November 18, 2006

All Roads Lead to Dead Dog Express (repost)

Another combined repost from my "Tales From Dead Dog Express" page. First published on August 8, 2004.

All Roads Lead To Dead Dog Express
Our journey to DDE began while fellow band member, Todd Katke, the drummer, and I were working at a local resturant/night club in 1976. We worked in the kitchen as dishwashers. We met a waitress whose brother was an active recording/performing musician in the area named Bob Goodsite. She told us that Bob had a small recording studio in the basement of their house and occassionally rented it out for demo work. Bob had recorded several songs, some of which found their way onto an album sponsored by a local radio station that highlighted local talent in the Detroit area called "W4 - Home Grown". (FYI: W4 or WWWW were the call letters of the radio station. This was the station that Howard Stern worked at early in his career before he became syndicated.)

We had been working on several of our own songs and decided to contact Bob about using his studio to record a short demo. We continued our rehearsals to sharpen and refine our material. After spending about 3 months in the rehearsal/writing phase, we set our session dates. We entered the studio in January 1977 to record 4 songs for our first demo.

The songs titles were:

Cruisin' Down The Road
I Need Your Love
Stand Up

At the time of this session, we were minus 1 bass guitarist so I performed all bass parts as overdubs. Todd was to sing lead on 1 song (Cruisin' Down The Road) and I would sing lead on 2 songs (I Need Your Love, Stand Up). We had a small entourage in attendance while all the initial band tracks were cut. These were guys that had become our stage crew and helped us drink beer whenever it was available. We had a lot of fun during the 1st session. Plenty of clowning around. I had such an adrenalin rush from the excitement of our first recording session and hearing our songs taking shape. We even had some of the guys in the sound room while we recorded Stand Up and you can hear them yelling during the drum solo section of the song. (yeah, I know, cheesy.)

Here are a couple of photos from the first day of recording..
Todd KatkeDay One: This is a picture of Todd Katke during microphone level check. The studio owner left all his equipment set up in the room so we had to wedge our equipment anywhere we could find the space. Todd played such a large drum kit, finding room was challenging to say the least. I think the cramped quarters actually added to the enthusiasm we were experiencing that day.

Dave StoneDay One: Here I am getting ready to start recording band tracks. It was a cold day outside and we just had a big snow the night before as you can see out the window behind me. I was 17 years old at the time.



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