Records with Sonobeat in 1971
No commercial releases on Sonobeat Records
It's February 1971 in Austin, Texas. For the past two years, flutist Don "Skipper" Young has headlined a house band at Club Caravan in the Villa Capri Hotel on South Congress Avenue in Austin; the band includes former Sweetarts' bassist Pat Whitefield, Austin guitar legend Jim Mings (a former member of New Atlantis), and drummer Jay Meade (also formerly of New Atlantis). Skipper's assembled quite a combo of top-tier Austin musicians. In fact, this is the third band in which Sonobeat records Pat Whitefield, first as a founding member of the Sweetarts, then with Fast Cotton, and now with Skipper. Skipper himself is no newcomer to the Austin music scene; only a few years earlier, he's a member of the University of Texas Experimental Jazz Ensemble, playing not just flute but also sax, clarinet, vibraphone, and piano. And, at the same time, he leads Austin-based jazz band The Quintessence, in which Jim Mings also is a member.
February 1971 is busy for Sonobeat co-founder Bill Josey Sr. Skipper's is the third session Bill records this month. The session is on Valentine's Day at Sonobeat's Western Hills Drive studio in northwest Austin. The Sonobeat archives hold a lone half-inch 4-track reel from the session, and that reel contains three different cuts of the same unidentified song. The tape box is marked with only a piece of masking tape on which Bill has written the name "Skipper Young" and "2-14-71"; there are no other session notes. Although there are several takes of the same song on the master tape, only one represents a completed version with vocals. The session features Skipper, Jim, Pat, and Jay, as well as Jim Mings' sister Martha on keyboard. Jim sings lead and Martha sings harmony.
There are no stereo mixes of Skipper's material in the Sonobeat archives, so the sound bite we present here is a quick mix we've made from the half-inch 4-track session master.
Jay Meade: drums
Jim Mings: guitar and lead vocals
Martha Mings: keyboard and harmony vocals
Pat Whitefield: bass
Don "Skipper" Young: flute
Recorded at Sonobeat's Western Hills Drive studios, Austin, Texas, on February 14, 1971
Recording equipment: Sony ECM22 electret condenser microphones, Scully 280 half-inch 4-track tape deck, Stemco half-inch 4-track tape deck, custom 16-channel 4-bus mixing console, Fairchild Lumiten 663ST optical compressor, Blonder-Tongue Audio Baton 9-band stereo graphic equalizer, custom steel plate stereo reverb, Ampex 681 tape stock