Bill Watson Produces Three Vocal Tracks at Red Alert Recording Studio in Gallatin, Tn, Shawn Conley EngineeringPosted: May 29, 2015
This past week, Nashville Trax producer, Bill Watson, carrying a portable hard drive loaded with tracks for three songs he arranged and tracked at Nashville Trax, uploaded them into a Pro Tools rig at Red Alert Studios in Gallatin Tn, part of a collaborative effort between Watson and engineer Shawn Conley.
Once the tracks were prepped Watson and Conley teamed up to record, engineer and produce singer Dan Thompson as he sang vocals for his new album which is projected to receive airplay in Canada.
Although Dan was well rehearsed and had the songs he’d penned “down pat” each song took a little over an hour to record with multiple takes and phrase-by-phrase instruction on timing and pitch.
Here’s a clip of one song done at the session titled “Our Love”
Our Love is © 2015 Dan Thompson. Produced by Bill Watson for Nashville Trax.
Engineers: Bill Watson, Shawn Conley, Vocals: Dan Thompson. Musicians: Jim Riley (of Rascal Flatts) drums; Tom Wild (of B.J. Thomas’ band) rhythm and lead guitars; Jenee Fleenor (Blake Shelton) fiddle, Mike Douchette (steel guitar); Bill Watson, bass guitar; Ron Fairchild (Oak Ridge Boys) Piano.
If your project needs excellent pedal steel guitar, rather than hire a local player consider getting your steel guitar tracks over the Internet.
Because there are no frets steel can be pitchy. Because steel can be hard to control, it needs to be played evenly and smoothly. Because steel needs to fit into a track like a hand in a glove you need a player with extensive experience at doing just that. And because tone quality is everything.
To get all that you need a Nashville session quality player. Our pedal steel player, Mr. Mike, available through our Nashville Trax Recording Studio service, Steel Guitar Tracks Online, is your guy. He delivers world class tracks on demand. His resume is so extensive it would require pages to list every famous artist he’s worked with but a few of his performance and recording credits include: Bonnie Raitt, George Jones, Tammy Wynette, Peter Frampton, ZZ Top, Conway Twitty, Neil Young…some of the true legends of rock, blues, folk and country.
Here’s Mike just ten days ago getting cued by Billy Gibbons to play a solo in ZZ Top’s “La Grange” with Peter Frampton and Randy Bachman (BTO) staring him down. He nails it, of course. The pedal steel solo begins at 5:18:
Like everyone who is a regular on the roster here, Mike is a Christian and well knows his talent is a God-given gift. If you’re a player wondering how you can have a career like Mike’s don’t emulate his playing, develop your style and emulate his faith in God. It’s He who makes amazing things happen.
Wow! A truly fantastic day today tracking the first songs for the Kerry McFate CD at Nashville Trax. Two days of rain welcoming him to Nashville couldn’t dampen his enthusiasm that only increased as the recording progressed. Kerry ended that evening with, “Bill, this is way beyond anything I could have possibly imagined, just incredible, I’m so excited!”
Drummer David Northrup laid down fabulous tracks, including a couple of country shuffle beats, for Tom Wild, Wanda Vick, Mike Douchette and other session players to build on. As always, the Nashville Trax studio drum kit sounds were killer.
Kerry played his new Taylor acoustic purchased just for the session. It was routed through the Avantone CK-7 large diaphragm microphone plugged into the Avalon compressor/preamp, a combination I’ve come to rely on for acoustic instruments and it produced the rich, full bodied sound with excellent articulation it always does. We’re getting a reputation for delivering excellent acoustic guitar, fiddle, dobro and mandolin sounds.
Part of the fun for clients coming in to town is hanging out with the session players between takes. Kerry was treated to stories from David about his recent gigs with Wynonna and other artists, a story from Mike Douchette about how, back in the day, a master tape with hundreds of thousands of dollars of work on it, the only copy, was accidentally erased by some drunk guys clowning around who decided it would be a good idea to record their antics and grabbed the wrong tape to record over. Just lots of priceless stuff I’m sure Kerry will delight in sharing with everyone back home.
Tom Wild played two of the tunes on the same rig he used to played The Opry this past weekend, a maple Telecaster direct through his pedal board that could have easily passed for a Fender Twin Reverb amp.
Early vocal tracking on Kerry’s project, then mix tomorrow, I can’t wait to get at these fabulous tracks!- b.e.