Posted tagged ‘Cilla Black’


September 2, 2011

TCM Music Group’s Ted Carfrae Talks About Producing On Doris Day’s Album ‘My Heart’.

Doris Day’s Latest Album ‘My Heart’.

Multi Platinum Producer, Ted Carfrae of TCM Music Group talks about producing on Doris Day’s latest album ‘My Heart’ in this recent interview for the longest running Doris Day website – Discovering Doris. Ted also gives a track by track appraisal.

The album is already generating a huge amount of interest. So if you’re interested in Doris Day, you need to check out the interview.

The album is due for release in the UK September 5th 2011 by Sony Music UK. The CD can be purchased at Amazon UK and on import.

Over his long and successful career, Ted has worked with some of the biggest music artists in the business. Everyone from Kiki Dee and Cilla Black to David Cassidy, Soul Queen Jaki Graham to Sheena Easton and Classical Superstar Katherine Jenkins.

In the last few years Ted has taken great satisfaction in helping up and coming artists like Ray Prim, Robert Gillies, Texas Rap Artist SES, 7th Heaven, Klubkidz and CYLiX.

Through TCM Mastering and the TCM Music Group, along with his partner in Nashville – CJ Boggs – many new artists have benefitted from the professional, fast and affordable services they provide.

So if you need some music advice, help with production, recording, mixing or mastering, drop them a line or call them to discover some of the great deals on offer at the moment.

Latest TCM Mastering News:

TCM Mastering’s Ted Carfrae has just mastered James Scott’s album ‘Letters from Sonora’. An album of great acoustic guitar work. James Scott is a solo finger-style steel string guitarist.



August 26, 2011

Ted Carfrae, My Life In Music: The Planning & Recording of Cilla Black’s Beginnings Revisited Album Part 2

Ted Carfrae continues…..

I was very excited to have a new Bacharach/David song on the album, it was written for a musical but at that time had not been recorded by anyone. I remember that I was at home working on arrangement ideas or something and the phone rang, I picked it up and this voice said, ‘Is that Ted?’, I said ‘Yes it is’, and he said ‘This is Burt Bacharach here’, I was stunned for a few seconds and after my initial shock, we started to chat about music and eventually the song and he said he was delighted that Cilla was going to record it as he’s always known her to be a fine vocalist.

Burt Bacharach, George Martin & Cilla.

He said he was going to fax over all the chord charts for me so that I could make sure that when we record all the chords were right. I said, ‘That’s great’, and with that the call ended. That was a ‘You won’t guess what just happened to me’, moment. It’s actually quite funny because by the time Burt called, we had already started recording and his song was done so I never got to refer to his chord charts but gladly it all turned out as it was supposed to.

I decided that we wanted to record the old fashioned way with everyone in the studio together. I wanted these new songs to sit perfectly alongside the hits so I decided to record through a Neve analogue desk onto my Radar 1 24 track recorder. The Radar 1 is an amazing recorder because even though it is a digital recorder it sounded very warm like tape and you could really push the level without distortion.

Recording commenced at Westside Studios in June of 2004 and we completed recording all the basic tracks within four days. I remember Cilla sang guide vocals on all the songs in 90 degrees of heat and she never once complained – she was really amazing to work with. I brought in my usual amazing rhythm section – Ralph Salmins on drums, Steve Pearce on bass, Pete Murray and Dave Arch on piano and keys and Fridrick ‘Frissy’ Karlsson and the legendary Mick Green on lead acoustic and rhythm guitars. We then overdubbed strings and brass and my musical arranger Dave Arch did a fantastic job on the arrangements.

Cilla, Ted Carfrae & Chris West.

We recorded all the vocals at my friend Terry Britten’s private studio ‘State Of The Ark’ in Richmond, Surrey. Terry has written and produced huge hits such as ‘What’s Love Got To Do With It?’ for Tina Turner and of course Cliff Richard’s monster hit, ‘Devil Woman’. I had recorded at Terry’s studio before two years earlier when I recorded some of David Cassidy’s vocals for the  ‘Then & Now’ album and I decided to return for one very special reason.

Ted At State Of The Ark Studios.

Terry’s studio has an original EMI 1,2,3,4 valve console installed – it has sliders rather than faders and the sound is amazing. In fact it was the same desk that the Stones recorded all their sixties albums on. Terry found the console in bits in a barn in France, brought it back to the UK and restored it to its former glory. Everything you push through the desk sounds rich and fat – truly amazing and usually very little EQ is needed.

Recording vocals on my albums is always a closed set with nobody around except myself, the artist and my sound engineer and in my experience, artists prefer to sing without distractions enabling them to concentrate instead on the performance, Cilla really enjoyed working this way I know.

I would collect Cilla from her house in Buckinghamshire at 3pm and bring her to the studio. There was always a bottle of Moet in the refrigerator and we would work through until the early hours.  I remember she was just amazing every day, her phrasing was precise, she was perfectly in tune and she was naturally instinctive completing her vocals on all eleven songs in just five days.

Cilla Black – Beginnings Revisited.

Another special moment was working with Sir Cliff Richard. Cliff had agreed to sing some backing vocals on ‘Imagine’ for me, so when he arrived at the studio I was eager to see what he would come up with.

We played the song through and he and I sang along to see what would and would not work. He had listened to the song earlier and came up with some great ideas and as you would expect, recording with Sir Cliff was a breeze. Chris and I were really impressed with his performance which was done in no time, it was another one of those pinch me moments.

The album was released in September of 2004 and though it did not set the world alight, for me it was a fantastic album to work on for so many reasons and a real highlight of my career. Click here for Cill’s site.


August 19, 2011

Ted Carfrae, My Life In Music: The Planning & Recording of Cilla Black’s Beginnings Revisited Album Part 1

TCM Group’s Ted Carfrae writes…..’I have been very fortunate to work with many great musicians over the years. Cilla was most definitely a highlight. A true pro.’

When I was asked by Steve Davis and Robert Willis to make this album there was a mixture of feelings. I knew Cilla Black was a great singer, a British institution, but I also knew that she hadn’t recorded an album for many years, so my first thought was…’Can she still deliver?’ Well, I need not have worried because during the making of this album, I knew I was in the presence of a brilliant artist.

Ted Carfrae & Cilla Black.

Choosing the material was a wonderful time of nostalgia and discovery, as I would meet Cilla at her London flat and we would listen to hundreds of CD’s. Motown, Northern Soul, The Eagles, absolutely nothing was out of bounds, and Cilla would sing along with virtually every song at full power. Any worries I might have had previously about the quality of her voice, very quickly turned to delight as she belted out song after song.

What was really interesting I remember is that she made every song her own, she added her little touches here and there that made it unmistakably Cilla Black, so even then at that early stage she was working out what she was going to do, the consummate professional  and  it was very impressive indeed.

It became apparent very early on that Cilla did not want to make another covers album so this time we decided to make it relevant to her life. We talked for hours and played songs and very quickly there were certain songs that we both decided we had to record.

Paul, John & Cilla.

We talked a lot about her early club work and the material she chose to sing and clearly she was and is clearly still a Rock n Roll singer at heart. She was excited about making a new album that was different in many ways from anything she had recorded before and she wanted to stretch herself as an artist and the sheer passion for music was evident from the outset.

The album concept was essentially a Greatest Hits package and I was going to record just three or four new songs that had to compliment the collection. Before long we came up with two songs in particular that she felt she must record for personal reasons.

The first was John Lennon’s classic ‘Imagine’. At first when we started to seriously discuss the idea, she was a little afraid to tackle it because it is such an iconic song, but if there was anyone who had the right to record it, it was Cilla purely because of her very close connection to John. After all, it was John Lennon who championed her and persuaded Brian Epstein to go and see her live and of course the rest is history.

Ringo & Cilla 1968.

The second song was ‘Photograph’ , a massive hit for Ringo Starr back in 1973. Cilla told me how George Harrison actually wrote the song for her and for whatever reason she never got around to recording it. Once again there was a very real connection that meant we had to include it on the album.

Cilla’s friend Dale Winton found two songs that went on the album, the first song ‘Beautiful Goodbye’ was a country Number 1 record for a Nashville artist that year called Jennifer Hanson. Both Cilla and I loved it so much we had to record it.  The second song was a dance version of the classic ‘If You Could Read My Mind’ and we both really liked the way she sounded singing along with it. It was a great arrangement but I needed to work on how I was going to make it more acoustic for the album.

Two songs that I found were both quite obscure, I guess. The first was a song I have always loved called ‘Kiss You All Over’, it was a hit for Millie Jackson in 1985 but I first heard it by a band called Exile back in the seventies. The second was an album track on a solo Martha Reeves album called My Man (You’ve Changed My Tune).

Cilla Recording ‘Alfie’ At Abbey Road.

When I first heard the song I thought it was perfect for Cilla because I knew she had a three octave range. Cilla really liked the challenge of singing it and because it was so different, she agreed to give it a go. As the song selection process went on, it became apparent that we were going to record more than four or five songs, in fact we ended up with eleven which was fantastic. The final song we found was a new Burt Bacharach song called ‘Beginnings’ and of course Burt’s connection with Cilla goes back to 1968 when he recorded ‘Alfie’ with her.

Part 2…..continues next Friday.


May 20, 2011

Professional, Fast and Affordable Mastering at TCM Mastering

Do you want your music to stand out from the crowd?

Many musicians attempt to master their own music tracks. Some succeed in getting great results. However, many end up with a final mastered track or collection of tracks that lack punch, clarity and definition.

The problem is…’s very difficult to be objective about your own music which you’ve spent days, weeks or months writing, recording and mixing. And then finally master it for the world to hear and judge.

Ted Carfrae and CJ Boggs at TCM Mastering have been writing, producing, recording, mixing and mastering music for decades.

Despite having years of experience working with EMI, Sony Music, Universal Music and everyone from Katherine Jenkins, David Cassidy, Jaki Graham to Cilla Black, Ted still seeks out another mastering engineer for his own projects because he values a fresh pair of experienced ears.

Ted Carfrae of TCM Mastering explains the importance of getting your music mastered by a professional.

Fronted by top record producers and engineers Ted Carfrae and CJ Boggs, with worldwide sales exceeding 25 million, the TCM Music Group understands what musicians want and can deliver services quickly, efficiently and at a rate to suit every pocket.