Saturday, November 24, 2007

i'd like to knock the previous bitter entry out of the top spot

we feel a lot better about that whole thing now that we're planning on selling the van. i got my igo card today, so we will probably do a test run soon and see how it goes. last night my supervisor gave me and another person i work with a ride home because we all live in relatively the same area. he drove a minicooper on lakeshore drive. it was quite an experience riding in a small car again- a little scary- he almost got hit by people not paying attention twice. i'm not used to that anymore because driving in a giant white van people really have to not be paying attention not to notice it. it kind of draws the eye. but we shall see. i'm excited about the car-sharing program because one of the cars that's right by our place is a honda civic and i really miss my old honda civic so much. i'm hoping that when stefanie is going to buy a car (or we both buy a car maybe) that it would be the same kind of civic as the one that i used to have- it was a stick shift. i hope that our stuff will fit in it. i think that most of the time we actually use less equipment than we used to. it isn't necessary to lug the giant bass amp around as much anymore since stefanie plays pretty much all percussion. now it's a question of getting that awkward ass table into a car. the rest of her drum set will be pretty small. i think that she wants to get a ride cymbal and soon she's going to get a floor tom- she's waiting on her christmas bonus.
so far nothing on the christmas time show front. i'm getting a bit antsy. it would really suck not to be able to do it this year. i'm sure no one else would really give a shit, but it's something i've been looking forward to all year. it's very fun and exciting to be able to play live with billy and it sounds really good.
i think we're going to start learning to play the old songs without loops. i've got big plans on the horizon. BIG plans. i've actually started work on the next two records- one is another ep that's actually secretly a full-length record and the other is a full-length with 12 songs that i want to press onto vinyl. i've gotten a good start on the vinyl full-length. i've got a few tracks that are actually almost done- i initially thought that i'd have to redo things on them with the new little tricks that i've learned, but i realised that the guitar sound i'd gotten was the one that i wanted for that entire record and it's a lot easier to get than the 'down to sleep' one- which requires a lot of mics. the vinyl full-length (which is at this point called 'all hope is blind') will be much more minimal and there will be more space and breathing room in the structure of the songs. there aren't as many loops- a few will be bass loops and then there's a really old song that is being re-recorded for it that has an old shalloboi-style loop- me banging on a pan backwards and shaking christmas bells. for the most part there will just be one guitar part (the ones that have multiple guitar parts have some kind of spare melodic part or a few textural overdubs), drums, voice(s) and i'm going to write string arrangements for all of the songs and record them with a trio- cello, viola and violin. i would like to record the string trio in one go since the cassette machine 8-track is a little overstuffed as it is. i also think that it would sound better and wouldn't have to bounce tracks around (which i have to do with a song with three string parts that's on the 'down to sleep' record). no distortion on this full-length at all. it's gonna be pretty sweet. i want to get a string trio together somehow to play the songs live at least once and do arrangements for a few choice old shalloboi songs. here's hoping it can work out. lately i've found if i persist and don't give up i can usually get things to work out the way i want them to on that front. it takes a little creative maneuvering. i learned how to write sheet music in alto clef already (which is for viola). i was watching a nick cave dvd and they were doing string arrangements and picked something up that might help me write in bass clef (which is for cello). i keep putting off talking to someone who works with stefanie about recording some violin tracks for 'down to sleep' and i will ask her to show me how to write out sheet music in treble clef. i did actually learn to read and write music wayyyyy back when i was first learning to play guitar. i used to be able to play guitar by reading it straight off of the page without tablature. tablature really ruined that. i tried to keep it up for as long as i could and i really wish that i hadn't lost that, but honestly there've only been two times i can think of where it's mattered or kept me from doing something- both involved the moe!kestra. anyway, that's where i'm at right now. i just recorded some guitar parts and a vocal for 'narcoleptic' which is on the vinyl full-length and was played live at last year's acoustic show (mike played the acoustic guitar part). i just finished recording the new version of 'on the bridge' yesterday, which i need to mix down now and post as part of the 'wish' single (which also needs artwork). i've finished a ton of extra tracks for the 'down to sleep' cycle. i did a few decent scratch drum tracks for those as well. i mainly just need to mix it all down and keep listening to all that stuff. i really need to finish this track that's been languishing on a shelf for at least two years, probably longer. i have a feeling if i finish it it might become something really special. stefanie sang it a while back- it just needs the full meal deal. we'll see how it goes. perhaps that could be my little project for the day.
i think i shall cut this off then right here. i doubt anyone made it all the way through.

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