Shane Speal is blogging about each day of the Shane Speal's Snake Oil Band recording sessions.  The album will be released on C. B. Gitty Records in May 2014.


Day One - Load in and tracking How Long Will You Make Me Suffer and Strung Out Drunk and Busted

Equinox Music and Arts, Dallastown PA

Gear used:

  • Shane Speal foot stomper
  • Daddy Mojo 5-string Dolorosa cigar box guitar
  • Darren Brown 3-string DBCustom cigar box guitar
  • Musicvox MVX-15 Spaceranger Amplifier.  (15 watts, all tube)


Well, it's finally happening!  Today was the first day of recording.  That means lots of loading in, catching up with studio owners (and good friends) Timothy Renner and Don Belch, discussions about the overall album concept and more. 

The three of us spent a good portion of the morning discussion the overall concept of the album.  Instead of just capturing the Snake Oil Band's live show, we're going to create something even more incredible: a stomp rock Sgt. Peppers.  Elements of slave/prison field hollers, Delta blues, crankin' rock and more will be added to the gumbo.  I'll cover that in future blogs...


Although Shane Speal's Snake Oil Band is a four-piece band, I started the sessions recording alone today.  The plan is to record all my stomping, guitar and vocals first and then bring in the other band members to add their tracks in subsequent sessions.  I laid down "scratch tracks" for How Long Will You Make Me Suffer and the foot stomper track for Strung Out Drunk and Busted. Here's a quick vid of the stomp:

As with any recording session, there were frustrating times where multiple takes were totally scrapped and we went back to square one.  This is to be expected.



I attempted to record Judy Gotta Booty with my Tomi-O 3-string cigar box guitar, but the studio and lights caused major buzzing in the single coil pickups.  We spent a good half hour on testing amps, cables, stomp boxes to try and find the culprit.  In the end, it was just the pickups.  In order for me to play songs on certain cigar box guitars, I need to modify them for the sessions.


Luckily, Dan Sleep of Humidor Guitars ( just sent me two samples of his humbucking "FlatPups" pickups.  These pickups are very shallow and easy to mount on a cigar box guitar top.  Tonight, I simply duct taped the FlatPups to my two cigar box guitars that have single coil pickups.  It ain't pretty, but these instruments will be ready to go for tomorrow's sessions.

It's been a long day.  Scroll way down for more pics from today's sessions and check back tomorrow night for the next report.


Stay primal,

Shane Speal



Duct taping the FlatPup onto my 3-string cigar box guitar.  I'll use this in tomorrow's sessions.

Just some of the instruments brought in for these sessions.  A whole gaggle of cigar box guitars along with some of my Musicvox guitars and a Danelectro Wild Thing bass.  Although the album will be cigar box guitar, washboard and harmonica, I'll still need a few "normal" guitars to round out the sounds in a few places.

Don Belch and Tim Renner getting things set up.  This room shall host the boogie for the next 6 weeks...

The "King's Throne".  LOL   This is where I sit and track. Vocals, guitar and foot stomper are recorded all at one time.   


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Comment by Kevin Sprague (Knotlenny) on March 19, 2014 at 10:01pm

Living the CBG dream!  Enjoy every minute you can, brother - tomorrow we die.

Comment by the anonymous pick on March 18, 2014 at 2:02pm

hella cool  ...  and so  it  begins   :-D

Comment by Matthew Borczon on March 18, 2014 at 1:34pm

I like it a lot, but do not loose that excitement you bring to a live show in too many layers of sound. The great thing about your playing is its kind of like going 90 miles an hour downhill and then throwing the steering wheel out the window. Try to keep that thrill level in your recording. I am glad you sing play and stomp all at once that should help keep it all real!! Good luck

Comment by Ben "C. B. Gitty" Baker on March 18, 2014 at 8:06am

Looks like a great start!

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