Making a CD is only 20% (totally random number, of course) about getting the music recorded. So much of your time is taken up by brainstorming, planning, executing ideas, finding the right people to execute your ideas…
So now that we have decided (98%) to make the album a self-titled CD, we are working on other decisions. Song order, for instance. I’ve heard from fellow musicians (Mari Black is one) how one struggles to create the best sequence – but now I’m starting to understand why.
What exactly does it mean to have the best sequence? There are so many different organizing principles: do we want the listener to finish the whole album? Do we want to tell a coherent story? Is it for the person who hears a few seconds from the beginning of the first or second song and would be interested enough to buy the whole thing? Or for the label representative, who might only listen to the beginning of the first song, would be interested in signing us?
Anyway, how do you know which songs are most likely to be hits? We are already pretty sure, for instance, that our producers/sound engineers differ in their preferences from us. And I bet, if we asked a few friends, each would have a different favorite.
So here we are, looking for signs, grasping at straws, hoping for a secret message to come from the wild heart of the universe and inspire us. It’s like betting at horse races – only with horse races, there is more adrenaline, I would think.