Greenwheel’s Ryan Patrick Jordan e-mailed an update to fans from the studio. He writes:
Well hello there!
I must first apologize that it has taken me this long to update everyone. The last few months have been short, but filled with long days. Does that make any sense? We have been in L.A. since February 10th (which we arrived after a 36 hour straight drive). We headed out here after our short tour in the Midwest, which was a lot of fun and very helpful to the recording process. Thank you to all who came out. Your undying support was a huge inspiration.
When we arrived in L.A. we did not waste any time and got straight to work on a few new tunes. We wrote two brand new songs in the first week we were here and then started recording at Soundcity Studios (check out the video section of the website for a couple short video clips of us at the studio). This studio is marvelous. So many great artists have recorded here and the facilities are powerfully inspiring to say the least. We’ve spent the last 8 weeks banging out all of our songs over and over until we get a great take. Normally when recording, you track the drums first and then record everything else later on top of that. We’ve been recording everything at the same time so we could capture the energy of us all playing together. Sometimes it takes 30-40 takes to accomplish what we need, sometimes 2 or 3. We wanted to make sure that the emotion and energy was there, but also that the instruments stayed in tune and that there were no serious mistakes. Whenever we get a good performance that everyone can agree on, we move on to something else, and then come back and try to beat it later. We take breaks here and there to play ping-pong and Ms. Pac-Man. Doug has ruled Ms. Pac-Man with a high score somewhere in the 150,000’s. He is a very talented young man. Our producer Jim, has been quite an influence on us and has pushed us to improve and expand on our individual parts. All of the engineers and studio employees have been great to us and have built an environment for us to feel as creative as possible. We’ve been working from 2pm to 2am everyday with a few days off here and there. It has been exhausting, but very rewarding and we always leave with an overwhelming feel of accomplishment. It has been such a treat to watch our songs grow and mature over the last year. And now, to hear them on tape is a rather rewarding experience. I guess it is similar to watching your children grow up. I have so many favorites. It is going to be tough to narrow it down to how ever many we put on the final album. And since we keep writing new songs constantly, that decision is getter harder and harder. The thought of not putting all of them on the record deeply saddens me. Regardless, this project has truly turned into something we will cherish for the rest of our lives.
We haven’t got out much to see the town. We try to get as much rest as we can between recording, writing, and compulsively thinking about what we can do to the material to make it better. I did get a chance to go to the Opera with a friend of mine who lives in town. I saw “Madama Butterfly” by Giacomo Puccini. I would write a review, but I am not much of a critic. Here is a link (since removed) with all the info about it.
This was my first experience at the Opera, and I was intrigued and very inspired. It helped that they put the words on a little screen above the stage, other wise I would have had no idea what they were singing. My Italian is less than mediocre. The whole production was beautiful. The stage, the costumes, and most importantly the music, was captivating. I was in awe the whole time by these people’s voices. They sounded like gods. Holding out these long notes that filled the house with an air of artistry I have never witnessed in my life. Every aspect of the production was well thought out and I am glad that I got to experience something like that. It opened my mind tremendously to the power of music and theater. And how many beautiful works of art there is out there that I have never even heard of.
We met Melissa Etheridge at her House of Blues concert, and she was very humble and appreciative to what we have contributed to her new record. We couldn’t stay for the concert, because we were on studio time, but nonetheless it was great to finally meet her and shake her hand. She is a very centered and warm personality.
Andy, Brandon and I did manage to sneak onto the list at the Island Def Jam/Pl**boy Mansion Party [censored because of search engine image filters] for Everlast. We had a band arm wrestling tournament to see which of us got to attend. It was quite amusing. There wasn’t a bunch of bunnies running around, but I did see ol’ Hugh (damn he looks good for a guy his age) and I hung out in the famous grotto. Everlast played a few tunes off his new record; we congregated with some IDJ folks and drank lots of free Jose Cuervo! I did a little Melrose shopping when my girlfriend Carly was in town (nothing is better than a woman’s opinion on clothing) and we ate at some fine restaurants. The band has been living off of large doses of Baja Fresh, the best Mexican fast food in the world. Some Fatburger, which has great double turkey burgers that will leave you on the treadmill for a few hours, and Jamba Juice, home of the world’s best smoothies. We have also been treated to some of Doug’s vegetarian cuisine, and Marc’s world famous chili. We watched some movies (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is AMAZING!), read books, played a few video games, but mostly our heads have been involved in music.
I am longing to be on the road playing this material in front of our fans and new faces to get a reaction from everyone. We have definitely matured since Soma Holiday (musically and personally) and we look forward to what the future holds for us. The record industry is in a strange place right now and all we can do is make the best album we can offer and work our tails off to get it to as many people as possible. I cannot express my excitement enough about this new material. Rest assured that you will have something thoughtful, emotional, and down right bootylicous to listen too. We took a lot of chances with this material and tried a lot of new things, which have all paid off in several ways. I can’t describe it very well, so I guess you will just have to wait.
Everyone has stepped up so big on this record, and contributed in every aspect of song writing. I can say that my biggest inspiration throughout this whole process has been this band. We have all pushed each other to become so much more, learning every instrument we can, writing songs and bringing them to the table, and having an ear to listen and ideas and information to grow on. I’m truly blessed to be where I am and I wouldn’t change a thing. Andy, Marc, Doug and Brandon have helped me grow and I am honored to be working with such creative and beautiful spirits, they are my heroes.
We apologize that it has taken us thing long to get something to you guys, but I assure you that it will be worth the wait. We look forward to touring and making fools of ourselves, on and off the stage, and nursing this album into whatever it may mature to. We currently have no tour plans, but all that will work itself out shortly and we will let you all know as soon as it does. Thank you all for your patience and continued support, we look forward to growing with all of you in the years to come!
Ryan Patrick Jordan
Here are a few recommendations.
Book: “The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle – Haruki Murakami
Movie: “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” (or any other Charlie Kaufman movie. This one though, is my favorite.)
Album: The Shins – Chutes too Narrow