October 23, 2005

NaSoAlMo is back!

EDIT: PLEASE NOTE: I am no longer running NaSoAlMo for 2006 and thereafter; Todd Gehman is. It's happening, but I'm not the guy to contact. The new temporary site is http://nasoalmo.pugetive.com/ , and nasoalmo.org will probably be working again soon. Good luck!

November is, of course, NaNoWriMo: National Novel Writing Month, Chris Baty's brilliant project in which participants write a 50,000-word novel in the space of a month. It is also, as it happens, National Solo Album Month, or NaSoAlMo; those brave souls who are up for it will write and record an entire solo album in the course of its 30 days. Last year was the first year we attempted it; now it's time for Round 2.

Everything I'm posting here is also at the nondescript but functional nasoalmo.org; probably best to link there if you're going to link, since that's going to be updated with everybody who's participating.


So, for the purposes of NaSoAlMo, what exactly is a solo album?
An album of music you have written, played and recorded entirely by yourself*. The shortest inarguably awesome album that a lot of people have heard is the first Ramones album, which is 29:09 long, so your solo album must be at least that long. Beyond that, its form and content are up to you.

*Since Ramones includes a cover of "Let's Dance," your NaSoAlMo album may, if you wish, include one cover of somebody else's song.

So is this a competition? Who's judging it? What do I win? What if it's not good enough? Do I have to send it in? Do I have to play it for anyone? Help!
No. This isn't a competition: this is a challenge. The winners are everyone who completes a solo album by November 30; what you will have won is that you will have made an album by yourself. You needn't play it for anyone else, and you certainly don't have to send it in, although I will probably listen to any you feel like sending me. It doesn't have to please anyone but yourself, if that; you are going for your own personal best here. The point is actually doing the work, starting and finishing the project. The deadline makes it easy!

Does it have to be professional-sounding?
Of course not. It doesn't have to be professional-anything; the point is the fun of making it. I encourage you to record with whatever you've got around the house.

How do I sign up for NaSoAlMo? And then what do I do?
Sign up by the end of October (oh, after is fine, okay, but wouldn't you rather have the whole month to work on your solo album?) by sending an email to signup [at-sign] nasoalmo.org, to let me know that you're in. Unless you indicate otherwise, I'll post your name and (if you have one) web site at nasoalmo.org. At 12:01 AM November 1, as you're noshing your Halloween candy, you can start work on your solo album. If you've finished by the end of November--when you've finished, rather, let's think positive here!--let me know that you've won, and I'll post a winner's hall of fame on the site. (And, if you like, a link to your finished album; totally up to you.)

Aren't you just ripping off Chris Baty and NaNoWriMo?
Yes. Yes, I am. Totally. Thank you for the inspiration, Chris.

Spread the word, and let me know if you have any other questions!

Posted by Douglas at October 23, 2005 1:23 PM | TrackBack
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