A couple years ago, my sisters and I decided to make a recording of ourselves singing Christmas music for my dad. It was a labour of love that soon turned into a private purgatory of all those who were involved. We recorded it at night, after Dad had gone to bed, using a karaoke machine which we plugged into the computer, and which picked up, in addition to our voices, every click and whir that the computer made. We recorded it in the living room, in between the chimes of the clock telling each quarter hour, and we all had miserable colds that left us with raw throats and strained voices. When regular cold remedies proved useless, we took to consuming great quantities of drink: cocoa, hot toddies, wine, or whisky, straight up, depending on the age of the drinker. The strong, warm libations were quite effective for relaxing the vocal chords, and getting us through each song, but the experience was still miserable. By the time we finished, we had eight songs to our credit. We cordially hated each and every one of them, and would have been just as pleased never to hear them again.
Not too long ago, by sheerest accident, I came across one of the songs we had managed to produce under such adverse conditions, and was rather surprised by how nicely it had turned out. The quality is not the best - it sounds a bit like some long lost, primitive recording of folk music from the 50s, but for all that, the arrangement is satisfactory, and the voices blend rather better than any of us remembered them doing.