Saturday, November 10, 2007

Demo - Staying in Tune

Julie join us in the studio to lay down the violin tracks. On listening to her playback, both Ben and her noticed that she was a little flat. They tried again, and again, eventually realizing that she needed to tune her D string slightly sharp. Next time through, it sounded good.

For me I hate to admit that it sounded just fine. Ben and Julie, however, have much better ears and pick up on an instrument or someone's voice being the slightest bit out of tune. We then got into a discussion about how often we hear people playing or recoding out of tune. To trained musician's being out of tune is like fingernails on a blackboard.

Take home lesson - BE IN TUNE with both your instrument and voice! If you don't have a great ear, get someone who does. Think of it as musical proof reading.

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Thursday, November 08, 2007

Demo - Part ??

It's all becoming a blur. Ben just announced that he's moving to NY and we're now on a deadline. We have to have the demo completed by early December. We spent two hours today and laid down the guitar tracks for three songs. My earlier challenges with the click track are a distant memory. Now I love having it, it helps me feel in the groove.

Tomorrow we have three hours scheduled and Julie comes for the first time. I've laid the foundation and its now time to add her vocals and violin tracks. It will be interesting to see how well my guitar tracks hold up after we add the violin.

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Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Songwriting blogging community

Theres' a pretty amazing community of songwriters that are blogging and sharing information on how they write songs. Most aren't asking for anything except that you check out what they have to say and listen to their music. Adding comments or sending them feedback is one way to say thank you.

I will start adding good sites to my links section of this blog. It's not easy in Blogger to add links, but I finally learned how.

Here's a few sites that I've been looking at recently:

Rob Roper's Blog
Blogging Muses
Lynn Harrison's blog
Nick Prudent's Blog - Song Hacker
Lorenzo D. Policelli - Publish My Songs
Songwriting Apples
Lyric Hut

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Monday, November 05, 2007

Detail in Songwriting

Rob Roper in his blog, recently posted an article The Importance of Detail in Songwriting . Rob gives an example of the song Mr. Valentine's Dead by Kevin Quain. He gives the lyrics and then removes the details to make his point. Some examples include
  • Gives the character a name, "Mr Valentine", as opposed to a generic "man"
  • Drinking "Manhattan's", as opposed to having a "drink."

Very thought provoking article. Unless I"m writing about a clear, vivid memory, I tend to start out most of my songs very generic. I'm still working on rewriting and adding detail.

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Friday, November 02, 2007

Calling me...

I was hiking and started humming the tune of a song I'm rewriting. As I continued to walk, I began to get the lyrics. It was what I was missing. However, I had nothing to write it down with. Realizing that all I had was my cell phone, I called home. Thinking that Julie would be home before me, I started out with, "don't erase this." Between dialing and my message intro, I lost some of the lyrics. I recorded what I could and walked some more. Eventually, I remembered and called home again. Good thing I was in cell range...

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