In August, we decided it was time to dive in and begin the second album. I had experience multi-tracking at home, Chuck had actually worked at a recording studio years ago, and Dan – now living in California – had the ability to record at home as well. We set up shop in Wesley’s basement to track drums, bass and scratch guitar/vocals and started laying down the bed tracks. Martin Feveyear (who produced our first album) lent us some microphones and stopped by one evening to tweak our recording set-up. Masked and pantomiming hugs instead of giving out real ones, we were underway.
We tracked solid takes of a number of songs, and then overdubbed vocals, guitar, and bass at my place. I’d pass these to Dan and he would track his parts down in CA. All was well until the 2005 laptop I had Protools (recording software) on started to fail. Chuck told me about Logic Pro and I made the switch. Little did I know how this would… pan out (see what I did there?).
A couple weeks in with the new software, I realized I could connect my Dad’s old Korg T1 synthesizer, select various instruments, and it would score the part I played! I’ve always played by ear and have not learned how to read or write music – something I have always intended to change but haven’t yet. I decided to try something new and wrote string parts for the song Looking for Free for cello, viola and violin. Holy smokes, was I ever excited about this turn of events. It worked! I put the score in front of 3 real people and recorded them one at a time. You’ll hear some of this in the excerpt of the song in the crowdfunding video. That’s Annie Roberts on cello, Sarah Perlman on violin and Danielle McCutcheon on viola.
We’ve also had Dianne Krouse sit in on clarinet on Love Deserves the Crown, and Kevin Nortness plays alto sax on Slip Away Quietly. All in all I believe we have 12 or 13 songs tracked, and a few others waiting in the wings, demanding consideration. More songs than we would want to release on an album, we have some decisions to make. But before we go there, some other things have come to light.
Any musician who has multitracked (recorded a track by playing along with other prerecorded tracks) can tell you that you can lose some of the life of song this way. Even though things may be executed well, sometimes a song is missing some spirit if it’s too perfect and precious. A handful of the songs we have recorded warrant a new approach, and so the day after our Sugar Shack gig, we’re going into the studio with Martin to track a bunch of songs live. The goal is to avoid overdubbing and try to capture these songs in the wild, so to speak. We also want to go into the studio and work with Martin on replacing some of the vocal tracks we recorded at home. Honestly, he’s just the best and we feel these songs deserve his expertise. In addition to recording costs, we hope to raise funds for distribution and marketing.
So, there you have it. This is where we’re at with recording and why we’re crowdfunding. If you would like to contribute, we would be very appreciative. Thank you for your support.
– Joe Panzetta on behalf of the band: Rebekah Kuzma, Dan Tyack, Wesley Peterson and Chuck Keller.