Initial Reactions to Making an Album

I finished my album so I decided to write about it

(This stream of consciousness “diary entry” was written around midnight this morning)

So I just finished editing/mixing down the LP. Or album. I still don’t know what the specific classification is and I’ll probably figure it out later. I started out calling it an LP, but I gradually felt more and more like I wanted to fully stake ownership on the work, saying that this is what I wanted it to sound like. I think that was my thinking while recording it, now after hearing it a bit, I kinda want a bit of a do-over in a place with better sound recording and someone who actually knows what they’re doing at the board.

I’ve been saying that I started writing this album after my minor breakdown after the Fire’s playoff loss, but the writing has been an ongoing project. I think the oldest song in there is about 2 years old and there were a couple that I could’ve used but ended up not doing that were even older.

The biggest thing that this taught me was that I needed to find a way to help myself. And I think that that’s a main theme in the more recent songs that I wrote: the realization that the cavalry isn’t coming, I have to step up or else nothing will happen. Going back to waiting for a guitarist to help me, finding one, then losing one, and then just hoping I’d find another. I wanted to create music, but I let my own mental limitations get in the way. I knew I couldn’t play guitar. I knew I wasn’t ready to just release my music. But at some point I just decided, fuck it.

I mostly released “A Flare Gun, A First Aid Kit, A Cell Phone, and A Boat LP” as a joke, but doing so led me to finding out that people might actually like the music that I enjoy doing. So I decided to learn guitar. Being almost purely self-taught, I probably have terrible habits and am probably doing many things wrong, but I was having fun playing.

I think it’s an interesting contrast between the sound that I made and the emotion that I felt making the album/LP. I was writing and playing and practicing using really pretty depressing music, but doing so made me so happy. I was able to take songs that I grew up with and pound them out. I was taking pieces of art made by others and putting them through my own filter. How could I not be excited? And when it came time for me to write the chords to my old songs or write completely new ones, I was fucking stoked! I think the only one that didn’t put a smile on my face when I was done writing was the one I wrote the day after the playoff loss.

I’m writing all over the place now, but I’m writing because this isn’t something that’s big. I haven’t signed with any record label yet and I don’t exactly have friends in those kinds of places who could help do that for me. No one’s going to interview me, so I’m going to interview me. This album is a first step into a great unknown. I don’t know if people will like it, but unlike the previous release, I’m damn proud of it. I don’t know if I’ll be able to continue doing it, but at this moment in time music is all I want to do.

But maybe that’s the point here. I said that I knew a lot of things last year, but within the past 4-6 months I remembered that I don’t really know anything. I’ve always told myself that true wisdom comes with admitting you don’t know and I always remember that too late. Fear is what forces us to not admit the unknown, because what if there’s something horrible there?

Fuck it, I’m getting too philosophical right now, but that’s what this is doing to me and honestly it’s what goes through my head most of the time when I start writing about my feelings.

Bottom line: I’m really happy about this accomplishment and all I want to do is more of this shit.

I’ve still got a formal announcement and a shit ton of DIY marketing to do, but I’m just glad that I’ve got something down.

I Mean, You Could Call It A Comeback If You Want To

What I miss?

*Looks at the calendar*

*Looks at date on last blogpost*

Well shit!

I paid around a hundred bucks for this site and now that it’s my only outlet, I guess I better use it. But first, I guess I should address what’s happened with me. My Twitter’s been dead since mid-October and I didn’t just leave for no reason, there were some circumstances that led me to just taking off. So let’s get some house-cleaning over with before I dig into any hard stuff:

First, this should be of no surprise to anyone who’s seen any of the post-season stuff from them, but I’m no longer writing at SB Nation with Hot Time. I don’t really have much to add about that at the moment, there’s going to be more on that later in this piece. What that means right now for this blog, though, is that I’ll definitely be using this space to talk about the Fire whenever I feel like it. I was already planning on it before, but this kinda forced my hand a bit here.

Second, I was actually working on a massive article during this hiatus; but it’s seriously been so unwieldy and difficult to complete that I’m gonna kinda throw in the towel on it. It was going to be some unnecessary, way too in-depth analysis of St. Vincent’s recent MASSEDUCTION album. Was going to be pretty cool, but I think I lost the plot in it and never finished.

Third, on that topic, I’ve been doing a ton more music stuff. Why? Because I gave up soccer for basically that entire period of time. Instead of watching the rest of the MLS Cup Playoffs, I’ve been off learning guitar and attempting to write more music. I just felt like it was the right thing to do, especially after the really positive feedback I got from the LP I released a couple months earlier. I’ve actually gotten to a pretty good level, so I’m really pleased with the time I spent. I’ve also found a couple of new bands that I’m excited to talk about when I end up talking about music here.

So where did this shit come from? On the night of October 25th 2017, I had what I can only really describe now as some sort of emotional/nervous breakdown. There was the combination of a couple things: some budding anxiety issues that I’d picked up recently, mixed in with some creeping depression from probably the same places. I’d just started college recently, so there was definitely something there. But the big thing that broke me was the Fire.

I’ve constantly talked about my relationship with the Fire as being something so extremely close and unbreakable. While it looks romantic and seems like an amazing thing to be so much of a fan to care that much about the club, it wasn’t healthy. From the point that I had started working for Hot Time, the Fire were just my identity. Sure, I could talk about other things than the Fire, but I would always try to find some way to bring it back around to them. It was all I talked about, all I cared about, and all I thought about. That’s not a good thing. It’s not healthy to let something that you can’t control control you.

So we get to the night of the game and I am more than just a ball of nerves, I am a planet of nerves. I was unable to stop shaking that entire night. I thought I was just excited, but actually I was having a full-on panic attack. I was late getting there, raising that panic even higher. The Fire start losing, bad, and that sends me even higher. I am unable to control myself well enough. I couldn’t think clearly. I was snapping. My psyche is falling apart the same way as the team’s season is, in a flaming ball of shit. Then I go to Twitter.

Here’s a lesson for everyone to know: No one ever knows the context of your tweets to a person if you don’t explicitly state them. Even then, it’s really hard to discern that when you send 16 of them in a row. I decided to tweet at an MLS media person who I had seen and talked to at the game. I sent them some massive number of tweets all explaining each and every intricate tactical failure made in the match. I know now what I wanted to get at, but I should’ve waited. I shouldn’t have just attacked somebody with that sort of shit. There was nothing malicious behind it, just someone losing their fucking mind trying to talk themselves through horrible decisions made by someone else.

So this is my apology to her and to Hot Time. It was entirely unprofessional what I did. I knew it the moment someone called me out on it. I understand what happened and I want to move past it. But that wasn’t the only thing that kept me away from soccer and Twitter, just because the team lost, wasn’t why I decided to just ghost on all of my friends in the Fire community.

As I was saying earlier, I had an unhealthy relationship with the Fire. I still kind of do, and will possibly continue to if I don’t work on it. I hitched my happiness onto the workings of others. That’s not a good way to live. It’s this weird dependency that I’ve developed on dependency. Throughout my entire life, I’ve been relying on others and hoping to rely on others; but never really relying on me.

For the longest time, I didn’t really know what to do with the songs that I wrote because I didn’t know guitar. Then I met a guy who said he could play guitar for my songs and it sounded great. Then he left and I was left knowing what this stuff sounded like with accompaniment, without the accompaniment. Only recently have I finally learned how to play guitar and this has been the happiest I’ve been in a long time. I can finally rely on myself to do things for me. My happiness isn’t coming from others, it’s finally coming from me.

So in the near future, expect me to talk more about music and stuff like that. I probably won’t try to take on a beast like that MASSEDUCTION analysis, but I’ll definitely tell you about my new favorite band. And in terms of soccer coverage, I wouldn’t expect me to get back in the swing of doing that sort of stuff until way early preseason, some time around the draft. As I said, I’d like “me” to be defined by me, not someone else. It’s gonna take time and it’s gonna be difficult, but I really hope this is the first step towards a better me.

Quality Content

This is the first article of a hopefully long and fulfilling career of articles. But before I start off, I should probably explain why I made this and what I’m about.

About a week or so ago I paid about a hundred bucks for this blog. I haven’t done shit with it in that time. While the cost of having the freedom to write what you think without having ads you don’t want getting in the way may be priceless, I want my money’s worth out of this thing. So this is the first article of a hopefully long and fulfilling career of articles. But before I start off, I should probably explain why I made this and what I’m about.

First, why this is a thing. I started writing for Hot Time in Old Town in August of last year. In that time I’ve been able to grow my digital voice (or at least develop it) and really talk about the thing I love: Chicago Fire soccer. It continues to be an amazing opportunity and I continue to love every second of it. But just writing about the Fire gets a little repetitive and I kind of wrote myself into a corner with the template and format that I work off of over there, even though I was the one who made it for myself. I wanted to write about other things and get creative about it. The Fire may be the biggest thing that I love, but I also love music, I love comedy, and I’m really into economics for some strange reason. I like the idea of just sharing my opinion and sharing opinions with people, because that’s what opinions are for. You share them and you shape them, either adding your own to other people’s or taking some from some other people. But I’m getting too focused on that right now when that could be a story for another time. Main point here is that I wanted to give myself as much freedom as possible to write about whatever the hell I want to write about. So let’s get into what I plan to write about.

I’m an 18 year old community college student whose really only defining characteristic is my personality. I can blend into a crowd pretty well and I would be pretty forgettable if I never opened my mouth. Let’s just say I’m not a very attractive dude and leave it at that. But that personality though! I have at least a vague interest in almost everything. I call myself a singer-songwriter even though I’m just barely learning guitar, but I still do have an LP out if you want to check it out. I’m looking into writing comedy for possible stand-up, I like acting, I would love to write a screenplay. Basically I’d call myself an entertainer, as that’s really the only way to cover everything. I also like talking about it and analyzing it. Ever since I started writing music I found myself listening to music for certain ways to help my own writing, whether it’s wordplay or using certain imagery to convey a message. Once I started thinking about that stuff critically, I started looking at other things critically like film and TV. I would never call myself an expert on anything except maybe the recent history of the Chicago Fire, but I feel like I always have a different point of view on things than everyone else.

I think I’m also very good at talking around a subject without ever touching on it.


What’s that? That was a .gif (pronounced however you like). You should probably get used to them because they’re one of my main forms of communication.

Oh, you mean what was that? That was a tone shift. This stream of consciousness style is probably going to be more in line with how the rest of this blog will sound. There are going to be some parts where I’ll be very professional, possibly well-researched, and maybe even not swear as much. Then there will be the more common points where this entire thing will look like a fucking mess, but trust me it might be enjoyable.

So I think I covered things as well as I could. You guys know why this blog is here, what I’m about, and what to really expect from me writing-wise. Honestly, if you read what I write consistently, you’ll kinda get to know me and get used to how I do things. All there’s left to do is tease what the next article will be:

Unnecessary Over-Analysis (The first in a long series)


See you sometime in the near future.