No Video Game

Two guitar and vocal tracks and one Cello – the mids boosted in EQ and the Cello with some very low frequencies trimmed. The vocals use a tube delay instead of reverb on one track. The Royer R10 and NT1A on vocals and SM57 and NT1A on the guitar amp and together at the crease of where the cone and paper meet on the left side.

This mix is good like yesterdays, even though the mics and Mic placement is different

Listen up
That's distant fire
This can't be real
It's getting dire

The clouds of smoke
And burning embers
People hiding
In their cellars

This is real
A Red Invasion
Ignored the warnings
Domination

Politicians
Playing games
Power junkies
Always the same

Media whores
Film the carnage
All for ratings
Common knowledge

These are people
Played as pawns
Lives at stake
From dusk till dawn

Chorus
This is real
No video game
The World's on fire
We've gone insane

in a nutshell

  • First 24/7 cable news, then the internet – has dehumanized war
  • I have two Ham Radio friends in the Ukraine
  • This is a real war, with real people and real lives

discussion

Just when you think maybe the pandemic is at its end and there could be a roaring 20’s, war breaks out. This will affect the world – Ukraine is very close to Europe. There will be all kinds of consequences and repercussions, but it seems these days everything is some virtual game. Combine this with Tucker Carlson like clowns and idiot Trump with his word diarrhea – praising Putin and you have the actual citizens of that country paying the ultimate price. This isn’t a video game!

theme

The dehumanization of war in the media (all media). American Morons supporting the arch enemy to get attention due to either fragile ratings, ego or both. Its sick.

conclusion

Its not easy to write a song like this, but I feel so bad for the common people in the Ukraine, and realize it can happen anywhere – yes, even in the USA. Goes to show corporate greed, politicians and white men with super inflated egos are at it again.

Magic Box

YOWZA! I finally am in control of my mixes. I even figured out why the Cello was so muddy as well as other recording and mixing problems. I hope to share these in another post soon.

I thought the mics used on the guitar cabinet were the SM57 and NT1A, but it was actually the SM57 and SE7 small diaphragm, with the low cut switch on and the mic pointed at the right side of the speaker. Happy accident – this is my best mix yet.

For those who hear
Imagination
Into the ether
Communication

For those who see
Imagination
Through the lens
Communication

For those who say
Imagination
Into the Mic
Communication

Chorus
A slight of hand
A magic box
The golden age
Opportunity knocks

in a nutshell

  • Most major modern inventions between 1822 – 1922
  • Camera, bicycle, radio, automobile, home electricity
  • Small simple boxes that seemed like magic

discussion

My father was born February 12, 1922, so I thought it would be cool to Google the Modern Invention Timeline. Sure enough, I would argue the most important modern day inventions all happened in the 100 years before my father was born. I’m also reading a fascinating book on Photography that has both the cultural as well as technical aspects of photography.

theme

My favorite inventions are the Camera, Bicycle, Radio and Microphone. It took many other inventions leading up to each of these, but all these years later, these inventions still are extremely important. Fun fact – the first mechanical computer was invented the  same year as the camera – 1822. Today, the Smart Phone has a camera, radio, microphone and computer built in!

conclusion

I’m still blown away by inventors and what they invent. The human imagination is such a gift and wonder. It is magic!

Ten Tin Heads

Ten Tin Heads hide
In shadows they lurk
They come out at night
That's when they work

They steal metal shovels
They steal metal rakes
If it's not bolted down
Then that's what they take

Their lust and greed
Smelted down from tin
Their pointy metal heads
Their creepy little grins

They say that they are DJs
They say they play the hits
Then smack you real hard
On the places that you sit

They won't play my songs
They won't play my rhymes
They lack common sense
And commit many crimes

When they're not lurking
At night in the dark
I'll play my music
And climb up the charts

Chorus
Tin Heads
Steel eyes
At the mic
At radio KRY

in a nutshell

  • The KRY theme just won’t quit
  • I found out some doll heads used to be made out of tin
  • Its always fun writing about pure nonsense

discussion

Guitar, Cello, Piano, Solina and vocals. I started working on my mixing. I think I need to work on this one some more. I record everything in stereo using an SE Electronics SE7 small diaphragm Mic and a VR2 Active Ribbon mic. I need to look at each stereo track and maybe pick one of the two. I seem to have some phasing issues – and low noise rumble – especially on the Cello.

I also need to re-record the vocals. Its funny how you need to sing a bunch of times to flesh out the vocal melody – its quite different than playing a melody on one instrument. You need to fit your voice and it’s inflection and accents accordingly.

theme

Pure nonsense, fantasy, dada

conclusion

My daily dose of fun. I’ve been playing open chords on the guitar and changing one note in the chord to see what progressions I can come up with. Laying down a rough mix, then listening and re-recording (at least the vocals) seems to be a good workflow.

Ringing Strings

In only 10 Cello lessons, my fabulous niece has me to the point where I feel comfortable enough, and confident enough to plow ahead with the Cello and where I am 100% confident that I can add simple but decent parts to my songs. Today we switch gears and I have my first Violin lesson ever. I did add a little Violin part to this song – just as a warm up for my first lesson. I can tell you that learning the Cello really helps with the Violin.

Best in Show

I had written lyrics – but then I found this cool Buchla Easel synth patch and just started riffing – do there’s little room left to sing. I’m also starting to concentrate on creating better mixes – I’m going to use my cell phone as the ultimate terrible sounding device – meaning – if it sounds at least clear with good levels in each track – then it should sound better on better systems. Thenn I try it on my Kindle – which has cheapy Panasonic ear buds that are actually quite great for $7.. I’m reading a great book on mixing – so fingers crossed that I can create better sounding MP3 files. Todays remix:

Don’t KRY4ME

My songs aren't played
On Radio KRY
It feels just like
A poke in the eye

Didn't quit my day job
Do you understand why?
I can't get no airplay
On Radio KRY

I sang about a girl
Whose a sty in my eye
They won't play it
On Radio KRY

Wrote that bouncy song
The station denied
They won't play it
On Radio KRY

Wrote three songs
For that radio station
KRY won't play
They said "No Obligation"

I packed my guitar
I'm wondering why
They won't play my songs
On Radio KRY

Chorus
All the hits
All the time
My songs rejected
On Radio KRY

in a nutshell

  • Less is more when it comes to mixing
  • The KRY radio theme keeps on giving
  • Just learning a few new guitar chords opens up new song ideas
  • I’m just starting to enjoy singing

discussion

Wow, less is so much more when mixing and creating an MP3.

theme

KRY – the theme that lives on past what I had expected

conclusion

Less is more, more or less

Outbound Train

The third that I have re-mixed to reduce the number of effects:

in a nutshell

  • A mini Roaring 20’s is upon us
  • Short attention spans mean moving on
  • It’s time for good news!
  • Leaving 6 – 7 years of pain

discussion

I can’t unlink the pandemic from Trump – he is also a terrible disease. People are simultaneously sick of both diseases. I have new hope that the tide is about to turn in a big way. Americans are very fickle. In this context, it’s a good thing.

I think the end of the pandemic starts a mini Roaring 20’s and (short attention span humans) will move on to better things. We endured Trump, Climate Change Disasters, Social Unrest and a Pandemic. At least some things have to get better.

theme

The last 6 – 7 years, the light at the end of the tunnel was the Trump Train entering the tunnel. Now that train is leaving us – and we can see beyond that darkness.

conclusion

The pandemic is Karma in that regard – it not only prevented Bozo from an easy win, more importantly – and no matter what happens politically – his business is pure burnt toast. No more loans, no more insurance and his brand died completely on January 6th. His handling of the pandemic was criminal. . The whole story will be fascinating a very un flattering way in the history books. He and his minions will be viewed like The Gang That Couldn’t Shoot Straight. Sadly, some more competent and imminently dangerous buffoon will emerge, but we will at least have a few more “quiet” years to enjoy.

Out of the darkness
Into the light
Its time to say
Goodbye to blight

Its time for peace and light
We've all paid our dues
Lock him up, shut him down
Its time for some good news

The other blight, disease
We've all paid many dues
Shut it down, let it drown
Its time for some good news

Chorus
The blight that plagued
Us for so many days
Disease and strife
An outbound train

2020 in 2022

I also re-mixed the song and got rid of way too many effects:

And the original”

in a nutshell

  • Yesterdays dirge gave way to more optimism today
  • Maybe the end of the pandemic will lighten people up
  • I’m starting to get the hang of writing for a singer

discussion

While I’m almost always super optimistic, some of the crap that has happened in the US over the last 6 or 7 years – with a pandemic thrown in the fire, means the stress level of people all over the globe has been high. Maybe, just maybe we could have even a little Roaring 20’s about to start. That is what we all need. People at the gym today were so happy not to have to wear a mask. Restaurants are packed. There is something good brewing!

theme

A train coming out of a long dark tunnel. Maybe tomorrow I’ll use this metaphor

conclusion

Crafting a song is part art and part sourcery. I never stay pessimistic for long – luckily there is karma and constant change. Its never all bad or all good all of the time.

You can feel it in the air
The unbearable lightness of being
Post pandemic fervor
That's what I'm seeing

We've all had enough
Its time to go outside
Cafes, theatres and bars
The new roaring 20's time

I long to hear live music
I long to travel abroad
There's no time like the present
This we must applaud

Chorus
2020 vision
In 2022
I got my plan
How about you?

Post Pandemic Fervor

This will be the second in a trilogy reflecting on coming out of this 2 year pandemic and all it’s lunacy … Ill add music and (hopefully) vocals tomorrow. Stay tuned.

You can feel it in the air
The unbearable lightness of being
Post pandemic fervor
That's what I'm seeing

We've all had enough
Time to go outside
Cafes, theatres and bars
The new roaring 20's time

I long to hear live music
I long to travel abroad
There's no time like the present
This we must applaud

Metawurst

I’m working on making better mixes. Here is what I believe will be a cleaner mix than the original:

Player Guitar

in a nutshell

  • Lyrics sung or even spoken are very much worth the effort
  • It takes twice as much time to “fit” lyrics to music and sing
  • You have to feel what you sing. Deadpan is OK as a too
  • Socio political songs are tricky. Keep them short and to the point
  • Instrumentals add spice, and should be used sparingly
  • Sad songs based on empathy and or pathos work well
  • Too many effects makes for a bad mix – muddies it up

discussion

I did change the song in several ways – to accommodate my “talk singing”. Its very interesting how music changes when you write for a singer (or a sprechgesanger like me). My friend and ex-bandmate Jeff warned me when I got back into music two years ago “A song is not a song unless it has lyrics and a singer”. Dick Dale would have disagreed, but I will say I finally agree with him today. I did not agree for the longest time.

I think an occasional instrumental is refreshing and needed for sure – but the main thing I learned with this exercise is that I had to work twice a long to “finish” the song – tighten it up – make the lyrics and music mesh just right, etc.

Now – this song is a sad-ish song – with a message of hope. I started thinking that we are just about out of this Covid era, and that maybe, just maybe, some of the lunacy that the US went through will fade away as people get downright giddy getting their lives back. People have very short attention spans.

theme

Some of the tech companies put profit over our Democracy (two in particular) by giving the biggest phony “Profit Prophet” a social media platform that he used to dupe the 25 – 35% dumb fucks in America to basically go out of their mind. Luckily, Karma finally has arrived – Meta is tanking and The Profit Prophet clowns accounting firm has opened the Pandora’s box that will be this jerks downfall – and its way more of a downfall than anything political. Stay tuned – when the loans come due soon, and we start hearing about insurance fraud ….. But sadly, because of this jerk and the GOP, so many politicized their own survival and they paid the ultimate price.

conclusion

I’m hoping that a lot of the lunacy was pandemic related. I am sure that if people can lighten up a bit – we could be on the steps of another “Roaring 20’s”. Today, we dropped the mask mandates here, and leading up to this day – the restaurants have been packed like the “good old / pre pandemic” days. Fingers crossed – and my next song will be a continuation of this “coming out of the darkness” trilogy I’m writing. Todays song is the darkest and most introspective.

Crazy times,social decay
Virtual reality, MetaWurst play
Money Prophets, distant people
Virtual things, void of feeling

Inhuman humans, monster cyborgs
Selling dreams, in online stores
Religion/Politics one in the same
The highest ratings wins the game

Social media, so anti social
US versus US, it's really woeful
I'd rather see sausage being made
Than hide behind a Virtual Vail

Chorus
The more that we go virtual
The less human we are
We can save our souls
We can heal our scars