Tag Archive: video


Geez and wow, is it Saturday already??

As I’m typing this, it’s 11:41 PM (start time) on Friday, so technically it’s on the cusp of Saturday.  Man oh man, what a week it’s been!  I started out being in DC on Sunday, came back to Atlanta, worked, hung out with friends, went to work… ya know the normal stuff.

Then, there was the internet version of my week: another online interview, tracking my views for videos on YouTube (the “Obama” one is now getting an average of 10,000 views per day), getting letters from radio DJs/listeners saying my song is being played on their station, accepting MySpace friends (now at over 400 – not bad, considering I had 250 prior to this whole thing starting)…

All that, and I still have a video to make!

I swear, it feels like I’m living a double-life right now.  I have all this stuff I do online to get my music out, yet I go about my normal life as if all that stuff isn’t happening. 

Well, at least I TRY to.  I don’t usually bring up my exploits or what I’m doing unless somebody asks me – I’m always of the thought that they don’t REALLY want to hear about it unless they ask.  These days, though, I get asked a LOT. 

I go to work now, and the first thing I’ll usually get is someone asking me what my next video’s going to be about, or how many hits my videos have on YouTube, or if they can be in my videos – an odd thing for me, considering that I was asking people a few weeks ago to be in my videos and… well, I didn’t get ignored, I just didn’t get an answer, or would here a “sure,” followed by a no-show appearance. 

It’s funny how perceived fame can make people view you different, even if slightly.  But I don’t feel like analyzing that tonight.  The thing that bugs me out is, despite the growing radio play, offers, media attention, whatever, at the end of the day the goal hasn’t been reached yet, which is to get PAID for my music!!

I just sent my song off to ASCAP so that I can get paid whenever my song is played on the radio, yet that can take 6 months or longer to get paid from.  I have a mixtape coming out Sunday that I can’t charge for because it uses other people’s beats, and the album I’m making that I CAN get paid for isn’t coming out until August 24th (it’s called “building anticipation” – first the free stuff, then the stuff you make people pay for). 

Until then, I’m relying soley on my job for money (ugh) and donations from fans of my music.  When I first told my brother I’d be setting up a link for people to donate money, he thought it was a dumb idea – “Nobody’s gonna donate money without getting something in return” was his main thought.

But lo and behold: people have actually started to donate some money to help me out!

I have it set up so that people can donate whatever amount they want, be it a penny, one dollar, five dollars, ten-thousand dollars, whatever!  I’m not picky about how much a person donates, I’m just happy that they care enough to do so.  With that said, I have been receiving some donations, and I just want to say to those people, THANK YOU. 

For those of you who haven’t donated, perhaps you’d like to know where your donation money will go:

  1. OBTAINING BETTER EQUIPMENT.  The current recording devices I use now aren’t the best in quality – I use an H2 Zoom microphone which is really better used for talk radio recording; a basic Fruitly Loops program (i.e. doesn’t contain all the bells and whisles a full program has to offer); and a Kodak 6.1 MegaPixel camera to record videos.  In short, I’d like to be able to upgrade ALL these items so I can provide better-sounding material and higher-quality videos.
  2. STUDIO TIME.  There are several songs I’ve written that would require me to scream, shout, or use inflections with higher voice ranges… and I can’t record them.  Why? Because I record all this stuff in my apartment, and have neighbors that would complain.  Extra money would mean being able to record my songs in a sound-proof environment where I could yell ’til my heart was content!
  3. TOURING/TRAVEL FUNDS.  People have been requesting me to do performances in different states – but I can’t get there because I have no (a) car, or (b) money set aside for travel expenses.  Even if I only stayed someplace for one night, I wouldn’t be able to afford the hotel – well, I would, if I had donation money set aside!
  4. TITHING.  I grew up in the church, and believe whole-heartedly in giving back 10% to God and/or charitable causes.  And, being in Atlanta, there are certainly many churches I could give back to!

If you’d like to donate money, it’s very easy – click on the link at the top of the page that says “Donations and Charities,” and give whatever is in your heart, people!!

Okay, so onto this week’s video: it’s the second part of the video I debut last week, “Crank That (Yeah!),” a song that was a lil’ out of my lane, but necessary to set up for this week’s song.  I don’t want to say to much about it, except to say it’s kind of a diss at old-school rappers who are constantly complaining about how the current generation is “killing hip-hop.”  I hate when they say that because… dang – I’ll have to finish that thought on Sunday!

I’ll probably post the video up late because my 14-year old cousin is going to be visiting me, and I’m hoping I have time to give him a little cameo in the video.  He has friends that are fans of mine (geez, that’s weird to type), so I figured it might be a big thing for him to be in it.  Or it could be a small thing and he may not want to do it.  Either way, it’s a small enough part to where I can film and edit the rest of the video before he gets here, and add his part in last.

Okay, it’s officially Saturday (12:09 PM)!  Let’s see, is there anything else I need to type… oh, yeah:

THE O-BAMA MIXTAPE DROPS SUNDAY, JULY 27TH!!! Make sure you download your copy on that day!!

-A.P.T.

P.S. Oh, I almost forgot: here is another video someone did with my song, “Obama, Obama.”  I have people re-making videos for my songs now – how awesome is THAT?!?

E-mail: aptsongs@hotmail.com
MySpace: myspace.com/notoriousapt

MULTIPLE “Obama, Obama” Ringtones Now Available!! Preview Them HERE: “Obama, Obama” Ringtone – 2.99 *Only 1.99, this week only (July 8-15, 2008)!

Hey everybody!

People have been asking me how I set up and record my videos.  So, I made a video explaining how I make my videos.  It’s an interesting process, so take a look!

Oh yeah – NEW MUSIC VIDEO TOMORROW!!

-A.P.T.

E-mail: aptsongs@hotmail.com

MULTIPLE “Obama, Obama” Ringtones Now Available!! Preview Them HERE: “Obama, Obama” Ringtone – 2.99 *Only 1.99, this week only (July 8-15, 2008)!

Hey everybody!

Wow, what an awesome 24 hours it has been.  So many good things have happened, I can’t even tell you about all of it yet, lest I end up jinxing myself.

I will say this, though: my “Obama, Obama” video AND song has started to take off.  In the last week, the song has been downloaded from this site 360 times (and counting), and the video has been watched by over 35,390 people as of this typing.  And that’s just on YouTube – the video has been re-posted by other people on other sites, and THOSE sites have been getting views too.  I couldn’t be happier!

But for me, the better victory is the fact that my other non-parodied ORIGINAL songs are also getting quite a bit of views, too!  This past week’s song/video, “The Nigger Song,” has been seen by over 400 people since Sunday and downloaded 28 times.  Meanwhile, my other songs have also been getting decent downloads. 

All of this is great news because it means (a) I’m starting to grow a fan-base, and (b) I’m able to have actual data to show off to record companies should I decide to go out and look for one.  Of course, I’d rather them come to me, which may happen sooner than expected because….

Nah – I’ll save THAT for later!

One rather interesting thing has happened since the “Obama” video has taken off: people I used to know in college that I tried keeping in touch with afterward, yet couldn’t get them to write me, call me, or even post messages on my various walls (MySpace, Facebook, etc.)… have tried to contact me!  I had one girl (name withheld) write to congratulate me, and wanted to know where I was and what I was up to, while a guy who I tried asking for help to get on a while back hit me up to let me know he was thiiiiiis close to making it.

What a croc, right?!?  I tried keeping up with these people after college and they wouldn’t spend two minutes to write me back, and now they suddenly wanna be all like, “Hey A.P.T., what up??”  And I haven’t even made any money off this whole thing yet!  I can’t imagine the type of calls/messages I’ll be getting once the fame and fortune comes.  I can see it now…

“Hey, Aaron – I saw you on Jimmy Kimmel the other night, and just wanted to say: can I come by your hotel room and —- your —-?? I promise I’ll be gentle!”

(For those of you with gutter minds, the blanks are for the words “wash” and “feet.” You sicko, you.)

Even with all the excitement surrounding my current videos, I’m always thinking about my upcoming videos.  I have advanced ideas for future videos – like, 2 to 4 weeks from now – as well as this week’s upcoming video.  I’ve already plotted it out, and my brother (yes, I have a brother) and his girlfriend have agreed to help me via phone, much in the same way my friend Michelle did for the “Back to the Future” video.  Again, still can’t figure out why people in-state won’t help while out-of-towners are more than willing, but hey – I’ll get help wherever I can!

That’s all for me.  I have to go prepare for tomorrow’s next move… more on that later!

-A.P.T.

MULTIPLE “Obama, Obama” Ringtones Now Available!! Preview Them HERE: “Obama, Obama” Ringtone – 2.99 *Only 1.99, this week only (July 8-15, 2008)!

E-mail: aptsongs@hotmail.com

This week’s song/video is called “Smile 4 Dad (Letter 2 My Father)”.

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INSIGHT INTO A SONG:

This past week has been, surprisingly, emotionally tough for me.

My Dad died when I was 9 years old, at the age of 41, from lung cancer tumors.  At the time… well, me and him were very, very close, and his death hit me real hard.

Of course, as time goes by, one tends to be less emotional when talking about their dead relative.  See – I can even call him a dead relative and not be bothered by it!

It’s been 17 years since his death, and I’m long past the days where I’d cry every time I thought about him, or get upset when I’d heard a certain song on the radio that reminded me of him.  To this day, I still can’t listen to Whitney Houston’s “I Will Always Love You” without wanting to break down in tears.  Clearly, that song is not on my iPod.

However, this week it hit me real hard.  Part of it is because (a) Father’s day is celebrated today, and (b) my parents anniversary was June 11th.  Had he still been alive, they would have been happily married for 30 years.

I decided to get my Mom an anniversary card to mark what would have been a momentous occasion.  She never remarried, so I figured that, after 17 years, she should be able to receive acknowledgement of her marriage date.  I went to Target to pick out a card…

…and it’s very hard to find a card that doesn’t say “Hope you 2 celebrate the day together.”  I had to read through almost 15 different cards before I found one that said “Happy Anniversary, Congratulations on your Achievments.”  In the process of doing so, I started to get real emotional.  Just thinking about the fact that other people are out there celebrating marriages, some by people who aren’t even in a happy relationship, while my mom lost a great guy who…

Sigh… well, it annoys me.

Anyway… so, in the midst of all this, I found this beat online with the chorus already mixed in.  It’s a very interesting chorus, talking about “Smile like you mean it” and “Say goodbye, to the world you thought you lived in…” and the beat itself was very upbeat.

I didn’t know if I’d be able to do anything with the beat at first, but then I started thinking that the subject matter of the chorus would match well with a song about my Dad.  It took me about 2 hours to write the song, messing with a few ideas here and there and finally deciding the song should be an open letter to my Dad about how I felt about his death and the time since then.

Some Interesting Tidbits About the Song:

(1) Most of my songs have a voice-over dub, where I say a lyric in a song twice to make it stand out.  However, I wanted this one to sound like I was speaking directly to him, and no one has a voice-over dub when they talk to someone.

(2) The line in the song where I say, “Finding out you had that tumor nearly ripped my ass apart/Oops, sorry – I meant ‘behind’,” is pointing out that, as kids, we weren’t allowed to curse around our parents.  The “oops” is in reference to the fact that I “accidentally” said “ass” in the previous line.  Genius!

INSIGHT INTO A VIDEO SHOOT:

This video ended up being a two-day shoot – a lot for me, considering I like to be able to do my videos in less than an hour.

I wanted to make the majority of the video look like a dream.  The video is in black and white because most books say that people dream in black and white.  I don’t know what they’re talking about – I can clearly see color in my dreams – but it made for a good contrast between when I’m in the “real” world versus the “dream” world.  I also posterlized the video so it would seem less like reality.

I shot the video in the park because (a) I live right across the street from it, and (b) my Dad took us (I have a brother) to the park a LOT as kids.  The hardest part of the shoot was trying to make it look like I was alone by myself.  On the first day of the shoot, it was sunny outside, and there were a LOT of people running around. I wanted to shoot on the playground at the swing, the slide, and the baseball field, but they were crowded with people.

Then, it rained, and I couldn’t keep filming.  2 days later, I planned to film again, but it rained early in the morning real hard.

I wasn’t going to shoot anything, and was going to delay the video… but then the rain stopped, it got a little bit lighter outside, and it hit me: since the playground was wet, nobody would be out there using any of the equipment!

I got my camera and ran to the playground.  Sure enough: NOBODY.  Well, a few drifters here and there, but for the most part, I had the place to myself.

Okay, so this is where I get all “artsy”: The theme of the video is “The Last Day.”  I wanted to film it as though I was spending one last day with my Dad at the playground, and the things in the video are activities I did with him when he was alive.

In the first sets of shots, I slide down the slide, swing on the swing set, and run around the bases on the field.  During the last few shots, however, those same places are revisited, only now there is less activity going on there because my Dad is no longer around: there’s no one to cheer me on at the slide, push me on the swing set, or play catch/baseball with me on the field.  I’m looking around to see him, but I’m the only one there…

Intermixed with that footage is footage of me “writing” the letter (i.e. the song) to my Dad.  I actually had about 8 mintues of footage of me doing this, but the few shots I have in there were enough.

Towards the end, I run into the field and collapse on the ground.  I was most impressed with this shot because I wanted myself to be at the very bottom of the screen, contrasting with the huge set of clouds – i.e. heaven – that my Dad has now gone into that I, for the moment, cannot follow.  I set up a fake camera stand for all my shots, but since I’m the only one doing all the filming, I never know how a shot is going to turn out until I review it, and this one came out great.

As for the ending… well, you’ll have to watch.  However, there is a cameo by my Dad at the end of the video.

So, that’s all the insight I can think about for this song/video!  I don’t do too many “serious” or “emotional” songs, so I hope you enjoy my attempt at it here.

That’s all for now – see you next Sunday! (And, happy father’s day to those whose fathers have come and gone.)

-A.P.T.

E-mail: aptsongs@hotmail.com

A.P.T. Here!

Greetings!  This whole “writing one song a week” thing is really starting to get the ideas flowing!  However, the last thing I expected to happen was for my water-works to start flowing too!

First of all, very few things make me cry.  I mean, very, very, very, VERY few things make me cry, or even tear up.  I tend to be rather level-headed about stuff, and don’t let things upset me enough to the point where I feel like bawling.

However, there are a few things that can, if not make me cry, at least get me in the mood to cry.

And one of those things… is the topic of this upcoming Sunday’s song/video!

I can’t reveal too much about it now – you’ll get the insight about the song on Sunday – but for now, let’s just say that, given the week that it is (which will also be revealed), I felt compelled to write this song, and it’s been all I can do not to break down and start crying. 

Even now, when I was recording the song, I could feel the tears welling up… of course, I was able to stop myself, but for me, ALMOST crying is about the same as crying.  It’s just that, the subject matter of the song… well, I can’t really explain it too much, except to say that it clearly hits a soft spot with me.

So, anyway… I just recorded the verse for it, now I have to double it… then again, I might just keep it the way it is.  Sometimes raw emotion is better than layered emotion.  Expect the song and video to be drastically different from what I’ve done in the past, people!

That’s all for now – I’ll give u all more updates later!

-A.P.T.

This week’s song/video is called “Your Mom’s a Ho!”

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INSIGHT INTO A SONG:

Some of the songs I come up with can take weeks, months, or even YEARS before they’re complete.  Others, like this week’s song, are finished in less than 3 or 4 days!

I’m always freestyling lyrics and choruses when I’m by myself, and I was at work one day when I suddenly thought of a funny chorus:

“Your mother is a ho/and if you didn’t know before, now you know…”

That’s it – that’s all I had.  I didn’t know if it would make a good song or not, but I have a very simple theory to test a song idea: if I sing the chorus, and don’t write it down, and can remember the chorus the next day, it’ll make for a good song.

So, I stopped singing the chorus, and went two full days without singing it.  On the 3rd day, it popped in my head again.  Clearly, I had a hit on my hands.

I actually finished this song last week, and because I started this site I was able to challenge myself to finish writing it by Saturday so that I’d have time to record a video for it.  Once I finished it, I made the video – which took 2 hours – and edited it, which took another THREE hours.  When I tried to publish it, though, there was a file error, and it wouldn’t save the video as I had edited it.

Luckily, I have other videos stored up.  I posted up “Shout Out 2 My Big Girls” which gave me time during the week to figure out the file error.  It all came down to one small clip that was corrupted, which I fixed!

Some Interesting Tidbits:

(1) A few of the shots in the video are videos of videos I found on the internet (i.e. one scene with a girl screaming, and one with 2 girls kissing.)  There was a shot I had of a video of a girl going down on a guy – I had to make sure his member never entered into the frame – but I thought that was going a lil’ TOO far, especially since most people already have an idea of what that looks like!

(2) The line – “but little did you know that she goes both ways” – is takin’ from a Dr. Dre song called “XXXplosive” where one of the guys says: “And I’ll bet u didn’t know that she goes both ways.”  I heard that song so much from DJs playing it at parties I went to in college, so I figured that line would be a great addition here.

(3) My favorite line in the song is: “She got 5 kids and 6 baby fathers/ and none of them brothas stop by to holla!” I was in the shower taking a break from making the song when I thought of that line, and I burst out laughing!  I remember seeing the movie “First Sunday” where LeeJohn says he got his name because his mom said she didn’t know which guy – Lee or John – had fathered him, so she gave him both names.  Things like that happen when your mom’s a ho!

That’s all for now – enjoy the song, and I’ll see you next Sunday!

-A.P.T.

E-mail: aptsongs@hotmail.com

Hey everybody!

Well, another week is coming to a close.  Thank goodness! 

I had 3 full days off work this week, and I used those days to make as much headway into my various projects as possible.  OH, you didn’t know I had a life outside of work?  Well, let me assure you, I am a VERY creative guy!

I spent the 3 days getting some much-needed personal errands run – paying bills, cleaning (and re-messying up) my place, grocery shopping, etc… but the BIG thing I did was to revamp my website for my book!

Oh, you didn’t know I had written a book?  Well, I did!  I actually wrote it 4 years ago, and even sold a few copies of it back in 2006 for $39.99 each… but up until a few weeks ago I didn’t really know how to advertise for it.

Then, I read Tim Ferriss’s book, “The 4-Hour Workweek” and figured out how to do it!  But, before I go and place a link on yahoo or Google for the site, I figured the website I made for the book 2 years ago needed a touch-up.  And so, that’s what I did – it’s about 85% complete now, and I’ll be putting a link up for it on Yahoo and/or Google sometime next week!

With all the stuff I did involving my other site, I still remembered that I have to put a video/song up on this one for Sunday!  The video I’m putting up this week is for a HILARIOUS song I wrote!  I thought of the chorus for the song while at work one day, and just KNEW I had to complete it! 

I’ll give you more insight into the song come Sunday. Truthfully, I shot the video for it LAST week, but due to some file errors (read: I. HATE. WINDOWS. MOVIE. MAKER.)  I wasn’t able to publish it.  So, I’ll be spending the majority of Saturday re-editing it, but once it’s done, I think you all will definetely appreicate it!

Okay, that’s all for now – see you Sunday!

-A.P.T.

This week’s song/video is called “Erectile Dysfunction” (A Parody of Snoop Dogg’s “Sensual Seduction”) – Appeared on “The O-bama Mixtape!”

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INSIGHT INTO A SONG:

Last December, Snoop Dogg released his song, “Sensual Seduction,” and after one listen, I KNEW this song would be ripe for a parody!  After taking two days to figure out what I could use as subject matter that would sound close to the phonetics of the original song, I suddenly thought of “Erectile Dysfunction” and burst out laughing!

Clearly, this was a good idea to run with.

I recorded it and wanted to get the song out there, but I had two problems: one, I didn’t have time to put a REAL video together because it was around Christmas and staying with family; and two, I wasn’t too familiar with any free MP3 download sites.  So, I found a bunch of pictures online, pasted them and put them together on www.onetruemedia.com, loaded up the music and made a crappy-ass video for the song, figuring it wouldn’t get much play, but I could at least send it out to my friends via youtube.

Imagine my surprise when, one day after putting it on youtube, it had 120 views – and I hadn’t even told anyone about the song yet!

5 months later, the song just passed the 10,000 view mark.  My brother’s girlfriend’s brother, who goes to VCU, said it was the #1 downloaded song at his school – odd, given that I didn’t give a link address for the download of the song until last month.  Guess someone must have recorded it and sent it around – and I couldn’t be happier about it!

So, enjoy the song! Come back next week for another song, courtesy of me!

-A.P.T.

*UPDATE: After the project ended, I started working on another website featuring a character named Non Juan, a puppet who is terrible at getting ladies to date him.  One of the music videos we shot for him was a remake of “Erectile Dysfunction” recorded in his voice.  This is the video that now takes the place of the original video which, as you may recall, was very, very crappy.  Enjoy!” – A.P.T., May 18, 2010.*

E-mail: aptsongs@hotmail.com