Time to Build!

Today marks one month until the deadline of my final podcast project…

What do I have to do?

Between now and the 4th of May, I have to complete 9 episodes, write a commentary and write a report outlining and analysing the artefact and how I dealt with the project throughout the year.

Now there isn’t exactly much time, so I really have to work! Annoinglying last week was the Conservatoire’s Frontiers Festival and I had to finish up a module in Professional Development and complete my final Compositions for my Portfolio.

Now those are out of the way, I aim to have my focus on this project!


Because of limited time and also the way I have restructed the format and material — I will be uploading the series onto Bandcamp. This may not be the ‘pure’ Podcast/audio doc medium like iTunes Podcasts.

However, the ability to download is still available, which was what I had set out to do at the very beginning of the process (back in May 2016). Another reason for using bandcamp, is that a few of the 9 episodes will not be as ‘informative’ and instead will be dealt with a more creative approach.

Series Structure

On Sunday a friend of mine, Sam Leith Taylor helped me plan a new format/structure for the series/release.

In total there are 9 episodes, which at present are in the following order:

  1. Introduction
  2. Approach
  3. Motivation
  4. ‘Stuff’ (it is not yet confirmed what exactly this will be, however at the moment, I think it will be using the ‘best’ answers in isolation. Some may disagree with this approach, for example hardline conceptualists or people fascinated to sticking to economic material all of the time, however I believe that there are some great responses and insights that should see the light of day)
  5. Society
  6. A Tortured Life (this includes lifestyle, whether they are a tortured soul, etc)
  7. Sleep (this will be a more ‘creative’ one)
  8. Reflections (this will be an episode either each of the pariticpants or selected participants on what they learnt from the process, which I asked after each interview)
  9. Conclusion (soley my own narration)

So that is the plan — I need to try and ensure that the material is as best it can be. If not then I will need to chase up some interviewees and get some more material from them (this has been suggested by Michael Wolters and Paul Zaba).

Mixing and Mastering

When I began the project, I planned to do all of the editing myself (as well as, at one point, having 19 episodes in the series — oh how naïve I was…). My thoughts on this have recently changed, after having a discussion with Steve Halfyard about a final project a few years ago that was in a similar medium.

Essentially, the person had mixed it themselves, but did a bad job of it (what also didn't help was the dry narration and leaving all of the clips unedited), as a result this left a bad mark on his artefact. Now, I’m not necessariy doing this project for the grade, however I don’t want to screw up 4 years of education in Composition over a thing that is essentially a piece of documentation…

So I have enlisted the help of Music Tech student James Shields, who will mix and even all of the levels for me. This takes some of the work off of my shoulder and means that I can concentrate on the narration, the structure, etc. When I complete an episode I will send them one by one, rather than sending the whole series.

I will still edit each of the sound files though, taking out any, ‘Errrs’.

Frustrations and Things I have Learnt

So I have been living with this project for approximately 11 months now, and there have been many twists and turns.

Reflecting now towards the beginning of the end, there are several things that I have learnt from this project that I will take forward:

  • I enjoy interviewing: Despite issues with what I have been looking for and the number of hours that I have spent interviewing composers the same question and then restarting, I still enjoy it! After the project and the degree I would like to begin work on a smaller scale, blog/text-based interview series.
  • I work best with non-sensical things or at least a set format: At the start of the project, I was slightly aware of this, but through the process I am know aware that I find difficulty in creating an argument/information. At the beginning of the project I wanted to challenge myself, but I suppose in some respects it’s fallen back on me.
  • I don’t want to do spoken/audio interviews after this: From feedback I have had issues with my speaking voice, hence why for the future I am interested in moving towards blog/text based interviews.

That’s all for now, it is likely that there will be another blog post soon, where I have hopefully at least built one or two episodes and sent them to James, begin work on my appendices, my report and my commentary.

So until then, see you later, C me later.

Patrick Ellis, 4th April 2017

One clap, two clap, three clap, forty?

By clapping more or less, you can signal to us which stories really stand out.