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Monday, December 13, 2010

270. "Mama Tried" by Merle Haggard & the Strangers

This Skates & Rays session represented a major step forward in terms of multitracking on the fly in a plumbing shop-- the caveat being that we ran out of good microphones after five tracks, which we're working on-- but we still have a major hurdle to overcome in the vocals department. The fact that I haven't dialed the live recording of vocals in yet is no big deal when it comes to me singing, since I can just bring the recording home and re-do it here. What goes missing in that process, in terms of what makes Skates & Rays Skates & Rays, is the backing vocals from Cliff and Derek. That's always been a key part of our identity as a beat combo: everyone sings. It's surprising how often you can set up as a three piece band and tell the sound guy that "everyone sings", and then discover that the drummer hasn't been given a mic. Derek is possibly the best singer in the band (and if he isn't, it's still not me).

Still, good to do this tune. It's based in equal parts on the original version and the version that my dad's band did for years... it was a real staple of Thunderhill's live set, but it never made it onto one of their records. I still play the intro like Ed Jordan did, partly because I'm going through a period of being totally gobsmacked by the awesomeness of Roy Nichols.

Rex Broome ~ Guitar & vocals
Derek Hanna ~ Drums
Clifford Ulrich ~ Bass

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