Tuneage Tutelage - New Music Monday....Wednesday Edition

Sparks Of Insanity By Vinny "Bond" Marini Wednesday, June 10, 2009

It is like the gods of music technology read my post from yesterday.

It has been announced that Woodstock: 3 Days of Peace & Music Director's Cut (40th Anniversary Ultimate Collector's Edition) is now out there for sale.

I can remember the first time I sat in a theater and watched the documentary about this historic occasion. The music just soared. Sure some of the sound quality left something to be desired, but man…it was LIVE…outdoors…half a million people.

The concert was released on VHS years ago and then on DVD a few years back. This new collection can also be bought in the Blu-ray format.

There are three hours of extras – including two hours of rare performance footage with songs from Paul Butterfield, Creedence Clearwater Revival, The Grateful Dead, Johnny Winter & Mountain who played at Woodstock but never appeared in any previous film version, plus a third hour of featurettes showcasing interviews from Martin Scorsese, Director Michael Wadleigh, and Producer Michael Lang.

If you purchase the special kit produced just for Amazon, you get an additional 20 minutes of exclusive content with never-before-seen performance footage in hi-def from Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, and Country Joe and the Fish plus three bonus featurettes!

Sounds incredible. That is, until I began to read further and watched the 3-minute video found HERE.

You see, they brought some musicians back into the studio to overdub parts where the recording was not perfect.

OVERDUBBING on a live album? Well, HECK-A-DOODLE, it is not like there have not been edits done on live recordings before. Many live albums are made up of parts of songs from different nights on the tour. But, to go into a STUDIO to overdub a LIVE performance?

If it has been done in the past, I am unaware. As someone commented over at Amazon, it feels like you decided to paint over the Mona Lisa…sigh.

But, I still might have to buy this sucker - especially for all the additional footage never released.

Say hello to Chrissy Coughlin and her featured CD, LOOK AHEAD, the next guest to sit on THE COUCH and entertain us with her music.

From her bio, we learn the following:
Raised in numerous places including Detroit, Kansas City, and Washington DC, Chrissy is no stranger to moving around and making things work for her. Her ease with meeting people from all different walks of life through her travels throughout the country and the world has afforded her the ability to translate those experiences into intensely thoughtful songs.

Chrissy didn't start off a singer-songwriter. In fact, it was only after a post college career in the environmental field, when she allowed herself the time to sit down and to develop her craft. Music has always been in her blood as an accomplished flutist and singer but songwriting was new. And she was more than ready for the challenge.

Living in DC, working an intense job, playing out at night, and performing songs from her debut CD, You Never Know, confirmed everything Chrissy was feeling up to this point that it was the right time to dedicate all her attention and efforts to music full time.

Chrissy quit her job, packed her bags and moved to the cozy woods of New Hampshire. Living in a beautiful and tranquil environment she enlisted the help from some of Boston's best musicians to record and create Look Ahead. And it has paid off.

Look Ahead is, in a word, FANTASTIC. When I first loaded the CD, I was doing things on the computer and letting the music play in the background.

I tend to do this with new music. I let the first play happen while I am otherwise occupied. This is a test for me. Does the music pull me away from the otherwise and make me pay attention to it?

In this case, the answer was a resounding yes. Ms. Coughlin has been compared to Lucinda Williams, Sheryl Crow and Natalie Merchant. Most times comparisons are pretty weak. In this case they are not.

There were numerous occasions when Ms. Coughlin does remind you of those three fine ladies.

At the same time, there is something different about her vocals. She has the ability to be that rocker chick ("Back To You") and then transform into Lillith Faire ("Look Ahead"). It is a tough course to navigate and though many have tried, few have suceeded.

Ms. Coughlin even has the chops to take on the Robert Plant/Woodruffe Blunt song "Big Log" and with Tim Pike letting his fingers fly over the guitar frets, she gives an excellent interpretation.

Ms. Coughlin wrote or co-wrote every song on the CD (with the exception of "Big Log"), and she has a way with words and phrasing.

In "On The Surface" Ms. Coughlin seems to be trying to bring a friend back from a crisis of ego when she sings;

"You can tell everybody
Your skin is made of gold
And your eyes the brightest emeralds.
But you've got to know
Yeah I know you know
You ain't fooling anyone"

In the end, Chrissy Coughlin is a talented woman who does not need to be compared to established artists. Once she is given the airplay deserved, she will build a strong following and sometime down the line some new artist will be compared to Chrissy.

Her CD is professionally packaged. I say this, because many new artists are hard pressed for dollars and, as some of you know, there are times they come in just a cardboard sleeve. This package is slick, has plenty of information and includes a separate booklet with lyric ans credits.

We sent Chrissy some questions via email and she was kind enough to respond.


How long have you been playing and what was your first instrument?
I have been singing since as long as I can remember but I would say 'officially' since I was in the 9th grade. I picked up the guitar after college. The flute is my first instrument and I started playing in the 5th grade!

Who/what are your main musical influences?
I love Lucinda Williams, Stevie Nicks, Patty Griffin, Sting, Bono....they all have touched me in different ways whether it be musical style, performance style, business acumen. These are all incredible people.

What's your favorite iPod track this week?
Sometime Around Midnight - The Airborne Toxic Event

Are you working on any music right now?
I am writing a couple of new tunes right now. I just bought a keyboard so I am working on a few ideas out on the keyboard. It's new and different and I am having a lot of fun with it.

Do you support any specific charities and how do you give back as an artist?
I work with Musicians on Call - a non-profit where musicians like myself play at hospitals for the patients. It is really rewarding and at times very emotional. Music is so powerful and it really helps these patients heal. It's a fabulous group to be involved with. I also support The Salvation Army.

What is the most adventurous food you've ever eaten?
I pretty much like all types of food. The most adventurous food I have ever eaten is actually something I don't know exactly what it was. I was in Northern Thailand and, let's just put it this way, I went vegetarian the rest of the trip!

Do you follow any sports, if so, which ones?
I don't regularly follow any sports but I love the Red Sox and catch the games from time to time. I also love tennis and hit up the big tournaments. (on TV).

You have $5 to spend on dinner. What are you eating?
A big yummy burrito. Although in NYC, it's pretty hard to find one for $5. You have to look hard!

Thank you Chrissy...well except for that Red Sox thing...

Here are some places you can check out Ms. Coughlin live over the next few weeks:

SAT 07/11/09 Genghis Cohen Hollywood, CA 7:00pm 21+ $10
SAT 07/11/09 Red Horse Cafe Brooklyn, NY 8:00pm 21+ $5 suggested donation
THU 07/26/09 Rockwood Music Hall, NYC 3:00pm 21+ $5 suggested donation
SUN 08/06/09 Chelsea Loft, Chelsea, NYC

Don’t forget to vote in the poll and leave a comment about Ms. Chrissy Coughlin. I can almost guarantee she will be by to visit sometime today.

And the CD is up for grabs...let me know in comments.

This is "On The Surface" and "Big Log"

12 Of Your Sparks

  1. Considering what Woodstock represented, it is a bit crass to over dub the live recordings. I'll have to think about that. Interesting new artist. The music is good...

  2. DrillerAA09 Says:
  3. Ahhh Woodstock. I saw the original film in the theater. I suspect some that were there will actually hear the music for the first time when they see the dvd's.
    Chrissy kind of grows on you. At first I thought it was a little too Taylor Swifty, but the second song is really nice.

  4. ...thoroughly enjoyed second tune...I can still recall watching Ten Years After on the big screen for the first time...overdub? what does it REALLY matter if the overall sound is superior?...

  5. Jay Says:
  6. I enjoyed the films and documentaries and stuff about Woodstock that I've seen. I'm pretty sure I would have hated being there though.

    That Chrissy Coughlin chicks is pretty good. I like chicks with guitars.

  7. Bond Says:
  8. BUD: Totally crass Sir. Glad you like her

    DRILLERAA: I agree she does grow on you and the rest of the CD is good

    PHFRANKIE: Glad you enjoyed Sir. I agree that the sound problems are what made the original so real

    JAY: And chicks with guitars like you1

  9. JohnH985 Says:
  10. I had read about some of the music being overdubbed on the Woodstock movie also. Like you I was kind of shocked...how can it be a live track if they're in the studio recording it? I'd rather hear a bad audio track of it live than pretend it's live. But like you I may still have to buy the movie, it's a piece of history.

    Really like Chrissy Coughlin. Very good.

  11. Travis Says:
  12. You're not kidding, are you? I don't mind the live concert albums that pick up recordings from different nights on the tour. But to dub a once-in-a-lifetime show with studio recordings just because some of it didn't sound good?


    Liked Chrissy.

  13. Bond Says:
  14. JOHN: I would love if they had made the original available AND then, if you felt the need to change history, also include the over-dub
    I thought you might...

    TRAVIS: I wish I were Sir. I wish I were. My reaction also.
    Yup...she has something special.

  15. Tug Says:
  16. LOVE her! I'm totally against overdubbing, especially something as huge as Woodstock. OK, anything really. If you want to do that, offer both - people can then make the choice to purchase the original or the 'fake'.

    Between you & I, could we get a Red Sux fan converted? ;-)

  17. Whoa, whoa, whoa....hold de phone here....overdubbing a LIVE ALBUM? WTF?

    Is that a pig I see flying outside my window?

  18. Micky-T Says:
  19. Live, outdoor recordings should not be perfect. Perfect is for the studio album, not a muddy stage.
    I bet it's still really good though!

  20. Dana Says:
  21. Ms. Coughlin has a wonderful, soothing voice, and her music is great, but she's just not my thing - which likely means she'll be highly successful!


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