Day 1: Making I Used To Be Sad & Then I Forgot

… and we’re in. First guitars for 9 out of 10 tracks are down already & sounding lovely. This is an acoustic guitar album, so this is an important foundation. I’ve heard some delicious warm wood tones coming from the monitors. Andy is a demon with a mouse, knows exactly where to place impenetrable metal objects & hang them all together with wires. It’s an archaic & esoteric skill, compressing, limiting, reverb, delay, EQ & channels & stuff. Thankfully, Andy just makes all that stuff happen so you can get on with playing.

Josienne is a sharp pointy stick with lovely soft edges; as the producer, she’s there to keep focus, get the result we discussed, keep the musical considerations of the songs front & centre, make decisions on direction, offer arrangement & technique support, throw in ideas if I’m fucking up, do it for me if I can’t, explain what I can’t to Andy, get it to sound right, be the energy in the room. It’s a role I wasn’t always sure I understood, but it all made sense to me like an earthquake during the tornado of the ‘In All Weather’ sessions.

I won’t forget her directing Dave Hamblett’s drums in the chorus of ‘If I Didn’t Mind’ from a shambolic & clever but complicated tangle into a strange & powerful pulsing drive with a flaw in the heart of the engine. There were a million other examples. It was a beautiful experience and she’s already taken a song of mine, entitled ‘Leaves’, which is so complicated, I can’t even play it properly it turns out, and has already made it sound like a beautiful epic.

Here’s a few snaps that JC took from the control room today.

Tomorrow, we start vocals. Think about that for a second. I’m gonna sing, in a studio, with Josienne Clarke in the next room, listening to every flaw.

Think of me…

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