RPM Challenge 2016

January 27, 2016 6:06 PM

Anyone up for this year's RPM Challenge?

This Monday marks the start of the 2016 RPM challenge! The concept is straightforward, simply record an entire album in the month of February. The last time MeFi Music "officially" got behind the project was 2012, but a few members have quietly been participating over the years (shout out to pyramid termite!). The best part is that this year you have a whole extra day to work with!

Anybody taking part this year? I have always wanted to give it a go, so this year is my first official effort. Who else is in??
posted by grog (9 comments total)

I've been meaning to do this for a long time. So that's a long history of utter failure, but I'll try really hard to make it happen this time...
posted by equalpants at 10:28 PM on January 28, 2016

Ha, I was just coming here to post this.
I think I'm going to give it a shot again this year. Done it twice before and both times I said I wouldn't do it again once I'd finished. It's quite a grind to get it done. But then those memories fade and you remember how motivating it was and how it gave you a creative kick in the ass. Plus you get a bunch of new songs (of which 10-15% are actually not too bad!)
posted by chococat at 6:52 AM on January 29, 2016

very uncertain this year - i've been in the hospital this week and may just be leaving it be this year
posted by pyramid termite at 5:19 AM on January 30, 2016

I'm going to have a go at it, I hadn't heard of this before now but I need something to put me in front of my mic and learning how to get faster at writing and recording. This seems like it should have that effect.

But I am giving myself permission to fall short; it seems so ambitious! I'm totally gonna go for it, but if I end up with 'only' 5 songs or even 2, that's better than I've turned out the last few months.
posted by BlackPebble at 5:11 AM on February 1, 2016

I am giving myself permission to fall short

Oh, totally this. I also have given myself permission to simply do my best. My goal is not quality, or even quantity of music really, my goal is merely one month of recording music on a regularly scheduled basis. RPM just seems like a great way to provide the context I want/need to learn all the tools in my studio better, which hopefully lowers the barrier for future recording and means more music making in the long run.

I'm actually trying to work as little as possible on this project, capturing some currently underused "me time" in the 6am-7am hour of the day. I'll be honest, I'm not so sure how that will play out but I did wake up at 6am this morning to move some cables around in the studio, so...

Other than learning more about recording, and working on stress free productivity, my goal is to have an album title, some artwork and a set of cool track names. Then if I'm actually able to put any music behind the "record", that's a huge bonus! But it may just end up being 10 different covers of Cage's 4'33", which is okay too (I play a mean air guitar).
posted by grog at 12:42 PM on February 1, 2016

i just signed up, having completed something in plenty of time, thanks to my being off of work - (if i had been working, i would have had to decline due to the extra stress and poor health) - but the cd's burned and once it's past 9, i'll be making a trip out to ship it
posted by pyramid termite at 5:10 AM on February 19, 2016

Done! Submitted 25 minutes ago with 10 mins to spare!
It kicked my ass this year. Still writing a song last night at 3am (you know, the inevitable filler song.)
Sort of hit and miss. As usual I wish I had started off in Week 1 with the drive I eventually found in Week 4, but that's my process I guess. Wish I had way more time to make things sound good.
How'd everybody do?
posted by chococat at 9:18 AM on March 1, 2016

Wow, great work chococat! My efforts completely fell apart after about 10 days. I actually did more recording in Feb than I have in years, so that's great, but I don't really have a process for producing music yet, I guess I have a year to work on it now...
posted by grog at 1:37 PM on March 1, 2016

Just catching up on the tail of this thread now. Awesome work pyramid termite and chococat! I definitely felt like a success in my own measure, I got 4 songs written and 3 of them in various stages of recording, and am still working now. I definitely feel like the RPM challenge got me to make many good new habits, and my n00b recording skills are finally starting to flesh out. I still am achingly slooooooow in my process, but now at least I feel like I know what I'm doing and what options are worth exploring. And before this challenge, I hadn't turned on a mic since last fall. Definitely feeling good and looking forward to posting some tracks as they each get closer to 'done'.

And thank you, grog, for setting forth this challenge. I would absolutely not be in this positive state without your post!
posted by BlackPebble at 10:14 AM on March 11, 2016

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