Thinking Ahead

Holy crap, I’m fully vaccinated. Wow!

Now what?

Today is Thursday and I have a rough day at work ahead of me. Tomorrow is Friday and I have a rough day at work ahead of me. After that?

I don’t know.

The weekend… what can I do to dip my toe into the waters of normalcy? One of the cars needs an oil change. I can go to Valvoline and have it done without leaving the car. That’s a good option. The other car needs an inspection. I don’t know about that. That seems a little much for the first few days. Maybe next weekend.

There is one thing that is looming over all other things. One thing that, now that Jen got the hybrid inspected (thank you so much, my love!), needs to be done more than anything else…

A hair cut. Woah boy do I need a hair cut.

I don’t know if I’m ready for that yet. Being in a closed room with another person close enough to touch me? I don’t know if I’m ready for that yet.

Back inside the house there will be music. I want to bring the big Bassbreaker amp down cellar and bring up the Vox AC15 and use that on it’s own for a while. I bought it over the summer and I don’t think I’ve used it without a second amp for more than a couple of minutes. April’s music will be through just that amp. At least for a day or two before I change my mind again. I also want to put the 1×12 speaker cabinet back into the living room so Harry can play the electric piano through it. He’s been 100% headphones for long enough. Once all that stuff is done I have to write and record a song for the RPM site’s Record Every Month challenge. It’s month two and that’s way too soon to drop out.

Okay, so that’s Saturday. What about Sunday.

We haven’t worked out the logistics yet… but I think we’re going to see how we feel about a really long drive.

Woah!

GarageBand to the Rescue

Harry needed to record a piano piece for school. He was going to put his headphones up against his iPhone’s mic.

Oh no, my good sir. No.

I hooked him up to a two channel USB interface and got him up and running in GarageBand on his Mac.

He’s recording tracks like a pro* now.


*Okay, maybe not a pro. More like an avid amateur, like his step father.

Groovy.

Another Sort of New Song

I mixed another re-recording today. I don’t think I like it. It’s originally from the 2016 RPM Challenge when I wrote a bunch of songs about people dumb enough to believe the Earth is flat. This one was supposed to be part of an argument between a flat earther and a person with a brain. Five years ago it was the idiot point of view. When it came to re-recordings I couldn’t really use it out of context so I wrote new lyrics. Can you guess what they are about? I wish they were better. They really suck. The vocals suck too. The guitars are okay, I guess.

Music: MIA

I haven’t done any music this month. Well, I put new strings on my SG but that’s it. I still plan to contribute to the Record Every Month thing the RPM Challenge folks are doing. I just haven’t done anything for it yet. Have I been too busy? Am I burned out? Am I kind of in a rut? The answers are probably yes, yes, and yes. I don’t know.

I have a bunch of things that are ready to mix. Two from the last round of re-recordings, and a few leftover from last month. I could do those this weekend, but I’m at my parent’s house keeping an eye on my mother and I get nervous when I put the noise canceling headphones on. Is she going to call for me for something and I won’t hear it?

I’d like to get the ball rolling again this weekend, but it’s more likely I will just doom scroll twitter all day. You know, like you do.

No Top Wrap

I put strings on the SG today. As part of my jonzing for a Les Paul Junior I was thinking about top wrapping. That’s where you put the string through the tail piece backward and then wrap the string over the top of it. For Les Paul Juniors (and standards from 1953-1955, I think) the tail piece is also the bridge so top wrapping is required.

For guitars that have a separate bridge, like all three of my Gibsons, it’s not necessary but I thought what the hell. I did it for one string and then stopped. I would have needed to lower the tail piece for it to work and I didn’t want to do that today. I keep the tail low on the other two Gibsons. Maybe I’ll try it on one of those.

Also, is there anything more useless than these locking tuners? They really don’t do anything at all.

Syd Barrett’s Last Session

I’m not sure why I find myself diving back into Syd Barrett’s music again. It’s something I’m drawn toward every now and then and it’s alway’s painful. His music from mid-1967 on is just so tragic.

You have two singles and an album from Pink Floyd that are magic and then a few singles and unreleased (then) songs before they kicked him out. Then the two solo albums, an outtake collection and a smattering of previously unreleased things that are simply tragic in their lack of focus. Some of the post-acid-or-whatever-happened-to-him songs are still brilliant (Vegetable Man, Jugband Blues, Octopus, and Dominoes) but most of it is pitiable in an imagine-what-could-have-been sense.

We all knew there was an attempt at a third album in 1974 that died after a single session. After that we know he showed up to a Floyd session in ‘75 and no one recognized him, but that was it. Now thanks to the wonders of bootlegging and YouTube we can hear that ‘74 session and it is just as lost as we’d been lead to believe.

For starters, let’s just assume that this is what it claims to be. Who know if it is, right? Let’s just go with it.

This is the sound of someone who didn’t have a clue what to do with himself, noodling out ideas that were mostly just 12-bar blues riffs. It’s heartbreaking to listen to but at the same time it’s light years better than I expected it to be. Knowing this was out there, I always wondered why they didn’t include any of it on the Opel compilation. Now I know why. There is nothing useable here.

Lately I’ve been hearing about rumors of additional lost recordings. There’s a documentary where Joe Boyd says he had, and lost, a tape of Syd playing songs that likely ended up on his solo records. This was before the mental breakdown. Syd told him he had a pile of songs Floyd didn’t use and Boyd asked for a tape thinking he could give some songs to another band he was producing.

Also, David Gilmour’s ex-wife is said to have remembered Syd coming to their house and using David’s home studio. She recalled the timing being well after Syd’s final album and his very short lived band, Stars, but well before the final session in ‘74. The mind boggles at the thought of what he might have had in his head at that time.

Anyway, listening to this recording makes me sad for what could have been, but also happy for what was. Go give Astronomy Domine or See Emily Play a spin and bask in his very fleeting musical glory.