Of all the amazing albums in your discography, the House of Freaks (HOF) album is my sentimental favorite. Brian Harvie was a fellow Richmond musician that I played around town with in our early years. Tragically, Brian and his beautiful family were taken from us in senseless act of random violence.
I would appreciate any recollections you have in recording, what at the time, was a new paradigm for a rock band i.e. a two-piece band with just a drummer and guitar.
I had a wonderful time recording Tantilla with House of Freaks. I was stunned to hear about Brian and only found out years later what had occured.
The record was for Rhino and after hearing the demoes and a phone conversation I found myself in Richmond and hung out at Main St Grill and the whole scene there was vibrant and real and for me, very American. We rehearsed for a bit and saw Famous Actors from Out of Town which was another band Johnny Hott played with; Marty had a studio space and played some hammond. We went to Sound Design studio in Santa Barbara which had Neve and Studer and was great room with partitions and walls that moved but was solid. We cut all tracks there and then moved to Indigo Ranch in Malibu which must be one of most memorable places on earth. Its closed now but opened by Moody Blues in 70s and was small ranchhouse high in hills above Malibu (Solstice Canyon) with the most amazing views to the ocean and desert all around. Be careful of rattlesnakes and mountain lion we were told. Space was tight as some of buildings had been burnt down in fire so I slept in drum booth in studio! Experienced my first earthquake there. Desk was a Dean Jensen Custom and rather like API. Tape machine was 3M and monitors JBL in long wooden room. Lots of Pultec and Altec.
I remember it was Thanksgiving and we decided to rent some camping gear and drove down to Borrego Springs and Joshua Tree and camped out the weekend. It rained a fine drizzle the whole time yet we managed to get fined $200 for lighting fire. A good time was had by all and we had to get back to Malibu and start work again.
The record was just the two of them and no bass and the songs were real good and ahead of its time really. The next record Cakewalk was excellent. I saw Johnny Hott when he was in UK with Sparklehorse but that was early 90s.
Thanks for the memory
Thank you very much for sharing your detailed memories of working with Brian and Johnny on the House of Freaks Tantilla Record. Main Street Grill is still here in Richmond and just like the day you last visited it. You camping story brought a real smile to my face. How many bands take a break and go camping during a recording session? You can take the boys out of the South but you can't take the South out of the boys...
Anyway thanks again for sharing your wonderful memories.