This is the website of Neil McDougall, a musician/blogger/podcaster/bookie from Ayrshire.

52 Weeks of Music – Week 4: FAIL~!

Sorry folks, couldn’t get a song out this week.  A combination of a lack of anything remotely decent coming out of my brain/fingers and work/personal-related stuff continually getting in the way put paid to any chance of me getting anything that wasn’t utter shite out there.

However, the objective remains the same – 52 songs in 52 weeks, and I’ll do some catching up on my two weeks off work at the start of March.

In the meantime, you can download an album I co-produced and co-engineered back in 2006 (95MB .zip file).  The album is by a band called The Mocha Nights, who are, for all intents and purposes, no more.

My mate James did a new mix on the album to make it sound ‘massive and modern’.  While it’s not the way I would’ve mixed it (and hopefully will mix it one day…I still have all the master multitracks on my hard drive….)  it sounds great and I’m glad that the songs are out there again.  This band should’ve been massive, but things didn’t go the way they perhaps should’ve.

This entry was written by NeiloMac, posted on January 30, 2011 at 7:34 pm, filed under 52 weeks of music, life, music, recording and tagged , , , . Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.



52 Weeks of Music – Week 2: Bring Me Home

Well, here we are again, and after a few hours slaving over a hot DAW, I’m back with another all-new, all-original piece of music for your delectation.

This time, I’ve farted out a blatant Devin Townsend rip-off, all downtuning and delays and Lydian scales. The song is called Bring Me Home.

Download the song here – Bring Me Home

Some technical notes: this song uses my Yamaha RGX-420 Drop 6 baritone guitar, which is tuned down a fourth to B-E-A-D-F#-B as standard.  Unfortunately, this required me to use my 5-string bass, which, to be frank, sounds a bit crap compared to my Ibanez 4-stringer.  Anyone want to buy me a new 5-string bass?

Also, after polling for opinions on Twitter, I’m going to record a podcast where I talk about the songs and the recordings in a bit more detail.  More on that when it’s done, hopefully later tonight.  If not later tonight, then probably Saturday.

Anyway, enjoy the tunes, and be sure and tell yer pals!

This entry was written by NeiloMac, posted on January 11, 2011 at 5:25 pm, filed under 52 weeks of music, music, recording and tagged , , , , , . Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.



52 Weeks of Music – Week 1: Absentee

So, we’re off and running in this mad project of mine, with a bouncy wee ditty called ‘Absentee’.  I actually wrote this last week (hey, I can cheat a wee bit, it’s my project, so I make the rules.  :P), but I did the bulk of the actual recording today.  The only things left over from my original scratch demo were the MIDI drums, the keyboard solo and the guitar solo after the keyboard solo.

Download the song here – Absentee

The whole tune basically stemmed from the riff that makes up the intro and verses.  The frantic octave-ey riff that plays in the instrumental section…I’m not entire sure how I came up with that.  I just sort of…stumbled into it, I suppose.  Cool riff though.  🙂

I had some disasters recording it.  I actually had the whole thing done yesterday, but when I was doing one last save, Sonar crashed and somehow everything I had done went missing from the project file, even the stuff I had saved previously in the afternoon – the whole thing had basically reverted to the scratch demo.  Much rage ensued, as anyone who follows me on Twitter can attest to.  However, today, I picked up tools again and managed to get the song done without anything dying on me.

Yes, the vocals aren’t the greatest, the playing’s a wee bit iffy in spots and there’s a couple of bits of breathing left in the backing vocal bus, but I’m not bothered about that – the objective isn’t out-mixing the Black Album, it’s about writing and recording music and getting it out there, and so far, I’m succeeding.

Here’s to the next 51 weeks!

This entry was written by NeiloMac, posted on January 4, 2011 at 4:24 pm, filed under 52 weeks of music, music, recording and tagged , , , , , , , . Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.



ANNOUNCEMENT: My 2011 musical project

I mentioned on Twitter a few weeks ago that I had decided on what my big musical project for 2011 was going to be. Well, the time has come to announce my evil plot…

*FANFARE*

Neil-o-Mac’s 52 Weeks of Music!

*RAPTUROUS APPLAUSE* 

Ahem. 

What I’m planning on doing is writing, arranging & recording a new song every week during 2011.

Why am I doing this? Simple, really. I haven’t really done anything new in 2010, and I need to get the creativity going again. 

One of the reasons I’ve been so lax in making new music is that I’ve been holding myself to what’s probably too high a standard. I need to just *make music* and finish what I start. A finished song that’s maybe not as good as my usual is still more of an accomplishment than a half finished idea sitting in my Cakewalk Projects folder.

This is by no means a unique idea – head over to Mac Mufasa to see the work of a fella doing pretty much the same thing.  I have to say, I love the song title ‘Mac Gestures Made Me A Better Lover’.  Wish I’d thought of it.  🙂

No, it’s not a unique endeavour, but it should be fun to see how my songwriting and recording chops develop over the coming year.

As far as releasing the songs, I haven’t fully decided yet.  I’ll probably release the individual tracks on Bandcamp on a ‘pay what you like’ basis, and maybe do a series of monthly EPs or quarterly albums on iTunes.  I’ll probably stick the songs on YouTube as well, seeing as a lot of people consume music that way.

Thoughts, guys ‘n gals?  How would you prefer to consume my tunes? Any musical styles/lyrical subjects you’d like to see me tackle?  Any of you want to collaborate on something?  Hit me up at Neil (at) neilmcdougall (dot) com, tweet me (@NeiloMac) or leave a comment here on the blog.

This entry was written by NeiloMac, posted on December 27, 2010 at 10:34 am, filed under 52 weeks of music, music, recording and tagged , , , . Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.