‘It Ain’t Love’ – liner notes

March 20, 2020

So, at the end of 2018, I decided it was time to get serious about my true love, writing and recording. I’d been away too long (lots to follow on that topic). And at the same time, I wanted to slim my life down. Really slim it down. Everything I had really owned me and I couldn’t take it anymore. 

I sold my house, and most all my material stuff and headed out west in January of 2019, just for a little clear-my-head time. It’s really liberating getting rid of your stuff, except music gear of course. I started buying more of that!

Seems that hotels along the way were inspirational, as odd as that seems. And I wrote a number of songs in hotels on the route west.  I’ve always thought that songs just kinda magically appear in my head. It’s like the universe is sending out vibes and you need to be ready and waiting with your guitar in hand to pick it up. 

This was one of those times when it just happened and ‘It Ain’t Love’ came out in like 10 minutes. I put my hand on a chord and the chorus was there. These are usually the better songs. Now every writer will tell you (except for maybe Dylan and McCartney) that this doesn’t happen every day. It’s a big high for me when it does!

I spend a bunch of time near Buffalo NY since I have family there. And the Goo Goo Dolls have a studio in Buffalo called GCR. Good people and reasonably priced, so, I though why not do a session or two there.  After my return trek from the west I booked some time and decided to lay the song down with a couple of great guys from the studio on Drums and Bass. I already had reference tracks down with vocals, acoustic, pedal steel and Strat. So, we used the click track to add the drums and bass. 

At this point the song was very Nashville. And I dig Nashville. That really is my style. But after listening for a bit back home (DC), it just didn’t feel right to me. It’s just not a country song . . . in my head anyway.

Shaw Hayes, the Strat player on the original tracks, and my favorite guitar player and Iguana band mate of old, suggested I change a lyric to make the song more female perspective. I was diggin’ that idea and thought how cool it would be to make it a duet with a chick singing the main verse.

So, I slowed the feel down, re-recorded the acoustic and drum tracks, removed the pedal steel, substituted the Strat melodic parts with strings. Then switched to upright bass and managed to get Audrey Karrasch to sing with me. She makes the whole song. Then again, I adore her voice!

I also learned a big lesson from this track. I need lots of revamping time. Trying things out in a big studio gets expensive. So, I updated a bunch of my gear at home so I could take all the time I needed to get everything the way I wanted, and then spend a bunch of time to editing stuff that no one will ever hear.

Of course, when the song was done, I needed a great mix. And that’s not an easy one for me to do. It’s really hard to judge sounds in my room. Actually, I spend most all of the time under headphones. So, I needed a good mixer in a real studio.

The Mix

Lots of people WILL tell you not to mix your own songs. I don’t really buy into that, but in this case there really was no choice. 

Thank you YouTube! I was watching a video about Plugins. If you don’t know what those are, they’re basically the software version of hardware used in studios. Anyway, Joe West was talking about workflow in his studio, and there was this big grammy sitting on his desk. I really didn’t know who he was, but I liked what he had to say, so, I looked him up.

Wow, Joe had (and has) great credits including hit songs, a grammy, a great story, and a great studio in Nashville. As it turns out he’s also a great guy.

So, I emailed him with a rough mix of the song and asked him what he thought. ‘I dig it he said’, which was a big high for me. A grammy winner who likes something I wrote? That could never get old.

I actually drove to Nashville to be there with him when he mixed the song. I wanted to meet him and was dying to see his studio. By the way, a Grammy is a heavy thing! Was also cool getting to hold one. Anyway, the end result was a great mix by a great guy!

The Details – (‘It Ain’t Love’)

Composer:  Gary ‘Arthur Bod’ Noubarian (BMI)

Publisher: Arthur Bod Music (BMI) – ArthurBodMusic@gmail.com

Producer:  Arthur Bod

Recording Engineer: A bunch of us

Mixing Engineer: Joe West (The West Barn)

Mastering Engineer:  Ted Jensen (Stirling Sound)

Recording Studios:  Here there and everywhere

The Players – (‘Lonesome Road’)

Arthur Bod – Lead and BG Vocals, D45 Martin

Audrey Karrasch – Lead and BG Vocals

Jeffrey Anthony – Drums

Rick Curran – String Quartet

LeoMusicDesign – Keys

Dave Roe – Upright Bass

The Lyrics

In your time do you think you’ll find, the love of your life
Well she just smiled and said to me
In my time I never did find the love of my life
So now I just need some company

It ain’t love so I’ll fake it tonight
It ain’t love but the mood is right
It ain’t love still I’m holdin’ on tight
But in the morning I’ll be gone ‘cause
It ain’t love
It ain’t love

Do you believe in forever
And happiness is an open door
No I don’t, and I won’t wait anymore

It ain’t love so I’ll fake it tonight
It ain’t love but the mood is right
It ain’t love still I’m holdin’ on tight
But in the morning I’ll be gone ‘cause
It ain’t love
It ain’t love

Copyright © 2020 – Gary Arthur Noubarian