Skylines and the Horizon: A Journey With Too Many Beginnings

I’ve been trying to “seriously” record music since 2004 when I bought my first M-Audio USB preamp and the Shure SM57 that I still own 14 years later and sits on a desk waiting to be set up in front of an amp. Before that, I recorded music on my Tascam or Fostex 4-tracks using cassettes and fleshed out songs. Back then, I recorded as I practiced and sometimes stumbled upon something that I thought was really cool.

Whether it was in the comfort of my bedroom, office, or using someone else’s house, I’ve been learning new things about mic placement, track stacking, and mixing over the fourteen subsequent years. I feel like I’ve learned a lot but still know so very little.

I’ve recorded using an old solid state Fender Roc Pro 1000 head paired with old Sovtek 4×12 cab, boutique amps, to production tube amps. Like many guitarists, I pursued a tone that I’ll never be happy with, went through way too much money spent on far too many amps, and always seemed to be looking for something else.

I’ve also used guitars that range from an $85 Squier Stratocaster my grandmother bought for me in a pawnshop to a Paul Reed Smith that cost way too much money. We all do our best to find “the one” guitar that speaks to and sparks something within our soul from the first chord we play.

I’m not even going to get into the overwhelming world of guitar pedals. Goodness.

I love tinkering with and trying different combinations in order to try and capture the ever-elusive tone I have in my head. Needless to say, I could probably write a blog about the gear I’ve used, write a lot, and it’d be a drop in the bucket compared to the knowledge and gear that a lot of gear heads have on me.

I’ve only begun to capture tones that I feel content with. I keep pushing because for as much as I’ve tracked and recorded, I know so little when it comes to sound engineering.

Over the course of this blog, I’m going to discuss the journey of this particular group of songs on my first EP, Skylines and the Horizon, beginning with the my first serious attempts back when my wife and I lived in an apartment in Lewisville, TX.

These first entries will speak more towards the journey I went on, and while I might talk about some of the songs, I don’t plan to go into too much detail about them. While I don’t expect anyone to read this, if that expectation is somehow defied, I hope ou find it interesting, even if I talk about the technical side about how something was mic’d, the signal chain I used, or whatever else I might talk about.

Thank you for taking the time to peruse my posts.


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