People are always interested in what we've been listening to lately. Most of what I listen to these days is whatever I happen to be working on at the moment. I suppose I'm risking becoming illiterate when it comes to the flavor of the day. I hear tons of cool stuff all the time without necessarily checking out who's doing it.
Meanwhile, I'm always in training and like to approach life as a student. There's so much cool stuff in the world to check out. I've been blowing a lot of money on just about every recording magazine and book there is out there. I've always been a music junkie and a gear-head. Ever since I was twelve I've been fascinated with recording devices. One year, for Christmas, a favorite uncle gave us kids a Wollensak reel to reel tape recorder. My brother and I just used that thing to death. After a few years it started making a really loud buzzing and static noise but it would promptly stop if you gave it a sharp smack on the side.
Now I've got myself thinking about my Uncle Bill. He was a great inspiration to me.
He was kind of famous in his own right and he had a Ferrari. A friggin' gorgeous red Italian sports car. Every time he came over we would make him open the hood and rev the engine and I would just soak up the noises of the spinning cam shafts and the flutes of the carburetors sucking in air for the hungry cylinders. Later when he'd leave I'd stand in the driveway and listen as he drove off. We lived on a back country road so he'd keep it kind of slow until he got to the big state road about a quarter of a mile away. Then we'd all smile at each other as we could hear that thing way off in the distance bellowing and shrieking as Uncle Bill took it up through the gears. It was one of the things that made up the DNA of my dreams and probably still does.
But anyway, I suppose I should be out checking out more of what's going on in the world record wise but I'm a bit wrapped up.
I have been going to a bunch of shows. I Saw Kings of Leon a few weeks ago. They played really tight. They totally get dynamics and how to structure their stuff so it translates. I've been a fan of theirs since the "Youth..." record. When I first got it I couldn't get over how that guy's voice sounds like an old mountain man that's experienced a lifetime of bootleg whiskey and hard times. I'm happy that they're having a lot of success now. I'm happy for them but mostly proud that this country can appreciate it on a mass scale. Just be careful, boys.....
I saw U2 the other night. Joe and I have been fans of theirs for a long time. Let me first say that they played great and I'm always impressed by just how many great songs they have and how good it feels to hear the texture of their sound. But the thing that got my jaw to drop was their production. It was on a scale that nobody's ever done and possibly never will again. I could describe it but it would probably be more accurate for people to just go on the web and find pictures of it. What I can say is that the effect of being up close to it is beyond massive. Before they went on I was wondering if they would fall into the trap of being spread out in different time zones on the huge circular ramp that surrounds the stage. But they did a great job of spending enough time as a unit on the main part of the stage. Very cool. Damn good performance by everyone on the band.
It was inspiring and I found myself in my studio working a little bit earlier than usual the next day.
I haven't been traveling a whole hell of a lot in the last couple of months. I've been healing up from my "non invasive surgery." I love that expression. I've rarely heard anything as brilliantly vague. At the time it's just what I wanted to convey. Let's just say that old prick Mr. C needed to get hit in the nose a few more times. He must not have liked it because he hasn't been seen.
People having been asking about my dog, Papaya. She's doing well but she still thinks she can fly even though she's blind. Maybe that's the trick.
The band has a few gigs coming up next month and then it's back into album mode. Let's just say that log pile is getting pretty high and we'll all keep chucking more onto it until it spills into plain sight. Keep believing folks, there's gonna be one.