Completed Covers

Here are some covers I think are okay… 🙂

Please make sure your ears don’t bleed when you listen, they sound okay I guess… Please leave feedback, it would mean a lot even if you said they were terrible. I need to have something to rebound off of. I don’t have a vocal tutor and I taught myself guitar, sorry if it’s bad!

Bon Iver/Birdy – Skinny Love:

James Bay – Hold Back The River:

Kodaline – All I Want:

John Legend – All of Me: 

Vance Joy – Riptide:

Passenger – Let Her Go:

Bye!!!!

Does producing make you a producer?

Recording is so tiring! Wait no, it’s just singing and guitar. Recording is simple, surprisingly, it’s not terribly hard. It’s not at all rocket science, anybody can do it. 

But the thing that makes good audio is location, equipment and assets (vocals and instruments).

From last time I recorded, I changed location, added a mic and used my acoustic guitar.

Microphone: AT2020 USB Microphone

My microphone is a USB microphone because it can be recorded through any computer easily.

In my last post, there is more information for anybody curious.

Bathroom studios are the best type of studios; spacious, best acoustics and not very expensive.

(like I’m gonna buy an extra bathroom to record in for my annoying voice, as if)

There are pros and cons though, I have found that they are so amazing there may be some minor problems..

The Pros:

awesome voice projection

– guitars get projected nicely, to even out guitar and singing

– the room basically acts as a big cave, that makes echoes and makes the instruments sound fuller, and giving voice clarity that can only be found in top microphones and real vocal/song studios

The Cons*: 

the projection can pick up mistakes, that usually can’t be heard in normal rooms, and because I don’t own a filter for my microphone it can pick my breathing pretty badly (in my opinion)

Overall, this is my favourite recording place currently. 

The pros outweigh the cons and if I had more equipment it would be amazing but I am still young and even just buying me a microphone is actually quite a bit for my songs, which my originals are not good (yet, hehe) but I am thankful.

*Remember also, if you are going to record in your bathroom, watch out for water, elevate your laptop/camera, make sure there are no dripping taps. Be careful of dropping things on the floor, usually people have hard floors so if you drop your instrument, it’s gonna be a little bit, uh, hurt, loud and possibly broken. The laptop also, a shattered glass screen isn’t the best way to show your parents you’re a great musician… or a popped out battery (I experienced the second one oops.. hehe).

Guitar: My guitar is an Alvarez. It’s a folk sized guitar, which doesn’t effect sound much just size. There is not much to know about this guitar, I am not a very big guitar nerd. 

The time taken to record all of these songs:

5 days (9 hours, seems like a lot, but i would have annoying errors and mess up timing and things like that)

The websites I got chords/lyrics:

Ultimate Guitar (also has bass, ukulele and drums): 

https://www.ultimate-guitar.com

https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/top/top100.htm

Ultimate guitar has almost every song (I have weird music taste) and you can print off the tabs/chords off easily without having to sign up. Also, these are free unless you’re on the PRO setting. Pretty logic based. I also love it cause it has lots of different settings. Like auto-scroll. I love this one cause I can record without having to scroll. It helps me cause then I don’t have to edit.

BettyLouRS (not blocked by the school net, unlike ultimate guitar): 

http://bettylou.zzruss.com/bettylou2000.htm

I like this website too, but the problem is, it doesn’t have an auto scroll setting like Ultimate Guitar does, which annoys me, but it prints in a cleaner format than Ultimate guitar, and all of the chords are super easy and simple, but not over simplified. Without a capo this can be very annoying though, sorry.

Planning and Preparations

My message is to show people that guitars can play a range of songs, so I’m choosing 1 – 2 from each genre to cover with vocals. I’m going to use no other instruments and just layer the guitar. I’m layering the tracks in GarageBand, which is a software on Apple devices. The only alteration I use is reverb. It just makes it have a louder, fuller sound.

I’m going to use my stratocaster electric guitar for all of these songs, maybe an acoustic if it seems necessary for the song. Stratocaster guitars can be changed into many different tones, allowing for more diverse playing. This is paired with an amp (mine is a Blackstar) and a capo (for transposing). Picks are not necessary here, fingers are fine. My electric stratocaster guitar looks like this:

image

I will be using my microphone for these. It’s an AT2020 USB microphone. USB microphones are compact and nice looking so I decided to get one. It was a good thing to get because it cuts out white noise and from reviews and my view it sounds like you’re right next to the person, it’s that clear. It connects to laptops and it looks like this:

image1

I am so excited to record all of the covers! Stay tuned for a list of all the songs and the genre they are from. I have more than 30+ songs, with 25+ genres! See you soon!

Passion Project No. 3

Guitars. They can handle many types of music. Sure, a few come to mind instantly. Rock, country and pop, but they can do much more. Genres shouldn’t be boundaries for a guitars music playing abilities, nor should age or time. Different guitars make different sounds but any guitar can play any song to an extent. Not having an electric guitar shouldn’t restrict you to playing country and pop, you can play rock.

I believe that guitars are one of the best instruments to play for all ages. They are easy to transport and have lots of different rhythms you can play. From fingerpicking, chords, fret-tapping, whammy bars and muting there are many things you can do with a guitar.

Guitars come in many different types, believe it or not. There are 3 different types of acoustic guitar: classical (nylon strings), acoustic (steel strings) and the arch-top acoustic guitar. Below are all the types of guitars I know off the top of my head. Now there’s no excuse not to play a guitar. Ha. I own a acoustic classical and an stratocaster electric guitar.

Types of guitars:

  • Electric guitar
  • Acoustic guitar (3 types)
  • Double-necked guitar
  • Electro-acoustic guitar
  • Twelve-stringed guitar
  • Resonator guitar
  • Steel guitars
  • Archtop guitar
  • Bass guitars 

I want to show people that the electric guitar is an amazing instrument and sounds great in any genre. I encourage people to take up guitar. It’s an amazing instrument.

Choice Day

Choice day was extremely exciting! The point of choice day was to give everybody in primary more choice in what they learn. Here are the choices of activity that could’ve been chosen for your activity:

I did acting out. I loved acting, even though it was kind of terrifying being in front of a crowd, or even just 20 people… I can’t help it even though I love to act! It’s going to be so embarrassing watching it back… I did Acting Out and it was really fun. Following a criteria you did an act with about 4 other people from different grades, genders and ages. We made costumes in the Crafty Corner. You could choose from about 5 different acting scenario criteria. Our criteria/act was to “Tell A Story” and it’s about when the books disappear and everybody is required to act in the scene.

Our act was about the world banning books for being potentially harmful. It is a news report followed by court and the end of a news report. Books become illegal to possess. All books perish. It’s a comedy skit.

I learnt that drama can be fun even with younger people and adding voice/tone can really help the performance.

 

Promotion Film Reflection

Our brief was simply this. Geelong By Kids; For Kids. Be creative, use good editing and maybe we’ll feature your film. The brief was simple, but it was really informative. What was Geelong to us/kids? We need to show kids how fun Geelong is! Use interesting editing to hook in your audience. Remember, this is for kids, not the parents. We had to show people that Geelong is the place to be.

Research was next. It consisted of viewing existing promotion films on the website. These ran for no more that about 1:30, so that became the time criteria for us. No longer than 90 seconds. Their film clips ranged in levels, views and shots. They all lasted no longer than about 6 seconds, so this became criteria, too.

So, our criteria for the films were…

  • No longer than 90 seconds long
  • Clips shorter than usual (no more than 6 secs)
  • Be creative with editing choices
  • Make it fun
  • Geelong By Kids; For Kids

We went to these places and the vibe I was going for each:

  • 6A: SupaTramp (Fun, active, fast-paced)
  • 6A: Torquay (Relaxed, beach, surf)
  • 6B: Balyang Sanctuary (Family, fun)
  • 6B: Leisurelink (Fun, active, upbeat)
  • 6C: Eastern Beach (Family, fun, active, hangout)

My partner was Abbi and we basically just made the shot list together and filmed together on the day. Our crew was Jesse Mc, Reuben, Harry Sad and Lukas. We just shared film that we took to use in our film. We can’t be in 6 places at once, so we share footage. This is why it’s important to plan, 5 other people are using your footage, not just you.

Our locations (6B) as I stated were Balyang Sanctuary and Leisurelink. We were now at filming at this point. We overshoot so that people can choose their pick of the golden moments that they want. Golden moments are basically the moments that are really good.

We only kept the footage that had golden moments during culling/converting. We had to convert all of our footage because it was either shot with a DLSR or a GoPro which do not automatically record as .mp4. We need .mp4 footage because Corel doesn’t take any other type that I know of. I used iMovie, and it works best with .mp4 footage. iMovie also uses .vlc files.

I edited with iMovie because the program runs smoother when doing in app playback. It takes .vlc files pretty smooth too. I also used it because it has easier access to spilt screens and layering. The saturation dial is very precise, and colouring looks realistic. I am also very familiar with it. If I wanted to do my best, I wanted to be familiar with the program. Also, my school laptop was having space/storage issues.

I used the effects:

  • Split-screen (half screen)
  • Dissolve transition (just fading into each clip to make it less choppy)
  • Picture in picture (layering film)

My feedback was better than before, mainly in the area for music. I didn’t change the music, but it got higher ranks. I’m not sure why that happened. The only thing I changed prior to second feedback was my clip timing and the SupaTramp footage. I changed the clip timing to add in the SupaTramp footage. Enough said.

 

Finally Complete

Completed! Finally done… For now.

Now I can breathe easy, for now anyway. Everybody should be very proud of their Passion Projects. They’re all amazing. I’m not just saying that. Most of these are things that I can’t do very well. I think everybody should be proud to share something that they love, at least.

I think my voice sounds terrible in most of them, I think my voice sounds better in my head, haha. I’m delusional. I have a shedding guitar solo on guitar so maybe I should more away from singing? Anyways, Emmy sounded perfect though! She’s always doing singing solos and such, I wish I had the confidence to. In a way, I wish I was like her. Great work Emmy! Continue being you, cause you’re perfect that way!

Emmy and our album ended up having 5 originals and 1 cover. Two written by me, three written by amazing Emmy and the cover was Riptide – Vance Joy. My favourite that was recorded was Riptide. Even though it was a cover, I think it was nice. We were both singing in it. It was a collaboration. It’s the first time I’ve ever recorded a collaboration and I learnt a lot. 

It was really hectic and I think I could’ve done some things better:

  • Audio quality: For a few songs it sounded almost muted after rendering. I wonder whether it was my headphones being used to listen back or the actual process itself but I will use a full microphone set next time. No matter how long it takes. I want to invest in a good microphone at least. I think it would make the audio sound crisper and I wouldn’t need to spend a long time trying to filter through the audio waves correcting the sound levels. With some microphones it does it automatically. Or auto-magically, I have no idea how it happens.
  • Guitar: Maybe my guitar could have been amped up (acoustic). There are acoustic pickups available at the store, Oxygen Music. If you were wondering, that’s where I buy all my music books and stuff. I might get a new acoustic guitar, like the one in the Year 6 classroom. It has a built in tuner, which would be good for tuning on the spot. Also, it has a amp slot (near the bottom) and it’s picks it up through an amp (which I already have for my electric guitar) so it would be convenient. It’s a little bit of a shame having the Year 6 guitar just sitting there most of the time. Oh! Or we could make big group bands and have a battle of the bands one night in the hall! Woah. Then if people didn’t want to participate in bands then we could let them take their film-making talents further by learning how to lip-sync and adapt audio. Photographers could take pictures, if wanted. We could commentators and presenters for people wanting to and then people learning how to use the stage effects. It could be like a choice thing. What was I talking about? Oh, hehe the guitar. I need to buy some sort of adapter. It sounds better if I do.

 

 

Greece: Culture, Religion, Beliefs and Social Behaviours

Modern Greek Culture

I chose Greece because I have some friends from Greece and I wanted to understand where they come from. I thought it would be a good way to start a conversation with them. Also, the olympics recently ended, and they started in Olympia, Greece. So, here is my RVE post about Greece, the differences between Australia and Greece and the similarities. Please read on.

The similarities:

  1. Tourist Destinations: Both countries attract many local and international tourists every year, close to millions even. They have lots of attractions. They both have lots to boast for and both countries are quite beautiful.

An attraction that Greece has: 

Syntagma Square – central square in Athens, Greece. Built in the 19th century. Underneath the marble streets there is Syntagma metro stations. There are hotels and shopping places. It has Hadrian’s library, Phyx, Philopappos Monument and so many more historical items and buildings within walking distance. 

An attraction that Australia has:

Beaches – Australia’s beaches really attract a lot of visitors. We are a nation surrounded by sea and we have many beaches great for surfing, swimming or just even hanging out, shopping or eating out. From beautiful soft white beaches (Whitehaven Beach, sand is actually silica so it’s soft.. visit this place!), pristine shorelines, wildlife, blue water and surf destinations.

The most famous beaches are…

  • Bondi Beach, Sydney
  • Lizard Island, OLD
  • Byron Bay Beach, NSW
  • Wineglass Bay, Tasmainia
  • Mandalay Beach, WA
  • 75 Mile Beach, Fraser Island, OLD
  • Noosa Main Beach, Sunshine Coast, OLD
  • Burleigh Heads Beach, OLD
  • Cable Beach, WA
  • Whitehaven Beach, OLD

The differences:

  1. Language: Their primary language is Greek (10.7 million speak it in Greece), and ours is English (76.8% speak only english fluently). Obviously, we do not speak Greek as our first language, or know lots of people that do that live or were born here. 
  2. Population: Australia has 23.13 million, while Greece has 11.03 million. We have over double the population of Greece, but that is reasonable, we are basically a continent and they are a country. 

 

Retrieving audio

Production is hectic, fun and tiring. I hope it’s worth it!

During this time, I have learnt so much about recording, it’s really fun. I like recording because well, not only I can record myself, but I can help others. I have met so many people wanting to share their talent, but have no idea how. Many of them in my grade, in the form of music. It’s a common passion, and that is why, I have chosen music for my Passion Project. I had no idea so many people related to music, especially the people to our grade. Such wonderful musicians I have as friends! Comment your favourite song below! I want to see what genre people our age like 🙂

Here is the equipment we have used to record:

  • Macbook Pro
  • Rode Microphone
  • Garageband
  • Handheld microphone & stand

Having a sleepover with Emmy was awesome! We had so much fun! Our album consists of 5 originals and 1 cover, 3 originals written by Emmy, the other 2 written by me. The cover is Riptide by Vance Joy. Vance Joy… more like Emmy Joy. *drum clash* We took so many takes but we are happy with the results. We did have problems, it wasn’t only rainbows and butterflies, it’s compromise. 

So, we had these struggles while recording, and the solutions:

  • Not hearing vocals properly – Re-recording over the top of the base track, therefore strengthening the vocals. The reason for not hearing properly in the first place is the instruments being too loud. It is quite difficult to record like a pro and have about 6 different and distinguished tracks, therefore not needing this, but it is difficult on the program I’m using, Garageband. Overall Garageband is pretty easy & amateur.
  • Hearing background noise (wood chopping, TV, siblings) – We either waited or we closed windows. We couldn’t move Emmy’s piano so.. Yeah. We’re so adaptable.
  • Vocals – Emmy was a little sick during our sleepover, so her vocals were a little bit forced. We ended up using a handheld microphone and a stand to record it so that we weren’t straining her beautiful voice. Even so, Emmy’s voice was still amazing. She can sing, even when sick!
  • Laptop with lyrics going onto “sleep” while recording – Quite minor but was annoying. I just had to stand near and help without making any noise, which… didn’t work most of the time but we got there! Thanks for putting up with me Emmy! 😛