Notes From The Studio

Pics & Quotes from TagYerit recording sessions

August to December 1998

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Ever wondered what goes on in a recording studio? Between some of my other tasks, while working on TagYerit's second CD, I've done a little bit of recording of my own. These quotes are fairly random. In one sense they're completely representative, but in another way, they're pretty insignificant. As ephemera, they're by-products intended to disappear the moment they're spoken. But if this page accomplishes nothing else, it might inspire better relations between artists, engineers and producers. After all, if they know we're taking notes, maybe they'll behave themselves ...Naw, I guess not.
Go to TagYerit's Music page to hear some of the finished product.

Cast of Characters

Greg with his advisor

Greg Steele:(Seen here, consulting with his chief advisor) Owner and chief engineer Derek Studios in Dalton Massachusetts.
Credits include:
Arlo Guthrie: 5 albums including Alice's Restaurant Revisited and Woody's 20 Grow Big Songs (WB)
Dory Previn, Salamander Crossing ("Passion Train"), Ed Vadas ("Southside of 50"," Bluez.com"), Cheryl Wheeler, Aaron Schroeder, United Way


Producer hard at work

Ed Vadas: Producer credits include:
The Heavyweights - Bluez.com TagYerit - Heavy Construction, ...

Bandleader, singer, guitarist, harmonica player in the Fabulous Heavyweights
Warming up his sticks

Fred Hazelton: Session drummer and percussionist

The Fabulous Heavyweights (1997- ?)
       "Bluez.com" (1998)

yeP! (1992 - 1997)
       "Bosco's Magic Shop" (Live Double CD 1998)
       "yeP!onymous" (1995)
Contemplating the ceiling

Rich Newman:
Founding member of TagYerit
Bass player, chauffeur, acoustic guitarist, go-fer, songwriter
Flo at work

Flo:
Founding member of TagYerit
guitarists, vocalist, songwriter

Act I

Fred's drums were recorded August 25 - 27, 1998. Fred was isolated with his drum kit in a soundproof room. The picture window faced me (Rich). I was able to see Flo in a small room off to the left of the recording console and I could see Ed and Greg through their picture window. Flo, Fred and I each have a separate set of headphones to monitor the different tracks as well as communicate with each other. Greg and Ed use a "talk-back" mike (microphone) to communicate with us as well.

Ed (to Fred): "Just picture my face on the cymbals."
Fred: " Ah, now that's truly inspirational."
Greg: "Here's a marketing idea for Northampton. (Ed's hometown) Eddy's face on bicycle seats."

Greg looks at the lyrics to Embarrassed: "Is this a song that really need to be written?"
Rich:" It's too late."

Greg (to Flo): "It's a good thing you have Ed for producer in your search for self esteem"

Ed: "Freddy, I love the way you're smacking the f(expletive deleted)ing hi hat on this one."

Flo: "A little less guitar in the headphones"
Ed: (made some off hand comment that I missed)
Fred: "How about a little less c(expletive deleted)er in the headphones too."

Act II

Same as Act I, but without Fred

Ed (Re Dreading): "The front (of this song) has to be perfect, because it's going to be butt naked."

Greg: "The guitar is lined up in the middle between 2 channels. #8 is hard left, #9 is hard right"

Greg to Flo: "Your playing is all messy and girl-like."
Flo, meanwhile, is imagining the best order to dissect him.
Ed: "Those are weird notes. The mixolodian, up-your-ass notes."
Greg: "Robert Fripp couldn't play that. It'll be great on the Polynesian Tour. Get a copy of this to Dory (Previn)"
Greg: "What do you think about that one? Pretty ballsy for a girl."

Ed to either Rich or Flo, after innumerable false starts: "Wake me when you get it."

Greg (re:Music Makers): "I like the snare on this. It has a very 80's sound." (I don't know what he means, but that's an engineers ears for you.)

Ed (to Flo, as she lays down a guitar track): "Don't sing, it's messing you up. You big boingy."
Greg: "Here's that second vamp spot. Do you want to start from here?"
Ed: " It's like a Looney Tune's gone bad."

Greg: "Very close. Think Jeff Beck. Do you like Jeff Beck?"
Ed: "Wake me when you get this riff."
Greg: " Do you want more Fast Fret?"
Greg
: "See that. Shouldn't you be playing with the drums?"
Flo: " Rich, tell me when Greg gets condescending, and I'll punch him."
Greg (obviously not responding to Flo's comment): " Dig in. That gives you the power. Otherwise, you sound like a wimpy pinko commie."
Ed: "There's one note or chord there that has gnarly teeth."

Act III

Same as Act II. Just a different day. Some of these comments refer to some of Flo's secondary figures and overdubs.

Ed (to Greg): My voice is shot today, so don't make me have to yell. I'll just have to kick instead." Greg (notices an errant bass note & points to me): "We have to fix him here."

Greg (to Flo re: Music Makers): "A guy would be forced to play on the beat.
Ed: "Yeah, it's like you're playing all anticipations and retards."
Flo: "You mean I'm playing it wrong?"
Greg: "No, it's just your style."

Greg: "Don't make me have to do this twice."

Ed: "It's going to be like a boxing match, there are so many punches in here."
Greg (to Flo): "I bet you come here to feed your neuroses."

Ed (re: Tubeman): "When I first heard the part, I thought it was either weird or a mistake. Then she repeated it on every subsequent part."
Greg: "Do you like Devo?"
Flo: "Yeah!"
Ed: "What's that noise?"
Greg: "It sounds like a kid with wet sneakers."
Greg: "I would recommend you limit your caffeine intake, when you write these parts. And be careful, ginseng has a cumulative effect."

Greg: "You keep playing hotter. Wow! Have you been eating meat?"

Flo: "Don't laugh at me."
Ed: "Flo does everything, including providing comic relief."

Coda

So, while I've tried to capture fairly accurate quotes, don't forget that context is important in deciphering the personalities involved. If someone comes out sounding like they're mean spirited, prejudiced or overly dogmatic, then you may have missed the mischievous twinkle or the tired strain of a long day of concentration. We have all worked together before; the atmosphere is actually very conducive to creative output, and we hope to continue with future projects as well.
studio snapshots
TagYerit at work on their second CD "Tubeman" (tentative title)

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