So Dave is here, for what should be our last full guitar session. He spent 6 hours this week recording “Can She Excuse My Wrongs” on his own (recording John Dowland’s exact lute part was, I know, exacting and exhausting, and Oh my lord were the results worth it!). Today we’re recording “Hidden Gold”, re-doing “Bastard’s Tale” (applying what we’ve learned over two years recoding together), and hopefully adding a little ornamentation to Don Levey’s work on “Lady of the Rose”.
UPDATE: Close. Didn’t get to “Lady of the Rose”, and didn’t get all the “Bastard’s Tale” tracks done. But I now have the main instrument for every song on this album recorded.
In two weeks, Arden will be here to record/rework those songs as well. Depending on whether we can get that done in one or two sessions, that should close out his work on the album as well.
(Had a minor panic this morning that my MacBook Air wasn’t recognizing the Saffire Pro interface, but I figured out I just needed to update my software since we’d upgraded the OS. Ever the drama, but we’re managing it so far.)
More on album progress in a later post.
As Maistre Lucien de Pontivy of the East Kingdom and Mistress Sofia “Zsof” Tyzes of the Midrealm have now announced, I concluded my year of study with Lucien and began study with Zsof this past Twelfth Night. We had a lovely private ceremony of sorts between the three of us, with family present. Gifts and kind words were exchanged, and there was much embracing. I am incredibly grateful for both of these opportunities, and very filled-up emotionally.
Once upon a time–later. We had plans for Dave to come and do guitar tracks for some other songs, but fate (or the Mother Nature) had other plans. Freezing rain has made the roads deadly throughout our area. So I couldn’t even pick Dave up from the train. It also means our friends are stuck here with us all day. We’ve all agreed to make the best of unexpected circumstances.
So, I get a special silver lining. Finnguala (Nuri Olsen), having done a beautiful job with her pub sing vocals on “My Thirst”, has been collaborating with me on other songs that I was hoping to get female vocals for. She has an exquisite voice that is perfect for a couple of these songs…I did not realize she also had background in a Capella harmonizing and recording.
We have recorded a full vocal for the young girl in “Call Me Will”, and we’re planning some harmonies for “Lady of the Rose”, if time permits. Given the freeze warning keeps getting extended out, that might happen too.
The serendipity that has fallen my way on this project continues to startle me and fill me with gratitude.
Three very dear Scadian friends, all bards, stayed with us this weekend to attend the East Kingdom’s Twelfth Night event yesterday. The event was wonderful, and I will post more about it later. To my delight, they all agreed to provide backing vocals for the album recording of “My Thirst”, for which we’re trying to create a live pub sound. Arden was right: we can in fact build it track by track in the studio.
Okay, sound engineering all day is exhausting. But the instrumented track count now stands at 8 1/2 out of a possible 10 (one piece is spoken word, and I still have to finish writing the title track). Arden is amazing.
Took a while, I know. But it’s time for the final part of my 3-part reflections from last month’s Pennsic War.
So: “Ain’t We Sexy?” The great thing about Pennsic, as an extension of the SCA in general, is that, like other large-scale events, it showcases collaboration and teamwork, because it requires so much of it for anything to happen. My personal theme this Pennsic, I came to realize, was “belonging”, and I got to experience belonging. I got to see close-at-hand, and participate in, more of the making-it-happen than I ever have before this war. I am profoundly grateful for the opportunities to learn from and help to whatever degree all these amazing groups of people.
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Arden spent the day in the basement, where we finished the instrumentals for “Call Me Will” and, we’re pretty sure, put the instrumentals for “The Name of the King” together in one go. That’s six songs that are instrumentally complete (or very nearly). For an album that is going to have twelve tracks on it, that’s a significant milestone.
My new audio interface should arrive this week, which should (a) allow me to record in the basement with our new MacBook Air most anytime I want (the old Firebox interface is discontinued, so there’s no driver for it on the new machine), and (b) has a bit more power and some state-of-the-art preamps, and so should be able to produce rather sharper and cleaner recordings for a consumer-end product.
And yes, I still have one more blog post to complete on Pennsic. Real life got in the way for a few weeks, and I should have that posted this week.