So I had the coolest dream last night. I dreamt the I somehow got the chance to record an album with Nels Cline. We were at DNA Studios recording and he said that he liked the sounds I made. It was all really surreal, as most dreams are. Of course, near the end of the dream I made the mistake of expressing my awe of him. Thankfully all he said was, "Please, don't say that". I obliged him until my phone rang this morning.



So I'm on a little break from recording the soundtrack for CTM's production of Stuart Little. Just thought I'd write about the session a bit. Mark from The Selfish Gene is playing percussion. I'm really impressed with his playing. He's never heard any of the music until tonight and he's pulling out some really nice stuff. His time is impeccable also! Seems to be a very creative player.

Brennan Connors (sorry, no website, no link) is playing tenor, soprano sax and flute on the session. Brennan played with my group Tank! for a while before moving to Chicago to work on his degree at Roosevelt University. It's great to hang with him again. He's one of the best musicians I've ever played with and also one of the chillest cats ever. Very inspirational.

Gary from Tank! and The Dorothy Heralds is playing some trombone. Kevin from The Dorothy Heralds is playing midi files, etc. mostly. It's always a pleasure to hang and work with those guys. I guess that's why I work with them so much.

Slim from Good-N-Loud is engineering the session. I'm really beginning to like working with him. Great ears, funny guy and a great work ethic.
Anyway, the session's going smoothly and the beer is flowing freely. I'm sure some stories will come out of tonight, so stay tuned!


Derek Bailey is dead. Long live Derek Bailey!

I wasn't planning on posting another entry here until after the New Year, but the news of Derek Bailey's death came as a shock to me. I haven't followed his career that closely, but his book Improvisation had a huge impact on me. I'm not sure how it holds up as a scholarly work, but being shown how the thread of improvisation is woven throughout the history of music was a revelation for me.

I checked out some of his early recordings last night and I had another realization. Listening to his early recordings I finally was able to draw a line between his work and Bill Frisell's playing. This came as a complete surprise to me as I'd always wondered what Bill was channelling on the segues between tunes on his live trio album from the 80's. That album was a huge influence on me, both my approach to the instrument and conceptually. I'm still trying to figure out how to capture the beautiful abandon and angular melodicism displayed on that recording. This gives me another piece of the puzzle!

Rest in peace, Derek!

Derek Bailey's record label, Incus
Site with audio and video clips, etc.


Christmas Time Is Here

... and gone.

I had a great Christmas this year. I got to spend it with some of the most important people in my life for which I'm very thankful. I completed a short EP of Christmas carols arranged for solo guitar for my family. My parents seemed to enjoy it which was a bit of a confidence booster. While playing the CD for my family, my brother-in-law asked who it was. This also was a big confidence booster!

This time of year tends to be a time of reflection for me as I'm sure it is for many people. I feel pretty good about my acomplishments this past year and I'm looking forward to a very challenging 2006. Lots of plans to execute. Many opportunities to take advantage of and to create for myself. Here's a little peek into my plans for this next year.

  • Gigs, gigs, gigs

  • Recording a new Dorothy Heralds album

  • Recording the first Tank! album

  • Touring

  • Release of the new Josh Harty album, One Particular Day In December

  • Completing a rhythm guitar book

  • Starting school full time

  • More sound design work

I'll also be working on an album with Michelle Sawyer, the vocalist/percussionist in Tank!. You should check out her band Two Timer. They're a lot of fun and a great group of people.

I'm also looking forward to getting the website completed. I'm working hard on getting some lessons and audio up before going live. Also working on that damn press kit... blech!

Among other things of course.... See y'all next year!


Heh, so that's what blogs are about...

Not posting... ever....

Oh well, I've been working on my site at N8spg. I've had a lot happen in the past few months since my last post here. I won't try to get into it all, but for some highlights...

The first weekend in December I went up to Minneapolis to record the new Josh Harty album. It was a blast. A lot of crazy stuff happened that weekend. I haven't heard any of the mixes yet, but from what I did hear it's going to be pretty cool.

I've been working on music for the Madison Children's Theater's production of Stuart Little with Gary and Kevin from the Dorothy Heralds. That's taken up a lot of my time lately. The show opens Jan. 6th 2006. We'll be recording all next week most likely with Slim from Good-N-Loud. Slim's got a great ear and a pretty neat guy all around. He's also recording the pre-production demos for the Dorothies next album.

Other than that I've been keeping busy with transcriptions for my group, Tank!. I'm also working on an album of Christmas carols arranged for solo guitar, etc. I've also been reading a lot. The therapist I'm seeing has recommended a number of books, which I haven't gotten around to purchasing yet. She loaned me one that I'm almost done with. Thinking about one's personality and how you deal with the situations in your life has been sort of refreshing for me. It's amazing how you can feel a certain way about a decision or action, then you sit and look at it and your feelings about it tend to change. So much for the unreflected life....

So, that's all for now. I'm eagerly awaiting the Bill Frisell and John Zorn performances in Minneapolis next year.