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Creating presets for the instruments and effects that you use often can help you solidify a consistent sound, and help eliminate extra time spent changing parameters in stock presets. Personalized presets can also be helpful when tracking vocals and instruments by giving you a head start in the rough mixing process. The more confident you can be in your presets, the less you have to worry about laying down tracks that just don’t sound right.

My wife and I had moved to Nashville and were just starting the process of buying a house. We talked to several lenders to get pre-approval (my understanding was that it made the process go smoother), and every conversation went something like this.

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Imagine a world where every time a phone rings, your music plays. Creating and selling ringtones on iTunes can be a fun as well as a profitable way to repurpose your most popular or favorite songs. Even though you won’t earn royalties each time the phone rings, the good news is that you can earn royalties each time your ringtone is downloaded.

Because I’m personally so influenced by Nick Cave and Leonard Cohen, I’ve spent a lot of time reading poets like Sappho, Auden, Berryman, and T.S. Eliot, and listening to Jewish and Christian liturgical music, which were all major influences on them. Cohen’s “Suzanne” oozes with classical, religiously steeped references.