Back when I was chatting with Resa, I had a few ideas for music running around in my brain. I did do the recording of The Great Blue’s Blues, but the other blues based song I had thought of was still in my head. Last night I finally had a chance to go back and play with it. I don’t know if I’d call the results “the blues”, but I like it a lot. I hope you do too:
So Resa posted some photos of a great mural of a Great Blue Heron. Now, I love me those great blues, so I had to comment about it. And, of course, talking about “those blues”, the subject of The Blues came up. So, after some discussion, I knew I had to play Resa some blues.
Without further discussion, here is The Great Blue’s Blues:
In a post last week I said that I was working on a new song. Well, I finished it over the weekend. It started with a little part I wanted to record so that I would remember it. From there it turned into a real pop song. Yeah, with words and everything!
A few quick comments before I turn you lose with this. Although parts of this recording are “finished”, this is very much just a quick demo, or, if this were one of my stories, this is a rough, first draft (don’t worry – if you have read a story on my blog, it was a rough draft….). I can hear many things I will change if I decided do this a little more seriously. And I might.
So after spending too much time doing that old craft of setting Bach to Moog Synthesizer, I have started to actually write my own music again. Sort of… But there are consequences.
I have written about this many times, but I have a difficult time being deeply involved in more than one art (craft). If I am deep into visual arts, and I mean really studying it, not just a few quick sketches or creating a book cover for my latest, I am not deep into writing or writing new music. The same with writing a book. The deeper I am into it, the less time I have for music.
One of my recent projects has been recording JS Bach’s Little Fugue in G Minor with a synthesizer. I will post the video here in case you you want to hear it but don’t want to read about it. Be aware that I did a few fumbles, but I think overall it worked well.
Last week I worked on a little music project, arranging and recording an electronic version of Henry Purcell’s great aria Dido’s Lament (technically it is named “When I am laid in Earth” but everyone knows it as “Dido’s Lament”) .
Quick back story – Henry Purcell was a 17th century English composer and is regarded as one of the greatest English composers of all times (until he 20th century, no other English born composer compared since Handle was not born in England). One of his most famous works was the opera Dido and Aeneas, based on the Aeneid.
After escaping the downfall of Troy, Aeneas ends up in Carthage. Dido, the queen of Carthage, falls in love. He would happily spend the rest of his life there, but destiny calls; he has to found Rome, you know. So he leaves, and Dido commits suicide.
The opera ends in three pieces: a recitative to introduce the aria, the aria itself, and then a choral part in all of its Baroque counterpoint glory. The recitative (Thy hand, Belinda) is often performed with the aria while the chorus isn’t, but to me the chorus caps it all off greatly… But that aria, called Dido’s Lament, is what most people know.
Have you ever taken a music appreciation class (talking Western Classical music here)? If so, you most likely have heard this before. It does a great job of demonstrating a few Baroque techniques, such as ground bass (that part you hear from beginning to end). It is also often called one of the saddest songs in Western Classical music.
I took two of the miniatures from my composition “Child’s Play” and rearranged them a little. Actually the biggest rearrangement is making the super simple starting piece, “Happy Feet”, a little more complex by having it modulate from the key of G to the key of D. When you hear it again at the end, that is how it is in “Child’s Play, Book 1”. Actually, that piece, “Happy Feet”, is based on one of the first things I ever wrote, back when I was a Freshman or Sophomore in college. I broke a few counterpoint rules at the time, which were fixed when I added it to “Child’s Play, Book 1”. Continue reading →
Last weekend I was just playing around, improvising on some electronics. I decided to make a quick recording. The big thing is that I was using two different echoes set at different times to create a rhythm. This created the backbone of the ditty. I then improvised over it. Not great, and very rough, but I like it… (hope to do a better recording later, but…)
Last week was a pretty good week. I felt well all week and things all seemed to go how they were supposed to. But was there something special for a weekly smile?
I seem to repeat that last paragraph all of the time. I feel like an echo. Hey, echo! That’s it.
(And since this is an echo, some may realize that I posted about this on Tuesday)
Last week I picked up a guitar pedal that’s a digital recreation of a tape echo. No I don’t play guitar, but I do play synthesizer. Real quick, an echo repeats sounds that were played into them. Tape echos were hugely popular in the late 60s, and the 70s, particularly with the prog rock crowd. You can read all about it here. Continue reading →