Studio Session Wrap

The final sessions for Northern Songs took place at Inner Groove Studios in Minneapolis this weekend. Maestro and multi-instrumentalist Casey Frensz was at the helm once again along with guitarist extraordinaire Brother Jon Rabideaux. Bassists Chris Warren and Reilly Griffin laid down the bottom end on the new tracks and keyboardist Joe Kemmerling added some very tasty accompaniment. The new songs we recorded were “What We Do Is Secret” (a funky blues number that I have been playing out the latter part of the season at live shows) “The Place That I Come From” (a grand, string-infused biopic love song to the Chequamegon Bay region) and “Where Horses Sing” (a Native American-inspired love song to Mother Earth).

The track listing for Northern Songs is as follows (not necessarily in any particular order):

  • Echo Valley Road (for Roberta)
  • Baxter Bear
  • Tomorrow (to Bernie)
  • Where the Horses Sing (with Frank “Anakwad” Montano)
  • Keep the Groove (ft. V. Renee Wynn)
  • What We Do Is Secret
  • Blues In the Mornin'
  • (If You'se a) Viper
  • Conelickers
  • The Place That I Come From

You can hear six of the tracks under the “Music” tab on this website; you'll have to wait until the album release to hear the other four. Work now transitions to mixing and mastering before production of the physical CDs and vinyl and the final electronic versions of the songs that will be available for download. 

I can't say enough about Casey and the work that he's done on this project. He's been a teacher, a mentor, a musical guidance counselor and great friend throughout this journey. His contributions as a player are also key to the project, as he plays drums, bass, synth/keys, horns, strings and various other percussion instruments masterfully throughout the record. And while Captain Queso has been at the helm, Brother Jon Rabideaux is the one that provided the encouragement and spark that launched this fair ship in the first place. His support inspired me to undertake this momentous task, and his guitar work on the record is absolutely stellar. 

Speaking of people that are central to this effort, I simply could not have done all of this without the support of my wonderful wife Roberta. In addition to providing the inspiration for many of the songs, she has essentially been my adult babysitter as I concentrate on my music. She is always taking care of me and making sure that I have everything I need, and I'd be lost without her. 

I'm really excited to get everything finished and into your ear holes, but in the meantime, you can catch me live this Saturday night at Tom's Burned Down Cafe in Lake Superior on Madeline Island (8 p.m. start). Next Saturday I'll be at Battle Axe in Iron River to close out the 100-day season - hope to see you soon!