On Sunday 22 May 2016, I made a decision: I will use a week of vacation to compose, record all the instruments and make an album’s worth of instrumental music.
Why? Fighting procrastination and non-completion. For decades, I would record something, pluck a little bit, and not complete any meaningful material or album.
In the past week I succeeded in this plan. I composed 16 tunes in the first two days, picked 8 to record, and here is the Project Deadline 2016.
As soon as I made a decission, there was a creative fire under my ass; the equivalent of a good positive shove. Two words I kept telling myself: focus and finish. All my life I have been playing; I have a bunch of instruments, software, computers, microphones, cables and amplifiers. Now I decided to use them to focus and make a snapshot of an era.
The point is that the deadline can be stimulating. When you have a deadline and target – then you have the focus and no more excuses: I need more time, I need another piece of equipment, I would like to hear this recorded by a special drummer, singer has no time …
If audio is not enough for you, you can also see all the Project Deadline songs in this Youtube playlist. I would much appreciate if you would actually listen to all of them. 🙂
This album, although I published it, is in fact a very personal quest. This type of process can be creatively stimulating: it is liberating when you realize that you simply have to make a decision now. On the other hand, short timeframe definitely does not contribute to the quality of the final product. Of course the recordings are not perfect but I think they have some artistic value. Personally, my biggest challenge was to make videos because that was something I never did before. I learned a lot during this week and most importantly – I enjoyed the creative process.
During the project I remember late friend Vedran Šamanović several times – at the same time he used to make movies, play and record with the band, paint as a creative outlet Bulog … Vedran, one of the songs is for you.
p.s. what’s next? It’s amazing how the work on this project focused energy and immediately opened up new possibilities. The next steps are:
- Playing this material live
- Regularly record new material (within short timeframe)
- Repeat this concept, but with singers
So, beware because there is more to come! If you want to receive information about new music, sign up for my newsletter and I would be glad to if you would write a comment or share this music with friends.
p.s. just for guitar nerds, here is the list of equipment I used:
- Cats KD-2 (hand made). Mahogany/maple super strat (Pensa Suhr copy), DiMarzio Humbucker from hell in neck and PAF Pro in bridge
- Red sparkle (hand made). Basswood super strat, DiMarzio ProTrack (?) in neck and Kramer pickup in bridge.
- Bass: Fender Jazz
- Hotone Soul Press wah
- Joyo US Dream – all overdriven/distortion sounds
- Zoom MS-50G – delays
- Harley Benton American Sound – main preamp for direct recording, instead of a microphone
- Mixer: Behringer Eurorack MX 602A
- Sound card: M-Audio Audiophile Delta (the simplest model they made, integrated in PC)
- Computer: an old desktop PC
- Cameras: LG G4 and LG G3
- Music software:
- Tracktion – main DAW. I only used stock effect plugins
- EZ Drummer – drums
- Absynth – synths
- 4 Front Piano
- Video software: Windows Video Maker
- Android: Four Tracks Lite (simple idea capturing tool)
- Photo editing: Canva
essential reading: Record or Die