what is Watercolor after all?
You know, if you invent a music genre, you also have the privilege to define the parametres of it.
However, if you only think that you invented a music genre, you still have the privilege to define the parameters of it and merely by using these silly parametres, lo, you can say that you've actually invented it! No matter how many similar things are made before, they are not the same, because they aren't following your rules. Easy, eh?
[Actually, I lied. I invented nothing. All the songs in the Watercolors are afraid of Chuck Norris and they simply try to hide away from him, amongst each other. That's the big trick. Trust me.]
So, let's see what kind of rules make a real, traditional Watercolor. Of course, if you're inspired by them and want to do something similar, you can skip this bullsh-- and give any kind of name you wish. Seriously, will I sue you, jinx you, or troll you on the Internet if you create a "non-standard" Watercolor? Of course not.
1. A Watercolor should contain at least 25, but not more than 30 songs
Really simple. If it's too long it's tiring. Too short - it doesn't give that Watercolor-ish "sensation". Trust me, it's tested.
2. One song from one artist
Don't use two or more songs from one artist or the same song from multiple artist. Boring. Again, so easy. However, you can still use different versions of a song as long as the artist remains the same. It helps you a lot. Also, you can use a song as many times as you wish.
3. Every song must be recongisable
At least once, you must use a "characteristic" part of every song - a part which can be recognised easily. If not, it's unfair (see later!).
4. Every sound used in a Watercolor must belong to any of the songs.
Eg. if you want to have glassbreak in a Watercolor, you must use a song in which you can hear that very same glassbreak. It's hard indeed, but Watercolor is about mixing existing songs. Yes, this means you can't use "random" samples just to perform an exciting effects or to hide a mistake you made. Listen many kind of music carefully and you'll be surprised how awesome things can be found in many, many songs.
5. Any songs composed or performed by you are out
I think it's evident. Obviously, you can use eg. the original version of a song even if you also performed it with your band.
6. A Watercolor must have a start and an end
It acts like a "song" - so, start and finish it somehow. Not that essential, but nice ^_^ In between, try to create an "audio-arch" in which the parts are coming from somewhere and "travelling" towards something. Or something like that.
7. Any kind of audio effect can be used 'till every song remains recognisable at least once
Sometimes - eg. speed-alteration, time stretch, panning - merely for matching the songs. (Oh my, did you really think that all those tracks had the same key and tempo?) Sometimes - eg. flanger, reverb - because it sounds good. Still, don't "distort" anything in a totally nonsence form (or if you do, use it elsewhere "undistorted" as well).
7. Keep it diverse!
Mixing songs of the same genre is neither fun nor agile. Franky, a DJ can do that way better - and in live! Watercolor is about something different. Use at least one songs from the following categories: (1) music of the 60's/70's (2) music of the 80's (3) music of the 90's/2000s (4) recent hit (last 2 years) (5) recent hit native to your country (6) "alternative" music (something which not typically appears in "commercial" music stations) (7) alternative music native to your country (8) movie soundtrack (or musical). Don't use The Beatles (find out why ^_^)
8. Mix the songs, not only attach them
Create layers (2 or more songs can be heard in the same time), crossfades (one fades in, one fades out), slicing (2 or more songs rapidly alternate) etc. Keep it organic, it should sound like a "natural" thing. On the other hand, don't use the same tempo for the whole Watercolor, it gets boring.
Most importantly: listen to the Watercolors on this page and you'll understand what I'm trying to talk about. If you're not interested, why did you read this long and unimportant text at all?