Great progress today. Was able to locate the right melodies for DARKNESS AND LIGHT (which isn’t the title; I only say that to have some fun by having a title that makes fun of a title I might have come up with in 1987; or 2014!). That took us straight into WORLD’S ON FIRE (which is the title). Had that middle-of-the-road quality that gets pretty boys on the radio, but not SP. So off we went into the magic box looking for that last bit of gold dust. It took hours, some trying, us trying, but at the end The Shredder was playing this kind of Echo B meets an orchestra part that meshed wonderfully with ‘ye olde triplet figure from yours synthi. And with that we sat around and told stories about betrayals past. More tomorrow. Exciting days.
Oh, and lest I forget, tomorrow is my dear friend Art Shay’s birthday. If you don’t know Art’s incredible photography, search him up. He’s on Pwittah I believe.
Our most productive day so far; picked up where we left off with ‘I SAID;’ fusing a COUGAR idea that had been set aside the first day back onto the shift into a wider chorus. As Howard said: “I don’t think I’ve ever heard you do that kind of change (meaning dynamic) in a song.’ To which Jeff replied, “And that’s a good thing!” We followed this up with ‘THE HUNTED’ (?), which has the distinction of being so catchy from the first you almost don’t know what to do with it. So Howard name checked some band I won’t mention and said how they’d had a hit where the bass carries the song forward (the guitars as such being held back). This prompted a running of the bass line (WALDORF) into a FOX-FUZZ, which sounded great; the song untouched and dosed with guitars at the appropriate moment. Next from the random pile was ANAIS: a riff I’d toyed with on the last SP touring cycle but hadn’t gotten far with; too busy I guess. But in the first round of demo-making I was able to turn the busy-body riff into a shoegazer wash which when laced with big, simpler guitars feels fatal.
Somehow all this fuzzing-about led to a discussion that maybe I should sell my Siamese Fuzz so I can buy more synths (a joke, mind you: sorta). Howard said “I’ll buy it,” and then quoted a price that I guessed was about 6 or 7 times less than I’d expect to get for a piece of equipment that launched a thousand sonic armies (another joke, not really). This prompted Jeff to say that perhaps we should get a company to clone the exact pedal. I agree! (Because none that have ever tried in my estimation have come close. An opinion).
Lastly, my eyes a-closing, we got into an idea without a melody (let’s call in DARKNESS and FLIGHT). To find one I’d pull up my recently purchased ARP SOLUS with drifting pitch and tap away; the underneath groove so alluring that I suggested that maybe this could be a song with but one change. But Jeff disagreed, and a search began for the elusive new part. Found one, chopped it in and left it at that. Not sure how good it can be, but let’s just say as I write this the loop of farkness and dight is stuck in my head.
And yes, we’re working tomorrow, post-other show for those who seem to think that one musical life does not somehow equal another.
Remember, when they ask for your occupation on a visa form, write: ARTIST. Not: NOT-ARTIST.
Dizzy day. Started with CARDINAL RULE, and was able to turn the corner on it by stripping back the busy/arpeggiating figures taken from the original guitar part; until all that was left was a simple chimed guitar and strings. Then it was off to TOODLE-LOO, which I’d classify as a rocker in the straightest sense. So rather than reinvent the wheel (as I’ve tried in vain oh so many times!) we focused on just getting the song heavier, bolder, and more epic-er. Biff-Bam-Vroom! Ended the night on one of those whose titles escapes me, and messed with the songs upward potential after a suspended beginning sets a dramatic stage. Oh yeah, it’s called I SAID (as opposed to I FORGOT). So that’s where we’ll start tomorrow.
Having lots of fun and good times with my mates, where the laughter is free.
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Pretty full on day, with Howard picking at random which of the 26 STAR category songs to dive into. SOLARA was first, which went from a typical 90’s-type rocker to something that felt like it belonged. Next up was a song whose title escapes me, which in a previous demo had kind of a 80’s club vibe (in a good way). Unfortunately that went nowhere, and after 3 hours was sent off to COUGARLAND. It was getting late, but to keep to our *3 a day (or more) quota we got into it with a fetching song called CARDINAL RULE. Gorgeous as a fingerpicking-type song, we started breaking apart the internal rhythms to be voiced on various ‘things.’ And that’s where we left it, in the positive glow of 2 good and 1 hurting. Same tomorrow! But better.
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