13 September 2011

Raw With Love ::OR:: Why Are We Doing This, Again?

There's a new release on our bandcamp page. After much deliberation, I decided to put out a project of my own. I'm not really the sort of musician who aspires to write songs & sing my songs in front of people. I normally harshly criticize the ever-increasing number of crappy guitar players who seem to feel that they should write songs because they play; and moreover, that people SHOULD listen to their crappy songs. I wonder what most songwriters (good, bad, or mediocre) are trying to accomplish with their actions. I wonder if they imagine there will be an audience for their (good, bad, or mediocre) communication of music, lyrics, & emotion. I wonder if they imagine a thoughtful mix of intelligent, discriminating adults (able to appreciate the nuances of each songwriters' personal style), who attend open mics & songwriter showcases & acoustic nights & fundraisers & neighborhood bars, and who would INSTANTLY RECOGNIZE the unique talent in front of them & SUPPORT IT.

I am not one of those people. I have learned that being a musician means difficulty in finding venues to show off what you do, and rarely finding people enthusiastic enough to support. I have learned that, in order to be TRULY good at what you do & have something to offer an audience, it takes an INTENSE amount of work; much more work than your casual, OTSFM-type guitar strummer is interested in. I've learned that for every fan of songs & lyrics there are no less than fourteen shitty songwriters. (Do the math, it ain't pretty.) My new question for everyone in the music industry is this: Why are YOU doing this? What are you trying to accomplish? What do you expect in return? How will you measure your success?

So I don't write songs for people to LISTEN to necessarily. I guess I've always approached songwriting as much as a recording exercise as writing. I developed my own abilities (composing, instrumental & recording) through the years by working out my own material all the way through to the end of the recording process. These songs were not written with the intention of being grouped together; they're pretty frighteningly honest as well, considering many were never intended to be released. They were all just song kernels that got worked on & worked on & left alone for years & rediscovered & worked on & disliked & finally called done to validate all the time & energy spent on them.

So why, you may ask, would I finally release a bunch of material that was never conceived of that way? Pragmatically, the answer is that there aren't enough people visiting our bandcamp, facebook, or now Soundcloud pages for me to fear what people will think when these songs get out there. There is no "there" out there. Our total obscurity makes this 'public' forum a safe zone, for the time being. The only people who follow this blog or visit our page are essentially friends of mine. That's a perfect environment for me to throw out an album like Raw With Love, which might be appreciated by some of the folks that I know. Perhaps those folks will listen in the bathtub (as was the purpose of this collection), and have an Art moment in that specialized location. Then, having experienced that moment, they may recommend the album to people close to them who might be interested in a similar experience. The good news is that you can set your own price for the download on bandcamp, all the way down to FREE. So download a copy, draw a bath, press play, and feel free to send us some comments. Via the interwebs.