We've been working on this CD since November 2014 and have been looking forward to sharing this information with everyone we know.
We recorded a wide repertoire of tunes, most of which are our favorites. In the selecting process, my main focus was to use more traditional Sligo style tunes, which I learned from recordings of great Irish fiddlers such as Andy McGann, Paddy Reynolds, Sean Maguire, Martin Wynne, and Michael Coleman. My teacher Brian Conway taught me many of these tunes, which he learned from Andy McGann and Martin Wynne.
It was a long process through which I've grown as a person and a musician in self-discipline and patience.
Pre-Production: On Our Mark!
At the outset of this project, we knew we wanted to use our favorite tunes. We played around with various jigs, reels, hornpipes, and even barn dances, gathering them into an assortment of sets. Some we knew, without a doubt, we were going to use. Sitting in our living room with a notebook, we worked through our tunes, rearranging tunes into sets, and jotting down the best of the best as we played them.
Dylan listened to me play the melody as he worked out his dynamic guitar variations for each one. Some sets, we'd play only one time before we were absolutely sure it would be on the CD--it just sparked, "This is it!" Practicing 3-4 sets a day over a two week period, we settled on the final set list and were ready to plan the recording sessions for production.
Production: Get Set!
John Whelan is not only a fabulous accordion player, he is also a veteran recording artist. I met him for the first time when I was seven years old. He has been a mentor to me in so many different ways, and I was ecstatic when we decided to record with him. But, between his traveling for gigs and work with other musicians, scheduling recording time with him meant many weeks before we would have a finished product. We met once a month over a four month period, in both his Connecticut studio, and our own in home studio. Once we laid down our fourteen tracks in the studio, they were passed into the hands of our sound engineer, Thomas Boyer, for the final mix and mastering.
Meanwhile, we were busy planning the cover design and program notes. We used photos from a November photo shoot at various picturesque venues in Providence, Rhode Island with Matt Ferrara, the graphic designer for our CD.
With digital files and graphic design complete, it was time to manufacture the finished product. That's where our "momager" took the wheel and steered us to our release date. We manufactured the physical CD through Disk Maker, and have the digital download available through CD Baby. The finished product we titled, Heart on a String, is marketed in a trifold pocket CD holder, in addition to the digital download.
We are so happy to say it's finally finished. If you'd like to purchase a CD, you can find the digital download here on CD Baby or the physical copy here on our website!
You can also purchase autographed CDs at one of our gigs. To see upcoming performances dates, click here for our website calendar.