Musically it will be mostly rock, with a couple of acoustic and/or piano songs just for a change of pace. Some of the works will be instrumental; some will be songs with lyrics.
Of course “rock” is an overall category, divided into numerous sub-genres and sub-sub-genres. I like several of these sub-genres, so it will vary. You might hear a little metal, a little psychedelic rock, a little Sonic Youth noise, a little Neil Young with Crazy Horse, a little 80’s Police and U2, a little 90’s Indie Rock, a little Americana. It will be mixtures and hybrids of all the above. Furthermore, I want to introduce instruments not normally heard in rock music, the violin in particular. Put it all in the pot, stir it up, and maybe I’ll have a new sound.
The main works will be connected by short transitional pieces. These transitional pieces will vary from guitar noise, to pseudo-classical piano compositions, to acoustic or classical guitar pieces. These transitional pieces will only be 30 to 60 seconds long. They will serve to connect one major composition to the next and help the album flow. It won’t be a concept album, but neither will it just be a collection of unrelated singles. It will be something in between.
I have a ton of musical ideas that I’ve come up with over the past several years. Now I’m at work turning some of those into the first draft of a work, something with structure.
I also have a ton of lyrical writing I’ve done over the years. And I plan to do more this summer.
But I plan to have a first draft of the music– including melodies– with demos recorded at home– before I write lyrics for anything. I want the music to be good enough to stand on its own without lyrics. Then I can choose whether or not I write lyrics for each piece.
Once I have recorded demos, I will then have to make a decision on which of two paths to follow:
1. Choose a producer and studio, bring in studio musicians, tweak the arrangements with the producer and the other musicians, and make a Rob Roper record. Or…
2. Find some good, creative musicians who like the demos, form a band, and develop the arrangements as a band, in practice and gigs. Then record the album as a band.
I’ll cross that bridge when I get to it. The first step is to get the music together. But there’s one problem: I’m not a good enough guitar player, piano player or music composer to compose all the ideas that are part of this vision. So I’m taking lessons and practicing to get better, while recording what I’m able now.
I am very excited about this.