Friday, August 1, 2014

Trading Spaces.

My new job is awesome. I never thought I'd say that. I hold more responsibilities at work, I'm acknowledged for the work I do, and I cannot deny that I am getting paid decently. But it is in the throws of financial liberation that certain questions I try not to think about come to haunt me.

Am I being treated different BECAUSE I am making money? I haven't acted any differently than before...perhaps a little more upbeat, a little more focused...but sheeeeeet. The main concern is that people in my immediate life treat me differently. I can't shake the thought.

I always felt like I should be treated better considering what I do and what I deal with, but now I'm wrestling with the notion that some paper did this. Am I working for it, yeah, hard in fact. But I'm still me, ole' goofy ass Dev, working on a video game, taking care of my family.

So if I haven't changed, why couldn't I be treated this way before?

Friday, July 11, 2014

The real stuff begins now

It's been awhile since I updated, and allot has occurred so far!

For awhile I was on unemployment, and figured that I would utilize my time effectively by working on the game. What has really occurred has been a random piece-wised attempt at productivity, haphazardly spread across categories I couldn't put into an order of importance. It was an extremely frustrating and depressing time of self-loathing and aimless effort that was only soothed by hours of playing Final Fantasy 14. Then something amazing happened. Not only did I get a job that pays more than the last one, but my significant other got a job as well! Huzzah and all that jazz, but some time issues came up: how am I going to continue working on my game while I slave away for the man? The answer is easy cheesy lemon squeezy: outsourcing!

Now I know what some may be thinking: "Dev, that's mad expensive, you'll go broke trying to do that!", a sentiment that may run true for most situations. However, I discovered something that may get the ball rolling in a quick, efficient, cheap, and UNIFORM standard. Everyone, say hello to Reoihare on Fiverr, a very talented artist familiar with 2-d graphics for games.

I actually conducted the initial business of starting characters today, having submitted the supporting character documentation ( rough sketch, equipment concepts, etc). If everything goes well, I can (very quickly) come up with the necessary character busts for the playable characters with supporting various expressions at an affordable rate! Eventually I will be getting to the character busts of supporting characters and antagonists!

If you think my outsourcing madness ends there, well your sadly mistaken buddy. I took the time to put together a comprehensive list of contacts regarding my needs and wants for the game. One of the things I realized was how crazy I was for factoring in animated cutscenes without scouting how long it would take for one person to do this, lol. Man was I slowjuice for that. Did you know that a 30 minute animated episode could run roughly $100,000? Wtf has that kind of money atm <_<? Not I sir, so once again, random concessions have to be made. While the animated cut-scenes are in the air at the moment, take solace in knowing that stuff is being worked on.

This process, If anything, it was an eye opening experience as to how seriously I'm taking this, and how important the presence of the game is to me. I have enough supporting information to provide accurate and consistent details to someone who can do the work I no longer have time to do even better than had I had done it. And that's alright with me! ('_')b

Friday, April 4, 2014

Why I am making an RPG for an album release

Burning the proverbial midnight oil working on my game has brought up a myriad of self-proposed questions...some of which I am barely honest with myself sometimes. If I could stop and just randomly blurt out why I think I'm doing this, we may come closer to a clearer picture/explanation:

1) Original Black Heroes: where the hell are they? Why does a comic book hero, or a movie character have to be re-fitted with a black image? Half the time it feels as if the African American community are being fed table scraps of acknowledgement! Why can't we have our own heroes to cheer for?

2)  Occupying your time effectively: games do that well! Music and gaming go together like peanut-butter and jelly. The average album will take no more than an hour of your time...I honestly wanna try my hardest to take over your life. I want my music to reverberate thought your day even when you saved and exited the game. Yes, I'm totally trying to own you. If Bungie could admit that, why couldn't I?

3) It's a cool ass concept, admit it. I've received more positive feedback than anything else! Some people are so dead-set in their ways regarding hiphop, that they feel as if an artist coming to the table couldn't possibly know how to do stuff like scripting...lolotron, this is the age of the DIYer. Direct inspiration for following my own drummer comes from non other than Danny Brown, and his takeoff from indie to commercially successful artist. I'm not here to fit a mold, or get a pat on the head anymore. I am attempting to create a successful product that will financially secure my family and closest friends. It's been allot of work, but I still hold to this project being great.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Joy and Uncertainty

I terrible at updating; I've recently welcomed a new addition to my family! In the weeks following the delivery, I faced an odd change of mood/state of mind. While things such as depression were always a near and constant factor, anxiety wasn't. Even with this being my third son, a wave of uncertainty hit me in ways I cannot truly begin to explain.

My ups and downs led me to re-open my FL studio 10 and review all of the sessions that I have yet to finish, and beats I nonchalantly left to collect dust...and it made me start to wonder, "What the fuck have I been doing?". All of this work...squandered, over reasoning that can't really hold to much. The issue at hand is how do I move about in a production fashion?

Almost anyone can do music, but very rarely do I run into people who provide the varied services one would require to "pop" so to speak. This is arguably one of the biggest reasons for working on my game...I'm hoping the media I use to create my work of art will drawn people in. You know, if you build it, and all of that jazz.

All in all, I'm still working on music. I just need to actually get a plan of action soon.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014


I truly hope everyone had a happy and peaceful holidays, and an even moreso new years evening. I've been away from regular updating for various reasons...but the biggest one I can think of would honestly be, "improper time management". I tried doing too many things at once (again) without having some for of organization...what I thought was organized still came out as a mass of random actions in multiple, in order to not let that happen again, I broke down and got a planner for my desktop. I know exactly what the work flow is for the day, and abide by it to the letter. So far, so good! I can make sense of what I'm working on, and give myself a definitive deadline for whatever it is I'm attempting to accomplish, be is game stuff or music stuff.

On the music front, things have been lookin up; as an almost direct result of staying away from social media and sticking to my planner, music output has increased lately. I really wish I could just release stuff the way I used to, but I'm working the kinks out of stuff before I just throw it out there. All I can say for now is that I definately have some stuff I feel good about.

It's official, I have a manager! DJ Chevy has always been in a position to mentor and guide me through this music stuff in a sense, so I really appreciate him showing the support.

With all that said, I'm truly aiming for for a productive year with some gainful results. Definitely doing more shows, production, and recording, along with working on my commercial project.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Blessed up and ready to battle

My mom decided to come into town to come see me the other day. This is such a rare event, I often recoil at the thought; it's no longer teenage angst, or bitter sentiment. Rather, it's coming from the notion that I do not have enough to show for myself. That is something I wrestled with for a long time.

In the conversations that followed these past two days, I've come to realize that I don't give myself enough credit. I am literally my own worse critic.

When the SOB's show got postponed due to a shooting (yes, a shooting really occurred the night before), I listened to my production on the bus...and felt a mini panic attack; it was no longer contestable in my mind, and it started to play games with my pride abit.

My mom did the strangest thing (well, at least at the moment to me): she prayed for me. Now I know, some people are not of a religious background, and it's not like I go to church every Sunday...but the power I felt afterwards couldn't be shaken. Perhaps it was more than faith in a higher...maybe the fact that my mother truly believes in my endeavors brings me strength...but something about it felt...unearthly. I cannot deny that I believe it to be true.

S'all good, I'm back on the balance beam, per say. They settled on a date to reschedule, so I'll be back in NYC October 3rd to battle it out, and get some much needed publicity for my game. Looking forward to it.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Back to shows again

Been updating this thing a lot recently. (o_o)

With the event in NYC coming up soon, I've been more so focused on that than anything...I mean, nobody drives 6 1/2 hours to loose anyway, so I'm working hard on what I wanna showcase.

But in the midst of preparing for this event, I realized how long it's been since I've done a show...and it hit me: I gotta get out more.

Originally, I didn't feel too proud of my work, as in it felt good getting the music out, but I felt that it wasn't worth buying or paying money for; I felt most efforts were rushed or the process was muddled where an untested and unsure MC meets pseudo-music professional(s). It was bad timing meets an eagerness to please...I think all artists go through it, but I'd rather keep it real and be my own worse critic than walk around like I was a phenom from the rip...nah, I was alright, then I tried doing different shit, and it added up to feeling inconsistent. I was honest with myself about it because I felt like, and STILL feel like, where I should be is waaaaaaayyyyyy higher than what I was putting out.

DJ Chevy once told me that there should never be a reason an artist should go a day without writing a song. His reasoning was that it was good practice and a way for an artist to find themselves, for an MC, to find a suitable flow. So that's exactly what I started doing from the eve of my last mixtape...I think I put out Chocolate Soy Milk last year late fall? Well, either way it was parts good, but as an overall it felt disjointed and I wanted to do better.

So, I stopped everything and focused on creating my own production and improving my bars. I wanted to be, still want to be, more than some halfway decent rapper...I wanted to be an independent artist that pulls from a deeper skill set than my peers. Somehow learning production and home studio recording lead to the beginning of creating of my game/album, but the disconnection has my small fan base shrinking because I haven't been consistently putting out new music...nor have I been getting out there as much as I should.

With that said I gave in, and plan on doing another show aside from the SOB showcase, this time at Jergel's Rhythm Grille in Warrendale PA:

It's going to be October 17th, and I'll be showcasing new music, including some that will be in the game! Gotta love cross-marketing!

Pretty decent sized venue as well. The plan is to still focus on this event in NY, but as soon as that is over start linking up with the college radio stations, the DJs, people in my neighborhood...just everybody. I'm going to, as I might have previously said, continue to release free music to create the buzz for the game/album. The shows won't be free, but at least everyone gets something.

If you've been supporting up until this time, words cannot describe how much I appreciate ya'll. If it wasn't for your support and encouragement, I would have been quit. It is my sincere hope that more people see what I'm doing here, as an independent artist, and spread the word, especially since my efforts are towards a good cause. So check out the music, buy some tickets, and come have fun!