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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

FP Update: 2-27-2013

Howdy All!

Lots to cover here so let's get down to it...

1) FP is writing a lot of new material right now. We've been unable to have full-blown band practices as often as we'd like due to crazy schedules and such...so on the weeks where the four of us can't all get together at the same time, whoever is available to get together usually spends the time writing new ideas and whatnot. We've been stockpiling the new song-starters by scratch-recording them as we go and it seems to be working quite well. We're all really excited about having new material on the horizon. Likely we'll focus on getting them to a 'recordable demo' stage and then polish them up to where we can start playing them for live outings. Plus that's a perfect way to test certain ideas versus spending serious studio time trying to sort out too many details while recording. But on the other hand, since we have our own studio set-up it's kind of a moot point how we go about it all... :-)

2) In spite of limited full-band rehearsals, we have 'Sycamore' probably 90% ready for live shows. So that means we'll have a five-song set of all originals ready here shortly. Also, another new song (one of the ones alluded to above) is something I've been calling "Again..." It's a 6/8 number that Robert started on his guitar last week during an impromptu writing session. Shortly after Robert and Jake headed home I started having a ton of solid lyric ideas and now I just need to wait for chorus lyrics/melody to float through my head, jot down a basic chord arrangement for the words, experiment with the guys on song dynamics, and voila we'll likely have a new song in our repertoire. Pretty sweet when things come easy...

3) I mentioned a few months ago that we were picked up by a big NYC-based Film/TV/Multimedia publishing house. Recently I've also been doing some side-work as a composer for a similar company that is based out of Singapore. That being said, one of the perks of doing freelance work for this new company is that they will likewise pick up any other material that I'd like to contribute for distribution through their networks. Of course everything is based on commission of sales, etc, but they are planning on expanding their distribution and publishing services on a much larger scale over the next 2-3 years. Needless to say it is pretty cool to know we'll have an East Coast distributor Stateside as well as another distributor on the opposite side of the planet. As such, the Singapore outfit is targeted more specifically at Bollywood/Hindi demographics, especially in India, Singapore, and parts of China. Got to love the fact that the world keeps getting smaller every day...

4) On a more personal note, I just recently wrapped up a series of guitar demos for Vibrance Guitars and you can now see all of the demo videos over at their YouTube Channel. Two of my personal instruments were also featured (for the sake of demonstrating the different tonal variations based on wood species, varying electronics, differing hardware, etc). My two guitars are serial #004 (an Ambrosia Double-Cut) and serial #007 (a Padauk Single-Cut). I've also added another Vibrance guitar to my collection, serial #021 (a Bubinga Double-Cut) that was also custom built for me by Craig Collins. We don't have any pics or videos of this particular guitar yet but it is quite amazing, and each Vibrance Guitar I own has its own unique personality. So much variety...and I'm really loving my rig these days. :-)

5) I also have a local Cigar Box Guitar maker, Ascendent Instruments, working on something special for me. If you don't know what a Cigar Box Guitar is (aka 'CBG'), it's simply a wooden cigar box that gets converted into a body for a make-shift guitar of various sorts. CBG's have been around for ages but they've seen a strong resurgence over the past few years and they are a real hoot to play. My CBG will have only three strings (aka a 'Three-Banger') without any frets on the fingerboard (my preference there), so I'll likely be playing a lot of slide stuff with it, but it will also be good for slippery sounding stuff with my fingers. It'll also have a hand-wound pick-up, a nice Luxe Bumblebee paper-in-oil capacitor in the tone knob circuit, and a kill-switch for chopping up my notes at the press of a button. I can't wait to start using this new CBG for upcoming FP stuff!

6) I still have a couple odds and ends to wrap up (as far as freelance stuff goes) and then I truly do hope to finish up the recordings for 'Rabbit Hole' and 'Getting Away'. Last year (2012) simply got away from me time-wise and I don't have any excuses for not getting these last two songs finished other than I've been spread out too thin with work-related stuff. That being said, it has been nice not having deadlines to fiddle with while still trying to pay the bills. We haven't thrown in the towel...we've just been pretty busy with life in general. Like I always say, it'll be worth the wait...

Hope everyone reading this is doing well in their corner of the world. We'll be in touch...

~ Todd

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