“Ravana’s Game” Update for September

Do you really want to know why it has been two months since a film score update here on “Partners”? Really?

Okay, how to ‘Readers Digest’ the past two months.  We had to completely rearrange the schedule we were working on, for reasons way too long to go into.  Plus, they are personal, and really only interesting to us.  However, we also had to completely rearrange the studio, and that is a yarn and a half.

I almost have a headache starting when I think about it. Excedrin Break!

Hallo! I am back.  Tomas and I recorded all of the percussion and vocals, that in itself not an easy task due to the way the studio was set up.  In spite of it being a bit tight, we got some amazing takes, and as I was happily, albeit stumbling a bit from exhaustion, putting all of the different drums and percussion instruments back in their places, when I heard an odd sound from the studio. Part heavy sigh, part groan……

I stuck my head in the studio, where Tomas was standing amidst a pile of cables that we were going to sit and wrap, plug, and unplug, etc., together after the mikes and drums were put back.  He was shaking his head.

“I am going to have to re-arrange the studio,” he said, resigned.  He was, if possible, more exhausted than I.

“Why? I mean, yeah, it was a bit of a squeeze, but we managed to record everything we needed and more, as far as I am concerned,” I answered, picking up the Dholak – a very cool North Indian, Pakistani, and Nepalese double headed hand drum that Tomas is using in the score – it looks like this:

imagesThey come in different sizes,  Tomas owns a small one and a larger one – this is a picture of a small one, although you cannot really compare it to anything, but suffice to say, my tired self could still manage to bend over and pick it up with one hand.  I digress.

Tomas shook his head. “It was too tight, I want to be comfortable, I want any other players to be comfortable, and you were squished up so hard against the console recording that I’ll bet there is a big red line across your stomach.

I looked.  There was.  I acquiesced.

I wish I had some ‘before’, and ‘during’ pictures.  But I do not.  It is easy enough with your imagination – pretend a music studio had been broken into, and every piece of gear was strewn all over the first floor of the house, as if the person who had broken in was not interested in the gear, or the instruments, but was certain there was cash hidden somewhere in this acoustic and computer melee.

It looked seriously hectic for about two days, as we rearranged, plugged in cables, re-rearranged, unplugging cables and reset up from yet another vantage point.

Although the humidity has gone way down, as Fall is starting to make an appearance, you would not know it if you walked into our house.  We were red-faced, sweaty, stripped down to shorts and a tee-shirt, hair piled up in an unruly bun for me, slicked back like a seal for Tomas.

The end result?  So worth the effort. Tomas has everything at his fingertips, and can write without interruption or unnecessary craning of his neck.  You can view the results, below.  I know, nothing really to compare it to, and I am sorry – it would have been fun to see a few shots of the mayhem.

A still from Ravana's game, with the screen now placed directly in the middle of the keyboard

A still from 'Ravana's Game,' with the screen now placed directly in the middle of the keyboard.

Now all of the Emulator's are to the right of the keyboard, in instrumentation bank order

Now all of the Emulator's are to the left of the keyboard, in instrumentation bank order.

Tomas working out the beginning melody. I snuck up on him. The chair and the light over the computer is my area.

Tomas working out the beginning melody. I snuck up on him. The chair and the light over the computer is my area.

There is a reason we do not have a shot facing Tomas from my area – How much gear do you really want to see working under the bowels of the table?  Like any good Martha Stewarts, we are only showing the pretty part.

Once it was all finished, Tomas began dictating every Emu pre-set to me, six banks all told, and we wrapped up every loose cable, tightened every Emu bank, and set up all of the Emu’s with multiple outputs for greater separation.

After all of that, Tomas is, as you see from the last picture, immersed in writing without any glitches, hassles, or uncomfortable working conditions for either of us.

On a personal note – the playing and recording of the drums and percussion reminded me of my long-ago step-son Seth Grusin, from my short and ill-fated marriage to Scott Grusin,over 25 years ago. Seth was a percussion prodigy,  when he was only 7 years old, he would be in the shower, bellowing out a song, and drumming madly on the shower walls.  His father recorded it one day and sent me a copy.  Seth used to come over to my brother Kerrigan’s house, where Kerry had a drum set, and Seth fearlessly climbed up on the drum seat, took the sticks, and started playing as hard as he could.  We would stand there, a bit in awe, wondering if the late Keith Moon had somehow set up home in this child’s body.

I have been trying to find him, and at some point I believe I will, and I hope he is still drumming.  I hope he is happy. I have missed him for half of my life.

Seth!  Donde esta Usted?

This entry was posted in Composing, Emulators, Film, Humor, Kelly Mahan Jaramillo, Music, Percussion, photos, Ravana's Game, recording, Studio, Tomas Hradcky, Vocals, writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to “Ravana’s Game” Update for September

  1. Pingback: New and Improved! « American Dumpling

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