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March 22nd, 2016

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05:30 pm - Videos I have made
I've been making album-long bass videos lately and thinking I should write about them here, then I don't get around to it, but now I'm getting around to it.

This one took for gosh darn ever. I had all the songs learned before I left for my trip in September, then I came back in October and wasn't good enough at it until December. This is mostly because I was playing it wrong. It's supposed to be played with a pick but I don't like picks. I like pickles though. Anyway, when I play with a pick for a little while my hand hurts a lot. I think I'm holding it wrong, but I don't think it's worth it to learn a new way of holding it. Unfortunately that means I have to get really good at playing with my fingers because it's about twice as slow as playing with a pick. I found that when I didn't play for a few days, my finger strength went away, and sometimes I went for a week without playing because I was awake at night and my playing somehow bothers my roommate even though he sleeps in the opposite end of the apartment and I use headphones. The thing that really got me happens near the end of the first song when it's a bunch of fast notes in an odd pattern. I thought I had it down but of course when I made the video I couldn't get it right after several tries so I just gave up and kept going.

I also did this thing where I played that first song slowed down because I thought it sounded cool. I may be the only one who thinks so. I often enjoy listening to music at the wrong speed.

This one will probably have the least views of all my full-album covers, because it's German and for some reason most copyrighted music is blocked in Germany. It's unusual in that it's a recent album; usually when I do full albums they're from previous decades. This one was just released last year and I was listening to it and there was something about the bass that made me want to figure it out. What I figured out was: holy crap, it's low. My 5-string bass normally goes down to B, and I'd hardly ever encountered a song where I played that low. For this album I had to tune that string down to A. I didn't expect playing that low would even sound good, but I think it's actually the lowest note on a standard piano. (It's kind of a shame that the most expensive piano wire is hardly ever used, but that's also true of the least expensive.) I generally don't like retuning but it felt pretty cool to play so low.

I'd wanted to do this one for a long time. I imagined lighting incense that would gradually fill the room with smoke, but we don't use incense anymore, and it probably wouldn't have worked anyway. I ended up showing the passage of time in a different way. This album flows together very well, particularly since the last song is a much hazier version of the first song. It's almost a concept album on the subject of how painful love can be. Plus it has some good bass parts (though they're a bit repetitive and overlong; most of these songs would be fine with one less verse) and also it's some great music, so it's perfect for this kind of thing.

For these videos I used a new camera. It's both better and worse than the old one. The old one was good but it had two big flaws: it stopped recording after half an hour and the view screen thing, whatever it's called, is tiny. The new one is a cheap piece of crap but at least I can see myself and I don't have to restart the recording. Actually, it stops recording after about 27 minutes but then it starts up again almost immediately, so I just have to put the files together and figure out how many frames were missed, which isn't too hard. One major annoyance about this new camera is that it lies about its resolution. It claims to be 1080p but it's actually 360p, but stretched out to 3 times its size, so there's a whole bunch of reused pixels, so I have to deal with huge files without the benefits of huge files. I even have to use the highest resolution because for some reason the other options don't sync with my audio recording. My old camera was 720p so this is a downgrade in terms of resolution, but I guess that's not hugely important for videos like this.
Current Mood: tired, very tired, so very tired
Current Music: My Brightest Diamond - I Am Not The Bad Guy

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