Bluegrass in the Studio

Bluegrass In The Studio

Got a band and some great songs and ready for the studio? I have made two "bluegrass" albums in the past 4 years and I'm working on a third. Disclaimer: I put bluegrass in quotes, because they are quite on the fringe, and many tunes are not bluegrass at all. The best way to record, is to experiment and find what works best for you and your band. I have come up with some techniques that I believe work best for me, but I'm still learning. Between my experience in the studio, talking to other musicians and reading up, here…

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Down in the Willow Garden

This old Appalachian murder ballad with Irish roots has been done over and over again by greats such as Charlie Monroe, The Stanley brothers who recorded the song twice in the 50s, the Everly Brothers and even Norah Jones and countless others. This song has always befuddled me. Why does this poor dude's father think that having his son kill Rose Connelly will bring them riches? Who knows. Anyways, I think it's a pretty song. I may have gone overboard with the Ken Burns cropping and panning, but I think the bananas make up for it. This video is more to…

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Album Art Sketches

Crossing The Black Album Artwork Sketches
Crossing The Black Album Artwork Sketches Crossing The Black Album Artwork Sketches Crossing The Black Album Artwork Sketches Crossing The Black Album Artwork Sketches

I met with my brilliant friend and artistic associate "The Artist" on Monday (the artist requested to remain nameless for now.) We met to review artwork for the cover of Crossing the Black to be released summer 2015! We started with a discussion about art and music, and ended up in a cribbage game with a couple of drunken strangers. I won. The sketches capture my vision perfectly. The music on this record is some of my most personal work, drawing on my experiences, my fantasies and my present life. The title "Crossing the Black" refers to the Black River in…

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Ken Chapple and Simon Linsteadt Attic Session

Ken Chapple And Simon Linsteadt Attic Session

On a cold February evening, a lonesome traveler arrived at my door. His name was Simon Linsteadt, and he was on a journey to show to his soul what it meant to truly be a solitary wanderer. We shared stories of jams come and gone. We listened to bits of the new Steep Ravine record, The Pedestrian (which is killer, by the way.) After a while, my wife, baby girl and Sammy the dog, and Cleo the cat laid down for bedtime. Once the whole house was quiet, and everyone else was asleep, Simon and I ascended the dark staircase…

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Is It Wise to Run a DIY Album Release Campaign?

Is It Wise To Run A DIY Album Release Campaign?

... or is it really dumb? What am I missing? What do you think are the pros and cons of a DIY campaign? Have you ever tried, or considered trying a crowdfunded campaign to sell pre-orders? With the work left to do on my record dwindling down, I have begun to think about how I’m going to release this lovely work of art. I think I’ll try a DIY crowdfunding campaign to sell pre-orders. Crowdfunding is Probably a Good Idea I wasn’t initially intending to run a crowdfunding campaign, but as the money spent on the record has reached up…

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5 Albums To Inspire Your Flatipicking In 2015

5 Albums To Inspire Your Flatipicking In 2015

Here is a little list I've compiled of albums (in no particular order) that I stumbled across in the past year that may be slightly off the beaten path. I definitely recommend purchasing all of these fine recordings. For your convenience, I have provided links to buy these records from the artist. Allen Shadd - Miles From the Hard Road Allen is a two-time national flatpick champion and Miles From The Hard Road is filled with beautifully executed flatpicking. Buy Here   John Mailander - Walking Distance Molly Tuttle brings some very nice, creative picking to John Mailander's Walking Distance.…

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Build A “Pretty Much” To Scale 1/32 Box Violin

Toddler Crafts for a Happy Musical House Have any questions about building this box violin, leave a comment below, or on my Facebook Page. Download Violin F-Hole Stencil There is always music around our house in various forms. We host jams, we host rehearsals, we have touring musicians popping in, we watch youtube clips of music, we make up songs, and we dance to music on the radio. My toddler LOVES music. I found her one afternoon, just after her second birthday imitating a violin with the stuffed rainbow trout that my brother gifted her. That gave me an idea.…

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Get Ready For Winter

Get Ready For Winter Hey all! Time to get ready for winter. The cold, cold winter is right around the corner again, so I had the idea to resurrect this little gem called "Winter Song." This song was written over a period of several years, and was first recorded on Wayward Vessel's 2010 self-titled debut album. I started writing "Winter Song" in 2003. I was getting ready to head west to Portland, OR. G.W. Bush had recently declared war on Iraq. I was anxious. I was idealistic, though I knew it would be hard having moved out on my own…

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