I have found it to be profoundly rewarding recording music at home. I'm still learning, but I like to think I'm getting better and better at it.
"Two Contradictory Points of View" was an exercise in restraint. My goal was to be minimalist; the drums, very basic...the guitars, simple and direct.
The singing was actually the most challenging. My first set of lyrics did not match the flow of the music; harsh consonants, forced, multi-syllable words. I had to streamline it, simplify it, replace hard sounds with softer vowels and muffled consonants. It needed 'smoothing out.'
Then the actual singing. At such a low, simplistic level, any attempt at artistic expression seemed artificial. I had to record it again and again, each time going flatter, quieter, simpler, until the actual singing did not call attention to itself. (Not easy for a showoff like me!) At that point the words and the melody carried the song, and it worked.
I recently bought a cheap Squier Telecaster that turned out to be a bad bargain; I've been through a few travails getting it right. A replacement set of original Telecaster Vintage Pickups (the installed ones shorted out) gave it a great sound. Then a tuning peg went bad, forcing me to buy a whole new set of Griplock locking tuners. BIG improvement! The guitar now has a great tone *and* stays locked in tune, so much so that I can relax when playing it. This crappy, scrappy guitar is now a quality instrument, one I thoroughly enjoy playing.
I used the Tele for the lead guitar work in "Contradictory" and it was a delight; subtle, solid, and reliable. I had no need for any effects other than a slight touch of reverb, yet it gave me a smooth, rich, sustaining yet haunting tone. As for the solo itself, again, minimalist. I deliberately left melodic phrases hanging, unresolved, in an effort to supplement the disquiet of the lyrics.
Going forward, as I record my songs I'm working on 'fit and finish.' I find that if each individual part is crafted well, then it will all fit together more smoothly and be easier to mix and master. Both this song and my previous entry, "I Learned From Martin Mull" both came together pretty quickly after the actual recording was finished. As they taught me in the Navy, "attention to detail" is paramount.
Feedback is welcome, likes are appreciated, and sharing is encouraged! Any questions, ask!
I hope you like what you hear. More good stuff is coming.