Ozoni (from Kenshi Yonezu's blog)

Unable to go to the concerts I wanted to, I've been largely drawing at home lately.

Drawing is hard. Looking back at the past few days of it, there has been overwhelmingly more time spent thinking than actually working. The cycle for the past few years has often been "right after recording, work on a drawing," but in the midst of recording I can only think about the music, so every time I'm done mixing down, it's like I've been thrown in an empty room. I went to art school for just a year when I was 18, but I think I'm doing things much more diligently than then.

This year will mark seven years since I started posting music to NicoNico Douga, I believe. The Vocaloid songs started five years ago, but I posted songs I sang before that too. As a high-school student, I focused solely on music and art, having no interest in anything else; looking back on it, I feel like I went too far.

I believe I started with music when I was about 14. The members of the band I was in at the time came together with their New Year's money to buy an MTR called the Korg D3200. I can't remember the details for sure, but I think the five of us contributed 20,000 yen each, so it should have been a total of 100,000. This was something I wanted more for myself than for the band, so I recall half-forcing collection of the money, and it did weigh on my conscience just a little afterward, so I paid back the members later... I think. I remember that I ordered it online and it came to my house, so I had to carry it in both arms to the friend's house where we usually met.

Some time after that, I learned how to use a computer and make music with it. After recording a few songs without really understanding how to operate it, I'd gotten a little tired of the MTR and left it to collect dust, but I realized it might be useful to use these input files with it. But with my IQ of 2 at the time, I had not the faintest idea how to do that, and straining my half-knowledge, I came to the roundabout conclusion that I needed to buy a new hardware sequencer called the Yamaha QY100 just to connect the computer and the MTR. It fulfilled my expectations well enough, and doubled my enjoyment for composing with the ability to overlay guitar and vocals over the synth sounds. But I noticed the QY100 was using an excessive amount of power, and I confronted a new problem in which it would run out the batteries after using it for just an hour. Again, my half-ignorance led me to conclude "I'll buy as many battery ten-packs from the 100-yen store as my funds can allow," proceeding to make music without realizing I could've resolved this issue at once by just buying a power adapter. I'm pretty sure the QY100 required four AAA batteries, which I remember surprising me since I hadn't seen such a thing since the original Game Boy.

I guess what I ultimately want to say is, has it really been seven years since all that? I often talk about this on my streams, but I still kind of feel like I did then. From when I was 14 to when I graduated high school, if you include rough drafts, I made nearly 100 songs. I can't say if any of them were any good, and a lot of them were definitely just a mess, but I have to applaud myself for the effort.

These days we have the term "NicoNico Indies," but there was nothing like that back then, just silently posting crude music which no one may even enjoy along with a picture, annoying people by clogging up their searches. There were a scarce few others like me posting independent music, and sometimes we did acknowledge each other, influence each other, and communicate. I'm still in contact with some of them now, but the majority have largely vanished into thin air. I wonder what they're doing now.

Anonymous communication on the internet is huge, and at the same time sparse. Not knowing each other's names or ever seeing their faces. When you form a connection with someone, if the social site or service terminates and all the accounts go with it, you'll typically never find that person again. If such torn-apart people were to coincidentally meet on the street, they wouldn't realize it, and it's likely that they still wouldn't even if they became real-life acquaintances. Are they alive somewhere, or are they already dead? Never knowing, those people become shadows, only leaving mere outlines in the back of your mind.

Naturally, as I'm going to keep on living, there will be more and more past to think back on, and more and more to forget so soon after recalling it. But I'll just roll with it, I suppose. Sorry, this got surprisingly long.

Posted October 28th, 2014


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