July 7, 2014 – FYI Music News – 5 Questions with…Chris Birkett
June, 2014 – Press Release announcing Chris Birkett recording fourth album with Buffy Sainte-Marie
Press release June 4th 2014:
Buffy Sainte Marie and Music producer Chris Birkett to record
Fourth album together in Toronto
Newly arrived and impressed with the Canadian music scene, Chris Birkett is putting down tracks with legendary singer songwriter Buffy Sainte Marie in Toronto this month. The songs form part of Buffy’s newest album on her new record label, True North Records. It is the fourth time Buffy has chosen to work with Chris as her record producer. The last time they worked together Buffy won a Juno award for her 2009 release “Running for the Drum.”
Quote from Buffy’s book It’s My Way about why she likes to work with Chris – Page 244-245:
“Chris is a master recordist, a great engineer, an emotional guitar and bass player, and a sensitive listener who hears my ideas and tries hard to capture what I do in demo mode. We like working together and that makes it wonderful”.
Buffy and Chris first met in 1990 at Ensign/Chrysalis records in London. Chris was asked to produce Buffy’s comeback album, Coincidence and Likely Stories based on his successful collaborations with female artists like Sinead O’Connor and Allison Moyet. Coincidence and Likely Stories raised interest in the press, not just because it was Buffy’s first release in 20 years, but because of the engineering feat it achieved.
With Buffy living in Hawaii and Chris in London, they wanted to reduce the need to travel between the two places. They turned to early Internet technology for a solution. Using CompuServe, the pre worldwide web file transfer system, Buffy sent her keyboard song files from her studio in Kauai to Chris’ London Studio. Chris then recorded the keyboard parts to 24-track tape in London. He took the tapes to Steely Dan’s studio in Hawaii to finish the recordings. They were the first on record to use this emerging technology for music. They continued to collaborate and innovate over the years working between Hawaii and Chris’ various studio locations in London, Bordeaux, Paris, and now Toronto.
Chris Birkett has been involved in producing, engineering, writing and playing music since the 1970s. His collaborations have sold more than 100 million records Worldwide over the last 30 years. Chris moved to Canada in October 2012, opening a recording studio in Toronto at Studio City, where he is producing and mixing Buffy’s latest album. His new album Be Creative is also being recorded at his Toronto studio and features an array of Canadian performances from musicians like Glen Milchem (Blue Rodeo) and Steve Bowen (Fiddlestix). Chris is excited by the talent in Toronto and is pleased to add Canadian artists to his list of collaborations that include: Led Zeppelin, Steve Earle, Quincy Jones, Peter Gabriel, Sting, Dexys Midnight Runners, Randy Newman, Def Leopard and many, many more.
— with Buffy Sainte-Marie.