Andy West: From Dregs to (Software) Riches
Pages: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Andy West: Music Examples

Discography Fever

Andy West goes behind the scenes on some of his standout recordings.

Dregs CD Zazen CD Rama 1 CD

The first three (Dixie) Dregs albums were all on Capricorn Records:
1977 Free Fall Our first album, really horrible recording but a lot of heart in the songs. Generally, a happy time was had by all.
1978 What If

A chance to work with a real producer, Ken Scott. He is amazing and I really like the album a lot. This album is much more mature-sounding than Free Fall.

1979 Night of the Living Dregs Ken Scott again, this time recorded live at the Montreaux Jazz Festival, Switzerland. It was great. Unfortunately (for me, but lucky for everyone else), a lot of the bass tracks ended up being overdubbed because they either sounded bad or there were mistakes that could be easily fixed. Still, in general it captured the sound of the band live.
The next three Dregs albums were all on Arista Records. (Clive was actually OK in my book. Anyone who would sign the Dregs and Happy The Man had to be a little out there! Then again, he did sign O-Town.)
1980 Dregs of the Earth Our first of three with Steve Morse producing.
1981 Unsung Heroes Overall, my favorite Dregs album.
1982 Industry Standard Our attempt to sell out with two vocal songs. "Assembly Line" is a really neat tune, however.
Later releases by the Dregs that were recorded while I was in the band:
1988 Ensoniq Promo: Dregs/Off the Record Re-recordings of "Leprechaun Promenade" and "Take It Off the top" done at Steve's studio when we all got together for two or three days.
1989 The Best of the Dregs: Divided We Stand A sampler of the Arista recordings plus a live version of "Take It Off the top." If you are only buying one album, this one represents us well. I think all are really worth having, though. :)
1997 King Biscuit Flower Hour Presents the Dixie Dregs A very good live recording.
1997 Alive Down South A bunch of southern rock bands recorded live at "Rebel Jam" in 1978. Contains two tracks, "Take it Off the Top" (will it never end?) and "Macon Bacon," which is not recorded anywhere else. This was the largest crowd we ever played to (Polygram Records).
1998 The Show That Never Ends: King Biscuit Best of Progressive Rock Two cuts from the previously mentioned King Biscuit Flower Hour, along with ELP, Renaissance, Gentle Giant, Rick Wakeman, and Greg Lake. It's cool to be included with Gentle Giant.
The following four albums are with Zazen, a group that was formed in order to create some really beautiful music primarily aimed for meditation. All of the members shared a common Buddhist philosophy and spiritual teacher:
1992 Mystery School Terra Nova Records
1994 Enlightenment Miramar Records
1995 Canyons of Light Miramar Records
1997 Cayman Blue Miramar Records
Various other recordings
1984 T Lavitz: Solo A very cool jazz album (Landslide Records).
1985 Vinnie Moore: Minds Eye - A very cool instrumental rock guitar album. The bass is a little hard to hear, though (Shrapnel).
1985 Steve Morse Band: High Tension Wires One cut, "Leprechaun Promenade," originally done as part of a promo for Ensoniq.
1986 Crazy Backwards Alphabet Not for the faint of heart and difficult to find (SST).
1986 Henry Kaiser: Those Who Know History Are Doomed to Repeat It (SST)
1994 John French: Waiting on the Flame Very interesting album with the former Captain Beefheart drummer and Henry Kaiser. I played on about half the tracks. This album ranges from almost corny folk to very experimental, out-there pieces (Demon Records).
1995 Paul Barrere: If the Phone Don't Ring This is a pretty cool album if you like the Little Feat style of music. Paul used the whole Dregs rhythm section--T, Rod, and myself. (Recorded 1983; Zoo/BMG)
1987 Joaquin Lievano: One Mind One cut, "An Uncommonly Fine Life" (Global Pacific Records).
1995 The Mistakes: The Mistakes Again, not for the faint of heart, but well worth the effort, I think (Immune Records).

Randy Alberts is an author, musician, and photographer who lives on Lummi Island, Washington.

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