Volume 3 Book 1 Part 8 of
Living in the Bonus Round

Jimmy enters EMG Studio on his way
to becoming a great recording artist..

[ Book 2-10 ] -- [ Pt 1 ] [ Pt 2 ] [ Pt 3 ] [ Pt 4 ] [ Pt 5 ]
[ Pt 6 ] [ Pt 7 ] [ Pt 8 ] [ Pt 9 ] [ Pt 10 ]

October 6-10, 2002.
CDs to Tech.
"YOU ARE INSANE!" "Guess what he wants to do now...". "That's impossible." "Now, how do you plan to pull that off??"

I don't know why people say these things to me as if they're going to make a difference. All I said was I wanted to go into the recording studio, make a cast album and manufacture it. In 10 days.

With no money.

So, of course, the first thing I did was get on the floor and grovel to Kim Espy, begging him for studio time. Then I groveled and begged Doug the engineer to let us have a little delay on paying him (until we actually sold some), then I begged Stu at the manufacturer for a super bargain price (after which I told him it needed to be a rush order), then I begged another friend to front us the money to give to Stu, then I begged my friend Ernie to design the graphics for free.

See, you can do a lot when you learn the fine art of groveling and begging. Believe me, when a 6'2" man gets on the floor in front of you whining and crying, it's hard to say no (apparently).

Then I told Jimmy, who has no experience in studio singing, "Okay, here's the deal. We go in, we do the introductory dialogue portions of each song to give listeners a taste of the show and sing the songs in one take, maybe two. In other words, this cast album will literally be LIVE in the studio. Are ya with me?"

Not knowing any better, he said, "Yes."

Rico at the front desk of EMG Studio.

You see, people don't actually DO this. They go into the studio, they take a week on each song, they overdub, they "fix" things. They do multiple takes. They spend hours and hours. But we didn't have that luxury. This one was going to be done live and whatever we got, we got. This had the potential to be an unmitigated disaster. What if Jimmy couldn't do it? What *I* couldn't do it? What if? What if? What if? The clock was ticking...

Doug Sanderson, the engineer. Kim Espy, studio owner.

Belle & Moxie, the studio dogs.

Amazingly, it all came together easily and quickly to Jimmy once he threw his headphones off and just sang as if on the stage. And we were blessed with a great piano, the one that used to belong to Stan Freeman before he died. Then, Ronda jumped in and started lending her expert ear and suddenly we had a producer! *whew*

Ronda Espy jumped in and assumed the role of producer
and Jimmy hugger.

Coupla studio shots of Jimmy and Steve.

It was deja vu. The old team was back together again. You could feel the energy and spirit of The Last Session pervading the room! In fact, there on the wall was the giant collage of pictures from TLS put together by -- was it Tina? Lindsey? -- and presented to Kim & Ronda.

(Click on picture for larger image)

Even Michael Alden and Lori dropped in from New York.

Now, Lori, had seen The Big Voice that weekend before and I was nervous about what she would write. Lori is known for saying EXACTLY what Lori thinks and holding nothing back. In her online journal, though, I was pleased to see that she wrote:

As many of you know I was a bit apprehensive about the show, thinking I was probably not going to like it very much. Well, I must admit that it was actually pretty good. Very well written, I laughed a lot, I got a bit teary a time or two, and the songs work very well in the story. And while most of you know that Steve is not an actor, Jimmy is really, really good. I dragged Tina and Jeff along and good times were had :)
Now, Lori darling, why would you think you wouldn't like it very much? And as for my acting, I'll have you know, that I spent five weeks in Rochester acting! :-)

Anyway, we quickly got the CD recorded, mixed and mastered, then off to Stu. Then it was time to get to the Zephyr on Wednesday to begin teching for our big opening on Saturday the 12th (hoping beyond hope that the CDs and everything else would arrive at the same time). Unfortunately, I woke that morning with a terrific stomachache. Ugh. I felt so awful -- and tech days are tedious anyway. Focusing lights, setting each moment, etc.

Tech day at the Zephyr.

Gary Guidinger runs the Zephyr with Linda Toliver.
We have two theatre doggies, Charlie & Holly.

Jim Brochu, Steve Schalchlin teching.

House manager, Marlana.

Then just before we finished, Linda came running in, "Jay Leno is outside!" So, of course we all had to go check it out. "Hey Jay! Come and see our play!!"


[ Book 2-10 ] -- [ Pt 1 ] [ Pt 2 ] [ Pt 3 ] [ Pt 4 ] [Pt 5 ]
Pt 6 ] [ Pt 7 ] [ Pt 8 ] [ Pt 9 ] [ Pt 10 ]

© 1996-2002 by Steve Schalchlin.
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