Los Angeles Immersion Composition Society

Group Description

How It Works:

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The basic minimum requirements are that you show up at a Meetup.

The minimum requirement for you to really get something out of it is that you 

 

show up with some of your music.

 

The core process goes like this:

 

 

 * Set aside a block of time, preferably 12 hours and as close to the meetup as is reasonable.

 

 * Try to write and complete(1) 20 songs(2) during that 12 hours (this is the "Immersion" part)

 

 * Whatever you have done, you bring to the meetup.

 

 * You share your music with other lodge members. If you want "critiques" you 

 will need to ask for it. Other lodge members are there to support and enjoy. 

 It should feel fun and comfortable for you to share your music, not nervewracking.

 

An explanation of the purpose of the process:

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 - Firstly, it's to push people who may not been making music recently into 

 sitting down and writing *something*.

 

 - The 20 song goal keeps you from obsessing or tweaking one particular song 

 into oblivion. It pushes your workflow to its limits and often highlights things 

 that may be keeping you from being as creative as you could be.

 

 - The idea that you will shortly have a captive, interested audience gives you 

 incentive to make it good, and lessens the feeling that you are simply shouting 

 into the void.

 - The time limit also gives you a license to experiment. Nobody expects that 

 you will have 20 masterpieces. So the penalty for "failing" is eliminated. 

 If you try something completely different and it doesn't work, it's still a song 

 on your list of 20, you just wrap it up and move on.

 

Other benefits:

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 * Almost all of us are making music on computers, although only about half are 

making "electronic" music. So often there is a lot of discussion and learning 

about different computer recording techniques, and skill levels run from expert to 

beginner.

 

 * Despite what you often think, some of your songs won't suck. At least two 

members have releases based largely on pieces that have come from Immersion 

sessions.

 

 * It's a fun way to spend a Sunday afternoon/evening and put your head back in the 

creative process.

 

Some terms defined:  

 

(1) complete: Complete means, don't briing in "ideas", bring in songs. Polished, 

probably not, but if you think the song needs a bridge or another verse, 

write it now. Maybe you won't keep it, but don't give yourself the out of "oh I 

will come back to this and finish it up".  

 

(2) Song: 

Our "bible", the Frustrated Songwriters Handbook, defines a song as "being at least 

one second in length. Be it white noise or silence." So clearly the bar is low. 

If you wanted to game the system and come in with 20 songs every week with 20 

seconds of silence you certainly could. But more realistically it should open you 

up to accepting that maybe this particular pieces is just a 30 second interlude 

and that was what it was meant to be. 

Just because it doesn't go verse-chorus-verse-chorus-bridge-

verse-chorus doesn't mean it's a song. Not having lyrics doesn't mean it's not a 

song. If it is a complete idea to you: it's a song.  

 

 

If you bring snacks, that's awesome. Bringing beer is often appreciated, 

though not everybody drinks.  

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

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Q: How often do you meet? 

A: Roughly once a month. At the end of each meeting we schedule the next to work 

around any big items people might have on their schedule.  

 

Q: How many people are in the group?

A: There are about 7-8 active members right now, with an average attendance of 

around 5. Some people have had to leave (you know, the baby thing) and some 

people have joined, but almost all of the original members still attend. 

It is generally agreed that we would welcome a couple of new people, 

but we don't wish to get too much larger.  

 

Q: How long has the group been around?:

A: Meetup says since April of 2010 but it's actually been almost 3 years. 

That's when we started using Meetup because Facebook groups were just sucking.

 

Q: Should I join if I am looking to network in the Los Angeles music business?

A: Please don't. Some of us have had, or are having success in the business, 

but this group is about the creative process and you would probably be frustrated.  

 

Q: Are there any requirements to join? 

A: If you read this far and still think it's for you. You meet the requirements. 

 

Q: Who should I contact if I have more questions?

A: You can contact me through meetup or my personal email at brent@hoover.net. 

I try to protect the email addresses of all other members so that we never have 

a spam problem.