Monday, January 30, 2006

If you don't understand instruction manuals...

then you are to blame my mother. This is a theory according my husband. My mother was a technical writer for IBM for many many years ~ and her job was to translate what the engineers said into English for 'regular' people to read. His thinking is that from her manuals, other instruction manual writers based their outlines and their own instruction manuals, therefore, the path of blame, when you cannot understand instructions (they are convoluted, or you know, when you read the same sentence a dozen times and it still doesn't make sense...), then you should blame my mom.

I find this hysterical.

This came up again because Sunday I was asking Himself for help with my Cakewalk - Sonar Home Studio v. 4 program. I'd installed it and wanted to go through the tutorials but nothing would play because this pop up kept coming up saying I hadn't chosen a MIDI outlet, I'd click "Yes, choose midi outlet" and it would take me to a page where I'd click the only option, and the cycle would start again.

The instruction booklet wasn't much more help. To me, you have to have a basic understanding of a program and what it does before you can really use the instruction manual ~ because that is the way the instruction manuals are written. (This is when blame my mom came up) And there is a very helpful 'home studio' / 'recording at home' site with a great message board, very very helpful people etc... but you kinda need to know enough to ask specific questions, and you hopefully have enough information to understand the answers given.

We did figure out how to do what I want ~ which is: I'm now technologically at a place where I can sing along with a backtrack, record myself, and then create a CD -- so yes, I'm looking at recording a Demo CD for my traveling cabaret show for retirement centers. Wow. Now I have to really create a show. *very exciting!!*

The other thing I want to look at is creating my own learning tapes for quartet & chorus -- singing 4 parts and harmonizing with myself. How cool is that? I'm wondering if there is a way to record the bass in my own range and then change the key.... hmmmmm . While this is a goal of mine, there is no way I could do what TimsTracks does. OMG!! This guy is amazing... listen to his samples... it is all him, and some screaming overtones - for a Learning Track!

So where have I been?
Well, Friday night I went to a chorus members house who is also a Creative Memories consultant, and met some new people -- very nice gals -- yay!! Then drove to mom's with the Intuit software they wanted... then Saturday had the opportunity to observe a voice lesson with Charla Esser, the tenor of Rumors Quartet (1998 Queens of Harmony, SAI). She is awesome. The lesson was with the bass of my quartet, who is seriously pursuing musical excellence in herself - a sponge for better vocalizing information. There were some beautiful sounds being created in the lesson. I forgot I had wanted to be back in Tucson to go to Sonora Bay restaurant to hear Dayle Ann's quartet, Sparx at a fundraiser. They sang from 6 to 9 pm and were to received a percentage of profits from the meals between that time. Rats. I did have a fun day with Carol, though.

Sunday was no exception to the forgetting... I was supposed to go to pal Marie's Party Lite evening... and I love their stuff and really was looking forward to going ~ it was to start at 5pm. I was on the computer all day doing music stuff off and on, and at 6:30 remembered... and 3 minutes later the phone rang... geez... I felt so bad!!!

I'm really just caught up in barbershop at the moment, and everything else is kind of getting left behind. Need to dial back a little and find a better balance... not to be all or nothing.

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