Archive for March, 2010

wednesday wallop #13 > deep blue sea

Wednesday, March 31st, 2010
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ahhhh spring. Don’t you love it? This time of year gets a lot of folks outside. It is a funny thing being a musician, we spend a lot of time indoors, in basements, in darkened studios, in clubs lacking sun, or into the night…so it is. I have not done a whole lot of outdoor gigs. I think I have done probably less than 50 outdoor gigs, mostly festivals. The biggest festivals I have done were Flevo in Netherlands and Joy in Belgium (10 – 30 thousand). I did play Sonshine a few years ago – but we were put on a flatbed on the back 40 somewhere (10 – 30 total…no thousands)…I also played a cow pasture once – I think it was just the band and roadies for that one…anyway – what am I trying to say? Well – “deep blue sea” is a wavy, sail, boat n underwater maybe a tad beachy concoction…perky percussion…scat chorus…break beats. What – you may ask – do break beats have to do with the outdoors? Can’t say really – I am just trying to tie this all together. I have a “sinking” down vocal that is a result of some processing – I can’t go this low naturally, but you probably knew that. This song also features a vocal / instrumental melt down on the bridge that was so wrong it ended up being right. It was so bad it was good. That’s my opinion anyway – it’s not like I have to convince a label to release it (ha ha hah)…ahem, so, please enjoy, I mean – after all – there is a lot of noisy, angry, tense, frustrating, hateful sounds going around…this isn’t one of them…

deep blue sea

wednesday wallop #12 > we will rise

Wednesday, March 24th, 2010
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what started out as an experiment in distortion, morphed into a kind of industrial / electronica thingy…you can hear a rather severe “drum crunch” distortion, and lots of swirls…I played around with different titles…hail hail, rise, hear it in the distance…”we will rise” won out. We have a wall o’sound chorus attempt, some vocoder, and a pinch o synth (hehe) actually – I think this is my heaviest “synth” song to date. I sometimes like synths, but I like acoustic too, there is real guitar and bass here as well (listen to the instrumental)…yeah – all that stuff digital, tape, tubes, hi tech, organic, hybrid whatever would be the best description I guess…lets see, where was I…ummm, sorry, I digress…without any further ado,

we will rise

hail hail oh my Lord
I’ve been searching for a brand new chord
and I hear it in the distance
yes I hear it in the distance
praise praise to my king
I’ve been looking for the words to sing
and I hear it in the distance
yes I hear it in the distance

we will we will rise (2x)

glory glory to the lamb
we’ve been given here a brand new jam
and I hear it in the distance
yes I hear it in the distance

good Christ kingdom come
wake this world with the beating drum
and I hear it in the distance
yes I hear it in the distance

we will we will rise (4x)

instrumental

for the mountains may be removed and the hills may shake
but My lovingkindness will not be removed from you
and My covenant of peace will not be shaken
says the LORD who has compassion on you

we will we will rise (4X)

new song > home on the other side

Wednesday, March 17th, 2010
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this was a dub / reggae tune I finished on the Friday we left for Texas. Sometimes I find it a little bit manic / frantic getting a song ready a week ahead of time. The song itself, conceptually, was written years ago while I lived in Holland. I was working as a cleaner in a gigantic chemical company… and I had a notebook that I carried with me to learn the Dutch language…this was actually one of the main ways I learned Dutch at the time. I remember one time hauling this gigantic hose with boiling water to a room to clean and I saw a large skull and crossbones with the word “gevaarlijk” , dang I thought, that must be a serious something of a word. I asked later what the word meant – and learned it meant dangerous – as I was in a main electrical area. Looking back on it mixing huge quantities of water and electricity probably would qualify for dangerous. Anyway – along with the language this work allowed me untold hours of autopilot work where I could rehearse and write songs (in my head) and that I did. Home on the other side was one of these. I couldn’t find the original lyrics… but I remember something with “salvation stereo”…oh well, that was then. I had the pleasure of Rick joining me for some guitar work…thanks Rick! I took a stab at a piano solo – one take – and though “why not” so it stayed. I also had to have some help tweaking the song after I hit the road – thanks Matt for your help! I am still in Texas as I post this – we are planning on going to Mexico tomorrow – but in order to keep the Weekly Wallop intact – one must do what one must do.

Home on the other side

I got a home on the other side
I got a home on the other side, yeah
2X

Lord in the land of things appearances that swell and seem,
Help me to walk by the other light supreme.
Seeing invisible wings in thick veils and coverings,
Show me your facts behind mans vaguest dream.

I got a home on the other side
I got a home on the other side, yeah
2X

Death haunts our souls with strife,
The harp of faith is the sound of life,
Fretted strings that slacken still and into the unknown.
Oh God you do lift me as I rise
Your blood dripped and flowed,
surprised
I can enter where the spirit wind has blown.

I got a home on the other side
I got a home on the other side, yeahhh
2X

instrumental out

new song > don’t feed the drummer

Wednesday, March 10th, 2010
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actually it’s not a song…it’s a piece. A piece of what, you might ask? It is a piece of the jungle…162 beats a minute. We could say it is a kind of jungle music – there certainly isn’t any proper singing in this one. Originally I was going to call it jungle amp because I was drinking a Mountain Dew Amp when the inspiration hit, then it went to jungle boogie – and, well, here we are. This was – admittedly a strange day musically. I was working on one hand on the fastest song I have done to date – “don’t feed the drummer”- @ 162 beats a minute. I was also getting ready for next Wednesdays Wallop – which turned out being a reggae / dub groove clocking in at 60 beats a minute, yes – my slowest song to date…what?…then I was working on another song with Rick – which was an acoustic strumming number – featuring his spectacular voice and songwriting skills… you get the idea.

Anyway, back to todays WW – dftd has a lot of strange effects, from its gigantic winged intro – landing, to the last severed wire, blips, screeches, frantic, and I do mean frantic drums, djembe solo, zweeps, Über panning – throughout the whole piece, backwards masking, polyrhythms a feedback crescendo that would make Angus Young blush…it is probably more an attitude than a song per se.. Fasten your seat belt. Step right up – one at a time – no pushing please…

don’t feed the drummer

new music, a cable tv gig, and Texas

Monday, March 8th, 2010
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I do have a bit of a time crunch happening right now, as we (myself and some family) are planning on going to Texas this week (Friday). I am working on 2 songs for the Weekly Wallop as I will not have access to my studio next week, and I am working on a new gig producing a cable TV jingle and sound bed for an infomercial. I also have a guest coming in to record some songs of his own Wednesday – and my own band is going to practice. Right. You know the old saying – if you want to get something done – give it to the busy guy.

new song > water and wine

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010
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really cutting this one to the wire…I was looking through my audio sketches, and saw “bacon song” and the rough vocal track was there. I remember I had this idea while I was upstairs cooking bacon, and I had to hurry and get in down – before the bacon burned :-)…this is one of the reasons I think it is important to have a user friendly recording environment – switch, switch – record – done…. I finally had a chance to work it out in this weeks WW (Wednesday Wallop) I tried some different drum grooves and simply wasn’t happy until I hit this fat stompin house kick, a kind of 4 on the floor – with complementary bass. the water and wine lyric fell into place as the chorus came together…I originally wanted to do a megaphone type vocal – but not really sure I pulled it off…anyway…In case you are wondering – I am not a music snob, I am happy to try almost anything if it might make the idea work – same with equipment – I will use almost anything, and sometimes do, to execute the idea. lyrics

water and wine

well I was so dry
and then I
thought I would die
because I
just lived the lie
I was all alone so chained and sadly

And then you came in
and then you
set me free from sin
when you
showed the state I was in
you let me drink so pure and gladly

water and wine
cooly cooly
water and wine
oh so sweet
water and wine
my Lord truly
water and wine
I’m going to kneel before your feet yeah

I feel so free
because of
what you’ve done for me
I wanna
help the folks see
your love so deep so strong so madly

water and wine
cooly cooly
water and wine
oh so sweet
water and wine
my Lord truly
water and wine
I’m going to kneel before your feet

bridge

water and wine
cooly cooly
water and wine
oh so sweet
water and wine
my Lord truly
water and wine
I’m going to kneel before your feet (2X)