Hi friends, another studio session in the beautiful wooded area just beneath the peak of Mt. Rainier in WA state yesterday, with 7 songs recorded as scratch tracks. it's an interesting ride..some of these tunes I've not played in a year or more, with just 6 days of preparation to revive and record them, it's a lot of work, but I've also found some happy accidents as well as hearing them with fresh ears and appropriate revisions. Likely another 4 to 6 weeks of this, then we'll turn round and assess what we've got, then on to part building and arranging. I couldn't imagine doing anything else as rewarding as song writing and recording. More coming...
Hi friends, it's week 3 of studio work, with 3 scratch tracks down. It's a wonderful and exciting time doing this work. Nothing can be so vital as this process. It's amazing to watch all of this unfolding. Friends both old and new, are arriving to help this along. I'm excited and grateful to have them as companions in this journey. It's a whole lot of gritty work, but I appreciate being challenged on so many levels. It's a fast moving ride here; every weekend a new song. Hearing the work from another client at the other end of this process is awe inspiring, if what we're starting ends up sounding anything like what I've heard I'll, be beyond happy. So I'm trusting the process, and really enjoying the ride. It's the people who make it real.
OK then, the scratch track is down, and the final guitar track was recorded yesterday,.First visit to this studio down in Graham, WA...Mt Rainier up close and personal...out in the middle of nowhere. A great mic collection and a fine engineer, Next step is to finish transposing the chords down from the 7th position where I'm capoed. Then send the files down to Albuquerque to my upright bass playing friend. Once a part is ready we'll book some time at a local studio and get the bass line recorded. Touched base with a pedal steeler with a long experienced hand who's willing to throw in. We'll track him in the same room once the bass part is done. Suddenly this is all possible..the stars have aligned it seems..can I keep up the pace? We'll see. Thanks for following along..more coming.
Hi Friends, so the work continues on this thing. It's the magic of the metronome. My intentions are to have upright bass, and pedal steel in this song. Both of these instruments can benefit from open sweeping spaces in the song. Also, it's real important to give the vocals time to bloom. So, I've gone progressively slower on the tempo. Started at 76 BPM down to 69, and now finally I think it's pretty comfortable at 60BPM. I've been working on enunciation on the vocals, T's, D's, disappear without a bit of accent. Going for the real deal on this one...I've booked a few hours at a studio with a nice mic collection for next Saturday afternoon. An upright bass player friend back in New Mexico is going to help on the bass part, and there a few different steel players open, and finally brushed snare will appear as well. So, we'll see where this all goes. Thanks for reading along, more to come!
That's the new song...written Feb. 28th and have been playing it every day since teasing out the true nature of the song. It's amazing what the metronome will reveal if your honest with yourself. Developing the phrasing, timing, musical themes and breaks..not to mention finding it's groove. We're getting close. I'm hoping to get a scratch track down this weekend. I"m excited about this little song, and have been going about finding a few friends and acquaintances to add their instrumental voices..it's about a quiet winter night, awaiting the return of the king, our hopes, questions, and dreams. The guitar has a twinkling character, accompanied by upright bass, pedal steel, and brushed snare. The work continues...busy playing with stereo recording techniques looking for a wide, clear stereo field for the acoustic guitar...So that's where things are. Stay tuned.
It's that moment between songs, so I've been cleaning house a bit, running the vacuum cleaner over the rugs and going through all of these past attempts and digital recording and recorders. Things that I couldn't fathom, or things that just take my focus away from the creative process are now up on C's list for sale. In the meantime there's a new song "Go Ask Orion" in the works. It's been rolling around in my head for years, come along an early winter night should I step outside. there he is...Orion back around again...my old friend. So the song is a few weeks old now; the chordal structure is together, and tonight I spent a few hours working on vocal phrasing and timing. Also the thing comes in at just about 3 minutes. I was pleasantly surprised as it felt shorter. So here we go. "This Dancing Dream" seems to have been well received, so thank you to all my friends who've taken the time to listen. OK then, life goes on. Thanks
I finally finished "This Dancing Dream" last night. It's a song about the big picture...you know, life. It's a pensive kind of song you might listen to late at night. It's an important one to me, and I'm pretty happy about how it's come around. I'm doing post production on the thing and should have it posted Tuesday or Wednesday. So heads up! Wrote the lyrics last weekend, and the chords and melody this weekend for another song coming soon "Go Ask Orion", I'll be busy developing this one in the coming weeks. Next weekend some house cleaning in the studio...then we'll get into the next recording. Thanks for reading.
Friday, Feb 26 @ 1:02 AM
Life get's complicated. I'm working on "This Dancing Dream"...it's a tender song, sort of pensive, about wishing I'd done some things with some people in a different way...amazed some days at how slow I grow, I come around. So it's a tender kind of thing. The guitar and vocals are together, and though I'm not really a bass player, I'm pleased with the line. I tried like hell to squeeze some steel in there, but the lap won't bend like the pedals will, and I don't have one of them just yet. So I'm fiddling around with a mandolin part for the thing and I just happen to have a cello in my room too. so I'm messing around with that some...a long deep string line feels like it would be nice in there. Weekend soon and I'll be back to my real work in the studio. More comin'
Yes, it's been a while. It's late winter up here out on the outskirts of Seattle town. I'm not much for performing during winter. Winter is for what's known as "woodshedding" and that is study, playing, and hopefully improving. Tis' the season, and that's part of what I've been up to. But in the midst of all that I'm busy in my laboratory yet, and as ever working on my list of songs. You may (not) have noticed that this December past I posted a song called "Madrid", a true tale of romantic intrigue but very country, in kind of a Bakersfield kind of way. Ohh you've not heard it you say?..well then, feel free to have a listen whilst' it remains at the top of my song list here. for "This Dancing Dream" is cooking in the cauldron as we speak. Dancing Dream...a tender tale of midnight rooms and a love lost and gone forever...well, if I can ever create the lap steel part that I seek. As always, I fuss and whine of the limitations of the lap steel..ahh but a pedal steel is in the cards..coming soon I believe. At last pedals...knee levers, notes that bend in the directions I seek! So yes the work is in progress, and Dancing Dream will be along in a few weeks time. Beyond, there are many others. Anyhow I digress, back to "Madrid"...no not the Spanish city, but rather a small forgotten mining town northeast of Albuquerque, New Mexico...between there and Santa Fe. ( Google it) A very romantic place indeed. Go on about your lives then...and maybe we'll make this a regular thing again.
Hey all, been a while. I've been side tracked with a chapter involving dentistry. Things are on the mend now. I've been working in my studio on Just Call me Moon...lots of rehearsing with the metronome, This is a fun song, but a tough one to play and sing at the same time. Getting real close to a good take now. My intention is not just to get something up here, but to get into a proper studio over the coming weeks and get this recorded as a scratch track at least. I've got a batch of 10 songs I've been working pretty intensely on and I'm hoping to get scratch tracks down and we'll see what happens in terms of building them up. New energy is forming now..new people are coming along. I'd like to add as many of my musical friends into the mix as I can. Seems like a fitting thing to do...have fun with it all. OK more work tomorrow and back into the studio and if the metal guys will give me a moments peace maybe I'll get that take this weekend. Thanks for following along.