How are you preparing for FAWM '18?

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  • @quork  1 week

    I have a year's worth of song concepts, rough lyrics and draft chord progressions. My plan over the next three weeks is to go through this material and organize it into songs to work on in February.

    What are you doing before February 1st?

  • @tiller2  1 week

    I have a short hook/idea list but mostly trying to clear my recording project out of the way and make my songwriting mind blank for Feb.

  • @metalfoot  1 week

    I have a plan in mind for my 14, and other than that, just trying to get well before February so I can sing my heart out...

  • @zecoop  1 week

    I need to clean the studio... My floor space has reduced dramatically, lol. Other than that... no preparation. I need to play guitars more this month to get my callouses back! πŸ˜€

  • @mdavisto  1 week

    I have absolutely no idea how it's going to go. I know I'm keen, but, that's about it.

  • @cts 1 week

    Shelving lots of old songs on separate hard drive. Writing all of my ideas on sticky notes. Watching Mix 2gether featuring the awesome Joe Gilder. Listening to the remastered Purple Rain Deluxe set. Listening to The Bamboos. Listening to quite a few FAWMers from last year to see who I could possible write songs for...
    ...that's my plan.

  • @ustaknow 1 week

    Oiled the chair again πŸ˜€

  • @mdavisto  1 week

    Ooh, I forgot, I actually did do a thing that counts, a bit. I cleaned out and reorganised my plugins folders in FL Studio (which is my weapon of choice).

    I went through all the synths and threw out the ones I never use or are inherently crap (into a backup folder because what if I one day need them hoard hoard hoard hoard). I did the same for the effects.

    Then I went through the tedious task of removing each plugin from the database and adding it back into the correct category. I could have just moved them but the rats nest that was my plugin library dates from 5 versions of FL back. These days, when you add a plugin, it makes a screenshot thumbnail as well.

    So my plugs are now neatly organised and pretty. I'm sure that'll help.

  • @barrygoldman  1 week

    Coming up with some rough ideas, generally saving my tunes for February. This is the build up period, it may make my next album come along nicer as my last did. So I'm just waiting, coming up with this and that along the way.

  • @adnama17 1 week

    I'm supposed to prepare for this thing???

  • @iveg 1 week

    I'm watching Friends reruns and petting the dog.

  • @sw1n3flu  1 week

    @iveg WINNING

  • @cblack 1 week

    I'm trying to put together a debut EP to be released right before FAWM starts. Because then for FAWM I can do an album. πŸ˜€

  • @w1n  1 week

    I'm trying to wrap up Two unfinished long term recording projects I've been working on for others. And also doing the final touches on an EP of music I wrote during FAWM16 & FAWM17. Trying my best to get into a productive and creative mood

  • @jibbidy34  1 week

    Yeah...saved my archive, updated my profile. Come on February....!

  • @chipwithrow  1 week

    Fun thread to read! My prep began a few days ago when I checked to see if there was activity here - and there is!
    I've been practicing my new ukulele. It was an unexpected yet totally welcome Christmas gift.
    In fact, I was just playing blues in G on it, and a song idea came to me. So I started a "FAWM Ideas 2018" document, wrote a first verse, and then stopped myself. Gotta wait til Feb 1!
    I should probably go back and look at my list of FAWM/5090 ideas from last year, too - I know there are quite a few I didn't get to.

  • @ampersandman  1 week

    I'm trying to finish last year's album and started taking notes of little ideas.
    Already last year I started to compile a spotify playlist with inspiring sounds since I want to embrace rhythm, beats and electronic sounds this year.

  • @corinnelucy 1 week

    Listening to all the music that I wish my music was more similar to. I'll be doing some admin with all the scraps and ideas too - I write in a notepad usually, but during last FAWM I kept a Word document so I could be more organised about what promising threads I still had to follow and that helped a lot. I'm also going to a songwriting workshop at the end of January and I'm bound to come home with a bumper crop of ideas. HELLO FAWM!

  • @tiller2  1 week

    Oh, and I'm putting my fawm tee-shirts and hoodie into rotation.

  • @tootoobee  1 week

    CLEANING my desk, my DAW, my mind, the house ... so there's enough room to stuff it with clutter in February.

  • @gromwaf 1 week

    I bought a pig from a local farmer...
    And yes... It's almost time to do some cleaning in the studio...

  • @brrrse  1 week

    I got the Breedlove 3/4 acoustic out and played around. I like this E open tuning I set up - but wanted to go back to standard tuning. As I carefully turned one of the pegs, my muse cautioned me to hold the guitar in cello-style while I tuned it - sure enough.. PING - string broke. No injuries, thankfully, but I'm thinking the universe is saying to leave the acoustic alone right now.

  • @ustaknow 1 week

    Hey @gromwaf - where did you get lessons for playing the pig?
    -- I know you like metal... can't wait to hear the Mix. 😝

  • @gromwaf 1 week

    @ustaknow ahh, the pig is for sacrificial purposes only. Not to be played... Haha...

  • @oneslowtyper 1 week

    I updated my bio with a few words... then prepare for play-offs. Not a big to-do list, so I'm good. LOL

  • @chipwithrow  1 week

    I noticed several of you (not as many as I thought) have some rough ideas and scraps of songs ready to go. More of you than I thought said you're going in with a blank slate.
    I used to be a stickler for starting from scratch right on Feb 1 (or July 4 for 5090). Then I started compiling lists of titles. Now (and I just did it again this morning) I can't help myself from coming up with a few lines or even a first verse. And last night, and again this morning, I recorded some uke noodling that I think can become instrumentals.
    I usually go well past 14 songs (28 is my personal best, and 17 last year felt like an off-year) and I've proven to myself I can easily complete the challenge. So even with this saving of ideas, I'll probably come up with 14 new ones once Feb 1 rolls around.

  • @andygetch  1 week

    Practice my instruments, learn songs I wrote and covers, and read. I write a quick song a week between challenges just to stay in songwriting shape and cause I can't not. Then I increase to two then three songs a week before the challenge start. I now have a theme and have jotted down a list of title ideas.

  • @frey 1 week

    I'm not. I'm going to go with the first thoughts that pop into my head each day of February. 😝

  • @ianuarius 1 week

    Previous years I've been really excited for it to start. This year I'm not. So, I think it's going to go well.

    How am I preparing? I'm not. I'll figure it out on the spot. What could go wrong?

  • @sailingmagpie 1 week

    The thing that always takes me the longest is making beats, so this year, I'm making some basic ones that I can use to write to. Hopefully this means I can concentrate on the important stuff and not get as bogged down!

  • @tcelliott  1 week

    Trying to finish this album that was suppose to be done December 1st. Artwork, final mixes... some sort of mastering process... figuring out distribution etc.,

  • @brrrse  1 week

    @tcelliott I +1 and like your post.

  • @tootoobee  1 week

    Lot's of great ideas to put on my list as well! Thank you FAWMily πŸ˜€ Guess I have some stuff to do than just cleaning (and even this will keep me busy πŸ˜‰ )

  • @helenseviltwin  1 week

    I've booked a week's holiday to hang out with one of my favourite collaborators. Does that count?

  • @kathym 1 week

    I am now in living quarters that should give me more flexibility than I've had in several years. I've got a week off in January, so my to do list is fairly sizeable, but with fawm coming up, I should feel more motivated.
    I really need to get a new printer, so that is going to be on my to do list as well. I've got all the strings, picks, notebooks, etc. that I'll need. I could use a new fawm hoodie and perhaps a new coffee mug.

  • @juoppis  1 week

    I rewired my music room, got a new Mac dedicated for this stuff and a couple of new displays. Oh, and really went crazy during the Black Friday. I think I have about 300 gigs of virtual synths and drums and so on to go during FAWM.

    Since I now have probably tens of thousands of presets I need to really pick just something in order to move forward during FAWM. Otherwise I'm tinkering the sounds of my first song on the last of February.

  • @iveg 1 week

    @tcelliott +1 like. I haven't finished any songs on my Dec 1 album.

  • @atitlan 1 week

    Mainly by lots of noodling with synths in my VST collection - getting to know the sounds so that I can find what I'm looking for when I need it and getting some riff and melody fragments that may find their way into songs during FAWM.

    Also been doing a lot of listening to music - revisiting the well.

    Still need to turn my 50/90 songs into an album. Just haven't got round to it yet.

  • @brrrse  1 week

    Today is the day to break out all your old Advent Calendars and Christmas countdown calendars. Only 24 days left until FAWM! Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet?

  • @torniojaws 1 week

    I never prepare for FAWM, except by setting up a template Cubase project a few days before February. Keeps it much more fresh for me πŸ˜€ I never know what kind of songs I end up with, so it's very interesting every year πŸ˜€

  • @lvgd09 1 week

    Happy New Year everybody.

    Well, every guitar I own needs strings and I'm broke (no money). Also, my skills with audio need a tune-up. Vocals are coming out flat right now and my song ideas are not very interesting. Something has got to give. I have a little time today and will try to fix some of this (practice).

  • @sw1n3flu  1 week

    @brrrse almost..... hang in there!

  • @sw1n3flu  1 week

    @tcelliott smash it out, you know you can do it, so do it. You rock.

    Did you get a guitar yet?!

  • @regis 1 week

    I should be moving into my new house in a couple weeks, so first I need to unpack and set up the studio. Than it's just a matter of convincing my wife, toddler, newborn, and dogs to give me half a shot at FAWMing. Piece of cake, right?

  • @edwardsmusic 1 week

    I don't think I'm much prepared, to be honest. The idea I really want to work on is a project with guest singers on each song, but I'm not sure how I'm going to complete all these songs in that amount of time.

  • @nancyrost  1 week

    I'm organizing my space and equipment. I also bought a used stereo at a thrift shop so I could listen to more music. I set it up tonight and discovered five Willie Nelson CDs inside.

  • @timfatchen 1 week

    I'm pressing the More Chaos button. It's just as well i have the brains of a starfish, it makes it easier to regenerate fingers.

  • @cblack 1 week

    Been practicing keys a lot lately, with the hope that I can maybe put together a song or two of piano music. Actually been making some pretty good improvements on keys, which is awesome, and FAWM would definitely be the place to share my very first piano pieces, if I make any. πŸ˜€

  • @oddbod  1 week

    Done –
    paid my annual webspace fee
    cleaned up the hard drive

    Still to do -
    spend hours choosing/editing that perfect homepage image only to ditch it on 1st Feb in favour of some random photo
    try to think of something vaguely interesting to write under β€œInfluences” and β€œShort Bio”

  • @unkept 1 week

    I'm preparing by being more active on Song Skirmish. It worked well for me last FAWM!

    I'm pretty pumped about FAWM again this year.

  • @shoehaze 1 week

    Trying to iron out my creative process and simplify my setup. I've practised individual instruments so I can make 4-track songs interesting enough. Now I got some ideas from previous comments too: cleaning my room/studio and hard drives.

  • @standup  1 week

    Studying the lead guitar playing of Bob Stinson... Actually, guitar lead bits are a weak spot for me, so I'm taking some lessons and trying to work on it. And actually, Bob Stinson's work with the Replacements was really good.

  • @kovbleu  1 week

    So far I've just been thinking about how I should get preparing! LOL I need to clean my office/studio space out and my desk for sure.... it's a hot mess in there since I quit freelancing it's become a bit of a catch-all.

  • @sandicove2015 1 week

    HI!!!! I am so appreciative of you all! We are doing the thing!!!!!!
    Last year I started about 7 songs and finished 3. FAWM has been the way I have written very seriously. Last year, I had to learn Garage Band from scratch with an audio interface! So much to learn know and do! I did not know how to make my recordings into mp3s to share by the last day of FEB!! I barely got a few finished, but I have been prepping for FAWM this year by continuing to write, record and post on soundcloud.com/sandiland, (slo but sure) and for this FEB. I am going to finish last years rough starts before FEB 1 and also start the 14 for this year and maybe get them to turn around quickly. I am clearing the decks and honing my writing/recording schedule to match the accomplishment I want to make. - Getting into the habit of working 2 hours on then recovery times then back again. The more we do the more we can do. And mostly want to do it all for the joy and sharing hoping my songs become yours a

  • @sandicove2015 1 week

    And I know I wrote a lot for anyone to read! You have my apologies for the length. I will be more concise in FEB!!!!!!

  • @tsunamidaily 1 week

    i'm trying desperately to get my violin fixed so the top two strings will tune up to pitch without slipping. i had given it to a guy last year and it wasn't fixed. gave it back to him the other week, he "fixed" it and now it is back to slipping. he is stringing my autoharp as we speak, so i'm just going to ask if i need to take it to a music shop that specializes in band/orchestral instruments. i looked up the procedure on youtube and it basically involves putting some sort of gum on the peg to make it grip better, or actually roughening up the peg with some sandpaper, etc., so it has the texture to grip. but i'm not about to do it myself, so i'm thinking i need to move on after he tried twice. i have zero technique on the violin yet, but have some study books and a big old book of fiddle tunes for when i can do basic stuff. so i don't get to practice that this month-- bummer. i'm also getting the pickup in my ancient rickenbacher rewound, so i can use it next month. wish me luck!

  • @brrrse  1 week

    As I was cleaning up the production space, I found a brand new set of D'Addario strings for my sweet Breedlove acoustic guitar - restrung it - and oh my goodness - I've been playing on the wrong strings my whole life. Maybe I will do some guitar this FAWM.

  • @beat  1 week

    ... Shakin' me head 'n wondering, why in all heavens sake?

  • @beat  1 week

    @zecoop *]. No dust 'round ear...

  • @beat  1 week

    @cts tape mash, like in the ol' family car... when ya screamed from the back seat - NO! - the other one... and?
    Did anyone listen?
    ...

  • @beat  1 week

    @ustaknow *].

  • @beat  1 week

    @mdavisto the other way round would've been more interesting...
    way more...

  • @beat  1 week

    @adnama17 No

  • @beat  1 week

    @sw1n3flu *].

  • @bri4n 1 week

    Rushing through a music theory class on Udemy πŸ˜‰

  • @bethi 1 week

    Hey! First year fawmer here. I have a couple songs that a deadline might help me finish, but other than that I think I'll try and start blank slate and see what happens πŸ˜€

  • @quork  1 week

    @bethi ,welcome and happy song writing! What genre/s are your songs? There are lots of opportunities to collaborate, if you’re interested. And challenges to get the creative juices flowing, like β€œwrite a song using just one chord”. Fun times ahead.

  • @ayehahmur  6 days

    First time here too. I'm not planning on planning anything, just (like @bethi) going into it cold and hoping that the pressure of having to produce will make something happen. Every day.

  • @adnama17 6 days

    @beat, yup! Things are so much more interesting when I just fly by the seat of your pants. πŸ˜€

  • @andygetch  6 days

    the comment by @adnama17 reminds me of the seemingly annual 'planner or pantser' discussion on National Novel Writing Month (aka NaNoWriMo). A writing 'planner' comes up with a plot framework, does world building, develops character sketches, writes an outline of varying detail, research on the details of the time(s) and place(s) where the story is set, and pretty much does anything except write the actual lines and dialouge that will be in the story. Whereas the 'pantser' starts cold, just flies by the seat of the pants, and may even start all over mid-month. For songwriting challenges either writing process or a combination of the two applies, at least generally.
    I'm the hybrid type with the aforementioned overall themes and list of titles. I end up not using most of it and my plans in the past have changed significantly. This year I have a main theme and several sub-themes with about 20 title ideas.

  • @steviez  6 days

    Need to reclaim a lot of my studio space - Tabletop RPG crap takes up a LOT of room πŸ˜€ Also need to get out and tune up most of my instruments (including my DAW and my computer) and see if I remember how to play guitar! Warning my friends and family that I won't be around much in February.....Oh, and build up some callouses too - babysoft fingers don't get much done.

  • @standup  6 days

    Pants. Definitely pants. And all this computer security flaw crap means I should probably update my OS now and see how much of my current software will actually run, and try to get things running well by February.

  • @metalfoot  6 days

    It's funny, that while I usually "pants" NaNoWriMo, @andygetch, I usually have a well-articulated plan for FAWM. 50/90 I pants.

  • @andygetch  6 days

    @metalfoot very interesting, must be related to some type of cycle hmmmm....

  • @stevenwesleyguiles  6 days

    Ordered new FAWM swag (I went freaking NUTS this year and re-bought the gray zip up hoodie AND the rock hands t-shirt). πŸ˜€

    Also, recording music every day as much as I can to get my rock muscles in shape.

  • @cblack 5 days

    @andygetch and @metalfoot I switch between pantsing and plotting, depending on my mood. With writing, I've hit a happy medium where I plot to some extent, and then I just "know" that I'm ready to start writing, and pants from there. (With varying amounts of plotting.)

    Music? So far I've been pantsing 100%. I don't think my composition skills are high enough yet to plan ahead all that much.

  • @johncrossman 5 days

    I prepare with my usual pre-fawm jitters, paralysis and transitory terror followed by pep talks and head clearing music I would normally avoid. Oh and tuning up my ears to hear some great new fawm music from you all.

  • @brrrse  5 days

    I'm a plantser? 1st album of FAWM (there will probably be more than 2 this year - I got even MORE to say now) has lyrics and melodies with an idea of styles for each song. Taking it slower this year.

  • @cairobraga 4 days

    my fifth year, whoop whoop!

    I'm cooking an album idea I had in late 2017 that I intend to do this FAWM, and still delaying the actual process of making the one I wrote in FAWM 2014...

    but I've been mostly working on my temp day job, watching british panel and quiz TV shows like crazy, developing 8 radio show ideas, listening to Mecano's first album, listening to some music podcasts and watching TV while cuddling with the boyfriend.

  • @stevenwesleyguiles  4 days

    Organizing studio. Writing songs. Making some templates. Checking cables.

  • @kevinemmrich 4 days

    I believe that everyone, at least one time, owes it to themselves to come into FAWM with absolutely nothing! Having said that, I already have three potential ideas/chord progressions to try out on day 1. ... and having said that, I will probably do the day one skirmishes and forget all about those three starter tunes. I did get a looper (ditto x2) -- I don't know how that will fit it for fawm. Maybe I will video a song using the looper.

  • @rayboneor 4 days

    I just remembered that my interface box doesn't work and that I haven't changed guitar strings since FAWM 2017 at best, so those would be good places to start. Maybe I can work up some calluses in the next two weeks, too

  • @sw1n3flu  4 days

    @rayboneor sounds like a great plan!!! Good luck

  • @zecoop  4 days

    @kevinemmrich - That's what I do every year... and I recommend it too. I actually have recorded snippets ahead of time in past years that I was going to use but I never end up going back to them. πŸ˜€

  • @guatecoop  3 days

    I always go into Feb fresh. It scares the crap out of me every year, but it makes it really exciting. I've been organizing my recording things, trying to get Reaper working well on my new computer , and getting my instruments all ready to go. With the new computer, I somehow can't get my old plugins that I copied from my old computer to work on the new one...contemplating getting the everything bundle from Slate Audio for Feb to try it out....

  • @stuartbenbow  2 days

    My to do list involved tidying up my space, making a better work surface as a stand in for the console desk I really want to make, finishing recording/mixing the NSIE band's single, and getting the honey-do list cleared as much as I can. Actual album planning, not so much. I have a loose general concept, but that rarely survives the opening days.

  • @ignoreme 2 days

    Doing what I can now to make sure I have enough spare time in February to write as much as I can!

  • @scottlake 2 days

    setups all around for my guitars.

  • @aeye 2 days

    This is cool to see all the ways to get started. We've again sketched out our concept for the album and some track names. I think that helps in the long run since everything is mostly nailed down and we can just work on making the music sound like it should in the track titles.

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