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Published December 23rd, 2013 at 10:00 am EST/EDT
firesongblog

“Departure” fits in well with the original “Cold September Ground” songs: It’s creepy as all get-out, and it has plenty of fantastic elements to it. It’s also about some popular media, like some of the other songs on this disc. But whereas “9 Lives”, the only other gaming song on “Faces in the Fog”, is more about gaming in general, “Departure” is about one specific game.

In 2008, Microsoft Game Studios released “Alan Wake“, a trippy psychological horror game with lots of good boogeyman-jumping-out-of-the-dark scares. The game follows the titular Alan Wake as he tries to find his wife and solve the mystery not only of her disappearance, but of the paranormal things occurring in the small town where they went for vacation. Over the course of the game, Alan finds pages for a novel he can’t remember writing. The contents of this novel are coming true in chilling ways. Gradually Alan figures out what’s going on in the town and how to save his wife. And somehow in the midst of all that, he comes to call his novel “Departure”.

There were some elements of the game I really enjoyed. The lore was interesting, the setting was fun, some of the mechanics were nifty, and much of the music was excellent. Beyond that…well, Yahtzee over at The Escapist made some pretty good points. It was especially brain-breaking how the character Alan Wake was supposedly a really talented author, but seemed to completely fail to understand basic writing devices such as proper punctuation and grammar, and how he was really fond of using passive voice and other really irritating things.

But, as I said, I really enjoyed the lore. If you’re at all familiar with my songwriting, you’ll know that lore—backstory, worldbuilding, mythology, folklore—gets my creative juices flowing better than just about anything else.

So I was watching my husband play “Alan Wake” one evening, and I got the chorus for this song stuck in my head. Massaging the verses out of my brain took a little while, partially because that’s just how my brain works, and partially because I had to wait for Sean to finish the game before I could finish the song. But don’t worry—there are no spoilers. If you’re still playing through the game like some of my friends are, I tried to write this song such that it would only make one hundred percent sense to someone who has played the game all the way through before…while still including enough of the story that it would be entertaining to someone who has never even heard of the game, much less played it. It’s a balancing act, and a fine like to walk. Here’s hoping I succeeded.


Departure
Lyrics and music by Katt McConnell

Truer words were never written than the ones on Cauldron Lake.
I know now that coming here was a terrible mistake.
We stepped into a game that we had no intent to play,
Now it’s up to you, my love, to try to find the way.        The way out – I want out.
       It began with a dream, but now nightmare holds us fast—
       She’ll trap us in the story until the very last.
       Never stop running, don’t believe what’s before your eyes
       When evil masquerades behind the most unsuspected guise…       I’m quite taken with you…

              Wake up, wake up
              There’s still time left to find me.
              Wake up, wake up,
              Break the darkness that binds me.
              There’s terror in the night that only you can burn away,
              And a path for us to both get back into the light of day,
              But only if you wake
              Wake up.

It swirls in vague uncertainty, the world beyond the deep,
Like shadows in the twilight, like a song you hear in sleep.
Yet somewhere in the rhythm of the play ‘twixt dark and light,
I sense you’re out there searching, and you won’t give up the fight.        Outside, there’s only darkness.
       You’re in the company of madmen, the ingenious, and deranged,
       Chasing down the talent from which you feel estranged,
       Yet everything that’s happened has come from words that are your own,
       And your self-appointed editor won’t leave well enough alone.        Keep going…

              Wake up, wake up
              There’s still time left to find me.
              Wake up, wake up,
              Break the darkness that binds me.
              There’s terror in the night that only you can burn away,
              And a path for us to both get back into the light of day,
              But only if you wake
              Wake up.

The threads that bind we two into the story as it flows
Are dark with ink and blood, both, and the further that it goes,
You’ll learn the truth and find the scars even Zane could not erase,
And somehow, one way or another, it’ll all click into place.        It seems like ages I’ve waited.
       It’s a puzzle you must solve to win and make the ending yours,
       Wherein lies the key to lock or unlock certain doors.
       Then when everything is said and done and day surpasses night,
       Find the balance in the darkness so that I can find the light.        It’s not a lake… It’s an ocean.

              Wake up, wake up
              Down the rabbit hole you’ll find me
              Wake up, wake up
              Don’t walk the road so blindly
              Beset upon by nightmare, you’re the man of my dreams,
              And I need you to fight for me, despite how hard it seems,
              So please, Wake…
              Wake up.



Published December 16th, 2013 at 10:00 am EST/EDT
firesongblog

“A Flame That Burns in Darkness”, like many of the “Cold September Ground” songs, is something I originally wrote in high school. Unlike those songs, however, this version has not only been completely rewritten, but completely reimagined. The ideas behind “Wet Velvet” and “Jack the Ripper” are still pretty much the same as they used to be. But this song, like “Cold September Ground”, has turned into something altogether different.

“A Flame That Burns in Darkness” was originally my attempt at a poignant, sad spacer song. …you can probably infer how well I pulled it off by the fact that I ripped the title from that concept and stuck it onto something that is not in any way related to space.

Also, fun fact: Back in high school, I made my first attempt at recording my own album. It didn’t work out, but that album was titled “A Flame That Burns in Darkness”, and the original version of this song was to be the title track. The tune for the original was another Deanna Roberts-Blair creation (“Kiss Me, Jak Frost”, “Jack the Ripper”), and part of the cover art is now the Firesong Productions logo. (That was drawn by my good friend Rebecca Appelbaum, by the way. She’s amazing.)

Instead of space, this new song is instead based on Grecian mythology. When I wrote this version, I had no intention for it to bear this name. I was just writing on a bit of an idea I’d had—an idea that came out a bit more freeform than how I usually write, and I was thus not sure it would ever be able to become a song. After playing with things a bit, I was able to write this, and I’m very happy with how it turned out.

And yes, it’s pretty morbid, but it does have a good message: Do all with your life that you could wish, and be kind to one another.


A Flame That Burns in Darkness
Lyrics and music by Katt McConnell

I am the flame in the lantern
On the boat that ferries you across
The woeful river.
I light the way into the true
Great Unknown.
I glow in the darkness as you all
Huddle on the deck together
And the currents draw you
Farther from home.

I illuminate the gateway
That prevents your passage backward
Through the veil.
I am the note you leave your loved ones
Who follow after,
The only glimmer of hope you can give
That you know will never fail,
That where they find themselves next
Will be filled with light and laughter.

       But don’t seek my compassion,
       It doesn’t work that way.
       I’m only what you make of me.
       That’s just the part I play.

I am witness to your uncertainty,
Your reluctant shuffling off,
Your lacking of choice.
Bound into a plan you can’t control
And have no say in,
Your shock isn’t that it’s over,
But that you suddenly have no voice.
You’re so used to having your say,
But now there’s no way you can weigh in.

No matter your status in life,
All of you are equal on
The River.
Know that I won’t remember you once
You disembark.
Does the thought that you are forgettable
Make your skin crawl, make you shiver?
Well only those with reason to be
Are fearful of the dark.

       So don’t seek my compassion,
       It doesn’t work that way.
       I’m only what you make of me.
       That’s just the part I play.

What was the kind of life you led?
In your agency, were you cruel,
Kind, or devout?
When you had control, what did
You use it for?
You seem to me to be the kind
That used your power and clout
To take your fair share
And much more.

Now on the doorstep of the next world,
You find that for the first time
You must learn
What it’s like to tell something precious
Goodbye.
And you seek to warm hands that aren’t cold
Over fire that doesn’t burn,
To assuage your terror now that
You find all your power was a lie.

       Don’t seek my compassion,
       It doesn’t work that way.
       I’m only what you make of me.
       That’s just the part I play.

       That’s just the part I play.



Published December 9th, 2013 at 10:00 am EST/EDT
firesongblog

A couple of years ago, I went to a friend’s house and she showed Sean and me the movie “Coraline“. Produced by Laika, this stop-motion animated film had it all: A beautiful original score, talented voice acting, masterful animation, beautiful shot and art direction, and oh yeah, it was based on a story written by Neil Gaiman. The movie has some differences from the story (because of course), but it is one of my most favorite things ever. And I can really, really relate to Coraline’s relationship with her parents.

In the movie, they never examine the Ghost Children’s backgrounds, and in the book, the Ghost Children are completely different. So I sort of had to take some liberties to write this song, but I did base the verses off the apparent time periods of the movie Ghost Children. As she’s babbling to the character Wybie, Coraline describes the Ghost Children as “…this pioneer girl, then Huck Finn Jr., then it was this Little Rascals chick…” So given that information, I guessed.

The first girl would have come west on the Oregon Trail, most likely, which is well-known for being fraught with peril. (In case you missed it, that reference was a joke, but seriously, the Oregon Trail was no picnic.)

The boy I figured might have been born to a father who was a lumberjack, and possibly, due to difficult times or just a naturally mean demeanor, abusive. I can see a little boy yearning for escapism like that provided by the Other Mother because of such a scenario. And this might be more of a modern-day train of thought, but how many rough, tough, burly men do you know that are comfortable with their sons playing with dolls?

And the third ghost was likely growing up during the Great Depression. That’s definitely cause for wanting some escapism right there. She might have been too young to fully understand what was going on (“And an odd, malignant misery”), but children are very perceptive.

This song came for me while I was at work one day. It was one of those that came tumbling out of my head. It was just in time for Halloween in 2012. There’s a recording of it up on Wax Chaotic’s ReverbNation profile from a concert we performed in December of 2012. The keyboard voice was chosen because it sounded sort of like a music box, and that seemed wholly appropriate.

I love this song. And yes, apparently I think that breathing is for wimps.


Hush and Shush
Lyrics and music by Katt McConnell

She sells you pretty promises
With wonders, treats, and games galore,
Knowing no matter how she gives,
That you’ll always want more.
A treat my father thought he found
Turned out to be a spy,
And they only know I disappeared—
But they’ll never know why.

I admit that I was foolish,
But the journey West was hard—
My mother and two brothers
Didn’t make it quite this far.
I yearned to find a perfect world,
But didn’t factor in the cost,
Then I took the chance to reunite
With loved ones I had lost.

       Hush and shush
       Or the Beldam will hear you—
       You’re a fly in her web,
       Don’t let her come near you
       With her needle and thread,
       Don’t believe what she’s said,
       And don’t let her sew the buttons
       Like we did.

Between the pines and firs
And the redwoods grown for centuries,
I played at war with other boys,
And pushed against my boundaries.
It wasn’t quite refusal
To follow given rules,
It was more of an escape route
From a father cold and cruel.

Then I found myself revealing
An escape that was quite different,
And to my great joy and delight,
She said it could be permanent.
I don’t recall my name,
But here, behind the mirrored glass,
I remember my true mommy
And wonder how she is.

       Hush and shush
       Or the Beldam will hear you—
       You’re a fly in her web,
       Don’t let her come near you
       With her needle and thread,
       Don’t believe what she’s said,
       And don’t let her sew the buttons
       Like we did.

I grew up in misty mountains
Where the rain is filled with mystery,
With my parents and my sister—
And an odd, malignant misery.
I had imagination,
And not a whole lot more,
Until I found the world of wonder
Through that tiny, wooden door.

I was trapped just like the others,
And like them, I yearn to run,
But we cannot leave this prison world
Until our favor’s done.
Oh, find us, girl, and free us fast,
And we’ll help get you home,
And be smart, for even if you win,
She’ll never let you go.

       Hush and shush
       Or the Beldam will hear you—
       You’re a fly in her web,
       Don’t let her come near you
       With her needle and thread,
       Don’t believe what she’s said,
       And don’t let her sew the buttons
       Like we did.

       Hush and shush, Mistress,
       Hush and shush, Mistress,
       Hush and shush…shhh…



Published December 2nd, 2013 at 10:00 am EST/EDT
firesongblog

As I announced in August, Dragon Scale Studios’ next big project is a dual album endeavor. The first album we’re working is called “Faces in the Fog”, and will contain all of the tracks from “Cold September Ground”, our first project, completely re-recorded, re-mixed, re-mastered, and in some cases, even re-arranged, as well as six brand new tracks from which the work draws its name. We’re thinking of these six new tracks as an EP, so when combined with the “Cold September Ground” content, the end result is something altogether different.

Creating the production notes posts for “Cold September Ground” was a lot of fun, and gave me a chance not only to talk about the process of creating each track, but also allowed me to share the lyrics and the songs’ backgrounds prior to publication. I have decided, therefore, so continue doing production notes posts for “Faces in the Fog”, and then for “[untitled]“, which is the second album that will be part of this dual release.

I’ve already gone in-depth with the original “Cold September Ground” tracks, so those will not be covered in this series. To learn about them, look them up under the “Cold September Ground” production notes tag. Obviously since we’re re-recording everything, the process will be somewhat different this time around, but I don’t think that I need to go into great detail for every single one of those songs. Plus the lyrics and the inspiration behind them have already been described.

Instead, we’re going to start this series next week with a post about “Hush and Shush”, track 14 on “Faces in the Fog”.



Published October 31st, 2013 at 6:15 pm EST/EDT
firesongblog

The idea of fractured fairy tales has been on my mind a lot recently for a number of reasons. First, it’s Halloween. Second, the Iron Filker challenge at this year’s OVFF was “Fractured Fairy Tales”. And third, well, I’m just like that.

People have been doing a lot of interesting and wonderful things with a lot of the classic “princess” stories–some friends of mine placed second in the main songwriting contest at OVFF with a song called, “Snow White, Red Road”, that is just all sorts of nifty and delicious and I want a recording of it yesterday.

There are also a lot of different re-tellings of “Little Red Riding Hood” out there (that again, are made of deliciousness), so I was thinking earlier today about what story I might want to retell. And how. I wanted to play with one that I haven’t seen a lot of people mess with yet. This is what came out, though honestly the original itself is pretty damn disturbing anyway (but then that’s par for the course for fairy tales).

I don’t normally share things right after I’ve written them (and this is about as fresh as they get, folks) but it’s Halloween, so why the hell not.

Also, I sense another album project formulating…

(Apologies if this makes anyone hungry.)


Gingerbread Witchcraft
Lyrics and music by Katt McConnell

Hans and Greta went walking one day,
Into the forest, where the junipers grow.
With a trail of breadcrumbs to vouchsafe their way,
They delved into glens where even woodsmen don’t go.

The daylight grew thin and the hour grew late,
But their breadcrumbs went missing—filched by the crows.
They were lost and hungry and full of fright,
When they found a strange cottage with its windows aglow.

Smoke spiraled up from a chimney of stone,
Carrying with it the scent of gingerbread.
They thought surely an adult wouldn’t leave them outside alone,
So they knocked on the door in search of a bed.

       And her door opened up to the night.
       She saw their tears and said, “It’ll be all right.
       Come in, little lostlings, I’ll see that you’re fed,
       And for dessert, I’m making gingerbread.”

Hans and Greta, now cozy and warm,
Listened to the stories of their generous host.
She told them of sunshine, she told them of storm,
But the tales of magic were what Greta liked most.

The woman was keen to see that response,
And told Greta more stories as Hans fell asleep.
She hinted at the power that grips and that haunts,
And that witches are dangerous company to keep…

She sent Greta to bed well into the night,
Though Greta could have listened to her tales until dawn.
The woman just smiled and tucked her in tight,
As Greta said goodnight with a yawn.

       And stories set in motion a tempest
       That whirled even with her at rest.
       And she lay asleep, dreaming in bed,
       In linens that smelled of gingerbread.

Hans and Greta awoke with the sun,
With Hans unaware that the world had ended.
For his sister, a new life had begun
Thanks to the stranger whom they befriended.

In the daylight, the children found their way home,
And their father was thankful to see them return.
But Greta was captured and compelled to roam
Back to the cottage where the magic burned.

Hans warned their father that something was wrong—
After that visit, Greta wasn’t the same.
He said Greta shouldn’t stay away for so long…
But his father looked perplexed at hearing her name…

       [bridge]

Now they sing as they mix in the flour and eggs,
They laugh at how life might have turned out instead.
They pour out the mixture, scrape out the dregs,
And fill the forest with the scent of gingerbread.

       There is magic in the simple things,
       In the sifting of flour, in the way that smoke stings,
       To darken the moon or waken the dead,
       There is magic in the smell of gingerbread.

       Warm, spicy, gingerbread…



Published October 12th, 2013 at 12:34 pm EST/EDT
firesongblog

Hey, folks! This is just to warn you that with work steadily progressing on the dual album project, I’ve decided that some things need to change on this blog. Mostly this will involve my going through the back entries and changing things that shouldn’t affect anyone but me, but one big thing that’s going to happen is that I intend to change how this blog is located in my server-side organization. Instead of being part of the firesongproductions.com domain, it’s going to be moved under the dragonscalestudios.com domain. This will affect any links and bookmarks. I doubt this will matter to anyone but me, but I wanted to put the warning out there just in case.

And maybe one of these years I’ll finally get around to updating the design of this damn thing…



Published September 23rd, 2013 at 10:00 am EST/EDT
firesongblog

A reminder, Wax Chaotic is currently running a fundraiser for our 2014 tour. Several of our rewards involve studio recordings of new songs, and as this is the studio that will be producing those recordings, I thought I would share the lyrics for those new songs.

The songs we’re offering at various reward levels are:

“In Another Castle” and “Bridge” are currently available for your listening pleasure on YouTube, and the lyrics were posted with their videos. So here are the lyrics for “MWAHAHAHA!”.


We Are Filkers
Lyrics and music by Katt McConnell

I’ve loved making music ever since I was a tot,
And I’m no Julie Andrews, but I think I do all right.
I lucked into a fannish family of sympathetic thought—
We stay up making music well into the night.
But I think that I was sheltered in those bardic rings.
I never realized “filk” is a four-letter word.
Some folks are really rude (not to mention other things),
Like it’s not a viable way to be a nerd.

I see some geek musicians with their noses in the air,
Insulted when they are filkers named.
“Filkers aren’t musicians!” they stubbornly declare,
So…ok. Sure. Let’s play that little game.

       We
       Are
       Filkers,
       And we’re just wannabes.
       Our talent lies in
       Pretending we’re real musicians.
       We
       Are
       Filkers,
       We take ourselves too seriously—
       We’re freakish upstarts
       With way too much ambition.

Warning: Names have been changed to protect the awesome.

Kelley is a teacher at university.
Her first love was music, at an early age.
She has a Doctorate of Musicology,
And has never felt awkward on a stage.
She has perfect pitch and loves to sing,
She keeps time better than a metronome,
And one of her most favorite things
Is hosting bardics at her home.

She’s a massive of fan of fantastic fiction,
And dragons are her favorite mythic beast.
You may find all this incongruous,
But it isn’t that uncommon in the least!

        ‘Cause we
       Are
       Filkers,
       And we’re just wannabes.
       Our talent lies in
       Pretending we’re real musicians.
       We
       Are
       Filkers,
       We take ourselves too seriously—
       We’re freakish upstarts
       With way too much ambition.

Andrew got his first guitar at the tender age of seven,
Now he’s played for almost thirty years.
Instrument stores are little bits of heaven,
And what he does on his guitar would reduce you to tears.
When his day job’s schedule allows,
He makes the rounds to all the filk cons.
He loves the closeness filking endows
So much stays in circle until dawn.

He has two collections of which he’s very proud:
Instruments, and novels set in space.
He’d have a hundred more of each if his house allowed,
So with filkers, he’s never out of place.

       We
       Are
       Filkers,
       And we’re just wannabes.
       Our talent lies in
       Pretending we’re real musicians.
       We
       Are
       Filkers,
       We take ourselves too seriously—
       We’re freakish upstarts
       With way too much ambition.

Nancy’s been a filker since 1982
When a cousin took her to a bardic ring.
After that first evening, she knew this love was true,
And since then she’s been hosting her own ‘sings.
She doesn’t play an instrument, she can’t hold a tune,
But she has a passion for the music all the same.
Talent’s not the point, though others may impugn;
There’s always different ways to play a game.

So before you write us off, I still have this to say,
And I hope that you’ll stop making this mistake:
Musicianship is not about how well you play,
It’s about how much you love the music that you make.

       Yes, we
       Are
       Filkers,
       And guess what? So are you!
       If you sing songs of
       Science-fiction or fantasy.
       We
       Are
       Filkers,
       We’re musicians, too,
       And…like it or not…
       We’re all part
       Of one big family.


This song is filled with pure, unabashed snark. I wrote it in response to a very annoying and sadly pervasive attitude within the fannish community, present not only among non-musicians, but also among those who are musically inclined. As it says in the song, “filk” is apparently a four-letter word in certain areas. (For those who don’t know, “filk” is essentially the folk music of science-fiction and fantasy fandom, but it can and does span multiple genres).

Filkers are viewed negatively because there are many of us who, to borrow a line, sing without a voice. I have talked before about how I feel about the opinion that those who cannot sing well, shouldn’t sing at all. If a filker isn’t talented enough to conceivably go pro, then they’re not allowed to enjoy performing—they’re an embarrassment to fandom, so let’s just sweep them under the carpet and get them out of the way.

Also, anyone who identifies as a filker is, by association, not a real musician and therefore couldn’t possibly have any talent to speak of. And there are many professional fannish musicians who turn somersaults to avoid being associated with filk and filkers because, well, they are real musicians, thank you very much.

Both of these ideas are, if you’ll pardon my language, complete and utter bullshit. Some of the most talented musicians I have ever heard are filkers. And some of the best musicians I have ever had the privilege of sharing space with couldn’t hold a tune in a bucket—but like the song says, talent isn’t the point. Music is the point. And I think that some of the people who inspired this song would do well to remember that.

This song is also available on the thumb drive introduced at the “Over the Border” package.



Published September 16th, 2013 at 10:00 am EST/EDT
firesongblog

A reminder, Wax Chaotic is currently running a fundraiser for our 2014 tour. Several of our rewards involve studio recordings of new songs, and as this is the studio that will be producing those recordings, I thought I would share the lyrics for those new songs.

The songs we’re offering at various reward levels are:

“In Another Castle” and “Bridge” are currently available for your listening pleasure on YouTube, and the lyrics were posted with their videos. So here are the lyrics for “Coat of Scars”.


Coat of Scars
Lyrics and music by Katt McConnell

       I have scars.
       They’re pictures only I can see
       Drawn in fine lines like the roots of a tree,
       They braid with the timeline ‘til they
       Look like me
       I can never,
       Don’t know if I want to be
       Free
       From my scars.

There’s a mass of tangled lines…
If you squint, you’ll see traces of
Careworn and loveable faces—
Look harder and you’ll see the signs
Of the architects behind my façade.
They take and they scheme,
They think this is chess, and I, the pawn,
Without realizing I’ve begun to move on—
Freedom is my greatest dream.
And they are the stuff of which nightmares are made.

       I have scars.
       They’re pictures only I can see
       Drawn in fine lines like the roots of a tree,
       They braid with the timeline ‘til they
       Look like me
       I can never,
       Don’t know if I want to be
       Free
       From my scars.

Some scars hide under the skin…
We all know from school
Our fellows can be so cruel,
And some games we never can win
When those in charge set us up to fail.
These scars fade more each day,
But still, they contribute to who I am.
I still can’t quite understand
Why we treat each other that way,
And why kindness does not prevail.

       I have scars.
       They’re pictures only I can see
       Drawn in fine lines like the roots of a tree,
       They braid with the timeline ‘til they
       Look like me
       I can never,
       Don’t know if I want to be
       Free
       From my scars.

I’ve drawn many lines of my own…
I ignore intuition
And forego all inhibition—
My mistakes cut me right to the bone,
And all too often haunt me at night.
Regret is a dangerous game.
Sometimes it’s hard not to dwell;
Obsessing only creates a living hell.
I’m drawn like a moth to a flame—
I try to release instead and take flight.

       I have scars.
       They’re pictures only I can see
       Drawn in fine lines like the roots of a tree,
       They braid with the timeline ‘til they
       Look like me
       I can never,
       Don’t know if I want to be
       Free
       From my scars.

Now see the other side of the coin:
When the storm has been weathered,
Our strength and our mettle are tempered,
And we can much better enjoin
Our fears to lose their control.
This is how we learn,
Through failure and pain we can grow,
To rise high, we must start off low—
And reborn from that in which we burn,
We find ourselves a little closer to whole.

       I have scars.
       They’re pictures only I can see
       Drawn in fine lines like the roots of a tree,
       They braid with the timeline ‘til they
       Look like me
       I can never,
       Don’t know if I want to be
       Free
       From my scars.

               I know they won’t likely erase,
               That they’re part of my very being.
               But I temper them by seeing
               Where their root lines have left a trace.
               The lines are all here,
               Scattered and clear,
               Upon my

       Coat of scars.
       They’re pictures only I can see
       Drawn in fine lines like the roots of a tree,
       They braided with the timeline ‘til they
       Looked like me
       I can never,
       Don’t know if I want to be
       Free
       From my scars.


This song is ultimately bound for inclusion on “[untitled]“. It is perhaps one of the most personal things I have ever written. It is also an attempt for me to examine some negative aspects in my life while at the same time acknowledging that, while negative, they are completely necessary. I would not be the person I am today without having been all those people before, and having gone through all the things I’ve been through. And overall, I’m usually pretty happy with the person I am right now. There are two sides to every coin. This is my effort to express appreciation for the darker side.

This song is available on a Wax Chaotic branded thumb drive starting at the “Over the Border” package, along with four other studio recordings of unreleased songs.



Published September 8th, 2013 at 8:48 pm EST/EDT
firesongblog

Wax Chaotic is currently running a fundraiser for our 2014 tour. Several of our rewards involve studio recordings of new songs, and as this is the studio that will be producing those recordings, I thought I would share the lyrics for those new songs.

The songs we’re offering at various reward levels are:

  • In Another Castle
  • MWAHAHAHA!
  • Coat of Scars
  • We are Filkers
  • Bridge
  • From Steel

“In Another Castle” and “Bridge” are currently available for your listening pleasure on YouTube, and the lyrics were posted with their videos. So here are the lyrics for “MWAHAHAHA!”.


MWAHAHAHA!
Lyrics and music by Katt McConnell

Thanks to the media, no one takes me seriously—
I can threaten, I can intimidate, but they just grin their stupid grins.
I’m tired of my reputation being marred so egregiously,
And I’m sick of how the bad guy never wins.

If I had a dollar for every mocking laugh,
Then oh, what an army of minions I could raise!
If you think you’ve got it bad, then you don’t know the half
Of it, ‘cause it’s not easy being an evil genius these days.

So I set about to prove that I’m comic villain bad,
And there’ve been a few—erm, roadblocks—on the way.
The burn marks are all gone now (mostly), and while that’s pretty rad,
I’m still working on my self-esteem as I say…

       MWAHAHAHA
       On my way down the
               Hidden stair—
       MWAHAHAHA
       To the projects that a-
               Wait me there.
       It’s clear to me
       My victory
       Will happen just as planned—
       They laugh and write me off,
       But should know better than to scoff—
       What part of
       MWAHAHAHA
       Don’t they understand?

“Money is power”, or at least that’s what they say,
So I spent several months planning for a major bank withdrawal.
Getting in, I knew, would for me be child’s play,
Thanks to this nifty gizmo I made that lets me walk through walls.

In retrospect, I should have fully tested it—instead, I jumped the gun,
And found myself not in the vault, but an alternate reality.
So far it hasn’t proven true two heads are better than one,
But maybe that’s because the second belongs to another me.

Thank evil I’ve got brains—who needs experience?—
At least I’m never plagued by guys in spandex underpants.
If I can only overcome my own incompetence,
Then maybe someday I’ll have half a chance.

       MWAHAHAHA
       On my way down the
               Hidden stair—
       MWAHAHAHA
       To the projects that a-
               Wait me there.
       It’s clear to me
       My victory
       Will happen just as planned—
       They laugh and write me off,
       But should know better than to scoff—
       What part of
       MWAHAHAHA
       Don’t they understand?

There was a time I worked to hold a monument for ransom,
Thinking surely that would be a way to put myself in power.
I gave them my demands and stood outside the Louvre, within each hand some
Nozzles that would blast the thing, and gave the world an hour.

Helicopters cordoned off the sky, while police were on the ground.
Members of the fourth estate tried to observe my every move.
All was going well, despite my timer counting down,
And if I didn’t win, well, at least my true nature I could prove.

Finally the word came down—quel suprise, they thought I was a joke.
I hit the switches on my cannons, ready to realize my dreams.
But what happened afterward was only ridicule and smoke…
…yeah, you don’t want to know what happened when I crossed the streams.

       But still I say
       MWAHAHAHA
       On my way down the
               Hidden stair—
       MWAHAHAHA
       To the projects that a-
               Wait me there.
       It’s clear to me
       My victory
       Will happen just as planned—
       They laugh and write me off,
       But should know better than to scoff—
       What part of
       MWAHAHAHA
       Don’t they understand?

Once I set about to terrorize New York City with a ray
That would allow me to control anyone I fired it upon.
I dreamed of city officials doing anything I’d say,
Thus at long last ushering in my new world order’s dawn.

In tests, the gadget worked without a hitch! …on mice…
But the human brain is more complex than those of lesser creatures.
So for now I’ve put my mind control ray on ice
Until I can add to it a few more…helpful…features.

But I’m learning from my failures, and this one particularly,
Though I’ll never forgive myself for the havoc I set free.
It’s not hard to see the flaws when they’re viewed lenticularly,
But it figures I’d be behind the world’s fascination with reality TV.

…that’s kind of evil, right?

       And I say
       MWAHAHAHA
       On my way down the
               Hidden stair—
       MWAHAHAHA
       To the projects that a-
               Wait me there.
       It’s clear to me
       My victory
       Will happen just as planned—
       They laugh and write me off,
       But should know better than to scoff—
       What part of
       MWAHAHAHA
       Don’t they understand?

I’ve been resisting the urge to build a time machine
And travel forward in it to go ask myself some things.
I’d really like to know what “keep it simple, stupid” means,
But mostly I just want to see myself be King.

Or maybe I’d call myself Emperor. No, I know! Her Grand High and Mightiness, Ruler of the World and All Her Satellites, Enslaver of Mankind, Supreme Evil Genius Extraordinaire, Master of All She Surveys, Empress of All Things Chocolate, Supreme Monarch of the—

Guitarist: AHEM!

—right, sorry.

But anyway, it’s back to work at the good ol’ the drawing board—
I’ve a deadline to meet, and I’m running out of time.
I’ll give good use to all the data that the NSA has stored,
‘Cause I’m the only one who should be the next Napoleon of Crime!

(I bet he didn’t have OSHA breathing down his neck…)

Soon it will be time to unveil my latest creation—
All it needs is one last little test.
I’m keeping my fingers crossed it won’t lead to my own cremation—
Yes, it’d be nice if this one were more stable than the rest.

       And still I say
       MWAHAHAHA
       On my way down the
               Hidden stair—
       MWAHAHAHA
       To the projects that a-
               Wait me there.
       It’s clear to me
       My victory
       Will happen just as planned—
       They laugh and write me off,
       But should know better than to scoff—
       What part of
       MWAHAHAHA
       Don’t they understand?


This is intended to be a singalong, or laughalong if you will. There are twenty opportunities available, at time of writing, for you guys to send in your best evil laugh for inclusion on the studio recording of this track. I don’t often write things that are funny, so I’m really excited to get this song out into the world, and I’d love it if some of you joined me in getting it out there. The opportunity to participate in this track is available at the appropriately-named “Mad Scientist’s Convention” level, which is set at $50 and also comes with a free download of the finished track.

So practice your evil laugh (because that’s about standards, really), and join the Mad Scientist’s Convention!



Published August 22nd, 2013 at 12:11 pm EST/EDT
firesongblog

No, we’re not starting that again. Ye gods.

But the promotion was named after the blog tag, and now I need to use the blog tag again.

Yesterday, a lovely lady by the name of S.J. Tucker posted some lyrics to her Facebook page, and due to the overwhelming response to them, she thought she’d run a contest based on them. I am not really intending to enter the contest, necessarily, but I did want to run this song of mine by her to make sure my inclusion of the titular phrase from her song was kosher. Though I guess this did rather inadvertently turn into a follow-up for “Little Bird”.

I’ve had the idea for this song for two years. It is a direct follow-up to “[untitled]“, and it’s been gestating for a while. Yesterday, it finally came spilling out of my head. I love it. It is what I hoped it would be, and it’s definitely got stuff in it I know I’ve needed to hear (a lot of which I’ve been actively trying to keep in mind for the last few years…especially the stuff about patience). So here is my not-entry to the “Little Bird” contest.

I’m glad this one finally came out of hiding.


Trust the Road
Lyrics and music by Katt McConnell

“Come here, Little Bird,”
       Said the Vagabond Matron,
       ”Answer me this question:

“To find what you seek
       On the road you’ve been walking,
       Would you pay heed to this lesson?

“I am the Keeper of
       Pathways and Journeys,
       And all roads that wander through life.

“I am the bringer of wisdom
       And courage to those
       Who would march to my fife.

“The road is a mistress
       Best not taken lightly,
       But set foot out your door and you’ll find

“A life more enriching
       Than one spent in comfort,
       Where complacency deadens the mind.

              ”Whatever you wish to find on your journey,
              Whatever it adds to your load,
              Take to your heart this lesson, Little Bird:
              Wherever it leads you, trust the road.

“So weary you are,
       So footsore and road worn—
       When was the last time you rested?

“Take care, for my byways
       Are where courage is tempered
       And the mettle of dreams is tested.

“I could tell you which fork
       Leads to which destination,
       And speed up the trip that you’re taking.

“But then you’d miss out
       On the joys and the mystery
       Of the story that you’re the one making.

“Don’t be so impatient
       To arrive at the outcome
       That you miss all the sights on the way.

“Don’t fret if you find the road
       Ahead of you blocked for a time,
       Or if something should lead you astray.

              ”Whatever you wish to find on your journey,
              Whatever it adds to your load,
              Take to your heart this lesson, Little Bird:
              Wherever it leads you, trust the road.

“If you find yourself walking
       A stretch cracked and pitted,
       Remember, Little Bird, don’t despair,

“But take heed of the lessons
       Presented as pitfalls
       That you will find here and there.

“Remember to dance,
       Remember to sing,
       Remember the joy of the journey.

“Remember that patience
       Is as valued as ardor,
       And that sometimes, it’s best not to worry.

“While you are pursuing
       What glory calls to your soul,
       Don’t get lost in where you aren’t yet.

“There is merit in walking
       Every step of the road,
       So, Little Bird, don’t forget

              ”That whatever you wish to find on your journey,
              Whatever it adds to your load,
              Take to your heart this lesson, Little Bird:
              Wherever it leads you, trust the road.”



Published August 5th, 2013 at 7:06 pm EST/EDT
firesongblog

Whew. The Lyrics Dump Promotion is finally over. Well, ok, almost. Seven of the nine songs are recorded and released. Soon it will be time for a brea—

Nerts to that, time for the next project.

I mentioned that my next project would actually be TWO albums, and that is still very much the plan. Now that I’ve gotten a few kinks worked out, it’s time for the big reveal—what albums I’m going to be doing next, and what songs will be on them. The first one involves some old, familiar friends.

Album Name: Faces in the Fog

Track List

  1. Cold September Ground
  2. Kiss Me, Jak Frost
  3. The Garden
  4. Fall from Grace
  5. Runaway
  6. The Stallion and the Rose: The Choice
  7. By Blood
  8. Wet Velvet
  9. Jack the Ripper
  10. Stepping Stones
  11. The Stallion and the Rose: The Debt
  12. The Singing of Dragons
  13. 9 Lives
  14. Departure
  15. Hush and Shush
  16. A Flame that Burns in Darkness
  17. Gray One
  18. A Long Walk
  19. Faerie Dreams

If you’re noticing that a lot of that first one looks familiar, there’s a good reason for that. See, I made “Cold September Ground” sorta backwards. I made it before I knew what I was doing, for one, and I made it before I knew if anyone would really be interested in it. Well, people are. In fact, by my standards, people are pretty damn interested (you’ve all given me cause to keep making music, so I consider that pretty damn interested). There are things I wanted to do the first time around that I wasn’t able to do partially because of a lack of experience, but also because of a lack of time. CSG was a student project. I had to have it finished by a certain date in order to graduate from college. Now that I’m all graduated ‘n stuff, I wanted to take another crack at it. I didn’t do as well on it as I could have, and it’s actually made me kinda sad.

The CSG content will not be remixes. They will be entirely new recordings. What’s more, most of them will also have extra things thrown into the arrangements, if I have my way. For example: I originally wanted a violin part in “Jack the Ripper”. That wasn’t possible the first time around. Another example: The lead accompaniment in “9 Lives” was intended to be a chiptune. That also wasn’t possible. This time around, I can add in all that nifty stuff that didn’t make it into the final cuts the first time.

The reason why this album will be called “Faces in the Fog” and not something like “Cold September Ground Version 2.0″ is because of six additional tracks at the end that are essentially an EP. These are all new, though we’ve been doing “Hush and Shush” at Wax Chaotic concerts for some time. They still fit the theme of the original album, though, so I think they’ll work in nicely.

This redux/EP combo is actually the reason why I intend to do two albums at the same time. I’d feel kinda shitty if my next effort was essentially my first effort, just with some extra stuff thrown in (even if it’s lots of extra stuff, as I intend it to be). But I’d really like to get this one done. I do hope you all will bear with me.

Now for the next one.

Album Name: [untitled]

Track List

  1. Cracked
  2. Weekend Job
  3. Pixie Smile
  4. Wild Hair Time
  5. Buttons
  6. Lost Girls
  7. Hand-Me-Downs
  8. Coat of Scars
  9. Partners in Crime
  10. In a Hundred Different Ways
  11. Break Out
  12. Getting Lost
  13. Tapestry of Me
  14. [untitled]

This one is a heckuva lot different from the other one. Its theme is, “Where I’ve been, where I am, and where I’m going”. It’s a lot more personal, and it’s something I need to get out. You’ll note that some of these songs were actually part of the Lyrics Dump Promotion, but there’s plenty of new content where those came from.

It has been suggested that I shouldn’t call this album “[untitled]” and simply leave it at that, that I should instead conceive a more descriptive name for it. But “[untitled]” is its name. The title track is the only one that fits into the category “Where I’m going”, and those of you familiar with the song will already be aware that it is one gigantic question mark. It is not more defined because I was not more defined when I wrote it, and this entire album is a much more personal and specific reflection of me than most of my other work. It is about history and questions and laughter and no few scars. It is me, laid open, picked apart by poetry, and threaded through melody. It is a journey through the Self. And I can’t wait to share it with you all.

Please note that with the exception of the CSG tracks, which I wish to keep in their original order, the track order of the EP and of “[untitled]” is still subject to change. I’ve put a lot of thought into the songs themselves, though, and so I feel pretty confident that this is what will be on each album. But I must confess that at least half of the material on “[untitled]” hasn’t been written yet. The ideas are clear enough in my mind that I could put names to them, but I’m still working on detailing the specifics.

Sean and I are going to be laying down the initial tracks for things around our practice and performance schedule, and we’re going to start in September. I’m hoping to have both of these albums ready to print no later but hopefully far earlier than the fall or winter of 2014. I’m still trying to decide what—if anything—I want to do in regards to crowdfunding for these projects, but given another announcement you’ll find a paragraph or two below, I’m thinking crowdfunding is likely going to happen. You’ll definitely hear about it if it does.

Because of this project, our tour for next year will be starting later than it normally does. Usually we take a break starting at the beginning of December and then head back out at the beginning of February. In 2014, our tour won’t begin until mid-April. The reason for this is that our day jobs don’t leave us with much time and energy during the week. That means that the weekends are our primary windows for recording, but that’s also when most of our shows are (SF cons especially). By adding an extra couple of months to our break, we hope to make a serious dent in the to-do list for these albums before we again set foot on the road.

And speaking of the tour…

We have decided that we want to release a Wax Chaotic album. It is intended to be a compilation of live performances from our 2014 tour, and we mean to call it “Vagabonds”. We don’t know yet what will be on it, but it seemed like a fun project to work on. (Don’t be afraid to weigh in—if there’s a song you’d like to hear on the album, let us know!).

If all goes well, it will be released either very late in 2014 or very early in 2015. So there’s three albums we’ve got on our to-do list for the next year and a half. We are nothing if not ambitious.

Now allow me to elaborate on what I mean by “if all goes well”.

One of the Super Secret Things we’ve been working on in the background is a fundraising project for our tour next year. The campaign is due to launch September 1st. If you’ve seen us this year doggedly getting video of our performances or asking you if we can record your feedback, this project is the reason why. We’re still keeping lots of the details under our hats for now, but since we have so many events in August, we figured it couldn’t hurt to start promoting our fundraising campaign now.

We’re doing this because the road is no longer whispering or muttering our names. It is practically screaming them. We want to be out in the world, seeing new places and making music for people. I know that for me personally, it is something that practically consumes my every waking thought. It follows me in my sleep, and it keeps me up at night. But in order to be as active next year as I want us to be, we’re going to need help. Thus, we’re having the fundraising campaign.

And I’m probably biased, but some of the backer rewards we’ve decided on are pretty awesome. We’re doing things like custom songwriting, “Wax Chaotic” branded thumb drives with unreleased studio versions of new songs, the chance to participate in a studio version of one of the new songs, artwork, autographed photos, autographed and handwritten lyrics sheets…the list goes on. The point is, we’re wracking our brains to think up all sorts of cool things we can to give you folks in exchange for your getting us out further from home next year.

We’ve been working since May or June of this year to start confirming shows for next year, and slowly they are beginning to cement themselves on the calendar. We even have a few of them to announce when the fundraiser actually launches. In the meanwhile, if anyone out there reading hosts house concerts or is in charge of programming for an SF con, Pagan festival, or other such event, please drop us a line.

Keep an eye here or on Facebook for more details upon the launch of this campaign.

But so that essentially means that Dragon Scale Studios will be producing three albums over the course of the next year and a half or so. And I’m pretty damn stoked about it! I hope you’ll be keeping an eye out for more updates as we’re able to share more information with you. We are so excited about everything that it’s impossible to describe. And you make it happen. You’re kinda awesome, huh?



Published May 24th, 2013 at 6:13 pm EST/EDT
firesongblog

Greetings! For the uninitiated, my name is Katt McConnell and this is the blog for my recording studio, Dragon Scale Studios. It hasn’t been getting updated nearly as often as my other blog, but things are about to get a whole lot livelier around here.

Last year I ran a promotion called The Lyrics Dump in which I posted the lyrics to new songs to the blog once a month for nine months and then invited my readers to vote for which ones would get recorded in the studio. The results were that all nine songs are due to be recorded, and I’ve been working away at that project ever since. I wanted to have things released a lot sooner than they’re going to be—we’ve been hampered by noisy neighbor-owned lawnmowers outside the studio window (we don’t have soundproofing), day jobs, surgery, and other such things—but in the end I think the delay hasn’t been a terrible thing. Sean, my husband and the guitarist on all of these tracks and I have been busy touring as Wax Chaotic, and the experience has definitely done us some good. It’s helped shape the songs into what they’ve become for these recordings, and it’s given us a good feel for what we want them to be upon release.

But I am very excited to announce that the first of the nine Lyrics Dump songs should be released no later than Friday, May 31st (which is also coincidentally my birthday). Keep an eye out here and on the Facebook page for further information.

In addition to this new release, I have some other exciting things to announce! Firstly, something from the past. I had the honor of being Interfilk Guest at this year’s FilKONtario. I was intending to do a full blog about the con but then we had a Wax Chaotic concert at Penguicon the weekend afterward and when we got home I proceeded to get very busy working on a lot of things, most notably all this recording I mentioned. But suffice it to say that that was probably one of the best weekends of my life. The people were all utterly amazing, the atmosphere was warm and welcoming, and the entire affair was just very exciting to me. Endless thanks go to Interfilk for sending me up there, and to my friend Bill Sutton for convincing them it was a good idea to do so.

Next, something for the future.

I have decided what my next albums will be. Yes, albums plural. As in, I intend to work on and release two albums at the same time. One benefit of having a recording studio in your home is that you can do insane things like this. …and one of the downsides of having a recording studio in your home is that you can do insane things like this. I expect it will be an interesting project. I haven’t written out a formal timeline yet because we’re still in the midst of trying to get the Lyrics Dump songs out the metaphorical door, but I do hope to release these albums sometime in mid to late 2014. Album titles and track lists will be publicized once I have the last few kinks worked out (or in other words there’s a song I know I want on one of them that I don’t know the name of yet because I haven’t written it yet).

And while we’re talking about the future, Wax Chaotic has many more shows coming up this year. We’d really love to see you at any of them! We get to keep doing all this awesome stuff—creating and releasing studio recordings of original material, performing for people, making new friends, writing new music—because of you. So come out to a concert if you can and have fun with us!

I think that’s it for today then. Expect there to be more activity going on here for a little while, at least until all of the Lyrics Dump songs are out in the world. After that I might get quiet again while working on the mystery albums. In the meantime, I leave you with this. Enjoy!



Published November 22nd, 2012 at 10:00 am EST/EDT
firesongblog

It’s been an…interesting year. I’ve gone through a couple of major life changes, and not all of them were pleasant. But even in the midst of a shit storm, I do try to give some mind to what’s good in my life. Lately I’ve found myself really thinking about it—it’s the month for it, after all, at least here in the US—and I wanted to share those thoughts.


I don’t normally do this. I’m actually pretty cynical about Thanksgiving for a lot of reasons. But I owe a lot of amazing people a tremendous amount of thanks, so this year, here’s a list of what I’m thankful for. And being that this is a music blog, you’ll probably notice a theme.

I’m thankful for my band mates, for putting up with my idiosyncrasies, and for being there to share both the good and the bad times.

I’m thankful for the friends who are always ready and willing to share music. Any music. You guys, and the community we build around the music, are more important to me than I will ever be able to express.

I’m thankful for the friends who are willing to let me share my music, and who get excited about new pieces.

I’m thankful for the friend who asked, in an endearing, semi-silly, yet totally serious tone I can only imagine her mother uses, when she’d be seeing my name on the ballot for a Pegasus award.

I’m thankful for the friend who said she’d have voted for a song of mine if it had been on the ballot this year. (That seriously is such an honor that it almost made me cry.)

I’m thankful for the friend who gallivants around the Midwest on buses so she can see me at conventions.

I’m thankful for the friend who believed that something about me and how I look at music is cool enough that he convinced a bunch of really sweet people that it was a good idea to send me to Canada next year.

I’m thankful for the friend who brought us soup.

I’m thankful for the two friends whose generosity is always especially surprising.

I’m thankful for the doctor who diagnosed and then treated my GERD, and at whose direction my hernia was diagnosed. I’m thankful that I know that there are other health professionals who are ready and willing to help me get rid of both of those problems (and here’s hoping my insurance will approve things again).

I’m thankful for Kickstarter, and I’m more thankful for the generous people who made pledges for “Cold September Ground” and not only helped all this wonderful, terrifying, humbling craziness happen, but enabled me to graduate from college in grandiose style.

I’m thankful for all the new people—all the new listeners, all the convention programming people who’d never heard of us, all the new friends interested in what I’m doing with my life—who’ve joined the party.

I’m thankful for all the convention programming people in general, and also thankful for all of the sound crews who’ve done shows for us this past year and change.

I’m thankful for the friend who is a sound guy and always down for doing a gig.

I’m thankful for the joy I get from music even despite all the other shit that tries to get in the way.

And I’m thankful that I have people who believe in me even when I don’t believe very much in myself.

There are somewhere around 365 days in any given year. I am thankful for all of the above and more every day. Today I wanted to express my thanks, in no uncertain terms, for all I have and for all you all have given me. There are so many things that I am thankful for that I could never list everything. The above is just a small sampling. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart. And happy Thanksgiving to those of you who celebrate it.



Published November 6th, 2012 at 5:56 pm EST/EDT
firesongblog

Hi, folks! I know there might be some people reading here who aren’t on Wax Chaotic’s mailing list, so I wanted to let those in question know that our upcoming appearance at Starbase Indy has been CANCELLED.

If you were looking forward to seeing us there, fear not. Our talented friends at Archer Productions of Indianapolis are hooking us up with an end-of-year hurrah house concert at what is essentially the last minute. Needless to say, we can’t thank them enough.

So come help us bid a fond farewell to our 2012 tour. We hope to see you there!



Published November 3rd, 2012 at 3:04 pm EST/EDT
firesongblog

I just wanted to let everyone know that it is very cold and a bit wet here in Indianapolis. That means that the air around my house is blissfully silent—at least as far as lawnmowers and basketballs go. Sean and I were able to get the guitar part for “The Banners of War” recorded this morning before having to break from the studio to deal with other business. Given how difficult it’s been to get any work done, I wanted to post this update and let everyone know that progress IS being made.

This is, by the way, in addition to progress we already made on “Awenydd” and “The White Wolf”. So the last months have not been without making some headway in the recording for this project, at least.

Also, to reward you all for your patience, I am considering recording and releasing a special version of “9 Lives” if we can find the time to record it. More on this as it develops.

Next weekend will hopefully allow us to get even further, so keep your fingers crossed! I’ll keep you posted. Thank you all so much for your patience! I’m so anxious to get these songs out in the world, I could scream.



Published October 23rd, 2012 at 5:02 pm EST/EDT
firesongblog

Hello, everyone! As it’s getting closer to November 1st—which you might remember was the deadline I set to have all of the LD songs released by—you might be getting pretty excited. I’m pretty excited. But unfortunately, everything isn’t exactly going according to plan.

See, Sean and I live quite close to several neighbors. These neighbors, being people who are not gamers (read: Allergic to sunlight), like to do things like mow their lawns and play basketball in their driveways on the weekends. Since my studio is not soundproofed, this rather presents a problem. It’s interesting enough as it is trying to record in an unsoundproofed studio with our house being right on a busy street and all. But the activities of our neighbors have proved to be quite problematic

We have found, thankfully, that there is a window, albeit a narrow one, in which we can actually get some recording done. This window is from about 9:00 AM until about 11:00 AM on Sunday mornings. So we have been able to get a little work done on a couple of songs, but it’s been slow going.

This means that I will not be releasing anything on the first of next month as I’d intended. It also means that I might need to wait a little until it’s cold and/or wet enough that those crazy outdoors-going-type-people stay inside for the majority of the day on the weekends. But this project is still definitely at the top of my list of priorities, and we’re getting into the studio whenever we’re able to find a few hours. I just wanted to let everyone know what’s going on.

Other than that, I do actually have some things to report, but they’re going to have to wait for now. I am somehow busier than I was when I was working on my Capstone project—it frightens me that that’s actually possible—and must be off to attend to other things. In the meantime, thank you for reading, and for your continued support. And if you’re going to Starbase Indy late next month, come see Wax Chaotic! It’s our last show of the year, and we’d love to see you all for one last hurrah before we go on our winter break.



Published July 20th, 2012 at 10:10 pm EST/EDT
firesongblog

I’ve done my final tallying. The results are…


Lyrics Dump progress graph



Pretty damn amazing! I am beyond excited by this. Thanks again, everyone!

I’ll post more updates on the actual music as I start recording. I can’t wait to get back into the studio again!



Published at 10:00 pm EST/EDT
firesongblog

And the final votes are in! I’ll post the progress graph when I get everything tallied, but it looks like I’m going to be very busy over the next few months.

Thanks so much to everyone who participated in this promotion. This was a lot of fun for me, and I hope that it was for you, too. (I’ll be interested to hear feedback whether it was or not, so feel free to share your thoughts with me.) I may have do something like this again in the future!

Now, then, to count…



Published July 19th, 2012 at 10:00 pm EST/EDT
firesongblog

There was no news to report last night, but boy is there ever today! Things have been very busy in my inbox, and I can’t thank you all enough! There are a few songs that are almost to the ten vote mark, and several that will need a bit of a push to get there. It would be awesome to record all nine of these songs, so I hope you keep your votes coming in! You have just a little over twenty-four hours to do so!


Here’s today’s update.


Lyrics Dump progress graph



And for your convenience, here’s the info table again. Keep the votes coming! And remember, a busy bard is a happy bard!

Lyrics Dump Songs
Technical Difficulties (Please Stand By) Listen

Voting has ended
[untitled] Listen

Voting has ended
Rumble Listen

Voting has ended
Cracked Listen

Voting has ended
The White Wolf Listen

Voting has ended
The Banners of War Listen

Voting has ended
Break Out Listen

Voting has ended
Awenydd Listen

Voting has ended
Buttons Listen

Voting has ended

Arrangements of final recordings may be different from the arrangements used when the songs were performed live. There may also be slight differences in the lyrics of the final recordings.



Published July 17th, 2012 at 8:30 pm EST/EDT
firesongblog

Today saw the entry of a couple more votes. So far “Cracked” and “The Banners of War” are leading. It’s a long way to ten votes, folks, but it’s already Tuesday. That means it’s only a short while until voting closes at 10:00 PM this Friday. Here’s today’s update.


Lyrics Dump progress graph



And for your convenience, here’s the info table again. Keep the votes coming! And remember, a busy bard is a happy bard!

Lyrics Dump Songs
Technical Difficulties (Please Stand By) Listen

Voting has ended
[untitled] Listen

Voting has ended
Rumble Listen

Voting has ended
Cracked Listen

Voting has ended
The White Wolf Listen

Voting has ended
The Banners of War Listen

Voting has ended
Break Out Listen

Voting has ended
Awenydd Listen

Voting has ended
Buttons Listen

Voting has ended

Arrangements of final recordings may be different from the arrangements used when the songs were performed live. There may also be slight differences in the lyrics of the final recordings.