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MY BLOG: Every day for a year. Day 46. ‘Recording with Double Trouble-almost’

I saw this pic today and it kinda struck a chord with me (excuse the pun). I rarely talk about my dealings with the music industry, mostly because I think it mundane and I don’t want to be that person who cries, “well I would be this if so and so had not happened.” It’s tedious, untrue and frankly annoying. I have of course had many angsty moments, just like anyone else who takes this path. The “willingness to cooperate” from this picture brought back some memories. I have lost count of the record deals, agents, offers and opportunities that I’ve tied concrete boots around because of my “unwillingness.” None more so than my deal to record an album with the legendary rhythm section, “Double Trouble”. Yep, those guys. Tommy Shannon and Chris Layton. Junior Brantly and Jimmy Vaughan were also on board for this project. (I can already hear some of you…”Stevie, what’s wrong with you! 🙂 ) With me still in Australia and the record label in the USA, much pre-production was being done prior to my leaving to join the band. During this time the label owner and producer decided I would replace Junior Brantly’s vocals on a song he had just finished recording with this unit. Junior Brantley is an exceptional talent, and at the time I thought to myself why? He sounds brilliant. BUT this was an opportunity of a lifetime so I said yes of course. Now pointing out the obvious, Junior Brantly is a man, with man like tonsils and range. I am not a man 🙂 My range is different. It’s just physics in the main. I know there are exceptions, but not in this case, and definitely not for this track. Whilst I have a ‘wideish’ vocal range, it starts and ends in my zone. This song of Junior Brantly’s went off the scale for me at the low end, and no matter how hard I tried, nothing, not even a bad note came out. :-). Like all things, it is never one incident that sets fire to the best-laid plans of mice and men, and I, of course, wanted this projected to get off the ground more than anything. I really did keep myself well in check for the longest period of time during our discussions. I consider myself an amiable chap, but this was the tipping point. “Stevie Paige, I pay the bills. You will sing it in this key, and you will do what you are told!” This tore it for me. Charming went down the drain and flaming ranga took over. I never got to meet Junior, Jimmy, Chris or Tommy. I still have all the scratch demos of their work, some of it wonderful, some of it as you’d imagine live studio scratch tracks to sound. These, along with the contract remains in a plastic case for posterity for what was nearly something awesome. Perhaps like Ms. Mitchell, (if indeed the quote is accurate) who found peace in painting, I should stick to writing 🙂

Thanks for listening.

Until tomorrow, Stevie. x