Last week, Godfrey and Guy went into the studio to start recording our upcoming album, You and the Night. I was a bit nervous going into this. I've never organized a recording project of this size, and I wanted to make sure it went smoothly. I wrote the arrangements, printed out parts, and set an ambitious schedule for our first session. I had planned on laying down rough recordings for seven of the eleven songs, but we actually got through all eleven with five minutes to spare. Yay!
Although I was nervous in the days leading up to our first session, I felt relaxed and loose once we started recording. Truth be told, I had a lot of fun! If I had a bottomless bank account, I would have no trouble spending the money on extra studio time.
A few days after recording the basic instrumental tracks, we recorded the final vocal tracks. Normally, we would clean up the instrumentals first and save the vocals for last, but a Thursday night session would have wiped out some of our band members who have busy schedules. Lori and I recorded vocals last night, and it went very well. Lori sounds amazing! I feel my own vocal tracks could be better, not for lack of singing talent, but because I was coming down with a cold. I had a sore throat and was getting chills – not the most ideal recording situation. We had to rerecord a few spots because I would start coughing in mid-phrase. To the average listener, I probably sound fine, but I can hear all through my songs that I'm trying to hold back a cough. Once we've finished up all the recording sessions, I'll wait a week and take another listen. If I'm satisfied, great. If I feel I should give it another go, I'll schedule some more studio time when my voice is at full health.
I spent most of today listening to the rough mix, marking my musical scores when I heard something that needs fixing. It was very helpful to have a CD to take home. While in the studio, I was mostly focused on keeping things running smoothly and nailing my guitar parts, so naturally I wasn't hearing everything. Tomorrow, we'll all reconvene at 800 East Studios and clean up the instrumentals.
- Tom Godfrey
- Atlanta, GA, United States
- When I suffered a lip injury that ended my career as a classical trombonist, I thought my life as a musician was finished, but I fell in love with music all over again when Santa gave me a guitar for Christmas in 2003. Even as I was struggling with my first chords, I was planning a new performance career. As a trombonist, I performed with the Heritage of America Band at Langley Air Force Base, the Ohio Light Opera, and in pick-up bands for touring acts that included Rosemary Clooney, George Burns, and the Manhattan Transfer. Reborn as a jazz guitarist, I sing and play my own solo arrangements of jazz classics, am half of the Godfrey and Guy duo, and hold the guitar chair in the Sentimental Journey Orchestra. I have been a freelance music copyist since 1995 and have been music director at Northwest Unitarian Universalist Congregation since 2011.