I hope you’re having a great 2015 so far. The other day at work, I told someone “Happy New Year!” to which they responded, “It’s already almost halfway through January… you can stop saying that!” I scratched my head and wondered if that was correct, if there is a time when “Happy New Year!” isn’t appropriate anymore. I supposed if you’re still saying that in August, then you MIGHT want to stop, but it’s still January! I figure if I see you for the first time in 2015 during the month of January, it’s appropriate to say it.
What do you think?
Now, I know that you didn’t come to this post for a lesson on “Happy New Year” etiquette, so I’ll get to the point.
The Lovebirds (Lindsay White and Veronica May) came in for a session last year and I’m just getting to them now. I have to say that I was extremely swamped last December. I fell behind on finishing the session videos, and then I fell behind even MORE when the holidays hit. I took a month off from the sessions to spend time with family, and I’m honestly just now getting back into the swing of things. I’m ashamed to say that I’m still behind on a couple of the sessions, but I will catch up in no time because someone gave me THIS for Christmas:
Pretty cool. I intend to fire it up this week. I’ll let you know how it goes 10 years ago. By the way, if you didn’t know what that is, then I’m going to point and stare at you in a most judgmental way until you tell me not only what it is, but who created it.
Anyhow, I came across The Lovebirds whilst clicking on a bunch of links one night. I can’t recall where the original link came from, but it took me to a YouTube video that captured a live performance. I said to myself, “Wow!” and continued to listen to more of their music online. The songwriting was top notch. The performances were stellar… and man alive, the harmonies… the harmonies were exquisite. I wrote them and after some exchange, they decided to drive up from San Diego on the Friday after Thanksgiving for the session. On their official site, The Lovebirds akin themselves to The Indigo Girls and Tegan and Sara. By the time you watch all the videos, I’m sure you’ll find some truth in that description.
Such a big sound from two people. The dynamic range of their songwriting kept me captivated throughout the session. From the rocker “Gray,” to the tender and delicate “Volcano,” I was amazed on the control they had over their voices and how they played within the music. I don’t know how much they practice, but the end result is a sign of their dedication to their craft.
“Gray” was the first song up… drums, electric guitar, and vocals. Veronica had this (old?) Ibanez guitar that we ran through my Vox Night Train amp. If I recall, she just plugged the guitar in straight… no effects… the EQ was straight up at 12 o’clock… just some grit. The bluesy riffing and groove to the music fits the lyric that plays out a boxing match that must have a deeper meaning than my tiny brain can handle.
Loved the bow at the end. I need to start doing that in everything I do. Even after ordering something at In-N-Out, I need to just turn around and bow to the rest of the customers. Somebody will film it one day, put it on YouTube, and it’ll go viral. Then I’ll be famous for the most ridiculous reason. Livin’ the dream.
Coming off a rocker of a song, The Lovebirds turned to one that started off so quietly that I had to hold my breath while filming. “Boat Train” showcases their wonderful harmonies… I love the ornaments they throw in at the end of some of the lines. Such a gorgeous piece of music.
Recording drums in the space I have here is always a challenge. The chances of the drum tracks bleeding into the rest of the microphones is high, as you’ll hear in this next performance. In “Whiplash,” the drums bled into Lindsay’s vocal mic a bit too much. Personally, I liked how big the drums sounded, but I think in getting that big sound, the drums drowned out her singing a bit too much, especially in the middle section. Live and learn. I absolutely love this song. The line, “If the crash doesn’t get you, the whiplash will,” is one that I sincerely wish I came up with.
For their last song, Lindsay and Veronica decided to sit on the (now famous?) black couch for a more intimate song, “Volcano.” For the guitar, I plugged it into the board as well as sticking a mic in front of it. Love the sound I got. I need to get a Taylor guitar. If anyone wants to buy me one, let me know and I’ll send you 1,000 links to the one(s) I want.
This song was the perfect ending to the day. I’ll say it again – the harmonies! Man ALIVE I love harmonies. Their voices blend so well together. This may seem like a small detail, but it’s one that I think is overlooked in many singers that harmonize together… notice how Lindsay and Veronica handle the “s” at the end of the lines. They both end at the same time, so there is only one “s” that you hear. I’m not sure if that makes sense, but pay attention and I think you’ll hear what I mean. Paul Simon (of Simon and Garfunkel) once explained how he and Art would sit in front of each other study how the other sang… all for the purpose of getting this sort of timing down.
Take a look/listen. This is a great song as well, so you’ll doubly rewarded!
The Lovebirds have a few shows coming up:
Jan 16 @ 8pm – Java Joe’s/Artlab Studios in San Diego, CA
Jan 31 @ 1pm – Belly Up Tavern in Solan Beach, CA
Feb 14 @ 7pm – San Dieguito United Methodist Church Hall in Encinitas, CA
Feb 19 @ 9pm – Folk Alliance Internation in Kansas City, MO.
I highly recommend catching a performance. I described their music as “powerful” to a friend of mine, and I’m going to stick with that. Thanks to Lindsay and Veronica for making the trek to do the session. It was such a joy to meet and record them, and I really, really, REALLY hope to have them back sometime soon. They were kind enough to gift me with their catalog…
Yeah, I’m kind of a big deal. I should’ve had them autograph the covers. Rats.
Check out the pictures from this session on our Facebook page here.
The Lovebirds on: [Official Site] [Facebook] [Twitter]