We spent today working on several songs that have vocals. Petra sang an Irish folk song that was very complex and very moving, and then after a break for lunch I sang my first song of the session, an anti-war song again in the Irish folk tradition called "The Green Fields Of France". Its a very famous song that's been covered by lots of different artists and I gave it my best shot, I hope I did it justice. After a short break my dad's wife Ruth sang another Irish song, I'll let the title be a surprise. Ruth sang it so beautifully.
In the studio with us today was Pat Metheny playing the most soulful and entrancing guitarwork I've ever heard, and Bruce Hornsby, who played piano in a way that made me feel like I was floating it was so heavenly!
I've known Pat ever since I was a kid. He gave me my first guitar when I was 13 and he's always been so encouraging to me and enthusiastic about my music. He is a true inspiration to me, and to my sisters as well!
Here's a photo of Pat with my sister Petra.
When I got to the studio this morning I wasn't completely awake yet and I turned a corner in the hallway and almost ran smack dab into Bruce Hornsby! That was a surprise! I'd never met Bruce before but I'd always admired his music and musicianship (and also knew that my dad is a huge fan of his), but I found out also that he is an incredibly nice guy, with a great sense of humor and positive attitude about everything.
Later that evening Pat, Bruce, and my dad (along with Russ Barenburg on guitar, Jerry Douglas on dobro, and Stuart Duncan on fiddle, these are legends people!) recorded a song with my sister Tanya on vocals solo this time. The song was an old folk ballad called "He's Gone Away" and my dad told me he remembers his mom singing it to him when he was a kid. With the guys playing and my sister singing they had the entire control room in tears! Bruce Hornsby had a particularly beautiful piano solo during that song.
Here's a picture of my dad in the session room during the recording of "He's Gone Away".
Here's Russ Barenburg, left, and Jerry Douglas in the studio during the same song.
But it wasn't all hard work today. We had a lot of fun too!
Party in the lounge! From left Rachel, Petra, Petra's boyfriend Fred Armisen, Bruce Hornsby, Jerry Douglas, and Tanya.
Today a cute dog named Pepper visited us.
Rachel and her boyfriend Atom Ellis went into town and bought some hip cowboy boots.
Drummer-at-large Jens Hannemann showed up unannounced with a new hairdo.
In the afternoon the man himself Ricky Skaggs came by to hang out for a few hours. He shook my hand and greeted me so warmly he made me feel like I was an old friend. He complemented my songwriting and I was tounge-tied! He'll be in the studio to record with us in the morning and I am so looking forward to it!