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Studio project--advanced stages


AnneS

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Well, things are beginning to take final shape. We had planned on several final mixing sessions this weekend, but 8" of snow and single-digit temps nixed those plans. Drat.

 

You may recall that my original intention was to give 6 songs the royal treatment but that the number grew to 11--just, because. The material was there, as was the will and the interest. So...

 

My producer (Bob) has been remixing the first six to bring them up to par with the last five, for which we felt we raised the bar a bit. He's almost done with those, and we still need to tweak to the mixes of the last five. But in the meantime...if you'd like to check on the progress, you can find all the current iterations here:

 

Anne's CD project

 

You can link to the lyrics, as well as to some scratch tracks. For comparisons between guitar/vocal-only tracks and more-fully produced tracks, check out the different versions each of Tribe, Loaded Dice and The Company I Keep. The fully produced tracks are really invigorating to me, as they pushed the songs to their fullest without (in my opinion) obliterating their essences. I'd be interested in your opinions?

 

Last month, I had two friends in the studio--one provided harmony vocals on The Curve and the other, electric lead on Tribe (plus four notes in Loaded Dice). Everything else you hear that's not me or them is Bob--keyboards, percussion, harmony vocals, accordion, harmonica and keyboard effects. (How lucky did I get?!?)

 

Within the next week or two, this puppy will be ready to send out for mastering! Crazy exciting--

 

Have a listen, if you like...let me know what you think, if you wish.

 

Always grateful... A

 

:rolleyes:

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Aw, thanks, Sal.

 

Truest North is the only track where I'm singing while playing. We decided against fooling with re-dubbing the vocals, and said "let's not mess it up." Glad you like...[smile]

 

 

 

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Thanks for listening and for the encouragement, guys.. Yes, it's nice to see the light at the end of the tunnel, and with each step, my excitement and satisfaction grow.

 

Nick--yes, Tribe is unsettling, indeed, and here's our hearty discussion about this one, just after I wrote it and posted the first draft:

 

http://forum.gibson.com/index.php?/topic/131743-tribe/page__p__1786820__fromsearch__1&do=findComment&comment=1786820

 

When I play this one at open mic, I always get comments from people, and not a few are of the "Oh, man, that song says it all!" variety (including one from a guy wearing a big ol' wooden cross around his neck). And that's fine; it means (I think) that I treated the subject honestly and without derision (I mean none). Maybe it means I got close to the answer to the question that troubled (and still troubles) me.

 

A friend referred to it as "your NRA song" just the other day. For a lot of us, the theme is, indeed, disturbing. As they say, though, you can't make this stuff up. [scared]

 

 

 

 

 

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I just re-read the original thread. The song provokes deep thoughts. And I don't mean Jack Handy. I mean soul searching.

There is an ex bond trader turned photojournalist named Chris Arnade. Look him up on Twitter. He just had a big article written about him in The NY Times or WSJ; can't remember which. But I have followed him for nearly two years now. He is liberal. And he called our election in early 2016. He travels around middle America fly-over zone. Dried up towns. Empty strip malls. Folks working 3 or 4 cruddy jobs. No healthcare. Mixed nationalitty backgrounds. They hang out in McDonalds and gab, because the diners downtown closed up. He had their pulse. The DNC sure didn't. And those folks have been lied to for decades. They wanted jobs and opportunity and they got lip service, ideology diversions, and an extra day of family leave.

I do believe we are in a sea change of times, just as many as some of my older brothers and sisters on this forum experienced 50years ago, just as I was crawling.

Yeah Anne. Thought provoking song.

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Hats off - this is very good and obviously a level above what you did a few years ago - congratulations.

I've only heard 2 tracks so far and it seems you have found a way to bend the traditional vein in your style toward something that isn't burdened by clichés.

A big step to accomplish - that place in midair between common roots and personal skies.

 

Slam ! , , , then I got thrown in to the theme and debate regarding Tribe. Had to take the side-road and found a thread totally missed last summer.

Now that changed my mood for romantic acoustic folklore.

 

Won't go into the discussion, as this should remain an unpolitical oasis (and I drive enough political exchanges in real life), but still have a few comments.

Tribe isn't just an innocent song. And its theme beyond doubt inclines for viewpoints like the ones from fx Sal and bbg in that other thread. No way around it.

 

Must say I took it as Sal (and Nick for that matter) - and this was before checking the debate. I can see what blindboygrunt means, but I also heard Anne's voice.

And to these receptors there was no distance in that performance. It came across as a confession in first person - a subjective almost therapeutic showing flag allowed into the writing as the song was born.

Now Anne is the artist here and she of course has the last word - but as a 'colleague' and veteran-listener in the genre, it - in all honesty - must be said, that I sensed loyalty in the interpretation. The singer didn't sound as a spectator; didn't reflect sub-facets like skepticism or position-questioning. To this set of ears, these lines came from heart, brain and soul.

Yes, I know - maybe it was just done very convincingly like a strong example of the art of method-acting - but even in that case the report seemed biased/weighted.

A bet was placed.

 

Well, well, well, , , everything tells me you did something important here, Anne. Else we wouldn't have raised voices, would we.

Look forward to go further down the repertoire. You are about to make one serious record

 

. . . . . . . . . . . Ain't it funny how you feel when you find out that it's real

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Neil Young

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***

Now Anne is the artist here and she of course has the last word - but as a 'colleague' and veteran-listener in the genre, it - in all honesty - must be said, that I sensed loyalty in the interpretation. The singer didn't sound as a spectator; didn't reflect sub-facets like skepticism or position-questioning. To this set of ears, these lines came from heart, brain and soul.

Yes, I know - maybe it was just done very convincingly like a strong example of the art of method-acting - but even in that case the report seemed biased/weighted.

A bet was placed.

Em7--thanks for your eloquent remarks (especially lovely is "that place in midair between common roots and personal skies." I'm honored...

 

And yes, there is no dramatic or other kind of space between the singer and the person "speaking" this song. I agree that the lines came from "heart, brain and soul," biased and weighted. On the one hand, I was trying to be inside of that person's head, to fully say what he/she has to say, and I wasn't trying to pretty it up or to filter or comment. I think that accounts for most of the immediacy.

 

But on the other hand, if I am honest, my own visceral response to even being in that space is to "tribe up" myself. It's a frightening place to be. But when I map out the effect of that fear, I can see and feel where it leads: to more of the same, to making me want to huddle up with my people, to sound a call, to take up arms. So in that way, I surely inhabited that very same space as the person whose voice you hear in the song.

 

As I've said elsewhere, the song was born of a bothering need to understand something I was not having any luck getting my brain around: what is it about being human that makes us react, when faced with substantially the same stimulus, in such diametrically opposite ways? There's something in the way we're wired to bond together for survival, I think, and that bond actually is big part of what makes us the same. Sheperding this song into being has, indeed, forced my brain into a different space about all of this.

 

Again, I thank all you guys for the discussion and the kind words.

 

"Music makes pictures and often tells stories; all of it magic and all of it true. And all of the pictures, all of the stories, all of the magic--the music is you."--J.D.

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Just great work Anne.Mature songwriting full of insight.Em7's description is a wonder in it's poetic accuracy

"that place in midair between common roots and personal skies".

Song order and Album art to think about!

 

 

I agree. Just don't get caught up in "stoking the star maker machinery

behind the popular song."

 

Don't worry, Anne. Folks here will keep your feet on the ground, whether you like it or not.

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It blows me away, Anne. Really good stuff. You've done an excellent job on this. Your vocals and guitar fit very well together. Extremely easy-on-the-ears and easy-to-listen-to, giving the listener the opportunity to clearly hear the words being sung in the gentle melodies. Your sincerity comes through. I truly like every one of the tracks. "Hey Dude" is likely still my favorite (liked it a lot from when you first put it on here), but each of your songs is a gem: something to be enjoyed again and again.....I think it's really cool that you stayed "you" in this project. There is a niche for this kind of music. There are lots of venues where people don't want their eardrums ruptured, and they didn't come to dance. They simply want to talk and listen. You sound great on this. Real glad this turned-out so good for you.

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Although I'm usually a die-hard low-fi, keep it simle and gritty advocate, you have just convinced me I need to be a record producer in my next life. The songs were always good, but the production really lets them shine. I will gladly purchase this CD once complete.

 

By the way, I think Em7 just gave you the perfect title, "Between Common Roots and Personal Skies."

 

Lars

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By the way, I think Em7 just gave you the perfect title, "Between Common Roots and Personal Skies."

Ouh thanx, Lars. But common would have to go.

 

Apart from that, I'm sure Anne has the right title comin' as we speak. A big decision to make - and entertaining in itself.

 

And Anne - thanx to you too for the reply. Won't go deeper into this now, but only add that I'm sure we underlined that songs are strong stuff.

Placing that subjective I or defining the position of the deliverer in general, is a highly interesting challenge in songwriting.

How far can you go and are there limits that can't be crossed. Social climbs/dives or the gender gap for instance.

 

I just heard Karen Carpenter's version of When a Man loves a Women, , , which is pretty special and actually needs some kind of filter.

The basic lyrics are so direct and confessing, but hearing a female sing it, places the reflecting spectator/teller in the equation. Artistic conflict ?

 

And stand in the same situation myself as I try to learn J. Mitchell's The Magdalene Laundries - a song in first person from a woman's point of view.

Not sure it can be done, , , then again maybe.

 

A song like Yesterday is different. There you just switch she with he and everything's fine.

Why he had to go I don't know he wouldn't say

 

But starting a tune with I was an unmarried girl - I just turned twenty-seven, , , , demands the guts of a man. .

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Emmylou crossed the gender gap to wonderful result, I think, with Mark Germino's "Broken Man's Lament."

 

And going the other direction, we all recall that John Prine is a famous old woman, named after his mother...

 

It can be done, but the candidates for such treatment require a delicious scrutiny, no?

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