Originally Posted by juniorhifikit
Hi Eric - I have a few Good Charlotte questions, and some of them relate to other topics as well, but I thought I'd ask them all in one place.
- Who wrote the Danny Elfman-esque arrangement on "A New Beginning"?
I wrote and arranged the sound track intro on the album. The idea came from hanging out with them in DC. I typically will make arrangements to spend a couple of days hangin out with the band members in their home turf before starting a record. It is an opportunity to get to know them, get to know their tastes, talk about music, talk about the record, listen to music etc. One thing that struck me was that one of the CDs that was in their CD changer when we were driving around was the sound track to Edward Scissor Hands. When it came on it surprised me and asked is this your usual driving around music? And they all went on and on about how much they love that sound track and love Danny Elfman and listen to his sound tracks all the time. I thought we should do something like this on the record. It is a totally sincere, organic influence for the band and should be represented. I came up with the opening part and then we collaborated on the portion when the band comes in. It was a lot of fun to do. I am also a huge Danny Elfman fan.
- Did they use your famous drum kit that you hadn't changed (which died at the hands of Dave Grohl)? It has a sound that I hear on several other records you produced (Persephone's Bees, Smashmouth), and I'm trying to ascertain if it's from the kit, or your techniques.
They did use my same collection of drums but the lovely 6 year Pearl Export snare drum died months before on the QOTSA album. I went directly from the QOTSA record to the Good Charlotte record. That is a head spinning stylistic change for sure. I went from being a drug rehab counselor to being a summer camp counselor over night
Good Charlotte mostly used the Sonor kit and the vintage 60's ludwig kit (Vintage 60s ludwig kit was used on the entire P's Bees record).
- Is that actually "Lust For Life" slipped under the drums in "Lifestyles" (if you can't or would rather not say for certain reasons, I understand).
The drum sound and groove on Lifestyles was very much inspired by Lust For Life. I set up a drum kit right at the opening to the reverb chamber. I used a 28" slingerland marching kick drum with the original very thin heads for the kick. the snare was the red vista light. I am pretty sure there were no toms setup. I think there are no toms on that song. It was a somewhat minimal micing where I tried to use mostly close mics but have the sound of the chamber bleed into the close mics. That was the best I could come up with from listening to the Lust for Life recording. I will also say that in the final mix the drums on Lifestyles were directly "influenced" by the Lust For Life drums
- Is your "compression/expansion at the time time" technique something that you do often, or just occasionally?
I pretty much never set a gate so it completely shuts off in between openings. I always leave as much natural ambience as I can in each mic. It makes it way easier for me to get the drum kit to sound more cohesive. I just use the gates only as much as I need to to get the hihat and cymbal bleed under control. With minimalistic micing like on the P's Bees record it is essential. That record is a really good example of the expander/compressor trick.