Paint Face

March 31st, 2009 |

Guess who volunteered to paint the ceiling tonight.

The Recipe For Making Music

March 25th, 2009 |

Here are the ingredients necessary for making a great record, so we made sure we had them all.

1) A Slinky

2) Krispy Kreme Donuts (with sprinkles)

3) Oatmeal Pies

4) A bunch of guitars, none of which are tuned to standard tuning. Actually, make that – none of which are tuned at all.

Here’s the kit Joe used.

What Are These Drums For?

March 21st, 2009 |

Another vlog discussing the use of studio musicians and the role of a drummer in the making of a singer/songwriter album.

Fresh Ears

March 19th, 2009 |

Jacob emailed me some mp3s of everything we recorded this past weekend. I was a little nervous before I listened to them because I’ve been in recording sessions before where you’re absolutely convinced that you’re making the next Pet Sounds, but┬áthe next morning you listen back to what you recorded and it’s complete garbage.┬áThat is not at all the case this time.

I am even more pleased now after listening with fresh ears, and listening in my usual listening environment. I can’t wait to get back in there and put my sloppy filth on top of these awesome rhythm tracks.

What Happened To The Band?

March 17th, 2009 |

Over the past few weeks I’ve been asked the question “Is this a band record or is this a solo record?” multiple times and in multiple formats. And now that you’ve seen the video from a couple of days ago I’m sure many more of you were asking the same question but just never wrote or called or knocked.

Of course some of you may not know that the rhythm section in the video was not the same rhythm section as in the band but let me clear this up.

This is a solo record. The musicians in the video are studio musicians. The decision to use studio musicians instead of my own musicians was not an easy one. I’m a band guy at heart. I’ve been playing in bands almost non-stop since I was sixteen. I love being in a band.

The problem with using the guys in the band was a logistical problem not a talent problem. Scheduling rehearsals was a total nightmare because, now that we’re all grown-ups, we actually have family responsibilities, church responsibilities, job responsibilities, and so on. And if scheduling rehearsals is hard you can imagine how much harder it would be to schedule studio time.

Lou (my drummer) and I are still very much interested in playing music together but for right now I really wanted to get this record made. So the decision was made to use some of Jacob‘s crew.

I hope this clears up any confusion.

Day One

March 15th, 2009 |

Day one of tracking went extremely well, better than I could have hoped really. Joe Meyer (Drums) and Eric Grossman (Bass) both turned in some rather outstanding performances. Today we went back in and recorded some more drum tracks for about an hour, got what we needed to get done, and called it a day. I can’t tell you how excited I am with what we’ve got so far.

I took my camcorder with me to capture some of the weekend but the thing died on me. I was able to get a little bit of video with my digital camera but not much. You’ll get to hear a little of the new music and a lot of the rhythm section/comic duo of Joe and Eric.

And So It Begins

March 13th, 2009 |

Tomorrow we’ll begin tracking my new album. That means I won’t sleep tonight. I will most likely spend my night lying in bed, staring at the ceiling (like I can even see that far), and praying. My prayer will probably go something like this:

Dear heavenly father, creator of heaven and earth, please, please, for the love of all that’s holy, don’t let me freak out tomorrow. I am but a lowly, sinful worm. I am chief of all high-strung killjoys. Let me not acquiesce to my jerk-faced flesh. Let me have fun, though fun is often the first to fall victim to my unwillingness to waste time even for a righteous cause. Let me let music happen. Let me not happen to music. You are the creator of music. Help me to remember that. Dear God, let my music glorify you and not me, even though I’ve been working on that one lick for two years now and it might be nice if someone actually noticed. Anyway, you get my point. Lastly, let the musicians like me. Let me be likeable. Don’t let me take any of this too seriously even though there are few things I cherish more than the gift of music. Help me to listen more than talk. And please help me to sing in tune. In Jesus name, Amen.

This week I spent some time putting together some charts for the new tunes. With one tune in particular, called The Temptress, I realized that writing out the chords made the song look quite a bit more complicated than it actually is. It’s certainly not a simple tune but it’s nowhere near as hard as these chord names make it look. Check out the pdf file here.

I finally got the needed repairs done on my saxophone and picked it up from the shop this week. It’s all back in working order now so I took some pictures. Here’s one.

Pretty huh? Word. It’s the real thing. A Selmer Mark VI made in Paris in February of 1958. I just thought I’d let you see it now that it’s been pulled out of retirement.