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Is this still Nashville?


Steve Nathan

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If you'll forgive what seems like "horn tooting", it struck me on my way to work....

I'm in Nashville, Country Music capital of the world....and yet....

Today was more sessions with Lionel Richie. Yesterday afternoon, cutting Blues with guitarist Joe Bonamassa, and yesterday morning, tracking with the lead singer of the band Staind.

Not quite what you'd expect for Twangtown. :laugh:

 

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...wasn't Winwood recording there in the '80's ?

 

I'll not forget seeing Donna Summer in TPAC in '01 for the

Diana Krall show with the symphony.

 

It's been heading that way for a while; but it's "Music City" for sure, not just "Country Music City".

 

Enjoy the ride !!!...

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Congrats on the dates, Steve. :cool:

 

Let's face it, there are seismic shifts in the entire industry. Manhattan is becoming too expensive for much of today's leaner recording studio business, and a lot of cities up and down the east coast are picking up the slack. The union scene in LA is falling apart as people are recording orchestras in Baltic states, while other studio work--both music and film--is moving to Canada.

 

Nashville has great musicians, great engineers, and great studios. Why not record all kinds of music there?

 

Best,

 

Geoff

My Blue Someday appears on Apple Music | Spotify | YouTube | Amazon

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Congrats, Steve. I'm curious as to what Mr. RIchie is like to work with.

 

The union scene in LA is falling apart as people are recording orchestras in Baltic states, while other studio work--both music and film--is moving to Canada.

 

 

Salt Lake City picked up a lot. Seattle does a lot of non-union recording, much to the chagrin of the union honchos.

 

Any union members here probably got a ballot in the mail last week from the AFM. It's to vote on raising the work dues a quarter percent to help the recording scene. In other words, to help what they ruined. :rolleyes: The union has effectively killed orchestral soundtracks in the US, only a big-ticket project like a Spiderman could afford it. The rate is insanely high, the breaks too long, etc.

 

The "underground" rate in Seattle is $180 for a 3 hour session. While that's far from great, the union rate is at least 400 plus $25 in H/W , 10% pension, a minimum number of players, a contractor (making double) for each session, and a break that's an hour (meaning you get to record 2 hours in a 3 hour session). In addition, you're only allowed to record 15 minutes of music total in that period. And now, they want 100,000 people to pay higher dues to pay for the handful of musicians that affects. :rolleyes:

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Sugar Hill Records also moved from Durham to Nashville. Good for SHR, good for Nashville (if they notice), bad for us in Durham.

 

Sugar Hill -- is that country? Well, it kinda sorta useta be, and still is sometimes.

 

Personally, I love the melange that music has become, with so many different influences. I'd love living in Nashville.

 

On the other hand, a nice thing about Durham is it's small enough a pond that I can go to one blues jam session where the talent ranges from folks who hardly know the blues scale, to at least one guy at Steve's level (a R&RHOF inductee even). I suspect in Nashville I'd find myself limited to a lower tier.

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Last month when watching the CMT awards I starting thinking...

 

When I watch the Grammies from LA I see singers pretending to sing, a few musicians pretending to play, and a bunch of dancers on stage.

 

When I watch the CMT awards from Nashville I see singers singing, lots of musicians playing, and a string section instead of dancers.

 

I don't think Nashville is just the country music capital anymore.

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Bonamassa . . . I'm in awe.

Me too. What a player!

 

...wasn't Winwood recording there in the '80's ?

Lived here too, actually.

 

remember the Nashville Skyline album?

Indeed I do :cool:

 

Nashville has great musicians, great engineers, and great studios.
:thu:

 

I'm curious as to what Mr. RIchie is like to work with.

He could not be any nicer and is a pleasure to work with. Knows his stuff, is totally open to new ideas and player input, hears everything and shows immediate appreciation for even the subtlest parts. He played the piano on our cut of "Easy" (along with me on organ and Gordon Mote on Rhodes), and his pocket was perfect.

 

When I watch the Grammies from LA I see singers pretending to sing, a few musicians pretending to play, and a bunch of dancers on stage.

 

When I watch the CMT awards from Nashville I see singers singing, lots of musicians playing, and a string section instead of dancers.

 

While I can't say I always like every song or singer in Country music, I have to agree with you that the difference is blatantly obvious between the pop performers and the country ones. Nearly all Country singers sing live most of the time, and nearly all pop singers don't. Even the ones that can sing often don't because they have put the priority on dancing.

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Let's not hammer nails into the coffin on LA just yet. Yes, some gigs are leaving town, as I mentioned above; but that has more to do with economics than any lack of talent.

 

LA has all forms of pop/rock music, jazz, classical, music for film and television, video game music, sample library music, and more going for it. Artists from all over the world come here to make music that we never hear because it's not released here. You can't judge this place based on American pop music alone.

 

There are plenty of other great places to make music--and Nashville is one of the best--but so is LA! :thu:

 

Best,

 

Geoff

My Blue Someday appears on Apple Music | Spotify | YouTube | Amazon

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If you'll forgive what seems like "horn tooting", it struck me on my way to work....

I'm in Nashville, Country Music capital of the world....and yet....

Today was more sessions with Lionel Richie. Yesterday afternoon, cutting Blues with guitarist Joe Bonamassa, and yesterday morning, tracking with the lead singer of the band Staind.

Not quite what you'd expect for Twangtown. :laugh:

 

That's GREAT! Congrats! Hey, listen, if you ever need someone at any of those sessions to help watch let me know, I'm not THAT far away from Nashville! ;)

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Geoff,

Just to be clear, I did not post this in any way to make some sort of Nashville vs. LA talent/business comparison.

I was just noting how in this town so noted for Country music, a lot of non-country recording takes place. Most of my days are spent along side steels and fiddles, but once in a while I have a couple of days like last Mon/Tues, which were remarkable for their deviation from the norm (kinda like the day I tracked with Reba at 10AM and Megadeath at 2 :crazy: ).

It's true that a lot of "pop" folks have moved here (including Cain), but much of that is due to the uniqueness of Nashville's songwriting community.

 

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I once attended a surprise party at a banquet hall in Staten Island. One of these places where you have 5 parties going on in 5 different halls all at once.

 

On my way in I saw all these people wearing "country duds" - ten-gallon hats, rhinestones, roach killer boots, and even a guy sporting an authentic pastel blue "Nudie"!

 

I think the Mayan Doomsday Calendar or somewhere in Sanskrit it is written:

 

'The world will end when they start Barn dancin in Gumba ville"

 

 

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I once attended a surprise party at a banquet hall in Staten Island. One of these places where you have 5 parties going on in 5 different halls all at once.

 

On my way in I saw all these people wearing "country duds" - ten-gallon hats, rhinestones, roach killer boots, and even a guy sporting an authentic pastel blue "Nudie"!

 

I think the Mayan Doomsday Calendar or somewhere in Sanskrit it is written:

 

'The world will end when they start Barn dancin in Gumba ville"

 

I played in Savannah Civic Center, which has a concert hall and an arena under one roof. My side: Mozart Symphony #38. The other side: Motley Crue. :laugh:

 

Did another in Ft Worth TX, same situation. My side: Nutcracker, with lots of lil girls in pigtails etc. Other side: Gun show, lots of guys in camouflage. :laugh:

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Geoff,

Just to be clear, I did not post this in any way to make some sort of Nashville vs. LA talent/business comparison.

I was just noting how in this town so noted for Country music, a lot of non-country recording takes place. Most of my days are spent along side steels and fiddles, but once in a while I have a couple of days like last Mon/Tues, which were remarkable for their deviation from the norm (kinda like the day I tracked with Reba at 10AM and Megadeath at 2 :crazy: ).

It's true that a lot of "pop" folks have moved here (including Cain), but much of that is due to the uniqueness of Nashville's songwriting community.

No worries, Steve. That was clear to me from the start, and I'm genuinely happy for you.

 

Certainly what I wrote above about LA applies to Nashville as well: there's a lot more going on there than most people realize. I'm glad to see that things are thriving there. :cool:

 

Best,

 

Geoff

My Blue Someday appears on Apple Music | Spotify | YouTube | Amazon

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He played the piano on our cut of "Easy" (along with me on organ and Gordon Mote on Rhodes), and his pocket was perfect.

 

OK, I want that recording! Do you know the name of the project you are working on for that, Steve? I want get it when it's released...

 

That tune is one of my all-time favorites.

 

Have fun in those extremely enviable sessions! :thu:

 

--Dave

Make my funk the P-funk.

I wants to get funked up.

 

My Funk/Jam originals project: http://www.thefunkery.com/

 

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Steve, great topic and great post. I agree with you and have felt that way for quite a while. The Christian music scene has been there for a looong time now as well as other genres.

 

Actually, as I think about it, the lines between Country, Christian, Rock, and pop have seemed to blur in the past several years. I still don't hear a lot of steel guitar in anything other than twangy Country songs. (I know, there are a few exceptions) But for every Reba there are at least two Taylor Swift types in Country music singing more of a pop style and they ALL live in Nashville or nearby. That blurring is even more obvious when CMT Crossroads pairs someone like Reba with Kelly Clarkson. (BTW, they really went too far with Taylor Swift and Def Leppard - ugh!). And again, all that comes out of Nashville.

 

Actually Steve I am surprised to hear you say this now. You must have felt this way for quite a while, right?

 

Lou

---------------

To B-3 or not to B-3, that is the question.

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