GATES OF HECK STUDIO DIARY: DAYS 3 & 4

Everyone has different ideas about the impact of fashion on the arts and especially music. Naturally, performers are always trying to bring a unique look to their stage presence that authenticates the sounds they play and the words they sing (if there are words). I think these considerations of fashion also extend to the recording studio. When money is on the line, (metaphorically as well as literally speaking) the clothes I'm wearing should positively shape, not undercut, they way I perform even if there is no audience. This is probably a throwback to my church days when we dressed in our best clothes for Sunday morning services. It was part show of respect and part vanity fair. It also goes without saying that shoes should always be smart but I have a special reason for wearing my winkle-pickers in the studio. They make a resounding, audible slapping noise when keeping time with my feet. Try doing that with Nikes.

Winkle-pickers, pedals and poetry.

Winkle-pickers, pedals and poetry.

Matt Resovish is my sound engineer. Anyone who is at all familiar with the San Diego music scene will know his name and reputation. He's an experienced musician. He's also funny, and full of wit and insight on the subtle aspects of sound recording and performance. As he told me, live performance is like shouting out the window of a car as it drives by, whereas recording is more methodical and mediated. The more we talk the more I realize that the aesthetic principles of painting line up nicely with those of music and sound recording (two different things!). Here are some of the rules we've developed 1. Spill some milk on the turntable 2. Don't throw away any tracks 3. A restricted pallet can be more expressive than one with lots of different tones and sounds.

Matt Resovich and my Fender Acoustasonic.

Matt Resovich and my Fender Acoustasonic.