BBQ season is coming up fast. In an effort to get my grill ready for a shindig next weekend, I took the time yesterday to go thru and clean mine. Gotta love when a part of an item doesn’t get used much and it still stops working. I’m referring to the electric ignition of the grill. Took a little while to disassemble the thing and get the part out. Good thing for the internet, I was able to find the part from the manufacturer and order it. Should be here in time for the party! So long as I reassemble the thing.
Who knew that a big grill was such a process to take apart? Kinda makes me feel like they make these big facades of a grill. Once you get it apart you realize how much space they waste. 🙂
In a way it’s a bit like taking a hit song apart. One of the things that happens at high tech songwriting seminars lately is to have the producer come in with the session they used to record a song with. They show you the tracks they recorded, the instruments they used, the effects they put on those instruments and how they ended up doing the mix. For a songwriter looking to expand their abilities it’s an enlightening thing to see.
Much like the grill, a song can actually have a whole lot of little parts woven into the soundscape. Layers and layers of sounds which end up creating this big expanse of a song from something as simple as a few chords and a melody.
I’ve been fortunate enough to get the raw tracks to some huge hits. It’s an eye opening, or rather an ear opening experience to mess with the tracks. Sometimes hearing the raw tracks can be very surprising. Meaning that the original sound is terrible, but once it’s mixed into the track it’s the perfect piece of the puzzle. That’s the bizarre thing to music. On top of that, I was more interested in the levels at which they were recorded. Very very low in volume. Which is what a lot of the top engineers do – record at low levels. I learned that it makes it waaaaaaaaay easier to mix. So I do it now too. Contrary to the whole, get as hot a signal as possible that is so prevalent today.
That’s how we can learn to build something better. Strip something down and learn how it was built.
One artist that I would love to disassemble is Peter Gabriel. The man gets some amazing sounds. I’ve seen some footage of his studio and heard stories of his assistants, but that’s not the same as being there or even getting a chance to disassemble a song. I like his simple complexity. How’s that for an oxymoron? I admire the way he titles albums with two letters. It’s crazy.
The subject matter of this song you’re hearing right now is a tad heavy, but the music is insanely amazing. So many little layers. Such amazing sound quality on the end result. Which is why I would love to hear the individual tracks, I’m curious to know if they retain their greatness or are like some songs I’ve heard.
Another thing I love in this song is the transition in the middle where it switches gears, spruces up on the tempo and vibe and follows a feel of someone moving on with their life. It very much represents how people move thru their emotions. That’s brilliant songwriting right there. Something that I can certainly attempt to strive for.
If you don’t own this, I really think you need to add it to your library (legally of course).