A Magical Experience: The Making of a CD

Posted on 5.16.2018 by Megan Henderson, music director

A Magical Experience: The Making of a CD

recording_image_for_blog_5_250.jpgRecording is hard work… surrendering to long hours of often repetitive music-making with hypervigilant attention to detail, patiently waiting for the airplane to pass overhead or the truck to rumble out of earshot on the adjacent gravel driveway, tuning and re-tuning temperamental, multi-stringed bowed instruments in ever-changing temperatures and humidity levels, conceding defeat to the inevitable sneeze, remaining calm during power outages and rain pelting on the roof…you get the idea.

All the while, the spirit of (and our love for) the music that we are preserving on a disc must remain front and center. All involved parties conspired to make this happen in our most recent recording project which took place at the Finnish Center at Saima Park in Fitchburg, MA the first weekend in May. Many people commented on the palpable magic of being on Finnish ground! An adult chorus of 39 folks, a children’s chorus of 14, brass quintet, tympani, handbells, harp, percussion, nyckelharpa, hardingfele, 5-string fiddle, double bass, gemshorns, solo singers and accordion filled the newly renovated barn with amazing music from Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Iceland. (Ironically, the Finnish music is being recorded in CA). The cozy control room was established in the Finnish Library next to the barn, replete with costumes, instruments and beautiful books from and about Finland. The flowing brook provided a steady calming presence amidst these long, arduous and often joy-filled days. Best of all, we made some lovely new friends with the wonderful people who run and care for the Finnish Center…each one of them of Finnish descent. A big thanks to all at Saima Park, for your warm welcome and generous hospitality. Finally, a big thanks to George Emlen, for lending his sharp ear in the recording booth all weekend long. It was great to have George back in the thick of a Revels recording. Check back in a few months to order your copy of our new CD!

Thank you to Paul Buckley who gave up his Sunday to come out a photograph our recording. See the photos here.