We’ve got something from both the band and Alex on the first full day of recording with Duane at Shangri-la Productions.
First up, here’s what happened with the band . . .
The Jam Alker Band’s First Day at the Studio
It took over two hours to set the drum set up, mic it all and get the sound we wanted. It was way worth the time. The sound is fat, deep, and penetrating.
Now we are moving onto setup of the guitars. Terry and Ryan are using Vox and Fender amps. They also have a ton of effects. Ryan loves his Pog. Terry has his OCD and Cry Baby. They are happy.
Alex is running direct with a tube preamp from the 70s.
Duane really knows what he is doing. He is open to our sounds and ideas but also adds his input to make us better.
Everyone set, now working on our first song, “Riot.” It’s a power song with tons of guitars. Terry and Ryan are wailin’! We are getting sounds down now and balances.
Got the drums and bass down on “Riot”. Alex is playing some sweet bass. His licks are right on!
We reconstructed on reworked the song “Consume.” It has and is consuming us, but it’s a good thing because where we got it to is better than it has ever been. Duane really knows what we wanted from the song and what the song still needs. Today was a very productive day. Yea!
And now, we have bassist Alex’s thoughts . . .
Reflections after Day One.
It’s apparent that the work we’ve done as a group and as individuals leading up to this recording session will pay dividends beyond what could have ever hoped. Having worked these songs day in and day out, reshaping them, exploring their deep corners and potentialities, learning them backwards and forward, we’re free to allow Duane to bring his insights, his ear, his experience, and his spirit to bear. We’re in the perfect position to see this music with fresh eyes and an open heart via Duane.
I’m already feeling the beginning of something very special, something sought after but seldom attained, where everyone involved in a creative undertaking aligns their hearts and minds. We are beginning the rite that is the pursuit of transcendence and achieved via collaborative creation. It’s difficult to describe, but it’s what I pursue constantly, and it is what motivates me as a musician. By working with like-minded explorers, through dedication and collaboration, we may be able to experience the oneness that comes with truly inhabiting and transmitting these songs.
These songs aren’t just Jamie’s story, nor just Tom’s story, Terry’s story, Ryan’s story, my story. These songs exist. Like a force of nature, like the moon , like gravity brings the Earth round the sun. These songs are existence itself because they are true songs, they are songs born out of suffering and the transcendence of suffering. We’ve sacrificed to be where we are doing what we do, as everyone else in their own way has, unique but universal—that is the expression of and the transcendence of suffering. I hope we channel the universe and let it rock!
Photos by Karen Rettig Photography.