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 Post subject: The New Cassandra!
PostPosted: Thu May 23, 2013 11:37 pm 
Cassandra

Featuring Sandy Wells on vocals and as always, impeccable production from Ron Howard. Sandy is a country singer from Colorado Springs that Ron somehow talked into doing backups on this song. I'm very flattered that she agreed to do it, and she sounds great. There is a link to her site on my blog on my website. There is a link to the video on the track.


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 Post subject: Re: The New Cassandra!
PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2013 2:01 am 
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And to think you were ever embarrassed to post vocals...You sound great!

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 Post subject: Re: The New Cassandra!
PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2013 12:58 pm 
Thanks! One of the first things Ron did (as any good producer should) was to tell me to shut up about hating my voice. The sentiment is common as dirt and will never go away completely. You just become less annoyed by it as time goes on. In fact, the most important thing producers do is look you in the eye (or at least over Skype) and ask you "Why?":

"Why do you hate your voice?"
"Why do you think this sounds good?"
"Why do you think this sounds bad?"
"Why did you violate the law of 3 on this song?"

"Why?" forces you to examine your creative decisions and choices. Producing includes but is not "about" engineering or mixing just as film directing includes but is not "about" editing or production design. It's "about" making sure that a story get's told in it's most effective manner. Making sure that the technical stuff is executed properly is part and parcel of the producing/directing process, but Ron (as well as Mike Senior's outstanding book "Mixing Secrets for the Small Studio") has taught me that the most important thing a producer can do is try to pull your head out of your subjective "I"m an ARTIST" ass and make you LISTEN and THINK.

Even if you don't agree with what they are saying, part of a producer's job is to keep you aware of your comfort zone and yank you the hell out of it when necessary because musicians often get so caught up in their own "sea of me" that they lose the ability to be good self editors and critical listeners. I'm not just talking about technical stuff like mix and balance, although a bad mix can kill interest in a good song almost immediately. I'm talking about thinking something through, not settling for good enough, and doing the work it takes to make something sound listenable and enjoyable instead of being lazy and letting something wonky, either from an engineering, arrangement, or (eek) both, standpoint, out of the house. Of course, you need to be able to know something sucks when it does, in fact, suck and we all have gigs of stuff in our DAWS that stink but we can't bring ourselves to delete because the just MIGHT be something in there that's salvageable. Sometimes there is, and sometimes you're better off hitting "delete".


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 Post subject: Re: The New Cassandra!
PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2013 3:04 pm 
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ElectroJoe wrote:
Thanks! One of the first things Ron did (as any good producer should) was to tell me to shut up about hating my voice. The sentiment is common as dirt and will never go away completely. You just become less annoyed by it as time goes on. In fact, the most important thing producers do is look you in the eye (or at least over Skype) and ask you "Why?":

"Why do you hate your voice?"
"Why do you think this sounds good?"
"Why do you think this sounds bad?"
"Why did you violate the law of 3 on this song?"

"Why?" forces you to examine your creative decisions and choices. Producing includes but is not "about" engineering or mixing just as film directing includes but is not "about" editing or production design. It's "about" making sure that a story get's told in it's most effective manner. Making sure that the technical stuff is executed properly is part and parcel of the producing/directing process, but Ron (as well as Mike Senior's outstanding book "Mixing Secrets for the Small Studio") has taught me that the most important thing a producer can do is try to pull your head out of your subjective "I"m an ARTIST" ass and make you LISTEN and THINK.

Even if you don't agree with what they are saying, part of a producer's job is to keep you aware of your comfort zone and yank you the hell out of it when necessary because musicians often get so caught up in their own "sea of me" that they lose the ability to be good self editors and critical listeners. I'm not just talking about technical stuff like mix and balance, although a bad mix can kill interest in a good song almost immediately. I'm talking about thinking something through, not settling for good enough, and doing the work it takes to make something sound listenable and enjoyable instead of being lazy and letting something wonky, either from an engineering, arrangement, or (eek) both, standpoint, out of the house. Of course, you need to be able to know something sucks when it does, in fact, suck and we all have gigs of stuff in our DAWS that stink but we can't bring ourselves to delete because the just MIGHT be something in there that's salvageable. Sometimes there is, and sometimes you're better off hitting "delete".


Some good advice there, Joe. I'll do my best to remember it when I start recording my own stuff :)

A master-stroke getting Sandy Wells to sing on Cassandra. She really helps lift the song.

Great work.......as always :wink: 8)

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 Post subject: Re: The New Cassandra!
PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2013 3:42 pm 
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ElectroJoe wrote:
"Why?" forces you to examine your creative decisions and choices. Producing includes but is not "about" engineering or mixing just as film directing includes but is not "about" editing or production design. It's "about" making sure that a story get's told in it's most effective manner. Making sure that the technical stuff is executed properly is part and parcel of the producing/directing process, but Ron (as well as Mike Senior's outstanding book "Mixing Secrets for the Small Studio") has taught me that the most important thing a producer can do is try to pull your head out of your subjective "I"m an ARTIST" ass and make you LISTEN and THINK.

Even if you don't agree with what they are saying, part of a producer's job is to keep you aware of your comfort zone and yank you the hell out of it when necessary because musicians often get so caught up in their own "sea of me" that they lose the ability to be good self editors and critical listeners. I'm not just talking about technical stuff like mix and balance, although a bad mix can kill interest in a good song almost immediately. I'm talking about thinking something through, not settling for good enough, and doing the work it takes to make something sound listenable and enjoyable instead of being lazy and letting something wonky, either from an engineering, arrangement, or (eek) both, standpoint, out of the house. Of course, you need to be able to know something sucks when it does, in fact, suck and we all have gigs of stuff in our DAWS that stink but we can't bring ourselves to delete because the just MIGHT be something in there that's salvageable. Sometimes there is, and sometimes you're better off hitting "delete".


Wise words, Joe...and GREAT song. I took a piece of advice, sometime ago, from a regular columnist for Sound on Sound magazine. He said something to the effect of "the difference between a top class production and a second rate one is simply attention to detail at every stage of the process".


John

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 Post subject: Re: The New Cassandra!
PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2013 3:49 pm 
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A groovy number, Joe. :)

Nice vocals.

A bit of nostalgia somewhere.

Nostalgia in the music, along the lines of how 'Suzie's On The Ball Now' by The 3 O'Clock is nostalgic for this listener.


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