I hope all is well with you! Lots of things are happening in my world at the moment. The most exciting new changes are about to take place in my music! My new album is reaching the final recording stages. I have completed all of the basic tracks, and my lead vocals.
What is leftover you ask?
Several tracks of background vocals, a few more keyboard parts, some percussion (tambourine and shaker... possibly cowbell!) and last but not least all of the lead guitar parts. That will be my favorite part of the process. I'm saving the best for last!
You may have noticed the photos above. I believe this guitar is going to change my guitar playing drastically over the next few years. It will first become apparent on my new record.
What are the changes you ask?
It will make many things possible that were not possible for me previously. I think the best way to describe what it is that I'm imagining is that the notes on the guitar will become elastic. Both chords and lead melodies will have this new "elasticity" because the guitar is fretless.
I've been waiting over a year for this instrument to be completed. It is a unique custom guitar specially built for me. It is a fretless SG made by Gibson that includes 2 very important modifications. The first is Auto Tune for guitar by Antares. This micro computer device processes each string individually with extremely low latency and can not only keep your guitar in tune; it can instantly tune the entire instrument to other tunings, open string chords and more. In fact it can process each string individually twice, allowing for 12 string sounds or even baritone 12 string. Most importantly however is the fact that since this particular guitar has no frets it will enable me to do some physically impossible things. Typically a fretless guitar would be impossible to use for chords. Anteres Auto Tune will allow me to play chords on fretless guitar and venture into new musical territory. This is very exciting and inspirational! I anticipate pedal steel type harmony slides and other unique chordal sliding techniques to develop. But that's not all...
The other component of this guitar that will propel me in new territory is the Sustainiac. It will allow for infinite sustain with the ability to switch between the fundamental and other partial harmonics.
What does this mean?
I can control the octave of the feedback generated and I can slide the notes on the guitar smoothly without effortless sustain. This will all translate to many new creative approaches to lead guitar for me. There are so many variations of dynamics to be developed.
The first chapter will be written on this new album. I have 2 instrumentals I plan to use the guitar on. One is currently called "Truth" and the other is called "Funky 15." The titles may change by the time the record comes out. One thing is certain though, this guitar will be a big part of the sound of those 2 songs. I anticipate a whole new melodic style to develop over the next few years. A more vocal approach to melodies and some totally unique tones. For me this feels like the equivalent of walking on the moon.
In any case, I'm very excited about the record and all of the cool things I've been able to incorporate into it. I've got live string quartet and brass and woodwinds (recorded by Geoff Emerick), special vocal appearances from some extremely talented people (To be named later!) and I even have my wife Megan, my daughters Zola and Ceylon as well as my step daughter Mia all singing some background parts on the song "On Fire."
I can't wait to share the record with all of you! The countdown to completion is on! Then we hit the road in March! So much to do and so little time! See you on the road!
New Record! http://www.pledgemusic.com/projects/dweezilzappa