Girl Singer (1999)

The newest Paula Cole or Sheryl Crow. My first appearance (Todd's too) on a recording with Mike Keneally. Fanboy heaven, fanboy hell.

  • Me: Drums, Bass, Synthesizer, Ebow and Electric Guitars, Production
  • Also Featuring: Girl Singer, Todd Larowe, Mike "Bad Jesus" McMahon, Mark Moorhead

[Girl Singer] was an odd bird. She talked a lot and maybe even got stuff done, but mostly she talked a lot. Like, too much. She was this girl singer who had something of a gift, but it was mostly her ability to talk too much. She came to me through Mike Keneally, who said she was this dynamite artist and perfect pitch singer who could just pop out a performance so fast it was stupid (it was this project that made me start to question his judgment). He supposedly was going to be the producer, guitarist, bassist, and whatever. Supposedly I was going to be the drummer and fader monkey. Well, maybe that was to be the case if she could have a-fucking-fforded him! They were talking up some spec deal and it fell through, so here I was, left with her on my own, and so I called up my newfound guitarist buddy Todd Larowe who was more than happy to step into Keneally's abandoned shoes. The Keneally Konnection was not totally severed; [Girl Singer] did have one tune (Toddliness) that got some Keneally Krafting but it was limited to some additional guitar after Todd and I did the heavy lifting, and some hard slash editing that I personally think was shit. Only one song of the bunch got the production I think it deserved and that my abilities at the time were able to give it (Chainlink Fence). Todd and I worked on that like dogs one night and got it quite a bit like an acoustic version she had that she dared us to record with a few ideas. We got the music bed done and she protested. Finally she shut up till I showed her her list of ideas, then showed her how the key and tempo were matched exactly, and the feel was more locked in than the original because we looped 4 bars of drums! Finally she shutup and put down some vocals and it turned out great. Somewhere along the line, we had Bad Jesus join us on fretless bass, so we at least were playing as a band, cutting most of the tracks together. [Girl Singer] was always talking in someone's ear when she should have been listening. She annoyed us with exactly that. She all but refused to sing a part more than 3 times, even if the recording was blown out by her unexpected dynamic meanderings. Likewise, she would change lyrics each time she sang it, and combined with the fact that she always managed to blow a section or two, it was hard sometimes to even convince her to sing the song enough so that I could even edit a track together from scraps! The last several songs we did had no particular attempt at production done; she had pissed me off sufficiently with promises of this and that and never came through. The final straw was the week of the Columbine shootings when she decided she was going to be the anthemess of the post-shooting period. So she talked me into doing this song for her, but I said it would be three days of work, no more. So Todd came in and played the piano, some guitar, bass, and I played drums, and she sang. Then Bad Jesus heard the song and wanted to sing on it (we had no time to involve him on bass), so he and I did laboriously detailed background vocals for a section, which come mix time, [Girl Singer] nearly deleted. She was a pushy broad for the amount I got paid. But Todd and Mike and I put in some honest effort, so the songs remain in the canon. Those poor guys however got up on stage with her to do some open mic playing and it was a fucking disaster. For all her micromanaging, she couldn't count bars worth a shit and couldn't remember her own songs! Sometimes there just isn't enough money in the world to do this shit.