Well it has certainly been a while! As you know from my last post, I’ve been involved with quite a bit for the last year and a half, so I’ve put this blog on hiatus. Here’s one of the things that was taking up my time:
First of all, I’ve notice a very slight, yet steady increase in average daily views over the last few months, which is pretty sweet. Thanks to all of you who check back regularly! I originally started this blog to post updates on my current projects, so let me do some of that right now.
The next series I plan to post about is on ear training. Topics like learning how to distinguish the different intervals (major 3rd, minor 7th, etc), scales, and chords all by ear. If you’re not familiar with ear training, I strongly suggest looking into it.
BACKING TRACK STUFF:
I’ve been working on a backing track for Tiana McKelvy (http://www.tianamckelvy.com/) which will be finished by the end of this week. It’s sort of a rock/R&B/pop feel, and so far includes acoustic/electric guitar, bass, drums, djembe, egg shakers, tambourine, keyboard, and mandolin (and of course eventually her vocals). I’ve got a few more friends lined up who want tracks made for them, but if you or anyone you know is interested in one, feel free to shoot me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org!
UPCOMING ALBUM STUFF:
Over the last few months I’ve been cooking up some ideas for my new album. I’ve been drawing a tremendous amount of inspiration from New York City since I’ve been living here, and I’m sure a lot of that will show up in the music and lyrics. Once in a while I take my mandolin over to central park and improvise for one or two hours at a time, which has so far led to one mandolin-heavy track. What are the main differences between these new songs and the tracks on my first CD, you ask? Well, more djembe, more guest musicians, a little more focus on musicality, and a wider range of styles/energy level between the tracks. Also, I plan on doing 90% of the recording myself, which will pose quite a big challenge that I’m pretty excited to tackle.
So far I have roughly eight ideas for songs, with three or four in an almost-completed state. It’s chuggin’ along.
Again, thanks for all of your support thus far. I’ll close this update with a bit of self advertising. As always if you like what you read, see, or hear, please consider supporting me by following/liking my various pages!
Here’s a song that will eventually be on my next CD. Hope you enjoy it!
A little while ago I decided to make new music business cards for myself. While designing them, I discovered that I had racked up about 5 or 6 links to online profiles related to my music. As I stubbornly attempted to cram all of the complicated URLs into the business card template file, I began to think, “wow, having one website to link people to would be amazing”. Thus, the quest to make my own website commenced.
I completed that quest today, and you can see the results for yourself:
It’s not the prettiest or fanciest of websites, but it provides me with a “home base” to present everything I’ve worked on.
Now run and tell all of your friends about this exciting news!
In other news, I’m just about finished working on a backing track for a friend of mine, and have begin the process of record demos for my next CD. I promise more helpful music blog posts are in the horizon.
For the last few months I have been upgrading my recording gear, helping a friend record a CD, and expanding my acoustics experience at my part time job in Manhattan.
The project I helped record was for my friend Ryan Pappolla. He writes his own lyrics to popular rap songs and records over their backing tracks (he also gets his friends to record the vocal choruses). While this isn’t necessarily my scene, I had a lot of fun working on it. His enthusiasm and passion for what he does truly makes these covers unique and very entertaining. You can hear the finished product on his bandcamp page.
Working on that project made me realize how badly I need an equipment upgrade. I brought my laptop, preamp, and vocal mic to his house to record his rap vocals as well as his friends who sang on the songs. I then mixed and mastered everything through headphones back at my apartment. All things considered, I don’t think it came out half bad! However it was still frustrating to work under such improvised conditions, and I am now working on some upgrades.
Armed with a new pair of studio monitors, I’m currently making a home studio out of the room back at the house I grew up in. It’s here that I plan to track most of the instruments for my next album.
This album will be much more ambitious than Big Thoughts in a Small Place, with a goal of 10 to 12 songs of which I will attempt to do a majority of the recording and producing (I am sure I will call upon the help of my very talented friends along the way). I also plan to make a Kickstarter in order to fund any necessary expenses.
Stylistically, I’m looking to make this new album a little livelier and more experimental than my first, while still maintaining that folky vibe. I definitely have a challenging road ahead, but I’m excited to move forward.
I’d like to thank anyone who has been keeping up to date with my blog, and would encourage you to spread the word. It would mean a great deal to me if you could recommend any posts to your friends. I also want to remind you guys that if you have any comments, questions, or suggestions, please don’t hesitate to respond to any of the posts. I’d like to get to know ya.
Take care and hope you’ve had a swell Father’s Day!
Take a look at a new recording of an older song of mine played on a double-neck acoustic guitar.
For those of you out there interested in learning about artificial harmonics on the guitar, here’s a little video I whipped up.