Thursday, September 11, 2014

Breeders Tribute Update

I picked the next group of songs for the tribute recording project maybe a month ago.
"Only in 3's"
"The She"
"Little Fury"
"London Song"
"Too Alive"
"Put on a Side"
"Sinister Foxx"
"Tipp City"
"I Am Decided"
"Forced to Drive"
"Bragging Party"
"Empty Glasses"

Two weeks ago I spent a weekend working out the drum parts (hurt my back sitting on the drum throne stooped over writing notes using my snare as a desk too long...and it still hurts...old!), and last weekend and the week prior recorded the drum parts. They aren't perfect, but most are "good enough."

Last night I was in good "Kim" voice coming off of a long CJ rehearsal that ended with me singing "Into the White," "Manta Ray," and "Bam Thwok" right in a I rushed home and started recording. Got down lead vox for all but Only in 3s, Too Alive, Bragging Party (discovered 3/4 of way through song that I'm missing the lyrics for the last verse), and Istanbul. It was a late night (relatively) and I found myself a bit exhausted with sore legs and back after standing playing bass for 3 hours and then standing a 4th and into a 5th hour to sing...but well worth the effort.  Again...old.

I realized on the ride into work that I've established a very strong pattern for this project which makes surprising sense. Typically when you are recording from scratch you start with drums to set the foundation. I've done this in this project too even though it isn't necessary at all because I use the original recordings as scratch tracks and don't even listen to the tracks I've recorded until the whole song is done. Why, I wondered? It is as simple as the fact that drums are the easiest thing to pick up first. They are intuitive. Even a non-musician can clap along to a recording. I spend a few weeks listening and learning and writing out notation for the drums...and then I record them when they are pretty good. I can't wait to record, I have to work out the drums, practice them a few times, and then record soon. If I go a week or two without working them, I lose them. By that time I've heard the tunes enough times that the vocals are second nature. So I do those next. Once I have to figure out actual go to is bass. It always has been even back in the days before I PLAYED bass. When I wanted to learn a song in my 20s, I played along to it by picking out the root notes first, and then translating those into chords. And so it is now. Once bass is done all that's left is lead and rhythm guitar. I've been doing lead first, because, I think, they are single notes and easier to pick out. Then I wrap up with guitar because I'm terrible at playing the barre and power chord structures. It is an entirely logical, and accidental, system.