Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Santa Fe CD 3, day one in the studio

I feel utterly privileged and blessed to get to witness this particular sausage being made. Wow. Today, at the UNLV studio, the cats laid down "work tracks" (a.k.a. "templates") of all 10 tunes that will comprise the new CD. Working against click tracks, nearly the entire band played and sang "live" (with the exception of Lenny, who has come down with a very bad cold, and Gabe, whose hand percussion was really not needed for these cuts). Phil couldn't be there, so Rob made a call, and Miguel Rodriguez came in to sub for him.

Some of the cuts went down in one take. No punch-ins or overdubs on anything. It was amazing to behold.

Rochon sat in the control room, playing without headphones, simply patched in to the board. Jerry, Jamie, and Tyriq played and sang from a small side room, Tony Davitch was in a vocal iso booth, Pepe played from the drum booth back to the left of the main room, and the rest of the cats were set up in the main studio room.

I only shot a handful of stills; didn't want to be a distraction, and the lighting is pretty dim anyway. Gil had a small HD video camera, and asked that I also shoot a bit of footage for some YouTube documentary clips, which I did. I have no clue as to whether they're worth a flip, having never seen the camera before.

The songs for the upcoming CD will be (in no particular order here):
  • What'cha Gonna Do With That Greazy Thing?
  • Love Jungle
  • Si Te Vas
  • Into the Light
  • Indian Summer Day
  • When the Curtain Goes Up...
  • Pack It Up
  • This Time
  • The Land of My Sun
  • Wishing Well
The latter being the only "cover" this time (props to our dear friend, the incredible Michael Ruff).

I had some other stuff to tend to, so I only stayed a few hours and didn't get to hear it all, but I can tell ya that, sitting in the control room listening to the rough tracking mix while they played, it is gonna be killer!
Even this "scratch tracks" mix sounded great, and the playing and singing was excellent (tight 10 a.m. throats notwithstanding).

I can safely predict that, given all these cats' devotion to writing/arranging/performance excellence, and Jerry's obsessive devotion to post-production engineering meticulousness, CD Number Three is gonna be simply breathtaking -- a thundering state of the art tour de force.

We are underway :)


First, The Cordle-Scott Band will be at The Orleans this weekend in Brendan's Pub, 9 pm. This is their final weekend there, so if you can get by, please do. One slammin' blues band.

Also, our Little Bro' Michael Grimm is at Green Valley Ranch tonight, 6:30 pm, in the Ovation Showroom. And, our Tony Davich will be performing with his classic rock group Phoenix at Red Rock this weekend.

And, of course, Santa Fe and The Fat City Horns take the stage at midnight tomorrow night in the Bonkerz room at Palace Station. Never a cover or minimum. Join us.



The uptick in Nevada unemployment looks to be attenuating (we're now at 10.6% officially for April), and The Peoples' Republic (CA) actually experienced a small decline from 11.2% in March to 11.0% in April. Unknown, though, is how much of the rate decrements are the result of people falling off the rolls as their unemployment benefits are exhausted with no jobs in sight. Michigan (where my sister lives) remains in a world of hurt.


THE R-J is running a nice article on Dian Diaz today. Very cool. Quoting Dian:
What's her secret for Las Vegas lounge longevity?

"You have to really have a passion for what you do," Diaz says. "I look at my job as not really a job. It's something that I would do for free. If you love something so much that you would do it for free, it's truly the best job you could ever have."

Yeah. What's the joke? "I get paid to move equipment, set it up, and tear it down. I play the music for free."

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