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  1. 6 likes
    It was lovely to finally meet John on a recent trip to Glasgow! (St Patricks day) It was a miserable day, Raining and gloomy, but we had a very pleasant couple of hours together, along with some other friends, drinking wine and consuming some rather good food in a splendid venue in Glasgow! I hope we can do this again one day mate! It was truly a lovely evening. And an incredible coincidence that we happened to be sporting the same hat! Cheers buddy!
  2. 4 likes
    Wow...good topic. I've always been interested in music, in singing, playing guitar and drums...(I sang "Country Roads" in my Vacation Bible School class to inconclusive reviews) and broke dozens of drum sticks by beating them against anything I could find. Unfortunately, to say that my mom and step-dad were unsupportive would be like saying the ocean is a small pond. Eventually, after a few years I gave in to "what was expected" and pursued a more conventional track and "rewarding" (pardon me while I yawn) career. Fast forward 45 years, then something truly magical happened. Out of nowhere I got a call from a private eye who was commissioned by my biological father to find me. He and my mom divorced when I was three and he had been trying to find me as I moved around the country over the years. I was skeptical of course, but he did provide convincing evidence. When we met, it freaked my wife completely out because we were virtually carbon copies of each other. Same build, mannerisms, hair (he had much less than me...yikes!) I found out that he had played in a band called Southern Comfort for many, many years as a drummer, and also my brother D (who I met for the first time then as well) is an accomplished bass and guitar player. So I picked up a guitar again. I really had my doubts when I started playing again, and had no confidence that I could even write a song but he kept telling me "goddam boy, it's in your genes, don't let no one tell you no different. Do what's inside and t'hell with 'em." and that's where I started writing my own songs. I looked around for some time trying to find somewhere to get more feedback on what I was writing and then I stumbled into Songstuff and the great group here. And I've never regretted it. Thanks John for putting together this site, and all you folks who write, perform, and produce music that take the time to critique and help. ~ JH
  3. 4 likes
    Proposals 2, 3, and 4 are now implemented
  4. 3 likes
    Hey! This is my first time posting here, and I'm looking for pretty much any suggestions, and criticisms. I'm new at song writing, and I feel pretty lackluster. If you have general comments, or tips to help it would be much appreciated! Thank you for your time :)! Lyrics: You spoke of a willow Tree And being In love I spoke of a burning in my lungs I feel if I don't look away I'll likely turn to stone You point out the Birds returned I'm not sure I would have known You're Sown with pedals and a hope I'm not sure you know
  5. 3 likes
    You fool! Don't get dragged in! It's a scam to get your bank details and pin number! Just remind me what they are! I'll keep them safe!
  6. 3 likes
    To actually answer the question: When I was kid in elementary school, my parents bought a pretty nice upright piano for me and my four sisters, and my mom made us all take piano lessons - she didn't play. The piano was pretty cool because it had built in rhythms - metronome, samba, rumba, shuffle, a 4/4 pattern, a 6/8 pattern, etc. - that I guess were recorded loops of some sort. It was pretty revolutionary for the time. So, I've had rhythms the play to from the start - which no doubt greatly influenced my love of rhythm. My piano teacher was really cool as well. She recognized that I wasn't very good at reading music, but that I could play really well by ear and had a strong sense of rhythm. So, instead of having me learn from the same standard piano books my sisters and other young students had to learn from, she got me sheet music for boggie woogie songs, and she'd play them for me so I knew how they were supposed to sound. That kind of got me hooked with making music, because I also almost immediately started coming up with my own piano instrumentals. For my first and only piano recital, I played a boogie woogie (I think it may have been something by Fats Domino) and one of my own original compositions. My best friend from the neighboorhood Karl had the same piano teacher. His mom had made him and his brothers take lessons as well - and I wonder now if that's where my mom got the idea. Karl quit lessons right before I was forced to start. My mom let me quit after a year, because I got "older" and taking piano lessons didn't seem cool, and practicing and lessons wasn't something I wanted to do during summer. But, I never stopped coming up with my own stuff at home Eventually, I got Karl interesed in coming up with his own stuff at home too, and so, we kind of kept encouraging each other that way over the next four years or so. When Karl and I were 15, Karl started teaching himself to play acoustic guitar using some old steel string that sat in the corner of his living room which no one played. Well, it just so happened that my older sister had quit guitar lessons, and her nylon string acoustic was just gathering dust under her bed - so I stole it. It didn't take long for Karl and I to figure out how to use the guitar chord schematics on all the sheet music each of our families had left over from piano lessons to guide our fretting fingers. And, since we each were good at playing by ear and knew how the popular songs we had sheet music for were supposed to sound, we were playing songs in no time. After awhile though, Karl and I wen't on divergent musical paths. He kept buying sheet music to learn how to play James Taylor, and I started doing my own songs - with words - that I sung. I've been doing it ever since, first with that classical nylon-string acoustic, then with a steel string acoustics, then with electric guitars, then with synths and MIDI and multi-track analog recording . . . and now also with my DAW.
  7. 3 likes
    Scratch can mean a lot of things, depending on who you are talking to. Generally speaking, it means a recording that has been brought to it's present state quickly, without the comprehensive treatment a fully engineered and produced track would normally receive. Usually the term "scratch" refers to a fast demo of a song idea, one that can be shown to other musicians that may then move forward to contribute to the more complete version of the song. One plus One means ONE instrument and ONE voice. Typically, this means guitar and voice, but not always. Another often used one plus one format is piano and voice. Specifically, this format invokes a finished song where a singer performs with just one instrument in accompaniment, or maybe two, where the production has received only moderate, or minimal engineering. A video, shot with a Go Pro video unit, of a guy playing piano and singing, which can potentially yield a VERY effective presentation, would be a common form of a one plus one effort. This, as opposed to a full band, with a dozen or more active tracks (sometimes MANY more), and intense, comprehensive engineering work, mixing, mastering, etc.
  8. 2 likes
    Hey! I just started attempting to song write, and I'm super excited to hear everyone's stuff! I mostly try to make some simple acoustic songs, and usually I fail desperately! I've already heard lots of amazing stuff already in the little bit of time I've been looking, and I'm looking forward to listen to some new art. I hope to learn from many of you, and to get to know you too!
  9. 2 likes
    I'm now excited! I'm going off to challenge that Mathew feller....
  10. 2 likes
    New song -> "Every Step" -> looking for critique on lyrics, melody, catchiness, structure, instruments, sound, voice etc - anything really! Thanks Emerald eyes like the ocean Tempest rise from the sea Waves crash down all around me Currents pulling me in So will you hold me, tightly so I know that I’ll be alright There’s nothing we’ve left say Everything now in its place And If I dive in I’m never resurfacing But there’s nothing that I’d like more And we will grow old But I will not love you less I’ll always look at you this way And I’ll make mistakes but I will do my best to be there every step of the way Crimson lips whisper too me Softest touch at my skin Still the waves crash into me Swirling tide starts to spin Will you tell me stories so I know that I’ll sleep tonight But I can feel trouble it’s rising Darkness lurks on our horizon I should known It would end like this I know I know nothing perfect nothin's bliss uh oh we'll be fine x4 [chorus]
  11. 2 likes
    What's up, guys? This is my first topic in your community, let me share an interesting article which I've found in the Internet! Music and Mood Music’s beneficial effects on mental health have been known for thousands of years. Ancient philosophers from Plato to Confucius and the kings of Israel sang the praises of music and used it to help soothe stress. Military bands use music to build confidence and courage. Sporting events provide music to rouse enthusiasm. Schoolchildren use music to memorize their ABCs. Shopping malls play music to entice consumers and keep them in the store. Dentists play music to help calm nervous patients. Modern research supports conventional wisdom that music benefits mood and confidence. Because of our unique experiences, we develop different musical tastes and preferences. Despite these differences, there are some common responses to music. Babies love lullabies. Maternal singing is particularly soothing, regardless of a mom’s formal musical talents or training. Certain kinds of music make almost everyone feel worse, even when someone says she enjoys it; in a study of 144 adults and teenagers who listened to 4 different kinds of music, grunge music led to significant increases in hostility, sadness, tension, and fatigue across the entire group, even in the teenagers who said they liked it. In another study, college students reported that pop, rock, oldies, and classical music helped them feel happier and more optimistic, friendly, relaxed, and calm. Music, Attention, and Learning Everyone who has learned their ABCs knows that it is easier to memorize a list if it is set to music. Scientific research supports common experience that pairing music with rhythm and pitch enhances learning and recall. Music helps children and adolescents with attention problems in several ways. First, it can be used as a reward for desired behavior. For example, for paying attention to homework for 10 minutes, a child can be rewarded with the opportunity to listen to music for 5 minutes. Second, it can be used to help enhance attention to “boring” academic tasks such as memorization, using songs, rhythms, and dance or movement to enhance the interest of the lists to be memorized. Instrumental baroque music is great for improving attention and reasoning. For students, playing background music is not distracting. Third, musical cues can be used to help organize activities – one kind of music for one activity (studying), another for a different activity (eating), and a third kind for heading to bed. Fourth, studies show that calming music can promote pro-social behavior and decrease impulsive behavior. Music and Anxiety Many people find familiar music comforting and calming. In fact, music is so effective in reducing anxiety, it is often used in dental, preoperative, and radiation therapy settings to help patients cope with their worries about procedures. Music helps decrease anxiety in the elderly, new mothers, and children too. Music’s ability to banish worries is illustrated in the Rogers and Hammerstein lyrics, “Whenever I feel afraid, I hold my head erect And whistle a happy tune, so no one will suspect I’m afraid… And every single time, the happiness in the tune convinces me that I’m not afraid.” Any kind of relaxing, calming music can contribute to calmer moods. Calming music can be combined with cognitive therapy to lower anxiety even more effectively than conventional therapy alone. Some studies suggest that specially designed music, such as music that includes tones that intentionally induce binaural beats to put brain waves into relaxed delta or theta rhythms, can help improve symptoms in anxious patients even more than music without these tones; listening to this music without other distractions (not while driving, cooking, talking, or reading) promotes the best benefits. Music and Moods An analysis of 5 studies on music for depression concluded that music therapy is not only acceptable for depressed patients, but it actually helps improve their moods. Music has proven useful in helping patients with serious medical illnesses such as cancer, burns, and multiple sclerosis who are also depressed. If it can help in these situations, it may be able to help you and your loved ones experience more positive moods. Music and Sleep Many people listen to soothing music to help them fall asleep. This practice is supported by studies in a variety of settings. Just don’t try listening to lively dance music or rousing marches before you aim to fall asleep. Conversely, if you’re trying to wake up in the morning, go for the fast-tempo music rather than lullabies. Music and Stress Since ancient times, it has been known that certain kinds of music can help soothe away stress. Calming background music can significantly decrease irritability and promote calm in elderly nursing home patients with dementia. Music, widely chosen, lowers stress hormone levels. On the other hand, every parent of a teenager knows that certain kinds of music, particularly at high volumes, can induce stress. Knowing that certain kinds of music can alleviate stress is one thing; being mindful in choosing what kind of music to listen to is another. Choose your musical intake as carefully as you choose your food and friends. Mental Health, Naturally: The Family Guide to Holistic Care for a Healthy Mind and Body (Copyright © 2010 American Academy of Pediatrics]
  12. 2 likes
    hey music man! it's amazing how much our lives are influenced by music. Regardless of race, creed and culture, music is an integral part of our existence. We bookmark memories and stages in our lives with music, to a point where you cant listen to a great song because you subconsciously linked it to a traumatic experience. Some songs give you a shiver up the spine, or make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up. But its not just humans. Animals also respond to music, and plants have also been found to respond positively to classical music and negatively to heavy metal! I'll never forget a documentary i watched where a pianist living in Africa befriended a local herd of elephants by putting his piano in the back yard and serenading them. They would gather around and were so gentle and obviously affected by the music. A matriarch had previously left the herd after the traumatic loss of her young to poachers would visit him at night on her own when he played one particularly sad and solemn tune. But for that moment she seemed so content... cheers, Neil
  13. 2 likes
    hi gang I saw this and thought that some of you might find this inspiring. You would never know he had a stutter, or that Eminem was a part of the cure... or that he had one ear drum! it just shows what is possible, and that we ourselves create our limitations.
  14. 2 likes
    We're going into the hat making business! It's quite lucrative, this time next year, we'll be milliners!
  15. 2 likes
    Hello! So, I'd like some advice on this song. I had written it first with certain lyrics, and it was called "Haunting Me." (Lyrics below) https://soundcloud.com/emily-anderson-277030101/haunting-me-12316-904-am/s-EGpB0 Later, I changed the lyrics because I thought the words were too depressing, so I thought about a way to make it equally appealing to me, but with lyrics that might be more attractive to more people. This version is called 'Rescue you.' The recording is better quality, and has some more production value to it, but ultimately, I'm concerned about the song itself. Is the first version better because it's more "genuine" or is the second better because it's more artful, and possibly more appealing to a larger group of people? Here is "Rescue you" https://www.reverbnation.com/emilyanderson/song/27376604-rescue-you Haunting me Lyrics: Haunting Me I feel the weight of the world taking off again A wiry bird with a song singing out I feel The eye of the storm in my head behind my lashes Like a tinge or a spark, shooting from the ashes What I get is what I see And what I see is haunting me I fill the void with sea salt and vinegar A Palace full of goods from all around the hemisphere But nobody knows me, I wear my heart inside my throat Their side-eyed glances say I’m not a regular folk What I get is what I see And what I see is haunting me It won’t be very easy, but it will be true Somewhere there is a reason for all of this that you do and it’s haunting me It’s haunting me. What a mystery are we and all we are and Everything that we want to be if it means that we only live and breathe to bend our knees, cry, smile or sing What I get is what I see And what I see is haunting me It won’t be very easy, but it will be true Somewhere there is a reason for all of this that you do and it’s haunting me It’s haunting me. RESCUE YOU LYRICS: I feel the weight of the world taking off again A wiry bird with a song singing out I feel The eye of the storm in my head behind my lashes Like a tinge or a spark, shooting from the ashes In one fell swoop of clarity The phoenix comes to rescue me I burn my tongue with sea salt and vinegar I fill my house with goods from all around the hemisphere But nobody knows me, I wear my heart inside my throat Their hard eyes press against me, I panic and take to the spokes In one great wave of ocean tide The chariot is at my side ... You don’t have to worry, you’ll find all that you lose, and Even though, we’ll run around in circles, I’ve come, to rescue you to the rescue…………………..to rescue you……... Carry me across the yellow sea It’s a mystery, this blazing epiphany There’s no time to waste, your avenue is waiting Where it takes you, no one knows; but there’s comfort in escaping At once descending from great heights The golden staircase spreads its flight
  16. 2 likes

    From the album Kevin Dixon

    I upgraded my previous computer and still use cubase. Workstation Spec: 3.5gHz Intel i7 5820k, 32gb RAM SoundBlaster ZxR Novation 61SL MkII (master keyboard) Korg KONTROL49 Software Spec: Cubase Artist 8 Propellerheads Reason 5 ReFX Nexus II Various VST Instruments Sound Spec: Pioneer DJ05-W Bi-amped near field monitors. Pioneer HDJ-2000 reference headphones Coffee Specs: Kenco Rappor.. (Lots of !!!)
  17. 2 likes
    Hi Ken When I was young I just experimented with little foundation in knowledge, and emulated the approach and techniques of other mix engineers. It wasn't until I was older that I reapproached mixing based upon an understanding of what I was doing to sound. In fact, when I reapproached mixing I had a far, far better understanding of what sound was, and what is looked like. It made a world of difference. I found that training my ears was, of course, very important. But the big difference for me was in visualising sound, and visualising what I was doing to sound, with every tweak and every effect. Effects and processors can do quite complex things to sound across 3 aspects: amplitude, in the time domain and amplitude in the frequency domain. Use DAW tool spectrum analysis to help with understanding frequency domain, and use a wave editor to understand the time domain. I found using 4 test wave forms helped with time domain effects and processing, including EQ. I used sine, square, triangle and saw. To help with getting what was going on in the frequency domain I tried both known wave forms at mixed frequencies mixed together and white/pink noise. Each had different benefits. On top of that I learned and understood the maths involved... but that was because I was learning about designing digital and analogue effects! So I don't recommend most people fo this!. I also learned what theoretically Each effect and treatment should do in the digital and analogue domain and the limitations of electronic circuitry. All that did improve my understanding. It helped me visualise what is going on, whether that is cutting an EQ hole in a pad to allow other instruments to cut through, or applying a chorus effect etc. One of the reasons I love Isotope tools is their visualisation. My point here (yes there is one) is that anything that improves understanding is good. Experimentation using your ears is necessary, an absolute minimum... trial and error. But you can greatly improve the speed and accuracy if your understanding of what is going on is developed in parallel.... and as part of the experimentation. Simple waves like sine, square, triangle and saw make visual change pretty obvious. Different waves also let you see the effect that quicker transitions can have. I realise few would go to the lengths I did, but it doesn't mean doing some of what I did wouldn't be very useful. This at least allows you to experiment with more focus, and with the ability to improve your learning. On mixing itself, times have changed (and with recent development come full circle). When I started mixing there was no automation. Ok perhaps on very high end Neve desks. Mixes had to be rehearsed. Group faders were essential, as were trainee engineers to manage sections of faders. You learned your mix much like playing a musical instrument. It introduced another performance element and level of variation mix to mix. Latest mixing control systems seem to be reintroducing this as a feature. I always enjoyed that, it has to be said. These days you can control and automate your mix to a fine level if detail. All the more reason to understand your console knobs, faders and switches, and the effects and processors you use from VSTs to console EQ. Testing is best done using test signals (many consoles can generate them) and by using reference recordings. Reference recordings are essential for getting to know your system, especially when getting to know the effects of amplifier and monitors on a recording. You know how your reference recordings will sound on different systems, so you can work out how your new mix sould sound (ball park) in order to achieve a similar balance on other systems... Moore of an issue when you do your own mastering. I hope this rambling is of some use! Lol Cheers John
  18. 2 likes
    Your production skills have improved dramatically since you first posted this song. You've accomplished major improvement in a short time; just keep doing songs, and you will continue to get better. The song sounds nice now with a good balance. I don't think the vocals necessarily need to be louder, just 'bigger' for this type of song. It needs more punch, too, but it's worlds better than the first version you posted. I wouldn't spend a ton more time on this particular song at this point. Do some more songs and circle back to this one after a bit of a break. You will learn new things with each song, and it will give your ears time to reset. Nice job! Peace, TC
  19. 2 likes
    This is just to introduce myself and to get in touch with other singer songwriter. I may be a bit of an exemption. I am no young and upcoming new talent. Although I started playing guitar when I was 15 years of age and soon after wrote my first own songs and had some gigs, I first focused on my corporate career. After having had enough of that (while still making music with others and sometimes writing songs) I left my well paid expatriate job in Asia and moved to Queensland with my wife. Guess we are sea-changers. We started an own, small businesses and I had more than ever time to create my own music. I recorded 2 CDs with a friend but for the 1st time have recently recorded my 3rd CD in a fully professional study in Cairns. What an experience! (not cheap though). And now I hope I can find ways for my music to find listeners. I am not pop song writer. I love satire, good stories and poetry. Lyrics are important to me. I actually tell stories with the help of music. So I need a listening audience. I wonder who has similar experiences to share.
  20. 2 likes
    I bet he wore a big hat and paid for your lunch.
  21. 2 likes
    Regardless of preparation, shit happens. Unless you have backup plans for every contingency which requires money and a team of pros, you are bound to run into issues at some point when you gig regularly. During one stint, I was on the road for over 3 years, and I can tell you that there is no way to conceive of the types of problems you are going to run into on tour. Even if you have all the bases covered, stuff still happens beyond your control. That being said, having your act together certainly helps. Repetition solves most of the usual problems, and the load-in, load-out, etc. becomes so second nature that it's automatic. You are bound to rely on other people (it's nearly impossible and extremely draining to try to manage every facet of a gig yourself), and people are fallible. I loved the playing part. The part that takes its toll is every other part, lol. Some examples are: getting pulled over by the cops who want to search your truckload of equipment for contraband and make you 3 hours late to a show; having a roadie steal a bunch of your merchandise and disappear into the nether regions of the planet; showing up at a gig where the college frat boys decided to put the keg of beer in the electrical room and the power is down with beer/water all over the floor; having fans climb onstage and not having the security you need to regain control of the situation; finding out one of your bandmates has gone over the cliff of drug addiction; watching your new soundman blow out one of your bottoms to the point it catches fire 500 miles from home base; and so forth. You can prepare all you want but be prepared to roll with the punches Peace, TC
  22. 2 likes
    Hi there, I spent the last days working on this little tune... https://soundcloud.com/dustin-naegel/journey-onward ...a somewhat rhythmically driven (almost march-like) medieval/fantasy theme soundtrack theme. It's build upon a (hopefully) heroic melody and is intended to accompany the travel montage of a fantasy epic (game/film). But it's not really complete since I am not satisfied with the overall sound. If you have some handy tips, especially concerning the mix, please do not hesitate to share your insights. Best regards Dustin
  23. 2 likes

    From the album Site Stuff

    A mind map showing the layout of the community side of Songstuff.
  24. 2 likes
    Hi Gang OK so the critique board re-org hasn't been popular, so taking all that into consideration we have some proposed changes. The hip hop boards are being dealt with separately. Proposal 1 - Critique Area Critique |-Lyrics |----Lyrics Archive |-Scratch or 1+1 |-Full Production |-Video |-Artwork |-Song Covers and Remixes |-Poetry |-Members Access Only Proposal 2 - Discussion Area Discussion |-Songwriting |-Music Production |---VST and VSTi |-Performance |-Videos and Images |-Music Industry |-Musicians Lounge All existing sub boards will be merged into their parent. In other words, boards for individual instruments will be removed, leaving only an overall Performance Board, Specialist Music Industry boards will be removed leaving only "music Industry" as a board etc. Only the boards above will be left. Proposal 3 - Contests and Challenges Contests and Challenges |-Contests |-Challenges |-Rap Battles Proposal 4 - Showcase Showcase |-Music |-Lyrics |-Video ________________________ If all 3 proposals are acceppted the Main Forums group will look like this: Main Forums |-Introduce Yourself |-Showcase |-Critique |-Collaboration |-Discussion Cheers John
  25. 2 likes
    Overall, there are less critique boards than there was when we started. The main categories are the same. Across all the boards roughly 25 boards were removed.
  26. 2 likes
    I think you should be proud of your work on this so far. Like Monostone said, just keep at it. Not every output has to be The Masterpiece. Sometimes songs are just stepping stones to something else. I also appreciated that you have a sense of building to something and then you know where the payoff is supposed to be and you try to deliver. Those are all things some people never quite get the hang of, so that's good. Your singing also seems just fine, no worries there. I found the lyrics to have a lack of original imagery. There are a lot of kind of random metaphors strung together without enough sense of unity. You've got a road, a fire, a storm, a wire, there should be more commitment to something. It sort of feels like you just strung together some familiar lyric cliches without a whole lot of thought into an overarching theme. Lastly, this is a much easier fix: I find the chorus to be really midrange-heavy. I want to put a big old classic V EQ on it, get the bass to pop out much more and tone down the muddiness of the middle stuff. I think you'll find it feels a lot more satisfying.
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    Ok, should be fixed
  28. 2 likes
    Critique |-Song Lyrics |----Lyrics Archive I- Song Recordings (including intrumentals) I-----Minimal Production I-----Fuller Production I would prefer no recording production-level sub-forums, but if that is desired by others, I suggest the above descriptions. I also hope the new tagging protocols remain in effect. Perhaps the "Video" critique sub-froum should just be for videos unrelated to music. Musically-related videos I think should be in one of the Song Recording sub-forums - video is just the manner in which the recording is presented. Otherwise, we may end up segregating posts by those who stream their music via audio-only sites like Soundcloud and those who stream music via video sites like Youtube. If someone wants their music video posted in the Song Recordings critiqued for the video as well, they can tag it for video critique. I think it would also be helpful if in the further descriptions for the Song Recording critique forum there was a mention that streamed content posted is likely to get more feedback that posted content one would have to download. I'm really tired of having to explain that to Noobs. Thanks, David
  29. 2 likes
    I just rewatched that SM57 video again, and I noticed something interesting. A commenter asked the band what preamp/converter they used for the song and they responded: "Portico mic preamp, LA2a compressor, and Lynx II converters, mixed in a treated room using Cubase 7.5" So for those of you playing along at home, that's a $100 mic with with a $1,700 preamp, a $3,500 hardware compressor, and a $1,000 PCI audio card. I'm thinking that video as an argument for how great the SM57 sounds may have just had some of the wind knocked out of it.
  30. 2 likes
    Hi Dr KeyBaG, Thanks for the introduction. Glad to have you join in and share your passion and talent for music.. Songstuff is quite a community... See you in the forums. Peggy
  31. 2 likes
    What about this: Dream on - Aerosmith Stand - R.E.M. Personally, I don't mind the ones you can hardly figure out, sometimes they work, sometimes they don't but at least it makes it interesting.
  32. 2 likes
    I'm not a Mac guy and have no idea how Drummer works in either Garage Band or Logic, but others here do. If you can select what drums sounds to use, it might be an option for you to try with this song, because it sounds to me like you're going for a quirky-cool pop sound, and that means you need drums - just my opinion. I would think for this particular song you'd want synthetic-sounding and not really natural-sounding drum sounds - it's just that kind of tune. But, anyway . . . I've listened to a lot of your stuff on Reverbnation. You're not only a fine singer, you've got killer chops on piano and apparently you slay with an oboe too? I know you probably think you're just getting into music production, but with your talent, you should consider it a worthwhile investment to upgrade to Logic Pro as soon as you can. Again, just my opinion, and I have that opinion about your talent because you also shine as a wordsmith - this song included. Fab lyric. I did notice that you have substantially reduced the incidents of p-pops/plosives in your vocal tracks since your earlier recordings, but for some reason those earlier recordings sounded like they had less hiss from the mic+pre-amp than you have here. Not sure why. It also sounds to me that even though you have reduced the plosives, you still have some, and the mic is also picking some extraneous noises from your mouth. All in all, it sounds to me like you're singing a bit too close to the mic. Another thing I can hear in this recording are clicks from your mouse at some points when you start the recording for the vocal track and/or stop the recording - including at the end of the song. That happens to me too. What you need to do is highlight the audio clips for the vocal tracks, and cut and/or trim the clips so that they only sound while you're actually singing. Here's a tutorial on how to do that in Garage Band. http://www.techradar.com/how-to/computing/apple/garageband-how-to-trim-a-track-1302336 It's always good practice to make sure you click the start of the vocal track a bit before you start singing (if you can given the timing of things) and that you wait a bit until after you stop singing before you click stop (again if you can given the timing of things). That way, any mouse clicks that get recorded at the beginning and at the ending of the audio clip won't be super-close to your actual singing so that trimming the track to remove the clicks will be easy to do. Also, trimming the vocal tracks so that they start right when you start singing and end right after you stop singing can mitigate against the hiss being heard before and after you're actually singing, perhaps making the vocal track hiss less noticeable in the mix. As I said, I think this song is fab. I also think you structured it very well - even the bridge works great. I do have one nit though. I really don't think the song is long enough in duration, and is aching for a longer ending having you repeating the killer chorus and hook. In fact, the current ending kind of sounds like you really didn't know quite how to end the song. I think you should keep going having your backing vocals singing "control freak" while your lead vocal sings things like "yeah, I'm a freak for control baby ," etc. in a more free-form kind of way. After a further while, you could end the song with the music coming to a full-all-stop in rhythm with all vocals then singing "control freak" a cappella in harmony, or you could have a fade out while you're still singing. Just ideas. I think you show really good instincts for how you want to have the instruments arranged in this song. Even though I personally think some of the synth sounds themselves might not have been the best choices for this tune, the notes they play sound "right" to me Dek (MonoStone) complains that there's no bass. I think you do have a synth playing a bass arrangement in the song; it's just not the best choice of a bass sound for the arrangement. Again, just my opinion. I think you're just "better production" away from doing incredible work, Emily. I don't know if I've been any help to you right now, but if you stick around, maybe I can be of help - and if I can't, maybe someone else can be of help. David P.S. If you would re-do Wilderness at some point to eliminate all the vocal track plosives, you would make me a very happy man. What an amazing song.
  33. 2 likes
    I wasn't always into music deeply though I enjoyed its company. I remember picking up a guitar for the first time when I was 15 years old (being 24 now). Maybe that's when my interest in music increased and kept my teenage mind occupied. Being in India and coming from a middle-class background, my only source of international music back then was the radio. Every night at 9:00PM, the local radio would air the feed of Top40 with Ryan Seacrest or Casey Kasem and I used to fall asleep to it. The more I recall those nights, the more I realise how significant it has been for me to ever have my doors open to this wonderful world of music. Around the same time, I came across and heard 'Gravity' by John Mayer. That changed everything. I'm sure there is always one moment in life for every single person that proves to be monumental in deciding what the rest of their life is going to be. Listening to Gravity was mine. Never was I so moved with the words being sung and the music going with it. That's when my fascination with songwriting, making music, expressing was born. My frustration with my noob guitar playing skills further motivated me to write my own words and melodies. lol That's how it began. From there, I would try to find every opportunity to sing in front of an audience. Since I was in school, most of that would be singing competitions. I guess being part of those competitions really helped me gain confidence in myself to stand in front of an audience and perform. There was no stopping me from there. And then Songstuff & John happened. For those of you who know Derek Sivers is would also know that he was an active blogger/writer as well and was open to discussions with any person who would send him a mail. I did so, seeking music advice back in 2011. He said that the best way to get better at what you do is to share it with like minded people. He suggested I find communities online. And obviously, the first one to pop up was Songstuff. I joined Songstuff in Feb 2011 (I just checked, it marked my 6 years of Songstuff just yesterday) and I was quite the excited one. John noticed. I started getting involved with more things Songstuff and we started talking more about music and what not. Back then, I had a very basic phone with internet capabilities at the lowest. I had no computer, no equipment. In fact I had no room of mine either & was living in a room with my two brothers and my mom. But I had these songs. And John suggested I put an EP out with those songs. Now, note that I'd never performed anywhere but in school and college. I had no equipment, no money and quite evidently, no sense of challenge. And John says - "If that's where we've got to start from, then let's start". I did all I can to put some money together (saving lunch money, claiming that I needed lunch money from friends lol) and then went to a studio and recorded 5 songs and called it Beyond the Door. It was just one guitar (with barely average guitar playing) and my voice. But I did it. That's the point John had all along. Use what you've got and work with it. As if there was any other choice. I put the EP out online, sent it indie radio stations all over the globe (I did get my songs aired in a handful of radio stations and podcasts in the UK, US and Japan. I think that was super sweet of the people running the shows), got a 'music video' prepared with the help of my brother. A few people in the city took notice, invited me to perform at a few places for free. Two venue owners saw me there and offered me my very first paid gigs and on I went on my journey to become a full time musician. With John's direction always being there, I continued to stay active and build my music career while in college. As you would know how it is in India when it comes to parents pressuring you to pursue a more 'meaningful profession', I ploughed on as I finished my bachelor's degree in computer science. I worked for about a year and then made the decision to call it quits and pursue music full time. My parents were obviously against it but being stubborn, I did it anyways. John and other friends helped me to be smart about it. Being a singer-songwriter in India is not exactly a financially stable option lol I had to make sure that my education loans were still being taken care of as well that nothing changes in the financial equation I have with my parents. I wasn't a kid anymore. I did have a responsibility. It's been two years since I called it quits. Looks like things haven't gone to the shits yet lol I don't plan on it to. My parents came to a gig of mine a couple of months back. Their very first gig. After years of quarrel, fights, debates and what not, my dad on his way back said "I understand what he's doing now". He's not opposed my music or has shown distaste towards it ever since. In fact, it has been the opposite. Over the years, I've got to support some of the best bands in the country. I opened for Lucy Rose and Luke Sital-Singh when they came to India. I got to perform with Christian Galvez, one of the best Jazz musicians in the world which was a life time opportunity. There is a LONG way to go. And being a full time musician is a real struggle every single day. But it's all worth it! Every single bit. Years have passed and John has continued to mentor me in my career. He's been a greater friend and has helped me in the toughest of my days even when I was at a stage where I was 'hurting' myself. And it is such a mind-boggling thing for me to comprehend how someone on the other side of the world who has never met me in person has had so much selfless concern and passion in helping me. Well, helping people. I mean, this is what Songstuff is all about. It sounds like I'm exaggerating but believe me, John is probably THE biggest reason for any success I have earned and will ever earn in my music career. I try to remember that every day. Well, that's me.
  34. 2 likes
    Keep My Powder Dry Copyright © 2016 by L.C. Campbell Verse 1 When love turns to war It’s not love anymore Home is a battleground Casualties all around Don’t even remember what I’m fighting for Chorus 1 So I’ll keep on keepin’ on Give nothing away Bind up my wounds Live to love another day Hold my head up high You won’t see me cry No tears on my face I’ll keep my powder dry Verse 2 We were on the same side Now the gap’s a mile wide I can’t see your heart from here Who we were has disappeared There’s no point in fighting what’s already died Chorus 2 So I’ll keep on keepin’ on Give nothing away Bind up my wounds Live to love another day Hold my head up high You won’t see me cry No tears on my face I’ll keep my powder dry Bridge I’ve learned the hard way that lipstick and blush Just aren’t enough when the going gets rough Chorus 3 So I’ll keep on keepin’ on Give my heart away In spite of my wounds I’ll live to love another day Hold my head up high You won’t see me cry No tears on my face I’ll keep my powder dry
  35. 1 like
    I expect that many here may already know much of this, but I didn't learn what I know about sound absorption from doing music. I learned it from having a child with hearing loss, so I'm going to share the information for people here who may not know and don't have a studio to record in. When my middle child was a toddler, we learned she had profound hearing loss. Soon after, she got bilateral hearing aides, but she had to learn to listen and speak. She attended a school for auditory/oral school for deaf where they had ideal listening conditions including acoustically treated walls (which had the appearance of worn or brushed commercial rug). However when she entered public school, the listening environment was quite different and I had to advocate for the school system to employ low cost measures to improve classrooms acoustics. What I learned was that 7 empty classrooms with the doors closed had an ambient noise level of between 35.5. - 46.5 dBA -- about the noise level of a desk fan--with the band room having the best acoustics ( good for the band right?). Then you get 20+ kids in there moving around, chair legs scratching the floor, feet scuffling, the teacher talking, kids chatting, the furnace or fans running, intercom, etc. and the noise level shoots right up there. Anyway, small changes to help this would ideally have been a rug on the floor, but we had to settle for tips on the chair legs (some suggest tennis balls). Additionally things that help absorb sound reverberation and make for a better environment were simple things like wall hangings such as pictures, felt or cork board, posters, 3-D artwork on the walls and chalkboards, tables arranged in the classroom to interfere with the pathway of sound, seals under the doors to close off hall noise when the doors were shut, curtains on the windows and bookshelves in the classroom, things that hang from the ceiling such as mobile artwork, flags, replacing light fixtures that hum, keeping noisy equipment off and keeping windows and doors closed etc. Any furniture that took up space helped the classroom acoustics. Most furniture and fabric-type covering absorbs sound far better than a bare wall. As it relates to a good recording if you don't have a studio, most of these things might apply. This is probably why a bedroom is a good recording spot. Wall quilts, curtains (even if temporary on a spring rod), rugs on the floor, furniture with placemats or doilies overhanging are some of the best sound absorbers. (When I was a kid, my friend's dad had a small room with walls covered with sample rugs all different colors. I didn't know what it was then, but my guess now is that it was a recording studio of some type). i wish I could give you the difference in ambient noise level after the suggestions were implemented, but that wasn't part of the classroom acoustic analysis.
  36. 1 like
    Sadly not mate! I was struggling with the language!
  37. 1 like
    Welcome bro' from a guy who's just started dipping his toes in the water. I'm lyrics only, but a wealth of ideas available here and a world of help. Regards, John.
  38. 1 like
    Hey all.....life has been quite a turmoil lately, so I haven't been able to do much recording. Here is one I'm working on....I'm mostly looking for crits in the the lyrics, overall song flow and my biggest bugaboo...timing . Production....well....I'm learning some new things but it's still my weakest point. Consider this a work in progress. As always, any and all comments are welcome....(hint: 'you suck' is not helpful) Missing You copyright 2017 JH Michaels, all rights reserved Verse 1: I look around and I'm all alone How do I stop this empty ache in my soul Our life was bright as a sunny day Since you're gone it all fades to gray Refrain: Every day, and every way, oh.. I'm missing you Every day, and every way, oh.. I'm missing you Verse 2: I tried to find a way to make you stay But no matter what I did, you went anyway It's you I find I...I really need So that my heart won't continue to bleed Refrain Verse 3: What do we do when it's all gone bad And we're just a shadow of the dreams we had Somehow I wish it could be The way it started for you and me Refrain Bridge: Oh baby please won't you come home Oh baby please won't you come home Refrain Bridge2: Oh baby please won't you come home Why did you leave me all alone Refrain Bridge3: Oh baby please won't you come home I can't stand being all alone End
  39. 1 like
    Such a wonderful voice you have Emily. I think the song is super catchy. In terms of the mix, I would agree that it is on the sharper side. It's mostly the synth and the hi hats and crashes that is making it seem like that, at least in my opinion. But you're definitely getting there with the mix. I'll keep an eye out for further updates. Thanks for the lovely listen. Mahesh
  40. 1 like
    Hey all,Finally finished mixing my band's latest installment in our Animals cover - the legendary 17-minute trip that is Dogs. We aimed for something respectful of the original but with a modern sheen. What do ya'll think?!
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    (SCROLL DOWN FOR LATEST VERSION) Here's another dark story for you. Please feel free to throw in alternative words, phrases, corrections and more!! Cheers, Geir Ho Hum GER©2017 He killed them all The teens in our town That's what I've heard What goes around A devil's joke A morbid phrase A necrologue For every case Ho Hum Nothing but Ho Hum Ho Hum So, he was traced By twelve blood hounds Hung by his neck On evil ground Ho Hum On evil ground Ho Hum Ho Hum
  42. 1 like
    I see what you mean and I need to think about it. It's getting late here.. Thanks Note, it's a tricky song and not so much room for lyrics.
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    I'm a finnish music enthusiast, who makes different kinds of music with computers. I do all kinds of mixing and mastering (mainly my own songs). My style is so called Old School - based on my history ie. mainly Blues and RnB based music. I'd like to do collaboration with different kinds of people in music industry or with the people, who feel passion for music: > bands (demo songs for bands) > songwriters > lyric writers > singers > others Jari Korhonen Lappeenranta Finland
  44. 1 like
    Nice work on this. I like the song. The mix sounds pretty good and balanced to me. I was really wanting the music to ramp up during the chorus...crazier drums etc... Would make a great synth rock song...its a little too laid back musically but the vocals are very cool. Ricky
  45. 1 like
    Liked it a lot! One thing that I would change for myself (as it always happen to me when I hear it) is the "bitch" word. I would replace it with a more distant analog word. I do not have any good substitute. The first thing that comes to my mind is 'beast' but I am not sure if it fits in meaning wise. Other than that it is great for me!
  46. 1 like
    Choice of DAW is just down to what works for you. If your music is mostly guitar based then I doubt it makes much difference which DAW, other than what feels comfortable to you. I use Reason, as a few others here do, but that's just my preference and it's not the cheapest, it comes with a lot of instruments and effects... and I think it's good for inventing your own sounds and effects.
  47. 1 like
    I'm happy for you. When I go I want to go all the way which is why I'd choose a firehawk. Regardless of "style" there is something their for everyone. I tend to be very specific about how close I can recreate a given classic setup and firehawk is best suited for that with it's endless array of amp and effects models. Oddly my current playing eschews all of that. I pull up one favorite amp model with one favorite setting and one guitar then just play. It's all about what happens with my fingers while playing rather than tone carving. Which is a good thing as I get to play more.
  48. 1 like
    M.P when you get older you always eat dessert first in case you don't reach that part of the meal . or is that just me ? LOL john
  49. 1 like
    Whatever we want? You mean like eating dessert first?
  50. 1 like
    Hey I have written a new article about lyric writing critique. Lyrics Critique for Songwriters As part of this I've put together a list of common questions that you might ask yourself when reviewing someones' work. The questions posted at the moment go some way towards a set of articles about planning and developing a lyric, but more on that later. Anyway, the idea is to help improve upon this set of questions. Feel free to pass comment, and to suggest other questions, although the idea of this set is for questions that you should be able to answer "yes" to. I will leave comments up, but I will copy new or altered questions into this post so that they remain an entire list. Genre or style specific questions could be collected together within separate topics. So... Common Lyric Critique Questions: Is the title memorable? Is there one distinct lyrical message? Is the title consistent with the lyrical message? Is the plot believable? Is the plot engaging? Is the plot a suitable vehicle for conveying the message? Does the message have a common appeal? Does the theme have a common appeal? Would the the theme and message paint the singer in a favorable light? Does the lyric have a strong start pulling you into the lyric in the first couple of lines? Is there a pay-off? Is there a conclusion? Is the rhyme scheme consistently applied? Is the meter consistent? Is the main lyrical hook consistent with the title? Is the main lyrical hook placed appropriately for the song form? Is the song form beneficial to the lyric? Do I like it? Cheers John