The Oracle of Apollo Snippets from the life of Apollo Lee

Dec 31, 2008 - 20:12

Life, Music, Personal, Technology

Finishing 53 Tracks

At the beginning of the year, I decided that I wanted to write 52 tracks in 2008 and post them all on a new blog I started in March. There were some weeks that I had no output at all, but for most of the year, I carried my Korg padKontrol in my backpack, so I could write tracks on the train. I commute an hour each way in the morning to San Francisco for work and the idle time on the train affords me the occasional opportunity to work on my music.

I noticed toward the end of my marathon of ambient tracks that, if I made it to track 52, there would be 49 tracks in Ambient Improvisations. Well, I might as well throw down the extra one and make that “album” an even 50. So, today, on New Year’s Eve, I churned out three tracks over the course of the day, all three of which I built using my M-Audio KeyStation Pro. That brought my total to 53 for 2008. What do I win?

If you had asked me in January if I’d consider writing over six hours of music at 40 beats per minute, I’d have laughed. I write house music, after all. It’s easy to get locked into a single-minded idea of genre. It’s even easier to doodle around, produce nothing, tweak rough drafts over and over, and obsess over perfection. The exercise of improvising music for seven minutes, mixing it down, and letting it go is cathartic.

I think for 2009, I’m going to make it a point to use my 26 Stubs to craft songs. Buying DJ gear and reviving Digeum with Jay allows me the opportunity to see if whatever those “stubs” become mixes into other music I love. I’m really excited about music again and, if the 50 sleepy ambient tracks did nothing else, I think 2008 won me that excitement.

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