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Initial Crystallization
music
josephmancuso

I wanted to make a fast post to happily report that the first few "test" tracks for the spoken-word project referred to in my last post (et al.) are under review. While this is a far cry from claiming any substantial completion of the final audio for the record, it does represent the first actual recorded product that has come of the effort so far.

Despite its relative simplicity when compared to a full-up musical album, some of the aspects of this project have proven challenging.

First and foremost, there's the matter of trying to do this on a budget -- by which i mean without spending any money at all -- which in turn means working with only the very limited recording gear that i have on hand. This isn't insurmountable, but certainly starts me out right away in a position where i have to worry about having to trade professionalism for progress.

Related to this is the second issue, which has to do with the style of production that i want to pursue. Some of my inspirations for this album are recordings that feature spoken word set brilliantly over musical backgrounds, sound effects, and/or with various treatments to add diversity and depth to the work. While some of these things might be within my reach, they add substantial additional production time and potentially more quality trade-offs to balance, putting the project at a greater risk of not getting done on time.

The third and last main item on this list is actually something of a good problem to have: i found way more "contender" material than i expected. This was a pleasant surprise, to be sure, but also now requires me to think a little harder about how to select material. The final picks need to account not only for my target total runtime, but also for things like mood balancing, themes, and at least a little consideration of what material i might want to leave over for future productions.

My response to the first two items so far is leaning very much toward the KISS (Keep It Simple, Stupid) philosophy. This is largely in part to the fact that, for as much as i am devoted to taking my art seriously, it still gets very little of my time given other life priorities. Past experience has shown (and i'm sure many North fans will agree) that workaday activities have a way of continually derailing my creative pursuits, often vastly delaying (if not downright preventing) their completion.

Challenges notwithstanding, i'm still very very excited about this project, and i'm happy to see the first of its products starting to take shape. If things go very well, i could potentially have something creatively rewarding and reasonably professional put together by around the New Year, which would be a great way to ring it in.

Above all, sincere thanks to all who stick with me and manage to not lose interest given my compromised pace. I hope to have more to share with you soon.


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