SECRETS - THE FIAT LUX DIARIES

 
JUNE 1983

Wed 1

All band members, wives & girlfriends etc, attend Flowers Of Evil gig at Heppy's Nitespot, Wakefield. The band premier some of the material produced by David in February.

Thur 2
Return costumes to Homburgs. Band don't want to part with them! Producer Hugh Jones rings to make arrangements to visit the boys prior to studio time which Polydor has booked for us in Liverpool. He has found a session drummer, Rick Martinez, to use on the recordings.

Fri 3
Hugh Jones arrives and spends the evening at Smithy Brook with the boys, going through material for the forthcoming recording session.

Sat 4
To Amazon Studios, Liverpool.  First Album track session with Hugh Jones. Up early and load gear to be off by 9am. Meet Rick Martinez at the studios, and get going on drum and guide tracks for "Diary" (Secrets). All stay at appropriately named Rockland Hotel, in nearby Huyton.

Sun 5
Amazon Studios. More guides and drum recording, this time on Photography and Aqua Vitae.

Mon 6
Amazon Studios. Rick Martinez finishes off drum parts. David works on bass guitar sounds ready for recording tomorrow.

Tues 7
Amazon Studios. Bass day. David has blister-y fingers by the end of the day. I come over to collect Steve and take him home. Meanwhile a freak thunderstorm knocks out the studio power at 10pm. Everyone watches it outside as it wasn't raining. Hugh tells ghost stories. No power by midnight so all return to hotel.

Wed 8
Amazon Studios. Hired Marimba arrives, so David and Hugh begin work on this but some of the recording equipment has been damaged by last nights power cut. Ian's Memorymoog  keyboard is also misbehaving, so after a number of false starts the day is written off. Ian and David go back to Wakefield. Steve returns to Liverpool to keep Hugh company. Janice Long mentions the power cut / lightening problem in her hand over with Peter Powell on Radio 1.

Thur 9
Amazon Studios. Ian and David return to Liverpool and work resumes with David on the Marimbas, then Ian provides synthesiser bass for "Diary" (Secrets). Hired Minimoog arrives and David spends time getting creative lead line sounds from it for all the songs so far.

Fri 10
Amazon Studios. Hugh works on bounce downs of tracks on Aqua Vitae. David adds further Moog, then spends large amount of time trying to recreate the plinky sound for Photography, which was liked by Hugh from the demo, but was hard to get on the more expensive kit they now had to hand. (It was originally recorded on Ian Booth's Juno - we now had the superior Jupiter 8).  Janice Long tells more tales of our lightning experience on Radio 1's Roundtable Programme.

Sat 11
Amazon Studios. David finally cracks the plinky sound to Hugh's satisfaction. It is decided that a violinist is needed for the solo in "Diary" (Secrets). Jeff the engineer suggest a man who recently did a Spanish guitar part on a China Crisis track there.  Everyone is puzzled, but a session man called Mike duly arrives, not with a violin but with a very heavy looking box. It turns out that he plays a Yamaha CS80 and we are all stunned at the result he gets out of this strange amalgam of a synthesiser and organ. After this revelation Ian adds and extra Marimba part to Photography. Chris Carr and entourage, wives, girlfriends etc visit the studio. Photographs are taken then I take everyone out for dinner leaving just Hugh and David at the studio doing keyboard parts until about 4am.

Sun 12
Amazon Studios. Take Hugh and David and Chris Carr back to the studio in the morning to listen to work in progress. Ian and Mary, Steve and Gill arrive later. More keyboard parts.

Mon 13
Amazon Studios. More keyboards, then Steve make a start on vocals. Hugh tires so all have a relatively early night.

Tues 14
Amazon Studios. More keyboard parts during the day then as its Hugh Jones's birthday we take him to Springfield restaurant in Liverpool for a meal. Back to Amazon in evening to try more vocals, but it isn't happening for Steve tonight, so after some David backing vocals the session is curtailed at 2.30am. Drive through the night to London.

Wed 15
Arrive at the Columbia Hotel at 6.30am only to find that there is no room booking. There is only one twin room. Hugh and David win the toss and get the beds while the rest of us sleep on the floor! We find out later that Polydor's travel people had booked the nearby Everad without telling us of the change! I get up first and take the gear to Whitehouse Studio, which Hugh has booked as a stopgap to progress with vocals.  Band arrives slightly jaded and Steve sets about the all important lead vocal parts while David and Ian shop in nearby Kings Road. When they return in the evening there are still difficulties getting "the one" so Ian provides sax parts on Photography instead.

Thur 16
RG Jones Studio Wimbledon. This is Hugh's favourite studio for mixing, but the band are running behind schedule, so the recording continues, with Ian finishing off his sax parts and further last minute keyboard enhancements. Steve then tries a vocal on "Diary" (Secrets).

Fri 17
RG Jones Studio Wimbledon. Steve provides vocals for Photography and Aqua Vitae. David does backing vocals on "Diary". Rick Martinez comes over to see how things have progressed since his drumming session. Chris Carr and Sarah arrive with wine.

Sat 18
RG Jones Studio Wimbledon. Mixdowns. One final piano part for "Diary" played by Hugh, then it's down to the mixing. I take most of the gear back to Yorkshire. Mixing continues until 6am with one small break for dinner early evening.  Chris Marshall the plugger comes to listen while the band are away.

Sun 19
RG Jones Studio Wimbledon. Mixdowns. Hugh works through until 1030am Monday to finish the job before the next booking comes in. The band take it in shifts to support his efforts.

Mon 20  
Mixing complete. I take the band to Polydor. All taken to the pub with Vanda and product manager Paul Lowe. Chris Carr arrives. Back to Polydor to play A&R head Alan Sizer the new tapes. Hugh joins us. All agree that "Diary" (Secrets) is the favourite track. I drive David and Ian back to Yorkshire. Steve stays with friends in London and returns next day with stitches in his head (?) .

Sun 26
To London. Checked into "The Crystals Rooms" at Lancaster Gate Hotel. Band go to the nearby Columbia Hotel to socialise with Hugh who is staying there.

Mon 27
Producers Workshop Fulham: This is Hugh's production companies studio which has been booked as a "catch up" day. Ian puts down sax parts on Aqua Vitae. Chris Carr and assistant Sarah Swain come down at 10pm. Break from recording to discuss release strategy in anticipation of Polydor meeting tomorrow. The band feel that "Diary" should not be the first single that comes out of the current sessions, but that we should test the water with something else first. Back to the studio for Steve to sing new vocals to Aqua Vitae. Late finish - 4 am.

Tues 28
Ian on holiday. Afternoon meeting with Polydor. Paul Lowe, Billy Keane and Alan Sizer from the Polydor side. It is agreed that Photography, b/w Aqua Vitae will be the first Polydor Fiat Lux release. Nigel from the Graphics department then has a meeting about sleeve design. A big gang of Polydor folk spend evening with us first in the Grosvenor and then on to the Columbia where we are now once again staying. Issac Guillory calls in on us with his girlfriend.

Wed 29
Producers Workshop Fulham: Actually due in at The Townhouse but their SSL desk has a breakdown so hastily recant to Fulham. In between have another meeting with graphics man Nigel, and pick photos from the Richard Haughton session to go on the single sleeve. David and Steve do backing vocals to Aqua Vitae. Another 4 am finish.

Thur 30
The Townhouse Studio, London: Hugh with Steve re-doing "Diary" (Secrets) main vocals. Hugh then continues with a remix. David and I meet Chris Carr and John Casson before heading back to Wakefield.

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