Number One (Giant Tracks)

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Number One is a song on the tribute album Giant Tracks.


Recorded at: Wunga-Wunga-Wunga-Wunga-Wunga Studios, Amherst, MA

The inside story

I'd always thought that "Number One" was a cool song, but a bit too plain in its original form. For Giant Tracks, I decided to lighten the texture with synthesizers and create some new instrumental parts reminiscent of older Gentle Giant material, while retaining the song's overall structure. Many pieces on Civilian (an underrated album, in my opinion) have interesting counterpoint buried underneath the rock beats, and I've tried to bring it to the forefront in my version.


The music was played on 2 synthesizers (Oberheim Matrix-12 and Yamaha TX81Z), a digital piano (Ensoniq SDP-1), and sampled drums (Boss DR-660). All the instruments were played live, including the drum machine, and the results were edited with the MIDI sequencer "Music-X" on a Commodore Amiga 3000T computer. The vocals were recorded on a 4-track cassette deck, which was synchronized with the sequencer, and the results were recorded directly to DAT. So the instrumentals remained in the digital domain, while the vocals spent one generation on cassette tape.