I’m staring a new project. By this time next year, I intend to release a new album of original songs. Let me tell you about what I have planned.
Keeping it real
The album will include ten new songs, all written by myself. It will be very much a bare-bones affair, which is in keeping with my ‘keep it real’ philosophy. So, the bulk of the instrumentation will comprise my voice, my two acoustic guitars and, of course, my beloved ukulele. I will probably include percussion and maybe a bit of bass and electric guitar. We’ll see.
In a perfect world, I’d love to record the album with a band. In my mind, most of the best music is the result of collaboration. Look at The Beatles! Due to circumstances, the band thing isn’t going to happen; however, I will be inviting other musicians to take part. I’d hate the album to sound too self-indulgent, like Paul McCartney’s debut solo album, McCartney. I’ll also be seeking plenty of feedback from friends. Hopefully they will be honest.
In these days of Spotify, of course, I’ll make the album available on streaming sites. However, considering the amount of time and effort I will be spending, I intend to release it in vinyl format for serious music listeners. I want to be responsible a product that people can hold and enjoy. So, like in the good-old-days, the album will include plenty of photos and reading material, like lyrics and credits.
Like most musicians, I don’t have a lot of money. So, I will be handling as much of the recording process as possible. I do have some experience with recording. For example, I studied at the School of Audio Engineering in Auckland, and I recorded my EP Urban Songs by myself at home. To be honest, the EP is far from perfect, so I learned a lot about what not to do, which will be useful for this project.
So, apart from a few guest musicians, I will be doing all the singing and playing. I will also handle the engineering by recording onto Protools using high-quality condenser microphones. I’ll have to choose the recording times carefully to avoid upsetting my neighbours.
My song ‘Sailing’
This is a song that appears on my EP Urban Songs. It won’t be be on my new album, but it will give you a taste of what the songs will probably sound like.
Getting the album out there
When I’m not playing music, I work as a professional writer. So, it makes sense for me to capitalise on my word skills to promote this project. Therefore, I will be writing weekly blog posts to keep you informed of my progress, and, of course, the challenges I undoubtedly will come up against.
I will also be publishing a live video on YouTube every Sunday at 1 pm. The songs I will film will include my favourite covers as well as acoustic versions of my new songs as I complete them. Check out my YouTube channel to listen to what I come up with. There are already heaps of videos there.
At this stage, I haven’t a clue about what to call this new album. Maybe you can help me? What’s a good name for an album of stripped-back acoustic songs focused on melody? If you have any ideas, please tell me in the comments section below.