Wednesday, 30 April 2008

The End of April

So another month has dawned it's final day and as I did, for the first time in my life, set myself some goals I suppose I'd better see how I did. I have them written up on my wall so let's have a look...

1. Buy stuff. That was the mic and camera if you can remember back that far, I did get those, haven't got the amp but I wasn't sure about that. I still think I need one though. But that's a success!

2. Video and blog every week. There was one week when I was a day late blogging I seem to remember, but I also remember that the lovely Mandy Kelly pointed out that if you consider each week to be the standard Sunday - Saturday, I in fact did blog every week this month! Loopholes for the win. The videos had no close calls, in fact one week I uploaded three! So I'm calling this one a success.

3. Record 'Don't Go'. This one I've pretty much done, there is a trumpet in it which I had to do with MIDI (a keyboard) and it would be nice to get a real trumpet on it, but that's beyond me at the moment so I couldn't really have done it. I'm not sure whether to look for someone to do it, or to look for a trumpet to borrow and figure it out myself. I tend to prefer the latter.

4. Write two songs. EPIC FAIL. Haven't written any full songs. I did rediscover an old one that I hadn't thought about in months (Alone Again) and it's going on the EP I think. So having gained a song for the EP, I've not lost too much ground here. However, I didn't write and I need to. I could say ok just say 'write one song' to make it easier next month, but I think I need to go the other way, so I might say write four songs. But I'll leave May until tomorrow.

5. Put up shelves and guitar wall hanger thing. Done.


So overall not bad for my first month. I'm looking forward to thinking about next month's goals, especially as I'm all excited about this collabs EP idea, I expect that should feature quite heavily, and as I won't be such a perfectionist/twat about that as my actual EP I'm hopeful that progress will be a lot faster, of course relying on other people means I won't have complete control, but I'm looking forward to that too.

With the completion on goal #5, my 'post it wall' has turned into a 'post it shelf', they are all in a line stuck the the new shelf in front of me, and it's filling up. Fast. So I'm going to try saying no to people, something which I'm very bad at. But it must be done.

Well, enough for now, the champions league semi final is starting.

See you in May. 

Oh p.s. the blog seems to be working, I'm writing regularly and so I had a look around and managed to start archiving the posts into months. I'll be honest, I'm not sure if it was doing this already, I didn't check, but it is now and that's all that matters.

Collab ep?

A thought occurred to me today. Well actually it began last night when Jay put up this video. I was watching it and I kept singing along, playing along, just generally having to press play again and again. Then I thought of a message Nikki had sent me about a week ago 'warning' me that she was thinking of  stealing the audio from one of my videos and adding to it, she showed me a video in which she'd done it before and it was really good, but I said fuck that lets just do a song properly... But I'll get back to that. I couldn't get enough of this song, a Radiohead cover by the way, 'A Wolf at the Door'. So I decided to give Nikki's idea a go.

I ripped the song and added a guitar track, some vocals, strings, just spent a few hours playing with the song. Anyway I really enjoyed doing it and I like the end product too. Having finished it I asked Jay if it would be ok... I find that's a much better way around than getting permission first, then what if they say no?! Of course he never would but it could have turned out rubbish then I wouldn't want him to know! So if you're interested it's now on myspace.

Anyway this got me really enthusiastic for the collabs I have planned and as you've probably guessed having read the title, I'm thinking of releasing them all together as an ep. It'll be free I imagine as they will be cover songs - and I will probably let people download them as soon as each one is ready as I do with all my covers, but once I have 5 or 6 I can get some artwork and do a video with a link to a free download to the full collab ep.

So there's a plan! So far I have agreed to do a song with Nikki as I mentioned before, Ivens, and I want to do one properly with Jay. But now I have this idea I might approach people. Not sure who but I'll keep it in the youtube family I imagine, and I'll think about the ep as I go, I reckon I'll probably ask Ben and Ed and I could do with another girl... EMILY! She did this song for school or something, it was really good. Haven't talked to her in ages though. I guess that's the ep already full if they all say yes so I better stop thinking of people! Though I recently discovered a whole load of very talented Dutch blues guitarists! Who knew?

Haha I just thought of davedays, I might ask him to do one... Blatantly won't but fuck it - can't hurt to ask! His cover of that Alicia Keys song was great.

I also want to do a bigger musical collab, get three of four people in. Not sure of any youtuber that plays and can record drums well, that would be quite an important part. Any suggestions?

Oh also today I pretty much finished recording 'Don't Go' which was one of the month's goals. I'll do a proper blog about the successes and failures of the goals in a day or two. But I'm glad to have that one done.


Finally and totally off topic, and in fact I'm writing this several hours after the rest, All English Champions League final! Brilliant! But... It's in Moscow. What the fuck? Screw that - play it at Wembley!

Wednesday, 23 April 2008

Happy St. George's Day

Hello friends and a happy St. George's Day to you!

May it be filled with thoughts of tea and scones, Shakespeare and Sassoon, football and cricket, The Queen and Stephen Fry, The Thames and The Tyne, The Beatles and The Clash, "hearts at peace, under an English heaven" and "Their finest hour", The Houses of Parliament, The White Cliffs of Dover, The Angel of the North and Stonehenge, and a red cross on a white background.

The sun is out and it's beautiful.

Friday, 18 April 2008

Get signed. Get famous.

I've received a lot of comments over the passed few months from people telling me I should get signed by some major record label, and even more often that I should 'be famous'.

The idea of being famous frankly horrifies me.

Recognition is another matter. I'd love for my music to be known and liked by more people. Getting signed is a tricky one, because it does lead to a bigger audience, but I just don't think I'm ready for that. I'm recording an ep right now and no one has touched it apart from me. I like that. I want to be able to look back at this, because it will always be the first ep I ever made, and I want it to be mine. Maybe that sounds greedy, but if there's a time and a place to be greedy it's in controlling your own artistic freedom.

I posted a video of a song today that I think might go on the end of the ep. It's played on piano which would add something different to the guitar based songs I have so far. I like the lyrics. I think they're clever. this is a big thing for me because usually I don't like the things I write. That's why I only have about 7 completed songs. They are the only ones I was happy with the lyrics. You should see how many half written songs I have!

I know I failed to write a blog every week, but I've done three videos this week and as videos are more important I'm going to let myself off the hook! Still need to get songwriting. Driving to london and back this weekend and for once I'm not actually doing the driving, that should be a good time to write. Then again in my experience, good times never get results, it's the really inconvienient times that great songs come from.

Thursday, 10 April 2008

In accordance with goal #2.

Which was to post a video and a blog at least once a week, meaning I have to write a blog before midnight. This has put me in an unfamiliar situation, usually I come and write something because I have something I want to write, but this one is because I told myself I would. I guess an update on how the goals for April are going. The first one was to buy myself some new toys! A good place to start and it has been done. Today I recorded a video with my new camera using my new microphone... while looking at my new shelves! So that's numbers one and five (5 = shelves) crossed off the list. This post and the afore mentioned, and currently uploading, video keeps goal number 2 on track. Three and four I've made no progress on, but they were really waiting for the new mic so hopefully next week I'll have more to report.

So going quite well so far, despite the close call on this post!

This Saturday is Alex's gathering. Now, I know we have a lot of gatherings but that doesn't make it feel ok to miss one for some reason! I want to go to this just as much as I did Manchester last month, and I'm sure I will Glasgow in May. I still only see these people, many of whom I consider to be very good friends, every month or two, so it's important to me. This one has the added feature of being Alex's birthday, and as I'm staying at his, the first time I will have been to another youtubers house... Just realised that's a total lie - I've been to Jazza's . Nevermind. The point is I'm excited for another weekend in London. Actually I'll be there next weekend as well as it's my cousin's birthday... did somebody say 'musicals' themed fancy dress?! Suggestions for what to go as are welcome.

Oh the video just uploaded! I was worried because youtube messed up earlier but it seems to have fixed itself. I think it's a good one. Let's see how it goes down! (I love this part.)

I'm off to watch youtube star - the newest youtube craze.

Speak soon my lovelies.

Wednesday, 2 April 2008

Ok Alex, you have inspired me!

To set myself some goals for the month of April. 

I need something to aim at because I can easily do nothing for long periods of time. So I need to think about what I want to do this month. Well we've just finished, and won, Upstaged, so it's a positive time to start! I'll write a proper blog on that experience soon. Anyway, I already pretty much have planned out where my share of the money is going so I will make sorting that out goal number one:

  1. Buy microphone, video camera and amp. (The last one may change if I think of something more important.)

What else? I should have something about my websites, I think:

  2. Post at least one video and one blog every week.

I'll try for more but we'll see how it goes then maybe May's goals can be more ambitious! Also I don't think I should set a goal on subscribers because I don't feel like I have any control over that.

SONGS! This is gonna be the most important one, I need to make myself write and once goal 1 is done I can start recording again. So I think I'll say:

  3. Record 'Don't go' full length. (I already have a short version that went on the 'talk with dave and benloka' show)

  4. Write at least 2 full songs, chords and lyrics.

Again not too ambitious, but it's my first month! Plus I'm hardly a prolific writer.

So yay for me becoming more organised! I'm going to put these up on my wall somewhere, oh and speaking of walls:

  5. Put up those shelves and guitar wall hanger thing that I've had lying around since christmas!

Right then, that's April sorted. Now I just have to... you know - do it.