Bernie improvising

The Songwriting Process and Live Streaming

Now I have the time to do the songwriting process and live streaming is my test ground because gigs at this time are cancelled. (see Note at the bottom of the page)

The original idea was to test out the songs at open mics in the area. However, now I am going to use live streaming to try out the songs I am writing.

Live streaming will let me work at a micro-level that I might not have done before. The ability to try out parts before I actually assemble a song will be interesting to try out.

There is a risk in doing this because improvising is always a trip into the unknown. Doing it live brings it to another level of anticipation or fear.

The songwriting process and live streaming is an approach to writing that is also performing at the same time. So it will be interesting to get feedback from an audience.

Using the looping pedal creates a fixed parameter

The looping pedal/band mate

When you have a collection of lyrics (192 pages collected over 10 years) and years of musical ideas in chart form and recorded bits, you need to start a form of triage.

So you pick a few and try them out and see if they take you anywhere worth exploring further.

To create a groove behind the “musical bit” I like using my EHX 720 looping pedal. My rig of percussion instruments includes a 2 head drum, a couple of darbukas, a mini Cajon, shakers, electronic drum pads and an old iPod that has Korg Kaos and reason apps.

So moving forward, it is the 2nd week since starting the songwriting process for my first Album (CD/LP/collection, whatever you call it these days) of music performed on the Chapman stick.

There are a few instrumentals, but the album has several songs with lyrics and vocals.

Live looping at the Barfly

Note

Note: At the time of writing this, it has been 1 week since isolating myself and my wife. I have my home recording studio, my video gear and now… I am here all the time.

Performing Music Live Tips and Thoughts

When you have 48 hours before performing music live, tips like these are essential because with out a checklist you will certainly have chaos.

Here are few general items for the best chances of a stellar performance:

  • Equipment (including back up)
  • Proper rehearsal
  • Personal maintenance

Equipment

Performing music live I use Line 6 MM, Diamond compressor, Digitech RP55, TC electronics MojoMojo
Some of the pedals I use

In my case the basics are instruments and amplification

I play a Chapman stick so the Stick plus 2 cables, pedal board, power supply and all the hook up cables… plus extra strings. There is a tuner and tools for the stick in my gig bag.

Using percussion means my hand drum, shaker, Guira, Cajon and some drum pads will need a mixer, mics and cables.

I have 2 amplifiers A Phil Jones (for the bass side of the stick and Fender GT-100 for the treble side.

For vocals I bring my own mic (AKG C-1000) and cable. Plus a few 9 volt batteries in case there is no phantom power from the live event console.

There are few other items I always bring. A video camera and tripod… because to get gigs video is so important, so even if it’s locked down on the tripod, I will get some footage. This is good not just for promo footage but to also see how I performed… what can I improve.

It also helps to have a phone or recording device for an audio reference of your performance.

Now the other equipment is a poster I banner behind me and some merch. At the moment I just have T-shirts as I am still putting a CD together of my original material.

Some basic performing live music tips

I use a spoken word presentation to get people to sign up on my mailing list. Also a hashtag they can use to post pictures/video on social media.

Have business cards and other promo material to hand out to prospective fans, people interested in hiring you or booking agents.