Hymns and Songs for Living: Phase II – 2019 to 2000
The Long Hiatus
The extended hiatus in completing the Hymns and Songs for Living album between phase I and phase II was driven by many competing things in the lives of both David Goettee and Ms. Heidi Gerber-Salins.
However, the extended hiatus included creative exchanges between them that developed the guiding thoughts for what improvements would be good for the sonic quality to complete the envisioned quality product. Based on critically analyzing the draft materials, David brainstormed thoughts with Ms. Heidi Gerber-Salins for building on the solid foundation completed in phase I. Out of that came the detailed specifications for those hymns whose harmonies and accompaniments would benefit from being enhanced or revised to more fully flesh out harmonies and accompaniments.
Examples of improvements identified, included:
A few hymns where additional vocal harmonies would help;
Hymns where the sound of the electronic keyboard accompaniments imitating pipe organ were bothersome;
Hymns where the "ear candy" for other percussion instrument accompaniments that was added with the electronic keyboards was bothersome;
One or two hymns where there was good material, but the vocal draft mix had created a less that desirable final vocal mix.
Actions in Phase II
In his role as Associate Producer, Mr. Bill McElroy:
Reached out to persons he knew in the choral industry in the Ashland, Virginia regional area (Richmond to Fredericksburg) for recommendations of vocal artists in the area with skills needed to provide the needed additional vocal harmony parts;
Identified a source for obtaining a higher-grade electronic keyboard for use in replacing some of the percussion instrument accompaniments "ear candy."
Nogotiated access to the best pipe organ in the Ashland area.
Negotiated participation of the Professor at Randolph Macon College who teaches organ, to play the replacement pipe organ accompaniments. That included using a number of alternative accompaniment tunes on various verses of some hymns.
Ms. Heidi Gerber-Salins of All Access Audio of Silver Spring, MD, made time available from her teaching schedule to provide some off-line sound processing.
All other work on revisions to finalize this recording were performed by Mr. Bill McElroy of Slipped DISC of Ashland, VA. They included:
Scheduling and managing addition of vocal harmonies on hymns identified;
Re-recording Welcome Home with David as the lead, and the addition of a chorus for the refrains;
Identifying a source to write a new guitar accompaniment part for Welcome Home, and getting it recorded;
On location recording of real pipe organ at Duncan Memorial United Methodist Church;
Faciliated contact with the hand bell choir director at Duncan Memorial UMC for addition of hand bell harmonies on last verse of Just A Closer Walk with Thee; and
For phase II, the previously recorded analogue tracks with Dolby SR noise reduction on the 2-inch, 24 track master tapes were converted by Bias Recording Studio to digital format at 24 bits at a sampling rate of 88.2 khz.