Monday, September 23, 2013


The BBE's first studio album, "What'll I  Do"  is about to be released!  And, like all musical projects, there is a story.  
I wanted people to see the beginning of this band and, to that end, decided to put rehearsals, special guests, practices, and first read-throughs on the BBE YouTube channel  The initial response to these videos made me wonder if the band might put together a CD of the most "liked" songs... go into the studio and re-record a few of your favorites, now that we've had a chance to make them our own.  
I thought about calling the CD, "YouTube Sessions" but decided that we may get into some legal gray areas with that title... so instead, I named it after the first song we recorded for the album.  Like our shows, we featured the whole band as well as smaller configurations to highlight the MANY talents of the instrumentalists.  
I chose songs which run the gamut, but which are all in the style of big band or at least the BBE's version of a big band.   So, you will get to hear "Spiderman" and "Can I Steal a Little Love" from our show, but you will also hear Jeff Carver (our trumpet player) play swampy, New Orlean's style jazz licks on "Devil's in the Jukebox" before switching to sweet melodies on the title track.  You will hear our intern, Nick, join in on the harmonies of Citizen Cope's "Brother Lee," my a cappella peer, Greg Bannwarth, add vocal percussion to "Birth of the Blues,"  Aaron Moe, make you feel like you just stepped into the Copa Room on "One for My Baby (And Another One for the Road)," and hear Dave Stanoch (band leader and percussionist) on a special, live bonus track - just as if he was in your living room.  Too, we've included "Hallelujah" and "Go Light Your World" based solely on your requests. 
I cannot wait to see where we go from here.  I know I will look back on the days of recording with the best of memories, but I'm already looking ahead with even more excitement to your response.  

What'll I Do

One for My Baby (and Another One for the Road)
Devil's in the Jukebox
What'll I Do
Brother Lee
Birth of the Blues
Can I Steal a Little Love
Go Light Your World
My Girl Tonight (LIVE)
I Need You By My Side (LIVE)

Thursday, September 19, 2013

The History of Music Recording

Do you ever wonder what music was like before iPods and Mp3 players? For starters, audio devices weren’t as compact as they are now and you couldn’t download music with the click of a button. Here is a brief history of recording that will explain just how far we’ve come in the world of music!

The Record Player: 1920s

Recording technology started out with an acoustic horn instead of electric motors or amplifiers. The earlier record players relied on acoustic horns. However, as home radios became more popular the  record player evolved. People started purchasing the record player that had electric motors or amplifiers for better sound.

The Tape Recorder: 1940s-1950s

Tape recording brought a more convenient and inexpensive option to the music recording industry.  It allowed producers to alter the music. For example, they were able to cut sounds out, rearrange sounds, compile recordings, mix sounds and fade sound in or out. Before these features musicians either had to record their song perfectly or they had to remake the entire recording.

Stereo Sound: 1950s-1960s

Stereo sound included two microphones, two amplifiers and two loudspeakers.  The first stereo sound recordings were available on reel-to-reel tape.

The Cassette: 1960s-1980s

Cassettes ruled the music world for decades. Cassettes were the most popular recording devices for home recording and pre-recording listening applications. The cassette was the first movement toward personal audio.

The CD: 1990s-Present

When the compact audio disc (CD) was first introduced it wasn’t a big hit.  It took almost a decade for the CD to become more popular than the cassette but the CD eventually became the most popular home recording format. Today, iPods and Mp3 players have overtaken the CD.

If music recording had not evolved, we wouldn’t get to hear the great beats or the  music effects as well as we do today. Musicians weren’t able to make a mistake while recording unless they wanted to re-record the whole song!  Today we have the privilege of listening to music whenever and wherever we want to. The best part is, now we can listen to Big Band Music the right way—with ample volume and much appreciation!