Me Playing a New Song
Hey, hey! So, remember that YouTube channel of mine? Well, before today (as you know), I had only uploaded videos of myself performing songs I’d officially “released.” I had this absurd desire to only reveal songs for the first time if they were fully mixed, finished products, like I had some sort of duty to the world not to half-ass things, to offer up nothing if not solid, finished work.
Well, I’ve changed my friggin’ mind. I mean, there are all these really great songwriters singing countless songs into crappy webcams on “The YouTube,” and no one seems to mind this because people just plumb appreciate being exposed to good songs, whatever form they come in. And dag gummit, I’ve got all of these songs I’ve been itching to share, and I don’t want to have to share one every month or two until I’m eighty.
Now, granted, I’m not much of a singer (unlike many of the more successful YouTube acts), so a simple bare-bones performance from me leaves much to be desired, I admit. But, bizarre facial contortions aside, it is my hope that a series of solo YouTube performances will give you at least some idea of what my tunes are supposed to sound like, and maybe hold you over while I take the time to cook up some pretty mixes for you to eventually download (or some videos that are substantially more interesting to look at). Besides, it’ll mean less “filler” blogs, right?
So without further ado, here’s the first of a bunch of “half-assed” world premieres:
A Rising Star
Evening, friends. Behold! Here is an rather brilliant artist named Emma Louise. You ought to be hypnotized somewhere within the first fifty seconds. Just watch:
Right, so I predict that by this time next year, this girl will be bigger than Adele. I’m serious. Here’s why I think so:
1) She’s spent the last year selling out shows in Australia and signing international record deals.
2) She has a gorgeous voice.
3) She writes her own songs, and they are the types of songs which will appeal to a broad audience.
4) She’s pretty, and that can’t hurt.
5) Not only does she write her own songs, but she writes them at an astounding rate and somehow manages to do so without sacrificing a single bit of quality. Her Youtube channel features some forty songs, all of which she seems to have written within the span of one year. The music is all equally beautiful, and the lyrics are consistently strong and at times, deeply moving.
6) Her debut album is supposed to come out early next year.
Okay, I don’t know about being bigger than Adele, but she’s definitely gonna be a big star. Check out her channel now so that a year from now you can gloat that you knew about her way before any of those other posers did! This is also particularly exciting to me because it’s rare that I come across a pop star whose music I really like, and I very well may be willing to buy her CD when it comes out. On the other hand, major record labels being what they are, all of her songs will probably be arranged into dance beats which feature Jay-Z contributing a hip-hop breakdown after the second chorus. Sigh.
Hey, folks! Check out the new band, The Centennial from Denver, Colorado. You can download their entire EP on their website, thecentennial.net. The group was started by the founding members of Meese. Don’t know if you’ve heard of them, but they were quite successful for a while. Anyway, all of their stuff so far just plain makes me feel good. Here’s an example. Enjoy!
Sleep When We’re Dead – The Centennial
Oh, and I’ve got various things of my own in the works, including videos, musical collaborations, and more songs. Hooray! Stick around (spoken in Arnold Schwarzenegger voice, of course).
Yeah, that’s right. Exclamation points. What? Hey, I just wanted to share a video by my friend Jim. He does a lot of Metallica covers, so I sort of think that’s cool, and stuff. Also, he seems to be a bit of a purist when it comes to recreating the original recordings, so that makes his covers particularly neat. Check out this video he made using his new Insta-Klone machine. Once he’s finished, he uses his Fast-Ash home cremator to save money on groceries! Both products are made by Procter and Gamble and can be found at your local Inventions of Unspeakable Horror outlet! Anyway, this is his version of one of Metallica’s instrumental tracks called “I Was Better at Guitar in Pre-School Than Matt Glaz Is Now.”
I will be doing a fun musical collaboration with Jim and my friend Jerry pretty soon, so be sure to check back for that. Toodles!
A Long-Overdue New Song
Okay, so I’m not dead. I’m also not on hiatus. I’ve been hard at work (except for those couple of days when I was slightly lazy and those other few days when I was taking care of a sick girlfriend). Anyway, when I wrote “give me a couple of days,” I obviously meant a couple of weeks (and a half). Whatever. I have no excuse. Here’s a new song, though!
Actually, it’s not really new. It’s one of the first actual whole “songs” I ever wrote…you know, with lyrics (ASTERISK) and everything, although I didn’t write any of the crazy bells and whistles until now. That seems to be how I generally do it. I think all of these songs so far started out as one guitar part and a vocal line (and maybe a few harmonies). Then begins the arduous (yet fun!), trial-and-error process of filling in the horrifyingly vacant silence filling my headphones. Can anyone tell by the nonsense I’m writing that I’m very sleep deprived?
(OTHER ASTERISK) Speaking of lyrics, there’s nothing particularly mind-blowing here, okay? I just really like thunderstorms. Leave me alone. In fact, I was going to leave this one for later, but I had a couple of requests for it (Clarisseclarisseclarissemarkmarkmark), so I revisited it and thought, “Damn, this song is catchy!” Right. Well, see ya!
Happy Beltane, Everyone!
Okay, I’m technically a few hours late (my time), but as it was the first of May, I thought a little Jonathan Coulton was in order. Initially, I was just going to post his recording here, but then I thought, wait, why not perform it myself? So then I had to learn it and make a video, which took me about four kabilliondy takes. The lyrics were barely memorized, and I eventually caved and tacked them, printed, to the wall. And then I was still messing up the chords. I wish I had gotten the idea just a day earlier. Anyway, I did manage to get the recording itself done before midnight, so ha! Anyway, please enjoy this video:
Jonathan Coulton has a website with a tremendous amount of music. Click here for that. Oh, and yeah, give me a couple more days on this new song of mine, will ya? Thanks.
Another Video With Silly Annotations!
Here’s me playing “American.” I filmed this earlier tonight. I would have done so sooner, but the other day I came home to discover a computer which refused to boot, and I spend a fair number of hours vomiting from dread. It turns out, however, that I do not need to spend copious amounts of money on a new motherboard or anything like that. As I had suspected, my system was overheating and shutting itself off, and the reason seemed to be that my heat sink somehow became dislodged from the CPU (I also cleaned from off the surface of the heat sink what could quite reasonably be described as a solid wall of dust, which I’m sure wasn’t helping matters all that much). Take care of your personal computers, kids, or they’ll be gone before you know it!
Anyway, things are back up and running now (although, strangely, a large portion of my Adobe Premiere program files had vanished from my hard drive, and I had to reinstall it). As my next big project, I was going to make a SERIOUS video for Existential Pathology, but I’ve got a new song that’s coming along rather nicely, so with fingers crossed, I should have it finished in a few days. For now, enjoy staring at the hair sticking up in the back of my head!
Okay, here’s me playing another song…If you can’t tell, this was recorded on the same day as the first one. That’s because I knew I’d be out of time when I needed to post it, so I filmed it ahead of time. I’m incredibly wily like that. This one doesn’t have ridiculous annotations. At least, not yet…
Anyway, I promise I’ll post something soon that’s more exciting than just me and a guitar. In the meantime, enjoy!
YouTube Channel Grand Opening
Wow, look! It’s me performing one of my songs!
There are more of these coming, so don’t touch that dial, folks! And you know, feel free to share and subscribe and everything (nudge, nudge, poke, poke). That reminds me…remember poking? Yeah, that was stupid, wasn’t it? Anyway, it will probably take an unreasonable amount of time for my video to show up in searches, but my channel is “Matt Glaz”, and my username is mattglaz1, just as on this website. For now, here’s the url:
Oh, also, I’ve updated my MySpace music page for the first time in seventeen years. It now contains all of my full mixes instead of the horrible ones that were on there before.
Have a pleasant Wednesday, mofos!
Finally! A New Song! Aaaaaaahhhhh!!!!!
Gasp! It’s done! My God, what a headache! Seriously, I don’t know what it was about this one, but it caused me much chagrin (look it up; it’s really worth it). Oh, speaking of obscure words, please forgive the extremely pretentious title of this song. I was in college when I wrote it. What do you want?
Anywhom, this time around, the mixing wasn’t a problem. I think I’ve got the hang of a lot of things. No, what really took a long time was the artistic decisions behind the arrangement, and as it turns out, this is often the case for me. One thing I’ve learned about myself recently is that I am particularly terrible at knowing ahead of time what will sound good. I’ll think, “Hmm, the second verse is missing something. I need to add a new track. I think some backup vocal ‘oohs’ would be perfect!” I then spend a considerable amount of time trying to harmonize on-key with myself (something I’ve also recently found myself to be embarrassingly inept at), only to realize that such an addition actually sounds completely inappropriate. I then end up playing around with different things and eventually discover that what sounds best is something that I had dismissed in my “mind’s ear.” Mind you, each new thing I try requires at least a couple of minutes to set up microphones/levels, etc., and I can easily spend several hours finding “10000 ways that don’t work,” to quote Ben Franklin (Jesus, what am I today, a freakin’ high-school English teacher?). And this is a six-minute song we’re talking about here.
The other thing that took me a while to get right was THAT GOD DAMNED GUITAR SOLO. HOLY MACKEREL. Here’s another example of my imagination failing me. I originally intended this to be an electric guitar solo (which is a significantly easier instrument to play), but I tried it, and it was wrong. It was all wrong. Then, when you add the fact that I wrote the solo in my head before forcing myself to learn to actually play it, as well as the fact that my guitar-playing skills in general are downright mediocre, you have a recipe for horrors beyond all human understanding. Let’s just say that during the recording process, I experienced levels of despair far surpassing those suggested by the lyrics (I think it’s sort of funny listening to the song while imagining that I wrote the words immediately after recording the solo).
One thing I do think is really cool about this song is that, besides the bass guitar part, it’s an entirely acoustic mix. The percussion was created using random objects that were in my immediate vicinity. I filmed myself recording everything, so you’ll get to see it all soon.
And that reminds me: I’m going to start a YouTube channel, which I’ll direct you to in a couple of days, and soon enough, you’ll get to see marvelous videos for My Creed and Existential Pathology. It will take me some time to edit those, but I’ll be posting other stuff in the meantime. I’ve realized that it can take me some time to finish these epic mixes, and in the meantime, I think it’s kind of lame to just post some random video I’ve found on the internet, no matter how cool it is. So I figure I can at least throw up some videos of me doing something musical, even if it’s simpler than a full mix. Anyway, stay tuned for that.
For now, you can download my new song for free (and any of my songs on the Music page), and the same copyright rules apply, as it’s under the same Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License, so you’re free to distribute, share, perform, or create derivative works, as long as you don’t charge money and as long as you give me credit for the original. You can find all the info about that on my Music page, as well.
Right. Well, enjoy!
P.S. I hope everyone had a happy Easter/Passover/Vernal Equinox/Yadda Yadda
Free Downloads Are Here!
Click HERE!!!! Click! CLICK!!!!!!
Yes, yes. I know. It’s completely and utterly unbelievable and at the same time, totally amazing. Plus, it’s awesome. All of my music is downloadable. AND FOR FREE.
I don’t believe you!
Like, all-caps free?
YES. ALL CAPS FREE. In pristine 192 kbps mp3 format. BOOM! The big wheels are in motion. There’s no stopping me now. I’ve got official copyrights pending on everything, so don’t try anything funny.
Actually, the exact opposite is true. I am releasing all of my music under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License, which means you have the legal right to copy, distribute, share, give away, perform, cover, use, remix, and modify my songs, as long as you credit me for the original creation and as long as you don’t charge money for anything you do with it. You can find out more about the license here and here, and more about Creative Commons here.
Oh, and did I mention that you can download my music HERE????????
No, but seriously, I figure I’ve got six songs up now, so I’ll keep giving ’em away for free as I upload them until I’ve got a good album’s worth (say, twelve tracks), at which time I’ll maybe start charging money for my OFFICIAL FIRST ALBUM! So get ’em while they’re free because, you know, later it will be IMPOSSIBLE to acquire them without paying money, just like all musical recordings today!
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!
The Loudness Wars: Why Music Isn’t What It Used to Be
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!
A New Song!!!!!!!
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.
Look out for a new song this week
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!
Pictures of Snow – 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 at It
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!
Recording in Session
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.
New Songs Coming Real Soon!
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.
Yes, so, I have this thing called a “website” now. It’s pretty exciting. Anyway, feel free to look around, leave comments, etc. It’s not much so far, but my music and lyrics are here. There’s plenty of music to come, and plenty more other stuff. I’ll be expanding and adding things pretty crazily in the coming weeks, as well as making my songs actually downloadable, so check back soon because chances are, things will become increasingly fun around here! And…goodbye.