< Back to Journal

Recording Journal: Day 9

We planned to start recording early and make a day of it. I was worried about being late, so I made sure to set an alarm. Setting the alarm proved unnecessary, as I slept terribly, and woke up an hour and a half before it was set to go off. It's not my favorite way to start a day, but it is a way.

Once I arrived, Stephen informed me that he was sick. He wore a bandana in front of his face to try and make sure I didn't get sick (in case I started singing today). We got to work pretty quick. We started by going through what we'd already recorded, and polishing it up. It's not the most exciting thing to do, but it's necessary. It helped me get into the recording frame of mind.

Our first tracking of the day was the bass for the album's second to last song. I used the reverse Thunderbird. It went slow due to some tuning issues and being particular about the tones. I've noticed that we spend more time tracking parts that I can play correctly each time than we do on parts that are difficult. I think it's because then we feel like we can be picky.

We decided to tackle the bass for the last song on the album next. We tried to use the same bass we used in the previous song, but the tuning issues we magnified further because the bass is in drop D tuning. We ended up using a Danelectro bass. It was surprising to both of us since it's pretty tiny, and this song required a more solid tone. We only tested it out because the case was open. It wound up sounding great.

Tracking the song on bass went slow, but this time was due to experimentation. Both Stephen and I were wrapped up in trying different stuff since we wouldn't have additional chances on this album. That's one thing I really like about recording with Stephen. The atmosphere is real laid back, and he's open to trying whatever weird ideas people have. I think only one of the ideas we tried out today will make the cut. But it was fun to try stuff.

After that, Stephen's wife Laura brought us some tasty food and tea. She comes in and out while we record, and often has good input (she's a musician too).

After we finished eating, we thought it'd be a good idea to set up the guitar amps so we could start tracking the guitar. We're using my Marshall amp, which is cool because I rarely have opportunities to use it now. We mic'ed the amp with roughly a million microphones. I'm not sure what the purpose of each one was, but it sounded great, so I didn't care.

To start, we laid down the two major rhythm tracks for the first song on the album. As usual, there were issues tuning, but we were able to make it work. I just had to retune every 5 mins or so. The actual recording went smooth though. It was slow because of tuning and trying different ideas, but playing the parts went smooth.

After that, we called it a day. We didn't get to quite as much stuff as I think we had hoped, but it was still quite productive. And, hey, the bass is finished!