Firstly, this week I’m really excited that the new Life is Strange Fans music contest has been announced!

This has been in the works for quite a while, and I’m glad it has begun! I’m looking forward to seeing the entries, and I’m very much looking forward to helping someone buy some new audio gear. Home recording is one of my favorite things, and it will be a pleasure to help someone else to start on that journey.

Photo of the Week

My wife enjoys photography, and ever since we met I’ve been a fan of her photos. I asked her if she’d do a weekly photo for my blog, and we talked about doing a sort of “tools of the trade” series to start off with. So each week we’ll have a new photo highlighting some of my gear. Maybe/probably in a cool abstract sort of way. This week, one of my favorite guitar picks is featured. This particular pick is made by a company called Stoneworks. I have a number of these, and they are all beautiful, but I especially like this one. I’ve always seen it as sort of a factory with smoke rising, but with the back-lighting in this photo it looks more like a fire breathing dragon.

What I’m Working On

I wrote a song like, 6 months ago or so called Before It Gets Me. I was studying the album For Emma, Forever Ago by Bon Iver at the time. A lot of the songs on that album are tuned to A = 425, as opposed to the conventional A = 440. That fascinated me. So I tuned my guitar to A = 425 for Before It Gets Me. I also recorded the kick drum myself on my drum kit, which is the first time I’m using a “live” drum sound in one of my songs. I love how it turned out actually.

So anyway I came across this fully recorded and somewhat mixed song, and was like “this is awesome, why didn’t I release this?” It definitely needed some work, but I decided to make it my next project. I listened back over the song with my wife and she helped me discover which parts weren’t working. So I took out some of the percussion and extra guitars. Then I re-recorded the vocals because I’m a better singer now than I was 6 months ago, and added a bunch of extra harmonies to give it more of an eerie choral kind of feel. Today I started adding some atmospheric strings as well, to make the sound larger in certain parts.

What I’m Listening To

I listened to Sleeping At Last this week. If you haven’t heard of them, it’s basically just one guy, Ryan O’Neal. I don’t know a ton about him… he does do a podcast, and write blogs. I should probably look into that because he could be a good role model. He’s quite successful at getting his music placed in TV and movies. And what’s more, I think that some of his music is incredible. He combines these gorgeous, lush arrangements with meaningful lyrics and compelling vocals. I’d like to make music like this! And I’d like to make music that is worthy of TV, movie or game placements at some point in the future. I don’t feel like I’m quite there yet, but getting closer all the time.

I know that I posted it on Twitter once, but I’ll post it here again. This is my favorite song of his. It makes me cry pretty much every time I hear it. Hashtag goals.

Next Week

I think I could finish Before It Gets Me next week. I also have this Open Mic Night to prepare for, that I’m doing with Koethe. I don’t know if this is weird or not, but at any given time I can play very few songs, haha. I just forget them. So I will need to practice a bunch and stay sharp!

Have a lovely week!