|By Ralph (18.104.22.168) on Friday, August 15, 2003 - 10:13 am:|
Ok gang. A brand new Ray thread to fill. Ray, you are popular here and once again accept our deepest gratitude for taking the time to talk with us.
|By RAY MONETTE (22.214.171.124) on Saturday, August 16, 2003 - 02:07 pm:|
HELLO TO ALL:
POWERLESS!! THAT WAS THE HEADLINE OF THE DETROIT NEWS TODAY.BIGGEST OUTAGE IN THE HISTORY OF THE U.S. MINE CAME BACK ON LATE LAST NIGHT.NO COMPLAINTS,COULD HAVE BEEN TRAPPED IN AN ELEVATOR,OR AT THE TOP OF AN AMUSEMENT PARK RIDE,LIKE SOME FOLKS.IT'S AMAZING HOW WE TAKE OUR MODERN CONVIENENCES FOR GRANTED,UNTIL THEY DISAPPEAR.MY WIFE AND I SPENT THE EVENING ON THE PATIO WITH A FIRE GOING,AND MARVELED AT THE TOTAL QUIET,AND AMAZING AMOUNT OF STARS WE COULD SEE WITHOUT THE CITY LIGHTS.
CALEB,I COULDN'T AGREE WITH YOU MORE ABOUT MIKE,BUT NOTHING IS WRITTEN IN STONE,AND SITUATIONS CAN CHANGE.
MEL,I VOTE FOR PUTTING FANTABULOUS IN THE DICTIONARY!ISN'T IT WONDERFUL HOW WE RELATE SONGS TO FOND MEMORIES.IT MAKES THEM ALL THE SWEETER. MY SEARCH FOR BOB WILSON IS TWO-FOLD.I'AM SURE HE COULD CONTRIBUTE TO THIS FORUM,AND I HAVE BEEN GETTING TOGETHER WITH MY OLD MATES FROM MY FIRST BAND.WE NEED A KEYBOARD PLAYER,AND I THINK BOB WOULD BE PERFECT.WHEN I SAW HIM AT THE MOTOR CITY CASINO,HE SAID HE'D LIKE TO JAM SOME TIME.I'VE NARROWED THE SEARCH TO D.T.E.THAT'S WHERE HE WORKS,AND AS SOON AS THINGS SETTLE DOWN A BIT,I SHOULD BE ABLE TO CONTACT HIM.D.T.E. IS OUR ELECTRIC PROVIDER,BY THE WAY. THANK YOU MEL,FOR THE KIND WORDS.
IAN,THERE WERE AN AMAZING AMOUNT OF TALENTED PEOPLE IN DETROIT,IN THOSE DAYS.IT'S QUITE INCREDIBLE WHEN YOU THINK ABOUT IT.I LOVED ALL THE "SAN REMO" TRACKS.THAT MUSIC WAS SUCH A COOL DEPARTURE FROM THE NORM.IT ALSO GAVE OUR SYMPHONY PLAYERS A CHANCE TO SHINE.
I DON'T KNOW THE OTHER PLAYERS ON THE SONG,BUT I'AM SURE BOB WOULD.HOPEFULLY,WE'LL BE HEARING FROM HIM SOON.
RALPH,THANKS FOR THE CLOSING...AND THE OPENING.YOUR KIND WORDS ARE MUCH APPRECIATED,OLD FRIEND.
|By Kim Kostere (126.96.36.199) on Sunday, August 17, 2003 - 11:29 am:|
Did you use the SG on Scorpion and what if any type of acoustic guitar was used? Finally, what kind of wah wah did you use? The sound and playing is wonderful!
|By Ian W (188.8.131.52) on Monday, August 18, 2003 - 07:25 am:|
Ray, you said it! Perhaps anyone moving to Detroit in the 60s had to be musically vetted first? I wish I'd been there - but you've actually been part of it! We are not worthy.....
|By RAY MONETTE (184.108.40.206) on Monday, August 18, 2003 - 01:42 pm:|
HELLO TO ALL:
KIM, THANKS VERY MUCH KIM.ALL OF THE ELECTRIC GUITAR ON THE ALBUM IS THE GIBSON SG.THERE ARE TWO ACOUSTICS ON VARIOUS SONGS.BOTH ARE GUILD GUITARS.ONE IS A BLONDE,JUMBO SIX- STRING,AND THE OTHER IS A TWELVE-STRING.I STILL HAVE THE SG,AND THE SIX STRING.I'AM NOT SURE WHEN THE WAH-WAH PEDAL CAME OUT,BUT IT WAS RIGHT AROUND THAT TIME(MID 60'S).THE ONE I USED WAS A VOX,WITH THE CHROME V.O.X. ON TOP.THEY HAVE RECENTLY RE-ISSUED THAT CLASSIC PEDAL,BUILT TO THE OLD SPECS.I JUST BOUGHT ONE,AND LIKE IT ALOT.
IAN, IT WAS A MELTING POT OF TALENT FROM ALL OVER THE U.S.,AND SOME HOME-GROWN THROWN IN FOR GOOD MEASURE.I WAS VISITING HITSVILLE IN 1961 WITH MY FIRST BAND-MATES.WE WERE TRYING TO HOOK UP A RECORD DEAL.THINKING BACK ON IT NOW,IT WAS AMAZING HOW OPEN EVERYTHING WAS THEN.WE WALKED IN OFF THE STREET,MET VARIOUS PEOPLE,AND CHECKED OUT THE STUDIO.IT WAS NOTHING TO SEE MARVIN GAYE,OR STEVIE WONDER,OR ANY OF THE OTHER ARTISTS HANGING OUT OR WORKING ON PROJECTS.IT WASN'T UNTIL SEVERAL YEARS LATER THAT THEY HAD A RECEPTIONIST AT THE FRONT THAT WOULD ASK YOU YOUR BUSINESS,AND WOULD BUZZ THE DOOR TO LET YOU IN.
OVER THE YEARS,I WOULD MAKE MANY MORE VISITS TO THAT PLACE.MIKE CAMPBELL AND I WERE SIGNED AS ARTISTS,EARLY ON.THEN CAME MY STUDIO WORK AS A MUSICIAN.AND THEN,SIGNING AGAIN,WITH RARE EARTH.ALL IN ALL, SOME VERY EXCITING AND MEMORABLE TIMES.
ONE LAST THOUGHT:RARE EARTH WAS RECORDING AT STUDIO B.WE WERE DONE FOR THE NIGHT,AND MARVIN GAYE, AND HIS ENTOURAGE WERE COMING IN NEXT.I HAPPENED TO MEET THEM ON THEIR WAY IN,AND INNOCENTLY SAID A PHRASE THAT WAS COMMONLY USED AT THAT TIME.I SAID,"WHAT'S GOING ON".AT THAT POINT,THEY LOOKED AT EACH OTHER AND BURST OUT LAUGHING.I DIDN'T GET THE JOKE UNTIL LATER WHEN THE RECORD CAME OUT.
|By Rich (220.127.116.11) on Tuesday, August 19, 2003 - 09:43 am:|
Ray, thread #3 - let's get after it
Holland-Dozier-Holland - when you were playing sessions for HDH, was it intimidating that these were the guys who'd done all of those hits with The 4Tops & Supremes?
What was your overall impression as to each of their involvement in both the creative process as well as the recording process?
|By RAY MONETTE (18.104.22.168) on Tuesday, August 19, 2003 - 06:16 pm:|
HELLO TO ALL:
RICH,AS USUAL VERY GOOD QUSTIONS.I HAD BEEN TO BRIAN HOLLANDS HOUSE,YEARS BEFORE,WITH JACK ASHFORD.AT THAT TIME,I ALSO MET EDDIE AND LAMONT.THEY WERE VERY PLEASANT AND WARM PEOPLE,AND MADE ME FEEL TOTALLY AT EASE.OF COURSE I HAD GREAT ADMIRATION AND RESPECT FOR THESE GENTLEMAN.I WAS AN ASPIRING WRITER MYSELF.
I HAD ALSO OPENED UP FOR EDDIE WHEN HE HAD "JAMIE" OUT.AT THAT TIME,HE CAME OFF AS VERY TALENTED BUT HUMBLE.THESE GUYS ARE UP THERE WITH THE GREATEST WRITERS OF ALL TIME.
WHEN IT CAME TO THE STUDIO WORK FOR THEM,IT WAS BASICALLY JUST ANOTHER SESSION,EXCEPT THAT THE SONGS WERE USUALLY OUTSTANDING.THEY ALSO BROUGHT IN NEW ARRANGERS,LIKE H.B.BARNUM,THAT WROTE CHARTS FOR US LIKE WE HAD NEVER SEEN BEFORE.MOST EVERYTHING WRITTEN OUT AND QUITE DIFFICULT.I KNOW I WAS TOO BUSY GETTING THE CHARTS STRAIGHT TO THINK ABOUT WHO THEY WERE FOR.
ON THE CREATIVE SIDE,I THINK THEY WERE EQUALS IN EVERY RESPECT.WE SAW MORE OF LAMONT AND BRIAN OUT IN THE STUDIO HELPING TO GET THINGS TOGETHER,AND KEEP IT MOVING.EDDIE WAS IN THE CONTROL ROOM MOST OF THE TIME,OR OFF TAKING CARE OF BUSINESS.I GOT THE DISTINCT IMPRESSION THAT HE HANDLED ALOT OF THE BUSINESS SIDE.LAMONT AND BRIAN STAYED AT THE BOARD AND MADE SURE THAT THE SONGS CAME OUT THE WAY THEY WERE SUPPOSED TO.WHEN THEY CAME OUT INTO THE STUDIO YOU KNEW SOME CHANGES WERE GOING TO BE MADE.LAMONT WAS THE MORE HUMOROUS ONE.HE HAD A GREAT SMILE AND HE WOULD LIGHTEN THINGS UP FOR EVERYONE.I BELIEVE HE WAS ALSO THE ONE THAT GOT MOST OF THE BACKROUND VOCALS TOGETHER.THE ARRANGERS HANDLED MUCH OF THE LOAD,UNLESS SOMETHING NEEDED TO BE CHANGED.ALL IN ALL,THERE WAS RESPECT FOR THESE AMAZING MEN.THEY MADE YOU WANT TO GIVE EVERYTHING YOU COULD TO YOUR PERFORMANCE.
|By Rich (22.214.171.124) on Wednesday, August 20, 2003 - 08:54 am:|
Great answer Ray, thanks so much for taking the time. You've worked with the best of the best!!
Was there ever a session you played on with HDH/Invictus, which at the time you thought was a sure-fire smash that never became much of a hit ... or the opposite, a session you played on which you thought there is no way this will ever get much play on the radio, but became a hit none-the-less?
|By RAY MONETTE (126.96.36.199) on Wednesday, August 20, 2003 - 05:48 pm:|
HELLO TO ALL:
RICH, I THINK ALL OF US WERE SURE THAT "DEAF,BLIND,AND PARALYZED",WOULD'NT BE A HIT.OTHER THAN THAT,YOU HAVE TO REMEMBER THAT ALL WE WERE HEARING WAS THE RYTHM TRACK.NO LEAD OR BACKROUND VOCALS,AND NO STRINGS OR HORNS.SOMETIMES,THERE WASN'T EVEN A TITLE ON THE CHART.CERTAINLY,WE COULD GET A VIBE ON HOW STRONG WHAT WE WERE RECORDING WAS,BUT PREDICTING A HIT OR MISS WOULD HAVE BEEN TOUGH.I DO REMEMBER THINKING THAT "BAND OF GOLD",WHICH I THINK WAS THE FIRST TRACK AT TOWER,SOUNDED LIKE A NATURAL HIT,JUST WITH THE RYTHM TRACK.IT HAD A GREAT FEEL,AND WE WERE ALL ENJOYING PLAYING IT.
A HIT RECORD IS A VERY ELUSIVE AND COMPLEX THING,BUT I'VE GOTTA BELIEVE THAT WHEN THE PLAYERS ARE REALLY ENJOYING WHAT THEY ARE DOING,THAT IT IS TRANSMITTED TO THE LISTENER.THIS IS AT LEAST ONE PART OF A HIT RECORD,WHICH LAYS THE FOUNDATION FOR THE PRODUCER TO BUILD ON.THOSE POSITIVE VIBES HAVE TO INSPIRE ALL THOSE THAT FOLLOW, TO GIVE A SIMILAR PERFORMANCE,CREATING A "MAGIC" SNOWBALL EFFECT. THIS IS THE BEST THAT A RECORDING MUSICIAN CAN GIVE TO A PROJECT.IN THE END,THE REST IS UP TO THE LISTENER.
|By Flytoo (188.8.131.52) on Monday, August 25, 2003 - 09:07 pm:|
My wife and I are planning a trip to Detroit in a few weeks. We've never been there before so we're excited! I'm a student of electric bass so we plan to do as much "bass" stuff in Detroit as possible. I am especially interested in anything Jamerson and Babbitt. Of course we plan to visit Hitsville. I understand that most of all the old clubs are closed where these guys used to play? What other Jamerson and Babbitt things are there to do and other than music are there any other "must see" attractions while we're there? Thanks for taking the time to answer our questions. All the best! Flytoo
|By RAY MONETTE (184.108.40.206) on Tuesday, August 26, 2003 - 12:53 pm:|
HELLO TO ALL:
FLYTOO,UNFORTUNATELY,MANY OF THE MUSICAL HISTORY SITES ARE GONE,BUT BESIDES HITSVILLE,YOU COULD TAKE A LOOK AT WHERE MANY SESSIONS TOOK PLACE.AS NOTED IN ANOTHER THREAD,UNITED SOUND IS UP AND RUNNING.ALSO BABBITT RECENTLY DID A SESSION AT PAC 3,WHICH WAS AROUND IN THE OLD DAYS.
THE TOP OF THE REN.CEN. GIVES A SPECTACULAR VIEW OF THE CITY.THE FOX THEATER IS WHERE THE MOTOWN REVUES TOOK PLACE.I THINK BABBITT MENTIONED GREENFIELD VILLAGE.ALSO,ASK ONE OF THE OTHER DETROITERS ON THIS FORUM.THEY PROBABLY HAVE SOME OTHER GOOD IDEAS.
ANYWAY,HAVE A GREAT TIME IN BIG D.
I'AM NOT POSITIVE ON THE YEAR,BUT WE DID A MINI,MOTOWN REVUE AT THE HOLIDAY STAR THEATER IN INDIANA.THE SHOW FEATURED "RARE EARTH","MARTHA REEVES","JR.WALKER",AND "DAVID RUFFIN WITH EDDIE KENDRICKS".WE SHARED A DRESSING ROOM WITH JR. WALKER,ONE OF MY ALL TIME FAVORITE SAX PLAYERS.WE HAD A BALL WITH THE GUYS.THEY WERE REALLY ALOT OF FUN.
THE SHOW WAS OUTSTANDING.GOOD PERFORMANCES BY ALL,AND THE AUDIENCE RESPONDED ACCORDINGLY.
LOOKING BACK ON IT NOW.IT HAD TO BE ONE OF THEIR LAST SHOWS.NO ONE REALIZED HOW LUCKY WE WERE TO SEE THESE LEGENDS ONE LAST TIME.
|By LTLFTC (220.127.116.11) on Tuesday, August 26, 2003 - 05:00 pm:|
Ray; would you rate the Rare Earth lps that you're on in order of your personal satisfaction with the finished product? Some comment about each would be appreciated too..
|By RAY MONETTE (18.104.22.168) on Thursday, August 28, 2003 - 02:44 pm:|
HELLO TO ALL:
STEVE,HERE'S THE LIST.
8."BACK TO EARTH"
ON ONE WORLD,EVERYTHING SEEMED FRESH AND NEW.WE WERE EXCITED ABOUT THE SONGS,AND WE PUT AS MUCH CREATIVITY AS POSSIBLE INTO THE ALBUM.IT WAS FUN.
MA WAS PROBABLY THE PEAK OF OUR WORK WITH NORMAN WHITFIELD.WE WERE IN THE TRENCHES TOGETHER,SWEATING AND STRAINING TO GET ALL THE GOOD LICKS IN.
IN CONCERT WAS THE CULMINATION OF WHAT RARE EARTH WAS ALL ABOUT.LIVE PERFORMANCE!!
WE HAD GREAT FUN DOING WILLIE.A TOTAL GROUP EFFORT,BUT PROBABLY LEANING TO FAR TOWARD THE ROCK SIDE,AWAY FROM OUR FUNK ROOTS.
BAND TOGETHER:SOME STRONG CUTS,AND A BEE GEE'S SOUND A LIKE,SEMI HIT.BUT THE ALBUM WAS WEAK ON PRODUCTION.
DIFFERENT WORLD:SOME NEW MEMBERS,BUT A TOTALLY UNIQUE EXPERIENCE.WE LIVED AT THE STUDIO,IN GERMANY,DURING THE ENTIRE RECORDING.LIVING,EATING,AND BREATHING MUSIC,WITH NO DISTRACTIONS.A GOOD CREATIVE EFFORT.
GRAND SLAM:SOME GOOD PLAYING,BUT TOO MANY COVER SONGS.ONCE AGAIN, THE PRODUCTION WAS LACKING.
BACK TO EARTH:GOOD PERFORMANCES,AND SONGS,BUT DIDN'T SOUND LIKE THE R.E. THAT THE FANS KNEW.
MIDNIGHT LADY:A HALF HEARTED EFFORT BY NORMAN,WITH SONGS THAT REALLY DIDN'T STAND OUT.ALSO,KNOWING THAT MOTOWN WAS NOT BEHIND THE GROUP AT THIS POINT.
ALL IN ALL,IT WAS QUITE AN ADVENTURE,AND I CERTAINLY HAD A GOOD TIME BEING INVOLVED WITH EVERYBODY.A LOT OF GOOD MEMORIES!!
|By LTLFTC (22.214.171.124) on Friday, August 29, 2003 - 09:13 pm:|
Ray- thanks for the list and comments. I probably listen to "Ma" the most. I also think "Willie Remembers" is really underrated.
By the way, did you ever notice how much Mike Campbell resembles Lee Michaels vocally ? Also maybe a funkier Tommy James...
|By Caleb (126.96.36.199) on Friday, August 29, 2003 - 10:44 pm:|
Mike Campbell's happening!!Gotta get him back into it.Peace