Mixing the Solo Record

God, this mixing thing is taking me FOREVER! My mixing chops have really gotten rusty. The last time I mixed was for the Beach Party record back in 2004. Gee, that was a decade ago. It's not just the rust though. It's really my first solo record since… I guess it's really the first. I don't seem to know when to stop changing and fixing things. I wish I could just bang out a records like Jack White but his chops are hot and it's not his 1st either. Anyway it's not for lack of decisiveness. No, it's more like, hey I just got a better idea for a part or, what if I add a concertina that sounds like a synth, that harmony is too high or that guitar is too dull.

That all being said, I do feel like I'm getting there. And when I listen to the current versions of the songs they really do sound better than previous versions. I also think I've got the order of the songs optimized, not that people listen to records in order anymore. I usually put my iTunes on randomize when I listen to my music. What the hell! I like to be surprised. But some people will, especially the first time they hear it, so I want it to be as good as it can be for that experience.

The title at the moment is Metaphysical Incantation. I've got a good idea of what my artwork should look like too and I'm getting there with my messing around with photoshop and illustrator. I don't know if I have the most perfect pictures but some of what I'm looking for is a magical and mysterious  quality that may only be generated by happy accidents.

So far the writing stage has been the most exciting part of this process. I haven't had a writing streak like that since I left BOC. I wrote 27 new songs, with completed demos, between November and March. I must credit my newest co-writer, Kathy Vargas, for co-writing 19 of them. We've known each other for almost 40 years but this is the first time she has written songs. She is better know for her magical-realist photographs. Her words and works have appeared in 5 books and she has several book covers to her credit. It was more collaborative than many of my past writing partnerships because we would generate ideas for the songs through our conversations before writing any words or music.

When the record is finally finished I will post the complete lyrics on this website. I would do it now except there is always a chance I will change a word here or there if I decide to re-sing any more vocals.

Leave a comment