Bankesters Recording Blog – Day 5

Phil Bankester, peré of the lovely and talented Bankester family, has agreed to provide a running blogumentary of their home recording sessions this week.

We’re all exhausted after a very long but really great day. Last night we pushed as hard as we could, trying to get one more take in before another round of storms hit. We backed up the hard drives, shut everything down and unplugged gear, and lost power shortly afterward.

We started tracking this morning at 8:00 a.m., and finally quit at 11:00 p.m. Today was full of really great moments as all the rhythm tracks were finished and we spent more time doing vocals. We tracked the five part acapella that we rehearsed yesterday. Everyone recorded at the same time, but in five different rooms. I’m not sure about my part, but the ladies all sounded awesome!

We’ve enjoyed having another guest with us this week. Ben Jakobitz is the youngest of three siblings from Minnesota who wrote First Minnesota, one of the songs we recorded earlier in the week. He’s never been around a recording project like this, and has worked as the assistant engineer with our producer, Stephen Mougin.

I asked him how the song came about:

“My brother Will and I had been playing around on the banjo and guitar, and started to come up with a melody. After a short bit we both realized that the music would best fit a slower, more dramatic song.

We started doing some research on the Civil War and the battle of Gettysburg. Our sister Olivia started working on lyrics while Will and I continued with the music, and First Minnesota was born.

It’s about the First Infantry regiment from Minnesota who fought at Gettysburg. We never expected the song to be recorded, but are really excited to have it on The Bankesters’ new CD. It’s been really cool to be around during the recording and see the song come to life.

I’ve never had the chance to participate in the recording of an album, so getting to work with Stephen Mougin has been an amazing experience for me. Stephen has really helped expand my knowledge of the recording process and technology in general. Learning about microphone placement has been really interesting as he’d have me move a mic sometimes only a half inch and the sound would change.”