Thursday and Friday, we have passed hump day. Finishing and starting are always the hardest parts. Thursday has been a terrific day for us. Evan, New Realm’s guitar player, got off work in a fortunate turn of events and was able to come record some electric guitar parts for the record. I LOVE recording guitars. To me, they fill such an important role in a composition. It’s a little different than the importance of drums and bass, or vocals or keys for that matter. It’s like the icing on the cake that makes the cake shine and look delicious. Evan and I began the day by getting him some food. Guitarists gotta eat. Did you know Schlotsky’s makes a sandwich size title “Large” that is actually massive? It looks like a personal pizza except its a gourmet turkey sandwich. Anyway, I am digressing.
We feed Evan and then we go on a hunt for a vintage AC30. After making a few last minute calls, we are unable to find this grail, so we head to the studio. I choose to record 2 main amps. One is a Matchless Lightning that I used to own but traded it for a vintage guitar, and the other is my little champion, the trusty ol Fender Blues Junior. I. Love. This. Amp. It never sounds bad, nomatter what you plug into it. For those reading this who care about the more technical side of this process read the next few sentences. If you don’t care for it much skip to the next paragraph for a more condensed update :). I decided to set up three microphones in the recording booth. One was the legendary SM57, another a Coles 4038, and the last a Royer 121. I like the sound of the ribbon mics in front of the amps versus the dynamic SM57 because often they sound smoother, warmer and seem to “sit backwards” in the whole soundscape. I set them up, run them into pre’s, and can easily a/b/c the sounds to see what works best for each particular situation. I found that, as always, the blues junior was amazing for some of the quieter, more melodic applications and the Matchless sang beautifully for the rhythm parts and some cleaner ambient sounds we were creating. Shoutout to Earthquaker devices for helping shape some of our sounds.
We break and go eat at Agua Linda on Prince. Quesadillas are good for all. Bobby eats a burrito that is roughly 1 foot long. Laughs are had over mexican food, then back to the cave we go. We attempt some guitars, but it was getting late. We break out our best friend JUNO and rip into some more synths. Bobby and Drew hang around for a while, and Drew exits. Bobby and I stay at the studio until about 3:00AM to compose an interlude that I think is unfolding beautifully.
Often in the recording (or creative) process, the best ideas are the ones that are never planned. We must be willing to explore and to say yes to something that makes us uncomfortable. That’s how growing happens! My favorite environment is one where people are searching for something unsung, together. I love this particular part we wrote because it was a spontaneous deacon and we didn’t have a tight grip, or grip at all, on how it needed to look. We just created. I can’t wait to share this piece with yall. I get home and in bed around 3:30 because we decide to play halo after returning to the apartment. We’re fully addicted.