When I said “Tomorrow will be better,” I was saying it because in part I knew it to be true, in part it needed to be true, and in part because this has been the way it has been in Bosnia: alternating one day to the next between really horrible/confusing/interesting-in-a-bad-way and really fantastic/awesome/inspiring.
Yesterday I was all day in the studio, and it was amazing. My producer, Elvis (yes, Elvis), and I really clicked as of yesterday. We’re into the same music, he likes all my songs, I’m pretty good in the studio…he’s a bit of a scatter-brain, but he’s a musical genius (and only 23), so the combination is actually quite endearing, and besides, his energy is much needed and appreciated. Everything reminds him of a song, every music in every cafe or bar is up for analysis (in a good way, “Hear that? That’s so-and-so playing drums/keys/guitar on this song”). It is very cool. We were together yesterday from 11am-5am. His friends in town stop by and hang out, and we had a nice lunch with one of his friends in the afternoon and went to a couple bars at night with even more of his friends…all of whom are musicians. We’re also pretty much set to play my as-yet-unscheduled-but-promised first gig with a full band, with Elvis (on drums) and some number of his friends.
One thing was we ended up going by City Pub last night, which made me really uncomfortable, and we arrived during the last song of a set, and it was straight ahead funk/blues. I was like, “Why couldn’t we play that last night?” I explained the situation later to a friend, when we had finally moved on to another popular bar in town, that it was like that was my one chance, and those guys made it difficult on me, they put me in a position to fail. Like when you get a new job and no-one tells you anything about what you are supposed to do, they just drop a stack of folders on your desk and walk away. You spend the whole morning just trying to figure out how to log on to your computer. You are more than capable, but without at least a little bit of communication, you can’t even get started using your abilities. You were set up to fail. That’s how I felt about Wed. night.
Elvis is also a drummer first (although you will hear on the record, also an amazing keyboard player and guitar player), and we both agree that Dave Weckl is the best drummer around. Wed. night it really made warning bells ring when I brought a stack of CD’s over to City Pub for Darko and first thing, he sees the Weckl CD and said, “Weckl is shit.” I was like, “What? He’s a god!” and Darko proceeded to give me his “expert opinion” on Weckle (about the 10th thing I’ve heard his expert opinion on, this should have been another little warning bell). Last night it was confirmed by some friends that Darko is a man of exact/narrow expectations and firmly held opinions, and I just didn’t fit into that view. It’s cool. My “audition” gig the other night wasn’t about having fun sitting in with a bunch of loose cats, it was about I either fit that expectation or not. “We’re running out of the gate and try to keep up.” That’s cool, some musicians work that way, and that’s their perogative. But I learned alot and am no longer surprised about the no-communication issue.
After we had a beer at a different bar last night, we went back to the studio and cut the 4th and last track, I Really Need a Chorus. All night I had been arranging it in my head, so when we got back, even though we hadn’t finished Closed for the Year, I said we had to start on Chorus. Being in the studio has really got the creative juices flowing, and I’ve totally re-arranged the end of that tune to be something amazing. I’m really excited to make it happen. We were up until 4:30 recording drums, bass, hammond, and a wicked lead guitar (all done by Elvis). Today I need to get cleaned up and out of the house so we can get back to work. I’m actually hoping Elvis is already working…
I just wish I wasn’t recording during the hottest week in, like, Sarajevo history. I’m sweating all day every day. 36 degrees C yesterday.
But I’m really, really excited about these songs. I can’t wait to get this CD finished. But I don’t think I’ll be dropping off a copy for Darko to get his expert analysis. Ha!