Back in dinosaur days, if you wanted to record music you had to beg and plead with a record label to give you a 6-figure loan, which you then used to pay someone else to let you use their studio.
Fortunately however, high quality studio equipment has become more affordable in recent years. Most of The Complete’s music is recorded into 2 kick-ass pre amps that I own, and then put into the computer to be dealt with later. (It’s not entirely that simple, but you get the point).
But in order to get a professional sound you need more than just good gear…you need a good room. All the best gear in the world can’t help a crap-sounding room; after all, garbage in-garbage out.
Now, my recording room is good…but I only have the one (boo-hoo right?). I wanted to be able to set up my live room in a bunch of different configurations so that I can do ALL of my necessary recording in it. One set up for vocals, a different one for acoustic guitar, another for drums…you get the picture. To do that, I needed sound baffles. A quick Google search told me what they’re made out of, and to my surprise everything was available at my local big-box hardware store.
So I made some:
While not inexpensive, they cost a fraction of what 6 weeks in someone else’s studio would cost. This just helps prove that you don’t need to go down the old road anymore. Just save your dollars, use the internet to learn how-to, and do it your-freaking-self. (I’ve seen inventive people put together photography studios, video production suites, you name it. The internet is the most powerful tool available to creators.)
We only have ourselves to blame if we aren’t moving forward.
PS I’m starting to think I could build my own guitar amp…
Happy effin’ New Year! I trust everyone had a blast for NYE? I started my night characteristically late…walked in the door at “3…2…1…Happy New Year!”
Here’s me, looking all dapper for NYE:
I was party hopping. St. John’s is such a small city that you can actually make it to like 4 parties in one night. That way, nobody gets mad at you for double booking stuff – except dates probably.
Anyway I’ve started the new year the same way I ended the old: in the recording studio. I don’t make resolutions, but one thing I want to do this year is increase the pace at which The Complete releases music. Unrealistic goal? We shall see.
So did anyone get anything cool for Xmas? My friend gave me this awesome thing that shoots 2 litre bottles up in the air but it’s been SO DAMN COLD outside that we haven’t had a chance to fire it up yet. Frigging winter, man.
Anywaaaaaaays, back at it!
The Complete releases a new song/video every 6-8 weeks, and today is the day:
You can also download Fly Away for free right here: Fly Away download link.
This website shows me what search terms people are using in order to find it. Most of them are things you’d expect to see (“The Complete”, “Kevin Williams” etc). Some are not. For your reading pleasure, here’s a small sample of the “not”:
-”Paul Stanley’s asshole”
-”johnny depp special effect makeup” (why would that bring anyone here?)
-”law and whoreder”
-”rotting doo ward” (I have no idea what that is)
-”funny nickelback tweets”
-”up her wazoo”
-”jason stackhouses he man jumper”
-”doo doo doo ch ch ch song”
and the pièce de résistance:
-”show me kevin williams getting fucked by everyone who did him!”
I have no words.
So last week MTV put a profile for The Complete on their website. Pretty cool huh? It doesn’t do anything (like tell jokes or anything), but it makes me look a little more legit I suppose. Now when I’m talking to girls I can be all “so did you see my artist profile on MTV?” and they’ll be all “Let’s make out.”
A music store in St. John’s was having a clearance sale this week so naturally I was down there, sniffing out deals. The place was pretty much picked clean but they had a rad Egnater guitar amp for dirrrrrt cheap. I said YOU ARE COMING HOME WITH ME and it did. We are now bff’s:
If it had a sense of humour and a vagina I’d marry it.
In actual band news, the next song is tracked and (almost) mixed. It is called Fly Away and it’s faster and more rockin’ than Hey You. Goes in for mastering on Monday and I’m filming a video for it tomorrow. WOO.
I’ve seen some of the footage from the music video for Run that we filmed earlier this year. It. Is. Stunning. Run was done with a film crew and stuff so it’ll take longer for it to come out but the wait will be worth it. I basically crapped my pants at the picture quality.
I had a party on the weekend and wanted to do something cool. Lucky for me I found THIS:
A friggin’ Transformer pinata. Tough as Optimus Prime is though, turns out he’s no match for a Louisville Slugger.
Alright mateys, back to work. I’ve gotta finish that mix.
So I’ve set up my schedule for the fall to include the release of some more songs w/a corresponding video. Some people have asked why I don’t just release them on an album.
I think of it like this: how many albums do you own where you only listen to 2 songs, and skip the rest? Be honest. I’ll bet it’s most of them. There’s a lot of reasons for that I think. Perhaps the most obvious being that bands are often rushed in the studio and can’t always give each song the polishing it might need.
I don’t mind having less material if it means that there’s fewer C- and D-quality songs in The Complete’s catalogue. I work out of my own studio which means I’m not paying someone else by the hour. There’s no one looking at their watch or demanding 10 finished songs by the end of the month. That’s a pretty sweet situation. (The downside of course, is that it’s easy to be a lazy sack of crap.)
Maybe a bigger reason though, is the fact that most people (myself included) flock to YouTube when they’re looking for music. If I hear about a band I think I might be interested in, I don’t buy the album sight unseen (like I once had to. How many times was I pissed off and disappointed?). Instead, I just search YouTube.
Since The Complete is a fairly new act, I can’t really take 6 months and lock myself away to do an album either. It’s my intention to release music on something like a regular schedule in order to try and keep people interested/paying attention.
The old music industry has run into problems because its entire infrastructure is set up to sell you a round piece of plastic. In the old days albums had astronomical profit margins. Problem with that is, music is 1′s and 0′s now. For better or worse, I think it’s time we musicians embraced that. With that in mind, I’m currently operating under the belief that it’s all about the song. If my songs are good enough, people will hear them. If not then it’s back to the drawing board.
Some people HAVE asked me for a physical release though, so I may collect everything at some point and do a short run of Vinyl or CD pressings. For the most part however, I’ll be focusing on the song/video format for the foreseeable future.
TMZ is reporting that the Octomom is now a musician. You can listen to her terrible song on their website.
Music is a joke. Are you the least bit famous? Maybe S someone’s D on camera once? Then guess what? You too can be a musician! Don’t play an instrument? Don’t sing? Don’t know how to program beats? Don’t worry about it! Look at this fucking thing:
Just whip out your tits or bang a famous actress and voila, music career. Fuck if I’d have known that I’d have never picked up a guitar, just unzipped my pants and had a go at someone famous.
Now I’d normally not give a shit about something as lame as that, but that Octomom person will get lots of attention for this (mostly bad). And we’re in an attention economy. I released a song last week and it rocks. Not the best song anyone’s ever written, but it’s better than the Octomom’s. And guess how many people will hear it? Waaaaaay less people than’ll hear her song.
Am I annoyed? Yes. But the world owes me nothing. The cool thing about my song is that the people who hear it are people who are paying attention to me because they (hopefully) like what I do. The Octomom will never be able to say that.
Conclusion 1: The only thing I know how to do is be a musician. However far I can take this will only be because of me and my music, nothing else. I didn’t blow a famous singer (like Kim K), get famous myself and then decide I’m a musician. While people like that might make zillions of dollars by selling perfume and shit, at least I can fucking say that everything I’ve ever gotten was because of my talent and not my dick.
Conclusion 2: The attention both those songs will get/got is mostly negative. Maybe it’s best that I don’t get that kind of attention at this early stage in the game. Rebecca Black is famous, but it’s not for a good reason.
The Complete have a new song/video! “Hey You” is available as a free, high quality download by clicking here.
While that’s downloading, check out the video:
I hate being sold things.
Every time I walk into a music store and hear “Kevin, you need to try this guitar. It’s exactly what you need, you’ll love it”, I die a little inside. I can’t stand being told what I will or won’t like. Can it fly? Tell jokes? Does it have a vagina on it? No? Then don’t tell me I’ll love it.
I recently “liked” a band on Facebook. I won’t be mean and say who it is, let’s just say they’re more famous than I am. Less than a day later I start seeing pictures of them in my newsfeed “rocking out with So-and-So headphones” and “chilling with the lads from Such-and-Such energy drink company”. I like a few of their songs, but not enough to let them block up my facebook with in-stream product placements.
I understand why bands do that. Everyone wants to drive Ferrari’s and own private jets, but music just doesn’t pay like that anymore. In the 70′s perhaps, but not the 2010′s. Taylor Swift made $45 million in 2011 but to get that kind of money she has to “partner” with a perfume company, let Walmart slap her name on jeans, that kind of thing (for the record, she also had a few big-ish acting roles).
But if I like your band, then I like your band. I kinda don’t want feel like you’re using me to squeeze a few ad dollars out of whoever will give you money. That just might annoy me to the point where I think of you in a negative way. Case in point: The Who.
The Who were (are?) a great band, with great songs. But every time I hear any of their tunes now all I can think about is that stupid cop show where the guy wears the glasses and says cheesy one-liners. I hate that show. And now by default I associate The Who with something that I hate.
Led Zeppelin famously won’t allow their music to be used in ads and stuff, which means they won’t annoy me for no reason anytime soon. I’m sure they’d make a fortune by letting some company use their music in commercials for dick pills or something, but then again they don’t need the money. Unlike our friends in the band I liked on Facebook the other day.
Stop selling me things!
Here’s how this is going to work:
Every month something new from The Complete is going to come out. A single or a video (or who knows, a freakin’ book or something). At the end of the year I’ll probably compile them on an album and do a limited vinyl pressing or something.
More on this as it happens…
Head on over to The Complete’s facebook page to enter. Win one of these dandy babies, as modelled by yours truly:
The good folks over at Rock 101 have added The Complete to their rotation!
Head on over and give them a listen! (They play a ton of ROCKING stuff.)
Kevin is in this month’s issue of Make-Up Artist Magazine as a special effects model. Page 32! (It’s the issue with Johnny Depp on the cover as Jack Sparrow).