In these days of being able to produce complete and listenable musical tracks all on your own with just ProTools and some reasonable keyboard chops it is incredibly refreshing to be in a studio session with six guys who can read anything put in front of them, swing hard, and have 25 years of good taste built in to their playing. Over the last two days I produced 9 tracks for the singer Dick Kaufmann. We played almost entirely live… ie everyone playing at once. with only one( I think) overdub. Everyone was playing great. In tune. Accurately. And the attention to detail was wonderful. Playing all the dynamic markings, the length of notes was carefully considered. It was great to hear the question: Do you want us off on “1″ or the ” and of 4?” . I wonder if everyone appreciates this sort of stylish competence nowadays. I must sound like a very old dude to be talking like this. But as all of you who follow this blog ( 3) know, my heart and my soul are locked in a time-warp landing me squarely ( or very hipply) in Capitol Recording Studios in 1962. Last night’s session sounded like a small group June Christy session. I have a record called “June’s got Rhythm that is beautiful collection of playing, singing and recording. Every one of the musicians from last night play just as well as the players on that date. Tommy Barrick on drums….. Shelley Mann has got nothing on him ( except for maybe a cooler name) Pete Ostle on bass did not scratch a note in two days of playing. Tom Williams on trumpet was just beautiful. Jeff Gray’s tenor sax and clarinet work was superb. And notably, their ensemble playing was right in tune. I played the piano parts and felt like I couldn’t miss with a rhythm section like Tommy and Pete swinging away . Jerry Lynn on guitar added the perfect Freddie Green chug to it all.
We are all going to be playing with Dick in the Fall. I’ll keep you posted.