Preparing for a Solo Music Gig in Maine - The Song List

Once I said yes to my solo gig I had to create a song list. Which should be easy enough to do, however, I hadn't played many of the songs I used to play in years. Luckily we now have computers and word processors, I'm a Mac guy and have been for over 27 years so my writing program of choice, now, is pages … simple, easy to use, easy to format, say to change and easy to save the file in various formats.

The Current Song List

I started making a list of tunes, adding to it on a daily basis over the next week or so, which I have attached. These were songs I thought I could immediately use … (the song and set lists are also under the song list tab) … for the most part I started with the artist name and then added pieces … and I felt pretty good about the list until … I realized:

1) I forgot a lot of the lyrics
2) I didn't remember all the chords
3) I couldn't sing all the songs in keys I used to sing in …

… why, well I hadn't done a lot of singing over the years … as mentioned in my "about" section I was a professional magician, prestidigitator who performed to live and canned music, I didn't speak, sing, hum or whistle … I worked silently. Therefore my singing voice hadn't been worked on regular basis. 

So I took each song and decided what instrument I would play it on, guitar or banjo, then found a key that was comfortable. Since I had several weeks prior to my first gig I set out practicing each song, sometimes re-learning the words, sometimes realizing I'd been playing the tune with chords that weren't accurate. And oft times switching instruments because I either wanted to "shake things up" and present a song in an unusual manner, or it just sounded better to me on a particular instrument.

Next: Part 3: Further practice, pushing the envelope and creating "set lists".