Dive - Day 1 (a sample)
Here's a rough mix of "Dive" at the early stage. What you're hearing are the drums, bass, one track of dulcimer and four tracks of vocals. Everything but the drums is a "scratch track", which means it's just there as a placemarker and will be re-recorded.
I first wanted to get the drums situated with the right amount of push and emotion (they're Garageband Loops, but played by a real person on a real drum set.) Then I laid down the dulcimer track to get an idea of how the two would work together. From that combo came the "feel" for the lyrics and laying down of lead and harmony parts. This may not be the way it all ends up down the road, some parts may change. In fact, the bass is a software instrument in GB triggered by my playing of the Roland Fantom keyboard. To get the right feel, I will probably call in an actual bass player to do the track. You'll hear a little shimmering audio artifact with some of the higher frequencies (like cymbals), which is due to the type of MP3 compression that I used.
This is as raw as it gets and it's just a half-day's work, but it will give you an idea of the first steps towards taking an idea and bringing it around to a full-blown recording.