, and was the sound contractor for the South Shore Music Circus in Cohasset, Massachusetts, working with artists such as Liberace, Carol Channing, Johnny Mathis, Burt Bacharach, Bill Crosby, and many more. He also installed audio systems at Harvard University, Bridgewater State College, and Ansche Chesed Temple. His tours included the Mamas and Papas and Rick James, and he also worked on several multi-media productions with dancer/teacher Sharron Weiner. As production consultant/sound engineer for New Kids on the Block, Inner Circle, Chris Whitely and Ke’, he continued touring into the nineties. Additionally, he worked as Production Coordinator and Producer at MDI studios, Cedarville, MA. He produced and engineered the reggae/soka group Noddaclu’s album and produced the Mulligans. Dawson has been guest lecturer at Berkelee College of Music, Boston, MA, and also writes for Mix Magazine and Musician Magazine. In 1998 Billboard books printed "Life On The Road" The incredible Rock 'n' Roll Adventures of Dinky Dawson wrote by Dinky Dawson & Carter Alan published by Watson-Guptill. 2000 RYKO-Disc released "Fleetwood Mac Shrine 69" the first of live shows recorded from the mixing console engineered by Dinky Dawson. 2001 found Dinky producing Matter Of Time with Lisa Jason. In 2002 spiritual adventures took center stage Kingdom Rise Kingdom Fall being one of them and this spiritual edutainment continues to evolve in 2007. 2006 Dinky's 80's past came back and he registered the past with The Channel Club Boston's best Live Rock Boston's Best Live Rock .com was created for the many Channel employees and Boston bands that have fond memories of The Channel Club Boston MA. Historical artifact era has begun with the History Channel's Modern Marvels 60's tech program that I gave credit to Bill Hanley for him creating the multicore snake 10 years before I took the idea to England and change live mixing position for ever. 2007 sees Dinky at the Music Museum of New England historical plaque dedication for the Tea Party were Fleetwood Mac called their US home in 1969 Music Museum of New England
Spring 2007 starts a new era as Dinky's recording archives are in Wolfgang's Vault 2011 Pro Sound Web 2011 article.
Permanent Installations and Consultations
TV and Radio Shows
Paradise Theater, Boston, MA Don Kirschner’s Rock Concert Paul’s Mall, Boston, MA Thanksgiving at Sing Sing South Shore Music Circus, Cohasset, MA Ambrosia Starfleet Studios, Boston, MA Friends in Concert, Select Cable Cape Cod Melody Tent, Hyannis, MA Pop and Rocker Show Channel Club, Boston, MA Cousin Brucie Show Wayside Inn, Chatham, MA Nickelodeon TV Necco Place, Boston, MA New Kids on the Block at Disney World Vertigo Club, Boston, MA KISS 108 Fourth of July Concert Ansche Chesed Temple, New York City, NY Westwood One Broadcasts from the Paradise Hub Club, Boston, MA WBCN Club Simulcasts South Shore Art Association Art Gallery, Cohasset, MA Nick’s Comedy Stop, Boston, MA Twilight Series Concerts, Lenox, MA Cabot House, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA Reuben Gittelman Hebrew Day School, New City, NY
McGovern for President Benefit, Hickory Hill, VA
Thanksgiving at Sing Sing Prison w/ B. B. King & Joan Baez
Friends in Concert/Mamas & Papas and the Association Kennedy Center, Washington , DC Friends in Concert/Turtles and Gary Puckett Avery Fisher Hall Concerts, New York, NY New Kids on the Block - Hanging Tough CBS Records Bahamas Convention New Kids on the Block - Hanging Tough Live ABC Records Convention, New York, NY Kingdom Rise, Kingdom Fall Georgio Sant’Angelo Opening, Macy’s, New York, NY WRKO Hatch Shell Spring Fever Concert Boston Globe Jazz Festival, Boston, MA Cranberry World Concerts (Ocean Spray), Plymouth, MA Rick James at the Apollo, New York, NY Hello Dolly with Carol Channing, Cohasset, MA
Major Label Audio Recordings/Books
Fleetwood Mac English Rose, Then Play On, Kiln House, Chicago Byrds Byrdmaniax, Farther Along Lou Reed Berlin, Rock and Roll Animal, Live Steely Dan Katy Lied, Royal Scam, Aja, Greatest Hits Orleans Forever Joan Baez From Every Stage Mahavishnu Orchestra Between Nothingness and Eternity Jonathan Richman Original Modern Lovers Chris Whitley Terra Incognita Fleetwood Mac Shrine 69 on RYKO DISC Life On The Road: Billboard Books with Carter Alan a Watson-Guptill publication