Tuesday, November 12, 2013

EVERYBODY’S RECOVERING FROM SOMETHING_Soundtrax 2 Recovery_The CD From John Batdorf and Michael McLean

It’s just the truth. When we were younger we thought recovery was something “those people” needed to do… certainly not us. In fact, more often than not, a part of us took a certain amount of pride in the fact that whatever we were going through we weren’t as bad as “them”. Then we grew up, lived a few decades and discovered we’re all in the same boat. We’re all facing some sort of affliction or addiction that has shaken our world, or the world of someone we love, and the only way “our is “through”. This album is for those of us on the road to recovery.
In the spirit of full disclosure, we’re songwriters who’ve been around a while and grew up believing in the power of music to change lives. It isn’t arrogance that wrote these songs, our egos aren’t that big. We’re not pretending this collection of tunes will be all anyone needs to recover from whatever has broken in their lives and needs repair. We’ve learned that often the songs that “trigger” substance abuse (or any other addictive behavior) are easy to identify, though not always that easy to set aside. Unfortunately, upon re-entering. the world outside the clinic there isn’t a readily available “soundtrack to recovery” to help trigger the hope, the courage, the endurance or the faith to make it through the next few moments, hours, days or years. Everything we’ve written and recorded here has been done with the hope that this album might be part of your soundtrack to recovery. 

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Soundtrax 2 Recovery
John Batdorf & Michael McLean

If the album SOUNDTRAX 2 RECOVERY does what we hope it can do and reaches beyond musical entertainment and dares to lay claim to beinginspirationalsomething may happen to you that has happened to us. As we've listened back to these recordings we've been working on for all these years, various names pop into our heads; the names of friends and family that might be ready to hear these songs. If that happens to you, we'd like to make it easier for you to get a few extra copies of the CD to pass along when you feel the moment is right. Let us know how many copies you think you'd like to share and we'll send them to you regardless of the size of donation you can afford to make. We'd like to become your partners in reaching out to those on the journey to recovery. This is our way of joining with you to "musically pay it forward" and maybe, just maybe, enriching someone's life for good.

John Batdorf & Michael McLean


                                      The Making Of All Wood And Stones II

In 2004, James Lee Stanley and myself got together and recorded our first CD together, All Wood And Stones. The CD was released in the fall of that year and much to our surprise, became an instant radio hit for us.

This was going to be a one time thing and James and I would go back to doing what we did before the project was begun. We never never going to be an act, let alone a touring act but one thing led to another and by popular demand, off on the road we went.

Flash forward 8 years and lo and behold after 8 years of touring this CD, we decided to give it another try. We just didn't know what music direction to take. We kicked around doing California Gold, Steely Dan, Stevie Wonder, even a tribute to the great Motown hits but nothing seemed seemed to be right.

I was sitting with James in his studio and I said, "Hey, what about doing the Stones again?" James said, "Wow, I just got chills, let's do it!"

We worked so hard to find 11 songs that worked acoustically on the first CD, that it would be impossible to find another half dozen more that would work but we were wrong. There was a difference this time.

When we did the first CD, we just got together and worked on arrangements and recorded them. After touring off and on for 8 years, something had changed. There was a different synergy when we worked out arrangements for the new songs.

We weren't afraid to be more aggressive and even used drums on this CD where the first CD only had percussion and light at that. We chose raunchier songs like Honky Tonk Women, Jumpin' Jack Flash and they worked great.

The funny thing is, we tried those songs for the first CD but I just don't think we were ready for the challenge, but after eight years of playing together, these songs came easy. The CD is a natural progression from the first more laid back All Wood and Stones.

Unlike the first CD, where we made the decision to use several celebrity artists including Timothy B. Schmidt and Peter Tork to name a few, we only used a drummer Tom Walsh and two bass players, Bill Batstone and Chad Watson.

We were very confident in being able to accomplish what we wanted with just the two of us and the rhythm section mentioned above. We also recorded the CD differently. The first CD was recorded mostly at James' studio.

This time, once we had the arrangements, we recorded our individual basic guitar parts and lead vocals at our own studios to save time. Once we had the guitars and lead vocals done, we decided to record and mix everything else at my studio. I bought a great new Pearlman Microphone for this project and once James and I worked out the harmonies we decided to try something new.

We opened the mic up and sang our individual parts at the same time which really forces you sing your part great. Unlike recording your parts which can be doctored to work, this technique brought a whole new energy to the background vocals which was really great.

Both James and I really stretched our talents to new heights. I believe we sang and played better than we have ever done before. So in a nutshell, in our opinion, this is the best album either one of us has ever done and we think you will too!

John Batdorf & James Lee Stanley