Today was the first day for recording the new music projects, and I would consider it to be a very successful day. 

I started off the day by taking the 6:30am parish Mass (it had been a long time since I had a Mass that early, and I was a little nervous as to whether I would be up in time or not) and then was followed by some time in prayer.  Good way to start the day!

I arrived at ICON Music Productions at about 8:45am, got a little bit oriented and we were probably recording by around 9:15.  The first track that we recorded was the lead vocal for "The Name" (based on the Philippians hymn).  It took a couple takes to get my voice warmed up and the producer, David C. Smith, has been an excellent vocal coach.  He has a very good ear to when I am a little off pitch and instructed me that I had too much diction!  So I had to soften that up a bit.

The second song that we recorded was "Divine Mercy" the text of which is inspired by readings that we hear on the second Sunday of Easter.  We got my lead vocal down, then recorded the harmonica solo and then some harmonica background.  My harmonica playing seemed to be a little bit off today.  I think the solo was good, but the rest might yet need to be re-recorded.  This is my first time recording harmonica (and David's first time recording it too, whaddya know!), so I might have to get a few of the "nerves" out.  When then recorded my piano part, which had a few errors that can be fixed later.

Thirdly, we recorded "One Man", which is based on Romans 5.  I like the challenge of taking the most unlyrical Scripture passages and setting them to music (wait until we get to "Generations" based on Matthew's geneology--talk about an odd choice for a song!).  We got a good take of my lead vocal, but I was really having some troubles with my piano part on this song.  I felt that I had the song well-practiced, but for some reason my fingers weren't doing what they were supposed to.  Probably a combination of being tired, at a new piano, and just not quite ready for "prime time."  Hopefully we'll get it recorded by the end of the week. 

We then took a break for a couple hours or so.

I came back with good energy (plus a little help from some Mountain Dew!) and was ready to record "It's All Good" which sets Christology 101 to music (again, I like the challenge).  We really had fun with this one, and I think it will be a real treat on the album.  I also recorded a couple of the background vocals and some harmonica on this one.  Again, the harmonica didn't seem as good as it did back home.  We'll see how it sounds tomorrow.

The final song we recorded for the day was "Not My Will", which is a meditation on the craziness of Christ's sacrifice on the cross.  Time will tell, but this might be my favorite song from the album.  I think we got a good vocal on this, but as David said, we might need to take another listen in the morning.  We were both getting a little tired (I think him more than I).  Recording is a pretty tiring process.  I shared with David what I was thinking for the piano part, and we might hit that tomorrow (but who knows, I'll be here all week!)

All in all, I think that it was a very successful day.  David has been excellent to work with thus far and I think he is really bringing out the best in my music.  I'm excited to see what the next days will bring.

I've never really had the experience of recording over the course of several days before, but if it is like my experience with retreats, I think I will get more and more comfortable as the week goes along.  Tomorrow I will need to play some more instruments, something I have not done much of recording-wise, so I am excited (and a little bit nervous to do so).  I would like to get some of my acoustic guitar parts recorded tomorrow, and maybe I'll get the ukelele part down too.

Very fun.  Tune in for another report tomorrow


Fr. Kent



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