Vicki Richards in the studio, 1998

As part of the campaign for the As one aflame laid bare by desire Kickstarter, I’ve gone on an archeological dig through old photos, notes, audio tapes, and Hi8 video tapes from the year before the album’s release. I’ve uploaded a great find to YouTube: Vicki Richards 1998, Recording in the Studio. This clip was shot in my studio in Chicago working on two tracks from Aflame, “Given” and “Russia.” Back then I planned to make a short documentary about the recording of the album which never ended up coming together.

It’s wonderful for me to see that moment in time again. I know so intimately the music that Vicki played on the album, but to actually watch her in the studio as we recorded it? That’s incredible — seeing her play it, her expressions, and our banter while recording. I love Vicki, we always had so much fun making music together. She’s so spontaneous, such an incredible improvisor. In the middle of the clip we create a loop, Vicki played some beautiful lines over it, leading to the Prokofiev at the end of “Russia,” recorded in one take!

I honestly didn’t even remember this footage existed. It wasn’t noted on the Hi8 tape’s insert card. Watching it for the first time a few weeks ago was emotional. I never thought I’d be able to transport back 25 years to that moment. Life is all about the moment. We live it, and then store it (or forget it), it’s just not possible to live it again. Except here we are, a few minutes out of our life! I have sonically relived it so many many times while listening to Aflame, now I can relive it in a much richer way.

Vicki wrote me, “Absolutely loved seeing this! How many times have I tried to explain the process of creating and collaborating in music?! This video is a treasured piece. Thank you very much for this!”

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We’re only 6 days into the Aflame Kickstarter and already 51% to the goal! 94 people want to make possible the remaster rerelease on lovely 2LP, CD + MD formats. Kickstarter is all or nothing, your support is most appreciated!