Tuesday, July 1, 2014

My Name is Romance


Today, I'd like to offer you another musical piece in my evolving "Forgotten Voices" series, like my earlier Streak of Moonlight, which I shared back in April.  This is one I call My Name is Romance.  I've uploaded it to My Soundcloud Page and I eagerly invite you to take a listen either from using the link above, or right from this blog by clicking on the embedded widget below:





Like Streak of Moonlight, everything on this piece was performed by me.  I edited the MIDI Drum patterns and played bass, keys (including the keyboard melody), and many, many guitars.  The only things that were not me are the samples from a 1930's radio romance program -- vocals and some short clips of strings.

This took a long time to put together and went through several revisions.  I also changed my opinions as the piece was slowly put together -- I started out really liking it, then thought it was crap and set it aside half-finished, and then revisited it and thought it wasn't so bad.  Now I have come full circle to liking it once again. Nothing like the temperamental artist, huh? ;)

Now that it's finished, I enjoy the mix of moody, distortion-laden rhythm guitars, spacey echo fills, the keyboard melody, and the leads (including a backwards one that turned out much better than I thought it might).  All-together, including each vocal sample, there are over 30 separate audio tracks in this piece, many of them just little fills that come and go in the background.  This is not my usual recording method -- I'm typically much too impatient to let something sit and stew and keep slowing adding and revising over a long period.

Take a listen and see what you think!  And then feel free to let me know -- I'd love to hear your opinion.

Thanks for listening!


25 comments:

  1. Chris, that is awesome! Dig the riffs. Definitely has a science fiction vibe to it.

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    1. Thank you Alex! I'm very glad you liked it!

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  2. Nice work. I love the radio samples and the guitars are great, too.

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    1. Thank you very much! I really appreciate that!

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    2. I recently introduced our daughter to "The Shadow." Her recent interest in podcasts as inspired her to create her own. I thought some old radio dramas would help fuel her fire. They certainly did for you!

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    3. Thanks! And that's very cool -- I'm glad your daughter enjoyed those old radio shows. They have a certain charm that sometimes seems missing in modern visual media. I also find it interesting to listen to these old things that were done long before I was around. It kinda offers a faint glimmer of hope that maybe my own stuff will live on well past me in some small way. :)

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  3. I loved, loved, loved it! Really. You've got some kinda talent, dude.

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    1. Aw shucks, Susan -- you're too kind. But I am very glad that you liked it!

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  4. I'm a sucker for distortion guitar. Always. There's something so epic about it--something words could never communicate.

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    1. I'm very happy you enjoyed it Crystal. Thank you very much!

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  5. Pretty cool, CHRIS! (I even put my 'No Control' album on pause long enough to listen all the way through your track. You'll understand the reference to 'No Control' if you see my reply to you in the comment section of 'BOTB #23'.)

    To be perfectly honest, I wasn't crazy about the vocal snippets in this piece, But I LOVED the fantabulously moody guitar work throughout, as well as the rest of the instrumental tracks.

    I think if the ONLY vocal snippet we heard was "My name is Romance" several times, but without the additional spoken portions, I would have liked it better. But this was definitely a very cool sound. Good work, Brother!

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

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    1. Thanks, Stephen -- I'm glad you liked it and I really appreciate your feedback. And I would probably say my guitar playing is was closer to the "No Control" guitars than anything like EVH, lol! Interesting thought about limiting the vocal snippets... I put them in because I feel the music needs vocals (which my pathetic singing can't do much in the way of providing). I like the way they can take on new meanings when heard completely out of context. But It's not anything I can take credit for creating -- David Byrne and Brian Eno's "My Life in the Bush of Ghosts" from like '79 or '80 was my first exposure to the concept...

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  6. Really cool! I especially love the background beat througout.

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    1. thank you Nicki! I'm very happy you enjoyed it!

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  7. I rather liked the vocal snippets. They set the tone for what comes after. In some ways they feel like bridges or transitional places. I am in awe of your guitar playing. I think this is a gem of a creative piece.

    Here is the comment I left for you on my blog, but I wasn't sure you'd come back to see it:
    You do have two 5s in your blueprint. 5 is the traveler, big idea person, often sales people (on the positive side of their number). 5 is the number to fulfill your soul and also your attitude number. You also have two 3s and that is the creative number. One is your personality number (how others perceive you) and the other your birth day number (another number on appearance to the outside world). The most important number in your name is the 8 which is your power name number and reveals a great deal about your character. 8 is usually associated with finances. If you are living on the positive side, things are clicking along great. If on the negative side, money slips through your fingers. Additonally, 8s tend to be strong, opinionated, and have very specific thoughts on what is wrong in any given circumstance (not a wishy washy number). They are also dependable and direct, but must be careful with their words. Their directness can hurt feelings (even if it is NOT their intent). I don't have your most important number, The Life Path Number, because I need your birth year to get it.

    I just spouted all of that off of the top of my head. Looking at the book, it says the 5 soul number wants to enjoy life fully and come and go as they please. Desire for knowledge. Keen imagination. Wonderful sense of creativity. Enjoy using the facts you discover. Variety is the spice of your life. Likes to get where you're going quickly (sometimes you drive too fast). This author suggests the need for speed and 5s tend to like racing cars or boats. You are actually a 23/5 and the author of this book says that the 2 shows your emotional side and sensitivity (deeply touched by kindness and easily upset by hurts) and the 3 shows a need for verbal communication and ways to express your creativity. The book says a 5 attitude is high energy, excited about life, looks for new and different things in life. Appreciative when someone goes out of their way for them. Loves life (be careful of overindulgence - booze, drugs, sex... the usual suspects). 5 Attitudes devour information and are always seeking more.

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    1. Wow, Robin -- that's a lot of info! Well, first off -- thank you so much for your very kind words about my music. I really appreciate them!

      Next -- about the numerology: Interesting stuff! Like I said in my comment on your blog, I've always found it interesting that I have 5 letters in my first name, five in my last, and that my birth date (11/3) adds up to five (1+1+3).

      But truthfully, I don't know how much meaning I can give to it. Not that I think numerology is entirely bunk, but I do find it -- like astrology -- a bit too vague and limiting. I mean, to try and group all the people in the world into one of only ten types simply because that's all the digits there are? It leads to descriptions like you give, where every "5" can show multiple aspects of the same "trait".

      I think the problem is that people look at it from an entirely arbitrary attachment to the base 10 in our numbering system. Just because we have ten fingers and toes does not really give any more significance to the number 10 as a mathematical base than any other. We could easily write "ten" as "10" (base 10), "A" (base 16), "1010" (base 2), "13" (base 7), or any of an infinite number of bases if we chose.

      I think in order to truly capture the unique and specific "traits" of each individual, we need a much larger base in order to create enough unique "digits". I would think that a constant found in nature would be logical, since we're talking about the nature of humans. How about using the Avagadro constant as a numerical base for writing digits? That's around 6.022 x 10 to the 23rd power.

      This seems like an astronomical number, but it's related to mole units of matter, and as such, roughly describes how many atoms there are in 12 grams of Carbon-12. That's really a very, very small amount considering how much carbon there is in our bodies, on our planet, and in the universe as a whole..

      But with a base of 6.022 x 10 to the 23rd power, I believe there would be just enough unique digits to be able to precisely describe the traits of each and every human individual. Current population estimates are just under 8 billion (8 x 10 to the 9th power), and given the increasing, exponential rate of population growth, I would think that the number of "humans" who have ever lived on Earth should be less than twice that.

      At any rate, it's far, far less than our Avagadro constant -- we should have plenty of "digits" in our numbering system to be able to create a numerology to fully and completely describe each and every human since the beginning of humans and for the next million years or more. We just have to come up with symbols to use for each digit, and then be able to come up with a way to ascribe traits to each of the 6.022 x 10 to the 23rd individuals.

      Who's up for that? :)

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    2. Here is the deal. I am going to copy this directly from Shirley Lawrence's book on numerology.

      Yes, there is a real science behind numerology. It is based on physics, the science of the laws governing motion, matter, and energy. In physics, we learn that everything that exists has motion in the realm of vibratory frequency. Everything that exists in the universe from an inert rock and minerals to the organs of your body and the very sound of your name, all have their own distinct rate of vibration. To measure vibration, we need NUMBERS. Numbers are the key to all mysteries because they unlock the vibrational content of any and all things. In a nutshell, the secret science behind numerology is that it is based on physics.

      Letters are symbolic for sound.
      Each sound has a set rate of vibration that can be measured.
      Each letter's numbered place in the alphabet IS its rate of vibration.

      This didn't just happen by chance. The very first alphabet was designed by the greatest scientific and spiritual minds of the day. What Mrs. Dow Balliet discovered in the 20th century, that the LETTER NAME OF A MUSICAL NOTE AND ITS SOUND HAVE THE SAME VIBRATION, is a major secret used by the developers of the alphabet.

      Only rabbis had use for the alphabet, for in ancient times only the spiritual leaders were educated and taught to read. The spoken language was Aramaic. So the alphabet was used just for their sacred writings. The letters were also numbers and were placed in order of their rates of vibration, making it a "magical" alphabet.

      In comparing the alphabets, we find that the actual sounds of the Indo-European letters, which stem from Hebrew, are in amazingly the same order as the original alphabets, thus rendering our words as potent as those in the original alphabet when it comes to numerology.

      **She says that she explains this in greater detail in another book: The Secret Science of Numerology.

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    3. Hi again, Robin. You know, I certainly didn't intend for this to get into a debate on the scientific merits of numerology, and I apologize if my reply above, which I intended as lighthearted, came across as confrontational, argumentative, or harsh. I always welcome your input and perspective, and greatly appreciate you as a visitor to my blog.

      While I might not see eye-to-eye with Ms. Lawrence, I will agree that there is definitely a certain power in math and numbers, for they are potent tools to help us understand the amazingly complex and awe-inspiring universe around us.

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  8. FABULOUS!! i love the combination of old and new, the deeper meaning in the rhythm, the seductive pace with jolts of excitement! glad i stopped by today!

    (was coming over to thank you for commenting on my broken branch falls blog tour =)

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    1. Thank you very much, Tara! I'm glad you stopped by, too! :)

      (and I hope your blog tour was a rousing success!)

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  9. Hey, Chris. I am recruiting people for a blog hop, and because the hop is focusing on artists in general (not just fiction writers) I thought of you because you blog about your music as well as your writing. I couldn't find your email, but if you contact me at dksalerni@gmail.com I'll tell you more.

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  10. woooww ..
    romance??
    haha
    You asked for comments and follow my blog
    http://putyourheartshere.blogspot.com/2014/07/jessica-simpson-weds-eric-johnson-so.html

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    1. Thank you for stopping by and commenting on my blog, Andiri. I appreciate it!

      And "romance" is a subjective term -- there are some who find distorted guitars a bit romantic, lol. :)

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  11. Hey Chris.
    This uploaded on the 1st? I should have been here way sooner than now! Already mentioned to you that I was listening to it and enjoyed it. I like your sampling selections and placement. Keep it up, bro

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Don't be shy -- feel free to comment. I really appreciate your thoughts.