Cultivating Good Musicians Part 2.
Cultivating Good Musicians Part 1.
Interview: Part 1
Interview: Part 2
A Little Lesson: #1
Song Story: Let the Spirit Rain
Song Story: Unconditional Love
Song Story: Peace of God
Song Story: One Moment
Cool Water Rehearsal
David Raven: Drums
Tony Green: Bass
Susan Constantini Green: Piano
Sandra Stephens: Vocals
Hank Linderman: Engineer
Eric Valente: Director
Kyle Gilbertson: Editor
“Change the World”
Change the World Film clip directed and produced by the Cox Brothers.
You will find the song on the Prisoner of Hope Album.
We Need a King
After posting the story and video (below) of my poor Michael Buble impersonation, I thought it would be good to show something of the famed and oft mentioned Linda McCrary for whom I was mistaken.
It remains one of my big disappointment in life not to have recorded a second Amazing Stories project with Linda and the gang. Lots of songs were written, we had several false starts but for one reason or another it remains a another ‘nice idea’. The above (tiny) piece of footage is from “Chris Falson and the Amazing Stories” album and video circa 1995 (I think), produced and directed by Bill Kinnon and Imbi Medri.
Here’s my bad impersonation of Michael Buble. I am performing at a concert in Montreux Switzerland.
But please let me explain….
Michael Buble, You are Safe
(c) 2007 Chris Falson
Last year I was invited to play an acoustic set (as the support act) for the Oslo Gospel Choir in the Stravinsky Auditorium in the beautiful city of Montreux. There were many reasons why I ‘just had to do this’.
Any chance to go to Europe again is reason number one, then…. the Stravinsky Auditorium is one of the most famous concert halls in Europe…. it is also the ‘main event’ at the Montreux Jazz festival….. and to perform on this stage, in this city…… well imagine what this would look like on my resume?….. and…. I just had get out of LA for a week.
The Oslo Gospel Choir, though relatively unknown here in the US consistently pack out concert halls all over Europe and their CDs, a blend of Andre Crouch inspired gospel music and Norwegian folk songs often out sell many of the better known pop artists of today.
It was suggested that I do one song with the ‘choir’ and so I sent over a track (demo) of a song I had written for another artist. The song is called Place of Hope and my demo features the dynamic vocals of Linda McCrary. Linda’s bio reads like a who’s who of the rock world and when she sings you believe every word that comes out of her mouth. And here lies the making of a true farce. When the ‘choir’ received my track they assumed this was ‘Chris Falson’ singing lead…… wow he sings like a black woman….. and so they rehearsed the song in that Key….. and Linda is an Alto and I am a Baritone. Hmmmm.
So I arrived at the ‘Concert Hall’ and as I was entering the rehearsal room one of the singers introduced himself and said “I really love your voice”….. and I thought…. that’s nice….. he must have heard one of my albums.
Anyway, the piano player set’s up the song and I began to sing my part, . and everybody was just staring at me…… I already felt uncomfortable without my guitar to ‘lean on’….. and this wasn’t my key and I am not really a singer (and my paranoia was working over time). We rehearsed the song a few more times, each rendition sounding a little more confident….. and after a while the choir stepped it up and I ‘almost’ enjoyed myself.
At a coffee break, the piano player asked me who sang on the demo I had sent him and when I told him it was Linda McCrary he said of course and then burst out laughing. He brought me back into the rehearsal room and shared the joke with everyone else. I apologized for my error and then for my vocals….. offering all the excuses one does in such an awkward situation ……. I was quite willing to forgo the experience of singing on stage with them…. but they assured me that once they recovered from the shock…. he sings like a man baby!….. that they liked my smoky voice….. and my phrasing…. (Oh don’t stop) and they were all looking forward to slotting the song into their second set.
There was still another catch for me…. well two actually. On accepting the ‘gig’ I had to promise to wear an ‘outfit’…. a black suit would you believe….. and I am a jeans a T shirt kind of guy…. suits are for weddings, funerals….. and…..
Well that reminds me of a joke…. what do you call a musician in a suit?…..
Anyway…. I donned my little black outfit and was raring to go. The next difficulty was that because the event was being filmed….. all stage movement had been scripted….. and so ‘there was no way that I could play guitar during this song’. And this posed a problem for me because ‘that’s who I are…. I play guitar’. I am no Michael Buble.
As you can see….. I am not sure what to do with my hands….. I don’t know how to use the stage, being so accustomed to standing behind a mic. So that’s the story behind this little video. I had a lot more fun at the dress rehearsal, hamming up the ‘vegas singer’ role…. but I was told to tone it down. I was in Switzerland after all!