For The Record
“For the Record” (2016), acoustic blues, dark and mostly miserable – but in a fun way!
This process is not very complicated, but it is easy for it to go wrong, so please do read the following:
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The download includes 11 MP3 tracks, PDF file of virtual CD cover etc. It’s also possible to download using the link that should arrive by email.
|Track 1 – Crossroads||Track 2 – CC Rider|
|Track 9 – How Long||Track 11 – Banks of the Blues|
Each of these pieces was recorded in a single take*. That doesn’t mean a first take, of course – I banged my head on the table a few times on the hunt for a version without bloopers. (Remember Bill Nighy as Billy Mack in the opening of Love Actually? Only less funny.) What it does mean is that, apart from a touch of reverb and some trimming, there are no tricks here. No multi-tracking. Tracks have not been spliced together, good bits taken from one place to cover mistakes made somewhere else… none of that! One microphone, one guitar, maybe a harmonica in a harness, and off we go. Again. What you hear is what it was.
* There is one obvious exception: “My Creole Belle”, where you will soon hear that I played the guitar more than once. This is the only one that consists of more than a single track.
|Crossroads||Based, of course, on a Robert Johnson number, with a groove inspired by Rory Block. The Crossroads is a dark and dangerous place.|
|CC Rider||Largely traditional. Scholars argue about what “CC” means, but a “rider” is pretty much a “squeeze”.|
|Special Rider||My take on Skip James’ take on a traditional theme. A song soaked in death and loneliness.|
|St James’ Infirmary||A visit to the mortuary then a long visit to a bar. Traditional song, traditional activities.|
|The Girl From Arkansas||Wistful – how sophisticated is that? Whatever did happen to her?|
|Refugee||I don’t have to explain how much misery refugees have to go through, in today’s world as in the past.|
|In the Pines||This one has innumerable versions, old and new. “The Pines” represent a place of darkness, cold and danger, an absence of love. The hectoring male voice plays against the sorrow of the luckless woman.|
|My Creole Belle||A simple love song, for a change.|
|How Long||Aka “Miserable Old Git Blues”.|
|Last Fair Deal Gone Down||A lot of input from Robert Johnson on this one, again.|
|Banks of the Blues||A version of an Irish folk tune, another version of which became a hymn tune, sliding over into a bit of blues and back again.|
All songs are traditional, arranged by Alex Wilding, except for Refugee and The Girl From Arkansas composed by Alex Wilding