Well, it’s that time of year again.
Most of you reading this will probably have noticed that most of the blog posts this year have been excerpts from my guides (see the menu at top-left of this page). Truth is, I’ve been exceptionally busy with other music work and haven’t had the time or energy to write much new stuff. In no particular order:
- My production and promotion work has been growing and maturing. I’ve had the good fortune to work with some really impressive artists on some exciting projects. Looking forward to seeing them released over the next few months.
- I’ve been photographing and reviewing local gigs. This has been fun. Photography is so much like music it’s uncanny. There’s the gear lust, the different genres to specialise in, the importance of skill and technique, the combination of technical and emotional expertise.
- I’ve even started up a magazine in the last couple of months. This has been a real trip. I’m so grateful for my amazing team. It’s been extremely stressful and equally rewarding. It’s also demanded a huge amount of my focus and energy for the last six months.
- My studio’s now got two pianos, I’ve been buying more hardware for recording and mixing and almost completely stopped using plugins for mixing (using only Cubase’s built-in effects when needed).
- My own music project Bare Toes Into Soil has been live on stage a bunch of times and we’ve released a mixtape of remixes and collaborations. I’m exceptionally pleased with the mixtape – sonically it’s probably the best work I’ve done.
It’s great to be able to look back and be proud of what I’ve put my effort into.
But right now, on New Year’s Eve, I feel that I’m in a strange place. I’ve made my whole life about music, and yet right now I feel the least excited about it as I’ve ever been. My other business projects (and there are more coming) have motivated and invigorated me, but I don’t feel a lot of energy for making my own music. Maybe it’s because I’ve been putting my creative focus into other avenues. Maybe I’ve been under too much stress to be as creative as I’d prefer. Maybe I feel some futility in putting so much effort into making music that few people will hear or care about. Maybe it’s all of the above.
I’m also feeling like I need a break from writing. Or maybe I need to take a break from structured writing. I’ve been working on a new book for artists that’ll be released at the end of January. I’ve spent years writing on this blog. I think I’ve probably said about as much as I care for now about composing, producing, recording, mixing, mastering, etc.
So, what next?
- I’ve got a bunch of projects about to pop out of the pipeline. That’ll all become clearer over the next month. That’s pretty exciting, and definitely my best work so far.
- I’m not sure what I’ll be doing on the music front. I’d like to continue Bare Toes Into Soil, but I don’t yet know what pace I’ll take it. I’ve also started a new music project – all distorted drum machines and angry guitars. After so many years of atmospheric electronica, I’m feeling that it might be the right time for me to return to some heavier music.
- This blog will continue, but I think I’ll make it a bit more personal. It doesn’t have to be a technical resource. It doesn’t have to be robotically published every Monday on the dot. I’ll write a bit more about what’s going on in my world. It might be a bit more opinionated. It might veer a little from production talk. It might not be published on Mondays.
Let’s see what happens.