Sunday, 31 March 2013

Our Easter Sunday Offering

Firstly, a little review of The Residence, Nantwich

We'd been asked by Al Dean to play this venue at rather short notice to himself, as he was compiling the programme for Nantwich Jazz Blues and Music Festival that very day... and always being the helpful souls that we are, we said yes... because we can... and to be honest, the venue didn't disappoint.
Through the Georgian front door (Which is huge!!) and into the reception area where we were to play, Al along with Tom Seals and his band, were packing away.. and I (Sheena), stood aghast at the beauty of the place... Ornate fireplace, marble checkered floor deep gray walls, purple curtains.. WOW! Anyway don't take my word for it, check out the website....

We did a full 2 hour set and despite us not thinking we did that well, we went down a storm. Lots of people waving, singing along and giving us the thumbs up.. What a warm and welcoming crowd! It can be said that Nantwich Jazz Blues and Music Festival is simply one of the best events in the country. The whole town comes alive... I even chatted to a woman who had travelled all the way from Bristol with her husband and she was extolling our virtues.. which was lovely to hear. Managed to catch the amazing "Zoot Serious and the Bellyful of Bop" too in the marquee... which got the crowd started, jumping and jiving!!

We're playing The Malbank on Monday, looking forward to that one too!

Studio Time

Well, while the majority of people are snuggled up watching TV and eating chocolate eggs on Easter Sunday, we went off to Tremolo Studios to do some more work on our tracks, which are taking shape nicely, I hasten to add. We were ably abetted in our shenanigans by Katharine Lousie Luff, an amazingly talented young lady (I know she'll blush at that!), who is an outstanding brass player.. Not content with just playing Euphonium, she plays trombone, trumpet and soprano cornet (and is rather handy on guitar and a few other instruments too)...Anyway, I digress.. The purpose of the exercise today was to put some "brass bits" in a couple of the tracks...

In the studio time takes on a life of its own... Before we knew it 3 hours had passed and we were nowhere near completing the brass bits on just one song!! However, once Katharine had worked her magic, and layered up the varying bits that she had composed, and we listened back to it... It sounded, well.. just beautiful!

Just leaving Dan to work a little more of his magic, and with Graeme's ear, trimming, switching and generally making the song fabulous. Its still not finished... sadly, we ran out of time today.. However, we'll be back in soon and generally get to work on the other tracks to create a CD worthy of the creativity involved in its inception.

Saturday, 23 March 2013

Rain in the studio on a snowy day.

Well, last night we traversed the snow and wind and made our way to Tremolo Studios in Silverdale where we began work on three new tracks.
We were joined in our little adventure by Richard Raizada (from Sons of Clogger).. who has helped us previously on a couple of tracks, and who we decided would provide a stable rhythm upon which we could place our tunes.
The evening started well, everyone wrapped up against the weather, emerging into the warmth of the studio and greeted with a nice hot cup of tea, and a very warm control room.. Just the thing when its wintery outside (despite it being spring!)
We spent the next couple of hours, recording, messing up, re-recording, and the like, such is the remit of any working artiste in the studio. Dan worked like a demon to mike everything up, and as always performed like a veritable wizard of the mixing desk. We had a strange set up, drums and guitar being recorded in the studio, whereas the vocals were recorded in the control room, so as not to "bleed" into the drum tracks.
Is quite amazing how much work goes into just putting down a blueprint track so that we can build upon it, layering vocals and guitars, adding in other instruments as and when, just to deliver something worthwhile ad enjoyable.
Once Rich had finished, he set off in the snow to his lovely warm home, while we stayed in the studio and listened through to what we'd done previously, two tracks nearly completed, another couple needing more musicians to add spice to the mix and then the vocals and guitars for the new tracks. Finally finishing off when we were all yawning and ready to go.. Tracks burned off for us to listen to and make notes of where we need to make changes, etc..
The recording studio really is a place where music can come alive, not in the same way that live music is alive and vital, but in a way where what starts as a simple tune with a vocal melody and a few chords really can take on a life of its own.
Watch this space for more news on our exploits.

Thursday, 21 March 2013

Here we are...

Here's a little foray into the wilderness that is the internet.

Check back here for gig dates, videos, music links and all manner of goodness.

We shall put a biography up and do all the admin stuff to make this a great little site..

Isn't the internet great?