I Made an Album

I wasn’t expecting to.

It just kind of… happened.

You see, I was finishing up work on the 8th song that I’ve recorded in the last 6 or 7 months, Jolene, a cover of Dolly Parton’s song.

Anyway, while I was waiting for the blessing to use the photograph of an old friend for the artwork associated with this song, I started asking people if they’d listen to my music more if I was on Spotify. I didn’t get a lot of responses but everyone said yes; in fact, they’d listen up to 50% more often.

So… I took a day to look into it and see what kind of distribution is out there these days; since the last time I did it was back in 2007 and all we had was TuneCore. And TuneCore is one of the most expensive options these days. Now, I’m not saying you do or do not get your money’s worth with them, I’m just saying… I needed something as cheap as possible. So I went with DistroKid. They are the ones that manage the media and submit them to all of the digital outlets like Spotify, iTunes, Apple Music, Amazon, YouTube, Tidal, and a bunch of others that aren’t popular in the states.

All the while, I began to realize I had enough songs for an album so why not make it all into an album?

I also have had this constantly-evolving concept of an album since 2010 called Live at Home. Originally, it was just going to be some songs I recorded at home… live. But then it turned into songs that I recorded at home, I would just dump into this “album” on BandCamp. It was supposed to grow into an album and… I guess it did. It just took 9 years. I decided: This. This is Live at Home. These songs I’ve been recording and putting out there as singles… they are Live at Home. It may be mostly a collection of six cover songs with two originals sprinkled in, but it was an album, goddammit.

And it was. I kind of rushed at this point. I gave the tracklisting all of an hour’s worth of thought. I re-did the cover art I had so it looked a little more professional and sent it on its way.

The original cover art for "Live at Home" -- Rene Magritte's "The Son of Man"
The original cover art for “Live at Home” — Rene Magritte’s “The Son of Man”

The cover art I had used since 2010 was Magritte’s The Son of Man which was never a problem, as I was never selling it or doing anything with it. Until now. Sure enough, as soon as I submitted this album, one of the digital stores took issue with the artwork and said it needed to be something original or I needed permission to use it. Fair.

So again, I rushed. I took a minute to think about what else I could use for cover art and I remembered my “Ghost” photograph that you can see in my recent blog post The Big One. I thought: “This photo makes sense.” It’s an old one I took back in 2001 or so, it’s a double exposure meant to make me look translucent, like I’m fading away. And I am! In reality, I’m really fading away. This album might be my last hoorah! It made perfect sense to use it. So I quickly changed the cover art and re-submitted it without any problems and that’s what we have today.

Live at Home - official cover art
Live at Home – official cover art

I guess that last paragraph said the rest of my purpose for this post. Yes, it’s morbid. But this could be it. This is a last-minute bucket list item I’ve conquered. It didn’t take much to do, granted, but it’s an accomplishment; it’s something to be proud of. And… I am.

In a matter of 3 days, I decided to make — and then made — a new album.

If you don’t have Spotify, go to my LISTEN page… and there’s a new list on the sidebar that directs you to all the main places you can hear the album. If you do listen and you have the ability to rate or review or thumbs up or whatever, please do it. It will tell the service that people actually like this and then it’ll be sent to more people at random. Thanks!

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