When I first heard about people using click tracks I was very annoyed, offended actually. Why would a good musician, a drummer, use some electric rhythm generator? It seemed so insulting, implying that the drummer couldn’t do this simple thing from their talent.
First I heard about them then I actually experienced it working with producer Terry Brown. The nerve of him! I was all set to talk critically and angrily to Cleave Anderson the drummer, about this dastardly low blow by Terry. I rolled my eyes and said to Cleave
“I can’t believe he wants to use a click track!”
“I like it. It’s like I have a friend in my headphones and he has perfect time.”
I was a wee bit stunned. I had no clue someone might think like that – and why shouldn’t they?
When I was in high school I had the same response to the invention of electronic guitar tuners. What? Can’t you guys tune your guitars? I can tune my guitar fine thank you. But it’s not about whether or not you can tune or whether you can keep time. It’s just a perfect reference so you can compare yourself to it. It’s just accuracy.
Recently I wrote about Melodyne and how it blows my mind to use this to correct pitch problems while producing music. Among the people who sent me personal messages were a couple hostile weird guys who wanted me to know I was a sell out blah blah blah. It was a bit hilarious to read and a bit ludicrous. Where have I heard such holier than thou opinions before? Realizing how unlikely it was that I could explain to them it’s just a great useful tool, I did the mature compassionate thing – blocked them for eternity.