Some songs are written in a matter of minutes. Some songs take days. And others evolve over time. Such is the case with our tune “Ask The Man”.
Ask The Man was written in the early 1990’s and originally performed by a band named “M.U.I.”. The song certainly has a political theme and a bit harder edge. But the song was not the best fit for the type of music MUI was performing at the time and it was never recorded.
MUI parted ways in 1994 but Bill McCarthy and Jim Hansbauer continued recording music together. Nearly all of the recordings were taking place at The Recording Workshop in Chillicothe Ohio. Dave Voight was an instructor at the Workshop and ran student recording sessions where bands were needed. Jim and Bill took every recording opportunity that Dave gave them. From 1993 to 1996, they recorded just under 20 tracks.
One of the Recording Workshop sessions was the recording of Ask The Man. The session started with Jim and Bill recording guitar and drums respectively. Then, track by track, Jim and Bill recorded the rest of the instruments and vocals. All recordings happening live in the studio in one night.
Fast forward to 2020 with Jim Hansbauer, Ben Lindenberger and Chad Wieland recording the song using today’s digital technology. The structure of the song was edited and the lyrics were also modified from the original version. The tune was recorded digitally using a digital audio workstation (DAW) called Reaper. The recording took place over several session and in multiple locations. One interesting location was a large warehouse that was converted into a temporary recording studio. The main guitar tracks took advantage of the large room to capture some natural room reverberations.
After all the basic tracks were recorded, the tracks were sent to Dave Voight for mixing and polishing (done in ProTools). And 26 years later, Dave worked on the same song using his own recording studio. Samples of the tune “then and now” are below:
THEN: Here is a short sample of the tune recorded in 1994
NOW: Here is a short sample of the tune recorded in 2020
The newly recorded (and released) version of the song is available for purchase anywhere you purchase music. It is also available on all streaming services. Lastly, you can stream the song free on SoundCloud.
If you are interested in contacting The Recording Workshop, click here.