Working on a limited release demo CD project mixing original songs with cover tunes. First up? A cover of Amy Grant’s Better Than A Hallelujah.
The songwriting craft evident in Hallelujah blows me away. The lyric is simple yet powerful. The melody just soars. Love it!
There’s no sense in copying Amy’s version, that’s pretty much a definitive performance so rather than attempt to emulate greatness, I want to do something different with it.
One thought was to make it much bigger sounding, over the top alt pop rock with distorted guitars, a full choir, big rock drums, etc.
But I decided while interesting to produce, going huge would lose the best quality this tune has going for it: simple understated beauty. So it will remain at about the same dynamic just a little more dense with a slightly bluesy lead vocal, some Hall & Oates style bgv’s (background vocals) and some unusual instrumentation. Exactly what, I’ll leave as a surprise for now and post an mp3 when the CD is finished.
In my research before charting I found an Amy Grant interview about the song I think you’d find interesting for a lot of reasons.
I also found the The Official Amy Grant Video of Better Than A Hallelujah Not too great of a discovery, Columbus’ place in history remains secure, it comes up 1st in Google, lol.
Beautiful the mess we are.
Congratulations to singer Camille Rae on her latest single, But I Want You, being added to CMT!
Camille singing on our client’s songs:
Nashville Trax music producer, Bill Watson, took a break today to meet with Songwriter Bobby Layton who stopped by to drop off 3 new tunes and talk music. He said he posted the first song Watson produced for him and his phone lit up immediately with calls from all over the U.S., best reaction he’s ever had to a song in his 12 years of writing, recording and pitching in Nashville.
Father and son duo, The Jailbirds, flew in from Germany to record 5 songs yesterday for their upcoming album.
Dirk played guitars, bass and percussion while his father, Walther, sang and occasionally added rhythm guitar. Great guys, good players, Walther sings great and somewhat surprisingly, they speak English very well.
What a fun session!. Tracking is complete, the project is ready to mix.
Other upcoming recording sessions with clients coming from overseas include clients from New Zealand (May 1st) and Australia (June 8th).
Feel free to post the mixes on the website. They really sound great, thanks again to both Shawn and you.
Best regards from Berlin,
Walther & Dirk
Looking to record a project in the Nashville, TN area? We can book your session, hire any needed Nashville based session musicians, help you arrange hotel accommodations, choose the proper facilities for recording, mixing and mastering each aspect of your project and more. Contact us at e-mail: email@example.com
Nashville Trax producer, Bill Watson was present yesterday to witness Nashville Trax’ client Wayne Patterson, and his trio partners, Krys Smith (left) and Mike Biasin ( rt) perform at the national finals of the NACMAI .
Singing to two of the 28 tracks Watson and his team produced, this Gospel trio has already won the local and state competitions. The winner will be announced this coming Sunday. (Update: After enough contestants to fill an entire week of competition, on Sunday, March 13, 2016 the trio won Gospel Band of the Year, Gospel Album of the Year, and Horizon award in the Gospel Song category.)
Unrelated to this competition, the trio also announced the signing of a nine month development deal with Big Noise records. The direction will be focused on “Gospel with a rock edge”. The label head, Al Gomes, who produced two Christina Aguilera singles and helped break her career. said the tracks they perform with are major label quality and agreed to Bill Watson of Nashville Trax continuing to produce the trio’s music.
Mr. Gomes other credits include Red Hot Chili Peppers, J. Geils Band, Paul Doucette of Matchbox 20 and he is on the nominating committee for The Grammy’s.
Dan Thompson’s just-released video of the song he wrote for his long haul trucker son who tragically died when he fell asleep and crashed his rig about two months after Dan wrote it. Dan and his band are “lip syncing” and “air guitaring” to the track the Nashville Trax A team played on.
This video was made after Dan’s first trip here to record his vocals on three Dan Thompson penned tunes that producer, Bill Watson, arranged and produced prior.
A simple-to-shoot-and-edit video like this can be posted on You Tube as Dan has done. It’s extremely useful for promotion of your live shows and adding fans to your database, or if you don’t perform, you can monetize the video itself and get paid for the short ads that run each time someone clicks on it. One of our clients has made several of these videos, hiring actors to perform in fairly elaborate videos to the tracks we produce of songs he writes. He has hundreds of thousands of You Tube clicks on several of them and has quite a successful business going.
2-23-16 Bill Watson (center) and Shawn Conley (center) producing/engineering Dan Thompson’s vocals on 5 additional tunes Dan (pictured left, in booth) wrote to complete the album. Dan has one more meeting to hopefully seal a distribution deal through Sony.
Above: Dan Thompson performing at The George Jones Entertainment Complex in downtown Nashville on 2-21-16.
Musicians who played on the music track used in the above video:
Drums and percussion: Jim Riley (Rascal Flatts)
Acoustic and Electric Guitars: Tom Wild, (B.J. Thomas, Mindy McCready, Brenda Lee)
Bass guitar: Bill Watson (producer, Nashville Trax)
Vocals: Dan Thompson
Piano: Ronald Fairchild, (Oak Ridge Boys)
Fiddle: Jenee Fleenor (Blake Shelton, The Voice. Reigning winner of the CMA Touring Musician of th Year Award, Dec. 2015)
Engineers: Bill Watson, Shawn Conley
Produced & Arranged by Bill Watson.
The song and video of “Miles and Miles” is © 2016 Dan Thompson. It’s posted here for demonstration of production values only. Any other use is a violation of U.S. and International copyright laws.
Congratulations to Canadian singer/songwriter Dan Thompson, who’s first single, “Miles and Miles” has been gaining traction on radio, first charting on the SOCAN Internet Radio Stations Top 40 Up and Coming list and now has migrated to the Traditional Country Top 40 Up and Coming chart.
If Miles & Miles climbs to the top of the up and coming Country charts (It’s currently sitting at number 28) the next progression is Bill Board top 40..
Miles and Miles was written and sung by Dan Thompson, produced by Bill Watson and recorded here at Nashville Trax.
Read more about the session here.
Here’s a preview of the Dan Thompson’s song Southern Shine, no vocals, unmixed raw tracks:
It may be his next single to be released to Canadian radio this coming spring, his current single, also produced here, “Miles and Miles” is enjoying over 2,000 spins per week.
Dan will be returning to the Nashville area in late February to add his vocals.
Drums: William Ellis (Montgomery Gentry)
Bass Guitar: Bill Watson (Nashville Trax producer)
Acoustic and Electric Guitars: Tom Wild (Nashville session guitarist)
Fiddle: Jenee Fleenor (Blake Shelton)
Banjo: Aaron McDaris (Rhonda Vincent)
Produced, arranged and engineered by Bill Watson
Call your local radio station in March and ask for Southern Shine by the Dan Thompson Band!
© 2016 Dan Thompson. Posted for demonstration only. Any other use is a violation of U.S. and International copyright law.
Songwriter Dan Thompson Visits Nashville To Record Vocal Tracks For His CD Album, 1st single getting radio adds daily, 23 stations yesterday!Posted: July 6, 2015
Hi all! A hit song in the making?
On 10-29-15 Nashville Trax received a request by a program director in the U.K. for a copy of Dan Thompson’s single release, “Miles and Miles” because she noticed it rising rapidly on the European Spin Scan (SOCAN) list. Nothing surprising, we get requests from music publishers, artists and record companies for client’s songs all the time.
But when we forwarded the PD’s request to Dan we discovered that due to Dan’s promotional efforts, the song, produced by Bill Watson of Nashville Trax, is being played on BBC radio, the largest station in the U.K., which has fueled the song’s addition to rotation on multiple stations.
How do you spell r-o-y-a-l-t-i-e-s?
This just in from Dan today:
“Yesterday (Nov. 3rd) Twenty-three traditional SOCAN reporting over-the-air and SOCAN reporting Internet radio stations in the U.S., Canada and Europe downloaded Miles and Miles for airplay use. Good reviews are coming in daily. A screen shot of the report is attached.”
Update from Dan: 12-3-15 “Miles & Miles is #2 on the top 10 Downloads on the STS tracking system. So going great, just need to finish the album!”
New Music Weekly, the #1 magazine serving the radio industry and music business, also did this press release on their site:
“Recording Artist, Danny Thompson is tearing up the air-waves once again with the title track release off his new album entitled: “Miles & Miles”. The current single, Miles & Miles, is receiving airplay all across Canada, England, North Ireland, Sweden, Poland, Australia, Switzerland, Japan and parts of the USA.
The new single has already positioned at 38 on the top 40 up and coming Country Internet Charts by STS USA, and is expected to move to the top 10 in the next couple of weeks.” N.M.W.
Editor’s note: Over the past few weeks Miles has risen from position 38, as of December 24th, it’s in position #3 . It’s also entered the top 40 AC/Hot AC main Charts, at #38 with over 2000 spins.
Exciting times for Dan!
Bill Watson, of Nashville Trax Recording Studios has produced client projects many ways: sometimes turnkey using session singers, never meeting the client; sometimes having the client in for the entire project from initial rhythm tracking to mix. In this case, Dan came to town for only the vocal session.
Dan sent, via e-mail, the mp3 roughs of three songs he penned to Watson, who wrote the arrangement, hired session players and produced the music. He then sent Dan a music mix to practice with. Dan then drove to the Nashville area from Canada (8 hours and only $70 in gas!).
Shawn Conley engineered while Watson coached/produced Dan’s vocal. The teamwork paid off with results so stunning that Dan has decided to move forward with a full CD album!
Here’s a clip of the song Dan penned for his son, a long haul trucker, who was tragically killed in an accident involving his rig just a few months after “Miles and Miles” was written:
Vocals: Dan Thompson
Drums: Jim Riley (Rascal Flatts)
Guitars: Tom Wild (B. J. Thomas, Mindy McCready, Brenda Lee)
Bass Guitar: Bill Watson (Nashville Trax’ producer)
Fiddle: Jenee Fleenor (Blake Shelton)
Tracking, Mix and Mastering Engineering: Bill Watson, Shawn Conley
Produced/Arranged: Bill Watson
And please do give a listen to Dan’s song from the same session, “Only Rednecks Do It Like That”:
As well as his traditional country song, “Our Love”:
*These mp3 samples will be louder in volume than most on this blog site because they went through the additional step of mastering.
** Only Rednecks Do It Like That, Our Love and Miles and Miles © 2015 Dan Thompson and are provided as a demonstration of production values only. Any other use violates U.S. and International copyright law. Requests for copies by program directors for radio rotation and requests by other parties interested in recording or performing these songs or using them in TV, film or other commercial use, e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org will be forwarded to the songwriter and/or publisher.
Pre-Production Started On 10 song album for Blues Guitarist Tony Pizzino. Bill Watson/Jack White co-producing.Posted: May 5, 2015
Pre-production has started for a 10 song album featuring blues guitarist Tony Pizzino and singer Grant Anderson. Bill Watson will be playing bass on it, as well as co-producing with Jack White, who will also be playing drums. Tony is flat out amazing on blues guitar and Grant has a unique, totally awesome voice that naturally leans toward blues They’ve both written some excellent songs for the project. Bill, Tony and Jack recorded test rhythm tracks back in August.
Update: This album is in progress. Several songs have been tracked and a Christian spinoff project is underway with a song titled “Finally Free” tracked and rough mixed, and another titled “Into The Light” being co-written by Bill and Grant.
It was a bit of a rush job, Nashville Trax was contacted by Marc in the morning and he needed to mix that afternoon. Our fiddle player, Jenee, happened to be available.
“Her playing is excellent and fit perfectly with this track. I look
Forward to future projects with you.” Marc
If you ever need him and you’re in the Ft. Lauderdale 33334 area, Marc does great work. We look forward to a long and prosperous relationship with him and 42nd Street Studios.
Take a quick look at the choices available at Vocal Tracks Online!
06-12-14 For Immediate Release:
Nashville Trax Launches Vocal Tracks Online!
Many self-producers and sometimes even experienced studio owner/producers don’t have the right singer available for a particular song. Vocal Tracks Online solves that problem by offering the client proven Nashville session singers over the Internet who can be added to their work by trading files online that lock right up to their project. It’s easy and it’s smart business!
The producer doesn’t have to “search and hope” by running Craigslist ads and other dubious singer search methods. They can get proven, reliable talent with great pitch and tremendous skills to make their singing choice a “sure thing” instead of an expensive shot in the dark.
Here’s one of our male vocalists, Jason, on a country ballad:
We have both male singers online and female singers online in almost any style a producer needs. If a producer needs a Jo Dee Messina style powerhouse modern country singer, they can Google “female country singer tracks online” and dial right into our site.
Pricing is reasonable and varies according to the singer’s experience; demand for their services; whether or not they do major label work and other factors.