In the studio today, mixing quartet tracks with Tony LaVorgna and Andy Bradley (engineer Wire Road Studios in Houston) and recording a few new originals with my Bedell Guitars Revolution prototype. I’m recording voice into a Neumann U87. The guitar is going into a stereo pair of Schoeps Mikrofone CMC641. Great sound! Can’t wait to share it with the world and all of our friends.
Missing also in the young person’s musical diet is a love of (or even mere exposure to) classical works. No allusion to the classics can be found in any — and I mean none at all — pop or jazz or showtune since 1968. This is something that must be remedied.
Sure you might find an exception to prove this generality technically wrong, like Disco Beethoven in 1976. But the point is this: the older writers of sophisticated popular music listened and learned extensively from great tradition.
Here is an example of wholesale copying! The music is ascribed to Paul Weston, but it’s clear where it comes from. When it was issued, I think most laymen who considered themselves musically literate would have known it is Chopin. And of course, the musicians, the composers, well, surely they did.
I’m grateful for our liberties, given by God, enshrined in our founding documents, because of which, given the sacrifices of those who came before, I can sing my own voice, without compulsion, any song I please to sing.
Not too many years ago, when I first heard her, I thought Judee Sill could not sing. I even thought, oh God, another hack. That plain tone, Ohio accent, the focus on the bridge of the nose… (Can you imagine me doing this as a younger man? I’m sure you can.)
But I listened again, almost in contradictory fashion to my own will, having heard something very close inside of me. And then her voice opened within me. Or should I say, I opened to her voice.
I had forbidden, for some reason, myself to be touched at the level she reached in the way she chose to reach it. I learned to listen differently, beyond the notes and the words, if I might say, without resistance.
That’s what I learned from Judee Sill. I am sure, from what I’ve read about her, that she would never have entertained the possibility that decades after her death anyone would remember her existence on this planet, or that someone might be improved by what she’d recorded so many years before.
Richie Kaye Music and AudioTheater Services LLC