224 days until the Man burns....

The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion

The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion

The Black Crowes - The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion
The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion is the second album by the American blues rock group The Black Crowes, released on May 12, 1992.  Recorded at Southern Tracks in Atlanta, produced by George Drakoulious, engineered and mixed by Brendan O' Brien. Southern Tracks has an SSL 4072G and tons of outboard production extras.   This record definitely hits my top ten list of best headphone records out there, and Brendan O' Brien I'm certain is responsible for at least three or more of them whether we're talking about Pearl Jam ("10"), The Red Hot Chili Peppers ("Blood, Sugar, Sex, Magic"), or Rage Against The Machine ("Renegades").

Said Gregory Curtis of Rolling Stone, "Everything on The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion works, including the oblique title, which Chris Robinson took from a hymnal. The rhythm section is propelled by Steve Gorman's take-charge yet musical drumming. Johnny Colt remains on bass, but since Money Maker, Marc Ford has replaced rhythm guitarist Jeff Cease in the band and Ed Harsh has replaced Chuck Leavell in the studio on keyboards. These changes have only improved the rich tapestry of sound that backs Chris Robinson's singing and his brother's flamethrower lead guitar. George Drakoulia's production is sharp enough to give every instrument its proper voice, yet the sound has the welcome looseness and texture of a concert recording."

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I've been revisiting this recording of 1992, both in my ear buds and on the back patio in surround sound; the essence of the polished live performance captured in the studio is crisp, and the professionalism of everyone involved in capturing and delivering this stellar moment in rock and roll shines through in the excellent stereo separation, and absolute magical mastering of the tapestry presented.  The addition of the more technically gifted guitarist Marc Ford and a full-time organist gives the Black Crowes room to stretch out on The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion, perhaps the band's finest moment. Using Rich Robinson's descending chord progressions as a base, the band grooves its way through a remarkably fresh-sounding collection of Faces-like rockers and ballads, tearing into the material with flair and confidence and really coming into its own as a top-notch rock & roll outfit, while the focus is undeniably on the band's musical chemistry.

Black Crows Jimmy Page
Imagine meeting one of your guitar heros at such an early age.  This is no lottery moment - it's the result of hard work, and dedication to their craft, coupled with hard decisions and sticking to your guns.