Archive for April, 2010

First public booking of the summer

I love getting the first booking of the summer confirmed. Love it. I’m in talks with a bunch of different venue managers and should have a lot of dates to announce, hopefully soon. But this is the first one confirmed. It’s Dara solo, not the whole band, for reasons probably obvious:

May 13, 2010, Kirkland Wednesday Market, Marina Park, Kirkland, Washington. Time TBA.

If it’s their usual thing, they’ll have a stage tent and some audience seating. But it might be the gazebo, which would be nice. And also funny, because gazebo!

Hey, should I do this?

Hey, waddya think, should I do The Stranger‘s Gong Show? “Shout at the Desert” fits in four minutes, it’s played on a Weird Instrument (Irish bouzouki), and I don’t need anything more than the mic and an amp they provide. Hell, you see any reason not to do it? ‘Cause if you don’t, I think I should.

Assuming my voice is back, I mean. This sucks. I’m on day 3.5 of antibiotics and I feel fine except for my throat which is still lumpy and stupid. (This is how I always get sick: I get tired and a sore throat and generally that’s all there is to it.)

This throat fuckery is really starting to bother me badly. I almost had an emotional breakdown on Friday because I cannot, cannot, cannot stand the idea of my voice getting fucked up on me the day after I lay down the best fucking vocal tracks I’ve ever laid down ever, and I keep having nightmares (daymores?) about not being able to sing anymore now that I’m finally making my voice start to do the things I want it to do. Then I found out “oh look, I have strep” and thought “okay! Tuesday was just the start of symptoms and I got strep throat last weekend. I can deal with that. Hello, antibiotics! Glad to see you [nom].”

But I should be feeling better in the throat by now and I’m not. So I’m getting all fucked up again and I can’t find the name of that ENT on the eastside who sees all the Seattle Symphony Chorale people and is a specialist at working with singers and and and hate.

I hate this so much. It feels like every time I have a srs breakthrough I get a facepunch back in change and have to recover from that. This is yet another one of those times and I’m just AGJKJAHFLSUGFLIUEFGWKUYFD!!! I want to punch some things BUT MY ARMS ARE TOO FUCKED UP adhsflalifuhalweifuhawel (no they’re not worse they’re just the normal bad. But that’s bad enough.)

I should take my antibiotic and go to bed. Today was actually a pretty good day other than that. I did some Norwescon wrap-up, all my laundry, some post-tax paperwork cleanup, and today is housecleaning day and I was a sparkling fury of housekeeping, even where the cats threw up hairballs overnight, like they do. I got a lot of stuff done. I just want a throat that works.


…it looks like I can edit together two takes I already have. They’re really pretty reasonable. A couple of timing issues but nothing I can fix with tiny snips, and there are a couple of places with a bit of level issues (a couple of notes are a tad hot, a couple are a little too restrained) but I need to learn automation anyway, and it’ll be a good exercise. (Not just for here.) I could fix the three or four problems with that, and maybe should do. And most importantly, Anna likes it. ^_^

This song is mostly on the high end – it’s all mandolin and percussion – so having a bass solo over the bridge really throws it into tonal balance. The bass is as big a surprise here as the flute is on “Artefacts,” but without the shrieking. Ha! I wish I’d thought of that on purpose. Maybe in the liner notes I’ll call it an intentional counterpoint.

take that, primus

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA “Let Me Help” gets a bass guitar solo TAKE THAT PRIMUS!

Really, it’s far too sedate to be compared to anything Primus – “Let Me Help” is Dick Tracy Must Die‘s only slow song, a ballad that I wrote to Anna, and I mean, I’ve only been playing bass a month, so, um, yeah. But it is an actual bass solo, and it’s totally the right thing to do here. I’ll need to re-record parts of it ’cause I’m only good enough to fake it in studio, not get it all right in one take, but the idea is down now.

(Jazz background peeking out? The deuce you say! Hi, have you met my flutework?)

Really, things are moving along pretty well. “Let Me Help” got a couple of new tracks today (including BASS SOLO lulz) and some more remixing, and I fiddled a little more with “Thought You Knew” and even “Artefacts” which got some more mixing clues added and they help. And I discovered (as was kind of inevitable) what kind of driving bodhran line “Stay Away” is going to have. Productive elf is productive.

…it's full of stars!


i’m rerecording the vocals tomorrow because now i finally see where i’m trying to go

and it is epic

Back from Norwescon

Back from Norwescon, and am wiped out. But it was awesome. I met the local nerdcore band Death*Star; They’re playing the Blue Moon on April… 29th, I think? Verify the date, and then go see them. We traded EPs, and their Saturday night show was rawked the haus.

Also met up with the effervescent Tricky Pixie, and got to talk with Alec about mixing techniques – he’s been producing his own CDs for years, whereas I’m still learning what kind of shit I have to learn – and just catch up for a bit. (Tricky Pixie just wrapped up a tour – this was their last stop of the spring – but will be playing in Oregon at the end of July.)

My biggest regret is that I missed him and Vixy and Tony doing a workshop on recording techniques. Tony operates Monkey Brains Studios and has a good ear. (V&T’s next show is May 29th, in Seattle). I hope somebody who was there took notes.

Then as things wound down, a bunch of the bands got together for a big jam session on Sunday. That was all kinds of fun.

And now that the studio computer is done updating and rebooting, it’s time to test some of these suggestions. Fingers crossed.

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