FIRST BLOG: On professional recording… and a new song for you!

Thank you for visiting my website and for making it this far! I hope that you like what I have to share. Hopefully this blog will allow me to express my ideas about music and life to everyone in a clear, meaningful way.

I would like to use this first blog entry to share a story and a song. Back in July (2015), I applied for some composition work, which involved writing music for a new phone app. Now, I do not want you to think that this story is about me having sour grapes because I was rejected…! I also would like to add that if the person who I sent my application to happens to be reading this, this is not about me having a go at you either.

So, moving on… I was, in fact, rejected. And I got a really nice rejection email! It was a rejection email that was personal and had real feedback!! Exciting times. The email stated that there was nothing wrong with the music I had submitted, but that others who had applied had submitted really professional sounding work. The closing piece of advice was this: “if you can get into the studio and record, your future applications would present much better and the focus can be on the music, not the quality.”

Let’s take the focus away from me and my application; let’s now talk in general about that closing piece of advice. It is saying that if, as a composer, you have a portfolio of professional studio recordings of your work, only then will the people who are reviewing your applications be able to actually focus on the music. That is, if you do not have access to a professional recording studio, your music is essentially meaningless? Perhaps “meaningless” is a bit extreme (OR IS IT?), but the point still stands that if you are unable to professionally record, your music will not be taken seriously. Is this a fact? In all cases?

The fact is that it is classist and unfair to expect everyone to have the resources to make these professional recordings come into existence (especially emerging artists). The question that next comes into my mind is this: is the music industry classist and unfair? Probably. Is society classist and unfair? Probably. 

To finish off this post, I’d love to share this recording with you – it’s a piece I’ve written for SSA choir called ‘The Poppy’, text by Jane Taylor (1783–1824). It’s about the value I place on humility and unpretentiousness. It is here being sung by myself (alto), my mum (soprano 2) and my twin sister (soprano 1), and was recorded in a room with shit acoustics, on an iPhone. I hope you can look past the quality and focus on the music. Is this being overly idealistic? Probably!

Thanks again for reading and listening. Until next time... 

Rachel :)