Outtake from my latest project ..

mr_crowleymr_crowley Posts: 6,582
edited June 2011 in Songwriting
So, I applied for this school.
Basically you get an education in the art of writing songs. It's not like a 6 week course or whatever. This is a real education that is two years (with a third optional in Australia where you can get a Bachelore Degree in Songwriting).
Most (if not all) that attend to the school ends up signed as songwriters at different music publishers or as producers at prestigious studios. There is a long list of people that made it pretty far.
Most notably maybe is that Peo Lidell, A&R at Universal Europe, thinks it is the best hotbed for songwriters in the world and the education itself qualifies as one of the best vocational trainings in Sweden according to school department.

You had to get a five track demo together and send to them. So I worked on and off on this demo since February (even with pre-production and stuff to get some thoughts on it and develop the songs further).

I didn't make it in though. So I will give it a shot next year with hopefully some better songs. More preperation and a better production.
Main problem number is that I didn't have the time to get someone to sing on my songs and my shot was so bad so I just skipped that. Second I recorded everything in Audacity with my guitar and a keyboard with built in drum machine. Not ideal for contemporary pop music to break the charts.

I will work on a factory this summer and make some money which I will spend on some sort of home studio. But that is another and later topic ..

But I am pretty satisfied with some of the stuff anyway so I thought I share some of it with you if anyone is interested in sharing their thoughts on it. Usually it's very helpful. And this is some of the best stuff I've ever did so even if I didn't made it this time I am damn proud of my work :up:

First off is Sunrise In Paradise. THIS IS the best stuff I've ever recorded, period.
Everything from the keyboard (that originated from a guitar riff) to the melody. I can't do much better :036:
http://www.divshare.com/download/14999235-dd9



Backdoor Lover. The one song I just can't let go off. I've posted older versions of it here. This one is the best yet, at some points there are 6 layers of guitars. I tried to nail kinda Def Leppard vibe on this one. Sadly I discovered when I put on the drums that it isn't very tight. Actually it's not tight at all. But I didn't have the time to re-record everything and it sounds so good - I mean just the "tone" of the recording is cool.
http://www.divshare.com/download/15000437-30b

Last but not least - Jaded Jane. Pretty stripped down at first. But it kinda expanded and I got totally out of control on this one. But there are some nice stuff in there I think.
http://www.divshare.com/download/14999190-fe9




I know it's not Dino at all. At least not most of it but some thoughts and critique would be appreciated :smile:


EDIT: I discovered you had to download the WAV files so I posted MP3:s instead :up:
Post edited by mr_crowley on

Comments

  • MAdXMAdX Posts: 1,985
    In all honesty, the last song is definitely the best one in my opinion. It has the most potential. I think it has a similar vibe to some of the calm songs Maiden's been putting on their recent records. You should develop this further.

    I think the piano backing in the first one is just way to bland and doesn't catch me at all. Sure you had some nice melodies going in some parts but you have to make the backing track more interesting.

    You have some good stuff going on the second track even though I think it gets a bit too linear and predictable after a while, try throwing in a bridge somewhere to break the mold.

    On what instrument do you write your songs? If you really want to get serious about this school you should work on your songwriting a lot and study a lot of different artists every day. And get rid of that attitude "I can't do much better". You did your best but you can ALWAYS improve!  :up:
  • shaggyshaggy Posts: 853
    I agree with MadX Jaded Jane is definitely the best of the 3 & think it would've been the one that would have made the best impression with the judges at the songwriting school as its more of a complete song, is a better quality of recording & is less sloppy. It also has a greater likely hood of working with lyrics on top of it.
  • mr_crowleymr_crowley Posts: 6,582
    Thanks!

    Seems like I should work with the approach I did on Jane where I added a LOT of stuff to sort of "fill up the space". It's absolutely the most ambitious one in that aspect.
    I think it was my girlfriend's fav too so ...


    [quote author=MAdX link=topic=12225.msg185256#msg185256 date=1307100482]
    On what instrument do you write your songs? If you really want to get serious about this school you should work on your songwriting a lot and study a lot of different artists every day. And get rid of that attitude "I can't do much better". You did your best but you can ALWAYS improve!  :up:
    [/quote]

    I write mostly on the guitar but sometimes on keyboard to. Or on my desktop or knees or whatever when I'm on the bus or at some lesson or something trying to come up with cool rhtyms and shit but haven't really made a song out of it yet. But mostly guitar.
    I try to listen to a wide pallette of stuff. I mean right now my top three bands are probably Skid Row, Megadeth and Ozzy Osbourne but I try to listen to some different and unique stuff everyday. Like those dudes in Riff Knives. I draw a lot of inspiration from Lady Gaga. This song of her new album: http://open.spotify.com/track/7B0zSMcY1H98W9uRCPrc33
    Electric Chapel - start of with a guitar riff as menacing as anything Judas Priest ever written. Made a big impression on me.

    What I mean with a can't do much better is rather is the best I can do atm. Of course there is room for improvement regardless at how great your skills are.

    But I am already planning and thinking about how much bigger possibilites there will be a with more "real" recording gear. I mean what I have now is a barely working recording set-up. Editing is tough and I need to be able to nail everything myself. No samples or stuff at all.
    But well...

    Thanks one more time :up: Keep it coming :smile:



  • Actually if you put less guitars on your tracks they will sound bigger. Too many layered guitars with distortion will actually make the overall guitar sound shrink and all definition will go away. Do you lay your rhythm tracks to the drum loop or add the drums after? It sounds like you put them on after and it gives your stuff a very disjointed sound. Keep recording because you will keep getting better at it the more you do it and it will help your playing too since you get a chance to hear "You the guitar player" as a listener and not as the player.....when you are caught up in the playing it is hard to really listen to what you are playing objectively since you are too busy playing. I don't know what kind of gear you are using to record with but I think that if you can get the rhythm tracks to lock in better you demos will sound much more like a band playing instead of one guy doing all the individual parts. Keep at it, shit when I was 19 I could hardly tune my guitar much less record it!!! I have been recording stuff now for longer than you have been alive(old fart alert!) and I am finally almost getting the tuning my guitar part down! :crazy:
  • merlo_zeppelinmerlo_zeppelin Posts: 1,402
    dude cool stuff!!!!
    Backdoor lover rocks!!! needs some more work thoug, a brige, a breakdown, a half time section, something I'm a huge sucker for 80s glam metal though
    I think you have a very important skill and that is that you come up with intresting and catchy riffs, figures, melodies, motifs or whatever, you write good hooks, and that's the basis for succesful songs
    So you are good at geting the basic idea down, but I think you need yo work on "song-building", arranging, structures and specially making the recordings tighter, in time and  tune (especially tune), you know, polishing, making the "producers" job, but I think you have gret ideas.
    Anyway I'm just as green as you and you heard how my stuff sucks so you probably shouldn't pay attention to me  :tongue:
  • mr_crowleymr_crowley Posts: 6,582
    [quote author=Flying V link=topic=12225.msg185268#msg185268 date=1307110415]
    Actually if you put less guitars on your tracks they will sound bigger. Too many layered guitars with distortion will actually make the overall guitar sound shrink and all definition will go away. Do you lay your rhythm tracks to the drum loop or add the drums after? It sounds like you put them on after and it gives your stuff a very disjointed sound. Keep recording because you will keep getting better at it the more you do it and it will help your playing too since you get a chance to hear "You the guitar player" as a listener and not as the player.....when you are caught up in the playing it is hard to really listen to what you are playing objectively since you are too busy playing.
    [/quote]

    Great!
    This is good stuff - I should definitely try less guitars. But from my experience (extremely limited though) with some seperation through placement in the speakers I tend to favor heavily layered guitars. Or the sound of it anyway.
    Yeah I should start putting the drums down first. Could probably make the whole thing seem "tighter".
    And I really feel that I am improving in how to record. This project is the first serious thing I've recorded and I learned a shitload of stuff. And also, as you say, more easily can detect flaws in my playing.


    [quote author=merlo_zeppelin link=topic=12225.msg185291#msg185291 date=1307124098]
    dude cool stuff!!!!
    Backdoor lover rocks!!! needs some more work thoug, a brige, a breakdown, a half time section, something I'm a huge sucker for 80s glam metal though
    I think you have a very important skill and that is that you come up with intresting and catchy riffs, figures, melodies, motifs or whatever, you write good hooks, and that's the basis for succesful songs
    So you are good at geting the basic idea down, but I think you need yo work on "song-building", arranging, structures and specially making the recordings tighter, in time and  tune (especially tune), you know, polishing, making the "producers" job, but I think you have gret ideas.
    Anyway I'm just as green as you and you heard how my stuff sucks so you probably shouldn't pay attention to me  :tongue:
    [/quote]

    Thanks dude! :up: :smile:
    Yeah, I can get some basic stuff down as you say but need someone to kinda edit my ideas. This stuff is pretty much "edited" by my parents. I played it to them and they came with ideas and input and I also listend to it a lot and rewrote some stuff. But it tends to get kinda formulatic.
    This is why I so badly want a singer - someone to write with that can kind of edit my ideas together to something coherent 'cause I think myself that I am kinda good at coming up with bare structure for songs.

    Also I am really working on my role as a producer. I graduate in a week and when you do that in Sweden there is a BIG deal. So you kinda say "Goodbye!" by "running out" (don't know what to call it really but that's the name of it here at least) and you should play a song but it is only for 1-2 minutes so you have to remix/edit the stuff.
    I've done this for both my girlfriends class and my own so ... I think I'm at least onto something :tongue:
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