Thursday, March 16, 2017

Faced With It

I am half-dreading the going out to play tonight. It is 10:09 PM right now.

Not because the prospect is so daunting; it's a Thursday night and it is the kind of chilly outside that will actually feel just right after about 20 minutes of busking. That is when I might say to myself "I'm so glad I came out. I can do all of that other stuff at the house whenever. Right now it is prime time to play!"

I suppose I will feel better after I get there. 

I can tell myself with every turn of the pedals on the way in: "Hey, If I don't like what I see, I can just turn around and go back home," as I hold the carrot in front of my own nose of a Monster Energy drink and smoking weed while I tune up, as the lowest common denominator in enjoying myself, at least, out there.

I'm organizing folders into MUSIC, which will have, of course, all of my music, then AUDACITY will have the projects I'm working on, in Audacity format. These might consist of just a guitar and a voice that I already mixed into stereo and put into MUSIC as a solo acoustic rendition, but that I plan upon adding perhaps additional guitars and voices to, and maybe a shaker and/or my snare drum, etc.

Then there is the BUSKING folder which is governed by the "Master List," a text document at its head.

The Master List will have all songs -past, present and future*, that I can think of off the top of my head, and can add to after searching through online resources such as alphabetical listings of "all the bands of all time," plus the songideas that come to me during the day, that I just have to pull my phone out and record the title of, in order to subsequently add to the WISH LIST folder.

The "songs that I can think of," will be the result of putting my mind into a resourceful state and then just trying to think of all the songs that I once used to love to sing, and artists that I could "do" pretty well back then. 

An example would be things like "Is She Really Going Out With Him?" by Joe Jackson -a song that I could belt out right along with the radio, back in 1978, and "kind of sound just like the guy," by an artist who is in my vocal range, and who has a modest catalog of additional material. 

I might go years without remembering that Joe Jackson ever existed, and so, grabbing my phone and saying "Joe Jackson" into the voice recorder will insure that his work finds its way onto one of my lists.

I have a head start in learning any material that I at one time, sang along with the radio to.

One never knows when a "You know what song would be great?" moment is going to arrive. It only takes a few seconds to bark: "'Love Stinks,' by The J. Geils Band!" into a phone...

Note: Joe Jackson's song "Stepping Out," is a great fit for the Lilly Pad, as is "Is She Really Going Out With Him?" So is "Stepping Out," by Tony Bennett, for that matter...

The only disqualification would be if there is a song that I am capable of playing and singing that I've just grown tired of. For example, I think that I have grown out of the whole "teenage wasteland" thing by The Who, and gotten over that "wow, that chord is just one finger; I can play that!" rush of exhilaration.

The SET LIST folder will basically be a printable list and a reminder to me of what songs that I could actually play "on the spot." For example, this list (which I could have laminated and updated every 6 months) would have had the following songs listed under "Elton John:"

"Your Song,"
"Crocodile Rock,"
"Bennie and the Jets,"
"Rocket Man,"
"I Guess That's Why They Call It The Blues,"

And they would have been right in front of me when a certain tourist came along and told me that his wife, whom he was with, "loves Elton John."
Then, instead of drawing a blank after having played "Rocket Man," and not wanting to slow things down at the time with "Your Song," I would have been able to hit them off with another uptempo Elton favorite, that I know, but had forgotten that I know. Set lists are a very useful resource.

Then, there will be the WISH LIST folder which will hold a subset of the MASTER LIST in the form of songs that I would love to be able to play, but haven't learned yet. The full version of "Terapin Station," by the Grateful Dead would be in this folder, along with "Kid Charlemagne," by Steely Dan, along with stuff that I wish I knew for other, perhaps commercial, reasons, such as the oft requested "Wonderwall," by Oasis, "Wish You Were Here," by Pink Floyd, "Wagon Wheel," by the traveling crows medicine cabinet, or whatever band, et al.

Each folder will be further divided inside with
  • an mp3 recording of the song
  • a lyric sheet for the song
  • the chords for the song
Between the three, I should find what I am lacking in putting the song together, a missing section, a part where I sing the same verse twice, etc...

1 comment:

alex carter said...

Apparently yesterday was St. Patrick's Day, wherein Irish people follow the ancient tradition of wearing plastic green shamrocks and plastic green trilby hats and get shitfaced on green beer and try to sing "Danny Boy" while trying to not piss their pants. Did you have a good night?