Making Music #3: We’re In Another Heat Wave

Making Music is where I share the process as I write, arrange, record and release my music. You’ll get to read it all: what went well, what really didn’t, the decisions I had to make along the way, and why I made them. I hope you find it useful!

This week, conditions are against me, so I need to come up with a new plan.

Introduction

Last week was a good week. The project got started, and things got done. Not to a great standard, mind, but I’m hoping that’ll come with more practice.

I also came away with a TODO list as long as my arm. The list basically broke down into three groups:

  • creative decisions around arranging the song
  • prep work around practicing the song, re-learning the two lead melody parts, and improving my tools for the next performance
  • project decisions around what order to tackle things in

Tonight is Wednesday, 10th August. And conditions are against me tonight.

Moving The Session To A Different Slot

I’ve made one decision after last week: I’m going to try and do these sessions on Wednesday nights from now on, instead of Thursday nights.

Something has come up, and I need to spend Thursday nights doing something else instead.

This happens.

As much as we all love our music, it’s a hobby for many of us. It has to fit around other things in our life. There’ll be times when it can take priority, and times when it’s not the most important thing going on.

What Do You Mean, Conditions Are Against You Tonight?

Here in the UK, we’re experiencing a second summer heat wave. Today is going to be the coolest day of the rest of the week – and it’s definitely ‘hide indoors from the sun’ weather today.

Unfortunately, my little Hermit’s Cave catches all the afternoon soon. It’s cool on a morning (which is handy, because that’s when I’m working), but come 2pm, the temperature starts to rise pretty quickly.

It’s bearable in here, as long as I don’t turn on any amps and the like. But it does mean that, whatever I choose to do tonight, I won’t be capturing it in any DAW.

It’s Time To Listen

I’m not any nearer making any of the creative decisions that I listed last week. So, tonight, I’m going to put that old recording of Ragged Perceptions on repeat, and just spend time listening to it.

While I’m listening, I’m going to imagine what the song might sound like with a bass track. I’m going to imagine what the song might sound like with some form of percussion.

This is a technique sometimes called The Theatre of the Mind.

The basic idea is to form the outcome, in its final glory, in your mind. Once you’ve got that, you then work backwards, deconstructing it into its constituent parts.

I’ve used this in my work (and in other hobbies) for many years now. It’s something that I used to be able to do with music – but I’m more than a little out of practice at it, I must admit.

I’ll let you know how I get on next week.

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