Production 101: Rhythm Section

The most influential album in my life is arguably Quincy Jones' Sounds and Stuff Like That.  In the liner notes (written by Alex Haley) Q calls Anthony Jackson, Eric Tee, Phil Upchurch, and Grady Tate the greatest rhythm section in the world.

As a youth, this was the first time I had ever heard the term "rhythm section".  And truth be told, this was an amazing rhythm section.  I even learned how rhy. sections would record first in EVERY studio section.  This means they have to be tight.

Things to remember:
1) Pick your rhythm section wisely.  They MUST gel.  If they don't, your recordings will reflect.
2) If you aren't rehearsing, make SURE they can READ!!!!!
3) Make sure they can play with a click track.  Yes, I have played with some that can't.  AARGH!
4) Make sure they can play the style you want to record.  (Yes, some people try to get a church              
           drummer to play afro-cuban and songo and they've never heard of it..)


I have recorded my rhythm section with NO rehearsals.  They came in a sight-read the charts to highest degree.  I believe I have been blessed with the greatest in the world!  Time for shout-outs:

I was blessed to have keyboardists Demetrius Nabors and Al McKenzie appear on four songs on "A Tale of Two Fools."   Man, they are phenomenal!!!

Guitarists Duane Collins, Sandy Love, Wayne Goins added that flavor that every album needs!  My wife's cousin, Don Vappie, will be recording soon.

Bassists Ibrahim Jones, Marcus Belgrave Jr, Bobby Scharmann, and Freeman Spills laid the groove done HARD.  People will be copying your licks forever!

The last two people were crucial to this projects:
Damon Warmarck aka Basso Profundo:  My friend since 1992.  My brother, thank you for your musical expertise.   You coming by to the house to record while I was taking care of my mom was priceless.

Last far from least, my friend forever, I thank you Nate Winn.  Out of eighteen songs with drums, you are on fifteen.  There is no way this project would be done with you.  You are a complete drummer. No style is out of your league.  You came in when it was just a piano, you, and a click track. We even came up with songs on the spot!  Superb musicianship.  The pocket is amazing.  The fills were immaculate!  This is why you'll forever be "Tightus Pocketus!"

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