About TortoiseClimbing

Duets with Terry

My friend Terry played an important part in the evolution of what became TortoiseClimbing™. In 1990 he asked David to record duets with him at Bias Recording Studio.

How We Met

Terry and David met when David began singing with the small ensemble Sentimental Journey. Its focus was on multi-part harmony songs from the 1940's. Their name came from the song "Sentimental Journey," which was very popular from that period.

The group started as an impromptu gathering of folks who liked to sing. Their 1st "performace" was a get together to sing 1940's music for themselves from the rooftop of a Federal building overlooking the Washington, DC mall on a 4th of July. That evolved into the small singing group Sentimental Journey. (Terry and David joined after the group's initial July 4th "performance.")

Initial Recordings with Terry

In approximately 1990, while both of us were singing with Sentimental Journey, David was thinking about recording as a way to create something more lasting than performances. Turned out Terry had already begun recording at Bias Recording Studio and asked David to record some duets with him.

So in 1990, Terry and David began recording duets at Bias Recording Studio in Springfield, VA. With that rather fulfilling experience, we began honing our skills at making recordings. (Several streamable examples of duet and trio recordings from that time are included below.)

Terry worked mostly with the Bias partner, Mr. Bob Dawson, with whom we recorded the first duet, "I Am the Starlight." (The partners that created Bias were Bob Dawson and Bill McElroy.) Shortly after that 1st recording with Bob, much of his availability was preempted for extended recording sessions for Mary Chapin Carpenter albums. She had become very popular, and her then producer, John Jennings, was based at Bias.

(Mary Chapin would later switch to a Nashville, KY based producer, and move her record production there.)


This is the first time these private recordings are being made public.

The examples included were upgraded to conform with TortoiseClimbing™'s higher standard adopted with the recording Hymns and Songs of My Mother. To meet these more stringent quality standards for recordings:

We were able to accomplish this because:

Terry selected numbers for us to record from his wide interest in different musical styles. Included below are three different example styles of music:

Develop an explanation/discussion of the important role recording these duets played in our respective lives.

[Do we need to revise discussions about songs selected, why?]

{The HTML Audio Player for each song specifies which are still pending being activated for streaming. These examples use MP3 format at 16 bit, sampled at 44.1Khz.}

I Am the Starlight

In about 1990, in order to capture more of the production feeling of the Rock Broadway musical number "I Am the Starlight", Terry worked with his producer and audio engineer Bob Dawson at Bias. They recorded multiple accompaniment tracks using piano, synthesizer keyboard, drum machine and bass guitar. With Bob Dawson as engineer, we added our duet vocals. (While this song has somewhat of a Broadway style feel, it is referred to as a rock musical.)

This magnificant motivational song focuses on capabilities we have within us that we can tap to achieve surprising things. In the musical Starlight Express, music by Andrew Lloyd Webber and lyrics by Richard Stilgoe, this powerful duet is sung as a dramatic dream sequence between the young steam engine, Rusty, and the mythical Starlight Express. While Rusty has big dreams of winning the championship railroad race, other engines and railroad cars think Rusty is not up to the task. In the musical, this dream sequence takes place in Act II after Rusty has been discouraged by all the other engines and rail cars. Starlight Express comes to Rusty in this motivational pinnacle number in Rusty's mind and exhorts Rusty to use the power from somewhere deep inside that makes anything possible.

IN FINAL EDITING. COMING SHORTLY - "I Am the Starlight" from rock musical Starlight Express:

Everly Brothers

After recording the dramatic inspirational rock broadway duet "I Am the Starlight", we recorded 2 simpler productions of songs about young love made famous by the Everly brothers. These songs are somewhat iconic romantic expressions in a "Country Rock" style.

The first is: "All I Have to Do Is Dream"


The second is: "Till I Kissed Ya"


"The Rose"

This song is in a ballad style. Terry and David were still singing with Sentimental Journey, which enabled us to ask another member from Sentimental Journey to join us in recording a multipart arrangement of the song "The Rose".

The original recording was made using the 3 parts from the sheet music. Much later, after conversion to digital, post production tuning remixing and remastering, David re-imagined the mix. He decided:

Credits: Terry played all the guitar tracks on his guitars, and synthesizer keyboardist is unknown. (Note. Use of guitar departs from the original recording by Bette Midler, which prominently featured piano.)

This is a simpler accompaniment production than for "I Am the Starlight" but more of a production than for the Everly brothers duets. As with all these songs, we had great fun creating this recording.

Listen to the fun we had.

IN FINAL EDITING. COMING SOON - "The Rose" from the film "The Rose":

Impact on Creation of TortoiseClimbing

Making these recordings provided hands-on experiences actually working in a professional recording studio, as distinguished from David's observation years earlier of Fague Springmann editing in the Edgewood studio in DC. These experiences with Terry and others gave David the confidence to undertake recording his 1st album, Solo Collection. It was privately released in 1993 on cassette tape. Recording and preparing that 1st private album, provided even more learning experiences in creation of recordings and their release.

TortoiseClimbing™ was created as part of releasing that private Solo Collection album in 1993. See Beginnings of TortoiseClimbing™.

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