THE MAKING OF (ALBUM TITLE UNKNOWN)
PART ONE OF (ALSO UNKNOWN)
It starts with drums. Recording always starts with drums. That is, long after writing started with a bunch of other things—snippets of lyrics collected from around the house, melodies floating in and out of the sound of an oscillating fan, chords formed by holding your fingers and wrist in new but familiar formations on a guitar, perfect notes carelessly selected by my daughter while perched on the piano bench. They all gather together slowly over time until suddenly it’s like everyone I know has decided to descend on my home unannounced to spend a holiday weekend.
That’s what the beginning of recording is at times—that awkward moment when you have to tell them all that, despite the fact that you love them all and that each one is dear to you, it’s too crowded and they simply must leave. But when all you’ve written finally leaves your head and gets on tape, it’s like you’re getting to meet them for the first time, and when it’s right they all get to live in the spare bedroom forever, and never get annoying.
When it’s right. When it’s wrong, they eat everything in the fridge and the pantry, they sit around naked on your furniture, they answer the phone and pretend to take orders for pizza, and worst of all, they refuse to leave.
I have a distinct desire to do some key things differently on this album, starting by taking more time on the writing. In the past I’ve started recording with little more than a basic idea that I really liked, and then allowed the recording process to shape the writing. I still like to leave a certain amount to the process, but I’ve really nailed down more of the primary structures than ever before, and I hope to find that limitation even more liberating.
But what I’m really looking for is transformation. Personal, musical, mental, spiritual, emotional, physical . . . I don’t think any part of me will be the same after this. I’m looking for something, and I expect to find it.
So like I said, it starts with drums. I have plans for some interesting experiments—mixing acoustic with electronic, digging deep for ambient sounds that make the stories in the songs come alive. I’ve learned a lot in the last year, and I want to keep pushing the envelope. I “hear” this album more clearly than anything before, and I can’t wait to listen to it.
All work and play makes David a happy boy.