Tuesday, April 1, 2008

"Sound on Sound 1978" - Track 1: "Besides Love You"

In 1978 I was a Junior in High School in Federal Way, WA and was writing a lot of songs, all of which I was certain were hits. In retrospect of course, some of them were actually pretty good and some of them were horrible.

In those days, other than large-scale recording studios like Bear Creek in Woodinville and some downtown Seattle ones who's names now esacpe me (one even partially owned by Heart!), the options for the young artist were only a couple - TASCAM or OTARI. Both companies made 4 and 8 track home multi-track machines, neither of which I could afford, being in the multi-thousand dollar price range.

What I could afford to do was trick a casette recorder into being a multi-track. If I recall the process, I would record a signal into, say the left stereo channel, then I would send the output of that channel to the right channel while I recorded a new part with it. This process could survive maybe 4-5 overdubs before the whole track was lost in hiss, but it was my first stab at making my own recordings and I remember having fun despite the noise of the tape. I was never good in those days at saturating the signal - it was always on the weak side - and that meant even more tape hiss!

But I WAS making recordings. I was following the footsteps of my heros. In my basement I had my own Abby Road and I was George Martin AND The Beatles all at once.

So, from 30 years ago, in a long, narrow basement room with no windows where a kid sat for hours plucking out tunes on a 1956 Gibson ES225, a Hofner violin bass, an Ibaznez Performer and cardboard boxes that served as drums; here's the first of the "Sound on Sound' sessions - a little offering I called, "Besides Love You".

Download "Besides Love You"
(right click the link above and "Save Target As..." to your local machine)