Sunday, May 10, 2020

A Dreamy, Breezy Post about Sunshine & Rainbows & Shit

Or, What I Do in My Basement is Wholesome so Fuck You

[Sorry, I don't Mean to Sound So Defensive, I Just have to Keep My Online Persona Consistent As to Not Draw Any Attention to the Fact that I Might be a Dynamic Human Being Capable of More than One Trance-like Emotional State]

There's not many better feelings than driving through the countryside on a sunny day, the brightness carefully suppressed from damaging my eyeballs by my Bob Dylan shades, stretches of trees and farmland flashing past on either side, the windows down, a cool almost moist breeze wrapping it's invisible scarves around me and through the cabin of my car, the sun-bleached asphalt unwinding ahead, with music blasting, me singing out at the top of my lungs--

That's one thing I need to do more, but I have nowhere really to go right now. Of course, I would also have to wait for a nice day. That might be a while, at the rate things are going. I mean, I could drive somewhere just to drive--just to leave the house. Get some fresh air.

There is something to be said about driving around on a gloomy day, too: the window cracked, the fresh drops filling my nostrils with their perfume, listening to the Allman Brothers Idlewild South, the slow slosh of the windshield wipers--back in my twenties I would have had a cigarette, the menthol and tobacco wafting with the rain scent creating a sort of intoxicating potpourri.

This weekend has been more like winter than early May, though, and the only thing fun about driving around in winter is driving at night when the snow is blowing, an X-Wing Pilot flying through hyperspace. "This is Red Leader..." As fun as that is, I am not in the mood.

That's Ohio for you, I suppose. Instead of going on a drive, I have barely left the basement. I have spent a long, seemingly endless amount of time down here, re-arranging my shit--getting my organ bench from the garage, sitting my trunk on it and using the combined structure as a table for my synth and my drum machine, and moving my guitars and drum set around to make it all work. This might actually be my favorite basement setup yet.

This space really works really well as a one-man recording operation (and maybe eventually for live-streaming) but it would only be conducive for a full band if it was like a three piece or four piece, max. Four piece might be stretching it, actually. It would definitely be loud and sweaty... Gross. No, I like the idea of doing a one-man band thing, and I like the idea of being a member of a band, but I wouldn't want that band to actually practice here after we gain more members than my brother and me.

We'll see. We really just even need to actually practice more than once or twice to really be considered a thing. I mean, what else have we got going on?

One thing as a musician that I strive to do, really as an artist, in general--because actually this is also kind of the essence of writing fiction--is take my audience to a specific time and place, and fusing these two disparate media together can help make it even more real, more present... And it has been a dream of mine to do for a long time.

I did kind of a proto-version of it with my novel, Escapes, creating a playlist on Spotify that covers music mentioned in or relating to the story. I am listening to that now, actually. It has a weird mixture of jazz, rock, punk, alternative, metal, and pop, as the story covers a lot of territory musically.

With my upcoming short story collection, Asshole Years, I would like to take that idea of combining music and reading to the next level. After I finish editing and proofreading it, the collection will go into production and I can set a firm release date. While that's taking place, I will start working on an accompanying soundtrack--think Pink Floyd but with a noise punk-alternative-new wave edge.

That's really why I got an analog synth. To add to the space rock-psychedelic ambient flavor of my sound. When I used to perform regularly, I would often get compared to Syd Barrett or Pink Floyd. I don't know if that's actually true, but that's what audience members (and totally different people) have told me after performances, on more than one occasion. Anyways, I plan to start composing the new, mostly instrumental songs for the collection soon, and I will include a download code or something with the book, and really lean into that.

And actually, to tie it all together with a neat little bow, driving around seemingly aimlessly is one theme that does carry through the collection, somewhat. I guess it's good that I'm in that frame of mind. Maybe I need to go on a road trip for the inspiration.

If the goddamn weather ever cooperates long enough.

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