Adding real drums and bass

Today I’ll write a little about the next stage in the development of Saturday Brunch. Today you’ll hear what happened when Gary Novak and Jimmy Haslip added their golden touch to my song, by adding real drums and bass, instead of my scratch programming.

I introduced Jimmy Haslip and Gary Novak earlier on this blog. If you haven’t read that post, I can easily sum it up: They are outstanding musicians who have played with almost every artist imaginable within the modern and groovy jazz world. I guess no matter what track you find them on, you won’t be disappointed with their playing.

I’ve also described my workflow around my demo’s and how I prepare my demo’s for the real sessions in an earlier post, so I won’t waste time with that here. Let’s move straight to the cut of this track.

I gave Jimmy and Gary the scores I wrote for the song, so they could take notes while they heard my music. The scores I write for these kinds of sessions, are best described as a mixture of lead sheets and regular bass scores… Meaning: I’ve notated the bass part I’ve programmed and the chords, together with a few things that the musicians should be aware of, such as breaks or rhythmical arrangements in the melody, that they might want to support somehow. I can’t remember if there was anything I wrote that needed to be changed or, if either Gary or Jimmy wanted to add something by hand to the scores, when they heard my demo – they did with some of my tracks. Like noting if I had programmed side-stick snare hits, muted bass notes or anything like that.

Jimmy Haslip and Gary Novak in the studio, recording for the Gratitude album with Soren Reiff
Jimmy Haslip and Gary Novak in the studio, recording for the Gratitude album with Soren Reiff

After we listened to the demo I played for you the other day, we muted my scratch drums and bass, pressed record and it sounded like this … ok, they played like this – I mixed the track afterwards, so it sounded a bit more rough and dry when we did the session – but mixing and all that is another story.

I think it’s fantastic to hear how they both pick up the best from my demo, and get inspired by that, and in addition to that make it personal and add a lot of small detailed variations all over the track. I really like the way Gary and Jimmy jam around the basic groove in the intro, how they interact and play more than I did on my demo, but the track still has a lot of room for my fills. And the way they both bring life to the groove in the a-part – and how Gary supports my theme with an open high-hat … I just love it.

I’m really looking forward to hearing what you think – I hope you like it too.

And again, remember – all samples on this blog is only for listening here – they may not be reposted or used for anything without my written permission. But I hope you’ll share the link to this blog with anyone you think will enjoy it.

Next time I’ll play the same piece of music, but after Michito Sanchez has added some groovy things to the track too.

Till next time – all the very best


2 Replies to “Adding real drums and bass”

  1. Søren… You have a very special gift, a rare talent, as well as a strong passion for your craft and ethic of work. Add on top of that a strong dose of modesty, that although completely unnecessary becomes you well and make you… you! It is felt in what you write as well as the music you create, and it is contagious, which is why I believe all the amazing musicians feel free to bring their talent to the (turn)table, that which in turn inspires you to give and create even more.

    When I listen to these short bits and read of the process to create, it inspires me as well, despite I work with something entirely different.

    I can hardly wait to listen to the finished album!

    1. Thank you SO much for your very sweet comment …Thank you … I just love my work, and feel privileged to be able to have music as my work!!

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