Thursday, September 24, 2009

We Make Stuff!

Recap time! I'll make this short though since I mainly wanted to share some eye candy with y'all. Yours truly was at The Scoot Inn this past Saturday from 7pm-12am for the We Make Stuff event (hosted by Electric Promotions). The night consisted of free Nadamoo ice cream, delicious drinks provided by Treaty Oak rum, raffles, button making with The Wondercraft, a fashion show from rockin Austin designers, and skateboard art! And, to top things off, proceeds from the nights' raffles went towards Art From the Streets. On a side note, for all you lovely people out there who love Austin's Rare magazine as much as I do, there's a great AFTS interview in this month's issue, so be sure to read (available in print or on Rare's website). All in all, it was a good night and I was lucky to have the company of fellow artists who I knew...and more importantly, liked. :) As always, the night featured a gander (yes, we're geese) of Etsy Austin's lovely ladies. Check out their shops cause these chicks seriously rock:
-Kim Soliz of DevilGirlDesign
-Anne Marie Beard of AnneMarie
-Samantha Hlavalty of NepenthesBathtime
-Cathy Fuentes of SweetWolf
-Merritt Gade of MerrittGade
-April Wright of AprilWrightDesign
-Jen Bryan of LucyBlueStudio
-Beth Hempton of SnuggleHerd
-Beth Albrecht of PairedHearts
-Kim Sae-Eua of Broken Ear Productions

Action Jackson out!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

If it was easy, everyone would do it...

Been busy during the past two weeks with setting up Pro Tools aka my "studio" aka the adjacent space by my bed, writing songs, and a few things here and there with DGAJ. My bro and I are continuing work on the song he's calling, "Phoenix". Don't worry, that name's not gonna stick, it's just something he's tacking on for the sake of giving the song a name. I've just about got the whole bass line written out, so all that's left are vocals and a guitar solo, my favorite part.

I always dread writing solos because I'm not especially great with improv to begin with and my technical skills don't exactly match up with what I think of when I think of guitar solos. Perhaps that's the time to test out how high the gain on the distortion will go? Haha. Works for some people. I also dread writing vocals because even though I think I have good pitch, I'm not 100% on my actual voice. And when I say that, I don't mean I have a bad voice; I mean that it's like when you hear yourself on an answering machine and think, "do I really sound like that?!". Writing lyrics, to me, is kinda meh. The listener makes what they'll make of them. Even if they have a direction and an inherent meaning, they're still arbitrary and arguably the least important part of the song. That's not to say that they're not important, but when you look at how people from non-English speaking countries get into American and British music, it's probably not the lyrics that are selling them. Vis versa is true too. I think I like and agree with Frank Black's explanation for how lyrics are written. First and foremost, arbitrary. When you write the vocal melody, you sing certain syllables or sounds that stick after a while. Then, you write in words that fit with that.

Hopefully, this new song will be written and recorded soon. I write very slowly-hopefully that will change at some point. When I tell most people this, the feedback I get is, oh you should find someone to jam with. To this, I say no thank you. No matter how much I think my influences line up with another musician's, 9 times out of 10 (really 10 times out of 10 if you look at my track record), the influences are in no way reflective of the music the person makes. I realize that I'm not an expert on music, but I would expect musicians with good taste to write good music. More times than not, I find that whatever they've recorded on their myspace page isn't what I want to do at all, which then makes me wonder if there's anyone out there who isn't already in a band who wants to make good innovative music. This is by no means a post intended to be pompous and overblown; I still have a ways to go myself.

Moving on though before I go on a physics teacher/professor tangent! This week, I filled a new order at Parts and Labor as well as an out of state boutique (more details to come soon!). So, if you want to find DGAJ pieces that aren't on my Etsy site, you should stop by the shop! In other exciting news, I put in several orders this week for supplies and hope to start work soon on the Bioshock collection. Never fear! Pictures galore will soon be here. Speaking of pictures, I will soon be altering my light box and hope to show clearer high quality shots within the next two weeks...wish it was before then, but when you work, what can you do?

Also coming soon~pictures from We Make Stuff event from this past weekend and details about the Mexic-Arte Viva La Vida Fest (which will feature yours truly).

Action Jackson out!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Happy Birthday to Diamonds and Guns!

So, there's no exact date pinned down for when Diamonds and Guns actually began, but the force of DGAJ was unleashed for public consumption about a year ago when I opened an Etsy shop. Soon after, I vended at a few First Thursdays, participated in the Etsy Austin Holiday Bazaar, joined the EA team, did lots more shows... and voila! Here I am. I definitely have a love/hate relationship with looking back on a year in this way. It's a kind of personal recognition for what I've learned and the experiences I've gained, people I've met, etc. At the same time, though, I can't help but feel frenzied, thinking, "Omg. How has a year gone by that quickly?" It's pretty scary when you take that perspective. That all being said, I'm very grateful to everyone who has supported me from the getgo, all the people I've met who've been nothing but nice to me and have provided me with so much help and advice, and of course everyone who's noticed little ole me and my burgeoning jewelry line. If you are reading this, I'm sure I owe a thanks to you in some way or another.

And how am I celebrating, you may ask? Well, there's no cake at the moment. The picture from my 21st birthday(pre redhead days) will have to suffice in the meantime. That's a delicious looking cake though, right? Hmm...maybe there should be cake though. We'll see. I think I'm mostly celebrating by making more jewelry and churning out more ideas for everyone to see. Pictures are on their way, I promise! Also, for anyone interested, I'm hosting a sale in my Etsy shop through this Sunday.

Aside from the 1-year anniversary, I've been very very busy with guitar. I bought Pro Tools this past weekend with some old graduation money that needed to be used up. For anyone who hasn't made this leap, Pro Tools has a very broad/long learning curve and after looking at the manual, which might as well be War and Peace, I find myself wondering why I bought it. Overwhelmed as I am by this, I am digging deeper and deeper to summon my inner Winston Churchill to fearlessly take this on. I'm hoping to get a solid test recording in this weekend; I'll let y'all know how that goes. :) I'm currently also working with my brother to wrap up writing a song that I had previously made a loose structure for. It's interesting because we're working in a very technical music theory way as opposed to the route I took for the first song I'd written in whole, which I'm convinced had some sort of alternate power working toward its completion as I still have no explanation for how it came about. Such is writing music, right?

I'm hoping to make lots of new pieces this weekend (just in time for the We Make Stuff event next weekend at The Scoot Inn from 7pm-12am), get a test run in for PT, and get some writing done. It'll be tough since I have to go into work on Saturday and with this flu-ish thing I've got going on, but hopefully I'll be able to hit it all hard!

Action Jackson out.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Bringing Out My Inner Goth

Am currently in recovery from the Fantasy Realized show last night. Doing shows immediately after a day of work really takes it out of you! I haven't sold at any events since Austin Fashion Week in mid July, so I've had enough time to forget how much prep work goes into them (which is both good and bad). Thanks to everyone who came out~Bethany, Alec, Alyssa, Madison, and Leslie. Special thanks to Bethany for making some beautiful paintings for DGAJ. I hope to post some pictures soon to give y'all eye candy; Bethany's work is awesome. On a side note, when I do post some pictures, if any loyal readers have suggestions for galleries Bethany could submit her work to, please let me know!

I haven't actually been to Elysium since I went on a whim a few years ago for their Halloween event, which was super fun by the way. After going there for the Fantasy Realized show last night, I'm starting to wonder why I haven't been going more often. The vibe of the place is really calm, and I can't remember ever feeling so relaxed at a show as I was last night. I'm sure it picks up on the busier nights when Elysium transforms into an 80s night club filled with dancing maniacs. All the same, the tunes for the night were great- I know for sure I heard some My Bloody Valentine, Smiths/Morrissey, and New Order/Joy Division somewhere in there. I had a chance to chat it up with some of the other gals who were selling there. Be sure to check out their shops; these girls have great stuff:


I also got to talk music with a few folks who came out for the night, which is (and was in the case of last night) all the better for me when I'm able to say Siamese Dream is one of my favorite albums and it doesn't invoke a rage blackout from the other person . :) All in all, I'd have to rate last night as one of my favorite shows that I've done. Good location, music, crowd, fellow vendors/artists. I'll definitely use my long weekend for making new stuff and practicing. No rest for the weary!

Action Jackson out.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...