Studio Jams #47

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about my first appearance on the TV-show “Studio Jams”, episode #34Today I’ll write about my second Studio Jams experience – episode #47.

As I wrote in my first post about Studio Jams I was very happy to be invited to participate – and being invited back was an even bigger pleasure. So when Producer Tom Emmi asked me if I wanted to do a Swedish show, I agreed instantly.

The line up for Studio Jams #47: Mattias Bylund, Jannik Jensen, Pontus Engborg, Tracy Silverman & Soren Reiff, outside Svenska Grammofon Studion, Gothenburg, Sweden
The line up for Studio Jams #47: Mattias Bylund, Jannik Jensen, Pontus Engborg, Tracy Silverman & Soren Reiff, outside Svenska Grammofon Studion, Gothenburg, Sweden

The musicians for Studio Jams #47

Tom told me that he would bring violin virtuoso Tracy Silverman, but wanted me to find the rest of the musicians. I hadn’t been living in Sweden for that long, so my network of Swedish musicians wasn’t that big. But I had connected to a Swedish drummer, Pontus Engborg on Myspace and Facebook. Pontus and I have a lot of friends in common from the L.A. scene.

Pontus knew the Swedish keyboard player Mattias Bylund, and I wanted to bring in Jannik, a Danish bass player, who also played on the 34th episode. So the lineup was cleared pretty fast. Tom knew of a studio, but if everything was to go as planned, we had to meet around 8 o’clock on a Sunday morning, and be done by noon since Tracy, Tom and the crew had a flight from Gothenburg in the early afternoon.

The control room in Svenska Grammofon Studion, Gothenburg, Sweden
The control room in Svenska Grammofon Studion, Gothenburg, Sweden

Pontus lived in Gothenburg so an early session wasn’t that big a problem for him. Mattias did too – actually he ended up driving directly from another gig to the studio and slept a little in his car, before the crew woke him up and we started the session.  But for me and Jannik, an 8pm session – 350 kilometers from home wasn’t preferable – so we decided to go to Gothenburg on the Saturday.

My guitar and rig

Friday, the day before we left, I got my multi-effect back from a small repair. When I turned it on I realized that all my presets had been erased at the repair-service. Normally it shouldn’t be a problem, but the unit wouldn’t read my back-up. I realized that I had to make a few “all round” presets and then accept that it would be like that for the session. Not optimal, but it should work out OK.

Saturday morning when I tried the new presets again, to see if they needed any adjustment, the situation became even worse. My main guitar – the Washburn that I normally used for “everything”, was dead. It had worked without problems for I don’t know how long, but Saturday … It let me down.

I had to make a quick decision – and I decided to bring the brown ES-346 that I had gotten a few weeks earlier. As I wrote in another post – it was very badly adjusted when I got it. I wasn’t that comfortable with it, but since it needed a lot of attention, it was the guitar I had played the most during the past weeks, apart from my Washburn.

I would be lying if I said that I knew the guitar well, or that I had any idea about how it would react with my live rig, since I hadn’t played it outside my studio. So the combination of new presets in my rig, a guitar that i didn’t know, playing with musicians I didn’t know either, and then not knowing what we were going to play, wasn’t the most preferable scenario – but that’s life.

Getting ready in the studio for Studio Jams #47
Getting ready in the studio for Studio Jams #47

Music solves everything

Tom, Tracy and the crew were staying at the same hotel as Jannik and I, so we had breakfast together – and we could instantly feel it would be a great and fun day … a lot of laughs from the first hello. And when we met with the other guys in the studio and started playing, the music washed away all concerns about presets, guitars and so. Suddenly the only thing that mattered was the music. The interaction between us all made me forget everything about the technical stuff, even what country I was in and what nationality the others were … once again the  international language of music overruled everything. That’s what so magical about playing music.

If you want to hear some samples from the show you can listen to the song “I wish” here and to the song “Human nature” here.

Hope you like the tracks and can hear that we had fun while we recorded them.

All the very best

Soren

NB1: You can also read about this episode at the official Studio Jams site here

NB2: You can also visit Mattias Bylund’s blog, if you’re ok with swedish – he has written about his experience of the session here

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