Something to consider.
I live in Springfield Missour-uh, and let’s just say, there are a lot of trucks here, and I drive a Prius. I don’t live far from my studio, and when the weather is nice, I walk or ride my bike home. Though there is a bike lane, the other drivers here are NOT happy that I am taking up that extra two feet of space. It’s pretty normal that I get yelled at by a guy to “Get out of the f*cking road”. Or if I’m walking home, I often get called “Grizzly Man” or “Queer”- the latter when I’m wearing yellow socks in particular. It’s a very intimidating walk or ride home through the Missour-uh neighborhoods. Even when I’m driving, these people for some reason, think I want to race them at stop lights- in a Prius?? I feel like I’m from a different planet. It kind of feels like high school again. These are not my friends, but I do live among them.
So when I hear people talking about rumors of food shortages, the collapse of America, the downfall of civilization, the apocalypse, and how we’re all going to have to kill each other to survive, I feel justified in fearing that these people are going to kill me first. That is, until real life emergencies occur, and everyone proves me wrong.
Another part of living in Missour-uh, is that we frequently get ice storms that make it nearly impossible to drive in. But I’m not a home-body, so I go out and drive anyway like an idiot. The Prius does not do so well in these conditions. It gets stuck . A lot. But every time I do, those same people that are supposed to murder me in the apocalypse rush out of their trucks to pull me out. In this instance, the same people that usually ride two inches behind my back wheels, and driving 50 feet back making sure I don’t slide off again. These people drive around all night helping people like me get out of a bad situation. When the snow melts, it’s back to yelling from the cab of the truck, but during these situations there really is a sense of community.
It seems as though during times of danger, or tragedy, I see the best side of us. People running into burning buildings, people risking their own well being for the safety of others. You never have to look far during a hurricane, earthquake, or terrorist attack and find people running towards danger to help someone else. It almost seems instinctual. When all hell breaks loose on this earth, I will be happy that I live where I do, because these people I live beside are usually assholes. But when it matters, they’re amazing human beings.
Don’t waste your time listening to the voices on the radio that say that when push comes to shove, we will all turn on each other. It’s not who we are. And I don’t want to live near the person who thinks otherwise.
Thanks for reading.
I will do you the honors of posting the comment that many of you surely want to post:
“It’s nice that you see the world this way, but it’s not real. People get raped, stabbed, and murdered everyday. You’re delusional.”
Got it. Thanks.
Stacy, Darren and I have started working on new material. The process has been much different from the last album thus far, and I believe that is a good thing. It’s kind of a frenzy of ideas flying back and forth through email. I’ll record a drum track, email it to Darren, he’ll fix it and make it cool, add more tracks and a vocal idea from Stacy, send it back to me, along with the start of a drum track he recorded, etc. It’s a bit chaotic, but it’s really exciting. I’ve never done music this way before. Also, I learned a few new instruments that have taken center stage with this new material.
Thanks for reading.
My good friend Nathaniel puts on a songwriting workshop for kids every summer for one week here in Springfield. Last week, he asked me to come in and be a guest speaker. It was easily one of the highlights of my summer. Though the kids were young, they seemed to have a really solid grasp on the songwriting process and structure. For example, this boy was working on a rap based on the video game Mine Craft (read the lyrics!!):
Some of the kids drew picture of me:
That last one is my favorite of course.
There aren’t many things scarier in life than giving a talk to a room of kids. But they made it easy on me. They asked a lot of questions, and seemed really eager to learn. I am certain that within a matter of years, these kids will be taking jobs from old has-beens like myself. Thanks for reading.
I have a small collection of old reel to reel machines in my studio that don’t get much use. There are only a couple that are fully functional, but there is a way to get some good use out of pretty much all of them (and you don’t need tape!). Here is the one I used for this post:
All you do, is send a stereo signal from your computer to the machine, then use the stereo outs on the machine to run back into your computer. In this example, I sent a stereo drum buss into it. Next turn up the input gain on the machine until the meter starts clipping. That’s it! Here are two audio files, one with the “dry” drums, and one with the drums clipping through the machine.
Thanks for reading,
Today my Tube Tech Me1a arrived in the mail and I thought I’d give some general first impressions while it’s fresh on my mind. I was shopping for one of these for the past four months, and had a hard time finding a review online that was very helpful in making my decision to purchase one. My hope is that I will be able to provide the information that I never found online for potential buyers out there.
There are only slight differences between the Me1a and Me1b, so most of these notes should apply to both models. The Me1a is a single channel EQ that focuses on the mid range. It is most often used in conjunction with the Pe1c (another single channel Tube Tech EQ that covers the low, and high range; I own one of these as well). My obsession with the idea of this piece came from a video I saw where Gabriel Roth was talking about how much he used one on the Amy Winehouse record Back to Black. I’m guessing that this is at least in part, the reason that many websites selling this unit claim that it is responsible for getting that “Motown” sound- though you should note that Tube Tech was founded in 1977… Both of these EQ’s are Pultec clones, but I won’t go into detail about what Pultec EQ’s do- you can research that on your own.
As many people do, I developed an unhealthy belief that a single piece of equipment was going to be my “silver bullet” for getting a particular sound. I created a fantasy in my head of what this piece could do, without ever considering that there would be many things it could NOT do. So let’s get down to it, shall we?
The Me1a is not really a “silver bullet” for anything so far. It is, more accurately, the missing piece for it’s companion the Pe1c. As I mentioned above, it covers a frequency range not found in the Pe1c. Also, the Pe1c can create high and low shelves, but there isn’t a great way to scoop out or subtract frequency ranges. The Me1a is the remedy for this. It allows you to “dip” frequencies anywhere from 200 hz to 7khz. When you pair these two EQ’s together, you have the capability of creating some amazing curves and sounds. But even when you put the two together, this is not much of a precision EQ. They’re a sculpting EQ that can get you some really vibe-y sounds. In other words, they’re better as a sledge hammer, than a scalpel.
The Me1a also has two peak (bell shaped) EQ’s- one for the low mids, and one for the high mids. I have to admit, these will get very little use from me. These have a very narrow Q, and I tended to use them very sparingly- as a Q this narrow tends to make it’s peak frequencies stand out a bit too much. If I wanted a 5k boost, I found myself reaching for the Pe1c which again, has a much more broad Q.
But let’s step back for a moment, I don’t want you to underestimate the sound of these Tube Tech EQ’s!! When used with the right intentions, these are VERY powerful tools to have in your rack. I would tell you about the “silky” high end, or “punchy” low end, but those are terms used to describe EVERY PIECE OF EQUIPMENT ON THE MARKET!! So, I’m trying to stick with the facts here. No, you will not be using these specific models for mastering or anything surgical. But if you want to add vibe and personality to your tracks, these will work wonders.
So, the best way I can sum up my feelings about the Me1a is that it makes a great EQ (the Pe1c) an AMAZING EQ when you put the two together. But at a price tag of $2,700 each, you are essentially looking at a $5,400 single channel EQ. Is it worth it? To me, yes. But much more worth it if you can find them used for half that price:)
Hope this was helpful.