Making of The UPRIGHT CITIZEN

The musicians behind the music

It has taken me a long time to decide to eventually make this recording after first recording in 2001 and spending just as many years writing. Somewhere in the middle of 2015 someone said to me quite incidentally “Marc, it’s better to live with regrets for the things that you have done, than the things you haven’t”.

That was the beginning.

In late 2015 I asked my friend, Amanda Tiffin if she would produce this recording which she accepted to my great excitement. Amanda is one of those rare people who as a singer, composer, jazz vocal teacher, musical director and arranger can do it all and with consummate ease to boot, so having her on board as my producer was a ‘no-brainer’.
 
We spent the first 6 to 8 months sifting through what was then a very large repertoire to decide which would make the eventual cut for the album. I made my selection and Amanda in her kind but incisive way dumped what she thought was ‘not my best work’, helped me pick the winners and sent me back to the ‘upright’ to do some re-writes of older material and also to tackle new compositions, like Like A Girl for this recording.

We also took our first stab at a co-write (our first) of another new composition on the Motown-esque, Do What You Say. Once the song selections and compositions were done, we finalized arrangements and started recording with engineer and studio owner, Paris Zannos, at Paris Studios in Cape Town in September 2016.

One of the many advantages of working with Amanda was having access to top drawer musicians and over the next ten sessions we collaborated with Cape Town’s best to complete all the instrumental tracks.

CORE MUSICIANS

Producer / Arranger / Piano

AMANDA TIFFIN

Drums / Percussion

KEVIN GIBSON

Guitar

DAVE LEDBETTER

Bass

SHAUN JOHANNES

Kevin Gibson and Shaun Johannes kicked off the star-studded cast on day 1 and 2 with drums, percussion and bass each adding their individual brilliance to the project.

Dave Ledbetter to follow in similar style on day 3 adding signature seasonings to Do What You Say, the light bossa Running Away and the afropop, Never Forget.

Marc de Kock opened for the brass with saxophone solos on Ready or Not, Do What You Say and Beautiful, Broken and with a flute on Running Away.

Strings followed with Farida Bacharova on first violin, Sangwoo Jun on second violin, Paula Gabriels on Viola and Kristiyan Chernev on cello. All featured on Someone Leaves The Room, So It Goes and Burned which Kristiyan opens with a haunting cello solo.

Farida Bacharova is featured on Storybook together with classical flautist, Bridget Rennie-Salonen, an arresting instrumental duo.

All the piano recording was done at UCT Colleges of Music performed by Amanda and engineered by Bubele Booi.
 

Finally the horns brought it all home with Dan Shout on section tenor saxophone, Marco Maritz on trumpet and William Haubrich on trombone on Do What You Say and Ready or Not. 

Of course, I did a little singing on the way recorded on a vintage Neuman M 269 C – delicious.

BRASS, HORNS & STRINGS

MARC DE KOCK

Sax & Flute

DAN SHOUT

Tenor Sax

BRIDGET RENNIE-SALONEN
Flute

MARCO MARITZ

Trumpet

WILLIAM HAUBRICH

Trombone

FARIDA BACHAROVA

First Violin

SANGWOO JUN

Second Violin

PAULA GABRIELS

Viola

KRISTIYAN CHERNEV

Cello

PARIS ZANNOS

Studio Engineer