Let the song lead the way
Ted has produced or co-produced more than 15 CDs for other artists as well as his own albums. He now works mainly out of his home studio, The Den, but has produced and put together sessions all around L.A., New York, Texas, Nashville and even in Europe.
“Making a record is an amazing process that I love. It’s a subtle blend of helping the artist say what they want to say, capturing what they do best and helping make the best record possible. We often become friends in the process too. Each album is a totally unique experience, involving songwriting, playing, arranging, engineering, mixing, emotional support and often combinations of all of these. I’ve worked in several genres (rock, singer-songwriter, Americana, country, blues and jazz) and it’s all about keeping things simple and soulful and letting the song lead us where it wants to go.”
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Richie Allbright – Poets, Prophets, Heroes and Friends (2016)
Richie is a truly talented classic country singer and songwriter from the Corpus Christi area. Richie wanted to make an album of classic honky tonk music in the style of his heroes Merle Haggard, Johnny Paycheck, Johnny Rodriguez and Waylon Jennings. We chose 8 classic songs that were all B sides and album tracks and Richie write 4 songs of the 12. We recorded the record over the course of a week in L.A. doing the basic band tracks with Mark Rains at the Station House in Echo Park and then did the rest of the acoustic songs and overdubs at my studio, The Den. Some of the players include John Schreffler on guitar and pedal steel, Dale Daniels and Jim Doyle on drums, Carl Byron of keys and DB Berzanski on pedal steel. We wanted the recording to be analog and old school but still modern and full sounding. The songs featured here are “Old Country Song” written by Billy Don Burns and Richie’s “Stronger Than Me.”
Robin Wiley – Texicali (2016)
Robin Wiley is a real deal singer/songwriter and Texas native who was living in L.A. when we first met. Robin, now living back in Austin, wanted to make an EP that would capture the energy of her live show, musically bring her back to her Texas roots and combine country, soul and classic rock and roll. Some of these songs are co-writes with me and Robin and her sister Heather and some of the songs I had written on my own or with Nashvillian’s Greg Crowe and Angeleena Presley (of the Pistol Annies). We did most of the basic tracking in Austin with John Chipman on drums, Phil Hurley and Michael O’Connor on guitar and Derek Morris on keys then brought the files back to L.A. to finish in the Den. We also brought in L.A. session ace Dave Raven to play on two songs and went to Mark Rains at the Station House in Echo Park, CA to mix. The two songs featured here are the Motown inspired “Make You Love Me Too” and “Look What I Got Myself Into”.
Rayna Day – Rayna Is Her Name (2016)
Rayna approached me about doing an EP of traditional vocal jazz in the style of Julie London, one of the great jazz singers of all time who we both loved. We decided to keep it an intimate trio record featuring Rayna on vocals, me on acoustic bass and Peter Kavanaugh on electric guitar. We chose songs from the great American songbook as well as “A Dream is a Wish Your Heart Makes” which is a beautiful ballad in the style of an old standard from Cinderella. We also added at the last minute an old Mormon children’s song from Rayna’s upbringing “Popcorn Popping” and gave it a great bass and vocals Andrew Sisters spin. I did the arranging and made the charts, we cut the whole EP in a day with an extra day for some vocal overdubs. The focus was to keep things simple and classic and never get in the way of Rayna’s beautiful voice. I engineered the sessions in The Den and we then brought in Kyle Mann to help with overdubs, mix and master. The two songs featured here are “Cry Me A River” and “Blue Moon Of Kentucky”.
Van Norden – The Space Between (2016)
Van Norden is a wonderfully talented singer songwriter and acoustic guitarist who met Ted in L.A. in 2014. After a year of playing together as a trio with Aubrey Richmond on violin and vocals, Walter Van Norden approached Ted about helping to arrange and produce his record. All of the basic tracking and most of the overdubbing were done
at the Den with Ted engineering. The final vocals and mix were done with Sheldon Zaharko in British Columbia which is Van Norden’s home base. The core musicians on the record are Ted (acoustic and electric bass, keyboards and harmony vocals), Aubrey Richmond (vocals and violin), Jim Doyle (drums) with guests John Ellis (guitar), Eric Heywood (pedal steel) and Craig Zurba (keyboards). The two songs featured here are “First” and “You’re Still Asleep” with Aubrey Richmond on lead vocals.
AJ Hobbs – The Den Sessions (2016)
AJ Hobbs is a country singer and songwriter based out of Los Angeles, CA whose music has a heavy Outlaw and 70as country influence. The goal was to record a down and dirty EP in Ted’s home studio, The Den, which would capture the energy of the AJ Hobbs live show. It was cut mostly live with some vocal and percussion overdubs. Ted and AJ worked on the songs and arrangements together, then recorded the EP in one long and beautiful day in the Den. The musicians are AJ (vocals and acoustic guitar), Storm Rhode (electric guitar), Matt Lesser (drums and percussion), Ted (bass and arrangements). Mixing was done by Eric Rennaker at Bedrock Studio. Here are the Western Swing tune “Are You Going To Tennessee?” and the Outlaw “Life Without You”.
Nate Smith – Around and Around (2015)
Nate Smith is a rootsy and very artistic rock and roll singer and song writer. He approached Ted about producing his record to help him arrange his music and help it come to life. The sounds on the record range from old school acoustic folk to arty and distorted Crazy Horse style rock to dreamy ballads. Nates beautiful songs and soulful voice really shine on this album. The band on the record is Ted (bass, guitar, keyboards, harmonies), Storm Rhode (electric guitar), Aubrey Richmond (violin, vocals), Jamie Douglas (drums and percussion) and John Schreffler (pedal steel). The basic tracking sessions and final mixing were done with Mark Rains at The Station House in Echo Park, CA. The rest of recording and preliminary mixing were done at The Den. Here are the dreamy ballad “Moon at the Horizon” and the rocker “Christmas Day”.
Creekwood – 2000 Miles West (2015)
Creekwood is a band based out of Orange County, CA. The goal of the record was to combine their love of classic California Country and Bluegrass with great songwriting. We deliberately kept things acoustic with minimal extra instrumentation added to feature the intimacy and power of their performances and songwriting. The members of the band are Andrew McBride (vocals/guitar), Cooper Nelson (banjo), Levi Duren (drums/vocals), Mathais Chavez (violin). The album was almost entirely tracked at Ted’s studio, The Den, with Ted engineering, playing bass and making production and arrangement comments along the way. It’s a great, musical and soulful record. Here are “Juliana” and Tumbleweeds and Dust”.
Funkyjenn - Sing To The Angels (2014)
Funkyjenn (Jennifer Gibbons of L.A.) approached Ted to make a Christmas EP featuring a handful of her originals and a few she co-wrote with Ted over the past few years. We wanted to capture Jennifer’s powerful voice and eclectic loves in music. There is a classic gospel style tune, a sleigh bell fueled radio ready pop Christmas song, a classic 60′s soul song and a classical recording of Oh Holy Night featuring the operatic soprano Jennifer’s mother, Ludmilla Gibbons. Christmas music can rock. Here is the jazzy “Christmas Means I Love You” and the gospel “Sing To The Angels”.
Funkyjenn – Rock and Roll Voodoo Queeen (2013)
Funkyjenn, aka Jennifer Gibbons wanted to write and record to capture the sounds of her funky and rocking live show. The record was recorded at the Station House with engineer Mark Rains and it is mixture of Funkyjenn’s classic 60′s and 70′s rock influences like Delaney and Bonnie, classic Tina Turner and Joe Cocker’s Mad Dogs and Englishmen. The EP has been getting steady airplay around the world in the last year.Here is the ballad Butterflies Bleed and the funk rock song that I co-wrote its Jenn and John Schreffler “Boom Boom”.
Granville Automatic – Granville Automatic (2012)
Granville Automatic is Vanessa Olivirez and Elizabeth Elkins out of Nashville and Atlanta. They have been very successful songwriters and artists touring the US and have become staples of the songwriter festivals in the last 5 years. They came to Ted having made a record in Nashville that felt too impersonal and overproduced. Our goal was to make a recording that had elements of classic California Country and would highlight their subtle songwriting. The album was recorded mostly in L.A. at the Station House with engineer Mark Rains but also partially in Nashville. Included here is “Never On A Sunday” which has also aired on CMT and “Comanche”.
29 Mules – 29 Mules (2012)
The 29 Mules is Casey Cannon and Xavier Gonzales. They have been performing regularly around L.A. for most of the new milleniumn. They are a rocking country band that came to Ted to produce their 3rd album. It is a great blend of their love of classic and Outlaw country and old school rock and roll. The sessions were done in various studios in and around L.A. The record has gotten rave reviews and has gotten great support from SiriusXM radio. Here are “Lonesome Cowboy” and “God Bless Johnny Cash”.
Matt Mason – Eye on the Prize (2011)
Matt Mason is a great singer/songwriter and guitarist from Claremore OK. The basic tracks for the record were recorded at a few different studios in North Texas and Oklahoma and it was finished at Modern Sound Recorders in Denton. Matt had been in a great hard rock band called Hurricane mason for many years. We wanted to feature his growth as a writer, singer and player by having moments of his classic rock background as well as his love of country (the Gram parsons cover ‘She’) and wonderfully fluid and soulful acoustic playing too. Here are “Get Out of The City” and “Killing Machine”.
Cliff Beach – 6 Pack (2011)
Cliff is a great old school country singer and songwriter from Roanoke, VA. Cliff and Ted met on the road doing shows. The goal of the record was to capture Cliff’s love of Kris Kristofferson, and the Outlaw movement of country music. The basic tracks were recorded at 16 Tons Studios in Nashville with a crackpot group of Ted’s friends and session musicians: Michael Webb on keyboards, Jerry Roe on drums, Nick Nguyen on guitars. Here are “You Ain’t Heard It All” and “So Blessed Easy”.
Shy Blakeman – Long Distanced Man (2010)
Ted and Shy connected when the were both guests on a live radio show in Fort Worth, TX. They became fast friends. When it was time for Shy to record his next record, he came to Ted to help him create a record that would combine the sounds and energies of Texas, California and Nashville. It is a rocking full band record with Marc Ford, Kenny Vaughan and Doug Pettibone on lead guitar, Jason Sutter on drums and Ron Dziubla and Ted on horns. Here are “Swamp Water Whiskey” and Rusty Wier’s “Don’t It Make You Want to Dance” featuring Marc Ford on slide guitar.
Production notes for Ted Russell Kamp albums:
Flying Solo is the acoustic guitar oriented companion piece to Low and Lonesome Sound. It captures the energy of Ted’s live shows when he tours a solo singer/songwriter around the US and in Europe. 3 songs were recorded at a solo show in Helsinki, Finland (two of these were solo mandolin and vocals). 3 songs were recorded live on radio shows around the US (one on WDVX in Knoxville, one at KNBT in New Braunfels, TX, and one in Nashville). The other six were recorded at Ted’s home studio in L.A., The Den. It includes co-writes Kirsten Proffit of Calico, Tony Scalzo of Fastball, Gordy Quist of the Band of Heathens and Nashville hit songwriter Chris Tompkins. One of the live-in-Finland songs is a solo mandolin version of the Steady At The Wheel which Ted wrote when he was playing with Shooter Jennings. It was the #1 song on Texas radio for 6 weeks.
This is a record featuring Ted’s unaccompanied bass and vocal performances, something Ted has been doing in his solo shows for the last few years. The EP has 3 songs that were recorded live on tour in 2014 in the Netherlands at Crossroads Radio, a great concert that is broadcast live on Dutch National Radio. The rest of the songs still retain the minimalist bass-oriented approach but feature special guests including violin, percussion and Ted on trumpet and dobro. The EP also includes a cover of the Townes Van Zandt song ‘Tecumseh Valley’.
Night Owl reached #34 on the Americana Radio Chart and #15 on the Euroamericana Chart. It is an album filled with story songs, soulful and honest acoustic tracks and moody full band arrangements. It is more of a late night relaxing listen than many of Ted’s other records. Compiled from recording sessions in L.A., Nashville and Tulsa, it is cinematic and moody and has the heart of a singer-songwriter record. Special guests include Michael Webb (Bobby Keys, John Fogerty), Brian Whelan (Dwight Yoakam), Chuck Blackwell (Leon Russell, Taj Mahal), Jerry Roe (k.d. lang, Gretchen Wilson), Tommi Viksten (the Munsons). Some of the songs were co-written with Charlie Starr (Blackberry Smoke), Will Hoge, Katy Moffatt, and Eric Paslay. Obladoo (Sweden) wrote “Songwriters like Ted Russell Kamp … seem to simply pick the songs from the sky … (they) are all that they want to say, neat, beautiful and without frills. He moves in the same league as the big names, Bruce Springsteen, Fleetwood Mac and Kris Kristofferson. His voice is something out of the ordinary … world class.”
Released early 2011 and debuting at #1 on the Euroamericana Radio Chart, this album was recorded at Hollywood Sound and on the road, Get back To The Land is an homage to guitar driven California Country and country-rock of Buck Owens and the Byrds as well as Ted’s other influences of Southern fried Rock and Soul. With special guests Angelo Moore (Fishbone), Eric Heywood (Son Volt, Ray LaMontagne), Tony Gilkyson (Lone Justice, X) and Robby Turner (Waylon Jennings and the Highwaymen). Music News Nashville wrote “the Laurel Canyon mythos rings true throughout this Americana set. This is definitely California desert country with the top down. With his gritty self styled voice. Like Bob Dylan’s Nashville recordings (or the) soulful country tracks that came out of Muscle Shoals. Ted Russell Kamp pays tribute to a lot of American music heroes (while) weaving gravitas throughout this song cycle.”
Recorded in Ted’s living room and countless hotel rooms while Ted was touring with Shooter Jennings, this album combines Ted’s love of songwriting with classic Americana and really lets his soul music influences shine through. It made the top 20 of the Americana Chart and was named on of the 100 best Americana Records of the year. No Depression called it “terrific. Ted is a star on the rise…in the tradition of great troubadours like Guy Clark… an impressive record.” Guests include Kenny Vaughan, Michael Webb, Robby Turner, Jason Sutter, Eric Heywood and Brian Whelan.
This was the first record that helped put Ted on the map as touring artist. It reached #11 on the Americana Radio Chart and was one of the top 100 Americana records of the year. The songs capture the influence of classic Texas Songwriters like Guy Clark and Rodney Crowell, There are also guest appearances by Shooter jennings and Jessi Colter. The Big Takeover wrote, “If only Nashville was pumping out country songs with that kind of understated pathos … another fine set of melodic country rock tunes on Night Owl. infused with warm soul … with a grace and plainspoken honesty. Modesty and an unwillingness to play games likely prevent Kamp from getting the acclaim he deserves.”
A collection of songs written in Nashville and for Nasville Country artists. This record features co-writes with hit songwriters Trent Summar, Jim Beavers, Christian Kane and Dylan Altman. Many of the songs were recorded in the sessions for Divisadero.
Ted’s first record in the singer/songwriter tradition. Inspired by the Band and Bob Dylan, it has the original version of ‘Steady At The Wheel’ which became a #1 song on Texas radio for Shooter Jennings. The record was recorded at Hollywood Sound with engineer Mark Rains and Shag Studios with engineer Corey Gash. It featured Ted’s L.A. band Union Pacific: Gene Edwards and Leroy Powell on guitar, Eric Heywood on pedal steel, Robin Wiley on harmony vocals and Mike Sessa on drums. There is also a guest appearance by Shooter Jennings.
Dedications was Ted’s first record: an all instrumental jazz album. Ted recorded it at the ripe old age of 24 when he was playing jazz for a living (just as he was discovering roots music). This record is an homage to the American jazz and blues of the ’50′s and ’60′s. Inspired by Bill Evans, Gerry Mulligan, and ‘Kind of Blue’ era Miles Davis, this CD is comprised mostly of original compositions, but also has a few standards arranged by Ted. The band is comprised of many of the most respected younger professional jazz players in Seattle: Gary Fukushima on piano, Rob Davis on tenor sax, Mark Taylor on alto sax, Steve Korn and Mark Yeend on drums.
Ted co-led a band from 1997-2002 with violinist Chris Murphy. In the process we toured all over the US time and again and recorded 4 records: Down Like Mercury, Cotton Diesel, The Escape Artist and Dark Skies.