Friday, May 29, 2009

I Like It When People Leave Equipment at my House!!

Josh left his drums at my house. You know what that means? Kelly got blisters from rocking out on said drums.

I have pictures but I'm posting this from work, so I can't upload them.

I actually got some stuff together by having the drums around. I took them apart and set up the tom and snare so they stand up. I also moved the crash symbal and got out the brushes. Since I only had one pop filter, I only used one mic, but after an hour of mic placement and rearranging, I got some good sounds into the four track. I also set up some new songs! Just from banging away on the drums.

I get a lot of ideas from playing with beats. Some of our songs were written around drum sounds from my keyboard. Some of the stuff I want to build a song around, you can't get what I need out of a drum machine, so this leads me to believe I need josh around for this last bit of creation. Some of the ideas I have requires a drummer. So the next step in this puzzle is to play the J-man my really bad drumming and hope he can translate that into something Josh-esque. After that, the songs will write themselves. I got plenty to work with, I just that extra set of hands and that extra little push because I can hear it when I play guitar, I just need someone to attempt it with me.

Last night was pretty productive. Josh needs to leave his drums at my house more often.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

True Love Is Hard To Find

So Peach is getting married this next week. The band is preparing for this.

Now...onto other stuff.....

Writing is coming and going. With the pressure on the wedding and trying to win over Momma-Peach, I haven't done much in the way of writing. I stayed home by myself on saturday night and plunged into the final stretch of the albums written process. Some good things came out of my evening of isolation.

I have 11 song ideas and maybe 4-5 "REAL" songs. I'm pulling from a large source of stuff. I spent most of the night going through all the random notes I have written myself this semester and reading through all the random lyrical ideas I had during class. This is alot to pick through. Especially since my mind has been focused on other songs. Subject matters that might trump the others. But I consider that the hard part. Now, the cut and paste part begins.

"Election: 1800" is ready to be recorded. I changed the first part of the song but its still the same. No demo has been made yet, but i may not in order to focus on other stuff.

I have a new song in the works about aviation. I can't decide if it will be about The Wright Brothers or Howard Hughes. I have always found Hughes to be far more interesting, but Hollywood has not made a movie about Orville and Wilbur, so the attention may skew towards them or be about both. You never know. I have some literature I need to read before I cna continue with this one. It's a pop song. C-E-F-G. Pretty basic, and fun. I'm thinking this one needs to scream "FUN" because thats what flying is all about!

The newest obsession is Mr. Nikola Tesla. This is a must. I watched a documentary, and a History channel segment called "Modern Marvels" to get the juices running on this one. I have some chords, and I have some words. But nothing concrete yet. I need to dive into his life a little more. I'm thinking this could be the song to have Tha D and I go all out with fuzz pedals. That would be really cool.

"Dear Abby" has been a primary focus of mine. It's a song about Abigail Adams and her husband John. During John's time serving on the Continental Congress and being an Ambassador to France, he constantly wrote love letters to his wife seeking advice. This is the primary focus for the song. I have done a TON of research for this song and I see it being one of the best songs on the album, if not one of the best songs I have ever written. It's a love song although not a ballad. An epic guitar solo will be requested along with "arena" style drums. Oh yeah!

Thats all for now. I have a lot of work ahead of me. I'm off to a good start, and with friday nights show, and Peach's wedding coming and going, the rest of this madness will come to an end. I am also playing a solo gig in order to debut the newest of the new. It's motivation at it's best.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Promise me, comfort me, I think I'm going to be SICK!!

I've been sick for the last 10 days or more. It started during finals week and because weeks like that are so full of stress, I did not have time to be sick and I just ignored it and went on. After finals, I got handed two very large files at work that had to be done. With tests and papers out of the way, the focus shifted to work and once again, I ignored my illness because I had no time for it. Then, when i was finally able to slow down, thats when it hit. The head cold was gone but the coughing got worse. So bad, I was in a constant state of headache and could not walk across the room without leaving my lungs behind. Somehow, I managed to rock the faces off everyone at the Mercy Lounge on Monday night without a single cough. I think I sang better than ever.....

With all of that out of the way, I cna focus on finishing this thing. This has been my little baby since the beginning, witht he support of the other three band members, so I need to make the final push and have the rest of this thing written and have demos made by the time Peach gets back from Italy. Good thing Tha D and Josh aren't going anywhere, but the J-man might have a gig playing with a Russian hip-hop group called Das-Booty. We'll see how that pans out....but for now, I've got a head and a notebook full of stuff that needs to be organized.

I tried last night. I tried. I'm still not all better. I got out my guitars, cleaned up the room, set up microphones, jammed on the piano, sk-1, and the omnichord, set-up some pedals, but nothing came from it. Atleast I got all that stuff out of the way. I went to bed very early and woke up late. I need to enjoy these slower times a little more especially when i'm sick.

I t has also been pointed out that "Know It All" has nothing to do with American history. Yes, Marie Curie was French and she never set foot onto American soil. This is an exception because it was the only way to make the song work. Now, there has been talk of some ancient Rome and Egypt songs or maybe a song about historical landmarks that are falling apart. "Great Stink" is also about European sanitation, so we have strayed a little from the formula. But when I say "steer away" I really mean small details. History is all relative. So those of you paying attention to detail, you're getting an "A" in this class.....

I wrote the lyrics to "Let's Go To War" in American Military History class. I got a "B" in that class!! What? A "B+" Why not an A?? Anyways, thats the only song thatwas spawned from this semester. I was in an Ancient Egypt class, and believe it or not, nothing, not even a silly idea, came from that class. Seriously. Nothing. BUT in Film History,I had MANY ideas, and I wrote most of them down. Weird huh? Next semester could be a fruitful writing semester, and If we weren't trying to have the basic tracks done by the end of august, I would wait another 4 months just to see what I can come up with during those classes. Thats when I think the most. and thats kind of why I have continued to stay in school and really don't want it to end. For as stressful as it can be form time to time, it's actually relaxing and artistically stimulating.....

Come see us at the French Quarter Cafe on May 29th. Peach is getting married the week after, So come crash the wedding and watch us rock out for his family.....

Friday, May 8, 2009

Break (part 2)

My brain needs a break from life itself. If I could sleep for 72 hours straight, I bet I could finish this thing in one sitting. I'm exhausted, but I hear the 4-track calling my name.....

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Taking a Break: Pros and Cons

This project has been very consuming to me. From artwork and band photos to songs and track listing to the underlying themes and philosophy of the record, I have been engulfed by it since January. With my wedding near and the realization that we may not have any new songs ready for our last show before we go on hiatus to record this summer, I'm trying to take steps to take a break from thinking about it, from wondering about studio schedules or raising capital. I'll still pick up my guitar an mess around with what could be another contribution to the record if I finish it in time, but other than that, I want to distance myself from it. Kelly had to because of work and school, and I'm doing so because of closing school and my wedding and honeymoon (good thing I'm not traveling somewhere in America--it might cause me to think about writing more history tunes).

I think a break will do Kelly and me some good. I know gaining some perspective and focusing on some time with no shows scheduled will help Kelly to write the rest of this behemoth. I hope we can focus on it well enough to practice the songs and complete the recording before I go back to school in August. The downside of not having a show this summer is that I feel playing live is the best way to truly discover the potential a song, to uncover little choices to make it better. "Let's Go to War" and "Bob Dole" are just getting to where they really flow and really cook live, meaning they're ready for the studio treatment. I regret that whatever songs we write and complete, especially the newly completed "Commodity," won't get practiced in a live treatment if we keep that recording schedule. I think of the last record, how all the songs improved with time and performance from their inception and first performance to later performances.

In its first performance, Lane gave a certain succession of cymbal crashes to "Make-Out Couch" that inadvertantly created its powerful ending in subsequent performances. "Paid in Cocaine" had some and "Know It All" had countless word revisions at every show it was played live until it was brought to the studio (sometimes I think its lyrics could have used longer to incubate). "Man Vs. Cheetah" was debuted in September of '07, stripped down to acoustic and then built back up with electrics and Josh before it reached its final form in August, 2008. I am so glad that none of the earlier versions of that song were attempted in the studio. I regret that some of the currently un-written history songs won't get that kind of treatment (if we stay on schedule that is) before being recorded. We'll muddle through somehow, and I am completely confident the record will be great anyway, but I often wish we could focus on it without jobs or weddings, to put 100% into it and play it live around before recording, yet still keep our current time table.

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