So, Andrew Schaap came by E-Land the other day and picked up the raw tracks for "I Will Become" and "Pearl Gray." He is going to do some production work on it and I can't wait to hear what they come back sounding like I have been very ill lately and unable to get in the studio, but I like the pace of "Wild and Free" so far. Everything has come very naturally. Hope to be better next week and resume Tuesday nights with Danny B. Every new bass line is really my new favorite.
Going to get my head back into space and write some more tunes. Hope your times are good. Happy Thanksgiving!
Well, well....I have been working in the studio again. Back from New Orleans, where we have 90% of my next full length record done!
Here at home I picked back up with Dan & Co. to work on my new record with Invisible Music (also 90% done) and of course, Wild and Free. Nathan Jezek tracked the most amazing guitar part at Elegbaland yesterday. All it needs is organ and tamborine. Maybe Andrew Schaap (piano on "No One Said It Was Easy") can do the organ? He's my brother-in-law and also the best organ player you know. Stay tuned. Still trying to figure out how to release all this stuff. Thinking about doing digital singles or something as they get finished and then press the vinyl??? I dunno.
Got acoustics and piano and vocals done on "I Will Become." Elegbaland's new gear sounds soooo good. Retro 176. Amazing. Anyways, we are getting ever closer to finishing tracking "Wild and Free." This week I have a pretty cool show. I am playing at the Norton Art Museum in West Palm Beach. Solo acoustic. I am going to try to play every song on all three records. Some of these songs I have never played before. So, learning, translating, re-shaping....it's been pretty cool. So, if you are local, come out Thursday. I start at 7. Hope all is well
Hey, Just got back from New Orleans. A lot of sleep later, here we are. The recording went very well. Recorded at the new Listen Up! Studios with Michael Seaman and Ben Roberts. David Vandervelde also came, and superlatives aren't enough. We had so much fun. Record took an immediate direction, and it sounds like an album. Of course, we did nothing to address the unfinished Ghetto Tested sessions, Sea Garden Blues sessions, or Wild and Free. But that's okay. Charles Dye and I talked yesterday and we'll be starting final mixes on Sea Garden Blues in early June. So either, there'll be a lot of music at the end of the year, or..... The titles of the songs that David, Michael, Ben and I have started are: Bedroom Walls Black on Black Night Gas & Matches Wildflower Winds This Summer Robert's Bar
Sounds like half an album right?
The first 2 songs that Charles and I are going to mix in early June for Sea Garden Blues are: Sea Garden Blue Jesus Christ
So, a lot of stuff going on at once, which is the way I like it. I also have 2 tours in the works. One in late july or mid august with Mike Dunn & TKONE. One in mid Sept with Gasoline Heart. Both will be east coast only runs. Hope all is well. JR
So I am off to finish up the record. Gonna take my act to New Orleans and see what happens. Don't know all the details yet but I am excited to get out of town and finish something. Had a great meeting with Charles Dye on Saturday and he is starting some mixes for Wild and Free. VERY exciting. I get by with a little help from my friends. A lotta work to do and then a tour. Plan.
Finally got some time to myself and finished the main vocal and the harmony vocal for Bethlehem. Also, got a 12-string acoustic part done. And a pretty good idea of where the song is going.
So, 2 songs now are nearly in the bag. Wild and Free. Bethlehem. Michael is working on Fight Songs and also on Overboard. As soon as I get those I am off to work on them. I am thinking of finishing as much as I can here in the next few weeks and then traveling to New Orleans to finish there at Listen Up Studios. We'll see.
A new song called "I'm Not Your Man" is ready to be tracked. Really excited about that one.
Meanwhile, my new band Invisible Music is nearly done with an album writing-wise. Not sure how we are gonna go about getting it done, but I want to do a live recording, all of us in the same room. Then go back and do vocal overdubs after. I need a building.
So, a very few things have been getting done lately. It's been difficult scheduling everyone etc...But Dan came and played bass the other day for Bethlehem and it is in my Top 3 Dan Basslines. And it is my favorite bass tone I have ever recorded. I don't have a lot to say tonight. But my pictures will have to do. I went to the studio the other day and Daisy literally was on the console attacking my hand every time I touched the mouse. Hilarious. Didn't get a thing done that night. Hope all is well. Picture Parade.
So I wrote a new one called Fight Songs. Really pleased with it. Jeff came by and tracked drums today. It's about 2:14 in length. A lot of these songs are short and sweet. Some are even shorter than Needle Bed's songs. I have moved on from "Undertow" maybe I'll get back to it. Michael played me some drum stuff that he has worked on for me over the phone and I am really excited to get that back in hand. He had been working on "Overboard" and "I Walked Every Step of the Way."
It's starting to get hot here already. Ah, the Florida season(s). Watched that Angelina Jolie movie Wanted. It's OK. I tried last night and fell asleep to it. Finished it today. Planted a Starburst in my front yard beneath my front window. Green and purple. They are really beautiful plants.
Good couple of days. Sunday my friend Jonathan Wilkins of Postmarks fame came over and we laid down some drums for Songs 2 &3 of a Trilogy about a man who became a fish after he got killed by paratroopers. Song 2 of said Trilogy is called "I Walked Every Step of the Way" in which the former man (now a fish, duh, follow along) explains to his fellow fish how he got from place to place up on dry land. Song 3 of said Trilogy is called "Overboard." In this song, we hear about the man-fish adjusting to his new life and living near the surface so as to keep as near as possible to his former people. Got it? Like in Star Wars, I'll tell you about the first installment later. Like a prequel. AAAAnnnnyways. That was fun. Jon also played drums on "Bethlehem," which so far is really coming out nicely. Still has room for some nice guitar. Maybe slide?
Today was Monday. Got an early start and did mostly clerical work. Sent some files to my friend and yours, Michael Seaman (Needle Bed, Sorry Vampire engineer/producer), of Listen Up! Studios New Orleans fame. He has agreed kindly to help and I sense an 808 Loop coming our way folks. Near future.
Then I played piano on a song Jeff laid down drums to on Saturday called Pearl. Piano came out really nice. And that was it for "Wild and Free." Lot of time in the studio, but not a whole ton to show for it. Hey folks, some times that's the way the eggshell cracks.
I woke up too early this AM. Went to buy lawn furniture with Marc from a nice woman named Lois...who happened to be in the "music business." She is in radio. I gave her a copy of Needle Bed. Wouldn't it be amazing if she got me some airplay? Anyhow, I ended up buying sooo much stuff that Rob had to help me haul it all away. Oh, back to the story. She said she saw Frampton in Nashville the other night. I told Jeff that story. He said, "Frampton? In Nashville? That doesn't sound right." But I bet it was all right if old Pete brought the Talk Box. Heil.
We got Bass on the first song "Wild and Free" (note Dan's new 62 P-Bass in Olympic White).We ran him direct through the Radial DI and through the Gibson Starfire, which is my fave amp for Bass right now. We mic'd that up with another favorite: the Cascade Vin Jet. Also, Jeff got drums done on "I Will Become" and a song called "Pearl." Rob was there for a while making sure things were up to par. Got an encouraging phone call from a friend I hadn't talked to in a while.
Marc came up with a really cool idea for a piano sound on Bethlehem, and I put a rough vocal down. The piano part is WAY more exciting than the rough vocal. The rough vocal is rufff.
So, I re-worked the song for a few hours til I was happy with it. Went to the studio and Marc tracked the acoustic. I used my Gibson LG-1. I have to tape it up quite a it cause there is a nasty rattle. I think the pickguard needs to be re-glued. Anyhow...
I actually started the day off working around the house. Took a walk with the dogs. Pre-coffee. Saw a couple of wicker/metal chairs in a neighbors trash pile. So I took them home and spray painted them white. They look really nice. Then I pulled some weeds and watered my palm trees. I am in the neverending process of making my yard nice. Three years of touring has made it look unkempt. Full of weeds. Dried out grass.
Then I finished my coffee and worked on Bethlehem for a few hours. Tracked it. Then I tried another song, realized I hadn't eaten all day, and called it a night. Feel super weak right now. A lot of my friends are sick so I hope this isn't a harbinger of ill.
The acoustic sounds are amazing though. We used the Peluso P12 and the Shure SM 81. I hadn't used this combo before and it sounded great through the Uinversal Audio Pre's and the Summit Audio Compressors.
Tomorrow, Jeff and Dan are sure to arrive to Bass and Drum and Trumpet. Ta Ta.
I usually write in a notebook, so I was surprised to find this song on my computer. I figured it was a sign. I remember writing it on a Saturday AM. So, this is what I will go into the studio with today:
Think on me lovingly If you think of me at all Disconnect me from the power lines In your brain' s hallowed halls Be With Me Now Be With Me Now I've bowed my head to walk the miles Back to Bethlehem
Sweet Lord I've been suffering There's a war inside my head I used to be sure of many things But those knots came loose I'm afraid Be with me now Be with me now I've bowed my head to walk the miles Back to Bethlehem
B B (add G# bass) Salt in the wounds E Supper on the vine B B (add G# bass) I've got legs and arms that work E But a heart that will not climb F# E Speak for me now F# E Speak for me now B F# B E My throat is dull from cannibals E F# B Along the road to Bethlehem
Got a lot done today, but not as much as I'd have liked. All in all, a good day. Oh, and I am celebrating by listening to ELO and drinking a Famosa. ELO = great. Famosa = not so great, but reminds me of a great tour with my friends the Modern Skirts (Jeff, Susan, Dan, and I did that one together).
Dan was sick today, so no Bassing nor Trumpeting was done. That worked out OK though cause I came up with a really cool synth part using my Yamaha CS1x. The patch I used was called "Fragile" ironically enough.
I also started Song #2, which is called "I Will Become." Jeff came by the studio today and we sketched out an idea. But Marc Ward, who owns Elegbaland (my studio for those that don't know) was sick as well so I didn't want to wake him up with the drums. So Jeff came back to the house and you've heard the rest: ELO and Famosa.
Tomorrow I hope to start earlier. We'll see where the spirit leads.
Day One was Monday, which was a day off from work. After a year away from touring (has it been more than a year now?) I have a lot of demos and unfinished albums. But I wrote a song recently called Wild and Free and it sort of shone a light down a path that seems right. So, Monday I went to Elegbaland with Marc Ward and we started the process. Piano and Vocals are done. I played drums last night (couldn't get a hold of Jeff) and was happy with the result. The song is 2 minutes long and will be the opener. Dan of course will be by today at 4ish and we will Bass and maybe Trumpet. Already I know which song will be Song #2. So, now, I will finish lyrics and drink my coffee. The dogs are sleeping on the couch and it is oh so tempting to be lazy today. Nico is snoring.