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April 3, 2008

Standing At The Crossroads

So, since coming back from vacation I've been trying to make a decision about the way forwards. Do I focus on strumming and do the open mic thing? Do I lay down some demo tracks and put them out there online? Do I just go all out trying to find other local musicians to form a band?

Whatever I do, I still have to keep up the practice and make sure it's structured as opposed to just reverting to form and noodling aimlessly. Structure is good for me, though I naturally rebel against it! To some extent I feel like I've been in limbo this week. What with going away on holiday then catching up at work, I've barely touched my guitars.

I think one of the most important things for me to do right now is to start learning to play songs from start to finish. My first song selection will be... (drum roll)... a solo acoustic version of "Outside Woman Blues". I've been listening to a lot of Hendrix lately and have the urge to tackle some of his funkier stuff but I already know half of "Outside Woman Blues" (and it sounds cool and somewhat Hendrixy, using a punchy E7#9 chord) I might as well learn the rest. How hard can it be, really?

I'm giving strong consideration to attending a brand new blues jam tonight, just around the corner from Oxford Circus in London. The only thing holding me back is that I'm knackered from work. Hey, tomorrow's Friday, right? Who needs sleep when the weekend's on the way? If I do go along I'll let you know whether it was a hit or a miss. I don't expect it to be too busy (famous last words) as it's the first time it's taking place.

Venue? The Old Explorer pub on 23 Great Castle Street, kick-off at 8:30pm.

If I don't go along tonight then I'll probably try it next week.

So... what am I going to do to move The Project forwards? I'm torn between doing the 'open mic' thing and the 'record demos' thing.

For now I'm putting the 'join a band' option on ice for the simple reason that it seems to be really hard unless you run in the right circles. Open mic-ing might put me in those circles. I've been searching for band stuff on the internet recently using a number of different websites with absolutely no success. Either I'm selling myself wrong or the sites simply don't work, at least for me. They seem to be populated by 15-18 year olds looking for similar. When it comes time to look for bandmates (unless they find me!) I think I'll resort to the old school methods of posting flyers in music stores and so on.

I guess if I'm working towards open mic-ing then I can always record demos along the way as part of the process of learning songs. Let's see, I've got 272 days remaining, according to my countdown clock... that's three quarters of the year. Gotta just keep up the momentum and catch my second wind. I guess that gives me a date for the calendar: July 1st will be halfway through 2008 and hence midpoint for the project.

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