what is going on in your musical life

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this can be a rolling thread, maybe. forgive me if one already exists, i didn't see it.

i started taking guitar lessons again! that is exciting

my long term black/doom metal band (argentinum astrum) recorded an album last fall and we're waiting on a label dude to get another label to go in on releasing it? i have no idea how or what that is about. i want it to come out soon because we haven't put anything out in a couple years and i want to tour and am antsy about it.

im learning ableton in order to start doing electronic stuff by myself. that's kind of on the backburner atm tho

one of my fave local bands atm asked me to replace their bassist/harmony singer and i am probably gonna do it. it is kind of superchunk-esque?

i started a band with 2 of my girlfriends and we just had our first practice. guitar, bass and drums. playing kind of 60s-esque poppy tunes so far, but i have no idea where we will end up. i think we are gonna be called "high school"?? please tell me if that is a ridiculous name.

i recorded this local band called Killer Whale who play very crazy surf-influenced punk/metal, i love them and i am excited to record bands and put out records and things tho god it is so expensive to do this

i've been playing in this band with a weirdo that plays only covers of local, small time musicians. i just joined it, but it's kind of a local institution, been around a while with a rotating cast of ppl around this one guy. i don't know. it's fun to play with him , and very fun to choose and learn the songs, but he has a weird value system w/r/t music, ie he doesn't want me to sing harmonies cause i sing "like an angel", which isn't really true. he also has no ambitions (how can you be ambitious with a covers band really tho) and is really skeptical of people who have them. its fun tho.

i dont really have time to do any of this stuff

purp (roxymuzak), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 17:04 (eight years ago) link

this band with a weirdo that plays only covers of local, small time musicians

haha i love this

queeple qua queeple (Jordan), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 17:17 (eight years ago) link

haha its exactly what it sounds like

purp (roxymuzak), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 17:18 (eight years ago) link

the first person I contacted about guitar lessons is too busy to take me on as a student but promised to give me contact info for other ppl, which basically means I am back at square one re: finding a guitar teacher

I am currently in the process of tracking down sheet music for a recital of solo and ensemble spiritual arrangements I'm doing as part of a quartet made up of ppl from my church choir (inc. my wife as the soprano) for the Tuesday before Easter; we're also going to take parts of that recital to do as music for the Good Friday service later that week.

I'm also looking over the Dvorak Mass in D major, which I'm doing at an evening Good Friday service in Dorchester; my primary responsibility AFAIK is augmenting the bass section but I believe I'm also going to be doing the tiny solo parts as well. (The other ppl from that include my wife again plus other folks from the spiritual ensemble we sing in.)

Also have a concert with the church choir coming up where we're doing Stainer's Crucifixion; I am not the bass soloist for it (thank God).

"Bellini." (DJP), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 17:42 (eight years ago) link

i didnt realize you were a bass! it occurs to me that i have never actually heard you sing. i imagined you having a very high tenor voice. haw.

purp (roxymuzak), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 17:43 (eight years ago) link

i started a band with 2 of my girlfriends

Me too! We are called Ta1nted Pussy and have played 2 shows so far. We were supposed to have a show next Saturday opening for this weird Dutch guy, but he got detained by the Dutch government and told he can't leave the country without a work permit, so that show was cancelled. I play bass. I have not played bass since I was a teenager. So now I get to have fun learning/re-learning an instrument, plus I get to have fun with pedals. We are all noise/new music ladies, thus lots of fun with pedals. I got a Dr. Sample 202 for christmas! More fun! I kept one of the built-in samples, which is a lady saying "Stand By" for when we have technical difficulties during our sets.

We are planning to tour at some point later this year. L.A., maybe the South?

sarahell, Tuesday, 5 March 2013 17:53 (eight years ago) link

next month we have a gig opening for Cock E.S.P.

Our singer said, "Why do we always end up on shows with other bands with dirty names?"

sarahell, Tuesday, 5 March 2013 17:54 (eight years ago) link

having trouble finding time/motivation/energy to do anything too focused or serious over the past couple of years. i was playing with my friend who's a full-time musician but he decided to just play shows solo instead of with a band because the economics/logistics are easier that way. i've been doing some sample-based stuff on reason recently, i like it because it takes me back to when i was learning guitar and didn't know what i was doing and would come up with cool stuff by accident. also occasionally jamming/recording with the drummer from my old band, doing shitty lofi four-track stuff.

i would really like to have a more regular band where someone else bore the heavy lifting of the songwriting and i could just come in and play guitar and play shows a few times a year. but i'm not really connected to any kind of music scene anymore so i don't know how to find that kind of situation.

congratulations (n/a), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 17:56 (eight years ago) link

Band practice tonight. Eagerly anticipating our two track demo bak from being mixed/mastered although worried it might sound bad as we only spent two days on it.
Working on writing and practising our next batch of songs after an initial 6. It's now a concern that we have a 'sound' and aesthetic developing, meaning that we have songs we wrote and quite like that for one reason or another don't work very well alongside the others. Anyone had this problem? It didn't really matter before because we were still forming an identity which eventually formed into 6 upbeat slightly unhinged post punk numbers, but now this next one is a big dramatic sweeping thing with a more serious tone and we're not sure what to do with it.
Also written a reggae song, which I'm please with but need a way to subvert because right now it's verging a little too close to sixth form peace and love bob Marley cliches and I want to put a twist on all that really.
Wrote a sort of fast kinda sung-rap song but my girlfriend said it sounded like flight of the conchords. Not that that's an insult, but I wanted it to aoud more like Haim or something.

dog latin, Tuesday, 5 March 2013 18:02 (eight years ago) link

i didnt realize you were a bass! it occurs to me that i have never actually heard you sing. i imagined you having a very high tenor voice. haw.

haha that would make my dad very, very happy (he's a failed tenor in a previous life, sang lead in a doo-wop group in college)

I am technically a "bass-baritone" which really means that because most of my singing experience comes from being in ensembles rather than private, focused vocal study, I have no idea how to use my head voice and sing practically everything in chest; I have a sneaking suspicion I would end up being a true baritone or even a low tenor after several years of focused, serious voice training based on how my low range actually sounds, but the flip side is that I can actually croak out low notes even if they're inaudible unless I've been binge-drinking the night before so I dunno. But yeah, I've always sung low.

"Bellini." (DJP), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 18:17 (eight years ago) link

(which is actually why, in my teens, I realized I was never going to be a pop or rock singer, and why I was so taken by the grunge explosion)

"Bellini." (DJP), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 18:18 (eight years ago) link

putting the last touches on my new record (doesn't feel new, been working on it for about 15 months now) to send to mastering next week, figuring out how to put it out.

then i want to take some time to switch up my process, shake things up a little. work on some new synth sounds without any goals, try to finally learn ableton, record a bunch of new percussion samples. i want to take some piano lessons too, since i do everything with midi + mouse. i can figure stuff out on piano very sloooowly, so i thought it would be fun to play through some tunes in real time and get some chords under my fingers.

honestly though i probably won't do most of these things and i'll go back to what feels easy & comfortable. :/

queeple qua queeple (Jordan), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 18:51 (eight years ago) link

I just got our first track back from the studio. I love it and I also cringe a bit because I can hear bits where my voice goes a bit wrong or a beat doesn't quite land how it's meant, and I'm trying to work out if anyone in their right mind would really notice or care.

dog latin, Tuesday, 5 March 2013 18:57 (eight years ago) link

roxy high school is an amazing band name

flopson, Tuesday, 5 March 2013 18:58 (eight years ago) link

this is a neat thread idea.

i've been playing with a couple guys for the last month or so but it's just working out that well. they seem like they really want to sound like real estate or something, which isn't terrible, but a bad real estate impersonation comes out sounding reaaaaally bad, and it's not much fun to play drums to, either!

i've been writing and recording some new tunes, which doesn't sound like much but it's actually been a big breakthrough for me after about a 10 year songwriting/music coma that i didn't realize was a coma.

i'm moving back to chicago in a few months and i'm determined to join up with a good band. i used to be good friends with the cave/bitchin bajas scene so i'm hoping i can be looped back into all that stuff and that someone needs a good drummer

( ( ( ( ( ( ( (Z S), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 19:05 (eight years ago) link

and yeah, high school is good, although i have to say i liked it even more when i thought the name was high school??

( ( ( ( ( ( ( (Z S), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 19:05 (eight years ago) link

haha

flopson, Tuesday, 5 March 2013 19:08 (eight years ago) link

whoa z s do you want to be in a band with me?

congratulations (n/a), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 19:10 (eight years ago) link

this is going to be really awkward when you reject me

congratulations (n/a), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 19:10 (eight years ago) link

well, that was easy. sure, let's play!

it's gonna be more like september or so

( ( ( ( ( ( ( (Z S), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 19:12 (eight years ago) link

i think we are gonna be called "high school"??
a
I started a band in college called junior high university. I recorded one song for it and we had two practices and then everyone split up in different directions. that was the last band I was ever in.

have not touched my recording computer since my son was born. I long for a classical acoustic guitar so i can play around the house but I have no money for that now. debating selling an amp or two. I think my creative well has run dry for the foreseeable future.

we're beautiful like robots in dis guys (m bison), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 19:19 (eight years ago) link

i'm really burnt out on school this semester & have been slacking off to spend more time doing music stuff. all three bands i'm in are pretty active rn which can be overwhelming at times but is really fun. most notably i went on tour in january and started a new band called l0ud s3x which i am just so, so stoked on. the other songwriter in the band is really prolific and i really want to keep our ratio of songs 1:1. it's been a really fun challenge trying to keep up, he also writes amazing songs so i've had to be really strict about scrapping my tunes if they're not up to par. we're playing our first show at the end of the month & i'm pretty nervous because not everyone shows up for practice consistently and i want it to be spectacular

flopson, Tuesday, 5 March 2013 19:21 (eight years ago) link

sp3ctacular l0ud s3x

( ( ( ( ( ( ( (Z S), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 19:25 (eight years ago) link

I am not going to go into any more detail than this but the biggest audition opportunity of my lap literally just fell into my lap; I fully expect it to go nowhere but still, you never know...

"Bellini." (DJP), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 19:28 (eight years ago) link

would watch n/a z s band

flopson, Tuesday, 5 March 2013 19:29 (eight years ago) link

DJP on x factor, it's America has been waiting for
xp

we're beautiful like robots in dis guys (m bison), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 19:29 (eight years ago) link

l0ud high school s3x

queeple qua queeple (Jordan), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 19:32 (eight years ago) link

the biggest audition opportunity of my lap

lol dan

queeple qua queeple (Jordan), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 19:33 (eight years ago) link

oh no, I've said too much

"Bellini." (DJP), Tuesday, 5 March 2013 19:34 (eight years ago) link

I am in month 15 of releasing a home-made recording every month. A lot of times I put it off until the month is almost over and then go into crunch mode. But at this point, even though I approach each song as its own thing and wasn't trying to make an album or anything, I can listen to all the tracks straight through and it sounds really cohesive to me, which I think is really cool. I also feel like I get a little better/more efficient at production each time.

I haven't performed onstage in like a year though, which was a conscious decision and I don't miss all of the bullshit that made me sick of doing it, but I do miss being onstage. But I maybe just joined a band that I actually think is really good and is kind of successful locally, which is cool because I don't feel that way about hardly any local bands and also I've never really been in someone else's band. They have kind of a Modern Lovers/Beat Happening/Magnetic Fields/Morrissey vibe. It'll also be neat because I'll be playing synth and I'm not actually a keyboard player at all, I'm a guitarist and songwriter, but that's also why I'll be a good fit for this.

St3ve Go1db3rg, Tuesday, 5 March 2013 21:33 (eight years ago) link

kicking off recording of a new album. finally a chance to properly use all this new synth gear

the history of mom's apple pie (electricsound), Wednesday, 6 March 2013 00:49 (eight years ago) link

Hey all - could I get a little bit of constructive feedback on this please? We've had an initial "how's this?" from the studio engineer on one of our tracks. Overall, I think it's okay but it's very difficult to distance myself and listen to it with uninvolved ears.

I'd really like to hear your thoughts, particularly on the mixing/production (we can't really go back into the studio to do any overdubs or retakes so we're working with the raw material we have, for better or worse). Are there any glaring errors on this track or things I should mention before I get back to him? One thing I noticed is that he's been a bit heavy handed witht he gating and compression, particularly some of the vocal parts where the sibilants and plosives are almost non-existent.

I'm only gonna keep this track online for a short while, but if someone could give it a listen and let me know their thoughts, i'd be very much obliged: https://soundcloud.com/doglatin/honolulu-demo-050313

dog latin, Wednesday, 6 March 2013 11:36 (eight years ago) link

god this sounds like a super harsh thing but i dont mean it that way - do you want/intend the beginning to sound like a 80's nylons style acapella group thing? like exactly like one? because thats what i hear. also some pitchy weirdness in the "so afraid" "yesterday" multivoice responses. again, if these are intentional things, no prob.

O_o-O_O-o_O (jjjusten), Wednesday, 6 March 2013 16:49 (eight years ago) link

Lol, I haven't hear the nylons but it is supposed to be a bit of a tongue in cheek doowop thing and if it comes across that way I guess that's intentional. The song is very much a comment on retro culture and so it's littered with 60s and 80s references. Cheers for checking it out jjjusten, I'll look into the autotune thing. Think the sound guy's gone a bit overboard with vocal manipulation, but then we're not at all trained singers so there's undoubtably gonna be a push/pull thing going on.

dog latin, Wednesday, 6 March 2013 17:29 (eight years ago) link

song sounds good to me, esp. for a demo. i like it.

congratulations (n/a), Wednesday, 6 March 2013 17:30 (eight years ago) link

Xpost If you're talkin about Housemartins/Flying Pickets, I def see what you mean and kind of don't mind. I (was made to) grow up with that shit, haha.

dog latin, Wednesday, 6 March 2013 17:31 (eight years ago) link

Cheers n/a

dog latin, Wednesday, 6 March 2013 17:32 (eight years ago) link

I am making a lil album of songs that are about a min long each, I have about 10 so far where the music is done but I have finished singing over one of them, I've come up w/ vocal melodies for about 3

puff puff post (uh oh I'm having a fantasy), Wednesday, 6 March 2013 17:47 (eight years ago) link

I am seriously using the dumbest most unwieldy out of date programs to put the songs together because for whatever reason I like how it all sounds more than if I do it in ableton?

puff puff post (uh oh I'm having a fantasy), Wednesday, 6 March 2013 17:54 (eight years ago) link

what are you using?

queeple qua queeple (Jordan), Wednesday, 6 March 2013 18:13 (eight years ago) link

I (lol) am using cues in virtual dj to play my laptop like an mpc or w/e (I could slice to a drumkit in ableton and do the same thing I guess, but idk, when I use ableton I spend 3 extra hours on shit) and then editing shit further and recording vocals in audacity, its a forehead in my hands deal, but still

puff puff post (uh oh I'm having a fantasy), Wednesday, 6 March 2013 18:22 (eight years ago) link

i love stuff like that.

queeple qua queeple (Jordan), Wednesday, 6 March 2013 18:28 (eight years ago) link

well I hope it lives up to its rudimentary description, I'm starting to embrace it, at least this way I don't end up fucking around with corpus for a week with no results

puff puff post (uh oh I'm having a fantasy), Wednesday, 6 March 2013 18:35 (eight years ago) link

Good sounding demo, dog latin. I'd get some friends in a room for the backing vocals. And as for your solo performance it's a little too measured, just make sure you're saying "gate" instead of "gay" and make it fast and effortless

a) tepid b) vapid c) simpering d) milquetoast (flamboyant goon tie included), Wednesday, 6 March 2013 19:18 (eight years ago) link

I was just in Prague recording with a budget-priced orchestra, stuff for five different clients and some stuff for my own use. There were 30 "pieces" ranging from 45-second long bits of orchestral incidental music to 20-minute marathon workouts. A total of 2.5 hours of music and 24 hours to record the whole thing. I def. got paranoid and overworked but I didn't break. I drove that bus.

It went very well but I instinctively prioritized the work of my clients, taking the time to really get something beautiful out of that shaky orchestra. I left not enough time for my own material. Now I'm futzing.

a) tepid b) vapid c) simpering d) milquetoast (flamboyant goon tie included), Wednesday, 6 March 2013 19:22 (eight years ago) link

cheers FGTI - I did the lead vox, the others did backing. I think the engineer's but too strong a release on my vox because yeah, "gaze" sounds like "gay" etc...

dog latin, Wednesday, 6 March 2013 23:42 (eight years ago) link

i'm listening to spotify

markers, Wednesday, 6 March 2013 23:42 (eight years ago) link

gotta get these tapes out soon (for this band i recorded) but have no idea what im doing! i need to buy a tape duplicator! i need to buy...tapes! i need to figure out how to get this shit onto a master tape! what am i doing with my life! HELP!

purp (roxymuzak), Thursday, 7 March 2013 00:58 (eight years ago) link

i told my mom i was in a new band called high school and she recommended that we call it COOL GIRLS instead. additionally, "i like just a girl's name, like maureen, or mabel, for a girl band"

purp (roxymuzak), Thursday, 7 March 2013 01:01 (eight years ago) link

lmao at cool girls altho tbh i would like it as a name for a coed or all dude band

purp (roxymuzak), Thursday, 7 March 2013 01:01 (eight years ago) link

Punching walls is gross — you don’t want to be that guy imo. I have seen people do it and it’s never agl. I have faith you can do more effective performance art!

weird woman in a bar (La Lechera), Monday, 12 July 2021 20:01 (three weeks ago) link

i have busted a few walls and have never felt good about it. it's not wise.

Yours in Sorrow, A Schoolboy: (forksclovetofu), Monday, 12 July 2021 20:55 (three weeks ago) link

I just make the wall feel bad about itself by bringing up its shortcomings.

trial by wombat (Ye Mad Puffin), Monday, 12 July 2021 21:59 (three weeks ago) link

same. really give that wall something to think about

J Edgar Noothgrush (Joan Crawford Loves Chachi), Tuesday, 13 July 2021 12:42 (three weeks ago) link

thank y'all for the kind words btw it's intense right now!! appreciated

J Edgar Noothgrush (Joan Crawford Loves Chachi), Tuesday, 13 July 2021 12:43 (three weeks ago) link

You'll be grand, JCLC. I recognise the mania/cliff-dive thing (even though I have never toured anywhere near as much as you) - it's a lot of work keeping the old brain stable, but it is worth it to do that thing you love.

And good luck, Z!

emil.y, Tuesday, 13 July 2021 13:56 (three weeks ago) link

amazing how much irregular sleep patterns just tear through all the defenses you've built up in your head, brain just wants to consume itself, it's rad. i have never been on tour and fear it for this reason, as much as shows are objectively awesome. psyched you're going back on the road jclc and i hope maybe the stability you've reached had home can be exported to the tour somehow

STOCK FIST-PUMPER BRAD (BradNelson), Tuesday, 13 July 2021 14:02 (three weeks ago) link

my band is playing our first show next month and we got one of my favorite bands to hop on the bill and not only do i love playing shows, i love playing the best shows ever with bands that rule

STOCK FIST-PUMPER BRAD (BradNelson), Tuesday, 13 July 2021 14:03 (three weeks ago) link

our first show since the pandemic* i mean

STOCK FIST-PUMPER BRAD (BradNelson), Tuesday, 13 July 2021 14:06 (three weeks ago) link

Good luck Steve Ty. I was talking to a friend who's band tours Europe a few times a year, he was feeling anxiety because he's become extremely attached to his daily routine over the last year and a half. It definitely seems like a wild leap to go from being home all day every day > going on tour, compared to going back to the office or whatever.

change display name (Jordan), Tuesday, 13 July 2021 14:50 (three weeks ago) link

BradNelson is the other band the Buff Boys competition

not up to Aerosmith standards (Neanderthal), Tuesday, 13 July 2021 14:54 (three weeks ago) link

I've got a cute gig next week for a friend's mom's 60th birthday party. Apparently she's super into yacht rock, David Benoit, Steve Winwood, Go West, etc and we're playing a corresponding set. Her taste makes sense given that her two sons are bass & piano virtuosos along similar lines.

I used to play with them a ton in college, so I can't wait to play with some excellent musicians without any backing tracks, lol. Looking forward to the rehearsal as much as the gig. It's been fun to learn the tunes even if I hate most it (looking at you Steely Dan), lol.

change display name (Jordan), Tuesday, 13 July 2021 14:54 (three weeks ago) link

BradNelson is the other band the Buff Boys competition

― not up to Aerosmith standards (Neanderthal), Tuesday, July 13, 2021 7:54 AM (one minute ago) bookmarkflaglink

sippin' mai-tais at the rochambeau

STOCK FIST-PUMPER BRAD (BradNelson), Tuesday, 13 July 2021 14:56 (three weeks ago) link

(currently superstitious that if i name the other band they'll abruptly drop off the lineup)

STOCK FIST-PUMPER BRAD (BradNelson), Tuesday, 13 July 2021 14:57 (three weeks ago) link

lol understood - no need to namedrop!

not up to Aerosmith standards (Neanderthal), Tuesday, 13 July 2021 15:00 (three weeks ago) link

jordan that gig sounds like a blast!!!

STOCK FIST-PUMPER BRAD (BradNelson), Tuesday, 13 July 2021 15:32 (three weeks ago) link

good luck everyone! i am confident that you will all RULE

(i don't have a gig or anything planned. i do have the idea that i would like to be one of the many who attempt to carry on laurie anderson's torch in some way. so i've been thinking about that. i could probably skip the work and just get myself a gig at the ren. faire as the buffoon who gets dropped into a tank of sludge if you can throw a tomato into his face)

Z_TBD (Karl Malone), Tuesday, 13 July 2021 17:07 (three weeks ago) link

km let me know if you want to collab on something. i love laurie anderson and while i don't really have the energy to spearhead my own projects at this point, i could probably handle being a mysterious contributor to someone else's project.

na (NA), Tuesday, 13 July 2021 17:28 (three weeks ago) link

yeah that sounds fun! it would be great to get together in LL's basement again if she's up for it!

i have a bunch of other (non-drum) equipment that i would like to play with, too

Z_TBD (Karl Malone), Tuesday, 13 July 2021 17:39 (three weeks ago) link

I’m still learning to play the piano. It’s still hard. Probably nobody has ever done it.

Clara Lemlich stan account (silby), Wednesday, 14 July 2021 02:31 (three weeks ago) link

Agreed I'm pretty sure it can't be done

change display name (Jordan), Wednesday, 14 July 2021 03:36 (three weeks ago) link

Catching up, that backing track gig sounds like a nightmare, Jordan. Why was it necessary to play to a backing track in the first place?

Sequel to Sadness (Sund4r), Thursday, 15 July 2021 23:36 (two weeks ago) link

Oh nm, I just realized you probably meant that there were backing tracks audible to the audience that everyone had to be in time with, not just that you had to be synchronized to a track in your ear.

Sequel to Sadness (Sund4r), Thursday, 15 July 2021 23:37 (two weeks ago) link

Yeah exactly, all the Prince drum machine parts, plus half the keyboard parts & backing vocals that the band can't be relied upon to have covered/execute depending on who's there, lol

change display name (Jordan), Friday, 16 July 2021 00:01 (two weeks ago) link

It will forever haunt me

change display name (Jordan), Friday, 16 July 2021 00:02 (two weeks ago) link

you could take your mind off of it by undertaking the unbearably tedious and dull task of composing a DJ mix in ableton, as i have!

i'm gonna finish this, eventually, but i swear i will never do another mixtape in a DAW again. god i need to get some new decks, this sucks.

davey, Friday, 16 July 2021 20:17 (two weeks ago) link

I doubt I'll go back to doing them, but I feel like I got a pretty good workflow going for ableton DJ mixes after a couple tries a few months back

Mr. Cacciatore (Moodles), Friday, 16 July 2021 22:35 (two weeks ago) link

i'd be curious to hear if you wouldn't mind elaborating a bit. all i'm doing dropping files into 2-3 audio channels with EQ and time-fx on the sends. getting the automation just right has turned out to be a slog... i should probably setup a controller and map it, duh.

i also realized just a few minutes ago that it's even more of a slog because the mix i'm working on isn't the vibe. i've been planning it for a while and think it'll be good when i finish it, but it's just not the vibe for this moment. gonna put it on the backburner and work on something more joyful.

davey, Friday, 16 July 2021 23:22 (two weeks ago) link

Big thing for me was getting everything warped and set to similar gain levels first before trying to mix them together.

I added EQ 3 to both of my tracks for the mix and use a lot of the parabolic curves for bringing EQ and volumes up and down.

Those are the main things but could possibly answer other questions.

Mr. Cacciatore (Moodles), Saturday, 17 July 2021 00:02 (two weeks ago) link

thank you, moodles, for the nice reply. our workflows are very similar! i check gain levels thru a meter as i add tracks into the mix, and automate volume to adjust. maybe i'll reconsider that. drawing in all the automation curves is what takes a long time for whatever reason (probably overthinking), and that gets frustrating when i know i could feel the fades out very easily with a proper DJ mixer & decks. working in the DAW lets me overthink the track sequencing, too.

one rly cool affordance of this fiddly way of doing it, though: having multiple tracks let me make quick/EZ edits to shorten tracks or program mixes better. probably what's killing me is that i'm overthinking the sequencing a lot. i want to top my last few mixes, which i think are my best in 20+ years DJing, and that sets the bar perhaps unfairly high for myself.

davey, Saturday, 17 July 2021 10:47 (two weeks ago) link

moodles, how do you go about measuring gain for yr tracks? i'm just looking at... i think it's RMFS, or the measurement for perceived loudness, at a few points in the track

davey, Saturday, 17 July 2021 11:15 (two weeks ago) link

Make sure track faders are always set to the same position and then either use the visual cue of the track volume control meter or you can look at the track peak dB, which can be reset to 0 at any point by clicking on it. Then adjust the clip gain until the track is hitting your preferred max dB.

As far as drawing curves, you can highlight an automation lane, right-click and then get a menu of curves. For DJ mixes, the parabolic curves will almost always suit you best. I'll typically put a curve on either track volume or a particular eq band on one track, then put the opposite curve on the same eq band on the other track, then adjust as needed.

Mr. Cacciatore (Moodles), Saturday, 17 July 2021 12:50 (two weeks ago) link

ty ty

DAW mixtape workflow just feels so... unnatural. i DJ'd out for the first time in like 18 months, tonight, and i think it was a personal best. and it would've taken me probably several long days to do it in Ableton to my satisfaction, so probably i'll take a shot at recording a mix proper on CDJ decks. if i can find them. my studio-mates were supposed to provide a DJ controller/mixer for our space. so i'm gonna harangue them to follow through with that, and i'll come back to the DAW if it doesn't work out.

davey, Sunday, 18 July 2021 15:45 (two weeks ago) link

Yeah, despite all of my advice, I'm getting better results with a DJ controller and it's less of a pain in the ass and slow process. I'm less experienced, so there will inevitably be fuck ups in there, but I'm still happier because I have so much more control over stuff like EQs and filters, so I can do more interesting stuff on the fly.

Mr. Cacciatore (Moodles), Sunday, 18 July 2021 16:49 (two weeks ago) link

learning to mix on a controller/mixer is worth the time. all the little old-school fader and FX tricks i was doing to would be stupid hard to do in a DAW, and it is just flat-out faster.

i'm not using a controller's sync function. it eliminates the attentional overhead of beat-matching and lets you focus on other stuff—but that's IF and only if you have carefully set up the grid of all yr tracks to be on the beat, and i've found rekordbox rly counterintuitive in that regard so i just use my ears. (btw i despise the Pioneer DJ brand for a number of reasons, but that's a rant for another thread.)

anyway i kinda like hearing little slip-ups and imperfections in a DJ mix, even in pre-recorded/studio mixes. DJ mixing can definitely to be too smooth and a few slip-ups are rly kind of endearing if the DJ is good enough to fix them live in the mix.

davey, Sunday, 18 July 2021 17:12 (two weeks ago) link

^^^ i'm not *against* ppl using the sync function

davey, Sunday, 18 July 2021 17:12 (two weeks ago) link

I have a cheap Pioneer controller, working on getting more accurate with beatmatching, but using sync on recordings, and probably would do the same at a gig for now. It's very helpful to have max time for tweaking EQs and nudging tempos. I've actually had pretty good experience with grids in rekordbox, but I'm doing mostly 4 on the floor beats, so that's probably easier to nail down. Maybe 20% of tracks need small grid tweaks, but that's way better than the performance of warp in Ableton, which is always super fiddly.

Mr. Cacciatore (Moodles), Sunday, 18 July 2021 17:24 (two weeks ago) link

Good luck tech-heads

My beloved acoustic trio is no more, as the singer has moved to Austin.

I have made some solo appearances here and there, and some side projects. One of these (a country-rock duo) has to fill 2.5 hours at a pub on Saturday, and this is a decided shift from my usual 20 or 30 minute gig. We have worked up like 40 songs, and it is fun but tiring.

trial by wombat (Ye Mad Puffin), Monday, 19 July 2021 01:28 (two weeks ago) link

break a leg! 40 songs is a nice big repertoire.

davey, Monday, 19 July 2021 07:17 (two weeks ago) link

Thanks

One thing I'm trying to do is play the bouzouki more. It's fun but weird - jangly and loud. There are some keys/chords that I just can't really play comfortably because of the scale length, so I revert to the mandolin.

I don't like it alongside guitar (too much of the same sonic territory), but it pairs interestingly with bass and percussion.

trial by wombat (Ye Mad Puffin), Monday, 19 July 2021 19:58 (two weeks ago) link

i work on songs so slowly now that i'm generally working on one song (at the most) at a time. what that means is that from inception until completion, i have that one song in my head most of the time. like a persistent earworm that lasts for a week or two (or longer). not a humblebrag "man my songs are SO catchy!" just the process of thinking about this one song and playing it/recording it/listening to it over and over, while rewarding, can also be very annoying.

na (NA), Wednesday, 21 July 2021 15:02 (two weeks ago) link

I've been feeling increasingly frustrated with Ableton and my current setup. My main gripe is that I spend too much time pointing and clicking and trying to scroll through endless menus of sounds, while I'd rather feel like I'm playing an instrument. I do like some of Ableton's instruments, especially Operator, Wavetable, and Collision, but even with those, it seems like you have to jump through endless hoops to get an acceptable sound. By the time I get there, my enthusiasm is just not enough to get anything completed.

So I'm trying to figure out how to revamp my setup to be more user friendly, get me away from the mouse, and feel like I'm actually jamming. My current setup includes one of the original Akai APC40s and a generic 49 key midi keyboard. I think I could probably replace both of those with something like the Novation Launchkey 25 and free up tons of real estate on my desk without losing much functionality, but I don't know if that would add much either. Would this be a worthwhile change? Does anyone on here have experience with the Novation keyboards?

Once I do that, what then? I've pondered looking into analog synth rigs and drum machines, and just bailing on Ableton instruments for the most part, but I'm not convinced that's necessary or worth the cost and time to learn. Are there other steps I could take to build a more intuitive and interactive experience?

Mr. Cacciatore (Moodles), Sunday, 25 July 2021 00:32 (one week ago) link

I'm not an Ableton user but what's really helped me in REAPER is having track templates for basic synth/piano/organ/DI guitar/drum machine. That way I can insert a template, play what I want immediately with the minimum of configuration, and then go back and change the sound later.
Even though I'm not much of a keyboard player, I wouldn't swap a 49 key controller for a 25 key one. My current keyboard is also 49 keys, and I've got it under my desk with two A4 file boxes under each end. So not ergonomic at all but I can bring it forward enough to play it and push the keyboard back out of the way the rest of the time. Depending on your desk you might be able to retrofit a sliding keyboard shelf. I've considered doing this but a combination of laziness and being fairly tall (I'd probably be hitting my knees on it) has put me off.

Being cheap is expensive (snoball), Sunday, 25 July 2021 09:30 (one week ago) link

The thing about the keyboard is that I'm not really much of a piano player. I use it only to either dink out little melodies or bang out drum patterns.

Anyway, after all this bellyaching, I started digging into lots of Push 2 videos on YouTube, and realized it does most of the things I'm looking for: it's fairly compact, can be used as drum machine and keyboard, can lookup patches and effects, edit samples, tweak parameters clearly, etc. So I snapped one up on ebay that is supposedly in mint condition. Guess we'll find out soon enough!

Mr. Cacciatore (Moodles), Sunday, 25 July 2021 10:33 (one week ago) link

re: Ableton workflow

I've been really enjoying the All You Need is Live YouTube channel, his focus is mainly on Techno, but he does many tutorials about how to use racks to streamline your workflow that I think would apply to any type of music. Here's a couple that I'm planning to try out, the comments have links to download the racks.

This shows how to build a master drum rack that holds all your favorite samples for each common drum voice (kick, snare, hats, etc), which you can than very quickly swap in and out with the turn of a knob.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BuPHTaG_4LE

This shows you how to build a rack for Operator that randomly generates new cool sounding patches.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ElMcWEy2xLY

Mr. Cacciatore (Moodles), Wednesday, 28 July 2021 19:45 (one week ago) link

Thanks, those look super useful!

DJI, Thursday, 29 July 2021 12:12 (six days ago) link

If you've got the money I'd strongly recommend getting a Push for Ableton. Making music using that is so much easier and more fun than using the mouse and keyboard.

paolo, Friday, 30 July 2021 09:43 (five days ago) link

https://www.ableton.com/en/push/

paolo, Friday, 30 July 2021 09:44 (five days ago) link

Can confirm, even after a couple days, it feels like a massive improvement.

Mr. Cacciatore (Moodles), Friday, 30 July 2021 12:24 (five days ago) link

glad to hear :) besides the audio interface, Push is the only hardware i fw anymore

davey, Saturday, 31 July 2021 05:12 (four days ago) link


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