Saturday, July 22, 2006

It's All Happening So Quickly

They say time speeds up as you get older, so I must be getting ancient because time is freakin' flyin'!

Got my planet ticket for Louisville, so I'm heading back up to Kentucky for Kentucky Music Weekend, which is an entirely different thing altogether. I sent an edit of the video footage I took during Kentucky Music Week to Nancy Barker, who is the administrator for the thang - and she definitely wanted me to come up and capture this show as well. It's a shame that over the past twenty years or so, no-one has archived any of these events, so we're looking to change all that now.

Michelle Bunker from Full Sail called and wanted to know if I'd like to book any recording time. If you're not familiar with the program - they invite artists into their multimillion dollar facility to record as part of the student's curriculum. You never know what you're going to get, depending on the aptitude of the class, but faithful bands and performers tend to get classes that are at the end of their sessions, thereby knowing a lot more than those who are just beginning. Mohave has spent dozens of hours at Full Sail (in fact, "Spider Rock" was completely recorded there), both in the recording studios and the live sound reinforcement studios across the street for both concert audio and video.

The dates I've got to work with are in first week of August (yikes!), so I've sort of had to scramble and take a closer look at what I'd like to record. These artist sessions are smaller deals than the full-fledged band sessions, so I'm only going in with Charles on harmonica and possibly a bass player, but more than likely not. If I go in prepared, I could probably knock out twenty pieces by myself and perhaps add a little something in overdubs - but the idea behind the solo album is to present the music as stripped-down and acoustic as possible, which means just dulcimer, a few songs that are dulcimer and vocals, and then a few with added elements like African tongue drum, jaw harp, etc. Still, in case I'm able to snag a bassist that quickly (and I mean stand-up bass), I'm charting out a few tunes to make everything go smoother.

In the meantime, with all this going on, I've been diligently working out my chops - learning new songs and going over and over and over the ones that I'm trying to get down. One of the techniques that I'm using is repeating phrases on different parts of the fretboard, first playing them as written or figured out, then playing them higher or on the bass string. I've never done much of that, since soloing wasn't really my thing, so getting to know the other octaves has been very eye-opening! I also discovered that the bridge and nut work that I had Patrick do the other day was too much and now I've got buzzing along the frets when I play higher than the seventh - so I'm going back todayy to have him correct that. Good thing I found out now and not while sitting there in the studio saying, "hell's bells!!"

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