Expectations And Comparisons 

Third times a charm.  I've been trying to sum up the motivation to continue this story but it was a bit of a down week.  Internal and external forces at play, Mercury was probably in retrograde or something.  Actually what became clear was it was the song I was working on that was responsible.  I downloaded Milkman Amplifiers Creamer plug-in  for Logic and only had a week to use it before the free trial ran out.  I started with a riff that had no words and managed to turn it into a song but after many failed attempts at getting the recording right I gave up.  I turned my attention to what the tone was looking to be paired with and I found it, a song I called Just a Bruise.  I wrote it during a dark time about breaking the ties to Babymama.  I started recording it before Miriam and I went to see the Gypsy Kings and then I wrestled with over production after that.  Comparison.  But I eventually came to a finished song that I like, where every element gets a place and it's not just about the shimmering, tremolo drenched guitar floating in reverb.  I finished it yesterday and noticed an immediate improvement in my mood.  

It would seem I don't like working with deadlines looming, yet I can get the work done.  If that is recording guitar tracks.  I had written lyrics during the week that needed music and once again the tones of the Mix Wave Milkman Creamer plug-in came to the rescue and another deadline was born.  One day.  I want to buy the package but I'm holding off, I managed to capture a passable version of what was titled Charity Case.  I'm leaving the file open in hopes of a future collaboration with a guitarist who could take the song to the next level.  I hold no delusions about my playing, about my anything.  I just know what I like to hear, I look forward to recording with other musicians in a studio.  Sitting at a desk with a Scarlett 4i4 interface, a pair of headphones and Launch Key Mini I'm enjoying the process as much as the results.  I have a few guitars, a mandolin, a collection of harmonicas, a choice of microphones and an Orange Micro Terror with a tiny matching Orange cab.  Logic Pro X provides the rest.  It's an easy cheat, you need a string section, you got a string section, horns, grand piano, drummer, it's got it all.  When I listen back to the mix through my phone like all music fans these days, it sounds great.  I'm making some of my favourite music to listen to right now I can't wait to share it with you.  That's kind of what it's about, I'm tired of listening to music that doesn't cut it for me anymore, and that's a lot of it.  I'll take the Banda the neighbours blast cause it's just fun, theres a tuba and a squeeze box and horns, sounds great right.  It's kinda like Mexican Polka meets dixie land, you could square dance to it in the high school gym.  But I ain't Shazaming it to listen to later.

What's caught your ear lately?  I haven't found anything new in a long time, which isn't to say there isn't anything good out there, just that I don't know where to look.  All I know is it's gotta grab me.  I'm willing to see if something will grow on me I'll give it a few listens if necessary.  The last thing that I heard that I was like damn, that's speaking to me, I get it now, was Revolver, by The Beatles.  I know it ain't new and I've heard it before but this time I got it, it got me, I don't know.  I tried to recreate it with another Beatles' album but that was it.  It keeps the inspirations pure that way.   I know every song I write is a reflection of another song already written and often I now find that I'm pulling a John Fogarty and ripping myself off.  In cases like that I always say I'll give it to which ever song takes off first or at least keep them off the same record.  There's only so many chords and my vocals only have so much range.  Listen to enough music and you begin to hear where things came from.  Hip hop especially you can trace cadence and rhymes around.  I like to steal from here and there, now and then.  Songs are generally about only a few central themes, everything's bound to get recycled once or twice here and there.  It's part of the fun of being a fan, tracing the influence.

Lately I've been noticing my 80's influences coming out.  I need some shredders chops to complete the sound though, some big hairy metal arena rock riff complete with tapping and sweeps.  Totally not my style of play but I suppose if I have to play every part myself forever I'll get there.  The trouble recording every part myself right now is it all seems to be me, the guitarist, bassist and drummer are all playinng the same riff while the keyboardist hunts and pecks his way through the rudiments and cleans it up in production.  Any musicians out there looking to combine forces, I have a vision of the next Grateful Dead touring circus.  Originally this band was to be called The Gryphon's Door, magic awaits all those who pass through it.  I still envision this coming together but first I had to go solo just to get the ball rolling.  There's no set number but a drummer, bass player, lead guitarist and a keyboardist who plays organ and Moog's plus that multi instrumentalist who plays pedal steel and any stringed instrument put in front of them.  

While I'm dreaming I might as well go right into it.  It will be an event, a show, a scene, a culture not simply a concert.  Three sets, acoustic, radio hits and then jam session, with a break for sonic soundscapes between sets.  Let's bring back the idea of taking drugs and listening to music and doing it together as a large group of people.  Let's create a cosmic experience that people will crave and chase around the country, spreading the word and helping to change the world with positive sound vibrations.  Music has been my resource for making sense of this world, it's a big part of processing, of reclaiming my sanity  amongst the insane.  How can I help keep this age old tradition alive?  I'm adding to it every day waiting for the right participants that will drive it forward.  


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