#RPM2019 Progress Reports Part 2

It’s time for another RPM Challenge progress report.  This one covers days five through 11…

Day Five

Two new songs sketched out.  Just music, no lyrics.  I’m up to 11 songs in progress now but somehow I’m starting to feel like I’m falling behind.  The lack of lyrics is already starting to weigh me down.

Day Six

Wrapping up day six.  I added all of the rhythm guitar parts to two songs.  No new ideas, no lyrics, no melodies, no vocals.  Better than nothing though.  One song has a lot of wah-wah, so there’s that, right?

Day Seven

I’m calling it a night a little early tonight.  I’m really tired, but I managed to get some real work done today.  I wrote lyrics and melody for three songs, and then recorded the vocals and added the lead guitars for all three songs.

The lyrics are crap, the melodies are cheap, the vocals are atrocious, and everything is as it always is.

As for the lead guitars… Back in December I decided to restrict myself to just three pedals.  A wah, a phaser, and a low gain overdrive.  No fuzz, no heavy dirt.  I wanted to do something different.  Well for rhythm guitars it sounds cool.  For leads I thought I would crank my amp and then push the gain with the overdrive pedal.  A good plan, but not very practical when people are home.  The result is I turned the gain on the pedal all the way up and went with that… and it’s not enough.  I need more gain to feel comfortable when I play leads.  I’m going to have to either add a fuzz pedal or redo the leads I recorded tonight at a time when I can let the tubes in the amp give me the gain I need.  I can live with this for now and if I don’t get a chance to fix it I will survive… we’ll see.

Day Eight

I was going to keep working for a while, but my wife is out at a bar with a friend and apparently there is an Elvis impersonator and she is texting me video clips and I just can’t even.

I mixed a song!  Officially one song complete.  At least until I decide to re-record the lead guitar.

Day Nine

I got a crap ton of work done today.

Last night I went to bed a little late and couldn’t sleep.  Around 12:30 AM I gave up and started noodling bass lines in GarageBand on my iPad.  By the time I had fallen asleep I had two songs worth of phrases.

When I woke up I watched the new episode of That Pedal Show on youtube and then started messing with the two new song ideas.  I wanted to expand them out into song full song forms.  When I was done with them I went to Trello.  It told me that I still had four songs in the ideas bucket that also needed to have song forms worked out.  So I took care of all four of them.

When I was done with that I was feeling pretty pleased with my day’s output so I wrote the music for another song.  At that point I had to run some errands and be a functioning adult.  Oh well.  Eventually I got home and could get back to music so I recorded the rhythm guitars for two songs.  Now looking at Trello again, I have one song finished, two songs ready to mix, four songs ready for lyrics and vocals, and seven songs ready for rhythm guitars.  That’s 14 songs in total.  Not bad for Day Nine.

I normally combine the RPM Challenge and FAWM, so 14 songs is my goal.  This year though I screwed things up for FAWM by using some riffs and changes and rough ideas that were worked out prior to February 1st.  As of now only eight of the 14 songs are FAWM worthy.  I had planned on skipping FAWM all together this year, but hey… I’m more than halfway there.  Maybe this year I make a double RPM album and finish FAWM while I’m at it.

Clearly I have reached the massively overconfident phase of the month.  I’m enjoying it while it lasts.  Eventually the panic will take over, as it always does.

Day 10

Just finished a mix.  I don’t know if I like it or not.  I’m kind of on the fence for the whole song.  Sometimes I really dig it, sometimes… eh?

It’s in 7/8 time and it overuses the hell out of the wah pedal, so it ticks the major boxes for me.

My absolute favorite part of this song comes at 0:30, bar 19.  It’s just a D major 7 chord and it just really makes me happy.

Day 11

Today I recorded rhythm guitars for two songs.  After yesterday’s full output being one mix down, I feel like the pace has fallen off a cliff.

Two songs mixed
One song ready to mix
Six songs ready for vocals and lyrics
Five songs ready for rhythm guitars

The plan for tomorrow is to take on those five rhythm guitar parts.  If all goes according to plan, Wednesday will be vocals day and hopefully I will be able to get through all 11 remaining songs.  Thursday is up in the air, and it’s the last day of my mini-vacation/Six day weekend.

I’d still like to add some more songs if I can.  The goal is a 20 song double album.

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