Self-Doubt

Self-Doubt

metalfoot's picture

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Demo: 

Collaborators: 

Liner Notes: 

Impostor syndrome is a beast. Struggling hard and feeling like I'm going to let everyone down this year. Totally stopped making music altogether for a few weeks--which for someone as usually 'prolific' as I've seemed to be is not exactly the normal order of things--and forced myself out of dormancy last week to lead up to 50/90.

This is morning voice. I have not had anything to drink yet this morning. Lovely, eh? The cough in the song is real. I didn't realize the mic would pick it up but there you go. Live takes for the win?

UPDATE:
Now with added orchestration courtesy of levesinet!

Lyrics: 

blank white page
blank in mind
this first stage
hard to find

empty head
empty brain
all I feel
total drain

Do I have any songs left?
That's what I ask myself, staring at the empty page
Do I have any songs left?
And if I have them, are they worth letting out of their cage?

here's a few
rhyming words
what to do?
So absurd

Do I have any songs left?
That's what I ask myself, staring at the empty page
Do I have any songs left?
And if I have them, are they worth letting out of their cage?

I've lost my talent
Or at least I've lost my nerve
I can't give my thoughts
The voice that they deserve
I've disappointed everyone time and again
And that's what's going through my head when
I ask myself

Do I have any songs left?
That's what I ask myself, staring at the empty page
Do I have any songs left?
And if I have them, are they worth letting out of their cage?



Please keep your comments respectful, honest, and constructive. Please focus on the song and not the demo.

Comments

oneslowtyper's picture

Hi Alex, good to see you again my friend. Remember, when your voice is hoarse you will get another voice that is hard to match again under normal conditions. The results are usually unexpected and better than you might think, which is the case here. This reminds me of when Paul McCartney purposely tried to get his throat raw and hoarse to sing "Oh Darling"... or so I was told.

RalphCarl's picture

Crippling self doubt and empty thoughts are perfectly acceptable inspiration in themselves. Nice turnaround. Impostor Syndrome sounds like a good title for a song. A break from music sometimes spurs a burst of creativity when you resume. Enjoyed your song, and enjoy your summer.

Coolparadiso's picture

Very apt opener. Nicely done. Lets hope the main answer is YES. Nice work.

There are soooo many things that I relate to with your song. For starters, like you, I've had to wrestle with just how many more songs I have in me. I've thought about how many people I've let down, and how that's affected musical friendships. I've had to deal with morning voice (admittedly my MV is a tad deep...almost Barry White-like). I've often coughed through songs, too. Still, it's good to know that if you're pushing through, I can do the same!

billwhite51's picture

i have plenty of ideas for songs, and lyrics are no problem, but i feel i have exhausted my musical ideas and keep reworking the same roadwork. when your voice is shitty, it sounds a lot better than my voice when it croaks, but i like to keep the crummy sounding voice when its all i have. you sound good here. and the song reminds me a little of oasis crossed with some better bands. a swell opener for the deluge to follow, when all those songs you have left come pouring out.

pearlmanhattan's picture

my feelings exactly!!! I could have written this - word for word - thank you for voicing my irritating feelings I could say out loud.

Fuzzy's picture

I think your "morning voice" suits the theme of the song perfectly.
I like the cough - again, suits the theme of the tune.
Great playing and chord progression!

You know what? I'm not sure anyone is ever really supremely pleased with their tunes.
I know I'm not.

Really great start!

Would you like me to add you as collaborator and I can update the post with this version?

levesinet's picture

Yes! If it's okay with you. I have a feeling I won't be able to write much music this summer.

Stephen Wordsmith's picture

I know what this is literally about- however, there is a universality to the language that could make this song serve as a metaphor for something much broader - 'Do I have any songs left?'. I ask myself something very similar on quite a regular basis.

The morning voice, weary yet determined, suits the subject matter perfectly. And it's also a great fit with the layered instrumentation, which booms or beckons very appropriately. The parts in which it is allowed to swell remind me a little of the Beatles' 'A Day in the Life' - only the foothills of that mountainous crescendo, of course, but it is equally pleasing.

Well done, both of you. There are no impostors here.

cblack's picture

Hey! Reminds me of Nirvana, actually. Just that general melancholy feeling trying to burst through in a musical way. Honestly, I didn't even notice the lyrics - I was too focused on the feel of the piece. Definitely got a "small venue live" type feeling to it... Intimate, yet immortal.

Once again I find myself jealous of your talents... Well done!

wacha's picture

I love the moody feel this song. I am sucker for a song about song writing, you did a really nice job with this. I love the addition of the orchestration it adds a nice surprise when it comes in,

I think you've found a "pitch" range that works for your God given voice. And, I feel, (though am often wrong Smile ), -- that it is fully possible to "call it up" when needed. I can't know if you've ever looked into being conscious about how your head, face, throat feel ... but it's no different (so to speak), than when bending a guitar string, you can feel it good or bad (and of course hear the "boink" if miss the bend Smile ) -- So, something to consider, if never did. There's many snake-oil salespeople who advise on vocals, -- yet, there's only a few limited things to explore; and again, you may be already aware so leave it there.

-- So, good one! Smile

spirulence's picture

This lit up my morning here in SF - nice singing and additional orchestration! Has a classic vibe that I really enjoyed. Could easily be played in concert with a symphony. Looking forward to a wonderful 50/90 full of Alex tunes!

@levesinet What libraries are you using for orchestra?

levesinet's picture

Mostly EastWest QL Symphonic Orchestra Gold.

Spectrasonics Trilian (Fender bass)
XLN Audio Addictive Drums (basic drum kit)
EastWest QL Symphonic Orchestra Gold (violins, celli, French horns, trumpets, trombones, glockenspiel, harp, tambourine, Chinese tam tam, timpani)
EastWest QL Goliath (Rhodes piano, conga drums)

cindyrella's picture

I am happy you both got this together! Enjoyed this all the way through.

Klaus's picture

Never has self-doubt produced such a good song. Melody and chords are pure Brit-pop and @levesinet's orchestration adds a big glorious anthem vibe just right for the song.

Your morning voice... well I bet it felt awful to sing this, but it actually works well, especially at the starts of a phrases.

Like Stephen, I hear a more universal theme in the lyrics: "do I have anything to give" and that is a very touching question. And people's comments are the most interesting! You certainly have struck a nerve here. Klaus likes it! Smile

helen's picture

This is great. @levesinet's additions have really brought out the anthemic nature of the song. Great job, both!

ductapeguy's picture

Wowza. At the beginning, I was expecting a straight ahead metalfoot acoustic one take. The full orchestration knocked my socks off.

Edward Roussac's picture

I like the acoustic guitar chords, even though they and your voice seem a little out of tune (it doesn't hurt the song though). When the bass and drums come in, they add some depth to the music. The orchestra arrangement is nice and adds more depth.
I like the lyrics in the chorus, which seem quite humorous. When it stops on the C chord instead of ending on the tonic which is E minor, the listener is left hanging.
The overall doubtful mood reminds me of some of Nirvana's work.

ballyhoot's picture

I’d like to write a bunch of insightful commentary but I’m on my phone and hate typing on the stupid tiny keyboard.... but listened this morning and liked this a lot. The vocal tone suits well; structure and instrumentation are very good. Thanks for sharing!