Thoughts on Music in 2016

Ever since last fall, I have been gradually stepping away from my usual routine social media posts, and even my photography has been put on hold at times.  My focus has narrowed down to working on an album that has been in the making since 2013.  I wrote the last few songs in September and have been attempting to remain diligent about taking the steps to see this vision unfold.

I know I have mentioned the new album on quite a few occasions in the last year, but many of the details have either changed [like the title] or progressed since my last post.  I hit the ground running in January and never looked back.  My title track is already finished and at the mastering stage, and tonight I have plans to finish mixing a second.  With nearly two out of the ten tracks completed, I am right on schedule.

I started recording music at age eleven.  I can hardly believe that, as of this year, I am coming up on fifteen years of recording.  Thank God I have come a long way since my four-track recording days.  I would describe my initial setup as “ghetto”.  It was the bare minimum and I tried my best to utilize the resources that were available to me.  I am thankful that music is where I spent the majority of my free time growing up.  I can’t even imagine trying to pick it all up as an adult.

I took the last several years to experiment with better equipment, find a setup that works well for me, and then research and research and research . . . etc.

For the most part, I’ve been mainly putting out acoustic projects.  Due to limited resources, I have chosen to keep it simple.  However, there has always remained a desire to delve deeper and expand in my overall sound.  Acoustic music is not necessarily what I personally listen to or prefer.   The vision has always been to create and compose music that I like to listen to and take it from there.

My approach to recording has dramatically changed this year.  I am taking the advice of a few other recording artists by treating the time spent in my studio as a profession rather than a hobby.  I am now blocking out slots for studio time in my calendar, as well as making deadlines and weekly goals.  These are things that I used to consider a hinderance to natural creative flow, but now I am seeing that having this type of routine and structure is actually sparking more inspiration.  My time recording has been much more productive and I have been taking humungous leaps and bounds into areas of recording that I have longed to go.

By scheduling out my recording, I am now creating more of a balance in my week.  As many of you know, I work a full time job apart from my art.  In the past, I have burned myself out.  I would dive straight into a project after work, over do it, forget to rest, and then I wouldn’t touch the project for months . . . or ever.  I now schedule days off, which creates a healthy and much needed boundary, causing me to be refreshed and mentally prepared for my next studio session.

I plan to have When A Soul Weeps finished mid-April. It’s official release will not be until sometime in the summer.  I am working on a marketing plan and I am taking time to prayerfully consider my next steps.  In the near future, I will begin to release more information, perhaps a promo video, and share album art.  I am very excited.

What to call my genre is still up in the air.   I have been calling it “alternative/indie/electronic/experimental”, which is way too long and needs to be shortened.  “Alterna-die-electro-mental” is shorter, but it sounds like I have all sorts of problems.  We will cross that bridge when we get there. 😉

My faithful, furry companion, Chad has been very supportive in my recent endeavors.  We take many breaks together [As I am writing this, it is a huge struggle to see my computer screen.  His nose is pressed firmly against mine.] and go on walks to make sure we both stay healthy and active.  Taking breaks is another new thing for me.  Again, I have decided to not burn myself out this time around.  We love going out and sniffing every leaf in the forest . . . well, Chad does.

On that note, I have a walking date with my pup, and then a song to mix.  Check back soon for more updates!

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