By Paul Long
On this blog I like to write about what I’ve been up to recently. And my head and heart has been immersed in trying to bring to life what turned out to be (so far) the final recording sessions of my band The Riotous Brothers.
Having played some of our best gigs ever, The Riotous Brothers were looking forward to an exciting New Year when in January 2017 our guitarist and singer Mash was felled by a severe stroke. It wasn’t certain he would survive, and then for a while it seemed touch and go as to whether he would regain his mobility and speech. Plans for a fourth album - part-recorded, to which Mash and I had begun adding overdubs - were put on hold.
(Mash Sonnet - Photo by Rob Blackham)
After a lot of discussion it was decided that the rest of us - Dirk Maggs, Mat Lake and I - would finish the album. This was, we believed, a fine selection of songs and we would complete it in his honour. I worked on it in-between Catfish tours and took time recently to finish the final mixing.
The songs existed as basic tracks with a few overdubs in the can. Mash had recorded guide vocals and some scratch guitar parts and one finished studio vocal performance, and so the various takes, demos and rehearsals were mined for useable recordings of Mash's parts. I spent long months
painstakingly cleaning up Mash’s guide vocals and Mat played some great guitar where planned parts had not been recorded, including solos.
Now, after more than eighteen months, Mash is very much his old cheeky self again, and although his playing and singing abilities are compromised for the foreseeable future, he has contributed hugely to finessing
STANDING AT THE EDGE OF THE WORLD, our fourth album.
We hope one day that The Riotous Brothers will return to live performance, but until then this new album,
STANDING AT THE EDGE OF THE WORLD, is dedicated to our dear friend and brother, Matt Sonnet - Mash.
The record is now released and I’m looking forward to hearing it on the radio and talking about it, but mainly it’s great to have the songs out there. It may turn out to be the last Riotous Brothers album - I hope it will merely be our fourth album.
Now to get back to finishing that Catfish record...