A rushed visit home
Trip Start Mar 18, 2003
55Trip End Apr 08, 2007
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It was five years ago that I last experienced a typical Oklahoma summer
I got see pretty much my whole family, which was a very nice treat. The only ones missing were my twin nephews, who were up in Massachusetts with my sister-in-law. My brother in Texas and his family came up the first weekend, so we got to see each other for the first time in over a year and a half. A visit to the Tulsa Zoo was a big hit with my nephew. Then my other brother came down from Massachusetts with his daughter a few days later - unfortunately just after the others had returned to Austin! Due to the recording commitments I had though, we barely had any time together, as I had to head out of town the following morning. Still, we did go out to see the famous musical "Oklahoma!" at Discoveryland, which was admittedly an uncomfortably muggy affair. My niece was thrilled to be able to have her picture taken with the actors afterwards though.
From the 10th, my old bandmates and I began the recording mess. When I referred to a marathon, it was largely because of this very event. The initial plan was to record twelve songs together for completion as an album. Hope was riding on us being able to do the lot of them at my bassist Kieth's house in Cushing, OK on his fledgling recording system. This meant, of course, that we had to do a crash course in learning the ins and outs of the recording software by trial and error. It turned out that the software was the easier issue - it was the mixing board that was creating problems. Despite the fact that we had an eight-channel board, the computer was only able to recognize a single input (we later discovered the board didn't have a firewire); so, the multi-tracked drums, the double-tracked guitars and the bass track all fed in as one sole signal. Anyone familiar with recording would know what a nightmare this would create in mixdown (not to mention that we'd have to forget about punching anything in).
As a result, Jim, our drummer, had to go in and lay down drum track after drum track. Just messing about learning the ropes took one day. The drums took the next. That went smoothly enough to net us the bare bones of about 17 songs, plus 10 of the 12 album tracks from a previous session that we decided to keep for the sake of ease
The last couple days I basically spent catching up on whatever I had time left to do. Clothes shopping, sorting through old stuff to get rid of, splitting time between my parents, returning the rented car. Somehow I even managed to cram in a bit of shooting around downtown. As stated before, the time didn't work out to be quite sufficient, but I can't say I didn't have a productive trip. My brother used to complain about how he felt like he never had time to catch his breath when he came home to visit. I think I've come to understand what he meant by that.