New Recordings

So, skipping the style issue for the time being (I mean, it’s not too bad is it? At least its pretty minimal, mainly white and grey with a bit of red. The irony wanting to get rid of rounded corners and gradients…) Anyway, I thought I’d jump in to some actual *content*. I have some new songs I’ve recorded, in period of November – December 2006. I put up a page about it, but it’s a deep link, so you’d never know unless you had something like, well, this blog to point you there.

By way of background, I play saxophone, piano, synthesizers and other instruments, and have been in many bands and musical projects over the years, doing live performances and studio recordings. Over the last few years I’ve been mainly focused on writing and recording in my home studio. This effort culminated in the release of the CD Buzzy Tonic by the Brothers Zing in summer 2006. You can get it on iTunes, CDBaby, or directly from us via PayPal. Check it out.

Since then, I’ve begun work on a new set of tracks. It’s early in the process and the nature of the follow-up is still taking shape. Maybe it will be a solo project, or another collaboration with my brother, or it might involve other musicians. I’m developing new material but that takes a while. I’ve begun recording a new original called Heat Wave, so watch this space. Meanwhile I am working on a series of covers to investigate specific issues with the recording process. Maybe they’ll end up as bonus tracks or an EP someday.

The first of these is Martha My Dear, a Beatles song off the White Album. It’s a quirky Paul song, very studio-ish in style, with a brass and string orchestra accompanying basically a piano arrangement. I wanted to see if I could map the orchestra to sounds in my own sonic palette, and I re-interpreted it as a bit more electric and synth-y. I was also interested in capturing that “natural chorus” multitrack vocal sound that the Beatles used to such great effect.

As a companion, a B-side if you will, I did a version of Letter From Home by Pat Metheny. I picked this song for a few reasons. Like Martha it’s pretty short, about 2 and a half minutes, but that’s about there the similarity ends. It’s an jazz ballad, ethereal, yearning, and melancholy. I used to play a few Metheny tunes back in the day with Event Horizon, my jazz group, so this is also a bit of a nod to that. On a technical level, I wanted to see how proTools handled a tune that was completely rubato, and with meter changes, with it’s automatic beat tracking tools. It turned out to work OK, but a fair amount of manual assist was required. Now that I have the gist of it, the next one will go quicker.



Hello everyone and welcome to my site. Now that is ten years old, I thought it was time to do something a bit more “Web 2.0” while it’s still trendy. So I stared a blog.

By way of introduction, let me just mention that I am a software developer and designer, and also a musician and origami artist. The idea behind this blog is all about the creative process, and resulting works. I want to provide an entry point to pages that change elsewhere on my site, for example when I post something new, such as songs I’ve made or origami models, or interactive software, art work or whatever. Also I want to comment on the creative process of my work as it evolves, and hopefully get some interesting discussions going on. On top of that I will probably be some of the usual bloggish commentary on random things that I see on the street, or in the media, or that are a part of my life and times.

But first things first. As you might have noticed, the look of this page has nothing to do with the design of anything else on my site. So now that the blog engine is up and running, the next order of business is to make it look like it belongs on my site. I hope to do this in fairly short order, but then again…

Attentive readers might observer that I started this blog last November around Thanksgiving, and this really blog 2.0 for me. So here is what happened. I started the first blog using Blogger, and set it up to uploaded the blog into my website. I got as far as Hello World with that, and then had to confront the style question. Blogger provided a bunch of preset styles to choose from, none of which was satisfactory, and all of them overdetermined, like a room covered in ornate wallpaper when all you want is white and blank. My own aesthetic in these things generally runs toward minimalistic, which often has additional virtue of being simpler to implement. So I went ahead and started hand-editing my own style sheet. This is something I can do, but it’s a bit of a drag, so it took a few weeks to get there, and around Christmastime I was ready to debut my new blog. But then Blogger upgraded their software and I got locked out of my account; they seem to have lost my username and password. Oy!

So here I am starting over which WordPress, which has the great advantage of being completely self-contained on my server, without relying on some 3rd party. So that’s cool, and it’s off to a good start. Now back to the style question. Looks like there are some style editing tools available , so we’ll see how that goes…