60 Days

July 23, 2010 4:31 PM

My attempt at a "summer song" for this month's challenge.

Truly borne from summer. I thought of the chorus a few weeks ago while my son swam in the lake and I messed around on the guitar here in Muskoka, Ontario. Then back to Toronto where I had a few days about a week and a half ago to get the tracks down before we left for our vacation proper, so I just went nuts and recorded as much as I could; the vocals at the very last minute since I hadn't written them yet. We're back up north, been here for a week and a half and between headphones and the shitty cottage stereo this is the best mix I can muster but I thought I'd better get it in since I suggested the challenge topic. Pretty corny lyrics but they weren't the priority.
My whole thing was to try and sound "sunshiney."

posted by chococat (21 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

Peppy and summery indeed! Nice! I've been trying to come up with something that would sound like a summer song for Siberians, but so far, no luck.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:50 PM on July 23, 2010

Really enjoyed this. One q: how did you record the drums?
posted by unSane at 9:43 PM on July 23, 2010

One q: how did you record the drums?
Quite hastily and a bit sloppily this time. We live in a really old semi-detached house downtown and I have a pretty small window of time to record loud stuff like amps and drums when I think they're not home. They're very cool but it must be a drag having my crappy drum playing thumping through their wall. As soon as I think they might be home I get really self-conscious and stop.
This time I shoved an SM58 into the kick drum, an SM57 sort of halfway between the hi-hat and the ride, another 57 in the usual snare position and the Studio Projects C1 a few feet away for the room sound. Then some compression and EQ and some Vintage Warmer.
posted by chococat at 10:04 AM on July 24, 2010

lovely stuff. thanks!
posted by peterkins at 5:46 PM on July 24, 2010

Great pop gem! The way you layered the guitars and vox is really punchy and melodic.
posted by tunewell at 12:54 AM on July 25, 2010

Thanks again.
Um, I realize I never said the word neighbours upthread, when describing my consternation at recording drums. I'm overly-conscious of disturbing my neighbours.
It reads like a crazy person wrote it as I kept going on and on about "they" and "them." Sorry.
Really, I'm pretty sane.
posted by chococat at 10:08 PM on July 25, 2010

They're out to get you, chococat. We all know that.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 2:18 AM on July 26, 2010

I love that ambient drum sound. Mine are always sampled (although I try to play them live as much as possible... just got an Alesis DM5 to help with this). But it's never the same.
posted by unSane at 6:57 PM on July 26, 2010

ALSO we should have an Ontario music.metafilter meet-up I think...
posted by unSane at 6:57 PM on July 26, 2010

I'm all for that.
In fact, I've always fancied a music.metafilter-wide meetup.
Toronto. San Francisco. London. Tokyo. Boston. NYC. Buenos Aires. Glasgow...the list goes on and on...so many places I'd love to have music-specific meetups with so many awesome, talented mefi musicians.
posted by chococat at 7:29 PM on July 26, 2010 [1 favorite]

Yeah, that sounds like a complete blast. We should figure out a way to make it happen.
posted by unSane at 7:30 PM on July 26, 2010

And unSane, I hear you with the real drums thing. I went years and years recording songs with no drums/fake drums/sampled drums and I finally bought a crappy drum kit in the early 2000's from Paul's Boutique here in Kensington Market. This was pre-Craigslist and I paid I think $350 for this used 70's Japanese kit with no discernible brand name. I'd probably be able to get a way better kit today for the same cash.
It made a huge difference in the way I approached recording songs. I'm certainly NOT a drummer, but something about physically hammering out the beats myself, and having them not be all perfect, made things work a bit better for me, composition-wise. More organic and tangible or something like that.
posted by chococat at 7:42 PM on July 26, 2010

I can totally hear that. I would love to have an acoustic kit but with three boys milling around it would get insane very quickly unless I kept it out in the Quonset hut (which doesn't have power currently). We'll see what happens with the electronic kit -- perhaps (hopefully!) they will demand it.

I love the idea of a music.metafilter meetup, especially if we could hire a stage for the night. That would be f'ing awesome. And invite the rest of MeFi along, of course.
posted by unSane at 7:49 PM on July 26, 2010 [1 favorite]

Dammit, I missed this somehow! Yea, it's very sunshiney and kinda wistful too...like when I was 7 or 8 laying on the hot sidewalk watching the clouds roll by.
posted by snsranch at 8:16 PM on July 26, 2010

Wooo, this is a load of fun. The little breakdown is great. I find that the lead vocal is getting buried a little (on my little headphones, anyway), but actually I like it like that. It becomes part of a texture.

And re: drums, I haven't been able to record live drums in the longest time. I've got a process down with regards to sampled drums--and generally I'm pretty satisfied with the sound--but there is definitely something entirely different about a live kit. Even playing an electronic kit isn't quite the same, or not the same enough. Having a place for a drum kit is pretty much the only thing pushing me toward home ownership at the moment.

And I would love to play with any and all MefiMusicians. Although there don't seem to be many regular posters from NY, unless I just haven't been paying attention.
posted by uncleozzy at 7:41 AM on July 27, 2010

Great song! I dig the b-vox in particular, but the whole thing sound swell.

Is there a synth or someting at the very end there? And what's the percussion at the end of the chorus -- the pong-y tom sound?

I wish I could fit a trap kit in my house -- I haven't played in years now.
posted by Karlos the Jackal at 4:42 AM on July 28, 2010

Is there a synth or someting at the very end there? And what's the percussion at the end of the chorus -- the pong-y tom sound?

There's a Moog there in the last chorus and end bit, yes. The tom sound is the hi tom from the kit, but I didn't mic it specifically so you only hear it in the room mic, which is panned left a bit. There's also a sped-up piano track from the old upright Heinzman here at my parents' but I kind of buried it in the mix.

uncleozzy, I almost asked if you'd mix this for me. Something about it was crying out for one of your loud, warm fuzzy mixes. Alas, I didn't have my act together and we had to leave town.
posted by chococat at 11:31 AM on July 28, 2010

Oh man, you might not even recognize this song if I mixed it. Ironically, this is one situation where I'd mostly go smaller, to make the choruses really pop. There'd have been so much swirly delay it'd make you dizzy.
posted by uncleozzy at 12:24 PM on July 28, 2010

I just listened to it again. Love your voice, Chococat, and the sweet harmonies. Pure pop.
posted by unSane at 12:32 PM on July 28, 2010

I love it, but my earphones kinda died and I only have the left one. I'll comment when I've heard it properly.
posted by micayetoca at 9:55 AM on July 31, 2010

1 September after an epic summer of vacations: feelin' it.
posted by Ogre Lawless at 9:39 AM on September 1, 2016

« Older Happy Bunny   |   Summer's Calling Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments