A big day today for the session musicians, starting with Abby coming in to play oboe on Valley of Salt – Volume Two. She played on the first album, which is still being mixed and so far on this one, she has a very small part that you might have imagined would take five minutes when you hear how long the part is, no, that’s not how it works. Timing, performance, tuning, vibrato, tone, there’s a lot to consider including immersing the reeds in a small cup of water. But what a beautiful and distinctive instrument it is as you know by this list of famous oboists that you’ve been following.
We were trying to fit bits of guitar parts in between the session stars but by the time one had gone, and we’d started getting set up for a guitar part it was time for the next instrumentalist. This time it was Dave Monsch, sax player extraordinaire who came armed with impressive weaponry: a 1968 tenor sax and a 1954 baritone sax. The baritone looked like an engine part from a flying fortress, in fact, it sounded like that too, a deep growl. It’s fascinating when you get to the instruments beyond drums, bass, guitars, and keyboards, these players have so much musical knowledge, they read music, transpose it in their heads, have amazing timing, and rarely play a wrong note in improvisation, you’ll hear the skills on album two.
Rich arrived to play piano and keys whilst Dave was still playing. Rich comes in all the time to work on the projects and tonight after the sax we had some jazzy playing from Rich’s sweet fingers. We worked a lot on the song, changing parts, changing guitar chords even to get what we wanted. Now we just need to add the bass and the violins in the coming days for a special track on this intriguing and complex album.
Tonight the moon was finally full but although the clouds attempted to shroud the spectacle, they failed as the light burst through anyway illuminating the neighbourhood. The haze made the sight even more spooky, the mists of time had you contemplating the universe as the aliens sank down into your mind, stole your soul, and carried it off into a galaxy of stars.
Music today has been Amon Düül UK’s Fool Moon (1989), a splinter group from the legacy of Amon Düül and Amon Düül 2, it’s a long story.