Friday, December 30, 2011

Saturday, December 24, 2011

New Monitors!!

Hey guys check out what's happening with this HERE!

Alesis M1 Active Mk2 monitors

Thanks,
Merry Christmas

-Brandon

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Voice of your guitar

This is a lesson I am practicing on from GMC. I just learned it a few hours ago. I've been practicing almost straight. I am improvising on top of the lesson and using my soul - just playing what comes to mind. It's not spot-free, as I said I am still practicing it. Compare it to the teacher himself, Cosmin Lupu.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Divine Appointment

Yesterday I had an opportunity to help someone that seemed to be at first just doing my job. I work as a cashier at our small Walmart. This elderly lady came through the line and purchased a lot of merchandise filling about 10 bags. Another associate was free at the time and she offered to get another cart. I kindly told the elderly lady I would help her get her things to her vehicle. When I had checked and bagged all the customer's items there were only three bags in the customer's original cart. My associate said, "Oh, we could transfer these bags into this cart and you'll have just one cart." I still felt I should help the customer with the cart even though she only had one cart now. It didn't feel right to back out and I had a tugging in my heart.

I put on a bright-colored vest and said to the elderly lady, "Lead the way." I followed after the lady while pushing her surprisingly light cart. As I unloaded her merchandise into the backseat of her truck she thanked me several times for helping her. She revealed she had trouble with her arms and already had a shoulder replacement. It was then the Holy Spirit revealed to me this was why I was to carry out this lady's items.

The elderly lady asked me my name before she bid me good-day and closed her driver-side door with a smile. I couldn't help but smile back. That was a divine appointment I didn't miss, and I gained a friend. ;)


-Brandon

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Been a while...

Hey guys,

It's been a while since a proper post so I thought I would do that. Morning coffee is brewing now. It is 5:03 in the morning - I just got up about 15 minutes ago. I have the morning shift (6:00 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.) at Walmart. Good thing I only live a mile from the place.

What have I been up to lately? I have been composing like never before. This is why my YouTube channel is not really active. I guess you could say it's somewhat active, but not like every week am I putting a video or two out. But that's hopefully okay with the majority of the people. Of course, that's not to say anybody will ever know the reason of my absence - the stats of my blog show not many views are going on. hehe. Sometimes I wish I were famous, but then I think of this...if I were famous I don't think I could very easily be personal with as many people as I have been in the past, present, and future....ehh...wrist cramp...neck pop...so early to be writing......COFFEE IS READY!.........ahh good. Yes, I want this to be a relaxed post than my normal thought-out "articles."

So about my composing...I am currently working on another song that doesn't have a name yet. It's saved under "Unnamed 7-8 song." 7-8 refers to 7/8 time signature. But the computer won't let me put the slash, dang it. I know why though...computer geek.. lol. The song starts out in 7/8 and then switches to 4/4 time and even slowing down from 140 bpm (Beats per minute - the tempo) to 110. It gives a nice, heavy feel. Then after headbanging a bit, I give a pause and it goes to 6/4 timing and back up to 140 bpm - fun! fun! Feels much like 3/4 time signature on steroids, and if you are familiar with fractions then you can see why. Beyond the 6/4 part I am not sure what to do next. I don't know when it could go back to the beginning theme. Not sure how to turn it around. I'm new to Progressive Metal, as I guess this would be called.

I've pretty much finished a song called "New Wonders." It's kinda soft compared to the hardcore stuff I usually produce. I haven't posted it on my SoundCloud yet, because I am not satisified yet. Boy, I can't wait to get those mixing speakers for Christmas! Oh did I tell you? They are Alesis MK2 active speakers. I will be able to provide mixes that are acceptable to the ears. :D I am not a pro, but all I have to work with now is my iHome speakers, and then my car stereo speakers (old Pioneers) if I want better and final quality. I hope to also come out with a Christmas special just like I did with the July holiday. I want to have several songs as a melody. I am going to have to bite the bullet and know that I have to release the song by Christmas. I can't wait until I get the speakers - literally. I might not have the necessary time or know-how to set up the thing and mix it really fast and upload it. :) It'll be fine though.

I do have big plans that will be a positive affect on you guys in many ways. I want to purchase an HD camera of some kind. I want to go to 1080p. Just think, so many of you who only know me through YouTube will see me for the first time ever in HD!! LOL funny to think about but true. And I want to also begin selling my music on BandCamp.com. This will be after I get mixing speakers at least first. Won't that be cool? I will mainly start out letting you hear it on YouTube, and then you can go purchase it if you want to support me. How's that?

And a couple of side notes, I know that I want to upgrade my SoundCloud to a subscribing account so I can have more flexibility. I also want more RAM, so that will mean I can edit videos better. I will be purchasing this before the HD camera. I have 4 GB, but my computer will take 8. I looked on crucial.com.

About requests....yes, I know I have been lax...it's just so hard for me to sit down and fulfill these when I have a song idea, which is like almost every time I play guitar. :D Or I at least feel inspired. I will eventually get to most of these requests I hope. Here's what I have:

Awake and Alive lesson (now available)
Golden Sun theme song
Golden Sun TLA theme song FULL
Kutless "Take Me In" Tutorial (bodiex1)
Hillsong - United album songs?

Heehee, yeah, it's on my desktop in a .txt file. I have had requests in the past that were songs of bands I had never listened to or not very familiar with. I do turn down some requests, but not all. If you have a request, let me know and I will check it out or at least give it some thought. It's usually when I say to myself, "I think I could do that," is when I accept. The ones I don't accept are usually ones I know I would have to seriously learn, and I know I don't currently have the dedication to learn any and all songs.

I do have so many unfinished songs, I don't know if they are scrap forever, but we'll see where it all leads. ;)
Well, I'm going to end this now so I can completely get ready for work - I gotta proofread this anyway.

-Brandon Burch

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Dollar Warfare

Hey guys!! Check out this video me and my brother released on my YouTube channel today.



This is like no other video my brother and I have ever made. This is our first attempt at making a short war film. In this video we agreed on both of us having 3 lives each, and respawn somewhere else - much like a video game. We hope you enjoy it! It was a really low budget film.

This video was shot on Thursday, November 17, 2011 in about three hours.

We left out the blood and gore because we believe it is not necessary and it's gross. We only did the muzzle flashes as far as visuals go. We are not guys who play the war games, we just have imaginations.

I would like to point out that Jordan made our collaboration logo at the beginning.

Influences include: Freddie Wong, Corridor Digital, and Pwnisher.

All credited sources are in the credit roll at the end of the video.

-Brandon

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Pretty Pink Tractor

I follow this comedian because he puts out humor that isn't dirty, but good clean fun. He's a Christian you know  - but not the in-your-face type.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Happy Birthday 2011 Lesson

Cars 2

I just got back from my local Wal-Mart with the release of Cars 2. I haven't even seen it in theaters. I've only seen a few clips from Pixar's YouTube. It'll be cool to see those clips in context. I hope this movie will rock. It's still early in the morning. When the entire family wakes up we will watch it. Our little Wal-Mart, not a Supercenter, opened at 6 a.m. I got there a few minutes after. I raced back to the electronics department. (We have a smaller store so it didn't take that long.) It wasn't even on the shelf yet! I asked the one of the stockers and she said the department manager should be in the back getting it ready. I just waited about 5 minutes and the manager pulled it right out of the box. "You just want the regular one right?" He asked. "Yeah," I replied, trying to conceal my excitement, "We don't have a Blue-ray player." I expressed my excitement to those up front. I didn't care, I work there anyway. ;)

So this means I got the very first copy from our store!! That's a big thing for me because I've never done that sort of thing, not even with games. I'm a music man after all. Games are just the occasional leisure.

Yeah, so I'm a little dramatic at times in my writing. That's just me. I'm a writer, and very imaginative at that.

-Brandon


EDIT: 12:16 PM
Yeah, the movie was awesome!! :) It was really cool and a great change from the first movie.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Guitar - 3rd Anniversary

This Saturday will mark my third anniversary of playing guitar. Check this video. It will show my progress.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

NO. WAY.

When I was at work this afternoon, I went outside with a buggy (cuz I work at Walmart) to fetch some ice from the machine for the smaller one inside. I loaded up the buggy and unloaded it inside. I needed some more ice.  I loaded up a few more bags in the buggy and figured I was about done. I'll get a few more, I said to myself. You only need one more, a "voice" said in my head. I thought, Nah, I'll just get three more and it should be enough. I pushed the buggy back inside and continued loading the ice machine. As I was nearing the end of my load, and the machine reaching its limit, I thought, If this works out like I think it's gonna, then...that'll be too weird. Guess what? I had two too many!! (Implying the "voice" was right!!) 

Why don't I listen??!

-Brandon

Friday, October 21, 2011

What have I been up to?

It's been a battle with my allergy attack, or whatever hit me. hehe. I was still able to go to Pumpkin Hollow (to be scared by the goblins) with my friends and church group last Saturday. I thought at first I wouldn't be able to go because I felt really bad - and it was an hour before we were to leave. But I was determined. With the help of a nasal decongestant, willpower, and adrenaline, I picked myself off the couch. My back had been hurting too from the day at work. But that heating pad and 3 Ibruprofen had helped. After moving around, I did fine and felt a lot better. I proved that a little determination will get you places. I used to think the "willpower" thing was just a superstition, but not anymore. I had a great time with everyone. It's not exactly a haunted house we went to. The attractions were the Mine and the Haunted Forest, and then also a few friends went to the Corn Maze. We did not care to go to Bubba's Butcher Barn to see gory stuff. The Mine is basically a closed in tunnel you walk through. You go through rooms to get scared, but sometimes they get you in the walls too. The Forest is an actual forest you walk through - along a path you follow lighted by small lamps hanging from trees. Along the way you will get scared; sometimes I can predict when, but it's always fun. This year I wasn't as scared as I have been before because I'm getting older. I got startled a few times and that was cool. My friend Fred was acting like he was terrified of the scares. It was so funny - he was half the entertainment! Crouching low and covering his head he ran through the scares like a little kid. He was pretty convincing as he wailed in supposed fear.

I learned a way I can prevent my back from hurting so much as a cashier. I'm so tall that when I reach down to get change from the drawer, I would bend my back a little; but now I bend my legs more and it is much easier on my back. I also learned Walmart does not accept Kroger coupons! haha There's so much to remember.

I found another band called Red Seas Fire. They are in the UK. Pretty stinkin' awesome if you like Progressive Metal. They have 7 strings and at least one 8 string. The guitarist sometimes hits the 8th string and it sounds awesomely low. I hope to find lyrics to their songs, because I want to find out if what they are saying is okay and not offensive. Until I find the lyrics, I guess I'm listening in happy ignorance if they are singing bad stuff. I just hope they aren't. They produce awesome music and I fear the possibility of having to delete them.

I slowly working some projects for the future. This Christmas, I plan on releasing a Christmas Rock Carol on YouTube. I have 5 songs so far in this arrangement. I'm trying to figure out how I can transition from the 5th to the 6th song, whatever song it will be. I am also going to be doing some tutorials once I get rid of this congestion.

-Brandon

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Happy BDay Rock 2011 Tabs Coming

Yeah, I'm working on the tabs for this song. I'm tabbing out the studio version. I will then do a lesson on the song. I will teach both the rhythm and the solo and provide tabs for each. I will provide backing tracks at full speed with the rhythm and without the rhythm, and the same for 75% speed tracks. So that is 4 backing tracks in all. This is in standard tuning if you need a heads up.

P.S. Feeling a lot better now. Throat is almost healed. ;)

-Brandon

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Scratchy Throat

Got a scratchy, raw throat today. Could be worse though. Glad I'm off work. Hope to feel better tomorrow. I'm taking Vitamin C and D to boost my immune system. I'm taking 2000 mg of each three times a day. I am also drinking homemade bone broth. Take it for me, all natural remedies work faster than antibiotics and are better for your health overall.

-Brandon

EDIT: (9:05 PM) I am feeling better. Hope to be as good as new in the morning.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Upcoming Christmas Rock

I'm already working on a song to rock out for Christmas. I've got the "Gloria" song (Angels we have heard on high) and "Jingle Bells" so far. It's kinda like I did my "God Bless America" on YouTube. I mashed 3 full patriotic songs together. Well, this is going to be Christmas songs. I'll probably do more that three - I've got to. Even now it's only a minute long. But I want to repeat some of the songs. Kinda come back to them. You'll see. I'll keep you updated and eventually give a sneak peek. I'm starting this song in the key of C.

Brandon

P.S. Jingle Bells was really difficult to get down, but I finally got it. Or at least 75% down pat.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Demon Hunter - Christian Metal

Christian Metal. Yes, you read it correctly. I realize some do not care for this heavy stuff. I understand. However, the lyrics by these Christians are deep and full of God's love. It's a wonderful alternative to the secular music. Same beat and style, but the message (the most important part) is healthy. I recently bought Demon Hunter's album "Summer of Darkness." I really like the lyrics of this song "Not Ready To Die." It's the first track on this album. Lyrics are under this video.



You've got a lot of nerve and I've got a lot of fingers to point
While you were busy building knowledge I was already right
I know a voice like yours is not a weapon at all
And even mine is not a chisel for a thickened skull
So you can chant your anthems to the deaf
And we can sit here and cry until there's nothing left
Or we can take our voices with our hands
Make like knives and make demands
We'll take our voices - with our hands
Make like knives - we'll make demands

I'm burning bridges for the last time

I'm breaking habits for the first time

I saw my future today, it said I'm going away
But I still haven't sung the last line
On my way down..
I'm not ready to lay, not ready to fade
I'm not ready to die
And everyday of my life I can feel it getting harder to breathe
With every minute ticking by I'm getting ready to leave
I know a life like mine is not a reason to fret
But I've been busy build scars that you will never forget
If only thirty three years can save my life
I've had twenty four more to make things right
So when I'm taken to the sky and you're still here
You can clear your mind and dry your tears
When I'm taken home - and you're still here
Just clear your mind - dry your tears
I'm burning bridges for the last time
I'm breaking habits for the first time
I saw my future today, it said I'm going away
But I still haven't sung the last line.
On my way down..
I'm not ready to lay, not ready to fade
I'm not ready to die
When I'm taken home - and you're still here
Just clear your mind - dry your tears
We'll take our voices - with our hands
Make like knives - we'll make demands
I'm not ready to lay, not ready to fade
I'm not ready to die



Basically, the meaning of this song is about how we Christians feel about death. We know where we are going when we die. We have everlasting life with God and will go to heaven. Sometimes we wonder if we were all we could be in our lives. It's a bitter-sweet thing with death.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Working at Walmart as cashier

Well, I worked a full day today on the cash register by myself. Today was my first day to do that. CBLs are finished. No more test taking. Cashiering is not really hard. I like that it's repetitive. It's fun and enjoyable to help people, our customers. I no longer roam Walmart the same - I'm now an associate. It's not a Supercenter where I work, so it's a great start if I want to make this a career. Every associate and manager is helpful as they know how it was when they first started working there.

Brandon

Friday, September 30, 2011

Exclusive Guitar Video




Lucky you! You are watching an exclusive video found only on a few shared sites like my blog, Facebook, and any other forms of sharing. Share this video to pieces if you wish. ;) This is a bonus video.

I'm just jamming out Canon Rock in my bedroom - very comfortable and just having fun. I do this sort of thing often. Did you know that Canon Rock was the reason I started playing the guitar? I always wanted to learn this song, and as I get better at it I'm fulfilling my dream.

How did I get these crazy video effects? Well, I downloaded these free video backgrounds and then used Chroma Keyer inside Sony Vegas to key out certain colors. I used what would work best for the effect. For instance, I keyed out all solid white for the flames. I placed my video on top of the flames.

I'm jamming through POD Farm. It's software that emulates my amps and effects inside my computer. My recording program is Reaper. This was one live recorded take. I'm playing on my Ibanez RG350DX - everything stock.

You can learn Canon Rock in my new lesson series.

- Brandon

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Second day on new job

Looks like I'll be taking computer-based learning (CBL) tests for a little bit at Walmart. That's what I did today.

Monday, September 26, 2011

First day on new job

If you've been following, you will know I got a new job at Walmart as a cashier.

Yeah, so it went well. Today was just orientation: listening, answering and asking questions, tutorials, and watching videos. Tomorrow I will finish this up and go into the meat of my training. Possibly start training as a cashier in which I will observe someone. Wish me luck!

Brandon

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

New Fan Email

Are you a fan? Email me anytime at the new and official fan email: thefireball100@yahoo.com



Thanks.
Brandon Burch



Tuesday, September 20, 2011

20 Years. New Job. Futuristic Shred Metal.

20 Years.
Today marks my 20th birthday. Never before and never again will the numbers of the date and age match. Turning 10 was a special thing for me as well. It was that year that I became a "2-digit man." I guess you could say I am at a bridge between adolescence and adulthood. haha. I know, I know - age doesn't dictate maturity.

New Job.
I received a really good birthday present this year. I got a new job! And it's local! No more driving back and forth 60 miles round trip. This is will save gas money immensely. Living one mile from work will be awesome. Oh - the job - yes. It's at Walmart. I will mainly be a cashier. The schedule is randomly generated by a computer, so every week will be different. Good thing is that I'll be getting more money than my previous job. This will really help in more ways that one. This job will be a great place to start. No, it's not computers, but it's a start. I got my foot in the door. I needed another job. The fact that's it's so close to my house is gonna be the plus. My new job starts next week and I'm a little nervous. However, I am very thankful to God for His mighty works in my life. I know He's got a plan and something else to teach me. I always learn something new everywhere I go.

Futuristic Shred Metal.
Are you into shred metal guitar? Even instrumental? How about adding a bit of futuristic flavor to it? Does it taste good? Want the whole dish? If yes, sit down to dinner. I have here a man by the name of Paul Wardingham. He produces the very genre I speak of. I guess you can call it Futuristic Instrumental Shred Metal. You can check out his website and listen to his song "Ghost in the Machine" from his 'Assimilate Regenerate' album and see if you like it. I bought this album and I am loving it! Paul is currently working on another album called 'The Human Affliction.' He has become one of my guitar heroes as of late. I love listening and headbanging to his stuff. I wait in anticipation for his next album.




- Brandon B.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Odd time signatures

I'm finally starting to grasp odd time signatures and odd feels. I watched a Meshuggah lesson today on YouTube and it helped me. No, I don't listen to that band, but I do like the style and since they use a lot of odd feels and odd time signatures, I wanted to learn something like that.

I created a riff over a 4/4 drum track that has an odd feel to it. I think I am grasping 7/8 time after watching a sequel to that first lesson. It's really cool. I love it! It's awesome to play something different. I was getting sick of just 4/4 time: 1, 2, 3, 4, 1, 2, 3, 4. I can do 3/4 as well, but it's just not as weird as 7/8. Maybe I'll work on 9/8 after I get 7/8 down. I just wanna compose some stuff that's different from what I've been doing all of my life. Yeah, I played piano before guitar, since I was 8, so I'm ready for a change.

But hey, 4/4 time is not bad. If you mix 4/4 in with 7/8, that could be interesting. And even keeping 4/4 time all way through, except put an odd feel into parts of the song makes for an even more interesting song. Course, I guess it depends on your preference.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

AHHH!! I can't breathe!

We ran out of coffee creamer this morning. I was going to go to the store to get some. I had had my coffee, but my mom hadn't. I thought of a quick and easy way to temporarily dispel morning breath. We have 100% peppermint oil in the cabinet that we got from the Natural Food Store. It only takes one drop to work. I unscrewed the cap, placed my thumb over the opening, turned the bottle upside down and right side up, and placed my thumb on my tongue. Ahh...that will do nicely. In just a couple of seconds I will feel so refreshed. The people at the store will never know I had not yet brushed my teeth. I started to feel the peppermint spread through my mouth. It intensified. Beyond what I had experienced before. I had gotten a little too much! What?! But how? It didn't seem like that much on my thumb! 

I leaned over the kitchen sink breathing through my mouth, and then my nose - but it wasn't any different. Every time I breathed, an overwhelming dose of peppermint filled my mouth and throat. I felt nauseous. I waited for 30 long seconds until finally I could at least breath normally. I downed some water, only to feel worse. 

I just waited. My mom came into the kitchen. I told her what had happened. She reminded me to be careful with that stuff, and also informed me the store wasn't open anyway. It was 5:30 in the morning. One half hour until they open. Oh gosh.

Fortunately, I did not get sick, but it took 20 minutes until that strong taste left the back of my mouth. Even now - after almost an hour after it happened - I can still taste it a little.

Lesson learned: Don't use too much peppermint oil! And don't assume the store is open either.


--Brandon

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Temporary job for a day

I had the opportunity to work as a temp at a computer repair shop yesterday. I worked a full shift. (9 a.m. to 6 p.m.) It was really cool. I'll try to tell the story from beginning to end.

I arrived at the computer repair shop 20 minutes early. I was really nervous. I had tried the door a few times but had been locked. I was just sitting in my car looking inside. I could see that there was a sales floor and back doors - most likely lead to where I would be working. I just sat there forever it seemed. I was praying and hoping today would be awesome. Of course it would be. Finally someone came to unlock the door. I went in and introduced myself as Brandon Burch. He simply said OK. I thought to myself, well he doesn't know who I am. So I quickly told him that I was to be working as a temporary today.

After parking in the back and going in the back door, I was led into the back room where all the workbenches were. I was introduced to the head-technician. He showed me around and gave me a run down of everything they did throughout the day. Basically, all day I installed updates on computers that have been restarted from scratch (as they called it "freshing" computers). It was fun just being around the computers. There was one time during the day, when we installed dual monitors for the computers in the back office. That was pretty fun. They also were recycling old school computers, ya know, the really heavy ones. I loaded about 20 into the back of a van.

By this time it was 5:00 PM. The director called me into the owner's office where they would interview me before leaving for the day at 6:00. They asked me about my resume, my interests, how I liked it today, and I just talking to me they found out my personalities. There were glad that I have good communication skills and wasn't afraid to talk to people. It was then I referred to my YouTube channel where I give guitar lessons. It was cool because the owner expressed interest in what I did and how I got my guitar sound through the computer. I explained the interface and POD Farm through USB connection, and said it sounded pretty good. They said they would like to consider me for a position, but they had no current openings. They mentioned that Rance had said that I would make a good employee, I was eager to do whatever he told me to do, and was willing to learn the business. I just need some experience to help me along. I was very surprised to hear that he said school is not really going to teach you anything that you will need to know for the business.

You learn basically everything here at work. He told me about one employee - how he had gone to school for computer repair. He got a degree and when he got out and came to work, he didn't really know anything about the business. It was just all textbook and theory stuff. I was kind of shocked because everybody is talking about how important is to go to college. But this actually proved my dad right: you really learn everything at work - on-the-job training. Granted, it might be hard to get a job because I don't have a bachelor's degree, but there's really no sense in wasting money going to college if I can get a good job with a two year degree. There are some people there on the job that are still paying off a student loan. I say, if you can make it with a two year degree: go for it!

The owner told the director that I just need somebody to give me a chance. Even though they could not pay me for future times, I could work as an intern if I wished. If I ever felt like working there as an intern I would just call up and a they could find a time to use me; and just to get some experience to put on a resume. Heck, I got some experience this day and got paid to boot! I really think I made a good impression on these people and I think they enjoyed my company. This is what I'd strived for very much so. The only thing I would change is all the cursing I heard all day long. I know this is just the world but it was bothersome nonetheless. I just turned on the Christian radio station as I traveled home. LOL.

It was so cool to talk with computer gurus. These guys were the pros and I could ask them questions and get instant answers. I found out that my hard drive in my laptop is defective because it had clicked one time before. That explains why my computer is slow. It has gotten slower and slower throughout the months. My computer is slowly dying. That is why I'm backing up my files again today. When my birthday rolls around on September 20, I'm going to use that money to buy a new hard drive for my computer. This is going to cost me around $70. I can't wait to spend this kind of money because it's gonna be well worth it. My computer is really ticking me off with its slowness! It so hard to record audio for my songs and produce videos. It's so hard to do multi-tasking. It has a 2.1 processor and 4 GB of ram. There's no way in this world it should be as sluggish as it is. I have wiped the computer twice already and it still messes up. So is very obvious that it has something physically wrong with it.

Something else that I learned from the computer gurus is multiple virus scanning programs installed on your computer actually do fight with each other. You need to have one virus scanning program. This is contrary to something I had heard from a student at school.

All in all, this day was so awesome! I thank God for the opportunity I had in working there.


-Brandon

Friday, September 2, 2011

Friday, August 26, 2011

My POD Farm Presets

Do you use POD Farm for recording guitars? POD Farm simulates amps and effects so you can record via USB. If you are in search of some rockin' tones, download my best tones here!


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Songs to Cover

So I came up with a list of songs that I should cover for you guys.

Demon Hunter
-Descending upon us
-Snap your fingers, snap your neck

The first song is a little challenging and it requires a bit more work. I'm learning it by ear and by tab from www.ultimate-guitar.com. (Always gotta check with your own ear - sometimes the tab is wrong.

The second song is quite simple and really fun! Kudos to the bassist who gives the guitarist a break. Listen to it to know what I mean. :)



Skillet
-Comatose
-Hero

I already did do 'Monster' (several times...LOL) and 'Awake and Alive' (tube screamer demo). Just check out my channel use the search function.

'Hero' is hard for me - mainly the rhythm. Needs a lot of work. Haven't practiced it in a while.

'Comatose' is kinda easy - just needs a little bit more practice.



Red
-Faceless
-Watch you crawl

The first song is fun and I almost have it down. The picking part in the middle is a bit tough. I'm using the YouTube lesson from the band guitarist.

'Watch you crawl' is really tough on the rhythm and I've only tried a little bit of it.



These are just some songs I could cover in the not-so-distant future. I might cover something else first, but subscribe to my YouTube channel if you want to see my videos. I know of the requests I have had, and I try not to make promises just in case, but I do still have them on the list. I do consider them. Thank you.

-Brandon

Friday, August 19, 2011

Julian Smith Comedy

Are you familiar with his videos? I just started watching a bunch of his videos today. Here's a couple of my favorites. :D He's hilarious!



Thursday, August 18, 2011

Composing with noise

I've been composing a lot lately. Therefore, it has slowed my YouTube video count. I usually come out with one almost every week. It's so hard doing it all by yourself when you know you aren't trained for mixing and mastering. :) But I do the best I can with the help of those at GuitarMasterClass.net (GMC) and my friends and family.

You can sneak a peek at my latest song I composed and still working on. I usually record the bass last now - that's how I saw Skillet do it in a behind the scenes look. So for now I don't have bass. I find myself laying down a bunch of ideas and then finishing them later. I started to redo "A Father's Love" today, but started something different. I have a lot of unfinished projects. haha

Since I've been composing like crazy, this has slowed my practice time considerably...to practically nothing. But I try to just enjoy life as it comes. So much to worry .... no not worry ... I can't believe I typed that - so much to ... endure in life. I couldn't think of a word for that. I guess that's the problem. When a person has "noise" inside of them, it's hard to focus. When you strive to stay dedicated to God and think about your future (find a full time job) it's kinda scary. Sometimes you paste a smile on your face so others don't know you are "noisy" inside. That's my word I use as of late to describe that.

I was talking about practice time because I'm a subscribed member at GMC, and it feels like a waste of money to pay and not use it to the fullest. But I already paid my year's subscription...so I'll just use it when I feel like it. It's hard to learn new things. It's a challenge. If I can't catch on right away, I tend to walk away from it. I don't always, but it's hard not to. I like to play songs that's within my skill, but then that means I won't expand my musical vocabulary or skill itself.

Gosh, this was gonna be a short post...but look how it turned out. haha

I added a poll at the bottom. What do you enjoy reading the most on this blog? You might feed the fish if you wish. They get kinda hungry since this blog isn't that popular. Tell your friends about this blog if you enjoy it. Thank you. :)

Friday, August 12, 2011

New Easy Listening Original

Please give my new song a listen. I haven't regularly played the piano in a while. I wrote this track with the electric piano and then I recorded MIDI strings on top of them. I recorded the lead with my electric guitar. This song was written in the midst of an emotional roller coaster.

I called the song, Paths.

-Brandon

Friday, August 5, 2011

Canon in D (my production)

I am working on my own Canon Rock. For now, I have the calm strings intro. You will hear at the end the distorted guitar chord, signifying where the rock part will begin. Listen by clicking on the link below.

Canon in D

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Church Camp 2011 - Forgetting the Past

Hey everyone! :)

This year was wonderful! I had a great time. I don't know if this was my last year or not. I would like to think it wasn't, but you never know about the future. What if I get busy with a job and cannot get away. Well, I went 8 years in a row. I have the memories, pictures, and videos. I rededicated my life this year and promised to have my "quiet time" each day with God. What is quiet time? One could define it as, "Prayer to God, meditating and self-reflection, and study of His Word.

This year's camp theme was about forgiveness. In the Bible, Peter asked Jesus how often he should forgive his neighbor. Seven times? Jesus said, "70 x 7." Okay, let's see, do that math....that comes to 490 times. Is that what Jesus meant? No! He meant we should not keep count of how many times we forgive one another. If we keep count we are really not forgiving anyway, because we are holding something against them.

I remember thinking, when the week started, that I would make a decision of some kind. You see, at church camp we have the absence of TVs, cell phones, and other distractions, but most of all the influence of the world. It is a lot easier to make decisions for Christ. However, it is a lot harder to keep those commitments when campers get back home. We live in a Utopian World at camp. We have morning and evening worship services, and classes right before noon. There are also devotionals in the morning and night. There are several opportunities to hear God's Word proclaimed.

I'm honored to have been a part of it. My dad asked me Tuesday night if I would give the following morning's devotional. At first I hesitated, but after giving it some thought and looking through the book of James, I accepted. I had felt this tugging in my heart to do it. And I can't remember exactly when, but I remember when the week started God spoke to my heart, You need to be ready to give a devotional. I thought at first it was just my own imagination, but when my dad asked me I was like, Whoa, that was God talking and not me.

I chose James 1: 12-15. This is a summary of what I said.
We live in a world where everybody is blaming others for their mistakes. The devil made me do it, God tempted me, my environment is the problem. Our environment does influence us, but it's not responsible for our bad choices, nor can Satan or God make us do anything. Of course, God does not tempt anyone because He cannot be tempted to do evil. Satan can dangle sin in front of us, but it's our choice what we do. We are drawn away by our own lusts. It is ultimately our fault. When you are being tempted, don't say, "Well, I'll think about it." Resist immediately while you are strong. If you think about it and do not resist you are more likely to give in than resist. We had a theme back in 2009 that said to resist the devil and he will flee from you. It may not seem worth it to resist the temptations and stand the trials that come our way, but one day it will be worth it. We will receive a crown of life.
Eternity will make this life be worth it all the more. I have to remind myself of this often. I'm not saying it makes life any easier, but it does help you keep in mind why we are keeping the faith.

I can feel God using me more and more, little by little. I started out being an usher when I was little. Years later I joined the choir. Next, I became a song leader. I was called on to pray for my first time, in public at church camp, a few years ago. Then I became the assistant Sunday School teacher for the teenage class (which is usually only my little brother as of late). I'm currently doing all of these things in my local church. Who knows? What if God calls me to preach one day? Who can say, but God in Heaven? Only He knows. Even if He doesn't call me to preach ever in my life, I know He has lots for me to do. I remember as a young teen I would daydream about being a teacher and have a fire inside of my spirit. I truly believe God has given me a heart for His ministry.

At the end of Thursday's class, my camp teacher of the 19-21 year-olds asked for a show of hands of who would make a promise to him and God that we would have our "quiet time" each day with God. A lot of hands went up, but I hesitated. I said, "I know one thing - I made that commitment last year and I didn't keep it." Without missing a beat, my wise, middle-aged teacher said, "That's the past. Don't ever let the devil hold your past against you." I think that has been my problem. I have let Satan make me feel bad about my past. You failed once before. What makes you think you are going to succeed this time? You know you can't do it. You're stuck forever in this continual loop. That has been Satan's argument for the longest time, and I listened to him. But thank God I'm back on the right track. That's what rededication is all about. I remember how happy I felt Thursday night. I don't remember exactly when, but I guess it was just that eventually my heart agreed with what my mind knew what I should do. A commitment is a commitment. I will keep my promise, so help me God. Pumping my fist, I told my teacher, "I'll do it."

I went to church camp with two digital cameras. One is a Fujifilm 12.2 megapixel for normal shots, and the other is an Olympus Stylus Tough 6000 for underwater shots. It is fully waterproof and shockproof. It is waterproof to 10 feet for 1 hour, and shockproof from a 5 foot drop. Shockproof means if it is dropped it won't malfunction. It doesn't have an optical lens that sticks out, unlike my Fujifilm. I made a music video of my footage and pictures and put it on YouTube. It is unlisted video, but since you are reading my blog I will give you the link to my production. I uploaded it in HD quality. The videos are not HD, but the pictures are. My little brother also did his own production using his Nikon Coolpix L20. We both used the professional editing software called Sony Vegas Movie Studio HD Platinum 10. If you want to see the video I made from last year, feel free to watch. It is a compilation of both my little brother's stuff and my stuff. Back then I could only use Windows Movie Maker.

At camp I made new friends, saw old friends again I had not talked with since the previous year, and missed the ones who did not come back. So many of them are busy with jobs, and who knows what else. You never know what the future holds. That is why I looked at this year as my last year. I soaked it all in just in case.

I witnessed several campers make decisions for the LORD. I know there must have been others who made private decisions as I did. I don't mind telling people I rededicated my life, but I didn't want to go forward to make it public. I know that coming forward is not so you can show off, but in my mind it would feel like it. And no, it's wrong to come forward. That's just the way I personally felt at the time. I wouldn't feel right. Perhaps it's my doubts of keeping it. I think of Mark chapter 9 where the man told Jesus that he believed the LORD could heal his son, but he had his doubts. He asked the LORD to help him in his unbelief. That is what I experience at times. That is what we all experience at times. But God is so good. He helps us.

My desire is to please God with my life. I write songs for Him and always give Him the glory and the credit. It feels so great to praise Him for the help given to me. Without Him I would be nothing.

Friends, I hope that whatever you are struggling with you will bring to our Creator.

Keep in mind Philippians 3:13-14. Forget the past. Focus on what lies ahead and run the race before you. You have a prize awaiting you.

God Bless You,
Brandon Burch

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Goodbye for a few days

I'm going to church camp for July 18 - 22. I know it will be awesome! I'll tell you all about it when I come back.

I leave you with another unfinished song. CLICK HERE

Friday, July 15, 2011

The funny things in life

This packet of scissors has a seal claiming they are guaranteed forever. Say what? Haha. I know it's just marketing and they are just telling how durable they are, but nothing last forever.

I couldn't help but think about the future. It's all gonna burn one day.
"But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up." 2 Peter 3:10, The Bible (NKJV)





On an entirely different subject, here is an amusing thing I saw in the men's restroom at my college.

The sticker says to "Pull Down With Two Hands." What, you mean the entire dispenser? haha. That's what I thought of. Heehee. :D

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

New Rock Song Preview

This one is called "Summer Fun." I posted a video on YouTube, and you can view it here and check out the description.

Hope you like it!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Update on my projects, things to come

Okay, so some of you may be wondering when I am going to release "Determination." I have it completed, I just need to do one final mix on it, and I think it will be good enough. It's time to move on. It just needs a little more bass. I was listening to it in my car and the bass just wasn't there as it should be. I hope to get some mixing speakers one day.

And about the lesson for God Bless America video....I started work on that today. I got the first song, "Star Spangled Banner," tabbed out. I will provide many goodies and helps for you, and of course, you will get the backing track. I will give you one with the rhythm guitars in it, and one with just the drums only. I will place this in a zip file and upload it to MegaUpload.com where you can download it. And, of course, there will be a spoken tutorial on YouTube. :) I'm honored so many of you enjoyed it!

Also, I've been thinking about doing another interactive game for YouTube. When I did the first one, it was really fun - yes, time consuming. I don't know what it will be, but I don't want it to be the same kind of thing, otherwise it might be dull...a deja vu. But the prize will be probably another behind the scenes. I will probably some time upload a bloopers video that is public and link you to the old blooper video. :)


Brandon

Working On New Song - This Time It's Rock!

Check it out!! :)

Working On New Song - This Time It's Rock!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

This Holiday Will Rock You!

Oooooohh - I can hardly wait! I'm getting a patriotic song together for you guys! I will upload it soon on YouTube. A lesson will soon follow. You can see my unfinished piece as of this blog post. There are 3 songs I play, and a small portion of a song at the very end. It's Pop/Rock style. Can you guess which songs? :D

Determination | All the advice

Let's see how many of you YouTubers are following my blog. (heehee) Congratulations if you are, because you have your reward. You get to see the (most likely) final mix of my song "Determination" before it has even been released on YouTube! I will get a video together for it soon. But the other cool part is that you get to see all the advice from people who helped me with my mixing. You will not see all of the progressive mixes attached. You will only see the most recent mix and the comments throughout. I remixed and re-posted the song several times.

Just click the link below.

Thanks following,
Brandon

New Metal Song Finished

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Song in my head today by Owl City

This Owl City's instrumental (for the most part) remix of their song "Hello Seattle." I've had this song in my head today. I love it. I could listen to it all the time!


Brandon

Post Office - NO COLLECTION


I suppose you can't have everything. What's a Post Office without collection? What? They're closed?! That doesn't make sense! The nerve!

Obviously, this was doctored. I used GIMP (free, but like Photoshop) to do this. Copy, paste, smudge, and blur did the trick. LOL.

I saw No Collection on this sign when I went to the P.O. today, and I couldn't resist. ;D

Mt. Dew Monster Machine

It's weird that they only put Mt. Dew in this one machine. I call it the Mt. Dew Monster Machine! I promise this isn't photo-shopped. This is at my school.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Not a country fan, but this...

Yeah, I don't normally listen to country. I normally cringe when I hear it on the radio. It's mostly the words that are disturbing at times. Going overboard you say? Well...I've heard some country songs that are not appropriate at all. I used to listen to country when I went through a half year phase. But this kind of country here it very nice to listen to.



Muris is an amazing instructor. He now teaches at Live4Guitar.com. I'm not currently a member there, but I am a member of GuitarMasterClass.net (GMC) where he formerly taught. He still has all of his lessons there. It's cool, because he's a Christian too. :)

Check out this very fast country solo he did at GMC.


What's your thoughts on country, and what are your reactions to these videos?

Brandon

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Drop A Tuning!!

I got my guitar set up for Drop A tuning! I have a 68 gauge string on the bottom! These things are monsters!! I can hammer away without my strings vibrating out of tune! Now I can do some heavy songs.

Another sneak peek at "Determination"

I have been doing some major reconstructing. Here I am linking you to a snippet of the beginning.


My new mouse pad



6/27/2011: I found out that the ink can rub off kind of easy, so be careful. I have a faded white spot on mine now where I thought the discoloration was chalk or something. :/ You'd think it'd be better quality than that. Well, it's going to happen anyway. Grr.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

NO STRAY CATS ALLOWED

We have been having stray cats come to our house all the time wanting handouts. We simply can't keep them. We have chased them off in various ways. Finally, my Mom chalked this notice on the back patio where they have been coming. It has been several days now. They haven't come back since. LOL.


Brandon

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The best is yet to come

Hello everybody!

Wow, how time has flown by so quickly! I remember the first day of college as though it were yesterday. I know that's what we all say, but it's true in a sense. We keep our most cherished memories vivid in our minds as to not forget them. I wore my Three Rivers shirt the first and last days of every semester. I took 63 hours with an overall average GPA of 3.762. All of my classes were 3 credit hours, except one 6 hour class that was my internship with the IT Department. It's amazing how much information that can be hurled at us in such a short time.

I have had a lot of experiences, met many new people, became acquainted with many, and friends with a few. Some experiences and decisions affected me for life, and some are just short term. We have only one life to live. We must live it to the fullest.....with God. You knew I would say that, didn't you? You may not have liked that I said it. I may have made you feel uncomfortable. But the fact is - we will all die one day. This life is not all there is. We must make a decision. Will we accept who our Creator is, or will we reject Him? My friend, if you don't let God become a part of your life, one day you will regret it. I can't change reality. You must choose.

I thank God that He rescued me from going to Hell. When I was 8 years old, I accepted that God sent His Son to die for me (you too) because He loves me (and you too). I asked Jesus to forgive me of my sins (things we do wrong) and to become a part of my life. To do this, you must give full control to Him. You can't do it on your own. Sure, we're gonna mess up. We're not perfect, but God loved us so much that He wanted to rescue us from eternal separation from Him. You see, we all are sinners, and God cannot look on sin. To get to Heaven on our own we have to live a perfect life. That's impossible. So God provided a way. God's only Son, Jesus, was the perfect sacrifice for us because He came to this earth and lived a perfect life. All we have to do is accept this - admit we can't do it on our own. God knows the heart - it's not about words.

Anyway, I know God has a plan for me. Just like the song "Best is yet to come" written by the band RED, the best is yet to come, because God's plans are always the best. He knows our lives backwards and forwards. I covered RED's song, and you can find me playing it on YouTube in my cap and gown.

Peace out, ladies and gentlemen.


-Brandon Burch

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Collabs = Exhaustion ;)

I love joining guitar collabs, but the following have the potential to happen:

1. 30+ takes
2. Computer freeze up (lose work)
3. Room gets very hot with all the lighting
4. Fatigue after so many takes
5. Forget to save a project

That last one is most unlikely, but just a while ago I got a good take, exported the WAV file of my guitar and backing, but I also needed the guitar by itself. I didn't save the project. Thus, I had to do a re-take.

I am always exhausted after I do so many takes. It wouldn't be so bad if I weren't such a perfectionist. I prefer improvising while playing along with the backing track for the collab. Mistakes happen, and I want to fix them.

I always put my all in these takes, and the more you do, you wish you had those older files back to go with them. Usually, those files were the best takes.

The best thing to do is come back to it later.

Goodbye Vox VT 30 amp

Today I sold my Vox VT 30 amp. I no longer enjoyed the sound. It's too thin for my taste. I'm searching for another amp. This is a long term goal, as the tone I am seeking will require a fat wallet.

Even before I sold this amp (I was thinking about it) I played a Marshall Haze 15 in a store close to me. It sounded nice - at least for the first amp I ever tried in my searching. It had a great gain. However, I had a inkling I would not enjoy it for long. The amp just didn't impress me all that much. It was a good smaller size, but it definitely wasn't a 10/10...more like a 7/10.

But after all, it was only the first amp I tried. I had to play on some more before I made a final decision. I tried a few other smaller amps in the store, but none came close to the Haze 15. The clerk even cranked it up for me to play to hear what it would really do. Wow. Loud. Big. Cool.

When I sold my amp today at another guitar shop, I played on two bigger amps that really impressed me. They were a Mesa Boogie Mark Five and a Marshall JCM 2000 Dual Super Lead. They were BIG amps! One of these definitely would be too big for my room. Perhaps having a bigger room and a fatter wallet will go hand in hand in years to come.

The Mesa I played had the most complex and customizable head I had ever seen! The clerk walked me through so many different tones possible on that amp. It was very expensive though. Nevertheless, I was very impressed with the amp, and with what I've seen so far, I'd give it a 10/10.

You can see the two amps I played are sitting side by side. How convenient!

The Marshall JCM was very cool and had a killer high gain tone, just as the Mesa. However, the fact that it didn't have a wide variety of tones was a disadvantage. I'd give it a 9/10 for that reason. However, it was half the price because it was used. That didn't make any difference anyway. I have no where near the money for either of these amps. Let's just call this a very long term goal. Perhaps it would span a few years from now.

I was thinking of getting a Mesa Dual Rectifier as Anthony Armstrong has in the band RED, but I haven't even tried it, and yet again, a new amp that I would enjoy the most is way out of my price range.

So what do I have for an amp now, you ask? I have a cheap Ibanez GTA 15R. That and a Tube Screamer guitar pedal is what I'll use to produce live performances for others. But I usually use POD Farm anyway. The reason I sold the Vox right now is because I don't use it anyway - except for clean channel occasionally, but I can get that from my little amp. I didn't see much sense keeping it if I wasn't happy with it. I just got a little bit of store credit. :)

And so the tone adventure continues!

While I was there at the shop playing on these amps, I also dropped off my red Jackson SLSMG for modification and setup. I am getting it modified for Drop A tuning! I'm going to use GHS Baritone Guitar strings (14-70 gauge). This will definitely be heavy! It will probably be the end of next week when I get the Jackson back. In the meantime, I will be playing my two Ibanezes.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Canon Rock 2011

I have recorded yet a newer version of Canon Rock. I hope you enjoy.



See YouTube for full description.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Owl City - Fireflies (Extended)

So, last post was the original version, but here's my remixed version.



The only thing I did was extend the original ending of the song. I raised the pitch up a half step for the last original chorus, then I spliced the first chorus in for the outro and added the echo effect to make a smooth ending.

I used Audacity 1.3 to do this. It was really fun!

For the video clips I used these sites as my sources:
DreamScene.org
IgniteMotion.com
FreeVideoBacks.com

I edited the video with Sony Vegas Movie Studio HD Platinum 10.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Friday, May 27, 2011

Metal Song "Determination" FINISHED!

I have completed my metal song called "Determination." I went back and recorded the rhythm guitars again because they were not very tight and clear, and I had more ideas to add to the main rhythms. I changed a few of the riffs since my last post. I had a lot of fun recording this, but I took me half the day. Recording always drains me. On top of being drained from guitar, I'm also drained from some sinus issues I'm having. I don't know if it's a  bug or simply weather patterns, but I'm tired nonetheless.

When I feel more like myself I will shoot the video necessary for the studio track. It will be a type of music video with my miming to the studio version.

[video removed]
Here is studio version:

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Determination | Metal Composition in the Making

I am writing a song called Determination. I am doing so because I recently bought this new software called EZdrummer. It is a plugin to be used in another program - in my case I am using Reaper. Once you insert EZdrummer into Reaper as a virtual instrument, you can drag and drop drum grooves to make your song. You can then customize them as you need them. I wanted to try this out by writing a metal song. It's really fun to write and record a song. I've recorded the song in Audacity so far.


This song currently has no lyrics. You can hear the song played live in the video below. I am still working on the song. I have only the rhythm guitars recorded with the drums. Perhaps the beginning will build up more, as suggested by my close friend.


Where did I get the name "Determination?" Around the time I first started playing the electric guitar (over 2 years ago) I composed a song with this name. However, this was back when I hadn't yet grasped the concept of composing songs and rhythm guitar. I merely wrote ideas. So, I decided I would give this song that name for fun. It's a memory.


Luck of the Draw

You know how we have the expression "...the luck of the draw?" I was thinking this morning how with God there is never a luck of the draw. He is always in control. I don't understand why all of the devastation is occurring all over the world, but God does. He has the ultimate plan for us. Human reasoning says this is nothing but the luck of the draw. Hopefully luck will bring me through today, and [fill in the blank]. The fact is that God controls everything. He does allow things to happen. The bad in this world is because of sin - the wrongs things people do; that includes you and me. Is that to say that every bad thing that happens to me is God's judgement? No, not all the time. He does judge, but bad things happen simply because of the presence of sin in the world. 

I suppose it's all how you look at it, regarding luck and all. I was told by a friend that it's good luck for us if we don't die, even though it's God's hand that is protecting us. I personally do not look at it that way. I like to stay away from the idea of luck. I do this because luck reminds me of "karma" and such. It makes it sound like God doesn't have anything to do with our lives.

Anyway, the point of this post is to reassure you that even in the midst of all these disasters, God is watching it all. He may choose to stop it, or He may not. We have to trust in Him. 

Peace out, my friends.
-Brandon