Skip to Content Skip to Navigation
Join the email list!

Chris Smith: Words & Music

Intro: About the recording

Chris Smith
The concept behind this disc was to capture the spontaneity of the music happening live, in real time, on a program of classic tunes from the tradition. Many of our favorite recordings in this music, by some of the greatest players of the past 100 years, were recorded in remarkably “off-the-cuff” fashion: a player or players in a studio for a few hours, playing live without overdubs, with the tapes rolling and the tunes arranged on the fly. Like jazz, this music thrives on moment-to-moment spontaneity and the spark of players reacting to each other and to the tunes; modern multi-tracking techniques can sometimes drain the life out of it. From the very inception of the project, the concept was to re-create those earlier discs’ vibe, while capturing the results in high audio quality, to combine the approach and feel of the old discs with the pristine recording standards of the new. I’m grateful to my virtuoso colleagues—Randal, Roger, Angie, and John—for making the process both fun and rewarding, and to Jeff Karsin for capturing it; thanks guys!