It’s not what you stare at – it’s more what you see
Knee deep in the different – our knees shake in the streams
I’m considered rich with my wants being cheap
Pockets full of stubborn – is all that you keep
I appreciate everybody’s patience during this learning experience for me. I never realized the timeline/length of the vinyl process. I am happy to say the record should be delivered to me by the end of September. Which means it will be in your hands a week or two later. Mid October would be a conservative delivery date for all the Kickstarter contributors.
Matt Edwards, at United Record Pressing, Nashville TN has been my contact person. Really nice guy who has been updating me whenever any news drops.
There also will be download card in every record pressed. The download will be through Bandcamp.
“Rob Eldridge, known for his band Steelesque, departs a bit from his classic-rock roots to present Rooms Full of Gardens. One might guess that in preparation for this solo effort, Eldridge has been listening to more Wilco and The Kinks than The Rolling Stones. The vocals are soft, the lyrics introspective and poetic, and while the percussion is primarily of the machine variety, it adds an edgy element rather than cheapening the experience. Definitely worth a spin or two. “
— Seth Pfannenschmidt – Pittsburgh City Paper
Rob Eldridge a Burlington, Vermont Singer/Songwriter now based in Pittsburgh PA has a name around the block having supporting the following National Acts: The Jayhawks, Big Country, Government Mule, Warren Haynes, members of Phish, Blue Rodeo, Edgar Winter, Aimee Mann, Tea Leaf Green, Tumbleweed Wanderers, Big Wreck, Uncle Green, Raging Slab, Animal Bag, God Street Wine, Moonboot Lover.
After garnering accolades with his rock and roll outfit Steelesque. He decided to hole up with Producer Steven Foxbury in Yellow Couch Studio and write a batch of tunes that drew the attention of Grammy Award Winning – Mastering Engineer Rueben Cohen- Lurssen Mastering, Hollywood CA. Cohen added his dustings to the EP and Rooms Full Of Gardens was conceived. The EP can best be described as flowing 6 song acoustic atmospheric tornado that swirls with vocal harmonies reminiscent of late Beck records and the acoustic songwriting charm of a Josh Rouse offering. Eldridge plays a 1965 pawn shop piece Stella in the open E tuning throughout. With no songs barely going past 3 minutes all the little nuggets abound like low lying fruit for starving music aficionados.
The process of transforming studio recorded songs to the live setting is very expressive. Part of you wants to replicate the songs in rehearsal and on stage, and the other part of you wants to let the song take form and breathe. I think the key is that the listener should identify with both versions of the song: live and recorded. The Room Full Of Gardens EP was written in my studio track by track. The stems were taken to Yellow Couch Studio and completed. So these songs actually have never been played by a band or group of players. Interesting how different the recipe can be when writing songs. Occasionally, songs are crafted in a live rehearsal environment and sometimes they take shape over the course of years. The most important aspect is completion. Ideas To Art is the concept of taking an idea and making it art. I try not to leave ideas hanging around. I want to go through the A to Z process and finish a song so people can hear it and evoke emotion. Sometimes photographers take hundreds of photos to get that special one.
I’ve been using my iPhone to video record ideas and it’s been a very valuable tool. I use reference comments on the video (guitar in tuned to open E, capo placed …etc) this way I can go back and see finger placement. This is easier than going back to an audio recording and re-learning the progression.
Last night I had great session with some great players from Pittsburgh. I am very excited about the prospects of this group. The intangibles are in place and versatility won’t be a problem. Below are a couple shots of Bruce on keys. He had his first rehearsal with us last night. It was great!
I’ve finalized a concept for the new EP. EP title will be “Rooms Full Of Gardens”. Below is a slideshow that showcases possible EP cover art. The EP will also be available on vinyl. The cutting master has been sent out to one of the industries best cut masters, Ron McMaster at Capitol Studios, CA.
Any feedback on the artwork is appreciated.
Track 1 from Rob Eldridge’s Upcoming EP “Rooms Full Of Gardens”. Track title: Reign Of Rain
Live performance of Cuts and Scars in Sonic Planet Studios
So I just realized how much planning and brainstorming is required in properly releasing a creative project. In this case an EP. The only thing I’m firm on right now is track order, title and mastering company. Now the real work ensues with following topics circulating in my head like a paperback book in a tornado: Kickstarter, vinyl, iTunes, Amazon, Spotify, Shazaam, duplication, distribution, live performance, promotion, investors, social media, review outlets and bloggers.
These sort of things don’t lend themselves to kindly to the creative process. I mean how can I start writing again and ignore exposing these little gems I’ve recorded? Songs not exposed or revealed to listeners remain unborn and never grow. So my plan is to get behind these songs and give them wings. Till next time…..send me an email..firstname.lastname@example.org love to hear from all artists and people.
Through the past few months I’ve clutched a unique instrument that has reciprocated the devotion generated through our relationship. The instrument was a Craigslist find. Stella was a brand of guitars owned by the Oscar Schmidt Company and was founded around 1899. Notable users include Kurt Cobain (used one on the tune Polly), Ben Gibbard- Death Cab For Cutie and Lead Belly. Stella was acquired by the Harmony Company in 1939. The brand was dissolved in 1974, and has since been reintroduced by M.B.T. International, who are now the Harmony Company’s corporate parent.
I purchased a 1965 Stella for $60 bucks. This guitar has a unique sound and through my research I learned that it’s often used as an old blues box. I tuned mine in the open E tuning started to discover some amazing sounds when played with a finger-picking style. I also added some slide techniques and immediately started to write a batch of songs. The songs came quickly and the guitar sounded phenomenal mic’d up with a fairly low budget Rode NT1a.
I pulled out some old and new lyrics that I had lying around and started to arrange an acoustic based group of tunes. I’ve always written songs in batches so to speak. These collection of songs could best be described as very subtle and soft. The arrangements were complex in nature but simple sounding. I wanted to limit the tracks. I set a goal to not go beyond 8-10 tracks and let the songs breathe. All songs were tracked in my home studio. (Logic X – the drummer feature is amazing by the way). When completing each song I started to create simple melodies to weave throughout. I mostly compose melodies by humming or playing electric piano. In the end I had 4 songs sitting at 80% completion mainly due to the fact that I made the personal promise to myself not to over edit by stacking tons of instrumentation/midi.
During this time I was communicating with Steven Foxbury at Yellow Couch Studios. I knew in my heart that Steven was going to be part of this project. Steven is a very talented musician, arranger, singer and mostly listener. For me songs have to elicit emotions. A simple vocal change or instrument choice can change the mood of a song. He is very aware of this and understands where I was heading or where I went to get there. I remember singing these songs and recall the feelings I had so I was adamant about maintaining the feel. I trusted Steven and when we holed up in Yellow Couch Studio it all started to unfold. There were magical moments that made us laugh, smile and understand. The vocal arrangements took shape and became the fingerprint of the project. So when you eventually get the chance to truly listen these songs the lyrics should hopefully place your ear in an uncommon space.
Usually when I dive into the recording process I don’t write new songs. That hasn’t been the case recently. I wrote and recorded 3 songs while mixing the other 4. Two of these songs ended up on this EP.
I am really excited about the completion of this project called “Reverse The Sun”. The songlist currently stands at:
Reverse The Sun, Man With Three Names, Reign Of Rain, Life’s Commercials, Feed The Wolf and White Off Rice. I am really proud of the lyrical content on this EP. I really believe that the dichotomy between the music and words gives the EP a quiet strength.
The EP will be mastered by Rueben Cohen, at Lurrsen Mastering in Hollywood CA. He has mastered albums, singles and/or compilations for artists such as Edward Sharpe And The Magnetic Zeros, Incubus, Bruno Mars, Far East Movement, Skylar Grey, Snoop Dogg, Tyrese, Skylar Grey, Little Feat, Dev, Rob Zombie, Ingrid Michaelson, Marc Cohn, and Scott Weiland. Soundtracks include, Slumdog Millionaire, Pitch Perfect, Despicable Me 2, Disney’s Tangled and Cars 2, Across The Universe, Identity Thief, and Bridesmaids. I am very thankful to my friend Jimmy Hoyson for making this contact a reality. Jimmy is a very talented Producer/Engineer and is in high demand and has worked with artists such as Michael Jackson, Ben Harper, Sheryl Crow, James Taylor, Lou Reed, Goo Goo Dolls and many more!
For the past 2 months i’ve penned about 5 songs in the open “E” tuning. I picked up a 1965 Stella acoustic guitar and converted it to my banging little blues box. This guitar, for the price, sounds amazing when mic’d up. It has a deadening warmth that’s usually hard to replicate. It has different color than my 79 Martin.
Well one of the songs, “Cuts and Scars” was snagged by Steelesque (my Rock and Roll band) and the other four will make up my new EP. The titles currently stand as White Off Rice, Reverse The Sun, Reign of Rain and Feed The Wolf.
When I finished tracking my ideas in my studio I realized something really organic was rearing it’s head. A most certain departure to the songs Steelesque performs. The idea of creating space and avoiding sonic conflict was a focal point. The melodies found their way throughout and vocal takes came easy. I will say the chorus in “Feed The Wolf” is still pending and may need additional lyric content.
So I sat with these songs and knew I wanted to collaborate with my friend Steven Foxbury. Steven is the owner and producer at Yellow Couch Studios. We both use Logic X so the transferring of ideas and audio has been seamless. I would best describe the time as very productive and creative. Steven has keen sense when crafting songs. His soft subtle vocal and melody ideas have strengthened the fabric of the tracks. Needless to say we’ve been all smiles after each session. I can’t express the level skill Steven has in the songwriting process. He is a listener and understands that songs, to a certain degree, are fueled by emotions. The partnership we’ve established is special.
I’m really excited to share this project with my friends, family and strangers. Here is a quick sample of a tune called “Reverse The Sun”.