After playing with Kate on New Years eve 2008 and getting to know her father Peter, they very nicely asked me to play on her CD... with Sonny Caulfield. I jumped at the chance for sure.
The way the recording had to take place was very backwards to what you hear on the recording. Setup in a ballroom at the Delta, Sonny played his complete arrangements on Piano from beginning to end... intros, verses, choruses, solos, and endings... after these performances were captured, they were given to Alan Dowling and myself... then we had to learn the arrangements, essentially note for note.
Now ... if you remotely know what sonny was like, his arrangements were never the same twice... it was the only logical way for him to do it. Impossible to record arrangements live with a trio as Sonny improved and added changes so frequently ...
It was a busy period in my life and I literally had to stay up until 4am a few nights in a row with a guitar, and endless sheets of paper, transcribing the changes of his 13 tracks from beginning to end. but boy was it worth it..
with my crazy charts, I went to the studio with Alan and we just played along with Sonny's tracks ..while Sonny was out in the booth watching and of course listening.
In one of the few gigs outside of the Delta hotel walls with Sonny, I played Kate's CD launch at the victoria playhouse. We had no rehearsal but had the CD to go on.. as I mentioned Sonny rarely played the same thing twice... so it was, as always with Sonny, a fly by the seat of your pants evening... but as always rewarding.
As it turned out, Sonny needed a drive back to town so I volunteered. We had a great conversation ... In a very rare delicate moment, Sonny was apologizing for his playing that evening ( ???? ) ... I didn't' know what to say... I wasn't used to it. He was frustrated because he had charts but had a lot of trouble seeing the charts due to the lighting.... and also told me he was very nervous ( ???? ) .. this is the guy who has played with everyone .. I was dumbfounded that a guy like him could still get nervous.
We're all human I suppose.