Wednesday, August 15, 2007

The Oven

I'm taking advantage of a quiet few minutes while the work we did today backs up to a hard drive.

I don't know how many of you reading this are from the southeastern portion of the U.S., but if you are, you know the heat of which I will speak. According to, it was supposed to reach a high of 105 degrees in Nashville today. These may be normal temperatures for Hell, or maybe even Nevada, but for this sleepy southern metropolis, they are not. I've lived here ten years and I don't remember a heat wave coming close in temperature or duration.

Oh, the irony that these past few weeks have been spent at Gullahorn's studio, a studio that has a window air unit that must be turned off while we're recording. The unit (below)

is in close proximity to the microphone set up (below)

and squats there in the corner grinning at me while I sweat my way through guitar parts and vocals. I believe that once this record is finished the air in the room where the music is being played will actually rise in temperature, and the CD itself may condensate. Another aspect to this oven dilemma is that as the time spent on a song increases, as does the temperature, as does our misery, the guitar strings expand and slip out of tune. Today I was playing Eric Peters's new Taylor 12 string (a fine piece of work, like EP himself) on "All You'll Ever Need" and had to tune the thing probably ten times.

Ben just went home after playing me his newest song (and the final piece to his record--I was amazed as usual). Andy took off to take care of his kids. I'm here letting the files backup, reveling in the relative cool of the A/C unit.

The day consisted of:

--Jogging along Mill Creek at 8 in the morning, when the temperatures were a balmy 94. (I don't know how to put the little circle after the temperature.)

--Almost passing out.

--Listening to my kids recite Psalm 100 and sing "The Solid Rock", their verse and hymn for the week.

--Recording the guitar double for "Windows in the World". Doubling a guitar part, for those of you who care, is playing the exact same part as the original. Usually you pan it to one side and lower the volume a bit, producing the effect of a little bit of warmth and purpose to the first part. It makes the part sound like you meant to play it that way. Forgive me if I already wrote a bit about doubling, as it seems to me now like I have.

--Greeting the unsinkable Eric Peters upon his arrival at the studio.

--Hanging out for a few minutes with Will Sayles, drummer extraordinaire. He showed up at the studio as I was explaining the conspiracy theories about 9/11 to the Captains. I wasn't endorsing these theories; just recounting the crazy things I recently heard. I'm afraid Will now thinks that I'm an imbecile. A paranoid imbecile.

--A great lunch at the Copper Kettle, where we bumped into Goodgame and one of the pastors at my church.

--A fruitless search for a Vox Pathfinder guitar amp for Gully to use on the record. If anyone has one for sale, we're all ears.

--Seeing a guy with incredible 80's hair at one of the music stores.

--Recording 12 string geetar on "Hosea".

--Singing the vocals on "Hosea" and "Invisible God".

--Driving home from the studio listening to Jackson Browne, wishing I had half the singing voice he has.

Listening to: Jackson Browne - I'm Alive
via FoxyTunes


Kat Kamin said...

Totally know what you mean - it got up to like 76 in my office today... San Diego's miserable...

Matt McBrien said...

The little circle thing, as you call it, is made by holding down alt, and hitting 1 6 7 on that number pad on the right of your keyboard (º). There's a bunch of other random things you can also create in this manner... I particularly enjoy alt 1 4 (♫).

Andrew Peterson said...

Aha! I just found it. On my Macbook it's alt K.

By the way, as an addendum to my post, I'm sitting at my house sweltering because our A/C has stopped working. We just brought our sleeping kids downstairs to sleep on the couches. I guess this is what I get for complaining in the blog.

It's got to be 90˚ in here. (Note the little circle thingy.)

Anonymous said...

hey man! remember me?

anyway... i'm pretty sure i borrowed a vox pathfinder from andy o one time. he may still have it.

hope all is well.

info said...

Hey! Thanks a lot for the "recording studio tips"! I am working on the recording of my second album and I learn a lot on your blog. I can't wait to try guitar doubling...
I like the videos as well because I can see the mics you use, their position, etc. Sooo great!!! Thanks!!!!
By the way, thanks for your music. It has been of great help for me on my spiritual path. God bless you!

Rebekah said...

...and now I'm thankful for living in Canada where it is exactly 64.8....and no matter what I do, the 'puter won't let me make the little circle thing in this comment box. The funny thing is, I felt like complaining about the fact that in Southern Ontario we're in this weird time of year where it's not hot enough to make running the window air conditioners worth while, but it's not cool enough (or at least, my house doesn't cool down enough at night) to sleep in true comfort. For the record, my living room hovers between 78-80 because I refuse to get central air because it's such an energy waste (for those of us who don't live in ridiculous heat all the time!).


Doug said...

There are several Pathfinders on Ebay; I'm guessing you know that.

Happy to hear you're into JB; I've been a huge fan for many, many years. What were you listening to?

lyndsayslaten said...

rebekah - may you enjoy your ordinary life in your ordinary temperature. we southern americans are having our character built by learning how to put our seatbelts on without branding our fingers, how to breathe in air that's 1 part air/1 part steam, and how to fry eggs on our foreheads. (you know i love you, right?)

andy, as much as i'm loving this blog and learning little tidbits of wisdom (like doubling - brilliant!) and anticipating this new beautiful record, i must say that my favorite part of this entry is, "and the final piece to his [ben's] record". YAY! :) it excites me much.

John said...

Got Appendix M in the mail yesterday. It's great. Sun on the Moon is one of my favorite JT songs (especially on Live - Arnold McCuller - ooo yeah). You and your peeps did it justice.

eiszoe said...

So, how hard is it to double a guitar part? I would think it's tough to get it exactly right, not to mention variations in phase, latency (I really don't know what those terms mean). Any tricks you can share on doing it right?

2coopers said...

Ah...well the good news is that when you come to Little Rock in a couple of weeks, it may still be 105 degrees, maybe that....tell that Peters gu's not good news that an old grey haired man from Little Rock says hello

Zach said...

what jackson browne record were you listening to?

Drew Scott said...


We were in Montreal running a camp two weeks ago, and the temps were another story all together. Besides being in celsius (a lost cause for me since 4th grade), it was the hottest day of the year (record-setting) at 90-something... even hotter than Chattanooga on the same day! Not too hot for a southern fried chicken, but we did sleep on the top floor of an un-conditioned building. Ain't nothin like sleeping in a puddle at 87º!