Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Writin' like a madman (redux)

Wow, "autocomplete" remembered I wrote a blog entry with this same title last year...hopefully my songs will be more original :-). Off to a great start - got six written so far (5 yesterday, 1 this AM), and hope to get at least two more done after work tonight. I'd be a happy camper if they were all written by end-of-Wednesday.

I tend to write the whole project quickly and up-front, and then spend a day or two of "getting to know you" with the tunes before recording: I'll try them in different tempos, different keys, different styles; also will fine-tune some lyrics and whatever else can use help. If current pace holds, I should be able to start recording (drum programming, actually) Friday or Saturday at the latest - a good weekend for it as I'll be hangin' around town in anticipation of Sunday's SuperBowl anyway (go Colts - if they win I get 1st place in the work pool!)

Rock on!
(cross-posted from http://www.rpmchallenge.com/component/option,com_mamblog/Itemid,291/task,show/action,view/id,13542/)

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

33 days and a wake-up...

Can't believe RPM'10 is just a month away! This'll be the 3rd Mile Long Post-It album, and quite possibly the last: Not necessarily my last RPMChallenge but probably the finale for MLPI in it's current format/sound.

That means the '10 album (working title "At Least Three") will have to be the best (always leave 'em smiling)!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Chillin' at the caba; lovin' 2kMi on CDBaby...

Havin' a great weekend up here in NorCal - my 1st real summer-like day (>75 on the deck). Gonna be an amazing year yet!

After much procrastination, 2kMi, the sophomore Mile Long Post-It release is available at CDBaby: http://cdbaby.com/cd/milelongpostit2. Love CDBaby, as along with cd distribution, they do a great job packaging up a mp3 release with a nice scan of the album cover, that is high-quality and no DRM (digital rights management). Plus the mp3's don't require the physical resouces a cd does - another nice thing (so the mp3 version is a few bucks cheaper!). Although it is nice to have a nice cd pkg to hold and check out (guilty pleasure). Either way, it's a great release with a nice variety of new material.

Next...probably lookin' to round up some musicans for Mile Long Post-It live shows - most likely an acoustic group to get going, but who knows what could happen. With two cd's of material, I figure ther are 10 or 11 tunes that would make a great little live set.

That's it for now - feel the urge to play some of those cool new 2kMi tunes now. Be excellent to each other and rock on!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Mp3's to MySpace; next few wks...

Just posted three tunes from "2kMi" over on MySpace (www.myspace.com/milelongpostit). Glad to finally have some mp3s out there as I've been in low gear since completing the challenge Saturday morning.

The next few weeks are going to remain flush with post-RPMChallenge activity. Top of the list is getting the cd duplicated - top question is what changes if any I'll make before sending it out for duplication. I'm proud of the version that was completed for and submitted to this challenge, but with that goal accomplished, I'm toying with fixing up the mixes a touch (low-mids are missing) and resequencing the track order. I'll blog on how it shakes out. Also still want to blog about the rest of the recording process, and need to get the promo machine rolling, redo the MileLongPostIt.com website, maybe add a "lyrics" section....oh, and sending a copy off to the copyright office wouldn't be a bad idea.

There's a great thread on another blog now about selling vs. giving away one's RPMChallenge album. Some very interesting opinions. I'm firmly in the "both" camp - I'll be giving away plenty of copies of "2kMi", but will also distribute - that is, sell - via CDBaby again for both physical (cd's) and download (mp3's) versions.

That's it for now - more coming soon....Rock on!

(Cross-posted to RPMChallenge: http://www.rpmchallenge.com/component/option,com_mamblog/Itemid,291/task,show/action,view/id,12524/)

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Psyched for last day of tracking

Ah, as the sun is rising above a crisp San Francisco morning, I see my last day of tracking (recording) for this challenge: Background vocals, keyboard parts (mostly mellotron, little piano, maybe some horn stabs), and guitar solos are all that is left. Almost bittersweet - the last week has felt somewhat stressful but also incredibly rewarding and fun! The time actually recording the guitars and vocals is SUCH huge fun...well, somewhat moreso the guitars but it is also a trip slapping on the headphones and dancing around like a diva doing the lead vox:-).

So by the time nightfall comes around (the Animal's "warm San Francisco Nights" the imaginary soundtrack behind this paragraph) the recording of all (ten) songs for the sophomore Mile Long Post-It release - still tentatively called "2kMi" - will be "in the can" as the groovy cats say. This daddy-o is on-target to start mixing tomorrow, and with 07day:12h;57min left, I'm on schedule! Wow.

Also got to get going on artwork, duplication, website updates, etc., but not really in the mood now - sounds like a good Sunday task!

As promised and by request, here's the technical lo-down on some stuff done over the last few days:

All rhythm electric guitar parts were done on either an Epiphone Casino (think Beatles) or an Ibanez Artist (think early-80's double-cutaway). Guitar into a Fulltone OCD pedal (most amazing pedal ever!), into a Fender Champ 12 amp (snakeskin - a critical part of the sound), to an AT3035 mic, into Toft ATC-2 preamp/EQ. This was a nice change from last year where it was done direct (via a Line6 POD), and getting "the amp sound" REALLY opened up the guitar sounds - much more organic.

Lead vocals ended up thru a ribbon mic - the "TapeOp group buy" mic that is basically a Nady clone. Into the Chandler TGChannel preamp/eq. Tried a few other mics including some much more expensive ones, but the ribbon just sounded the best on my voice and was the most natural "in the track" with the other parts. My 1st time doing vox with a ribbon mic - learn something new every day!

Just over a week to go - kinda sad. But REALLY lookin' forward to completing this album - some real good stuff!

Rock on!

(Cross-posted to RPMChallenge.com: http://www.rpmchallenge.com/component/option,com_mamblog/Itemid,291/task,show/action,view/id,11805/)

Friday, February 20, 2009

Jammin' rules!

Just about to jump into a busy day of RPMing...got 4 electric (rhythm) guitar parts, and all lead vocals on the agenda before bedtime. Am happy with the acoustic gtr tracks as well as the other electric gtr stuff done in the last few days. By popular demand I'll post the detailed recording notes for those things in nausiating detail later.

Yesterday? Zero RPM. But an amazing day! Had a great jam with my regular dobro player and a new bass player (along with my acoustic guitar). LOVE playin' with other people! Such a great way to improve as a musician, and soooo much fun. We were all in good form yesterday - jam's even better when it sounds good!

Mile Long Post-It is a solo project - I do all the writing, recording, playing and (almost all the) signing - 'cept for the female background parts :-). I love workin' alone on it. But, for the sheer joy of "making music", nothing beats playing with others!

Rock on!

(Cross-posted to RPMChallenge.com: http://www.rpmchallenge.com/component/option,com_mamblog/Itemid,291/task,show/action,view/id,11759/)

Friday, February 13, 2009

Bass done; tuner tip; weekend off (kinda)

Smooth sailing yesterday tracking the bass parts - now done for all (10) tunes. Was the first real use of a new bass (to me; actually "used" but in good shape) - an Epiphone "Les Paul Special". Sounded mostly great, and was pleased the intonation is good. For the recording geeks (like me!), signal chain was from the bass into the direct input of Chandler TG Channel (preamp/eq) into a Distressor compressor (set to "optical" mode). I think the sound is pretty good, but will scrutanize further come mixing.

Here's an old-school tuning tip when doing bass/guitar overdubs (in the "control room" or in front of the DAW) - Set up an aux send or similar from the bass/guitar input and patch the aux output into a tuner. MUCH easier than plugging/unplugging to tune. Did this using the audio interface's (MOTU 828mkii) little "monitor mix" application to send the bass/guitar input signal directly into "output 7/8", and then just a 1/4" cable from Output 7 into the tuner. Doing this on the MOTU (instead of in the recording software) worked great as there was always signal to the tuner and I didn't have to do anything in my recording software itself or in each song-project.

So with bass and drums done (and rough mixes to prove it :-) I'm taking the weekend off from RPM (kind-of) to chill and spend some quality time chillin in a woodland cabin with Ms. Mile Long Post-It. "Kind-of", you ask? I won't be doing any recording, but do plan to learn and rehearse acoustic and electric guitar parts (just playin' along to the aformentioned rough mixes). Well, and maybe start recording the acoustics later today (Fri) and after we get back on Monday. Can't really "turn off" RPM, can ya!?!

Rock on!

(Cross-posed to RPMChallenge website: http://www.rpmchallenge.com/component/option,com_mamblog/Itemid,291/task,show/action,view/id,11302/)