Author Archives: mfassett

What’s next?

Last night I played an open mic in Menlo Park… enjoyable.  Played one new song, one older song from my Particle Salad days arranged for acoustic guitar, plus a Lyle Lovett cover.  Good times.

Not sure what my next project will be.  I do know that Watersaw will be working with Lizz Roman again, and we’re starting to compose together.  Always good to get that band back together.  We ended up performing for the Izzy Awards in the lobby last month… good fun.  We only got yelled at once for being too loud when we hit a major crescendo.  That was fun.  I am not sure the dance community always knows what to make of us, because we can get loud but we also can be very abstract and dissonant.  I’m glad Lizz Roman likes what we do, she is awesome to work with.  It’s always a creative challenge and very rewarding.

RPM 2014 — DONE

We’re done… have a listen… hope you enjoy it.  In some ways it’s probably our best RPM yet.  I’ll post later with some details on our process because it was a bit different this year.

I’m working on the full liner notes, but here’s the basics:

All songs by warrenpeece

Lead Vocals:  Michael Nold, John Rose, Mark Fassett
Guitars:  Mark Fassett and John Rose
Bass:  John Rose and Mark Fassett
Keyboards:  John Rose and Mark Fassett
Drums:  Michael Tornatore



…on the home stretch

We have 11 songs in the can for this year’s RPM Challenge.  Honestly… it’s probably our best RPM.  We started with all of us getting in the same room at the same time and recording a bunch of ideas.  Then John and I went through our usual process of moving files back and forth and transforming the ideas into songs.  Then Michael jumped in with melodies and he and I tag teamed on most of the lyrics.  The result is quite good.  We’ll be done on time.  We will probably do final mixes this Sunday.  I’ll then post the files here.

I’m still not sure what the CD name is yet.

Scott Caplener has already provided a terrific image for the cover.

Acoustic guitar shopping

I’m still shopping.  Here’s where I landed..

The Breedlove CM: NO GO.  Not loud/present enough.

The Taylor 522ce:  same deal.. loved it until I got to a songwriting circle and played it acoustically.

Now I have it narrowed down to TWO guitars.  Taylor DN7 and Gibson Advanced Jumbo.

I have an issue with buying anything from Gibson right now.  The CEO is (IMHO) kind of a prick.  See this.  Gibson was GUILTY, and he’s essentially thumbing his nose at the government and the process by introducing new models playing off of the raids the government has made as a result of Gibson not following the rules.    So ultimately, I’m leaning toward the Taylor even though I like the sound of the Gibson a bit more.

So I’m voting with my conscious now.  Hopefully I’ll end up really liking the Taylor.  More to play, but I’m pretty sure.  Watch this space…

RPM Challenge – update 3

We had our session on Saturday and got a lot done… came out with 12 recordings in various shades of being complete.   Now we’re in the process of figuring out what we have… what is a workable song idea, which ones need further developing, etc.  Spent two nights in the studio this week so far (including tonight).  Hopefully this RPM won’t result in lots of last minute churn and work/rework.

For more info about RPM:  RPM Challenge.

RPM Challenge – update 2

So a few modifications to our plan.  We are not going to revisit previously released material.  Instead, we’re developing both new ideas from scratch as well as working on ideas we each had in our respective pockets.  We’ll be collaborating in a recording session on February 1 with drummer extraordinaire Michael Tornatore.


I’m contributing a few song ideas that I came up with in my recent Big Sur songwriting retreat.

Our goal is to record as much of the music as possible together in the same room.  Like all best laid plans, we’ll see how this one goes… but it should be a fabulously creative time.

RPM Challenge 2014

Here we go again.

John Rose, Michael Nold and I are ON for the RPM Challenge… record a full CD in the month of February.  This year we are doing something different.

In previous years we wrote and recorded the music in the same month.  This is sort of the extreme version of the challenge.  This year, I suggested we pull from the ~4 years of RPM Challenge music we’ve already written and choose the 10 best songs to re-record and release.  The idea is we will all go into the studio together and record basic tracks, then massage them over the month.

In some ways it will be easier, but in some ways harder.  We’ll need to nail the music in the studio, which means rehearsal and practice in advance of the recording date.  Then we will need to pull in the right drummer for the sessions (feelers are out right now).   Finally comes overdubbing and sweetening with new parts, etc.

I’ll post here as we go and let you know the progress… hopefully we’ll end up with something very cool and more cohesive than we had in the past.

acoustic guitar shopping

I’m finally in the market for my first nice acoustic guitar.  My Epiphone has done me quite well through the years, but it’s time for something with a bit more depth.  I’ve been playing guitars from Breedlove, Martin, Taylor, and more.  So far I haven’t fallen in love with the sound of anything yet.   I fell in love with the looks of the   Breedlove Voice CM (below), but unfortunately I didn’t have the sound I was looking for.


I have been writing a lot on acoustic, including experiments in alternate tuning and partial capos.  I’ve also been enjoying some casual songwriting circles where I can test out new songs in their early stages.   I’m not sure if my next record will be an acoustic one or not, but that sure seems like the way things are heading.  I’ll definitely introduce my new guitar when the time comes.

new projects in the works

I have a few things I’m currently working on.


I recently took a trip to big sur as a songwriting retreat.  I came back with ~10 song ideas that I’m very excited about.  Not sure about the form, but these songs will eventually come out.  I have also been collaborating on some more singer/songwriter music with a few friends.  I have been dipping back into my old catalog and re-arranging some of my older music as acoustic pieces for live performance.


I have also been experimenting with some less mainstream music.  Strange offbeat loops mixed with vocal fragments and sparse instrumentation… hard to describe much better than that.


Watersaw is taking a break right now but there is some talk about recording in early 2014, plus another Lizz Roman & Dancers collaboration in the spring.