A Song is Born (Songwriting Session)

Here is a song being born. I’ll do something more with this melody. We came up with three parts (that I can derive from this workout), and I’m sure I’ve got some lyrics lying around somewhere!

I usually write songs words-first, so it’s fun to just play with melodies and come up with fun-sounding things, musically, first, then deal with the words.

This video happened after our drummer left and Brandon Raimondo, who plays guitar, started playing drums for awhile. As it goes along, we’re coming up with this stuff for the first time as you hear it, and trying to let the cream rise, so to speak. Collaborating with someone, to the point of synchronizing with them, is really fun!

Brandon Raimondo on drums, Mark Urso on guitar (Hagstrom Viking, D’Addario nickel wound 10’s), recorded on a Canon XA-30 with mounted stereo Rode Videomic X.

About The Recording

Compression is through the camera: I did nothing to the file out of the camera. If the drums, or general mix, are loud you can really start to hear the camera’s compression, but this is a superb recording at small-gig volume, which is actually quite a high volume with the “auto” setting.still sounding quite fine.

If the event were even just a little louder, or if I were making a professional recording, I would switch that audio setting for both channels to “manual,” which would require me to more carefully monitor the inputs to make sure they don’t overload. The best way to use this microphone with a low to moderate volume level will usually be on “auto” on the camera. But the XA-30 camcorder provides AGC gain control even when you switch to manual, which is a cleaner way to record. Be careful to only use AGC as a fail-safe; keep the levels away from maximum.

AGC buffers the high volumes, but does not push up the low ones.


This microphone produces very high quality recordings in the field!

Meanwhile …

We’re working on our “dancers,” developing dance songs! I’ll work on this one too; stay tuned!

This video shows the “middle” of the process … ideas forming … you can “hear” the song just trying to get out! Because this file was not processed for small speakers, it might sound best turned up loud! 🙂

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