Last Day of Basic Tracks
Well, yesterday was the last day spent recording basic tracks for the upcoming CD. We now have 11 song ideas down and probably 60 or 70 minutes of music. The problem is; do we record the three or four other songs we have in the pipeline or stretch out on the guitar playing on these pieces building them up? The latter gets my vote because I hear this all the time from fans "more solos". So, last night we had a friend, Rob Livesy, bring over a beautiful old Fender Pro Reverb from the 70's which looked and smelled brand new ( you gear heads love this stuff, I know. ) Today we'll pick up an old Vox 4 input AC 30 model and start stripping down the drums in the main room. We've got my Fender Pro Sonics and Muddy's Engl amp too. The room will become an amp farm and we'll probably have a few rigs working so that Muddy and I can move from one to the other easily for the array of sounds we'll be needing. Guitars on hand are Gibsons, PRS, Chilcotts, Duesenbergs, Burns, Epiphone, Case and ranging in age from 1952 up to 2010.
It's turned into a bitterly cold week up here in the north of England so the warm studio is the place in which to stay. Cooking has mostly been shared by yours truly and the Mudman, although Bob promises us his famous leek and potato soup today. The troops have been fed well and I've actually enjoyed using our newly installed kitchen here at Read Hall. This is almost as much fun as the studio control room itself, featuring a new oven with induction hob, microwave, dishwasher and a cupboard full of single malts and aged blends to 'test' while slaving over a hot stove! ( courtesy of Robert in Glasgow.) Chef's bonus. This week the menu has been salmon, spaghetti bolognese, roast chicken, fry - ups and other assorted 'blokes' meals. There's enough food in the fridge to produce a curry and some hearty chicken soup. Everything is under control except that Joe makes manic, sugar induced, forays up to the local service station to supplement his diet with Ben & Jerry's Cookie dough ice cream and various pies and cakes, which he can consume in vast amounts. Not so, us older team members!
Thanks to Tom Greenwood who has handled the recording duties including last night, a radio station ID from me for Radio Alligator in Bratislava, Slovakia! That was fun. The new Genesys console by Neve has worked out well for recording, although we always need more channels so they bought a little add - on up from the factory for us. Appreciate it guys! Tom also managed to score a couple of ribbon mikes which should be interesting to test out on the guitar amps. Working song titles are Warm Tears, Sailors, Answer is Love, Give it Up, Big Issues and so on.
Late on Tuesday evening we'll break everything down and load up the Sprinter to get ready for an early start down to Dover, to head over to France ( as long as we won't need an ice breaker. ) A couple of the shows, I know, are close to being sold out. We'll look forward to meeting all our French friends and picking up copies of the new DVD Rockumentary - This Is Wishbone Ash. I've been working on the package and liner notes all week and it's at the printers as I pen this. We had some delay due to the strikes in France. We were almost persuaded to go with a cheaper standard packaging as a result, but producer Christian Guyonnet and I held out for the much nicer digipack container. I think you'll like it and the work itself.
It's been Thanksgiving Holiday weekend in the States so my thoughts have been there as well with my friends and family who have been celebrating in different places like Annapolis and Orlando, Florida. At almost 4 years of age, our granddaughter, Sophie Rose, got her first Disneyworld experience, with all her cousins. A huge fan of princesses, she apparently was understandably wary when confronted by a 6 foot high Cinderella. Puts it all in perspective anyway, so to speak.
Love to all and see you on the road.