Hi boys and girls,
Some of you may, others may not, know that i finished up vocals on the record a week or so ago. We decided to go for that up-front, brutally honest, singer songwriter style vocal track. No backing vocals. A decision some might not agree with, though i think it works incredibly well to create that vulnerable, debut album feel. A sort of, starting out emotion. It should all make perfect sense once you’ve had your first listen through.
Speaking of which, last week i spent a little over three hours with the team at EMI listening to all of the final pre-mix edits, a more than nerve-racking task, i might add. I sat down and played them everything i had, explaining, for the first time, where my inspiration came from, what each song means to me and how i feel now, having recorded them. This is something i don’t usually delve into… well, not in any incredible depth. It was liberating, and the fact that they loved what they heard was cause for a much needed sigh of relief. Having them love the songs was one of the greatest validations i’ve received since heading over to Vegas to record my EP back in 2010. Turns out I may not be so bad at this music thing after all, go figure.
On a side note: for those who don’t know, a pre-mix edit is a version of a song prior to it being mixed. If you were to hear a song at this stage, you would easily understand the artist’s emotional intention. Song structure, melody, lyrics, etc… they’re all present, however the song is still a LONG way off its final sound. The idea is to have a great sounding pre-mix because, in theory, it can only get better.
Another main goal for the listening session with the EMI gang was to select the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, etc… singles for priority mixing. If i told you this was an easy task, i would be lying and not for the reasons you might think. In many instances an album has an obvious 1st single choice, usually the one track that has an apparent “radio-friendly” aspect, coupled with an album leading quality. That’s not to say my album has none of these, in fact it’s quite the opposite. At the risk of sounding like an overly confident douche, we found it tough to choose a 1st single because, apparently, my album is littered with possibilities. The difference between these possibilities lie within their power to steer my budding career in different musical directions. The problem we had was not one of sonic strength, but one of sonic mood. It’s the hardest thing to try and anticipate public response. Do we open with an up-tempo Motown tune or a ballad? Do we go for the song with a no-brainer radio chorus, or the song with a killer groove? At the end of the day, all of my songs will have their very own spotlight moment, whether it’s on the airwaves or through your earbuds. I’m not too phased.
However, after much thought, and multiple listens, the marketing crew at EMI decided to go with Crayon Boxes as the 1st single! I kinda like this idea, after all it is the title of the album (two bombshells in one update, damn). Also, it has a certain safe-uniqueness to it. I think you’re gonna love it! And if you don’t, there’s always the rest of the album ;)
Which leads us to the here and now. Currently we’re waiting, with baited breath, for Crayon Boxes (the tune) to return from its time in Los Angeles. It is, at this very moment, undergoing its mixing makeover. I can’t wait to hear which direction Mark and Will decide to take with this song!
Stay with me, things are heating up.
And just like that, all album tracks, save for one, have newly recorded vocals. After a rather shaky start on Monday, in my opinion, i managed to pull it together quite nicely these last few days. Actually, I ended up finishing pretty damn strong! If i may be so bold.
Tomorrow is my final session in connection with this album. I can’t believe it has finally arrived. I’m using it to record “Sexy Devil Woman Child” live, raw and honest. No mask, no pretense, just me and my Strat. I love the idea of having an album track that captures that “real” feel to it. Hopefully i can get exactly that tomorrow…
Wish me luck.
PS. I’ll write a complete update on the events of this last week within the next couple days. Stay with me.