The Ardent Sessions (Into the Mix)

Well, I’ve got good news and bad news.

The good news is that Monday (Day 2) at Ardent went so well that the record’s wrapped!  We mixed, dotted some t’s, crossed some i’s, and sent the tracks off to New Orleans to be mastered.

The bad news is that the start of this week was so productive that I’m fried and useless now.  Think of a not-delicious Soul Fish basket.

But before I melt back into the pavement, I wanted to pass along a few more pictures.

The view from the mixing couch.

For example, here is a picture.

This picture is of my leg and shoe in the control room for Studio A.  I have another leg and shoe, but I can’t prove it from this picture.  You might think that I’m posting this picture solely for its aesthetic merits (“Look at that leg! Look at that shoe!”), but wait, there’s more!

This picture is both fun and educational, because it illustrates a crucial point about the “mixing” process.  For the producer, the mixing process involves sitting in the captain’s chair (Look, there’s Jeff!), working with every tiny detail of every tiny sound, bringing them all together to make an overall great sound, and being a multi-purpose genius and visionary.  For the artist, the mixing process involves sitting on the couch, hearing your own song 8000 times in a row, and saying “Yeah!  YEAH!” a lot.

It’s like being on a roller-coaster for twelve hours, if that roller coaster did flips and corkscrews and dips and drops with your self-esteem instead of your body and hairdo.  At the end, you praise the roller-coaster’s architect for making it fun and keeping you safe.  Breathe.  Relax.  You’re in good hands.


The producer/engineer/multi-purpose genius and visionary leaves the captain’s chair, and you find yourself alone in the control room with a million buttons at your disposal.  As most NASA employees and all my grade school teachers can tell you, I love pushing buttons.  Literal, figurative, you name it.  So I occasionally fought the temptation to push buttons that could perhaps 1) break Ardent Studios 2) launch a space shuttle 3) complicate a Lost plot 4) etc.

Of course, I’m just being goofy.  The fact is that a lot of people worked a lot of hours for two days straight to make this little record happen, and I’m amazed by their work.  Humbled, really.  I can’t wait to share it with y’all.

More soon, I promise.  But in the meantime, want to join me for this (either in Memphis or online)?

(Details here.  Invite folks on Facebook here.)


Holler Here!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s