|GOING TRACK BY TRACK on Old Man Dreamin' with John Batdorf|
|Written by Joe Viglione|
|Friday, 28 August 2009 22:18|
John Batdorf's Old Man Dreamin' album gets the Track By Track treatment as Joe Viglione asks John about the creation of this music. Click onto the CD cover to find John Batdorf, Batdorf & Rodney, Batdorf & McLean CDs on http://www.gemm.com
Check out the video to "Will I Love You Forever" linked below.
1)Why did you decide to record the songs on Old Man Dreamin?
John Batdorf: Old Man Dreamin’ is kind of a tongue in cheek autobiography about my career which really sets up the CD. There are some very clever and funny lines in between the serious hook, “My dreams are bittersweet ‘cos I’m an Old Man Dreamin’ in a Young Mans’ World” which is how I feel at times as I plod ahead in the music business some forty years now. I love the verse, “Through the years I made some fans, Then I struck gold with the Silver band...Wham Bam”, which refers to the big hit Wham Bam Shang-A-Lang I had in 1976 with the band Silver.
2)Were all these songs recorded and mixed at the same studio?
John Batdorf: All of the songs on this CD were recorded in my studio. The great thing about recording today, other than not having a record company own and control your stuff, is the fact that you can record with guys all over the world exchanging files via the internet. Harry Stinson was the drummer and one of the singers in the band Silver. He lives in Nashville and has had a very successful career. I asked him if he would sing with me on a song or two and got him to sing on “I Fall To Pieces” which he did splendidly as I knew he would. Many of the players on this
3)Did the inspiration for this work come all at once, during a fixed period in time, or was it spread out over many years...or longer?
4)Are all the tracks by the same musicians and, if so, how long has this particular group been together?
John Batdorf: I usually use the same guys on my projects but this time I really wanted to reach out to some new people that I hadn’t ever worked with on a record before. On “What D’ Ya Got” for instance, I used Luke Halpin on mandolin and Kevin Dukes on the electric guitar and Gary Falcone on background vocals. I wanted to keep
5)Who are all the songwriters on this album?
John Batdorf: Michael McLean and myself wrote all the songs from June to December. We have been writing songs together off and on for almost twenty years. This batch may be our best yet which is always what you strive for. The reviews have been phenomenal so far. We had eleven songs written by the end of July but two of the songs weren’t holding up to the other nine. I always hate giving up songs but clearly two better songs needed to be written. I started recording the album and one day started playing a riff in a new tuning and got inspired. I wrote, “Don’t Tell
6)Any anecdotes about live performances of this song?
John Batdorf: Other than struggling in the beginning to learn all of the lyrics, all the songs but one translate beautifully live. I built the CD around acoustic guitar and voice and always made sure they led the train. “Sixteen” is one of those studio songs that I never planned or meant to do live for many reasons. The song was inspired by a
7)Was there anything out of the ordinary while recording a video of one or more songs from this album? And if not, how did the director of the video work with the original storyline? To your satisfaction?
John Batdorf: I had never shot a music video before. Most guys that are 57 years old don’t get that many calls for that! My co-songwriter, Michael McLean produced and directed commercials and films for years in the 80s and 90s and suggested we try and get some videos made for the CD. we got a really sweet deal and set out to shoot some music videos. The setting was in the mountains of Malibu and I loved doing the song, “Will I Love You Forever”. It’s the only song I recorded and wrote on the piano. We dragged a piano out on a deck which overlooked the beautiful
8)Was this song effectively captured in the studio or would you change something in the future or on stage?
9)How difficult was it getting this composition from your mind to the recording session and onto the disc?
John Batdorf: “Ain’t No Way” was the last song written for the CD and it wasn’t hard to write at all. This song was written around the time Bush was getting ready to leave office. The country was left in such a mess and The President didn’t seem compelled to say much about it. I know it’s a tough gig and I wouldn’t want it but I thought he
10)Did you attend the mastering session and how important was the mastering to the overall sound of the album?
John Batdorf: I have to be at the mastering session. Every producer does. Mastering is the last thing to be done to the project that artists/producers spend months and sometimes years creating. Even a simply produced song like,”Love: All I Really Know About It” can be made better or ruined in mastering. A song as simple as this needs room to breathe and the wrong EQ or too much compression can make it sound harsh to the listener. I always master with Ron McMaster at Capitol Records studio in Hollywood. It’s worth the money!
11)Pick any one, two or three songs to essay about, giving the reader more perspective on what you wanted to say... lyrically, musically or both.
John Batdorf: “I Will Rise This song came to me in a dead sleep during an afternoon nap. I woke up in a
|Last Updated on Friday, 28 August 2009 22:33|