Hard Songs are Hard

I did two rhythm guitar parts for 50/90 today. One was the one I did a couple of days ago that was too fast for me. I slowed the tempo and re-recorded the part. The other song was the only song in the pipeline that I hadn’t gotten to yet. There are only six songs. That’s not enough on day seven.

I also did one of the two remaining re-recording project songs. I don’t think I purposely saved the two hard songs for last, but it looks like it ended up that way. The one that’s done isn’t very good. The other one was only just started but I scrapped the little bit I did and will go back to it after taking a break.

Hard songs are hard to play.

Metal

If the kids on the playground ever ask you if you can write a metal song in 3/4 time, play them this song.

I mean, the answer is no… but this is in the ballpark I guess, if you squint a little… maybe.

I Wrote Something Too Hard for Me

It happens now and then, but I seem to have written something that’s too hard for me to actually play.

50/90 has six songs in progress right now. I put rhythm guitars on five of them today. I would have done six but my battery was down to 2%.

Song #2 started out with me noodling a bass guitar part in GarageBand on my iPad. I tried to play along with it today and it’s too fast for me to pick it in time. My left hand can do it. My right hand cannot. Not only that, but there are two sections to the song that are beyond me. It would be pathetic enough if it was just one phrase, but no… it’s two. Damn it.

Anyway, on top of the five rhythm guitar parts I recorded for 50/90, I also did two leads for the re-recording thing. Both of them triggered whatever it is that makes my hands hurt like hell when I play sometimes, and I ended up dumbing things down on both of them. One has a nice nasty fuzz box tone though, so there’s that at least.

Here’s the obligatory post-guitar-playing photo.

Another Song

I’m hoping to use my vacation day today to make a dent in the remaining Great 2015 Re-Recording Project today. I also hope to get some work done on the 50/90 front. Here’s a new mix of a song from 2014.

Two Music Projects

So many music projects!

50/90 started yesterday. I haven’t done a lot, but I have worked on it. I started a file with a couple of bass riffs yesterday, then first thing this morning I started another one, and then during one of my back-resting-lawn-mowing breaks I stared a third. Nothing special, and nothing really there to work with yet, but tiny progress has been made.

As for the re-recording project. There is one song that isn’t exactly re-recorded. When I added it to the project last year I took the original GarageBand file from the 2014 50/90 and just started redoing some of the tracks. The two MIDI instruments, the drums and bass, were actually still the same as the original recording. Today changed the drummer. I still need to re-record the bass. I also just put lead guitar onto that song and one other.

The cool thing about these two takes are that I am back to using two amplifiers. The 15 watt Fender Bassbreaker and the 15 watt Vox AC15 are both working together now. This was literally the reason I wanted to buy the AC15. It sounded pretty good to me.

Unfortunately, playing these lead parts set off whatever it is that is wrong with my left hand. Arthritis? Something like that. It hurt a lot and I had to take a break. When I came back I felt like it had slowed me down a little. Usually when that happens I just stomp on the wah and start strumming a lot. Rock and Roll, eh?

New Amp Stuff

The new (used) Vox AC15 has made it onto The Great 2015 Re-Recording Project! How’d it go?

Weirdly.

It’s different. I was having a struggle across the board. The guitar, the strings, the tone, the amp, everything seemed off tonight. My playing was less than stellar. I may end up redoing both of the songs I finished tonight.

Oh yeah, did I mention that I finished the tracking on two of the re-recording project songs? We’ll see if I am still happy tomorrow. Also, I want to mess with the drums on both of them and maybe redo the bass on both of them too. We’ll see.

The important point right now is that the new (used) AC15 is here and it has been recorded! WOOHOO

Car Music: Day Three

All eight songs planned for volume 1 of The Great 2015 Re-Recording Project have vocals! Are the newly recorded vocals better than the scratch vocals I recorded years ago so that I could just have them as a guide? No. They sound pretty much exactly the same. In fact, one of the goals of this project was to improve the performance over the original RPM/50-90/NaSoAlMo demos. Did I do that? No. The end result is going to sound exactly the same as all the other garbage I record.

I don’t care.

I did three songs today. I saved the easiest song for last. Mistake. The last time I sang that particular song was when I recorded a quick and dirty scratch take back when this whole thing started in 2015. I did the lead and the harmony. Today I cranked out the lead like I’d been practicing it for years (I haven’t. I literally just said I hadn’t sung the song since 2015). The harmony though….

It’s been five years. Was the highest note just a hair out of my range five years ago? It probably was. I probably had to squeak to get the scratch track down. Nothing in the intervening half-decade changed to make me be able to hit that one high note without hurting myself. If anything, my range is a touch smaller now and it’s even harder.

What is the moral of the story?

If you’re a musician………..

PRACTICE!

Here’s a picture of the clock from downtown, for no reason at all other than I drove past it 15 minutes ago.

Two Amps

None of it is actually hooked up yet, but once 50/90 starts up my demos will once again include a two amplifier rig. I did this for RPM back in February and it was sweet. This time it’s two 15 watt amps. I’m looking forward to working with this set up.