Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Recording - December 12

It's been a good few weeks in the studio, after a three month break to get some enthsiasm back we're back for the final push. First up was the piano part on 'City Streets', then Carly & Graeme came in & did backing vocals on all ten tracks.

Mixing 'City Streets'

Carly doing her thing

Below is the first early mix of City Streets. It's mixed at a low level so you may need to turn it up.

Nearly there! Only horns on 'Only a fool' and the final mix to come. It'll be good to have this album finished.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Alex Chilton - JJF

Alex Chilton's kick ass 1970 cover of the Stones' "Jumpin' Jack Flash". Lean & Mean..

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

A work of genius

Charley Patton - Pea Vine Blues. 1929

I think I heard the Pea Vine when it blowed
I think I heard the Pea Vine when it blowed
It blow just like my rider gettin' on board
Well, the levee sinkin', you know I, baby
 (spoken: Baby, you know I can't stay)
The levee is sinkin', Lord, you know I cannot stay
 I'm goin' up the country, mama, in a few more days
Yes, you know it, you know it,
  you know you done done me wrong
Yes, you know it, you know it,
you know you done done me wrong
Yes, you know it, you know it,
you know you done done me wrong
Yes, I cried last night and I ain't gonna cry anymore
I cried last night an' I, I ain't gonna cry anymore
'Cause the good book tells
us you've got to reap just what you sow
Stop your way o' livin' an' you won't...
(spoken: You won't have to cry no more, baby)
Stop your way o' livin' an' you won't have to cry no more
Stop your way o' livin' an' you won't have to cry no more
I think I heard the Pea Vine when it blowed
I think I heard Pea Vine when it blowed
She blowed just like she wasn't gonna blow no more

Monday, September 3, 2012

Mojo Acoustic - August 31 2012

Do It Right
Heavy Heart (You Am I)
Heavens Above
Relationship Blues
Kia Tatari Mou
Merry Go Round
Poison Tree

This was a fun set, I got Matt up for the first three tracks. He's really starting to get the harmonies down for 'Do it right' now and we managed to grab the audience right off the bat, which is always good. Next up was a cover of the band You Am I's 'Heavy Heart'

Matt bought his Uke along and played some improvised percussion which was cool & added some nice harmonies on the choruses. 'Heaven's Above' wasn't overly well received but it's really starting to reveal itself. Like 'Do it Right', I think it's going to take a few play through's before the song really reveals it's power, but it's coming. I believe in this track, I look forward to recording it. 'Lullaby' came & went, 'Relationship Blues' started  pulling the audience back into the set but surprisingly it was 'Kia Tatari Mou' which really pulled the crowd in. It was surprising because I've played it before & the Te Reo has completely alienated people. This time however it silenced the room & got the biggest applause of the night. Sometimes I just can't explain people's reaction to songs & this was one of those times. I've played this song many times both in English & Maori but I've never had a reaction like that for it. I kind of like the randomness of people's reactions, it gives things an unpredictable edge. Like when I feel I've played a song really well & it gets completely ignored : )

Merry Go Round is getting more & more fun to play. It has so many little bits & pieces to it it's always a challenge to play, which was kind of the point of writing it. It's a punchy song too so a good way to reach the audience. I finished with 'Poison Tree' which wasn't the finest rendition I've done but things were kind of going so well by this point it didn't really matter, everyone was just enjoying themselves, myself included.

Overall I give it a 7.5 out of 10. Started strongly, faded a little but brought it round & finished well.

I also played my first gig with the Polly Johnson Set but unfortunately with the adrenalin dump after my set I dropped back about three beers (too many!) and got lost at various points during the set, much to my embarrasment. I feel like I let the team down so will be looking to make that up to them. No more drinking until all my commitments are over!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Meow Cafe - Aug 09 2012

Polly Johnson, Ty Butterfield, Myself, Matt Reading

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Meow Cafe - 09 August 2012

Relationship Blues
Merry Go Round
Jimmy Jones
Poison Tree
Stones In My Passway
Do It Right
Together, Forever
Let Me Count The Ways (I Love You)

The night kicked off pretty good for me with one of my oldest friends surprising me by dropping in . He was down from Hamilton for work & saw my FB status update so called in. Shot bro! Unfortunately didn't catch a lot of Ruby James' set, but she seemed to be an earnest singer/songwriter (aren't we all!?). Nice voice. Mark & Carls played a good set, unfortuantely it took the sound guy about three tracks before he got them sorted, which I could tell was throwing the guys a little. Once they got going though they settles into their work. Once again Carly mesmerised when she was getting stuck into her tracks, particularly during a nice cover of Duffy's 'Warwick Avenue'. 

My set went well, it started a bit iffy, again with 'Relationship Blues' I blanked on the new lyrics. I finally wrote a third verse the night before so it was always going to be tough remembering the odd structure of the song and all the lyrics, but it was worth the risk as it could've been a nice opening track. Nevermind, it went ok but not spectacular. 'Merry Go Around' didn't really take off either but I wasn't losing the crowd so it was still there to be taken. I got Carly up next to do 'Jimmy' and our lack of practice showed a little. She kept signalling me to slow down & I think I kept speeding up, but we got through ok. Again, gotta be prepared for these things! The set really took off from here with 'Poison Tree' really hooking people in then 'Stones in my passway', which I dedicated to my buddy, keeping things going. It was the best I've played the song so far, it just flowed straight through me, no mistakes & really flew. It was a joy to play. It still amazes me everytime I hear or play a Robert Johnson song, the level of his talent. From there Matt got up & we ran through 'Do it right' which was also the best I/we have played this song, it felt like this is the first time the song has actually come through and been heard. Lastly, another a couple of friends got up, Polly & Ty & we played 'Together, Forever' & 'Let me count the ways' as a Uke four-tet. This was a lot of fun & got the crowd going & was a good way to finish. Overall I give the set a 7/10. Could've been higher if I didn't have the dodgy opening couple of songs but a good set I was happy with & the night really was succesful due to my old mate being there to experience it.

Next up, back at Mojo on the 31st.