Thursday, 26 January 2012

The First Test

Today is song day again, and it's the first time since starting this when I feel a little up against it. The first couple of weeks of January are always a little bit less busy for me, with a lighter workload, the post-Christmas lull, etc. Now, however, things are starting to gear up again. I'm having a very busy week, and it's only going to get busier in the coming weeks and months. The time available to sit and write songs is shrinking. Other priorities are starting to snap at my ankles. Add to this that this is the first week since starting this project that I haven't really been in the mood, and it suddenly feels a little harder.
It could potentially be argued, then, that there is a certain sense in charging people and being paid for the process, in order to keep it high priority, but I still don't buy that. The temptation to throw out any old tat and fulfil obligations with as little consideration as possible hasn't yet been higher - though I suspect it will get higher as external pressures mount - yet, I can't see how having to justify a payment is going to do anything to alter that. It may make you a bit more careful about mentioning it, but you'd feel it just the same.
In fact, the thing that makes it easier is the knowledge that I'm under no obligation to do it at all. It's just a challenge I've set myself, and I could stop at any time. If I had to do it to fulfil a financial obligation, it would suddenly be feeling very much like putting a shift in at a factory or somesuch; it would start feeling depressingly like work. I thank my lucky stars I don't owe you anything. I can crack on with this week's song, lighter of heart because of it.
Which is just as well, as I've decided to make the song quite dark. Last week I did a song with quite an upbeat, optimistic lyrical content, and I felt it was a bit of a dud. There were people who liked it, but I didn't feel it was quite 'me' - a view expressed by a couple of other people too.
Of course, that hardly matters. The finished song isn't the point, and public reaction to it barely figures. It's the process that is important. The point is to write a song a week, record it, and disseminate it, free of charge, to whoever wants it. That's the principle. What the actual song is and whether you or I like it is irrelevant. No offence.
Anyway, it's 12:45pm and I want this done by 2pm at the latest - I have things to do - and so far, all I've got is the idea I want it a bit darker, a blank page and a couple of hours. There's no music running round my head, no lyrics, nothing.
This should be interesting.
*UPDATE - from blank page to uploaded mp3 took exactly one hour. Properly thrown together, only four tracks, only one vocal.
The song is called: 'A Pat on the Back (We're all rubbish), and here it is: