Sunday, January 5, 2014

Playing Piccolo

I’ve been many times to many different recording studios, but hanging out at Studio Piccolo always seems to stand out. It’s a nice place, with nice people. Thanks to Rene for setting up my latest session there and thanks to audio engineer, Pierre Messier, for making the creative process the very best experience possible.

One of my work buddies was part of this latest session. Alain Marcil is an engineer at Global Montreal, but he’s also an accomplished musician. He played bass, mandolin and ukulele on the tunes I recorded. Also along for the first time was my son, Tristan. It was incredibly special to have him record at Piccolo!

Making music
The cover tune I posted on youtube this summer, “Mad World”, seems to be getting more attention than the two original songs I posted, so I decided to prepare a couple of new cover versions. I had recorded a version of Chantal Kreviazuk’s awesome song, “Invincible”, during my last session, but didn’t make a video. At Piccolo this time around, I decided to do a video of my version of the song and Alain contributes bass and a jovial, grooving ukulele to the track!

I’ve always appreciated Bruce Hornsby’s “Mandolin Rain” and decided to do a version of it at Piccolo. Alain plays bass and mandolin on the song.

I had asked my son if he’d contribute a rap to one of my original songs. He said he would, so I wrote a tune last month called “Cool Beans”and we just recorded it. It’s a lighthearted romp based on a phrase my son has occasionally and mystifyingly dropped on me! I've loaded the track into my ipod, where the listing reads, "Cool Beans (feat. Bobby Button)"!

Including prep and mixing time, we were at Piccolo for twelve hours straight! For musicians like myself and Alain, the time goes by in the blink of an eye! I have a feeling it doesn’t go by at quite the same speed for Pierre and yet, through it all, he was patient, professional and happy to lend his production genius to our project! He has a great sense of humor and witnesses will confirm he’s quite a dancer!

Alain, Tristan and, on my left, Pierre
I always want to do too much when I go in the studio and, typically, due to budget and temporal restrictions, the finished songs are not quite what I had in mind but, thanks to Alain, Tristan and Pierre, an absolute delight to create!

Under Randy's watchful eye
One of Tristan’s buddies, Randy Satandrea, contributed his creative eye for pictures and eventual videos, which I hope to post to youtube in the coming weeks!

If you’ve given my stuff a view on youtube, thanks, it's always gratifying to be able to share the music.

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