Recording at Willie Nelson's Studio, Spring 2005 · Words by Ginger
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From LA to Texas in a dramatic flare up of events (as detailed in the recent Ginger Says - Ed), recording began at the home of a living legend, Willie Nelson's studio in Austin, Texas.
Willie has been a hero of mine since forever and I am so honoured to be recording in this wonderful place, complete with incredible scenery and the ghost of Country, Rock n Roll and maverick spirit embedded in the very walls of the wooden studio.
As Ralph and I drive from San Antonio I feel nervous and shaky. Willie Nelson has taught me as much about longevity as Lemmy and Keef, and my mood is one of aggressive apprehension that I pray will lift on arrival. Don't wanna fuck this session up with bad vibes.
I have a lyric going through my head as we pull into the legendary driveway that The Rolling Stones, Frank Sinatra and Willie himself have all pulled into in the past. It goes:
"I'm in the Lonestar State of the Stars and Bars
and I'm lonely, full of hate and I'm covered in stars"
This is fate.
As I walk around outside, an eagle loops high above my head. The place couldn't be more perfect for what we are about to attempt. We need to record an un-Godly amount of drums in order to make this album an historic feast of heavenly music. Joel Loper has enough spirit and talent to pull off this immense feat, and in 3 days he has recorded 19 songs. A truly ridiculous performance for any drummer, ever.
Local legend, Riley Osbourn, arrives to play the most wonderful piano and Hammond organ as we finish off one song, "The Man Who Cheated Death" and sail effortlessly into the mixing process. After a drink in Poodeys, Willies favourite bar, (being outrageously entertained by barman/musician Jimmy Lee Jones), we went back to complete the first song of the album.
I have never recorded and mixed this quickly before, to this tremendous an effect, but plenty of legendary characters have.
Two days to get out of the black mood I'd been wearing for months, and then on the third day it was gone. I awoke to see the beauty. On Willie Nelsons 72nd birthday. The heartache was over. I was cleared of the emotional baggage that I had carried around all year. I was free.
And it was all down to the inspiration of a local man who turned 72 on the day of my emotional release.
Willie Nelson, Ladies and Gentlemen, is the spirit of independence, struggle and God given talent and is still going strong. I only hope that I can one day be so cool.
Check out the new song, 'The Man Who Cheated Death' - at MySpace for further proof that legends live to inspire and direct.
Ginger, May 2005