Friday, March 30, 2012

Livin' La Vida Loca.

Hi there, oh surfer of the internet!

For all of you who've been wondering how I'm doing, I've been just dandy. A little more sleep would be nice, but, I'm none the worse for wear.

So, for those who have been wondering how it was and what I was up to over spring break (even though it's a week late), here it is.

I went four-wheeling with two of my best friends in Nebraska National Forest. It was fantastic. The forest was beautiful, as were the wonderful young women I got to go with. We had a campfire (which is the best way to cook food), went hot-tubbing, had a picnic near the river, parked a trailer poorly numerous times,  got wind-burned, used some sketchy port-a-potties, ate way too much junk food, and enjoyed our time together with very poor cell phone reception. There are pictures on Facebook.

That's pretty much it.

My life has been pretty cool lately though, I wrote my first small orchestral score and sequenced it all by myself earlier this week for filmscoring, and my professor liked it enough that he didn't make me do any revisions, which is really rare for that class.

I'm also writing a huge orchestral filmscore for one of the student films at the film school here. I really like that we get to collaborate on things like this with other programs and majors, especially since I know that most schools don't have anything similar to this type of collaboration between programs and classes at all. The film that I'm scoring is a comedy, it'll be pretty slapstick and 50's-esque, and I'm really excited to work on it.

Also, from that class, I just did a recording session for one of my previous scores for piano trio. For my non-music major friends, a piano trio is a piano, a violin, and cello. The instrumentalists were AMAZING. They sightread all four of our scores in less than 3 hours, and just nailed it. The digital/audio recording class recorded it for us, so it should be really high quality, and I'm pretty excited to add it to my portfolio.

AND, I'm getting really really close to completely finishing the trombone duet I'm working on, and I should be able to finish my string bass/piano duet within the next few weeks. Which is super exciting, I cut it pretty close with finishing my project last semester, so I'm hoping these projects will be done well before the semester ends so I can get feedback on whatever I decide to work on next. We'll see how that all works out though. Between my projects and filmscoring, I'll have written probably 4x more music than I wrote last semester at the very least, so I'm really glad that I'm getting faster and more productive. Plus, it teaches me how to work on more than one piece of music at once; a necessity in the real world of composers when people actually start hiring you for stuff. This all means that I just seem to keep getting busier and busier, but, hey, a busy musician is always a lot happier than one who has no work, projects, and nothing to do.

By the way, this could possibly be my last post from my current laptop. I finally caved and got a Mac. My mom found one for rather cheap, and I'm extremely excited, because I can go buy cool programs like Logic and whatnot that aren't available for PC. What makes me really excited about this is that I'll be able to do some sequencing stuff from the comfort of my dorm room, and I can continue doing student films with it (hopefully) even when my filmscoring class ends at the end of the semester so I can add cool things like that to my portfolio, too. Plus, I have 2 years to pay it off without interest, and am hoping to pay it off by the end of the summer since I'll be working. So, yeah, I'm a pretty happy camper right now. I got the insurance on it that'll even cover a nuclear bomb hitting my computer, so, no matter what I do to it, it should be OK even in my technologically incapable hands.

What I'm getting at with all of this is: Holy crud, I have so many awesome opportunities here that I don't even know what to do with myself. I mean, I know it's a lot of work, and yeah, I don't get paid... BUT, when people keep telling me not to write all this music for free, I feel like I'm really getting a lot out of it. At the very least, I get to add a new original score to my portfolio (which, by the way, having a large, diverse portfolio tends to make grad schools and future employers happy) and at the very most, I sometimes get really awesome, high-quality recordings from some of my fellow awesome, high-quality musicians, and they do that for free for me, too. It's really a win-win.

Plus, I get to write music, which is the greatest gift of all of this. It's just so darn fun sometimes, especially when I'm inspired, and getting to be in an environment where people are willing to bring it to life for me is stinkin' awesome.

I mean, I know this is what undergraduate is for, but, I really don't know what I'm going to end up focusing on compositionally. I really like jazz, performing jazz, and writing for it, so that would be a really cool option... But I've fallen so completely in love with this filmscoring thing, that part of me wants to move to L.A. when I'm done with this and try to make it there. Another part of me wants to go on to get my masters somewhere in Europe (probably the U.K.) and write for orchestra, because I've had a lot of fun writing for it lately. There's a whole bunch of stuff that I'm still interested in, so, I'm just having a hard time deciding what to do. But, hey, I still have a few more years, and I might find something else really cool which will make my decision harder, or I might actually make up my mind. Who knows? It's all part of the adventure, and part of the reason I think composing is so cool. The options are just completely limitless.

So, there it is, my life for the past few weeks. It's been going pretty great, and I'm going to get some sleep now because I don't really do enough of that.


With love,

P.S. Today's song of the day is...

Below my Feet by Mumford and Sons. It isn't on any of their current albums, but it's super beautiful and I just recently finished arranging a cover to it that I have a lot of fun doing. The link below is to the best  version I could find. Enjoy!

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