The last idea was the one that took. Why not go into the studio, hire some session players and create brand-new contemporary sounding tracks for these classic songs. Spin them off into the '90s so to speak. We then could put our classic vocals on top of these tracks, and create versions of these songs that could connect with a new generation. The idea was agreed-upon, but nothing happened for quite a while. One day I got a call from Tommy telling me that musicians were booked and that the tracks would be recorded the next day if I wanted to come. At that time I was only minimally interested in this project, and didn't have a lot of faith that it could be fresh and new. There was, of course, no way that I would not go to the studio, but I really didn't expect much to happen. What a surprise! The musicians were very committed to the material. We played the old versions in the studio on a boom box for them, and then, inspired by what they heard, they took the spirit of what we played into a whole new level of musical excellence. The tracks transcended anything we imagined. The rapport in the studio among the group was greater than we'd ever experienced of in the early days. This was 25 years later, and we had all grown-up quite a bit. There was a harmony and unity in the sessions that was a joy to experience. The tracks were completed in about three days at Schnee Studios in North Hollywood CA. We booked a small studio in the Hollywood Hills for the vocal overdubs, and we spent weeks making the vocals as beautiful as they could be. Tommy had hired Stan Endicott to produce the vocals, since none of us could be in the booth, but were needed out in the studio to sing the parts. Stan's input was incredible. We took the vocals into new places as well as the tracks, and the whole sound turned out far beyond our expectations.
Bill Schnee mixed the album in about a week. None of us would enter the studio until Bill had the mix close to finished. He would then take a break while we listened to the mix with fresh ears. We would make our observations and suggestions and Bill would then complete the mix. This was the first time that we ever used a computerized board, (as Love Song) which made the mixing easier and quicker.
One of the things that I was concerned about was that we might lose the spirit and charm of the original versions by tampering with them too much. In my opinion, this did not happen in the slightest. Instead I believe we contemporized the original tunes with a perfect blend of the old and the new. The songs turned out sounding fresh and new without sacrificing the spirit and feel of the originals. Even though, for whatever reason, this album did not sell that well, I believe it to be very special. It is a worthy addendum to a short but powerful body of work that impacted the lives of many people.Chuck Girard - Jan 1998
"Feel the Love" (Chuck Girard)
"Changes" (Chuck Girard/Denny Correll)
"Front Seat, Back Seat" (Chuck Girard/Tom Coomes)
"Cossack Song" (Tom Coomes/Tom Stipe)
"And the Wind Was Low" (Chuck Girard)
"Welcome Back" (Chuck Girard)
"Jesus Puts the Song In Our Hearts" (Chuck Girard/Fred Field)