• The Making of Set on a Hill, Pt.3

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    Wow, really? You’re really that interested in all of this? Welcome back, thanks for following all of this. If you have any questions at all about any of the details, please just email me and I’ll be happy to oblige.

    The start of the second day was really, really difficult physically. I’m telling you this because I really think it’s important to the album. I’m rather a tight-lipped person when it comes to opening up and sharing, however there is so much relevance between where I was physically and the details of the recording, that I can’t just let it not be made mentioned.

    My body was shot before we even arrived at the studio the second day. We started with A Goldfish Named George which going in to this project was my favorite of all the songs. Although it didn’t turn out as I had wanted, I still love the song. I remember going through it a couple of times, barely keeping myself together. I took a break from recording it and just sat there, wife on the piano bench with me saying “I just can’t do this, not today. I’m just not able to.” Being the amazing woman that I married, she understood and allowed me to just process through it all. Eventually knowing that I would try again. As I did, and we continued with the rest of the album. She’s smart like that. In between songs and different takes, I would literally lay on the floor and rest under the piano while she, Will & Corin would listen to the play backs.

    After George, we went on to Will, the first track. And although it would be very fitting to name the song after Ackerman, this wasn’t the case, though I love the guy like a brother. The song brought back everything that I had wanted this album to be. I love this song, hence it being the opener of the album. I really wanted this song to set the tone of the album. After Will came Reflections. Probably the most…..un-improvised song on the album. So, that one went down pretty quick.

    The next song was rather the surprise, She Walks in Beauty (The Wedding Song). I married the woman of my dreams, in every manor. I had written all of the music for our wedding for violin and cello. This song performed for violin and cello and turned out to be so absolutely beautiful, I could not have been happier. My wife had no idea I had planned on recording this, so when Will & Corin asked what the next song was, I just asked them to start recording and I’ll tell them the title afterward. She cried. This is the piece that she walked down the aisle to at our wedding (however with strings, not piano). I have plans of recording the wedding music for violin & cello soon, so please stay posted if you’d like.

    Following that was the album’s title Set On A Hill. I love this song and was happy with how it turned out. This was the final song of the 2nd day of recording. At this point, I was really fried. After recording it, Will, my wife and I walked around the property for a while just taking in all of it’s beauty before having to leave. Such a beautiful place.

    We sadly departed after the hugs and smiles, promising for it not to be the last time, but only the beginning. The long drive back to Brooklyn (only made long by the last 30 minutes turning into an hour and a half because of traffic back into the city) made it all feel like it never really happened. That it had all been just a dream. But I’m finally beginning to see that the dream is becoming a reality.

    After being home for 2 days and struggling, I called my doctor around 6 am, and was then told to come to her office where I was then placed in the hospital for 3 & 1/2 weeks. I think my body was waiting for me to record this album. The album sounds the way that it does because it was a process of both struggle and of healing. I could not have gone in and recorded the songs straight down with the same response had I not been going through all that I had. I’m completely better now physically. Had a major surgery and the next morning felt like I could run a marathon. But I know, I know, I know that the album is THAT album by everything I was going through.

    I know these blogs about the album have been somewhat heavy, but I really wanted to share this with you. Give you an insight behind the album. It was an amazing experience. Now, with my health back 100%, I’m ever so curious as to what the next one will sound like.


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