Friday, August 10, 2007

flaky musicians

i am REALLY fucking sick of dealing with flaky musicians at the moment. the old cycle hath renewed. apparently people think that if they string me along long enough i won't notice that they don't give a shit about participating in the act of making music with me. i really don't understand this but i do know that it's happened an awful lot. someone will start playing music with me and after the initial fun at the beginning it turns into a laundry list of lame excuses as to why they can't practice, or can't play a show, or can't record or can't make up a part for a song but want to bitch about how their part is 'boring' rather than actually levelling with me and saying 'look, this really isn't my cup of tea.' i get really sick of having my time wasted by these people and i thought that it had been behind me years and years ago. stefanie isn't flaky, mind you- which is why we've been playing together for as long as we have and i have a tendency to expect too much of her, but i would like to take this opportunity to say that she is one of a handful of people i've played music with who give me enough respect to take my music seriously. she sings well on the songs she sings. she drums to the best of her abilities and makes a contribution in that regard to make my music better. she delivers the goods. billy is our cellist and a full member of the band as far as i'm concerned even though he lives in kansas city and will be for as long as he wants to. whenever i've recorded with billy he's always given his all and played the parts that are pre-written to a t, but with enough raggedness to give it some heart and passion and he's also come up with some incredibly beautiful lines on his own with no more guidance than a chord chart and made a contribution. but, man, the girl we're stuck with playing cello for us up here is really starting to piss my shit off. i'm getting that 'i'm stringing you along because i'm too worried about being rude' feeling now. i don't mean to be inappropriately bitchy, but she's leaving to go to japan for a week in two weeks and i didn't hear about it until i asked if she could play a show with us on the 25th. since she was leaving and i thought she might be gone for a long time i asked if we do some recording before she left- meaning i would bring my recording equipment to her house and record her there and the whole thing would probably only take two hours- and she said that she has too much going on with the trip being two weeks away and that she'll be back on the 4th. i'm sorry but it doesn't take two fucking weeks to prepare for a 10-day long trip. yeah, you're leaving the country, but for fuck's sake it's not like i spent two weeks packing and 'preparing' to go to new york and london when i went with my dad. now, when i went for two months i did spend weeks preparing, but i also did two recording sessions in iowa and went to wichita twice for two different funerals during the last two weeks before i left for london for a four month stay. i wasn't particularly thrilled about going to iowa to record less than a week before i was leaving, but mike had asked me before we took the time slot and we did have a batch of songs that needed to be recorded for a seven inch. it's unfortunate that this was saved until the absolute last second, but i still went to iowa and i gave it 100% because i wanted to be involved with those songs and because my friend was paying for the studio time and the seven inch on his own. now, i don't necessarily expect that level of commitment from anyone else (although it would be nice for a change of pace) that i play music with but one thing i absolutely despise is hearing lame excuses from flakes who really just mean 'i don't really feel like doing it right now.' if you are a fucking lame-ass flake then at least be honest about it- i can appreciate some honesty in that regard, plus if you let me know you're a lame-ass flake i don't have to go to the trouble of bothering to try and get you to do anything and then we won't waste each other's time.
so now, basically i have about 8 cello parts that need to be done for the next record. two of those are for tracks that are the lead contenders to go on the record. about three are for underdog tracks that have a fighting chance. the other three are kind of for admitted problem songs that have very little chance of ever seeing the light of day. there are also two tracks that i was pondering asking a friend who plays violin to play on. i'm not real sure what to do about this. i guess there's not really anything i can do... just wait until she comes back and do the recording then... i guess there are worse things in the world really than having a flaky cellist. i just wish that we could have billy around to play shows with us and record without it being a huge production. i am going to be travelling to kansas city next year to do more strings parts of course. this time the recording trip will only be string parts...

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