tex mex red chicken

tex mex red chicken

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They call it the graveyard shift or gravy for short. All-nighter at the studio. It’s the cheapest time on the clock. Midnight to 8 in the morning. Just me, the engineer and the click track hour after hour. It can make you crazy. The drum machine playback in the headphones. Like getting boxed in the ears 120, 140, 165 beats per minute. I’m humanising. What’s that? Well, its when they need a human to play percussion over a machine drum line to give it some life. Been giving life all night and now I’m dead. Beating on the kit till my arms fall off and my heads been jack hammered to mush. I’m punchy, I feel drunk. I don’t see straight.
I’m starving hungry too.

The over-bright fluorescent tube lights in the store burn into my head after the cave-like gloom of the recording booth. I’m staggering under the weight of my cymbal bag, percussion box and snare case. Yeah! Thinking maybe my mum was right when she sent me for violin lessons when I was 5 years old.

Wow!, they’ve got everything in here, but what do I want? I grab some red chillies, limes, cilantro and a pack of fresh chicken breasts. I’ve got cooked rice and beans in the fridge at home. Got onions, garlic and olive oil too. Just need a can of those lovely little cherry tomatoes. I bend down to reach them off the bottom shelf then stand up too quickly. The aisle bends and warps. Sudden white noise hissing in my ears. My eyes flicker out of focus and the floor rushes up to meet my teeth. A cascade of cans rains down, clattering and chasing each other across the floor. They sound like wind chimes in a thunderstorm on race day. Vague shapes move and mumble, far away I’m sinking. [Read more…]

classical gazpacho

classical gazpacho

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Its not the first time its happened. They’ve been here before. I just didn’t expect them to arrive with such a raging hunger this time. Good job we made some earlier.

I forgot to bring my magic carpet. Every drummer has one. Set-up your drums on it so they don’t slide across the floor. My bass drum is skidding about on the tile floor of this garage. Every time I hit the pedal it slides further away from me until my stretched out leg is playing it on tip toes. Time for the duct tape and some string.

My thundertone-earthquake bass playing brother Al#B is tuning up causing dogs to howl and birds to fall out of trees a half mile away. No car in the garage and it sounds really boomy in here. We’re just warming up and I already feel sorry the neighbours. The tin roof flexes from the sub-bass pressure from his amp. The doors rattle and buzz threatening to pop the hinges and fly into the street. We like it loud.

Just bass and drums today kicking around some grooves, making a load of hideous shrieking, crashing-row that sounds like the demolition of a multi-story car park, all falling rubble and twisted re-bar. Turn it up some more and start beating on those tubs. 20 minutes of non-stop frenzy and my eyeballs are trying to escape my skull and Al’s sub-bass is making it hard to see or breath.

Then the ground starts to shake. Wait a minute. CrashHHhAzzzxxK! [Read more…]