A One-Man-Band's DIY Production Journal.

Archive for September, 2008

Looking for inspiration…

It’s always this part of production I hate… filling in the little gaps. Sometimes it’s what makes the record count. I spent most of the weekend tweaking some of the lyrics, for content as well as making it fit with the melodies. But I seem to get stuck. Maybe I’m thinking too hard. It becomes one of those “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” kinda things.

It’s a beautiful sunny day out here in TriBeCa, and I’m hoping to catch some wind of inspiration to cure this freaking writer’s block. If anyone is out there who enjoys writing… I’m curious to know what gets your gears in motion.

Studio away from studio…

I spend a lot of time away from the studio… this is what makes me such a gadget freak.

I crank out the PSP when I feel like kicking ass in Tekken, or the Nintendo DS when I want to race some Mario karts, or if i have some lyrics to type up, i whip out my new macbook… but when I get a little inspiration for a melody, I can’t exactly bring around my guitar or drumset, or voice record myself singing that melody… so I spent $1.99 on my iPhone and purchased this app called “Band”.

it gives me a drumpad, a piano and a bass guitar that I can tap with multi-fingers… it can also record whatever I play (in layers) so I can punch up a little song demo right on my iPhone.

pretty sick if you ask me…

Creating the anthem…

Okay, so as of right now, I have about 3 more songs to write up the lyrics for… and the most important one i’m focused on is the intro to the album… It’s gonna be an instrumental intro that leads in to a style i haven’t really done before; im gonna rap over an rock beat that breaks into an Emo chorus… Yea it’s been done before, but im kinda nervous about pulling this off without sounding campy, since i have to balance ‘tough’ with emo. It’ll set up the theme that it’s a split punk and hip-hop record.

As for the other songs, I’m teaming up again with my brother on another Freestyle Dance track “Bring Back The Beat”. If you wanna hear the song he and I did for In Stone, it’s “Promise Me This” on Richy923.com.

Alright… enough blogging, more writing.

MySpace Music Page

You can listen to the completed songs at http://www.myspace.com/richy923

Feedback appreciated, thanks!


Four years in the crafting, face:the.music will switch-foot between pop-punk and hip-hop, connecting only by lyrics telling the story of a guy who must learn the difference between passion and principle. Due for release in Fall ’08.

Recording Process, Drums

The first half of production of face:the.music was recorded on my old XP computer, using Sony Vegas.

The hip-hop beats were built using FruityLoops and my cheapo Yamaha DJX II. As for the rock songs, I attempted to record everything live, but the end result were weak sounding drums. This is something I’ve been trying to tackle for a few months now.

For the tech-savvy people, I’m using an Alesis Multimix for my preamp and FireWire interface, and these Audix Fusion 6-piece stage drum microphones that I won off eBay. I’ve studied live drum miking in school, and recorded live drums in the studio I used to work at, but it’s been so long and I’m a bit rusty.

Since I was so anxious to lay down the guitars and vocals for some songs, I ended up building the drums on fruityloops temporarily, but i’ve decided to stick with them even though they sound kinda fake and processed.

“Just a Little Ode to Her” “Rush” and “I Need Today” might stay as is, but im going to attempt live drums again for the remaining 4 rock songs.

Since I got myself a Mac running Logic or Garageband now, I’m hoping the audio processing on those programs will give me a little more fidelity and headroom so my drums can sound better than my last attempt.

Writing Process

I started writing face:the.music about 3 or 4 years ago, right after I finished producing my latest hip-hop compilation “In Stone”.

I wanted to create my own masterpiece; something that differed from your usual album. After being inspired by Green Day’s American Idiot, I thought it’d be a challenge to tell a story not just through one song, but through a string of songs; a concept album.

Originally intended to be a straight hip-hop record, Face The Music was supposed to chronicle my jump into adulthood, but hip-hop just wasn’t me anymore. I went back to my roots in garage punk, since my rap lyrics were becoming a little dull. But instead of abandoning it totally, I changed my hip-hop focus from agressive stylized rhymes and witty battle cues, to something more… emotional and storytelling.

The Richy923 from “In Stone” wasn’t the persona I had in real life anymore. After listening to my VERY first record, “The 5′ 3″ EP”, the re-introduction of rock music to compliment my style of hip-hop was what I needed to tell a story.

Hello world!

Hey all, welcome to my new blog site. Here you’ll find my entries detailing the progress of my current productions, as well as some daily musings. I have three current works in progress, two of which are still in the baby stages, (Season 4 of Richy923’s Webisodes, and my short film “The Visiting”) while my present effort, my second album “face:the.music” will be the main focus of this blog for the next couple months.

Like most personal blogs, I write this mainly as my own little journal, but I’d still like to share with anyone who’s interested.

Stay tuned…