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Jedi

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O.K. guys.

 

Here is a song I wrote and enjoy and would love to get your feedback.

 

http://www.mp3.com/deadblackjedis

 

the name of the song is "By June"

 

My apologies, I don't know how to make a link directly to the song.

 

Enjoy, and say whatever you want.

 

Namaste

 

Jedi

"All conditioned things are impermanent. Work out your own salvation with diligence."

 

The Buddha's Last Words

 

R.I.P. RobT

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Jedi,

 

Great Tune.

 

First, your vocals are great. great job. Straight, no effects that I could hear, however, did you use compression? Anyway, I like it very much.

 

Your Strat tone is great, and very unique without accompaniment. Record direct or miced an amp?

 

Song itself is mellow and relaxing and I mean it in a good way. The arrangement is fine. I do not have any particular criticism because I think its fine the way it is.

 

Good Luck,

 

and keep posting.

 

Jim

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I like your voice. The recording is nice & clean, but the song is a bit repetitive. I kept hoping there would be a trumpet solo. Maybe that's just me. :)

 

thanks for sharing.

--za

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Very nice Jedi, great voice.

The only thing I can find fault with is the length. To me it needs to have a change in direction/tempo? to break it up a bit & maintain interest over the length of the song. Probably something minor & maybe as simple as adding horns (I'd be partial to a good sax) as ZA suggested.

:wave:

 

Our Joint

 

"When you come slam bang up against trouble, it never looks half as bad if you face up to it." The Duke...

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Great tuneage, D!

 

Great voice...I like the somewhere between jazz/pop/R&B vibe.

 

But, I'll go along with the length criticism. Good verses, good chorus. I'd add a bridge to it if it were me...but, I can see a benefit to keeping that vibe you have happening there too...sort of hypnotic in a way. Maybe trim say, :30 seconds or so off the length. And, hmmm...do you know anyone who does producing or arranging? Sometimes, to me anyway, sometimes the arrangement is the dressing on the salad. You've got basically guitar and voice there. A lot of room for creativity...backup vox, some keys...whatever. Some nice soft rhythm stuff...sort of a Latin flavor in the percussion. Sometimes I get too close to my own tune to hear a successful arrangement, although I'm usually close to what I want in my head, but an additional pair of ears can be invaluable.

"Cisco Kid, was a friend of mine"
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Thanks a lot for the insightful comments!!! :evil:

 

I look as "by June" as a good start in that direction.

 

Hey Jim,

 

Thanks for the comments, man. That guitar is my acoustic. I used a $50 Dean Markley pick-up straight to the line. Maybe that's why it sounds a little weird to you. Next time I'm thinking of going through my Mic Pre.

 

Thanks so much, folks. This forum is great, and is really serving its purpose. You guys gave me some really great ideas and more confidence and clarity. (but horns?) :) LOL

 

Namaste

 

Jedi

"All conditioned things are impermanent. Work out your own salvation with diligence."

 

The Buddha's Last Words

 

R.I.P. RobT

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Jedi, I get that same clank from my ProMag. Is that what you used? You might see what it does through a pre but I like it with that clank. Character. You might try run the Ruby Tube plug in on the guitar. It'll add a tube vibe to the sound.

 

Anyway, I run my acoustics direct into my little mixer & to the sound card. When I use the pickup it always has that same type of quality. I have the ProMag, SweetSpot & Fishman Rare Earth Single Coil & have that same kind of thing going on. Granted, some songs it would suck on, but not By June.

 

I went through all your stuff on the site. You have a great voice.

Why ain't you famous or something????

 

Well wait...Yer famous here on these forums. :freak:

 

Our Joint

 

"When you come slam bang up against trouble, it never looks half as bad if you face up to it." The Duke...

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Dak,

 

That was too cool. Thanks, man. You got me in the heart with that one. :cry:

 

BTW, I listened to your songs too. You have a wonderful voice as well. I didn't comment on your songs, because I wasn't that knowledgable of the genre, and therefore could not add anything useful (Not much of a country listener). Anyway, I always wanted to tell you that you had a great voice, and to keep doing what you're doing.

 

Your fan and friend,

 

Jedi

 

Oh yeah, thanks for the guitar info, but I'm going to a hard disk recorder. Anyway, thanks brother.

"All conditioned things are impermanent. Work out your own salvation with diligence."

 

The Buddha's Last Words

 

R.I.P. RobT

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Jedi Master,

 

This is a brilliant recording in every sense of the word. I'd like to hear a more "effected" version sometime (with delay and some very expensive reverb), but it's very interesting to hear it in its "clean" version. It sounds like I'm soloing the guitar and lead vocal of a top ten hit. Your singing is top notch, and the guitar part totally grooves. You've got just the right amount of compression on everything. May I ask what mic you used and what your guitar chain was. (Strat, right?)

 

This is top notch work. A little dash of reverb would make is perfect.

The Black Knight always triumphs!

 

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Dan, Where you been?

 

Can you see me in Jersey? I would think so I'm lighting up like a Christmas tree from your comments. :idea: Thank you, partner. You know how much I value your opinion. You and Dak all of you guys, boy, you got me buzzing.

 

As far as the mic, audio tech atm31. I love the way that thing sounds on my voice. I've got a "betterr" (read slightly more exspensive) mic, but it's something about Audio tech that does it for me. When I set up a vocal room or space, I'm going to get a AT4033.

 

The chain for the guitar was super simple. Acoustic guitar straight to the Vs-1880 gt. jack via $50 buck Dean Markley pickup. Like Dak said, character.

 

Oh yeah, Jim, my apologies for not answering your question about the compression. None at all going in, but a little on the entire song from the mastering tools on the Vs-1880. I got a descent mic pre/comp. but I don't like compression too much. Also, at the time, I wasn't good with the compressor settings. Now, I've had enough time to experiment so you'll hear a little more compression on my vocals. Not too much though, I love dynamics.

 

Well, thanks again, Dan.

 

Maybe you could write the bridge that this song most definitely needs.

 

Namaste

 

Jedi

"All conditioned things are impermanent. Work out your own salvation with diligence."

 

The Buddha's Last Words

 

R.I.P. RobT

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Originally posted by dblackjedi:

Hey Jim,

 

Thanks for the comments, man. That guitar is my acoustic. I used a $50 Dean Markley pick-up straight to the line. Maybe that's why it sounds a little weird to you. Next time I'm thinking of going through my Mic Pre.

 

(but horns?) :) LOL

 

Namaste

 

Jedi

I noticed the acoustic pickup to board sound as well. Depends on what you're going for, but, I'd definitely experiment with mic'ing it. Then, you might try mixing the mic with the direct in and see what you get.

 

As to instrumentation...try stuff until you hit on something that sounds right. Maybe not horns...but how 'bout some B3 style organ, and maybe a Lee Oskar (War) style harmonica? Don't know...that's why it's good to get different ears listening to it.

 

And, bridges aren't bad. You can always remove it later if you don't like it.

"Cisco Kid, was a friend of mine"
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Thanks Tedster,

 

That is exactly what I'm doing right now, with my acoustics. One of my acoustics is so tiny I can't fit my pick up in it, so I'm definitely going to mic that. Thanks for all tips, man.

 

Namaste

 

Jedi

"All conditioned things are impermanent. Work out your own salvation with diligence."

 

The Buddha's Last Words

 

R.I.P. RobT

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Jedi I just checked your tune. First off, great feel, really grooves to my ears. I like the intimate feeling. Perfect execution, dig your vox and acoustic and you dialed up great tones. (tymbers?!) I have no problem with the length or lack of a middle 8 because it keeps me going throughout the tune, and what else matters? There are no rules.

 

Only critique I've got is I think it would sound better in a room. I think that Cakewalk sfx 3 Soundspace was made for your tune. Just put the parts in a groovy sounding room.

 

As far as instrumentation goes, I hear a couple of first class percussionists in the background and a bass part by me. :cool: Thing is, if you just put what you've got in a great room, that's prolly all you need.

 

Keep it up man, I'm gonna check some of your other tunes soon.

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Thanks Dave,

 

I've got some friends who have cakewalk. Thanks for such specific advise, I appreciate it. Didn't know you were a bass player. I don't have one right now. That's a great compliment stating that you liked it enough to add a bass line to it. Thanks, brother.

 

Intimate, that is exactly what I was trying to do. I'm glad that got communicated to you. The length thing man I've gone back and forth with that thing when making this version of "By June." Obviously, I sided with w/out bridge, but honestly I don't know. I'm finishing some other jammies pretty soon(moving in a whole other direction) and then I'll come back to revist "By June". It's great that with the advice from you guys I'll have more to come back with. Thanks again, DC.

 

Namaste

 

Jedi

"All conditioned things are impermanent. Work out your own salvation with diligence."

 

The Buddha's Last Words

 

R.I.P. RobT

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Jedi,

 

I listened to all of your tunes and I really enjoyed to vibes I picked up. I have no room to talk myself, but I think that the main thing that you are lacking on ALL of your tunes is a professional recording engineer. One the arranged songs, I struggled seriously to make out vocals in several locations throughout all of the songs. My strength being in lyrics, I like hearing the words behind the song and I get frustrated when I hear a line the stands out and peaks my curiousity as to what the song is saying and then immediately the words are suffocated by the instruments before I can make sense of them. I agree with all the others; YOUR VOICE IS TOP NOTCH, and should DEFFINITELY hold the weight in being heard throughout the recording process. Cool grooves in the music arrangements on all songs, but get that voice of yours out front; it's your strongest selling point. Good bands comes a dime a dozen, but good bands that have a quality vocalist that carries a unique style, unlike all the popular artists, are hard to come by. "Unique" is what will get you a record deal. I've got to admit; after listening to the first song "By June," you shocked me out of my wits with the songs that followed. I was expecting mellow, and I found far from it... but I really enjoyed the unexpected. Even though some were on the far side, like Bullet Shrieking Sky, the mood kind of gave me a Sheryl Crow feeling in the instruments being played in a somewhat off key bent kind of way. Wierd, but cool. :D

You can take the man away from his music, but you can't take the music out of the man.

 

Books by Craig Anderton through Amazon

 

Sweetwater: Bruce Swedien\'s "Make Mine Music"

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Hey Jedi. i really like this tune.

And i liked it even more on the second listen, which is great IMO.

 

Don't know for sure but i assume this is a draft recording. There have been some suggestions as to production that i agree with.

I think the tune stands strong as it is with just guitar and voice but the production could be improved.

i find the guitar has that "low-mid acoustic guitar sound", maby try to mic it more from a 12th frett pointed at the body angle and with a room mic running also to give it some sense of placement.

Your voice sounded nice though.

 

I run into this "how do i make it sound more real" issue all the time too and i find it is a big factor in making something sound professional.

Digireverbs can ruin things, especially when the misic is as intimate as this tune, the verb is so exposed so it needs to sound real IMO.

 

You can take those dry tracks and run them loud through a speaker in a good sounding room and cop that for the verb too, that might be kinda cool.

 

Cool stuff. :thu:

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Jedi,

 

Listening to your tune again...if I were you, I'd pick up some production ideas from listening to Tracy Chapman and Ephraim Lewis CDs.

 

Wow...I just went to an Ephraim Lewis fan page. I didn't realize that he'd died in 1994. Damn.

"Cisco Kid, was a friend of mine"
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Originally posted by Tedster

Listening to your tune again...if I were you, I'd pick up some production ideas from listening to Tracy Chapman and Ephraim Lewis CDs.

I am a huge Tracy Chapman fans. :love: I've got all her stuff except "New Beginning." Unfamiliar, with Ephraim Lewis, I'll definitely check him out. I'm kind of excited to hear something new that you would put in the same breath as Tracy. Thanks, Ted.

 

Halljams,

 

Thanks for the production tips. I'm doing a lot of experimenting with micing my amps and my acoustic guitars and all that right now. The room I'm recording in must suck, because every time I use my Akg C3000 as a room mic it just sucks. I love that mic, so I'm trying to find the right spot for it.

 

Thanks Anifa for the insightful comments. The last five songs on the Website are pretty old recordings. We released them in 1998. I hope I'm getting better. I'm going to print your post and give it to my drummer. We argue all the time about the vocal levels in the mix. :mad::D:mad:

 

All of you guys comments are well recieved. Your interest has been a great motivator and encourager for me. I thank you sincerely.

 

Namaste

 

Jedi

"All conditioned things are impermanent. Work out your own salvation with diligence."

 

The Buddha's Last Words

 

R.I.P. RobT

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Thanks Anifa for the insightful comments. The last five songs on the Website are pretty old recordings. We released them in 1998. I hope I'm getting better. I'm going to print your post and give it to my drummer. We argue all the time about the vocal levels in the mix.

Stick to your guns about holding the vocal out front. If words are not meant to be heard, then what's the use of finding a good vocalist to front the band :confused:

You can take the man away from his music, but you can't take the music out of the man.

 

Books by Craig Anderton through Amazon

 

Sweetwater: Bruce Swedien\'s "Make Mine Music"

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One of the coolest "celeb encounter" stories I've heard...this guy was strolling through a park one sunny summer day. There was a girl singing and playing guitar...just there in the park, all by herself. He listened and watched for a bit...finally walked up to her and said "I'm sorry, I don't mean to interrupt, but you look and sound just like Tracy Chapman". She just smiled at him and kept singing. It was Tracy Chapman. I guess he sat down and was treated to a nice little impromptu concert! How cool!!!

 

Ephraim Lewis's sound was a bit more commercially produced. Actually, I'm only familiar with his one hit, "Drowning in Your Eyes"...a really pretty song released in the early 90s. He was compared to sort of a cross between Marvin Gaye and Seal in a review. Man, you can't go wrong with that, either!

"Cisco Kid, was a friend of mine"
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Originally posted by dblackjedi:

s.

 

Well, thanks again, Dan.

 

Maybe you could write the bridge that this song most definitely needs.

djb - I'm not sure that it NEEDS a bridge, but I'll see what I can do. ;)

The Black Knight always triumphs!

 

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Originally posted by Dan South:

djb - I'm not sure that it NEEDS a bridge, but I'll see what I can do. ;)

Jedi, I agree with Dan on this. After listening several times, the only place I can see where a bridge would not seem out of place is just over the halfway point, before the oohh's...

I'm liking it better each time I hear it & I like it real well the first couple of listens.

 

Our Joint

 

"When you come slam bang up against trouble, it never looks half as bad if you face up to it." The Duke...

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Jedi...

I'm not sure if I mentioned this to you before, but I worked at a music magazine for 5 1/2 years. I've probably listened to more than 10,000 demos. I'm not talking "official" releases -- I'm talking home-made demos made by average Joe musicians. Many, many of them were tough listens.

 

Having said all this, I finally got a chance to listen to "By June."

You did a great job. Sounds like a single take on both guitar and voice. While you're definitely on the right track with this one, I think some of the folks who mentioned the need for a bridge in this tune are probably right. I kind of heard/felt one somewhere after the second chorus -- in that rising, open-string chord thing that comes on the tail end of the chorus. I visualized that progression going a full step higher, with the vocal line opening up a la the bridge in "Wait In Vain" by Bob Marley or something --("Summer's here/I'm still waiting there.")

This is the kind of song I like for my bass-playing style, and my buddy (the drummer in my band) could definitely tear this tune a new a-hole. Hey, we're a package deal... Wanna track this one here in Philly with us?

We could actually do this if you wanted.

\m/

Erik

"To fight and conquer in all your battles is not supreme excellence; supreme excellence consists of breaking the enemy's resistance without fighting."

--Sun Tzu

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Originally posted by Sylver:

Wow, there is so much talent around here! That's some great stuff, Jedi. Hey, why the hell aren't you on the radio? Great voice and playing.

Cause he hasn't got breast enlargements and bleached blonde hair or he doesn't sound like Michael Jackson hanging around in some boy band :D:D:D He's just got talent, there's not a market for that!

 

Jez kiddin' folks. :D

 

Keep up the good work Jedi!

You can take the man away from his music, but you can't take the music out of the man.

 

Books by Craig Anderton through Amazon

 

Sweetwater: Bruce Swedien\'s "Make Mine Music"

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Jedi ...

 

Brother, keep up the good work. I think you've got half the battle won by having some good material in the first place... And a unique vocal style. I think the production sweeting would really put some icing on the cake.

 

BTW: If you can get Dan South to write a bridge for you maybe you can trade some Triton tricks and share them with me. And if DCR can't make the bass recording date I'm sure I could!

 

RobT

RobT

 

Famous Musical Quotes: "I would rather play Chiquita Banana and have my swimming pool than play Bach and starve" - Xavier Cugat

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Jedi. Sweeeeeet!

This is my first visit to the Songwriters section of the forum. Just looking around for some new tunes that don't suck. I feel like I hit the jackpot. Thank you.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Dear Mr. Jedi-Man,

 

I have listened to your little track and I think it's pretty good. I must agree with some of the earlier comments though. It seems to be a bit on the long side, and I know how much you hate long songs. I will assume that the length issue is simply due to the fact that you have a lot that you are trying to say. Nevertheless, you could really trim it down a little and not detract from the overall vibe of the song. I will say this though, I think the vocals on this track are, without question, the best I've ever heard from you...very, very nice indeed Sir. For some reason though, I seem to be hearing a laid-back and really mellow drum track behind you...I don't know why, it just seems to pop into my head when I listen to the track. You may consider doing another version as a full production, just to see how it turns out. I think you may be pleasantly surprised by the outcome.

 

Jedi_3

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