Pain Pain and More Pain

I put leads on four songs before work this morning. It was a bad experience in three ways. First, I am so rusty it’s embarrassing. Second, the interface problems left me on the verge of screaming in fury and frustration the whole time. Third, I have no callusses on my finger tips anymore and I am in searing, burning agony right now. I played for about 45 minutes and oh my god the finger tip pain.

Fun.

I have four songs to mix by the end of the day. I don’t have an album-in-a-month for September, but maybe I have an EP in a month? At the very least I’ll have my first RPM Challenge Record Every Month song since RPM ended in February. That’s nice. The four songs I have to pick from are AWFUL and the guitar playing is AWFUL and the singing is AWFULAWFULAWFUL, but at least they exist. I guess.

My iPad has a USB C input. I am thinking of trying to use one of my USB interfaces with the iPad to see if the same problems with lagging will happen on that machine. If not, then I can keep writing and recording without wanting to punch holes in the wall in furious angry anger as the input signal drops out for a fraction of a second and fucks up a solid take… again and again and again and again. That would be nice. If the iPad work around doesn’t work… I don’t know what I’ll do. I’ll need to upgrade to a faster USB interface but I most definitely do not have any money for that. Two kids in college, you know? Urgh.

Pics…

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USB C Hates Me

I did some music this morning. The infuriating problems I had with my interface yesterday were worse today. I used different cables and adapters and eventually used a different interface all together and it just kept getting worse. I don’t know what I am going to do. I did manage to get through guitars for one song and vocals for two, but it left me so effing mad, and the performances were complete shit.

There’s two pics though, so I guess that’s okay?

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Intermittent Latency

I got up early this morning to ensure I would be able to watch episode four of Andor while doing my walkies, and also sneak in some guitar playing before I had to punch into work. Success. Sort of.

I added two rhythm guitar tracks to one song and one to another. I didn’t use my amp, I plugged directly into the USB interface and used an amp sim. Somehow doing so exacerbated a problem I have been having every now and then and made it almost impossible to get anything done.

I have a newish, M1 Mac. It’s generally lightning fast. When using GarageBand though, every now and then there will be a random, split second of latency that throws off my timing. It doesn’t happen often, but it’s concerning.

Today, while using the amp sims, it was happening 2-3 times every 20 seconds or so. It was fucking infuriating. That plus my terrible rusty playing had me swearing at the screen and feeling generally pissed off. I Googled it to see if it was a thing, and there are a lot of mentions of latency but no clear reason or solution. I expect it has more to do with my USB interface going through a USB hub and an adapter, rather than something with the M1 chip, but who knows. Maybe I’ll mess with the cabling next time.

Anyway, here’s a couple of gitter pics.

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A rare look at the clip on headstock tuner that I am usually embarrassed to let people see.

Music… Finally

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It’s been almost two months since the last time I played guitar. I’ve been so wrapped up in rediscovering my camera obsession that I’ve nearly forgotten about my guitar obsession.

Now that the weather is starting to get cold and I’m running out of places I want to try to take pictures, it’s time to dive back into the music. With five days left in September, I am clearly not going to pull off an album this month. I might pull off a single though. I wrote two really simple song ideas today. Music will happen, if it kills me.

Given the situation though, it might be safe to expect the bombardment of post-playing guitar pictures will be from the DSLR so the image quality (though not the megapixel count) could be improved. Here’s hoping, at least.

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Yes, Virginia

Why yes, Virginia. There will be car music tomorrow. Assuming I can get up early enough. It’s been over a month. Maybe closer to two months. I wrote a melody and some ultra shitty lyrics to three of the six songs that are in progress right now. I will try to add vocals tomorrow.

Wish me luck!

Friday at Last

It wasn’t really a long week, but now that we’re up to Friday it suddenly feels like a long week. Eight hours and 11 minutes to go until the weekend. Who’s ready?

I was hoping for some car music today but I didn’t get a chance to write any lyrics last night. Maybe tomorrow. The plan as it stands now is to go to see a matinee of the new Thor movie tomorrow. That is both exciting and nervy. It will be our first visit to a movie theater since the pandemic started. That’s why we’re going to the first showing of the day. We’re hoping the place will be empty. We’ll see.

I thought about asking the bariatric surgery facebook group about the pros and cons of small amounts of popcorn, but then I re-declared the facebook boycott so… yeah. I’ll stick to water, thanks. Wicked smaht there, Robert.

I am going to visit my mother tonight. Hopefully I’ll get there once or twice more over the weekend. I need to stop by Dad’s too. We’ll see how things shake out.

I want to do some music, preferably car music and guitar playing and some lyric/melody/riff writing. The faux 50/90 is still happening, but I am about an astronomical unit* behind schedule. There are only six songs in the pipeline right now and none are even remotely close to finished. Also, July ends next week. I should have 13 songs complete by the end of the month. Not happening. Not even close. Still, it’s fun. I just need to get into the groove somehow. I was feeling pretty good on Wednesday. Let’s channel that and do some more.

Photography… I don’t know. Downtown Andover? Downtown Lowell? Boston and Cambridge? We’ll see. I want to have one or two more rolls finished (I have two finished now and one in progress) before I ship off to a lab somewhere, but that could take ages at this point. We’ll have to see.

Okay. Let’s get through the work day before we worry about any of this stuff. Happy Friday, folks!


*An astronomical unit is defined as the average distance between the Earth and the Sun. That is a perfectly accurate description of how far off the pace I am at the moment.