Friday, November 6, 2009
Tools for Restarting
I still had some songwriter studio from a former life and my initial intent was to not "gear up" as this what I have a tendency to want to do when starting anything new (or renew); you know, like beginning to exercise - buy all the stuff you "need" then it ends up in the closet for 20 years. I had a recently (within the last couple years) purchased a Fostex MR16 - a digital recorder pictured here. I already had leftovers to get started, like a Roland Workstation (pretty dated, but still may work fine for me), an Ovation acoustic/electric a great set of headphones and a rack effects.
Of course, my efforts to remain in the status quo did not work out and as any musician will tell you, I'm still in transition and acquiring as I can. I wasn't happy with bass sounds I was getting through my keyboard, so I purchased a used Schecter Bass. My mic broke (I dropped the damn thing) so I was "forced" to buy a new one - but much better and worth the dollars - a Sterling ST55. Wow, big, big upgrade - I'm really pleased so far. Since I used to do mostly acoustic, I had no electric capabilities for guitar so, the next adventure - I'm borrowing an electric until I find one that is versatile, perfect and affordable. Meanwhile, I want to record direct, so I needed some amp sounds with a pre-amp for the guitar. I just got a Line 6 POD, which so far, seems to be able to do what I want.
Now, with all this stuff, I still have to perform well enough to get clean sounds on a recording. I'm working my aged chops and I think this will take some time. I do see and hear glimmers of hope so I will trudge forward. By the way, it took me about 2 weeks to quit having finger-tip pain that made me stop playing. Now I'm spending more quality time playing and kicking my fingers' butt.
I am finding so far that a generally good approach to this overall process is to write at least a couple times a week if not daily. I've been connecting up with a buddy to help with ideas and expanding my playing field (fun too). Play every day to help improve on the instruments and voice. Record a little every day to be able to listen back for likes and dislikes as well as areas of improvement and needed work. Don't rush. It'll take some time, just keep enjoying the process. So far, I'm loving it with minimal frustrations - mostly do to getting myself back in musical shape. So far, so good . . .