Sunday, April 27, 2008
Yesterday, I drove up to Pasadena, CA. It wasn't a bad drive. I had directions to go from the toll roads onto the I-5 North to the 605, then the 210 west. I wanted to see what the 57 was like from the 5, so I took that instead of the 605, and found 210 west. No matter where I drive, SoCal looks the same. I don't mind that, its warm and I like all the palm trees.
I got there oh.. about 10:45am and found Jim waiting and what a great place! His home was very welcoming and he took me to his studio. WHAT a great place to work. He did most of the interior work himself it is quite amazing what he has done to get it the way he wanted it. We immediately dove into work. We worked on Carpe Diem first. He took some notes of the song's measure and bpm ( beats per minute) and then he hopped over to where his drum is set up/mics were. He told me to put on the Vic Firth headphones, which I did. ( to hear the music as well as protecting my ears). I told him he had free creativity.. I didn't want to limit him, I wanted to let him have the freedom to do what the music made him feel.
WOW.. he did an excellent job! He knows my music well enough that he truly nailed the rhythm, timing and dynamics of what I wanted for the song. He will be giving me the drum tracks so that I can have Seay listen to it and work with her part. Once Seay is done with the vocals we get it mixed!
I'd say about 1:30ish pm - 2pm, my stomach started to contribute some music of its own, and so we decided to get something to eat. We ate at the Crocodile Cafe, if you go and stay in Pasadena, go eat there. Its totally awesome. He showed me around Pasadena a little bit. I must say I love the older homes in that area. Some of the homes he showed me had a mixture of architecture from like the Spanish Villa's, to Southern Plantation, New England, and something I would call a Southwest Spanish homestead and a rambler. He has a Craftman type of home.. which is something from the 1920's - 1940's type of look. Its very lovely/homey. We went back, and Paul Franco was waiting for us. He is a friend from MySpace that came out to support me when I was at BB Kings. He also is a very good photographer. So, he came to join the fray and take photos of the session. He's a very funny, intelligent man and extremely talented with the camera.
We loaded up Dancin in the Clouds.. and Jim took notes again of the basics of the song. I was NOT disappointed. The man knows me so well, that he really let go and played his heart out. Meanwhile, Paul started taking photos. I am looking forward to what he took. Dancin is full of energy. Jim showed me some tricks to make some sounds from the drums that I would never have guessed. (I took some pictures, but I will upload them later on today. ) Paul will have some shots too, so between the two of us, we'll let you see what the studio looks like ..etc.
We worked up until I'd say about 5:45pm and Jim had a gig he needed to go play at and so we wrapped it all up. So by the time I got home, he had uploaded the two songs for me to access and listen.
I drove home in record time. I decided to take the 210 East, to the 605 South, then connect with the 5 South into OC, the 133 toll road to the 241 into Rancho Santa Marguerita. I noticed when I left there was a fire on the Pasadena foothills. Fires here already.. sup with that? It was burning in the "Cleveland National Shrubbery".... ok well THEY don't call it a National Shrubbery.. but I do.. the trees are NOT EVEN tall enough to be called a forest, they are at best shrubs. Hence my funny name for it. Anyway, I digress. I got home safe and sound... actually met my family to eat dinner with them and it was a fun homecoming. I was missed and I missed them.
As always these things tend to go way too fast because I AM having so much fun. After dinner we came home I was exhausted. I listened to the mp3's of our work and its SO awesome. I would post the two songs.. but I want you to wait for a little bit. I'll have them mixed and then I will post them.
Paul, thanks for coming! You are SO much fun, I enjoyed having you being there seeing what I live for. ( ok.. thats dramatic.. but I am a musician..and I am a bit of a drama queen ) I look forward to seeing the pictures.
Jim.. as always it was a pleasure to work with you and I truly felt like you knew what I wanted.. you have my thanks!
As always I can never sleep after these sessions. Last night was no exception. I am up early.. WHY that is I don't know *sigh* Anyway.. its gonna make the day a bit interesting.
Pictures to come soon.
Peace in Music,