We were so cavalier in those days. So casual, so unimpressed by what we were doing. So uninformed by the genius of those who would circle around us, meekly, eyeing the open microphones and the weighty reels of two-inch virgin magnetic tape — ready to record music that, twenty years later, would be regarded in many cases as iconic. We were fools in young men's clothing.
Not just us, but the artists themselves. "That's a piece of shit. Let's roll back over it." How many times did I hear that? I heard that two dozen times from Keith Richards alone within a span of two dozen hours, and had the temerity to obey him only half that many times. I wish I had ignored him altogether.
Other times it was "Why did we even mix that? Label it an out-take, or Studio Reference. Do what you want with it. We don't need it. Don't bill us for the quarter-inch tape."
Here are five out-takes from five geniuses. They called themselves "Oregon". Paul McCandless and Ralph Towner were the two movers and shakers. This was part of the "jazz fusion" hysteria, addressed elsewhere in this collection of essays.
I wish I had a time machine to jump into. I would dial up 1978, North Brookfield, Massachusetts and make my way from there.
Three Times Four
All original material copyright © Gilbert Scott Markle. All rights reserved.