Even with an ocean between us, and a stay at home order, we can still groove together. Each musician – one live take!
NYC recording artist Valerie Ghent was scheduled to be in France in May and on tour there in July. As lockdown kept all musicians indoors, in early May Valerie and her bandmates in France, Jérôme Buigues, François Gomez and Fred ‘Diego’ Alfonsi, decided to make a live recording of one of their most popular tunes, Get Funkay. Recorded in the South of France and NYC, each musician recorded one live take, videoing at the same time.
Look closely and you can see the tracks are in record as Valerie sings and plays!
What do you do when you’re stuck in NYC and your band is in the South of France? “Make a live video!” Valerie exclaims with a smile. “We wanted to capture a real-time, live feel, no overdubs or punch-ins. It’s the way I make all my records, bringing great musicians together to record live. Though we couldn’t all be in the same room, or even same continent, we can still make music together! I was jumping around the house all day, playing with Fred, Jé and François was the most fun I’d had since being confined at home in early March.”
In April 2020, Jérôme started a video series of “Lockdown Sessions” with French musicians. Get Funkay is the first international video in the series. Get Funkay was written by Valerie and Jérôme a few years ago – and first released on Valerie’s album, Velours. It’s a fave at all their live concerts. “We wrote Get Funkay in about 20 minutes, the lyric/melody came to me while walking home one day, I heard this guitar riff in my head. When I got to France I sang it to Jé and he brought it to life!” Valerie explains.
“For this version, I was super excited that Fred could record drums at his home studio – Fred and I played together in Cannes, he’s great! – and François Gomez (bass) is the best, part of my band whenever I play in France. Jé surprised me by adding in the breakdown we play at concerts, and a killer guitar solo – and then sent the tracks to me in NYC to add vocals/keyboards in my home studio. What you see and hear is my first take! It felt like we were all together again. Keeping it live, fun, stripped down, and real. We hope this version of Get Funkay brings a smile and makes you wanna get up and move!”