Demos and Sketches Part 3 – Ever
It means everything that you never let go…
That you never let go…
In Part One of this series, I mentioned that during the earliest stages of the band, Hobbes had sent a demo of an old song of ours called “Lloyd” to Emily as part of our “audition” to see what she could come up with. Now, I cannot speak for Hobbes, but after doing a little digging into Emily’s musical background, I wasn’t fooling myself one bit into believing that she wasn’t doing the exact same thing to us when she sent over “Ever Is a Long Time”…
That was the earliest recording of “Ever” I have access to. Remarkable. Sure, Hobbes and I and everyone else in the band fancy ourselves as being songwriters, which is technically true…
But Emily Anderson is the REAL deal.
“’Ever’ was the first song I sent Neil and Hobbes. I remember listening to it after Hobbes put some synth to it and straightened out the rubato a bit. I heard real potential and it was exciting to see what we could create together. Then Neil wrote a touching guitar solo that completed it.”
In addition to synth and tightening up the tempo, Hobbes eventually added drum patches and I provided a little bass. The end result became part of our original 5-song demo working as a three-piece. Not only did we use that demo to eventually lure George, Trever, and Candice into the band, but we somehow managed to book our entire first year of gigs off of it as well.
Smoke and mirrors. Smoke and mirrors.
In late 2016, the group experimented inside our home studios and recorded a proper “band demo” of the song by essentially swapping audio files back-and-forth with each other with George patiently manning the mixing board trying to make sense of it all. Then in early 2017, I convinced myself it’d be a swell idea with zero background and experience in modern day filmmaking and editing to shoot a music video to accompany it. I believed if we kept the concept relatively simple, used as much natural light as possible, and kept cuts to a minimum, I could pull off something relatively decent to look at.
Here’s what actually happened with that plan:
Multiple last minute and unforeseen scheduling conflicts forced me to take what was supposed to be a rather safe “live performance” of the band into a different direction. And although common sense was telling me to adjust to our circumstances by simplifying an already simple idea down even further, my stubbornness and ambition decided that would be too easy. Of course it’d be more satisfying if I turned it into something far more complicated than it needed to be!
Did I mention the “zero background and experience in modern day filmmaking and editing” part?
Whatever. Like many of us in the world, I can pretty tough on myself. You don’t have to be an artist-type to take pride in the things you love and cringe a little when they don’t turn out quite the way you planned. That’s living. But even though all I see are roughly handled miscues and inexperience, I can most definitely take a step back and appreciate it for what it is. I ADORE this thing. From an educational standpoint, I got back everything I put into it and more. And from a pure DIY perspective, this is exactly how you do it on zero budget* and unlimited determination.
Will I do this again? Absolutely not! But what a hell of a way to start!
You can listen to the studio recording of “Ever Is a Long Time” off our debut album here:
Until we meet again,
MEETING NEIL IS EASY
*164.25. That is how many unpaid work hours I put into that thing. Not that I’m counting or planning revenge or anything.