Friday, July 23, 2010

Guidance Band

Just back home from a marathon mixing session of superb Hawaiian roots reggae from Guidance Band. The session was much more marathon than it should have been due to file mismanagement. Fortunately, the music, all of it tuned to Jah in one way or another, was sustaining.

Another producer, responsible for adding in the dubbed out bits in a different studio, was unaware of the "Save As" function in Pro Tools that allows you to completely transform a session while staying linked to the original audio files. Instead, he set-up brand new sessions but with a different format, wav instead of aiff, and a different sample rate. The end result being that when we brought up his sessions, none of the audio files linked up, hence, no sound.

So 8 of the tracks didn't have any usable audio. But as fate, destiny, Jah, luck, or quantum indeterminacy would have it, studio manager Andrew Mastroni had arranged for Matt Wright, Prairie Sun's Pro Tools ace, to help us get started. He reconverted the files that allowed them to link to the dubbed out sessions which basically saved the day.

Since the dubbed efx were already there, I only had to get sounds and a good balance mix of everything... oh, and find critical files that the dub producer had deleted, which, luckily, still existed on the drive and could be reimported.

Guidance Band won a Marijuana Music Award for Best Reggae Song in 2007 on the last album I mixed for them. About half, or maybe more, of the songs on this new album could win again.

The rastaband vibrations were still reeling in my cranium on a call to another client who read a poem to me she was going to present. A line she quoted from the Hindu mystic Kabir really jumped out:

"The only woman awake is the woman who has heard the flute..."

This recalls the idea of "bringing the woman to life" as an alchemical/transformational modus operandi. There's at least a million or maybe 6 billion plus ways to look at it: in performance, the audience could be the 'woman' who awakens upon 'hearing the flute' ie real music from the heart and soul. Woman, in these instances refers less to biological gender, and more to principles or tendencies found in nature.

The joy of playing the flute, the joy of playing music, is to bring the woman to life.

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