Last fall/winter, my friends Matt, Evan, Eric, Justin, Kevin and I collaborated on a bluegrass version of “Get Low” by Lil’ Jon for our recording tech class. This is the original blog post I wrote about it. We presented it for our class and everyone got a good laugh out of it. We posted it on Youtube and kind of forgot about it.
Fast forward to now – we just discovered that the youtube track has 12,000 hits, and that by some strange manner of internetting, it’s actually been posted and reviewed on a handful of music blogs. Googling “Emmett and the Black Mountain Scorpion Bluegrass Experience Gang” now yields about 2.5 pages of repostings of our cover. Check it out.
I hope I get more Dragon Ball Z for christmas! I’ve also learned the perils of being too upfront about my love of dinosaurs when I meet new people, which is a bit of a problem…but not really that big of a deal. I mean my computer background is a picture of two dinosaurs making out,
I have a poster of dinosaurs on my wall,
and a dinosaur comic in my wallet. What’s the big deal, right? Also I have a blog called “Three Stegosaurus Moon”…what does that even mean?
I just finished my paper on Zappa’s Joe’s Garage. I think it went really well. At the very least, I got to listen to album two full times while writing it. I feel like listening as I write a paper like this is actually really helpful, albeit sometimes distracting. It gives me a better perspective on what it is that I’m actually writing about. Beside that, I just love the crap out the album, and I pretty frequently jumped up to play the songs along with the record. I still remember a decent amount of the easier ones from when I did Joe’s Garage with the School of Rock (who have an incredible new website, what the heck?). That was a fun show, though. We did the whole album start to finish, with costumes and the Central Scrutinizer with a megaphone and the whole thing. I ended up playing about half of the songs on the album, but I learned all of them for fun (and just in case the opportunity arose to vampire a song from some other keyboardist). What a great album. Seriously, people, go to Grooveshark and type in “Joe’s Garage Frank Zappa” and then listen to the album. You will certainly not regret it.
And now I’m listening to Yoshimi Battles the Hip-Hop Robots and writing a blog post, having just finished that paper. I have a test tonight, which I’m only a little bit worried about, mainly due to the fact that I went to bed at 11:30 last night and was still awake at 1. I’ve been having trouble sleeping these last few days, I’m not sure what that’s all about. Hopefully that will chill out after finals (only three more to go, two after this evening). I go home on Thursday evening, after presenting the multitrack of our bluegrass “Get Low” cover, which has been finished but unpresented for a while. I’m bringing my skateboard and SNES home, which together will have to be enough to hold me over until the spring semester.
So I’m hanging out on the 8th floor of Steinhardt today, as I did yesterday, because it hurts to go outside. Every day I expect it to be less cold than it was the previous one, and I’m always wrong. I pay for it when I decide “Oh, I don’t need a scarf today,” or to wear a light jacket instead of my coat. My walk to class this morning was quite difficult. But I’m indoors now, and I don’t really even want to go as far as the library. I’m underdressed.
The big news yesterday was the final session on my recording technology final project, the bluegrass parody of “Get Low” by Lil Jon. We’ve been working on the tracking and mixing for several weeks, and that hard work finally culminated last night in a 4-hour mix session that spawned the final product. We learned the importance of avoiding ear fatigue, as after listening to the same track about twenty times, we realized that our mixing was going nowhere and would continue to do so without a break. So we locked up the studio and went to a coffee shop, then came back and rocked out. And we made this thingy:
As far as we’re concerned, that’s the project. We used compression on a few things, gates on a few others, and a bit of reverb on vocals and fiddle. The whole thing was recorded on a 2″ Otari machine at NYU’s studios, using not much more than an RE20, 414s, and KM184s. I’m pretty proud of the final mix. I sort of made the project into my baby even though it was a group thing – I grabbed a lot of the control of the tracking and mixing. I’m really happy with the way this turned out.
Do I seem busy and preoccupied lately? That would be because I am. I’m trying to keep it rad on this site while simultaneously keeping the rest of my life rad as well. But rest assured that when I do stuff, you’ll hear about it. For the most part.
Yesterday evening at work as a tech was frantic. At about an hour into my shift, about five people asked me do help them out with various tech things within five minutes of each other and I was forced to run around trying to please everyone. More than one of the requests had to do with the impending final project due date for electronics lab. That’s the class for which I’m making the MIDI controller, and though I feel like I don’t exactly know what I’m doing, I’m still able to give help to some people due to my coding experience which, short as it is, constitutes a larger body of work than most of my Music Tech peers. So I helped out a couple of my friends on shift last night and got a cupcake out of the deal (red velvet from Crumbs!). That’s the second time something like this has happened. My friend Amy, who I also met through teching, gave me a Hershey’s bar after I stayed after hours to help her in the studio. So the job can have its perks, mainly in the form of food gifts from nice girls. I say girls because I don’t feel like I know of any guy who would do that for someone (I mean other than me of course).
The final bit of secret santa news has arrived, and honestly it’s my favorite of all. My giftee got the present I had shipped to him (a custom name placard for his desk with an Arrested Development joke on it) and registered his reception on the redditgifts website! It’s amazing to actually see the gift that I had ordered for him, and also to know that he’s happy with it. It’s really an awesome feeling.
Of course, we’re getting close to the completion of the final mix of our bluegrass “Get Low” cover. We plan to finish the mix tonight, so you can expect the final mix online some time tomorrow. If you didn’t hear it, here’s the rough mix on my soundcloud. We think it’s a pretty funny song in the bluegrass style.