More about the Session

The Session:  The fellas would drive in on Friday night from Chicago.  We’d set up and just pick a song I’d written and get after it. I have no recollection of which session this was from, other than we did three or four of these rendezvous affairs in Ann Arbor throughout the 90’s and into the next century.  Kraig once commented to me that some of my songs were harder than psychotherapy, ’n could I lighten it up a bit.  So I broke out A Woman in the Sunlightand off we went.
The Photo:
Will Spencer: he co-owned Solid Sound the little gem of a studio in Ann Arbor, Michigan where I recorded anything & everything that matters to me.  Will is simply a engineering/producer savant who has guided my music for all these years.  He’s understated, brilliant…and essential.
A Younger Me:
Jimmy Hines:  Jimmy was & is such a tasteful drummer/percussionist.  If you listen closely, his musical percussive choices always…always…serve the song.  But inside of his elegant restraint on A Woman in the Sunlight is a joyful, playful musicality that binds the whole song together.  He’s played with all sorts of the famous, including Brian Wilson, Styx, Ritchie Havens…et al…but here he is.
Bob Lizik:  Bob and I met when I was in Chicago.  Everyone down  there knew of his bass playing…but in addition, he is a baseball fan, which unites us.  But I digress.  He is the most lyrical bass player who
waits for his moment to give it some shine…then he goes back to glueing the track together.  On this song, just put on some headphones and just listen to Mr. Lizik’s playfulness meet the enormous groove he lays down.  He too has played with the stars (currently a touring member of Brian Wilson’s band)…but is grounded by his love of the Chicago White Sox.
Kraig McCreary:  Where to begin?  A session guitarist in Chicago.  The session guitarist in Chicago when I lived in that town.  He too has played with everyone, but famous (or not) he’s a “shake head in wonder” guitarist.  On this song, he starts of with this islandish wah wah electric guitar that gets you bobbing your head and then picks his spots.  On an overdub, he grabbed my nylon string and went to work to give it that light breezy feel.  What makes his playing so right is that when he showed up to this session, he knew the lyrics cold, so his playing reflected that…
Brian Brill: Brian didn’t make the photo op, which suits his ghost like visage.  But he’s played on everything I’ve recorded that needed a tasteful keyboardist.  I also have scored many PBS documentary films with Bri.  On this track, he picked up immediately the feel of the song, and starts it out with that percussive kalimba feel.  He, like the rest of the guys, just picks his spots and plays just what is necessary to bring the sunshine to the track.
Sherry Fox & Donna Davis:  (also not in photo) Both of them showed up weeks later and sang backgrounds on the song.  Lovely lovely women who have sung together for many stars (Aretha Franklin) & luminaries, but lent their talents to A Woman in the Sunlight…