must’ve taken a long time to come out, because I distinctly
remember that I was still in bad personal shape during the recording.
Elliott Scheiner was the producer, and the two guys that made
up Far Cry were Phil Galdston and Peter Thom. Phil has gone on
to become a hit songwriter, although I’ve lost track of
Peter. The connection with them came because they were managed
by a guy from Robert Stigwood named Jeff Tornberg, who was also
managing David Werner at the time. New York was a small world
in those days.
We recorded at AR Studios, and Phil Ramone was executive producer
and would pop in from time to time. The session musicians who
played with me were all great. I got to play with Bernard Purdy,
one of the great drummers of all time, who had the most amazing
shuffle I had ever heard. He had a little Premier kit with an
18” bass drum. Too much!
But this was my first introduction to the Steely Dan school of
recording. Everything was written out, even the guitar parts.
I had been up for 3 days before the session and walked in completely
disheveled. Galdston said “You look suitably dazed”,
which was my natural state in those days. I was in no mood to
read, but had to. I also gave Elliott Scheiner a hard time about
his clean guitar sounds because I had been recording with Clearmountain
for so long and was used to some dirty sounds with a lot of room
ambience on them. Of course now I cringe when I think that Elliott
Scheiner’s only memory of me is of the surly rock character
that I was.
Called in later to overdub my solos, it was more of the Steely
Dan approach. You had heard that they would have four different
guitar players in for a solo, punching in each note, even using
combinations of different players for the same solo. Well, it
was like that. I couldn’t get more than two bars into it
before I would be stopped, hummed some phrase, punched in, hummed
some other phrase, etc. Micro-managed into the ground, they’re
not really solos that I think represent me or for that matter
did them much good either. But that’s show biz, I guess.