United Dictators of Mars: The Music of Tom Mody & Jeffrey Harris







Mody Harris Band history


Mody Harris Band History


Contact Tom & Jeff







cover art for Harbinger album Harbinger
released 1990
Edge of Insanity
The Witness

Jeffrey Harris - vocals Todd Hensley - guitar
Billy Pierce - bass Gary Sobolewski - drums

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Harbinger 1 recording was fun. We were ready as we played anywhere and everywhere whenever we could. Our stuff was down. I had this Tascam Porta One 4 track mini studio recorder. I think I still have it somewhere but haven't used it since the '90's. I also used my Yamaha spx90, Alesis midiverb II, Digitech dsp128, Digitech dsp128+, DOD comp/limiter, Aphex aural exciter and Peavey parametric EQ for outboard gear.

I recorded Gary Soebolewski's (A.K.A. Scary Gary S.) drums utilizing all 4 tracks. The kick drums were recorded in track one. The snare was recorded in track two. The toms were recorded in track three. All cymbals were in track four. I then ping-ponged them down to track one which had to be as right as I could get the mix. The bass was then recorded on track two then ping-ponged to the same track as the drums. Billy had some difficulty with his bass recordings but in the end they were fine. Again it had to be just right. The guitar tracks were done using the same method. Then the solos would be recorded and ponged to track two. We sort of took our time with Todd's solos. Todd is an improv soloist so we did numerous takes to get the ones he liked most. In many cases during playback, he would like the first half or the second half and things like that. So, believe it or not, I would punch him in and out in segments to make the solo the way he wanted it all the way through. It was painstaking but we pulled it off where you won't ever notice where these punches are. He and I could probably pick most of them out just because we know the segments. To this day, he probably wasn't 100% satisfied.

Finally, my vocals could be recorded to tracks three and four. All the while, I had to sing the songs for cueing reasons due to no room to lay down scratch vocals and musicians who need to hear vocals so they know where they are in the song. Try doing this while trying to focus on recording someone. It's a trip. Recording my vocals was the easiest part of the sessions. If I could change one thing, I would get rid of that late '80's early 90's big reverb sound on my vox. But that is what almost everyone that I listened to was doing. I mixed down to this Teac 1/4" reel to reel which I had with this old Dolby device for noise suppression. We had fun that spring in 1990 making this recording. It's too bad Tom didn't put "Keep the Faith" and "Trendsetter" on this version. They were more poppy which isn't really my thing, but people really liked them and Todd's solo in Trendsetter, in my opinion, was the best on the CD. Tom mastered the transition to CD in 2007 and created the cover art work.

Jeffrey Harris

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