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Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Visiting Jürg Schopper at Schopper AG (Switzerland)

Last week I travelled to Switzerland... among other amenities, I visited Jürg at his head-office which also is a man-cave, an archive, a workshop and a listening room.. no, it's much more: it's Ali Baba's cave!

Herr Schopper is a true passionate, skilled, knowledgeable professional and a fantastic host.

His firm was founded in 1920 by his grand-father and he proudly showed the Thorens gramophone drawing still portrayed on discs shopping-bag... righteously proud of this heritage.

His dad continued the tradition, now in Jürg's good hands.

We had a meeting for the pleasure of it... as I was a bit early, I enjoyed the Swiss countryside taking a nice walk not far from the small, tidy industrial estate where Schopper AG operates.

When I arrived at the place, I was in awe: several Telefunken's and Studer's studio tape recorders, all turned ON, all in use, not for poser/display reasons... as Jürg owns one of the most impressive collections of master-tapes on the Planet!

He restores them, dubs to digital archival quality and most of all, enjoys this format and isn't shy of sharing and spreading the merits of his best pieces!

He searched with firm-hand on the shelves, all perfectly catalogued by recording date, a live-recording of Atahualpa Yupanki, an incredible South American guitarist/singer, a pancake which he placed on a monumental Telefunken M10...

I remained speechless for several seconds... the playback system was all Swiss made, in-house: full tubes chain throughout and coaxial speakers made at Schopper.


The classical guitar sound was unbelievable: crisp as a live instrument in the room!

A truly impressive experience... as the musician voice.


Other tapes, all master tapes, were shared with yours truly... and was such a pleasure!

Every time I meet these special people I cannot but thinking Music is the most powerful of passions!

... and one of greatest humans bonding glues as it makes the playground for special people gathering.

Thanks to Jürg for his time, support, empathy, generous hosting and kindness.

He rocks!

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