Friday, May 6, 2016

Sound Harbor Strings Snafus

It's been 7 months since I finished my last cruise contract and I have been working tirelessly to get back out there.

Obstacles I have to overcome are looking for new musicians because each cruise line hires different ensemble types so having just one ensemble really limits the line(s) where you can work. Then I've discovered that the cruise lifestyle really doesn't correspond with American musicians. I've found countless non-Americans to go but very, very few Americans, and in that hurdle is the distance factor. It's required to have an ensemble video. If you're in Europe it's not as difficult nor as far to travel to get together, but in the USA, having people travel from LA, Seattle, and NYC to meet and record is extremely difficult and costly. Then trying to fit everyone's schedules together to find a free week...well, hah!

I was one month away from moving to Europe to record with musicians I've been in contact with for months, but couldn't record a video and therefore, couldn't get work together.

In that month, somehow I pulled together a quartet of people and found a free week where everyone agreed to travel to a semi-central location and do multiple recordings.

It was an exhausting week. I woke up at 8 a.m. and the earliest I went to bed was midnight each day. I didn't usually get three meals and was pushing my body physically, mentally, and emotionally to its limits. So was everyone else.

We all succeeded and created 248 video/audio recordings!

We listened through them to find our best takes for each piece and then it was my turn to create the ultimate spreadsheet with each piece, composer, video number, audio number, audio time, each member's desired audio time, final audio times, and total video times.

In addition to all that went into the spreadsheet, I then had to create a pre-video to verify all the transitions and accuracy of the final clips. After this is all done for each ensemble video (there are 5 ensembles), someone else has to do the final post-production to make it all pretty and shiny to send to the cruise lines.

We've got most of the process done except for the final polishing. Hopefully they will all be completed by the end of the month and next month I will be back into the game and the career I love, performing on a cruise ship.

I'll keep you all updated on that, but in the meantime, I thought I would share some fun outtakes from the week's recording sessions. Enjoy!


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All four of us doing a test shot for the video. We're playing different tunes at the same time and having a blast doing so!


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Had to get the guitar out to figure the right chords for Edelweiss. I know the song best on guitar. Weird how musicians' brains work sometimes :)



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1,2,3, 1,2....    What comes after 2 again, Earle? HAHA



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"It helps if I read the music..."



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I was just kidding about it being in F#!! It's really in C haha!!



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"Isn't it illegal to give the viola the melody?"  ~Cliff's opinion



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My jacket is like the Dude's rug....or so I'm told.



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My cue failed and Earle couldn't contain his amusement :-D



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See me reading bass clef on my violin?!?!?



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Why do I have all these notes??!!??



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Are we supposed to play the 2nd ending??



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Then there were just fits of laughter. It was a fun week :-p



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Earle is just reserving his place in line lol



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How you count when you lose count.  oops



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The result of no sleep and too much caffeine...



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Your hand is covering the view finder.



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And the weirdest of all...there is no explanation.


I hope you have enjoyed all the crazy and fun outtakes from our recording session. We had tremendous fun putting it all together. Hopefully all the hard work results in a contract soon.

In the meantime, I have lots of news and changes that are about to happen. Stay tuned for some more excitement coming soon!!