This Is Fine

I wrote a song yesterday (last day/night) which I have not done in ages.

some scratch-lyrics I did in prep that week. Before recording started.

It was written in a very brief amount of time. I don’t know how close I am to making it something I feel songfully about. I don’t know if I got this blog entry about it right. I don’t typically write “song bios.” I was thinking about starting to make videos about my process. Before I didn’t. It seemed self indulgent. But maybe I ought to get over this, and get out here. I ought to admit that I am interested in myself, because people are interesting and I am actually not a cynical person.

I wrote this blog entry last night in the dead of night and hit publish quickly–much like I rushed to get my song entry into the Song Fight people last minute. This time, I am going to say I got my point across through mood and content rather than through production and flash. Now I don’t believe that mixing properly is bad, not at all, I just think that in my case the pursuit of perfection holds me back from the actual composition of the thing.

I was going for a feeling of detached concern and a deeply passionate but distanced advocacy. Sort of surfing the breakers of white guilt.

White guilt is a fraught, bullshit topic and there is really no pretty way to be frank about it. Its awkward how atrocious my presence is in this conversation, no matter what I would say, even if it is helpful. This is not about me in the least. I wanted to try to explain this last night, because if you don’t say anything you are just wearing your fuzzy blanket, really.

I have wanted to explain it before. But wanting to explain a horrible thing and NEEDING to explain a horrible thing and having a responsibility either to DO or to JUST SHUT UP or to Show Up quietly is sometimes a thing that it is on just each Individual to navigate. Thusly, this is a song TO me, and for my sake and feelings. There’s a “you know why” line that’s an elephant in the room. And it’s addressing people like me because we know why all of those things in the song and we’re “sure that…” Ellipsis. Because what can one add to the conversation?

In the song I talk about being at the end of a life but paradoxically knowing you’re “not going to die.” This basically means that there’s a likelihood of a long life and statistics are kind if you are privileged in society. I used a lot of words like ‘lies’ and ‘smile’ and ‘sneak’ and ‘teeth.’ Words that make my voice sound tinny and cause hastily applied last minute effects to jar a bit. I wanted some more little treasures I may add later and help with proper mixing and of course a real master. I had a metallic piano and some scrapes. I’d recorded some dripping water from my kitchen and a steam sound and I have an immersion microphone in the mail coming to me; and I was going to do some things with that. The song is worthwhile, so sauce will be added later. I have a few songs like this so maybe they can make an entire recording. You never know…

The more I listened to it, the more I liked the presentation. I like the pauses. My recording itself is cleaner and my ears are improved, I think. I didn’t worry that it needed a bridge and rush to clutter the song with more and more changes. It feels songwriterly… again. My other recent material does not. It feels like part of shows, which is different.

I almost didn’t need to blog about it, but you come to a realization that it is your blog, at a certain point. So I have to stand for something and report my whereabouts even if I am vague and quiet about it. And to say that I do not support the wanton carelessness of one group of humans toward another–let alone the violence–that’s necessary. But if every effort I make to even feel towards a thing is lost in a sea of pleasant couch cushions, this is also an issue. It’s problematic if we are silenced by the huge reality of our own insultingly mundane unimportance in the scheme of things. We are raised to feel exceptional. We are not, and we are not necessary. And it’s dangerous … to feel -unUnique. For ANYBODY.

It’s a hypothetical that isn’t so hypothetical. It’s about a shade of gray that is actually quite black and white in this case. It might mean different things to different people, but this is what it means to me. In any case, it would be about personally showing up morally unprepared and trying to put a cartoon bandaid over a gaping hole and showing up to a funeral in your stupid party dress. So making excuses.

It’s hard to explain my emotions. The recording was like this. I was in half a new room setup. I was setting up a new machine and the last times Ive tried to do a round of one of these on a brand new machine I’ve taken collaborators down with me because the sound’s been off. At the end, I had to swap machines to get a vocal down because my newer machine didn’t want to talk to my legacy interface and was having assignment and routing problems. These things make me feel like a dork, particularly after getting quick at routing and problem solves–but at I’m a little better at slapping apology demo FX on things now. She says this after sending a mildly distorted track 🙂

After some self-flagellation on the forums which I did not need to do, I regretted saying anything because I think now this track has sort of grown on me. I like the chords I chose and the ebb and flow of intensity like it’s also a musical option to just opt out. I feel like I ought to give myself more credit for making good musical choices and having the intent there in the beginnings of things. It’s important I respect this songwriter thing in myself or I’m going to get into a bad habit of abandoning my work again at the first sign that someone thinks a negative thing about it. Maybe they are right about me, I will think, although I ought to know better by now that the opinions of others do not really matter and this is a head game. Making songs for other people will always leave your work sounding contrived and fake-ish (at least for me). Even if you have a commission or an assignment of some kind or a fan base to please–they have requested YOU, and so you must show up with your whole mind and body.

This is a highly edited entry, as I said before, and I probably should try a little harder with song bios next time. This is probably true of songs as well. All I know is that my sleep is off and I have comedy to write-write for a class I am taking; and also.must cook and bake and get back to normal. There’s bread, I hopped on that train. And who knows if I’ll be back in here to change more of the record. Or not. Maybe I’ll just make a list-ier one later about other random stuff (no one believes).

To close (finally! :D) I honestly don’t expect much or to get through to be top 25 of 41 people with my rushed little offering, no matter that it was earnestly performed. But you never know because sometimes the weirdest things of mine get liked the most. I made second place with an educational “bad rap” about a piranha track I did in less than 2 hours. I think people were surprised. No one will be surprised about exposed vocal and sparsely emotional piano. Either way, this could be me making personal history fizzling out of Nur Ein in a Round 0 or even just skating thru to an ultimate and unlikely stupid win (HA!)…so we’ll just have to see.

a blog about nothing.

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1. I was going to write a Facebook note, but decided against it. Remember notes? Notes were cool. I liked notes. I was going to write one and I figured if my Friends got to the bottom of the note, then they will have read the whole thing. I supposed if they got through it without complaining of boredom, then I’d keep writing them. Or maybe I wouldn’t. Who knows.
2. That’s a photo of me in my 20s playing the guitar. Yesterday, it was my birthday. I’m 43 now. Then just right there below is a photo of me now. Pretty freaky!
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3. I think perhaps I’m tired or something. I’ve really been dragging lately. I’ve decided to try these goofy new supplements. I’m not going to discuss them with the internet, but we’ll see how they go. I put a LOT of work into researching them and they go really well with all my medicine that I am not admitting to taking or saying that I don’t take either. In fact, this paragraph didn’t even happen. I don’t even exist. Just move on to the next thing.
4. I once described this as the Seinfeld of blogs. When I did this, my husband sent me this link which went into vast details about post-modern thought in comedy and how things had evolved. I was not amused and felt like I was being told that my sense of humor was an asshole and that people ten years younger or so than me were a kinder, more intellectual and evolved species of human. This irked me and made me think that I was being told I was some kind of artistic orangutan. I think that my reticence to make everything I write into some kind of a morality play because I don’t WANT to be that ethically superior person dates me. Or maybe it doesn’t.
5. I have a headache.
6. I’m not making excuses.
7. I need a newer computer. Or maybe I just THINK I do. Maybe I can wait. I haven’t decided yet. I think we just THINK we need new things. Maybe it’s a disease.
8. I don’t understand a lot of what has happened in 2016. But I accidentally wrote a book of pretty substantial essays. I don’t want to talk much more about it for fear that I will jinx it though.
9. Why do I want a smart watch? Why? I know I don’t need one. Next I’ll want a chip in my brain, or a flying car. Sigh …..
10. I had coffee too late in the day again. Also, I think my older notes were more intellectual. But I could be wrong about that.
11.There’s no rule saying that items must make sense or that I have to stop at ten.
12. I haven’t turned on chat in any of my apps in thousands of years. I don’t want people to get a hold of me. It seems like going voluntarily to the dentist.
13.You can’t stop at 13. It’s bad luck. I have a house ghost. There’s protocols to follow.
14. I’ve been sneezing a lot today. Maybe this is what my headache is. Or maybe it’s something more dastardly.
15. I still like capitalizing nouns sometimes, and there’s nothing anyone can do about my need to do this precious habit-Thing.

2dust

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see note below on photo. mixed media of kitchen items. (cup, knife, icing container, food coloring)

I wrote a Spintune which I may or may not release on the evening of Sunday the 24th while waiting to finish up the Hudson and Day shadow track for Round 2, of Spintunes 8 – which is supposed to be about hatred and also we may not finish it but we don’t have to because it’s a shadow entry. That means that we’re not competing because we got eliminated because:

I had to update:
*Mavericks
*Cubase 7
*Pianoteq
*my Play software
*my Apogee drivers
*my midi interface
a bunch of other things I can’t remember

….also, the learning curve on Cubase 7(.5) from Cubase 5 is substantial. The upgrade process wiped out simple things like my keycommands and those sorts of things. My entire workflow that I’ve worked a few years of these contests getting used to had to be rebuilt from the ground up. I had to keep telling myself “no. You are not getting paid. This is Spintunes. If you are late or turn in a horrible entry, no one will explode. You will move on from this. And Alyssa is a cool cucumber. She can handle herself. You’ve sucked before and she’s been groovy about it.”

Alyssa is good because she’s fierce.

But this round, I don’t know if we’ll do it. We didn’t have a good go recording Round 1 because of that massive recording drama and there were also dramatic other things in my brain when I wanted to write a blog and talk about some of this stuff. I wanted to interact with my community and talk about some of the stuff that had been happening to me, but instead I ended up suspending my Facebook account.

It was a harrowing week for many reasons.

I say all of this because our character from Round One was kind of smacked around the head by the kind of relationship that leaves you in what I think of as the wounded 90s Alterna-Musician waif-mascara in the shower running down your face in your negligee sort of State. You can’t really hear sound waves around you and everything feels like bubble wrap. In a way, our song succeeded, because there were moments of Almost-Beauty stuck in between these WTF times. It might have been better as a companion to my ‘Verge of Tears,’ but way more extreme – like ‘Patient No. 7‘ but far sadder. I do that all the time, string the stories into character group-lets. So Round 1 and Round 2 could join this in sort of a Horrible Accident Suite. Who knows? I have cross-pollinated character stories across all my ensembles and solo work – I should make a mind map or something to keep it all organized.

Anyway, I think maybe 2.5 – 3 of the judges might have grokked us the last round. No matter. I think I expressed how I felt about the whole round just fine. I got over being embarrassed that computers don’t Do My Bidding. I consider myself awesome that I try to mount large scale productions when I could just as easily grab my iDevice and do a quick mix of the both of us or download some much easier editing tools. I’m trying to learn some heavy hitting software and really delving into some crazy midi editing and making the pianos and I’m trying to rebuild my tape machine now and there’s really no limit to the number of things I’ve got going on in this room. Not that I’m comparing to anyone/anything/anyCylon else, it’s just that I’m maximizing the opportunity and not going for the easy, lazy way out just because I know what I could do to make people like me. I’ve learned enough about these contests by now. I’ve been in them since 2009, 2010? Just to give myself a little thrill I entered a Songfight and I decided to get help on the mastering because I liked the song. I suck at mastering right now, so I figured that I’d do what I needed to do to let the song have breathing room and not shoot itself in the foot.

This is not to say I haven’t thrown myself into contests and been disappointed and not seen why things played out a certain way. I could write blogs and blogs about what happened during the Nur Ein Cold Comfort round. I probably will write about that particular bout of user error one day …… This Spintune, I am happy to report, was not user error.

Think of it. If I waited until the Contests Were Over to do upgrades to my computer, when would this happen?IMG_3694

Why do you think that none of my files are in order and I don’t have an album or a website?!?

I’ll NEVER be ready!

But I think of this little Waiting Song at least as kind of an answer to the first song that we did even though that song CLEARLY wasn’t ready. I pushed it through anyway. I don’t like to not hit the deadlines (<-what kind of GRAMMAR is this????!?!), particularly when other people are involved. But I/we weren’t able to get it across the way I wanted to. Alyssa’s first instincts about the melody were correct, and it was just a really long week waiting for me. But my goals for this contest are to get a Round 2 with more movement and push in it, and to re-do the Round 1 the way we want. This can happen anytime before the earth is destroyed really, as well as recording any other entries from the previous contest we did and when she guest-spotted on my first NurEin (including other sucky go’s we’ve had at any other songs we’ve done). I wanted to at LEAST re-record Round 1 to My Satisfaction by Monday Night’s listening party – and also get round 2 done. I had some other little things I wanted to do too. I’d told several people about a couple little Stupid Gems. I always strut big and don’t deliver, but I don’t care. People cope. Now I don’t even know if I’ll send in the little shadow I guess I did solo to amuse myself. It was really more to express myself and what we were doing and my recording and my feelings about these contests and etc. anyhow now I’m rambling trying to make a living and doing the best IIIIIII caaaaaannnnnnnn…

I really need to go to sleep. I actually heard that in the grocery store the other day. I’ve edited this entry several times.

Anyway … I think we’re on track. And if we’re not, we’re not on track in an on track type of way.

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*the photo is from a G+ post I made with a poem in it. I was feeling all macabre and the song I just wrote today did reminds me of that. It’s food coloring. I thought … perhaps this is upsetting for people or a provocative or violent image. But I’m going to leave it up because it beautiful and it is my blog. I live my life in a disclaimer-y fashion and I have to stop for a moment.

Flargsday.

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Hello. It’s mid-January and I’m crying in a drugstore parking lot.

Some random person honked at me. In a rude way. Also my mascara is running. Smooth.

I’m not going to pretend to be okay right now. I’m going to go ahead and admit a little bit of New Year defeat and bootstrap it up because my new 2014 thing is Try Again Immediately. It’s going to be a year of Awesome Bold Tries and Massive Honesty and Glorious Spectacular Fail.

Today I found out my Important Medicine Doctor is retiring this summer. This puts a HUGE boot through my plans. I can trace the demise of my sanity back to my really bad reaction over the departure of another doctor of mine, but that’s a long story for another Mental Health Day.

Today I:
1. Am off my medicine routine.
2. Am back on the smack(s):
i.e.
-diet coke
-cigarettes
3. my sleep is screwed.
4. I drank Vodka last night. Yes. JUST vodka. Like I’m in my 20s. But I’m NOT.
5. I’m practicing, but not really.
6. I’m avoiding some stuff and things. and stuff.
7. My Cylon is winning the war and gives me nothing but sass.
8. I’ve been mean to my kitchen so my laundry is giving me the silent treatment.
9. My engineering lacks subtlety or finesse.
10. I’m elderly and boring and Un-Sexy.

Thanks for Flying Emo Airlines. Tomorrow is another Day.

a tough weekend.

I have been dutifully dealing with the cylon. The more I find, the more Resolute I feel, and the more I feel like taking Several Long showers to wash this Stupid Year away. July, August, and Septemmber in Particular were stupid. But I think that when you have a parent die (circa 2007), you tend to do anything you can to bury yourself in distractions for as many years as you can. Perhaps you convince yourself that you are taking care of yourself even if you are doing the opposite. Things do Not have to be as difficult as we make them, perhaps.

This was the entry I wrote in the second week of August. I was in a lot of pain, and needed more than I was getting out in the RatRace. I should have laid on the couch and remained very quiet and close to home. There was nothing for me out in the Big Scary World. I will take that lesson next time and use it to replenish myself and come back smiling and free. 🙂

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1. tomorrow is the four year anniversary of when my mother left us. i don’t even quite know how to put that, still. this has been a tough week for many reasons. it’s been tough to concentrate. i have had a rough time remaining professional. i have not gotten a lot of credit for it. but when i have, it has been resounding and supportive and really building up – and effective. and appreciated. if not necessecelery consistent.
2. I’m going to finish this blog and probably sign off most social media for a day, maybe more. I say this, but i am kind of addicted. I don’t know if this is a societal problem or a problem with me. I am definitely having some issues lingering around and am definitely in a place of transition. i do believe this is temporary. I’ve been trying to wrap some stuff up and get some things done. Some I have. Some got done the way I wanted, some didn’t. I think I know which direction I’m going to head in though so this is good. Do I think that some day I will stop speaking in generalities? NEVAR!!!!!
3. I do know that it HAS been a rough year. I think that this person I’m about to mention will understand what I am about to say more than I can explain, but I think I would like to say a special thank you to Jules Sherred for giving me some recognition this week. I have been working hard to be honest, and classy, and to act in a certain way that denotes being calm and unruffled. Seldom do I like to lose my cool online even if alarming things are happening in my personal life or right under the surface of me. Or if I am having difficult anniversaries. I have gotten a little worse at burying things in my lyrics and masking all my pain.
4. the attention and ground that I have gained in the last few months that has been positive and healthy has been of the sort that I can build on and it is the sort that I am going to need to start surrounding myself with and craving. I am really starting to change and grow. As addicted as I think I am to drama – I think that the calmer I keep my life and the tighter rein I keep on my drama, the better off things are. I am learning to do this. I am learning to do this and still remain me. I think it’s all about the people we allow into us. I think it’s important. And it is important to forgive ourselves for the mistakes that we make. We all have the ability to take many many showers and cry tears of snot over Deeply Upsetting Stupidities which derailed us for Long Whiles. And then get back on our horses with Changed Minds.
5. I look at situations I was embroiled in, say, before my mother died. I think – what the hell was I thinking? Why the hell would I want to go back there for? There are all these nostalgia things happening now. As much as I think it was a terribly charming time in the 1990s – I am ready to … well
……

just …not! okay? just … um ….
No. I don’t think I WILL….. come to think of it! 🙂

1. No more drama.
2. Today the computer gets cleaned.
3. Today I’m finishing the B section of the Rach.
4. I do get to eat that taco. That’s a given though.
5. I do need more coffee. And some air.
6. This house needs picking up
7. I am leaving town this weekend
8. I don’t have a lot of flowery or funny things to say.

HERE! Another blog RIGHT AWAY from the likes of ME! You are terribly excited. You have been waiting with shark-bait-breath. Yep. The excitement is SWELLING in you NOW!!!! BWAHAHAHAHAHA.

1. so. it continues to be a good weekend. i’m actually getting a lot of planning done. hard head work.
2. The Killers is a good band, actually, I think.
3. I am starting to get into music again. I have been listening to *my* music, and it is rejuvenating me. Lots.
4. The cylon and I will soon reach an understanding and come to a resting point in negotiations. Many files will be put in a hard drive, and that hard drive will be put off to the side.
5. I am SO excited because I’m going to leap up onto another plateau. I know that sounds really weird, because usually it’s a steady climb up a slope of a ladder. For me it is a series of plateaus. And when I get to the end of one of them I have grown really really tired of it.
6. This plateau has lasted about six or so more months than it should have, but I really need to forgive myself for this. When you don’t have all the information you need – plus you are sick – you have to cut yourself a little slack.
7. When I “level up,” to use a phrase that you kids have been teaching me 😉 … I think this time I am going to have to learn to play more. Not take things so seriously. Not have things so set in stone. Not have rules that hold so hard and fast. To be a little more flexible. To be a little more fearless. To *own* my risks a lot more so that when they totally backfire I can say “ha-ha” and not boo-hoo. Because before I protected myself from all risk. And now it is tempting to say “see, this is why I did that! I TOLD you so! All Cretans ARE liars!” 🙂
8. I make a lot of Grand Proclamations about what I am going to do, and then I end up eating a lot of Blueberry Waffles and procrastinating about my plans.

Well, tough tilapia, people! I am a creative soul who is easily bored. I will probably continue to play football at the hyperbowl – angry as all get out when the other team wins and takes the shiny pretty trophy away from me. Because it seems that I can never really WIN *Anything!*

9. Oh dear sweet Raddicchio. They’re playing ‘Patience’ by GNR on the loudspeaker at the hotel bar. I think I’d probably die if I had to perform the whistle-part to that in public. I’d never make it through. I can tell you that the rest of the clientele where we are probably do not feel all that turned on by my Axl Rose impersonation. Even though I think it is TERRIBLY thrilling. And Spot On. I am SOOOO serious about that. I have it DOWN.
10. Today, if you are reading this and you liked it, you should tell your 3 closest friends about it. They are currently TOTALLY being deprived of Me. 🙂
(yeah, I’m a nut. But if you were here I’d give you a hug. Or do my Axl-impersonation for you. Hey… where are you going? Would you like a jaunty business card??????? HEY!!!)

Technological Retreats

1. I tried to write a post before and ended up just uploading a photo of my aluminum foil robot:

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2. I wonder if this confused some of you!
3. Couch Kitty and the Cylon have taken their relationship “to the next level.” I’ve become concerned and have tried to intervene; but clearly this is a love which knows no boundaries. It matters not that Cylon is a Smackbook Pro and Couch Kitty is, well, a cat. True Love finds ways.
4. On that note, I am dragging the Cylon from its twitterpated stupor to do more organizing because I have a love affair with some overdue projects I have with some friends who’d just love to see me complete some work.
5. Am going to be recording all week! Yay!! Very exciting!
6. I had an ice cream coffee drink today and shouldn’t have.
7. One of the things making me perplexed and a tad cross is the self adjusting cylonic volume in hangouts in Google+. I think the Cylon is perhaps distracted by feline romance.

Who knows these things? 🙂

Lessons learned from January-thru-July 1.

It’s the sixth month of the year now. This is the month when plans get made. When projects happen. I am not going to have access to my computer for several days (explanation soon), so I am going to work a lot right now and then I am going to think, write, read, sleep, and practice many things. I have a lot of data to sift through. It has been one of the hardest years of my life; preceded by a year that was probably among the most life-changing, personality altering, and important. I am a different person and I think I will finish 2011 learning to understand this new Thing I have become. I watched videos of the Christmas 2009 Denise Hudson … and I don’t understand her. She is not me. I love her, I miss her. I need to mourn her and get over her… and learn what I can about her because I need her now, a little bit.

I need a list, because I have done so much and I forget that. I still have so much to do!

1. just got back from doing errands. a little bit stressed out. got a lot to do.
2. The Cylon has a problem with his screen so it will have to be replaced. This will take a week or so, possibly longer. So I have to back up and finish a lot of things before this occurs. Scramble.
3. This is kind of fortuitous. Actually. There are some things I have noticed (and “you,” of course is “me” here… but it could also of course be YOU, you, you, *you* … you, You, YoU, you-youditty-youyou, y’all, etc. Insert whatevermonkey secretcode Dramabahamamama in here. I like to shoot straight when I don’t think it will get my thrown in social prison (you don’t believe me, do …you):
-I have let some stuff slide. I have not really been taking good care of myself. This is not okay.
-I have been allowing things to happen to me that are Wrong and Bad. Your circumstances should ALWAYS make you feel special and important. If you are ever in a situation where you don’t; get out of it. If you’re doing it to someone – stop. There is NOTHING worse than feeling obliterated. There is nothing wrong with you. There is nothing wrong with me. We all deserve to be faced. If you cannot see the face of a situation, but only always its side, then show it your back.
-Eat good food and don’t abuse it.
-Don’t drink too much.
-Don’t expect too much of yourself, but expect more from you – and from others.
-Get enough sleep
-Make your environment wonderful to be in, a delightful garden of what you want. People, places, and things. To be in; to look forward to.
-Don’t go looking for trouble, trouble sees you fine (this, or something like it, is a fine and dandy song lyric I heard lately)
-accept the truth of things that cannot be changed and live as best you can.
-be flexible

Breathe.

Do things you enjoy.

4. I have songs to write, and arrange.
5. I have more personal things to say, but I am Den, and that is not my way.

I had a nice day. Nice days are welcome here.
I like nice. I enjoy being happy.