So, Wintergrass came and went this weekend. It is the largest bluegrass festival on the west coast, and the largest indoor festival in the country. Like all Wintergrasses, there was an excess of fun and a severe deficit of sleep, so I'm physically exhausted and mentally jazzed.
Jamming at Wintergrass is almost an event unto itself. Because it is indoors, jam circles will literally jam all night. You can find signed, touring musicians jamming with little old ladies and five year old kids right along side of them. This year I brought some recording equipment with me because I wanted to have some of that music for posterity.
I bought an omni-directional microphone on the way to the festival. An AKG Perception 420. I bought it because it is multi-pattern (I can get figure 8, omni, and cardioid patterns out of it, and it also has a bass cut switch that really helps with low frequency rumble from things like crowds in the hallways.
http://www.akg.com/site/products/powers … ge,EN.html
I also brought my Fostex MR-8 multi-tracker to plug the new mic into.
http://www.fostexinternational.com/docs … MkII.shtml
The plan was to simply get permission to record the group, drop the mic in omni-mode in the middle, and record what came out.
I recorded five tracks from the first jam circle I came from and took the recorder back to my space to listen to the results. I was absolutely dumbfounded at the quality of the recording. Clarity, tone, everything was there. It almost sounded mixed. My idea then grew from "I'm doing this for my own amusement" to "I can put a compilation disk together from this material."
Four days later and I have over 40 tracks down, almost three hours of raw audio from a dozen different jam sessions. I have permission from the festival to produce a concept album, and if they like it they'll put it on the shelf and use it to raise revenue (for the record, Wintergrass is a 501-(c)3 non-profit) I'd like this to become an annual thing: "Monsters in the Halls 201X."
I also have permission of some of the artists to spread their stuff around for feedback. That is where you come in. As I get this stuff edited, I'll link to it here and I'd appreciate your discerning ears.
I love being busy.
Someday we'll win this thing...www.aclosesecond.com