R.I.P. Ed Cherney

(Elk - please lay off Ed!)


Unlike Mr. Baker, I have every reason to believe Ed was both highly talented and a good guy.

Well, this has been sadly inactive. I suppose it requires a foil to spur the conversation ; ). At any rate, here is a video of a conversation Warren Huart had with Ed a while back, which should be interesting to most, either technically, or for his work with greats like Quincy Jones (good film about Q on Netflix, BTW):

@cookie (Cookie Marenco) was acquainted with Ed. Perhaps she’ll chime in with reminisinces.

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Thank you for inviting me to comment…

Ed Cherney was an amazing man.
I’m still in shock to hear the news of his passing.

The last time I was with Ed was a year ago at Skywalker where a small group of audio engineers was invited to listen to music over a few days. Ed always made the gathering fun. He was the '‘child’ in the room, cracking jokes to keep us amused, making sarcastic remarks and keeping the event entertaining in a casual way. But when it was time to serious, he was serious and to the point.

Between listening, we’d chat, sit at various configurations of tables to dine. We’d tell our industry stories. Last year he was more melancholy than most. A touch of sadness I had never seen before. I don’t know if he knew of his cancer or not. He’d brush off the sadness with a touch of a joke to bring the humor of life back. I got the sense he was as confused as the rest of us as to what the music industry had become and what happened to skills once required to do this job.

I casually asked him… “what are you working on, Ed” and he responded in a somewhat saddened tone, “no one you’ve ever heard of”. I got the sense the industry had walked away from him as it had from all of us to become something we didn’t really understand.

I had done a number of these kinds of events with him. A yearly invitation-only time to sit among the greats of audio engineers from across the country. His work always stood out as among the best sounding audio being created. It didn’t matter the format… whether stereo or surround or CD or high res… Ed’s recording and mixing were what we mere mortals aspired to.

He founded what became the Producers and Engineers Wing of the NARAS organization, of which I was proud to be part of from its earliest inception. We had a gathering this year at Skywalker, but Ed wasn’t there. We gathered to send him a get-well video without really understanding the graveness of his condition. There was no "child’ in the room this year. We missed him.

I didn’t know him well, but I loved him. He treated me as a friend when we were together. I haven’t been able to really put his passing behind me. I don’t understand that I won’t see him again. The memories I have of him are so solid and real and full of life.

Eddie was one of a kind… like no other. I will miss him terribly.

Cookie Marenco
Blue Coast Music


Wonderful reminiscence, Cookie

Thanks so much Cookie. You can see from the video both the melancholy and the sense of humor, the typically Chicagoan combination of self-deprecation and work ethic. I lived in Chicago and environs for 30+ years, it is where my career in video and audio production really got going. My wife was from Evanston, and a good friend was from Skokie (okey-dokey, girl from Skokie!), so his reminiscences bring all that back for me.

The current issue of Mix (November, 2019) just came out. It has a nice opening editor’s column dedicated to Ed Cherney.

Great video. Thanks for digging it up and posting it.


Thanks, but no digging involved.

Lots of studio rats (with studio tans) watch Warren’s interviews with the great and the small, and his recording tips (the “kids” call them “tricks” nowadays) videos. “I hope you’re doing Marvellously Well!” Audio engineers’ Cooking Show, so to speak ; )

This one came up a while back and I sent it to Cookie, as it was apropos of other discussions, and I reckoned she knew Ed.

I joined the P&E Wing of my NARAS Chapter in Chicago when Ed formed it (in L.A., AFAIK), but it proved to be a fairly exclusive club…understandably.