Studio Pro-Audio

For Jim Messina, StudioLive AI isn’t the same old wine

Mon, 13 Jun 2016 11:03

Jim Messina

Unless you were born yesterday—and maybe even then—you’re familiar with Jim Messina’s vocals, guitar work, songwriting, and production wizardry. Although best known for Loggins and Messina, Poco, Buffalo Springfield, and his solo efforts, he has worked with countless artists.

Recently, Messina ( released a new live album, In the Groove, showcasing his songs and current band and featuring former Poco bandmate and pedal steel legend Rusty Young. In addition to releasing In the Groove as a vinyl LP, Messina and Wolff offer the album as WAV and MP3 files on an 8 GB USB flash card. The “Access All” USB card also includes video, cover art, photos, liner notes, and even an encore song that didn’t fit on the LP.

Performed and recorded at the Lobero Theater in Santa Barbara, California, and the Clark Center for the Performing Arts in Arroyo Grande, California, Messina’s show was mixed on a PreSonus® StudioLive® 32.4.2AI console by front-of-house engineer and audio electronics designer Paul Wolff and recorded directly to a Mac running PreSonus Capture™ software. PreSonus StudioLive 312AI loudspeakers served as stage monitors. The concert was streamed live using new technology from Aftermaster (, with video production by California Streamin’ (

The StudioLive 32.4.2AI has proven a good choice in multiple ways. “I am thrilled with the console,” Messina enthuses. “It’s small and lightweight, and you can afford to buy it and take it with you. We like the preamps, the EQ is right, and you can assign things just by pushing a button. Recording from the mixer with Capture is a no-brainer: You plug in a FireWire cable, press Record, and go. The StudioLive lets us record the way we want to, and the tracks for the live album sound fantastic!”

“I don’t have to think about running the console,” Wolff avers. “It’s the closest thing to mixing with an analog mixer. That is extremely important; when something happens, and all hell breaks loose, I can’t sit there and flip through software pages to make an adjustment. With the StudioLive, everything is right where I can grab it quickly. I was able to use the console to mix FOH, a front-row mix, a sidefill mix, a mono mix, tracking for the record, and a mix for the live stream—all at once. My best tip? Don’t buy a stupid console that can’t do that!”

Messina also uses his StudioLive AI console at rehearsals. “It’s great for full rehearsals,” he insists. “We’ve even recorded rehearsals with it so we can check what we’re playing. Having that flexibility is awesome! The StudioLive AI lets you mix and record without thinking about the equipment. I made the decision to buy the StudioLive 32.4.2AI, and I’ve never regretted it!”

For more information on PreSonus products, please visit