Monday, June 21, 2010

Music madness!

I just counted the projects I have on the go. I currently have:

6 songs with lyrics
2 songs minus lyrics
2 cover songs
1 song I'm working on with another musician
3 edits (or remixes, if you prefer that term...although I hardly think adding a beat to an oldie counts as a remix)

These are all in varying stages of the process, and it's becoming difficult to focus on just one thing. For instance, one of my songs just needs a couple lyrics re-recorded, before going through the whole mixdown process again. Another just needs to be mixed and mastered. So why am I procrastinating so much?

1. The more lyrical side of me is a side that only a couple people in my life have seen. Some of these songs were written over a decade ago, most far more recently; either way they are symbolic of me basically pouring out my heart, my hurt, my unrequited loves, my anger, and most of all my loneliness out to the world for all to hear. Some are about specific people in my life that I know will hear them. Even though they're still fairly ambiguous to anyone who wasn't in the loop, I still have to wonder if the person it was about will hear it and wonder if it's about them. Not quite sure if I'm ready for all that, even though I also believe it's long past due.

2. Time. Time, time, time! I work a full-time job with some shifts that don't leave me much chance for working on stuff when I'm home. Plus, I need to have a life outside of music and work. Unfortunately, this life tends to take over most of my free time. In fact, I just realized I'm going to be SUPER busy for the next month, with a trip to Calgary next weekend followed by a trip to Regina the week after for a concert, then Ness Creek Music Festival, then a trip to Edmonton. Whew! That, and more basic human functions such as sleeping and eating kinda take up too much time.

3. Lack of focus. I'll start working on something, get bored with it (or just tired of listening to it over and over again), then start working on something else until I'm completely drained. Then I just end up listening to all my old music just for fun. Or I'll write another song that I really want to get in the can while the lid's still open. Or I'll just do something else all together. These song projects are in addition to various other creative endeavors I'm on. I'm also working on a screenplay, a novel, a book, and various graphic projects.

4. My computer is 7 years old. And it's slooooow. I can make an entire song in a few hours if I chose to do so, but the mixdown and mastering process I currently use takes roughly 3 hours just to begin. I was hoping to get a new computer a few months ago, but I'm worried that in doing so I might lose some of the programs I currently use due to compatibility issues. With so much on the go right now, I don't want that to be an issue.

5. I'm my own worst critic AND a perfectionist. That's the biggest problem. I could make an entire song in a few hours, but then I sometimes spend anywhere from a week to a few months tweaking it, trying to make it sound better, etc. It's worse with the vocal tracks, since my voice is essentially another instrument and there are far too many possibilities with it. Sometimes I have to keep a checklist on stuff I want to change or that needs changing. This also ties in with #4: sometimes I'll have 'finished' a track, only to find the bassline is a bit off-key on one thing, or I don't like the kick or the hat. This usually calls for me to go back to step one and change, then start the process all over again. This also usually ends up with me deciding enough's enough...and leave it for a while.

6. What I like to call internet ADD. I get sidetracked all too easily by Facebook, email, and pretty much everything on the web (like this blog, for instance).

It's like looking at a huge mess and knowing that it needs to be cleaned up and tidied and put away, but not even knowing where to begin. Where is that clone machine when you need it?

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