The best laid plans, right?

I always have to remind myself when we start recording a new record that timelines and deadlines in creative projects are mostly for fools and dreamers. Being a certified dreamer, I know the flying machines may tumble when reality sets in. 

This is just an introduction to the record that is now taking shape at our little Rambleheart Studio, my man cave of possibilities behind the kitchen in our home. Susan gives me lots of room here for guitars (my obvious obsession), recording gear, and all our musical friends I drag into the fray. The sound of a full drum kit shaking the walls may be disturbing to our cat, Willie Nelson, but Ralph Power and Johnny Mack lay down some sweet grooves. I’ve got just enough space to accommodate the music and experimentation, and believe me, it’s all experimentation when we transition from our trio gig arrangements to a full band recording. 

This is all to say that we’ve begun recording again, and I couldn’t be happier or more anxious. We’re still whittling down our list of songs for a final cut, and the tracks we’ve started are sounding beautiful. The working title is “Where The Road Leads,” but in my mind it should be called “Where The Record Leads,” because I’m not certain just yet. If you’ve been to any of our show recently then you have a good idea of some of the songs that will make the cut. There will surprises, as well. I’m certain of that. Check back a little later for news on our progress. 

Last year I had the good fortune to record and play on a children’s CD here by Barbara Wilson-Clay and Jane Gillman, and Jane brought in Barbara Bergin for production on her debut CD. In early 2018, I expect to record an EP for the Voodudes ATX, a funky, rocking band I’m playing with around town. Everyone brings their A-Game when they come in, and the house fills with musical energy, the 60 cycle hum of amps, and sweat. It’s exhilarating and challenging, and I’m geared up for the task. 

I’ll keep you posted. Until then, we hope to see y’all around this ever changing town. 




Bottom of the Blues

“This thing has legs!” So they say when a new project takes off. It’s a fascinating journey throughout the long process of album conception on down to completion of mixing. Producing a record is a little like piloting a space ship that could easily veer off course to wind up in parts unknown. Reaching a conclusion … or a deadline … is usually the moment when you finally realize what you hold in your hands. This time we both couldn’t have been happier with the result. Bottom of the Blues is a record we want people to hear. We want people to hear what we’ve made here.

Big thanks and shout out to all our friends who contributed to make this such a rich experience, and hopefully a rich listen as well. Our home is our studio, as any of these players will attest, and there’s nothing finer for us than to have folks over for a session that includes food, drink, conversation, and music making. Thanks to Ed Friedland, David Carroll, Rich White, Johnny Mac, Jimmy Ruggiere, East Side Flash, Beth Chrisman, and Peter Schwarz, for all their ideas and passionate playing. These guys provided the richness and depth of musicianship that came to define this process. And, I need to give a big nod to Cris Burns for his expertise at the mixing station, his great ears, and his attention to detail. We were in good hands with him for the finishing touches and final polish on this one.

We hope you’ll give us a listen once again to see where this evolution is heading. Thanks to everyone who has come out to support us on this musical and human journey. See you ’round the town …

Mv & Sm
June, 2014