Years ago when I started writing songs, I would record them on cassette tapes. I would label these tapes as “demos 1, demos 2, demos 3” and so on. Depending on the length of the songs, I could fit maybe 15-20 songs per tape.
Now I record songs digitally, so I never run out of space like I did with tape. This means that, theoretically, the current demo I’m working on (which is #14, for the record) could run on forever. However, I have decided to mark 20 songs as the cutoff point. (I’m a fan of even numbers. 10 would be too small, 30 too big.) Once I have 20 songs, I’ll move on to demos #15.
Periodically I will go back over all my material to see how I feel about it. Some songs get scrapped, others are vastly retooled, while others get only minor tweaks here and there. This act of scrapping songs has made the length of the demos uneven: some are down to 11 songs, while others still have close to 20.
Don’t ask me why, but for some reason this really stuck in my craw. So I decided to do something about it: I’m going to rearrange all my demos into track lists of 10 songs each. (Again, I’m a fan of even numbers!) In order to reach this goal, I have to do a few things:
1) Go through all demos one more time to determine which songs should be completely scrapped or just retooled.
2) Determine what songs should be done as a “full band” or as “solo acoustic” performances.
3) Combine all songs into 10-track “albums” that flow smoothly from beginning to end. This is probably THE trickiest step, as it requires a lot of thought.
As of this writing, I am actually done with steps one and two. For the moment I am relaxing on step 3 while I record videos of myself doing the acoustic songs. (See my blog about the YouTube channel for details on that.) Once those performances are done, it is time to move on to step 3!