Today's session was with Chelsey Danielle (i.e. 'Red'), an accomplished multi instrumentalist who plays in several bands and also performs as a solo artist. I met Chelsey during the Pearl Earl session from a few weeks ago, for whom she plays keys and sings. She really liked the layout and vibe of the studio, so we discussed doing some of her own solo stuff and shooting a video for it at the same time.
This turned out to be a great idea, not only because she is a talented songwriter, but also because watching her perform as a solo artist is pretty engaging. She has a rather elaborate setup for her live show, and it entails a number of different instruments all going at the same time, while being looped and overdubbed. Specifically she has a drum machine, several percussion instruments, a keyboard, and her vocal which all go through a small mixer. She then lines out of the mixer and feeds everything to a Boss loop station (the big one!), which then goes out to an amplifier that she uses as a monitor. I took a direct line out of the back of the amplifier so that we captured everything that was going on live as well as everything being looped by the loop station.
It's easy to see where her education as a trained musician comes out: she moved seamlessly between several percussion instruments, keyboards, and vocals, and all of this live and in real-time. This is a lot harder to do than it may look, because if you mess up one little thing rhythmically, the whole house of cards comes crashing down. In other words, you have to listen to that mistake looped over and over again. Needless to say she didn't make any mistakes. We only did two takes and they were both great, but we decided to keep the second one.
Sarah Passon of Mixed Fiction shot the video for it, and I can't wait to see the finished product. When you do see it, rest assured that, like the sessions for Shake Music, this is truly a live performance, there is no studio magic or overdubs on this recording.
Be sure to catch Chelsey performing with Pearl Earl or Helium Queens around the DFW area!