My name's Dave. I'm working on it.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Yessir, the Check Is in the Mail

Thanks to everyone who gave me feedback on my songs, as rough as they are. For the most part, I'm proud of them. I went over the lot today making notes about how each will be tightened up for when I record my Proper Album, and I think I'll keep as many as 11 of the 14 for the final project. Some need a good bit of work, but some came into being, through some miracle, fully-formed and ready for their close-up. Funny how that works. I guess it's just a by-product of deadline-fueled creating. As my friend Lindsey put it: when you punch enough holes in the card, once in awhile you get one for free.
It works out well enough for me that I have to wait until April to claim my free membership at CD Baby (as a result of finishing and donating to FAWM). I'd thought I'd have to rush to get the songs re-tracked and off to them, but it turns out I have a bit of breathing time to do it properly. April 1st is a good deadline to aim for. And once that's all said and done, dear readers, I might just have a finished CD that you can actually spend money to hear.
That is a strange, strange thought.
In other news, I've fallen (again) into the trap of excess downloading. In the place of OiNK (or maybe they were there all along, and I just didn't know it?) I've been made aware of a handful of the mp3 blogs that exist solely to provide free access to all sorts of good new music, usually months before it is due out. It's an interesting balance they strike; it's all listed as strictly promotional on the sites, and users are encouraged to support the artists. They even offer to take down links upon request (quite a few labels make such a request, and they are honored). But it's remarkable how, with a little resourceful googling, most things can be acquired easily. It really reinforces the argument for OiNK: that torrent sites are not the villains responsible for pirated music; they are merely one tool of many. The music is out there. It can be found through proper internet channels if you just know where to look. When you use acceptable methods to steal music, who is responsible? Is it more ethically reprehensible to download an album than to check it out from the library and then rip it personally? The only difference is a little patience and (probably) a better quality set of mp3s. But no one gets paid in either instance...
And while it's wonderful to have a new source of music, the constant influx is again becoming problematic. I need to slow down...
I was sitting at home this evening feeling a bit stir-crazy, and so decided that an evening of semi-mindless entertainment was in order. I hied me out to the Laurelhurst to watch the new Will Smith vehicle I Am Legend with my friend Nate. While it was certainly not a bad film (at least not according to the standards I hold such films to), it was, I'm told, not even close to being on par with the book it was based on - which should come as no surprise, given the way these things go - but I couldn't help but wish they'd tried a bit more to retain some of the psychological depth that the story hinted at. With such subject matter, there's such potential to really explore the kind of thoughts and delusions that one would suffer when being the only survivor in a post-apocalyptic world. But no, instead they chose to pair him with a buddy-dog and use Bob Marley's music as a metaphor for struggling against the darkness of hatred and injustice (and, you know, annihilation) And I might add, at the risk of spoiling a minor plot point, that they risk all credibility by suggesting that one character has lived so far under a rock that she's never heard of Bob Marley. Damien Marley, yes, but Bob who? Come on.
Despite all this, it was a good popcorn movie.
Though next week is really going to be a treat, as not only has No Country for Old Men finally come to the beer theaters, but this week's feature film is none other than Big Trouble in Little China. Oh yes.
Anyway. Enough rambling. With all this talk about new sites and music, the least I can leave you with is a few links and songs to enjoy. I'll even throw in a tune I recorded a few days ago, in which I taught myself how to over-use the reverb plug-in while covering Lesley Gore. You should really listen to it in headphones to hear the full silliness in effect.

mp3 blogs:
Pop Apocalypse
Robin Hood of Indie Music 2
Le Shake

Some songs I'm really liking:

The Mountain Goats - Sax Rohmer #1
John Darnielle has become one of my personal heroes lately. Seeing him perform was like a revelation; as my friend J put it, if he didn't write and sing his songs, he would die. Amen.
The Minus 5 - Cemetery Row
This band is new to me. It seems they specialize in writing groovy, front-porch country pop music and then get all their friends to sing on their albums. Colin Meloy handles the vocals on this one.
Of Montreal - Wraith Pinned to the Mist and Other Games
Listen to this song and just try to keep from dancing.
Jens Lekman - Julie (Rmx)
I know I'm late to the party on this guy, but better late than never... he sure does write a mean pop tune. And the voice grows on you too.
Retribution Gospel Choir - Breaker
Ever wondered what Low would sound like if they rocked a bit more? Look no further.


Doubtful Guest - What Am I Gonna Do With You? (Lesley Gore cover)

Oh, and last but not least, I've decided to add a little Paypal Donation button to my blog, taking inspiration from Dorothy over at Cat and Girl. If you feel inclined to support my less-than-lavish lifestyle, I will (in straight rip-off fashion) draw you a picture depicting what I do with it and mail it to you. I certainly believe that people should get something back for their generosity, but if a drawing isn't your cup of tea, email me and we can work something out.
And remember:
When some wild-eyed, eight-foot-tall maniac grabs your neck, taps the back of your favorite head up against the barroom wall, looks you crooked in the eye and asks you if ya paid your dues, you just stare that big sucker right back in the eye, and you remember what ol' Jack Burton always says at a time like that.

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