Daily Loop #28

It starts with a sample, really. Oh, I’ll just make a drum beat. Then before you know I pull out the microphone and weirdness just happens.

“You are the center piece, you are the way to go!”

Between full-time professional musicians who are in real studios recording albums, and the whole “I just don’t want to make music” (which is where I was a few months ago), there is a wide ranges of places to be. I see these people everyday on social media, playing guitar and singing in front of a propped up smart phone. Finger drums on some cool piece of gear. Ambient live streams with enough equipment to launch rockets.

I discovered the idea of “picking yourself” from Seth Godin, who wrote about it back in 2011 and 2015 (and other times, too, probably).

Once you understand that there are problems just waiting to be solved, once you realize that you have all the tools and all the permission you need, then opportunities to contribute abound. No one is going to pick you. Pick yourself.

Seth Godin in ‘Reject the tyranny of being picked: pick yourself

There is room for all of our music, our art, our photography. But we can’t hoard it. We can’t wait until it’s perfect, for someday, because someday we might not be here. The world needs softness, and weird music, and quirky art.

Pick something you made and put it out there. And do it again. Pick yourself, we need you.

Daily Loop #27

Feeling absolutely zero inspiration at the start of this one today, and ran into some software issues, but it got done.

The links below… just, damn. I spend far less on social media than I used to, and these sorts of gems belong somewhere, you know? Like, that artwork is from Ms Wearer. There are so many people who aren’t on Instagram, or the various other channels they’re on. I don’t know. I just want people to see all this wonderful art, and photographs, and solid quotes, but I also want it to be somewhere, too, and not locked away in random silos.

Okay, I need some coffee. Have a good day, friends.

LIKES

“I refuse to create for engagement. I don’t care if my art flops, I’m here to share ME & if someone follows me, I wish it to be from a genuine connection made. I wish for the meaningful to succeed over the consumable,” @Vlizzyjpeg

Reel to reel video from Pexels

Daily Loop #26

There was supposed to be snow outside when I woke up, but there’s nothing by grayness. Up early, crack open the laptop; gotta get some joy and smiles in front of all the oncoming dread of the day (this took from about 7:05am to 8:02am to make, completely from scratch).

Sampled bit came from this 1993 Barbie commercial:

LIKES

“Since I’m thinking about weird social media things, I’d LOVE to end the era of superfluous posting. Somehow ppl have been convinced that having a regular posting schedule is more important than having worthwhile content and it shooooows,” @lilbadsnacks

“PA’s vote by mail law got more R votes than D votes. It has been upheld in court. Now the most extreme Republicans in Harrisburg want to repeal the law (that they voted for) because they didn’t get the election results they wanted? Come on,” @JoshShapiroPA

Goodnight, Metal Friend #13

Technology has been against me all day, in the form of errors, mix ups, and whatever else. Even had to reboot my computer because of some audio issues. It’s been a day.

Goodnight Metal Friend Mix #13 includes Killanova, Simulacra, Sincere Receiver, Subastral Roar, and Fallen Names. Each was discovered and purchased via Bandcamp, so I urge you to dig into those links if you hear something you like.

A Daily Loop and a Goodnight Metal Friend mix, on a Monday? Well, been doing my best to stay off social media, and it’s amazing how the time adds up. From sourcing music instead of doom scrolling, to getting in front of the computer after waking up instead of checking Twitter… it’s not much, but it really is. It adds up.

Daily Loop #25

It’s Monday, again. A weekly reminder that our weekends are no longer filled with rejuvenating times with friends, new experiences, random encounters, and spontaneous adventures. Nope! All gone.

So turn on your computer, dial into the internet, and let’s just pretend everything is normal.

The main riff in today’s Daily Loop was played on my bass, which I converted to MIDI notes.

LIKES

“Some days, I really hate this shit. Like really fucking hate it on an extra level. Today is one of those,” @georgehahn

Video by Camilo Calderón from Pexels

Make Yourself an Experience

Anyone (literally) can get a song up on Spotify.

Anyone (literally) can get their song up on YouTube.

You don’t have to out run a bear, you just have to out run your friends.

Set up a site for your album. Put up your lyrics, your photos, your stories. You wish a cool media outlet would do a feature on your new release, right? In the meantime, do it yourself.

You’d post a link to that cool press if you got it.

For now, build your own “press” and post that link instead.

You dream of your killer live stage set up – lights, video screens, dancers.

Start now.

Make your website your stage. Fill it with your art, your ideas, your dreams, your colors, your imagery.

Because someone else just starting out in stage design is looking and listening and watching.

Because someone else is just getting started in costume design. And video editing. And graphic design.

Put more of yourself out there, in full form. Attract your people, your fans, your team.

Today isn’t the time for just posting throw-away Tweets that wash away in an hour. Not time for “stories” that float off like a plastic bag in the breeze.

Buy a domain name, set up a site, and stake your place on the internet. Your home. Your HQ. The source for your magic and your art.

Don’t just add a photo and post a link. Rip open yourself and get more of yourself onto the screen. Answer interview questions you’ve not yet been asked, list your favorite horror films, post that video of yourself making coffee in the morning with your music in the background.

Your music is part of life, part of existence, part of the human story. Don’t let your music fight all by itself on a crowded playlist, which is just two steps away from looking like a Google Sheet:

Control your destiny, your branding, and your look. Put together more of what you do, and who you are, in a space that you control.

Daily Loop #23

It’s the weekend, so I thought I’d try shooting one of those play through videos for a loop today. Sometimes I forget to add a real bass line, as I’ve been playing since 1991 (though haven’t kept up in the last decade).

Shot the video with my iPhone XR on a tripod, then Airdropped them to my computer. From there, pulled everything into ScreenFlow, lined everything up, adjusted some of the video controls (brightness, contrast), and that’s it.

LIKES:

“I often think abt how much we repress during this pandemic in order to wake up, go to work. To be forced to live our lives while 100’s of thousands die in the background. & I think abt how once ends & we can finally process, the scale of national trauma we’ll be reckoning with,” @catcontentonly

Daily Loop #22

The thing you produce doesn’t have to be fully formed, or ready for prime time. The way you get better is with other people. Be them fans, or collaborators, or just casual friends cheering you on – fill the void with your thing, as often as you can.

The loop above took about 45 minutes to make. Find some sound to sample, work in a beat, make a bass line, figure a small arrangement. Find a good video. Edit together a video for Vimeo and IG stories. Write this post.

That’s energy going out into the world, and energy attracts energy. We saw the power of negative energy a few weeks ago at the US Capitol. That didn’t happen in isolation.

So consider the goodness we could birth in the opposite direction. Happy hoards of weirdo creative people releasing music, making videos, magazines, TV-style game shows distributed around the world.

We can do this.

LIKES

“Start now. Optimize later. An imperfect start can always be improved, but obsessing over a perfect plan will never take you anywhere on its own,” James Clear

“How can a magazine possibly hope to be relevant if it only has staff who can live in NYC on $45K? That salary is just code for “only apply if your parents pay your rent,” @lindsaycrouse

https://twitter.com/youyve/status/1352326254041522180

Video by Ricardo Esquivel from Pexels

Be The Tape Wizard You Want To See In The World

You don’t need to be a loud talker, have a $5,000 camera, a perfect studio, a big budget, or hours of time to “engage” and grow your audience.

There are success stories, sure. They can be deconstructed, taken apart and examined to figure out the “how” and “why,” but it’s nothing compared to the work.

The overnight success is 10 years in the making. The overnight success happens in a flash. Point being, if there were a map, a guide, everyone would be popular, all of the time.

There’s already a hundred “stars” who went viral, who crashed and burned, who’ve fizzled under the bright lights.

Do you work, craft your music, make your magic; everyone is waiting.

(video via Dino)

Daily Loop #21

Full steam ahead. Lots of work to do.

LIKES

“That ceremony was many things, but it was also a reminder that no one needs a one-hour work Zoom call. They fit in J-Lo, Lady Gaga, Garth Brooks plus all the other stuff in 30 minutes. Keep it tight folks,” @meganmurp

“Amanda Gorman reminding all of us of the power and necessity of art,” @annabrones

Video by Free Creative Stuff from Pexels