All Blue and Gold
Something About All Blue and Gold...
The first song I wrote came from the help of someone who I actually knew (and continue to know) very little about. Still, I always felt grounded, welcomed, and seen in our brief exchanges. I had mentioned that I had written out the structure of a song but was struggling to write lyrics. The next time I saw him, he handed me a crumpled-up piece of paper with the most beautiful words written on it. I used his poetry and changed his poetry, and out of it came a song: "Mapping the Stars." Thank you for that, Dan (wherever you are, whatever you're doing).
I realized then that the process of having to articulate a feeling or thought (that is often still unknown) concisely, melodically (and bonus if it rhymes) helps me. It slows my thoughts to the speed of my pen and soothes my heart from the "ifs and of whens."
In my experience, there is always a certain "humming" before a song comes out; a heat as it arrives to paper, a lifting upon its completion. The hum? Possibly the result of being present (perhaps even noticing sounds)? The heat? Maybe from the rush of blood to my face after feeling slightly flustered for revealing something I could have easily not. And the lifting and lightness? The result of an outlet and release? I guess I'm not entirely sure where songs come from or what they mean, but what I do know is that I love songwriting, and always will.
So a few years ago, after I walked into a small bookstore, and came out with a blue and gold notebook, instinctively on the first page, I imagined a list of songs I might one day write. At the bottom of the page, I also noted that I hoped to record those songs with Jordy Walker (as I often really appreciated his influence on some of the music that rotated through my headphones).
With the support of the Yukon Government's Demo Sound Recording Grant, that hope became a reality. The six-song EP includes contributions from Tara Martin on drums (Goodbye to the Sun, Normal Person, Show Yourself & The Weight of the Clock). Tara is authentic and disarming, bringing upbeat energy to the studio. Darcy McCord is featured on the cello (The Weight of the Clock). I love listening to Darcy in action and have been left breathless by the beauty of his playing. Erica Mah's vocal harmonies fill out The Weight of the Clock and Show Yourself. Erica is confident and composed behind a microphone, and I find both admiration and inspiration from her unique understanding of the musical language. Bethan Davies also contributed harmonies to The Weight of the Clock. Bethan is my sister and friend and can do pretty much anything (including finding those low-end notes). Her warmth and quick-wit accompany her wherever she goes.
Jordy Walker played the many remaining instruments (electric guitars, synths, accordion, drums, bass, zither). Although I know it's impossible to read someone's mind, more often than not, he took the songs in the direction I was hoping they would go. Jordy produced and recorded "All Blue and Gold" and worked to make the entire process enjoyable (somehow, even playing to a click wasn't that bad).
Apart from being around really great people and musicians, highlights of recording the songs include conversations around how to support anothers' creative process, the studio sunlight, and eating garden salads.
Thank you to the Yukon Government's Sound Recording Grant; I am grateful for the support, I am grateful for the push.
Setting up to record the drum tracks
Recording the Cello- The Weight of the Clock
Stackwall Sound Studio- electric guitars, synths, bass, drums, accordian, zither
Vocal harmonies- The Weight of the Clock
Listening and brainstorming
Vocal harmonies- The Weight of the Clock & Show Yourself
Recording guitar tracks
Sara MacDonald and Jordy Walker