Wed 12th Jan – 5th day recording. All but two songs down. Visit to the Christina Noble Children’s Foundation
I was in recording for a half day today as Karen, Kayla and I had arranged to deliver some things to the Christina Noble Foundation, a foundation set up for local children. Kayla came with me to recording and I got straight into it polishing off about 5 songs by midday when we left. Only two songs (“I Don’t Mind” and “Too Late the Hero”) still required main vocals. Kayla and I ordered a taxi and met up with Karen at Stella’s for lunch.
After lunch, Karen was getting stomach cramps and so we decided that just Kayla and I would go to the foundation. Karen was very disappointed – she was the one who had organised the whole “Carry For Kids” thing; contacting people in the first place, finding out what we could bring, buying all the things to donate etc.
Kayla and I caught a taxi to the foundation, found our way in and introduced ourselves at reception. The lady there took the bags and asked if we would like a tour.
After a 5 minute wait, the volunteer co-ordinator, an Irish girl named Maeve, took us around the school. She was careful to explain that they were not an orphanage, but a centre for underprivileged children. Some of the children there went home each night to parents who may be beggars, or people who roam the streets selling sunglasses, vouchers, books and cigarette lighters.
We went into several areas with different ranges of ages including a crèche of bubs and a special needs area where some of the kids had mental or physical disabilities. Kayla held a couple of the tots as Maeve explained more about the school. It was a very positive experience and we’re glad to have been able to help out in a small way.
Thu 13th Jan – Final day finishing off vocals and doing some backups. Show at Acoustic
The following day it was back to the studio for the last time, to put the main vocals down on the two remaining songs, and then to see what we could do with backup vocals and guitar lines. Although we’d done heaps of work in all areas of each song, it was all quite nebulous- we had (and still have) no idea on whether we’ve covered everything. We won’t know until I start mixing it all together back in Australia. Having said that, it did feel like we’d done as much as we could expect to have done in the time we had.
That night we played a gig at “The Acoustic Bar”. This was the first place we’d been to in HCMC that was a dedicated performance venue; people went there to see bands and maybe have a drink, rather than the other way around. It felt a bit like the cock-fighting or fight-club venues you see in the movies… seats all around the (tiny) stage so that you have to fight your way through with instruments to get there, set up while everyone is watching and then fight your way back to the bar for a drink while waiting to start. We had a 50 minute show here tonight, which meant another set rewrite.
I was quite happy with what I had done in this regard – I managed to include most of the new originals and a couple of crowd-pleaser covers, and the flow of the set was good. The crowd was very appreciative; we got huge applause after every song. I was feeling pretty good about the whole thing until I announced the last song for the night…. I got a large round of applause for that, too.