Welcome to The Michael Lynch Appreciation Society, the Blogger that keeps tabs on the going-ons of New York 1960s-influenced pop-rock singer-songwriter, Michael Lynch. Please check here frequently for updates about Michael's live performances, new recordings, and what not.

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Michael Lynch Appreciation Society
Wednesday, June 15, 2005  

Hello...and welcome to my first Blog entry in...gulp!...HALF A YEAR! How did I let that happen? Well, I hope you all had a Merry Christmas...and a Happy New Year...and Valentine's Day...and Easter...and Memorial Day.

Now we're at the doorstep of Summer, my favorite time of year. Naturally a lot has happened in the last six months...several Anything People gigs, two Shaw Nuff gigs, and random projects here and there, not to mention some interesting happenings in my personal life (most notably, I became an Uncle at about 9:00 yesterday morning when my sister-in-law Allison gave birth to twin girls, Sierra and Jordan. I'm giving them six months to get adjusted to the world, and then we've got to get to work on setting up their production company...we'll show those Olsen twins.)

It'll take a few days to write about everything going on, so I'll do it in pieces. Today's installment...


Well, throughout 2004 I was writing about here and there about tracks I was recording for a new EP. Well...that's all been scrapped. So much time had passed that last month I just decided...Scrap everything, I'm going to start afresh. This decision was also helped by the purchase of a new (used) recorder...a four track cassette recorder. I purchased this because I wanted to get back into recording on magnetic tape. I saw, at a store on Rivington Street in the East Village, a Tascam four track with direct-to track assignment (meaning you could record four inputs at once and all four will end up on separate tracks...my old four track didn't have this, and I figured this would be useful for Anything People recording) and two speeds...the normal cassette speed and twice as fast, the latter resulting in better sound quality. The price seemed fairly reasonable, but I decided to research the machine on the internet first. Good thing I did, because I found someone selling the exact model on Ebay for much much less. So I bid on it and won...and thankfully the seller was a Long Islander, so I was able to make arrangements to pick it up myself, rather than wait for shipping, which not only would have cost a fair deal but also might have been a risky thing.

Well, I'm quite pleased with the machine so far. So now my recording procedure is this:

1) Record the basic rhythm track onto cassette...guitars, drums, bass, keyboards.
2) Mix this down to a Mini Disc (adding a little reverb)...I pan everything to the left except the bass which I pan in the middle, but I turn off the right speaker as I do this.
3) After I've done any necessary editing on the Mini Disc, I transfer it to Tracks One and Two of my Digital 8 Track...and the result is, Track One is the mixed backing track, while Track Two is just the bass...because I still want to have recall of the bass...sometimes it gets lost in the transfer, so it's good to still have it on a spare track to bump it up later if need be.
4) Proceed with vocals or whatever else on the remaining tracks.

So, while I still don't end up with a fully analogue recording, there's at least an analogue foundation, and I think it's added a warmth that may have been missing in previous recordings.

Under this new procedure, I started the EP afresh on the lucky date of Friday, May 13th. And what a lucky night it was...In much much shorter time than I would have guessed, I recorded all guitars and drums for five songs (four for the EP, a fifth as a possible Anything People song). The following Monday, May 16, I tackled all the basslines, and the next day I added keyboards to one of them. Mixed and edited a few days later...

And then I got lazy and did absolutely nothing with it for several weeks.

Finally, the other day, I transferred the mixes of the four EP contenders to the eight track...and tonight I decided that for the next four days I'll complete one song a night and be all done this weekend.

So tonight I did vocals for "I'll Be Your Friend." I recorded a version of this last July, and this new version is pretty much the same, but with one notable difference...I added an instrument I've not used on any of my recordings before. I'm not saying what...I'll let that be a surprise.

I also learned that I sing a little better if I'm playing a bass while I'm singing. Not sure why that is, and maybe it could be any instrument, not just a bass, but it seems to result in a better vocal track, so I plucked an unplugged bass while I did the vocal tracks. It was the quickest vocal "session" I've had in a long time, and that was for four vocals (two lead, two backing).

So that's one song down.

The five tracks will be...in this order....

I Don't Want My Baby (same version as on the IPO comp)

My Little Girl...new version of song I recorded March/April 2004. Since then I've given this to The Anything People...and taken it back again!

Taking The Time...New song, in 6/8. Wrote the lyrics on a train...well I didn't actually write the lyrics onto the train itself, I wrote the lyrics on a piece of paper...but while I was doing so, I was on a train. Well, actually, I wasn't *on* a train, I was *in* a train... Whatever.

Don't Think...New song. Someone who heard this asked if this was inspired by the Monkees' 'Headquarters' album...Close...it was inspired by some other song that reminded me of 'Headquarters.' Basically my aim was to record a song that sounded like mid-1967 rock, but I have my own meaning of that...What I mean is, I wanted to sound like a band in mid 1967 making their business as usual rock/pop and didn't see 'Pepper' coming at all!

I'll Be Your Friend...as discussed above.

Okay, there's plenty more to report, but here's a start. Next time, I'll bring you all up to date on The Anything People.

11:42 PM

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