New Glasses

I went to the eye doctor today to get a new Rx and to order some new glasses. The new glasses look almost exactly like the ones I have now but a little bit smaller. If it ain’t fixed, don’t broke it. I figure that having smaller glasses will make my head look bigger. Then the size of my head will appear to be the same size that people think it is.

During the exam the doctor gave me some eye drops to dilate my pupils. The last time I had that done it made me extremely nauseous. This time it wasn’t so bad. The totally rad inserts the doc gave me made it all worth it. I rocked these suckers for the better part of the day.

Drew Johnson

New Smoker

When we got home I took my new smoker for its maiden voyage. A few weeks ago I was telling my mom how much I’d like to have a smoker but I didn’t want to shell out the money for one. She suggested I put a wanted add in our church’s classifieds saying that I was looking for one just in case someone was wanting to get rid of one. I was certain that there was no chance that would work so I didn’t do anything about it.

A couple of weeks later one of the guys in the church came up to me and said “I hear you’re looking for a smoker.” That kind of freaked me out. How did he know? My mom is in charge of the classified adds. That’s how.

He said he had a brand new smoker still in the box that he had never even put together. It was just taking up space in his shed. He said if I’d come haul it off he’d give it to me for free. Holla! The thing is awesome. I don’t know how much he paid for it but it’s super nice. Thanks mom.

So I started off with something easy and smoked some chicken today. Pretty stinkin’ good. Needs some work but definitely a nice start.

New Perspective – Invention of the Wheel

A few days ago Chris Gustave mentioned that he was hanging out with John Dear and that John had The Drew Johnson Band’s song ‘Fall Fights’ playing in his car. That reminded me that I hadn’t heard that album in a long time so I dug it out to see if it was still good.

I listened to the whole thing all the way through and there were a few spots that made me smile with pride. Things that I had forgotten how much I enjoyed. Here they are.

The guitar tone in ‘Downtown’ is killer. Strat + Matchless + Tube Screamer = Crazy delicious.

The “shout chorus” at the end of Liberty is very cool. (I always considered the “Let your light shine” part a shout chorus) The vocals sounded cooler than I remembered.

The Ballad of War’s End is still my pride and joy. I like all of it. All of it.

The vocal harmonies on the chorus of Blues for Serena are super cool. They definitely made me smile. I also like the vocals in the pre-chorus, the “Kurt gonna grant you everything you lack” part. Those vocals are highly stylized so they sound a bit weird. They were meant to resemble some of the female background vocal stuff that Zappa did. It’s at least in the ballpark.

Those were the things that stood out for me.

Here are a few things that I didn’t like.

The reverb I used on the drums sounded natural to me when we mixed the record. It doesn’t any more.

The doubling (tripling actually) trick I used on most of the lead vocals sounded subtle to me when we mixed it. I thought it fattened it up just a smidge. Now it sounds slick and chorus-y. Bad call.

Dino and I have talked about doing a commentary on Invention of the Wheel like directors and actors do in the special features of a DVD. I think that would be fun. There are many, many stories from the making of that record that I think people might find interesting.

I’m still very proud of that record and I’m glad I can listen to it without cringing. I think we did a lot more right than we did wrong.