Thursday, January 31, 2013

Sound City...

This evening we went to the lovely Sunshine Cinema to see a special screening of Dave Grohl's new film - Sound City...

The film is a brilliant documentary all about Sound City recording studios, from all the artists that have recorded their and all the amazing stories they have to tell, to the rare Neve recording desk that gave all the records recorded there such a unique sound.

I had never heard of Sound City before I heard about the film, but once I realised just how many people had recorded there, and the albums that had been recorded there I quickly realised it was a pretty big part of music history.

There were interviews with Fleetwood Mac, Tom Petty, Neil Young, Nirvana, Rick Springsteen, Nine Inch Nails, Metallica, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, John Fogarty and a whole load of other people. They all recorded music there at one stage or another.

In fact Tom Petty recorded a LOT of his albums there, he and the Heartbreakers were even Johnny Cash's session band for the album he recorded there. There were loads of great stories throughout the film but one of the best ones, I thought, was about how Mick Fleetwood first came to meet Stevie Nicks and Linsday Buckingham. They had both recorded an album there (when they were a duo) and Mick Fleetwood was visiting the studio to have a look at the Neve board as he was thinking of recording something there. When he was there the studio played the Nicks & Buckingham album to demonstrate the quality.

Apparently Fleetwood was listening to it super loud and Buckingham was in another studio and could hear his song playing, so he went to go and see who was playing it so loudly... that was the first time they met. A little later Mick Fleetwood's guitarist quit just before they were due to start recording so he asked Lindsay - he said that he'd only play if Stevie Nicks could play too... and that was that! 

Unfortunately the studio's closed now (due to the new digital age of music recording), but Dave Grohl managed to buy the Neve recording desk and put it in his own studio - 606. As well as tell the story about the songs recorded at Sound City, he wanted to bring some of the big artists back and make new records together using the same recording equipment as all those years ago...

So at the end of the film are these amazing sessions with Stevie Nicks and Rick Springsteen writing and playing new songs with Dave Grohl, and then right at the end it shows when Paul McCartney and the three members of Nirvana all got together, had a little jam and ended up writing a brilliant song together!

So now, there's a super group called the Sound City players (Foo Fighters + Nick, Fogarty, Springsteen) who have been doing a couple of gigs to promote the film and the new album that's out... hopefully they'll be coming to New York soon!!!

It was an absolutely brilliant documentary, it was full of people who are so passionate about what they do and so inspiring too - it was fantastic. I can't wait to watch it again...

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