Song-o-Matic

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Remember a long time ago when I would ask people to give me song ideas, and then I’d record 60 second songs, and post them on message boards? Probably not. I did it from time to time in 2004-2006 probably. Back then I wasn’t doing it for any reason than just for fun. Revisiting it so many years later, a few days ago, I want to do it some more.

If you’d like to join in on the fun, there’s a thread on the Rock Band forums here. As of typing this, only one person has given me an idea for a song. The topic was dealing with the fact that at launch, Rock Band 4 will not support online multiplayer. The funny thing is that I didn’t even know that, and as a big Rock Band fan, that news blew my mind. So instead of going the ultra lo-fi route I did back in the day, I spent a little more time with the production of the song. The end result is “The Pain That Never Ends.” Thank you calloy for your interest. It clocks in at just under 60 seconds, but in some ways, it’s better than my 5+ minute long opuses. The guitar and vocal recordings are rather acceptable given how impromptu they were. Reception has been pretty good. One forum member said it reminded them of Ministry. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I love Ministry, so I take that as a compliment, but I don’t see the comparison. Something funny about that though is that one of the first bits of feedback I ever got about any of my music was that I sounded like “low budget Ministry,” so I’m getting better! I’ve evolved from low budget Ministry to just Ministry. Ha. Yeah…

Man, I can’t remember how this went exactly, because it’s been a whole week. I can’t remember if I found my old Song-o-Matic songs before I theorized recording them again or not. Hm. Either way, when I started listening through those old mp3s, I definitely had a hankering to make more. I can’t quite recall this either exactly, but it’s been like 10 years at this point, but I’m pretty sure I was using Microsoft Sound Recorder to record these songs. They were completely live, mostly improvised, and the 60 second limit for these songs was only there because that’s how long Sound Recorder let you record. Although there was that trick where you could set the playrate to 50% and then reset it, which would give you more than that 60 seconds. Then I would convert them to mp3s using some other program. Then…I would upload them (probably on dialup at the time) and post the link in these Song-o-Matic threads. It was awesome.

Anyway, I’m not sure how many, if any, of these mp3s I’ll share. For now though, here are just some of the filenames of some of them, to give you an idea of the craziness that people would suggest for me to make tiny tunes from. Remember, I recorded almost anything that anyone told me to. I wouldn’t have came up with these on my own, probably.

  • abortednazi.mp3
  • babyseals.mp3
  • fcc.mp3
  • gasosa.mp3
  • invisiblefetus.mp3
  • puffy.mp3

There was also a time when I would ask people for cover song ideas. So I did stuff like Green Day’s “American Idiot,” Britney Spears’ “…Baby One More Time,” and Twisted Sister’s “We’re Not Gonna Take It.” Those were fun.

So my set up was pretty primitive. But…I don’t remember exactly what it was. I think I just had a guitar effects processor (with built-in drum patterns) and a microphone connected to a powered mixer running into the line-in jack of my ancient PC. Now, I’m all cool and do everything more professionally. It’s not all live; I’m handling these mini-songs much like I would for an album. On one hand, I feel like that gives me good practice for producing music, which is good. But it’s kind of bad because I’m spending way more time on the songs. I’m making a few different drum patterns, then recording guitar, then recording vocals, and then mixing it and rendering it out.

I don’t know. That’s what’s going on in the world of Robby Suavé right now, other than the semi-slow process of fixing Boobs, Butts, and Feets in order for it to be mastered. Speaking of which, I’ve chanced upon the opportunity of having one of my favorite musicians remix one of my songs for a price. I was thinking it might be cool to have the remixed version of the song appear as a bonus track. I’m still trying to decide if I’m going to do it, but I probably will. So yeah.

If you’d like to have me record a short song for you, post your idea below on on the rockband.com thread or on Twitter or wherever.

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