MY EVER CHANGING MOODS blog -- Finished and Ready to Press!! (Part 1)
3/23/2017 8:13:25 AM - It's finished!!!!!! As of Monday (June 4), the covers album, MY EVER CHANGING MOODS, is mastered and just made it to Japan.

What an amazing experience it was, working with the great musicians, engineers and others who were a part of the recording, ever a humbling experience. And learning the songs I've loved and admired all these years was awesome!

We had two days in March where we recorded three songs, then did the rest of the songs from mid May and spread out over two and a half weeks. As this is a completely acoustic album and to utilize the time and budget in the best way possible, three of the days were at Kaleidoscope Sounds in New Jersey to record the rhythm section while I sang along in the monitor booth with the guide vocals.

While most of the musicians were the same throughout the recording. I changed the bassist each day, inviting Latin jazz bassist John Benitez, Scott Colley on wood bass, and Fima Ephron on electric bass. It was my first time recording at Kaleidoscope. I was attracted to the studio because of the analogue vintage equipment they had for that warm sound I was seeking, and frankly the price was right. We had some issues with the headphones where the musicians had difficulty getting the right balance as they recorded, something that is crucial in a musician's recording so that they are comfortable and can groove and vibe to the take, and things took longer than they should have. Fortunately everyone's level of professionalism is sky high and we got through the songs usually after 3-4 takes with little fixes and overdubs. The hang was great! Everyone knew each other and were close through years of association in various groups (with the exception of Antonio Sanchez with Fima). At times I had a hard time focusing on the task at hand getting caught up in everyone's great senses of humor and comradery. Adam especially is a natural born comedian and I had to make sure I didn't lose my voice from laughing too much.

Once we got the Kaleidoscope sessions out and into more familiar surroundings, namely engineer Dave Darlington's home bass, Bass Hit Recording, where we did all the percussions and vocal overdubs, we were really delighted (and relieved!) at how great everything and everyone sounded. Vocal overdubs took about 4 days off and on. The weather had been yo-yoing around, hot on some days and chilly on others, plus the air conditioning was a bit strong at Kaleidoscope. As a result, I had developed a sore throat by the second day of the band sessions in May that I was trying to tame which later developed into a touch of laryngitis, lending a huskiness to my voice by the last day of vocal overdubs. But somehow I got through the songs.

Mixing was all done at a new studio Adam had introduced us to that had great vintage gear, One East. Recording and mixing on my favorite vintage boards such as API and Neve is such a thing of the past now with all the digital gear and studio downgrading as a result of low budgets, and this project was a real sonic luxury for me. Dave kept commenting how much fun he was having with the project. We literally went straight from mixing to mastering, ending Sunday night and going into mastering Monday morning. During mastering, I couldn't help but wish I had some time between takes and mixing, and then mastering, to live with everything and correct flaws. I found that I was out of tune in some places and could have executed things better, tweaked a balance or two. Overall, however, I'm happy with the way I sound, and extremely happy with the project.

(cont'd)
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