Great Caesar’s Ghost! It’s been almost a week since my last post! My girlfriend is visiting me this week, and I must confess that I’m a bit distracted by her delightful presence. The sheer number of movies being watched astounds even me. Anyway, I’ve re-uploaded my songs so that everything is roughly the same volume. In order to do this, however, I had to tweak some levels since the compression of the brick-walling changes how everything sounds, so when I turn the levels back down, things aren’t at the volumes I intend them to be.
Of course, even though I set out only to change some levels, once I revisited the old mixes, I couldn’t resist tampering and making things sound “even better” in general (it’s sort of hard not to when you revisit a song after having learned a bunch of new tricks). The remixes are, for the most part, very subtle, and you may not even notice the difference (with the exception of one neat effect I added to “American”). But I do think they sound more polished now. Sorry to get all George Lucas on you, but in my defense, I haven’t technically “released” them yet, so there.
Speaking of official releases, though, check back later this week because for the first time, my songs will be downloadable! That’s right. And if that weren’t exciting enough, I’m going to release them under a Creative Commons license, which will give you permission to do stuff with them that you wouldn’t normally be allowed to do. I’ll explain all about that in my next post in a few days, and hopefully, one post after that, I will upload A NEW SONG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Right, so…you can listen to the remixed songs on my Music page here.
Oh, and here’s something fun:
Zach King is not a musician. In fact, I think this is his only “musical” video, but I still recommend checking out his YouTube channel because his ridiculous videos have an almost disturbing ability to make me laugh out loud with pure, innocent delight.
Now back to watching seven thousand movies. Bye!
Are you excited? I am! This is my first “in-depth” (i.e. horrendously long) post!
Okay. I’m about to explain why my new song, “My Creed,” is quieter than my first five uploaded songs. I initially wanted to do this rather briefly, but I think it would be fun to talk about it in some length (i.e. AN UNREASONABLY LONG ESSAY). Consequently, I’ve created (as well as I am able to with my knowledge and experience) what can really be called a full treatment for the layperson on the topic of the Loudness Wars. Also consequently, if you already have a basic understanding of this topic, you should probably go do something more worth your time, like going over to Aunt Ruthie’s with a few buddies of yours and playing a nice game of Bridge because, you know, Aunt Ruthie doesn’t really have anybody and she would just be so happy if she had a visitor once in a while. Besides, it would be really neat to learn to play Bridge, don’t you think? And it would make her feel special to teach someone something new. It would be a great bonding experience for the two of you. And then, at her inevitable funeral, you’d have something to say, like, “I’ll never forget all those wonderful evenings of Bridge. She taught us all how to play, you know.” As opposed to, “Wait, Mom, Aunt Ruthie…she was the one in the wheelchair, right?”
However, if you aren’t knowledgeable about the topic, or if you’re perfectly content harboring a lifetime of bitter family regrets, then I invite you to stay! It might be interesting for you. I’ve added some sound clips and visual aids, so it’ll be fun as a nice game of Bridge!
Also, if I’ve played my cards right (Get it? Get it?), you should leave this site with a solid understanding of:
1. What the Loudness Wars are and why music today sounds louder than it did twenty years ago.
2. How easily we can be tricked into believing that louder mixes are better.
3. How to keep your man interested.
3. How this has negatively affected music and why mixing engineers hate it.
Here we go!
Seven exclamation points means this post is seven times as exciting as my average post. What do you mean? Of course I’ve figured out a way to quantify excitement. Haven’t you? Man, you’re, like, three to five times lamer than me.
Anyway, I’m sure no one cares right now because it’s Friday night and you’re all at Da Club, but here’s a new song, fresh off the virtual mixer. I know it’s two days late, but this bass line really kicked me in the center of my face. Not that it’s insanely difficult to play, but I’m no bass player (I can barely call myself a guitar player), so my other mixes were recorded with a guitar pick, and I just covered up the harsh pick attacks with EQ. But this time, I wanted to do it right (not that there’s anything wrong with playing bass guitar with a pick, but I think for this type of song, finger-picking is more appropriate). Basically, I gave myself a few hours to learn to play a bass guitar finger-style in such a way that the result wasn’t COMPLETELY EMBARRASSING to listen to. So that was an ambitious goal, and it was a mistake.
Anyway, if the recording process weren’t tedious enough, I then had a hell of a time mixing everything, as I always do, but the good news is, I think I’ve finally learned how to actually EQ a bass track! You know, in a way that sounds decent. It’s all thanks to this post by Joe Gilder at HomeStudioCorner.com:
I’d already been doing the high-pass filter stuff, but the section on “Curing the Headache” was like a magical potion of sonic pleasantries. Anyway, check it out if you do any mixing or care.
Finally, on the topic of mixing and/or mastering, you may notice that this song is not as loud as the others I’ve posted. There’s a reason for that. I’ve decided that I’m giving up my fight in the Loudness Wars. If you don’t know what that means, I’m going to tell you all about it in my next post, by which time I will have also re-uploaded my first five songs after I’ve made them quieter to match the sound of this new one.
Oh, and don’t worry, I’ve got another couple of songs in the works. I’m gonna keep these things coming.
Packing up my things to go back home tomorrow. I got a bunch of raw recording done (and some mixing – I couldn’t help it), and I’ll have a new song up within the next few days, so check back this week. I seem to have developed a Wednesday/Sunday pattern for posting. I don’t know if it’ll stay that way yet, but I’m going to try to make it my goal to get a new song posted by Wednesday. Gulp.
Oh, hey, look! A link to a really well-written song by Honor Finnegan!
I like good songs because they motivate me to write good songs. I also happen to like good things in general. I figure good things are good. But that’s just me.
Still recording in Michigan! I’ve got two songs mostly done and am working on a third. I’m basically dwelling almost exclusively inside a closet this week, playing Tetris with awkwardly-shaped equipment. Oh, look! Below there appears to be a video on the subject!
So, I’m in Michigan right now, house-sitting. I spent the day yesterday setting up my equipment and testing video, and now begins a week of recording (except that I have to fix the intonation on my guitar first, which is a tedious pain in the poopy-thing). I should have more songs up within a couple of weeks, and eventually, videos! Scroodledy-Doo!!!! You know, something like this, only probably not as cool:
This is already one of the coolest American songs in existence, and this is probably the coolest rendition I’ve ever heard. If you haven’t heard of Lauren O’Connell, then you’re a terrible person and you should be ashamed of yourself. No, not really. I hadn’t heard of her until very recently. But she’s brilliant, in more ways than one. Anyway, what people achieve in their bedrooms never ceases to amaze me. That’s not a sex joke. You have a disgusting mind.
So, I’ve got nothing new at the moment, but there is an exciting happenstance befalling me (I’m a strange person): I’m house/cat-sitting for over a week starting this Saturday and will have a nice, quiet house all to myself (well, almost…my brother is coming with me…and there will be a cat…obviously). Anyway, as my current living situation doesn’t make for ideal recording conditions, this will be an excellent opportunity for recording AS MUCH MUSIC AS HUMANLY POSSIBLE!!!!!!!!! For purposes of time efficiency, I’ll be recording raw tracks only, leaving the mixing for when I get back, but I’ll post each new song as soon as it’s finished.
For now, here is an entertaining piece of streaming video media:
I swear, if these guys were in charge of public school math curricula, our country’s education problems would be fixed.