This year we have been very busy recording Christmas CD’s in Primary schools all over the UK. One of the more complex recordings was at Leigh Primary School in Leigh, Kent. Well, I say complex, it just involved a considerable number of instrumentalists and soloists as well as the school choir and a recording of a few ‘whole school’ songs. This is fairly typical for most of our school recordings and we always encourage schools to get as much music and variety onto the CD as possible.
The recording at Leigh meant leaving our Bath studio around 5am, which by our standards is quite a civilised time, and afforded the opportunity to get some breakfast at Clacket Lane services on the M25. In this job, an early morning breakfast in a motorway service station is an important part of the day! Albeit not very stylish! We arrived as usual just before 7.30am and luckily on this occasion were able to park our van right outside the school hall to unload.
The sign requesting that you think carefully about where to park in fact had to be moved so our van could be accommodated outside the school hall. However, it was parked carefully and with full agreement of the school that it was in a safe location! This was handy because it meant the kit only had to be carried a few feet into the school hall which is pictured behind the van! This may seem a small detail but we have done recordings before where it is a 10 minute walk from the only available parking space to the location for the recording. When you have to make at least 20 trips from the van in order to unload all the kit, this can be quite time consuming!
The recording day started with the whole school in the hall to record 5 songs. After a short break we then recorded the choir which took up until lunchtime. I was very grateful to the Headteacher, Mr Daniel Eaton who kindly bought me a sandwich for lunch which was much appreciated. You would be surprised how many schools don’t even offer us a cup of coffee!
The afternoon session was all about recording soloists and instrumentalists. And what a variety we had. The afternoon started off with many recorders – some were playing solo, some with piano and finally a recorder medley. This was followed by a number of violins and several pianists. Later in the afternoon we were treated to an electric guitar, a saxophone and then right at the end of the day a girl playing the Harp which I think may have been a first in a Primary school. Clearly music plays an important part at Leigh Primary and we were very grateful for the opportunity to come in a record. The CD is currently in production and we really hope the pupils, parents and staff enjoy listening to it.