We’re very excited to share with you how we developed a song by Nashville based songwriter Doug Mathis.
We met Doug at a songwriter event we produce in Nashville, TN called Nashville Rising Star. NRS is a singer-songwriter open mic contest that is unique in that the audience votes for their favorite song, and we bring industry judges in to vote for their favorite song. We do 7 weeks of preliminary events, with up to 20 songwriters at each event. 14 come back for the semi-finals, and 4 move onto the finals. The grand prize winner receives $500 cash, and other career advancing services! It’s an excellent event and has helped many who have been involved.
Doug came to one of our events and shared his song “America.” Right away, we knew this song could be a huge hit if it were produced the right way. Even with Doug performing the song with just his vocal and guitar, people loved the song and the response was tremendous! Doug made it to the finals of our Series 18 Rising Star!
We approached Doug about producing the song for him and he kindly obliged. Doug had recorded his version of the song at his home studio. Take a listen to what he came up with.
Not bad.. but it lacked the power and the punch that this song deserved. It also needed stronger musical hooks, although the opening guitar part was a strong hook in our opinion.
So, we took what Doug gave us (he sent us his lead vocal and his acoustic guitar part through the internet) which fortunately, was recorded to a 90BPM click track, and we developed a new demo with some new drum loops, electric guitar loops, and we played the B-3 organ, bass and strings off of keyboards and samples. Take a listen to our demo.
Getting better! We were liking the direction the song was going, it had that power and punch we were after, but it really needed new acoustic guitar, because Doug’s original part was a bit off time and the song needed tightened up. The electric guitar loops were good, but the song screamed for real electric guitar parts. We contacted our good friend, Glenn Thomas at ITUNE AUDIO to record a new acoustic and electric guitar parts. Glenn is very talented, and has an excellent studio located in Newfoundland of all places! We sent Glenn a mix without Doug’s guitar and Glenn recorded his parts and did a rough mix for us. Check it out!
New Guitar Parts
Well that really helped! Glenn’s acoustic part was a bit different than Doug’s, but we liked it. And the tone of his acoustic was great! It made the song less dark and heavy and opened the sound up quite a bit. And Glenn’s electric parts really brought the song to life! His tones and playing were just what the song needed! Soooo.. we thought we should keep going and replace the drum loops, as it was obvious they were loops, and real drums would punch it up (if played and recorded well.) We contacted Mr. Tony Morra from Downtown Batterie, one of the premier drummers in Nashville to see if he would record a drum part for us. Tony has a home studio and a reputation for having the best drum sounds around! We sent Tony a mix through the internet without the demo drums and bass so he could come up with whatever he felt fit the song the best. Check out what Tony came up with below. It’s AMAZING!
New Drum Part
Wow, that was a pleasant surprise for us! Tony came up with a slamming drum track, perfect for the song and his drums sounded HUGE! Perfect!! As you can tell, each time we replaced a part, the song came more and more alive. So, it was now time to have Glenn Thomas record a new bass part that matched Tony’s drums. Hear how the song sounds now!
New Bass Part
Now we’re getting some good low end vibe happening! Now for some finishing touches! Glenn is friends with a great singer from Georgia, Terry Chism. Terry and Glenn write songs together and Terry has an excellent voice. Terry added some back round vocal parts and sent them back to Glenn to add to the mix. The more we listened to the song, we more we felt it needed less of an 80’s rock guitar lead (although it was really good!) and more of a country lead. Who better to get than one of the top guitarists in Nashville, Jason Jordan. Turns out, Jason was also the co-writer of this song with Doug. Small world, this music scene is! All we needed was then for Doug to re-record his lead vocal track so it matched the intensity of all of the new parts we had recorded. Then, Glenn mixed and mastered the song for us.. Check out all our hard work below for the final mix!
The Final Mix
Perfect! The mix was what I was hearing in my head when I came up with the demo for Doug. All of the parts worked great with one another and complimented one another. Glenn’s mix and mastering were excellent!
The song is currently seeing lots of action from conservative organizations like Heritage Action, The National Tea Party, conservative talk show host Phil Valentine, and others! Doug is now busy sharing this song live at events and churches all over the USA!
We can do the same thing for you song! If you are interested, contact us and we’ll be happy to work with you at a price that may surprise you! Hope you enjoyed our chronology of a great song!