It’s been a long year. Like, a long, stressful, kind of terrifying year. One thing I learned this year? I’d created all these amazing coping mechanisms to improve my mental health, like my weekly drum lessons and band practice. Guess what I couldn’t do once the pandemic hit in March? See other people in enclosed spaces. Like studios. So, there went all my beautiful coping mechanisms.

Luckily I was able to start doing remote music lessons with my drum instructor, replacing our in-person drum lessons. We’ve been going through the basics of music theory, composition, and mixing.

Once I started writing music, we progressed from some basic song forms:

“AABA” song form exercise from April

To rearranging songs:

“Costa del Sol” but like, jazzier or something, done in June and July

To finally, my first fully composed tune. I started working on this untitled lo-fi tune in early October, knocking out most of the chords and the melody within a day, along with a basic drum part, crackly vinyl, and vocals samples from an old radio show:

First draft of my lo-fi tune from early October

Then, I spent over a month going back and forth with my instructor each week, building up some additional parts, restructuring the drums and recording my own sounds to reinforce them, and lastly adding in a sampled sound effect to bring in some impact. Finally, Max mixed all the pieces together and we went over the various plugins and techniques he used to make it sound great.

Here’s the final tune. It’s the first full song I’ve written and for now, I’m pretty dang happy with it. Enjoy!

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