Categories
Audio Logic Music My Songs

Just Released a New Single “A Magic Lake”

My new single “A Magic Lake” went live today on all digital platforms.

Spotify:

Apple Music:

Youtube Music: https://music.youtube.com/watch?v=blXM0cN8Zk0&feature=share

Regular Youtube:

This Hypeddit Landing page has links to most of the places it is available for streaming or purchase. The top two, Spotify and Apple Music, I think account for something like 90% of music consumption these days, but as I come across others, I’ll add them both to that page and this one.

Categories
Audio Garageband Logic Music My Songs

Just Released Two New Songs On Spotify

My latest single just dropped on Spotify, Apple Music, Youtube Music, Amazon Music, really every streaming platform on Earth by way of Distrokid. It’s also on regular old Youtube.

It’s called “Just for a Moment,” and the B-Side is “Union Street (Hold On).” Give me a listen, like, and follow if you’re a fan.

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Uncategorized

Working on My Spotify Bio

Stephen Pickering is the ultimate MTV Gen X’er. He began High School in August of 1981, the same month MTV initially launched. But while absorbing English New Romanticism in the whimsical kind of way it was presented, his roots were firmly planted in the Hippy Woodstock generation of music and its impact on the culture from his older siblings’ vinyl collections. His favorite performance is Ritchie Havens opening of the Woodstock Festival itself. While in college at SMU the big four of Alternative Rock: REM, The Smiths, The Cure, and New Order had a tremendous impact on his musical sensibilities. He was in a college band then at SMU in Dallas whose entire repertoire consisted of those four groups.
“The Seventies groups were so good, even the non-Prog ones like Zep and Aerosmith, it made you feel you had no place in the industry,” he once told the Dallas Observer, “but the college audiences we played went wild over the simple 3 chord songs we were playing. I think there was a lot of pent up energy for the basics of Rock N’ Roll.”
He went on to tell them in ’87, “But these days, especially with U2, the emphasis is on the emotion rather than the virtuosity (Van Halen aside) and that opens up a new avenue of creativity based on one’s spontaneity. The creative process in the world of pop music became inviting and welcoming again. Everything that happened in the 80’s from Alternative to New Romanticism wooed you back in in a way saying, “It doesn’t have to be painful to be fun and worthwhile in addition to being valuable to the audience.”
“Just subjectively, as anyone would be in any field of endeavor, I want to get better at every aspect of my craft, but where I am today is fine and has value and I have no hesitation getting up on stage and expressing that.”

Categories
Audio Logic Music My Songs Uncategorized

Why You Must Dither When You Bounce

Even if you’re keeping the same bit depth.

The short of it is, that the bounce down, say from 96khz/24bit to 44.1/24bit is going to raise your True Peak and integrated LUFS by .2-3 points. When you apply dithering, it tames that gain to only .1 point. There are technical reasons for this, but the short of it is, my last track I recorded in 96khz/24 bit in logic and for what ever reason when I googled about Dithering, the impression I got was that it was only necessary if you were reducing the bit depth, say from 24 to 16, which has been the common practice for years. But lately Spotify, Apple Music, and I assume the others are streaming in 24-bit, so I didn’t feel the need to dither. But then I noticed that jump after bouncing. Dithering solved the problem, or at least most of it. There still was a .1 jump both in True Peak and iLUFS, but not the .2-.3 point jump that you get otherwise. There are three Dithering options in Logic Pro X bouncing: Regular, and two different “Noise Shaping” ones. I tried all three, but at least for my song, they sounded the same and gave me the exact same readings on all the parameters of my Youlean Meter. So I just went with regular, the first choice.

Here’s a comment I just wrote on a Youtube video by the brilliant “In the Mix” channel that I will link to at the end:

Looking at those guidelines, does it mean if you keep your TP below 2.0 Spotify will let you get away with a little louder LUFS? The most recent song I uploaded had a TP of -2.1 and an integrated LUFS of -13.4. Since I kept it below -2 TP do you think they’ll let the .6db “slide” so to speak (as we say here in the States,hehhe) or will they reduce it still? The guidelines are a little obscure. They say if you are going to master louder than -14LUFS then make sure your TP is below -2. So I wasn’t quite sure how to interpret that. For sure with indies like myself, the holy grail as it were is to have a sonic quality and loudness that competes with the majors. Oh another think I’ve learned: You’ve got to employ dithering, even if you keep the same bit depth on the bounce or mixdown. I accepted the Youlean measurements within the mix because they were the very last on the stereo buss chain. But the mix down from 96/24 to 44.1/24 even keeping wave lossless bumped up the TP and iLUFS by .2-.3 points. Employing dithering tamed those losses to only .1 And the readouts were exactly the same whether using regular dithering or the two “Noise Shaping” varieties. Cheers!

Stephen Pickering


Categories
1 Minute Tips Lifestyle Philosophy Pyschology Twitter

Three Pieces of Great Life Advice I Gleaned From Twitter Today

Sounds weird right? Twitter is the negative capital of the world it would seem. It seems almost like a magnet for negativity and arguing. Boy, I spent too much of my life during the last decade engaging in both, and still do at times, although I’m much more conscious of it.

#1 Chase Jarvis. I swear there are days, and today was one of them when I said to myself, I need to unfollow everyone on Twitter except for Chase Jarvis. He’s all you need! He’s like Bob Proctor 2.0 except he specializes in the Creative career. If you really wanted to turn your life around, and especially if your dream was to be a creative (artist, writer, painter, photographer, movie-maker, actually in today’s world creativity can be applied to any career) I think listening to Chase Jarvis non-stop would do the trick. I’m certain it would.

#2 This was an unlikely source and for an unlikely and controversial reason, but I thought the main point he made was so golden. It was from Tim Brando, a former Sports Broadcaster, who was really pissed off about the way the leadership in Athletics at the collegiate level has been so poor in the face of COVID-19. At any rate, and I do trust his judgement on such issues, but I know that point could be debated, but I thought his immediate cure was self-help gold:
“Do what you love. Get your mind off what pisses you off!” It may not sound sexy, but it works!

#3 Dolly Parton. Actually this one isn’t from twitter. I heard it last night, but I can’t remember from where, but I thought it really hit home. “Find out what you are good at, and do it on purpose.” It sounds too simple to be true, but that one sentence is almost all you need to know to not only be happy in life (if you are good at it, it’s usually something you enjoy in and of itself) and also make a good living that provides at the very least for your food and shelter and more than likely for a whole lot more.

Categories
Philosophy Pyschology Spiritual

What the Call in Mythology Means to Your Life Now

When you follow your calling, when you listen to what your soul is telling you you are here for, when you follow that “Theseus” thin thread out of the Labyrinth to the T, then the whole universe opens up and comes to your aide, and a magical track opens up that automatically takes you where you need to be, and the things you need to fulfill your destiny come to you automatically. Life becomes effortless simply by making a decision to say ‘yes’ to your calling which is more often than not, not respected by the outside world, and that’s one of the first hurdles.  

Categories
1 Minute Tips Blogging Code

How to Fix a Spotify Embed That’s Too Tall or Stretches Too Far Down the Page

I just released a new single last week, and when I created a new post about it, which included a Spotify embed of the single, even though the embed only contained two songs it stretched all the way down the page. When I google searched for a solution, I came to this page: Spotify embeds have large blank space at bottom on WordPress.org, but their solution, a bit of CSS code added to your Appearance >> Themes >> Customize >> Additional CSS didn’t work for me. As of this writing I’m using the TwentyTwenty WordPress theme.

At first I thought I found the answer simply by adding px after the height number the Spotify gives you for the code. In their code it’s just the number 180 in parentheses. I added a px at the end of that number, and that seemed to solve it, at least as an individual post, but on the main page of the blog at the domain level (as of this writing it is my most recent post), the problem still persisted.

Somewhere along the line of my search, I found someone had wrapped the <iframe> tag that Spotify gives you in a <figure> tag which I had never heard of, but that didn’t help either. What finally worked (at least it seems so at this moment, is keeping that px addition (to the height not the width) and then wrapping the whole thing in a div tag. Here’s what the final code looks like:

<div><figure><iframe src="https://open.spotify.com/embed/album/5r5zBUsuM7tsJtDC3x0AE9" width="300" height="180px" frameborder="0" allowtransparency="true" allow="encrypted-media"></iframe></figure></div>

You can see I went ahead and left the figure tag in there. I don’t know if that makes any difference or not. But the above code seems to have solved my problem as of this writing at least in WordPress and the particular TwentyTwenty theme I’m using at the moment. Just replace your own Spotify code within this nest and add px at the end of the height value and see if it works for you.