Rumours Of Love (And Other Indoor Games)
I think I know what Stevie Nicks must’ve felt like making ‘Rumours’ with Fleetwood Mac.
No, no, no: not the scarves or the mounds of blow or the deviated septum or the fact that I’m schtuping the guitar player. No, it’s that the music is brand new. We’re making it up from nothing right there in the studio. We’re figuring it out as we go along.
‘Rumours,’ is one of the biggest-selling albums of all time. It was on the charts well over a year. (So… we have that in common.) More importantly, or more salient to this post, is that the band — like many bands back in the day — wrote, arranged, and recorded the songs in the studio. They didn’t bring a bunch of finished products in to record and polish. They spent millions of dollars working out the details on the clock.
It’s weird. I’m singing from lyrics sheets. Which is to say, I don’t know these songs by heart. I know them, but I don’t know them. I don’t know what they;re going to grow up to become, yunno’? Rockers, ballads, country-flavored, hip-hoppy. I dunno’. I’d lived with ‘Crash Site’ for over a year. I’d lived with the ‘Almost Home’ demos for nine months. These songs? Brand new. Kev and I blew through half the final vocals (what do you think of the album title ‘How To Be Alone’?). Most of the keeper takes were the second. I mean, on a certain level, I have no idea how these songs are supposed to sound. And yet I keep saying, “That’s cool. Let’s move on.” Wiggedy wack.
Yunno’ what else is wack? This record is kinda’ sexy. Yeah, sexy. There are a few lyrics that just might make me blush in front of my parents. I’m not Prince all of a sudden, but it might just get a little Terrence Trent D’Arby on your ass for a minute…
It’s all a little nerve wracking. I mean, I know it sounds good in my headphones, but I have no idea how it’ll sound to you. In the past, I’ve spent days recording one dink ass line of a song. So to spend, like, ten minutes on the whole thing, well, it takes some getting used to. Don’t get me wrong: I asked for it. I’m pushing Kevin, he’s not pushing me. I’m the one who wants to release it by Thanksgiving. I’m the one who wants it to sound “alive.” But it’s tricky. There’s this voice in my head that says, ‘This is for all time!’ And another that says, ‘Dude, don’t sweat it! It’s only one performance!’ Don’t worry, I won’t release a piece of shit. If it blows, I’ll spare us all. But wow, this is fast!
Yeah, this is fast. This is all fast. Life is fast, and getting faster. No time to f*** around, yunno’? That’s why I wanna’ hang with Ethan and Chris and Jen and my family as much as possible. This is why I wanna’ see the world, and toast my friends, and play lotsa’ shows and make lots and lots of records. Whether they sell 15 million copies, or fifteen.
Wait a second. Makes me nervous? Check. Spontaneous? Check. Sexy? Check.
Must be doing something right.
So Fast, So Numb