I’m not exactly sure where I got it from or when it started, but I have always liked something more if I see how it was made.
About 3 years ago, I was flipping channels and I happened across a PBS special on Herbie Hancock – Possibilities. It’s a documentary that shows the making of the album: Possibilities. Now, to this point, I had one Herbie Hancock disk in my collection and as far as being able to identify a song besides “Rockit“, I would fall short with anything past Cantaloupe Island. This album featured duos with Sting, Paul Simon, John Mayer & Christina Aguilera, to name a few. I think what I will remember most about watching it was that Truce came and sat next to me when he heard Christina Aguilera singing and watched then entire show with me. This was 3+ years ago and Truce didn’t stay put for more than 2 minutes if Elmo wasn’t involved. So, for him to sit and watch a non-Sesame Street documentary for about 2 hours, floored me. I think that may be the night that he started to like jazz. I can put on the jazz station in the car and he will listen away. He likes the horns best. But, I fell in love with the creative process that was shown. Songs from that album make the iPod top 25 list a couple years back, that is for sure.
About the same story is true for the song “In Repair” off of Continuum, by John Mayer. I didn’t really like the song that much, but included in the disk was the video of the making of that song. I was amazed to find out that the keyboard/organ sound at the beginning of the song is actually a guitar. The video shows John having no song at the beginning of the day to putting the finishing touches on it at 1 a.m. Being able to create a song in one day and being able to watch that was cool. In Repair remains one of my favorite songs on that album.
After seeing David Gray’s “making of” video for Life in Slow Motion, I bought his entire catalogue. So, if you want me to get hooked on a group or album, just include a video that shows them in the studio and I will plop my money down.