Friday, October 10, 2008
Day Seven (10/10/08)
The final day of recording acoustic guitars!
Ben and I decided early on to record the acoustic guitars first in this process (most times drums are recorded first). Doing this will hopefully make tracking day (drums & bass) a much quicker, and therefore less expensive, process. Studio-wise, time usually equals money. A tight budget means we have to work quickly and wisely.
This morning I tried recording the acoustic guitar part for "Chrome" (a third-person song about my being a bicycle; I saw a bike at a subway stop chained to a post rusted, weathered and abandoned in Washington DC when Gabe Scott was with me on tour several years ago. It had obviously been left there by its owner several years prior. I wrote the song then - 2004 - but never did anything with it until now.), but I wasn't good enough to adequately pull off the part. So, instead, we asked Andy Gullahorn (one of the most tasteful guitar accompanists I know) to record the part. Besides, I'd been wanting to invite Andy to play on an album ever since Scarce came out in '06, so this was a great opportunity. After eating a Bar B Cutie lunch with Andy Osenga, Cason Cooley and Ben's doppelganger brother Josh, we drove to Gullahorn's place (The Night Owl's Nest) where he played the delicate, finger-picky guitar part, along with a couple of beautiful layering tracks, much better than I could have ever accomplished. Jill (Phillips) (whose wonderful new album releases on Dec. 1) was kind enough to bake us a chocolate pie upon completion of the task. Sugar rush on, Ben and I drove back to the Beehive to record acoustic guitars for "Run Down", the 11th and final song to track. This is a song based on the epic Richard Adams rabbit novel, Watership Down. If you've never read the book, please do.
A week of non-stop song arranging, acoustic guitars, and singing rough vocals has me mentally fried. I'm out of shape in more than just the physical sense. None of this is physical labor per se, but it certainly taxes the mind. At least it does mine since album-making is not an everyday activity for me. To know that we have all eleven acoustic guitar parts done is a most welcome moment. There were times while I was writing some of these that I was unsure I'd ever figure out how to actually play them, much less record them for posterity sake. I'm glad it's on tape now.
Ben and I break for another week or so before scheduling some tracking days with a drummer (to be named), a percussionist (to be named), and bass player (ditto). That's when the real fun starts. More to come. Thanks for staying tuned in. I'm glad you're here.