Not reliable. So you try your broken score again…but the glockenspiel is missing. And you then find that in reality, NOT all your sounds have downloaded. So you have to restart the process…again. And sometimes, again. Before you can even try to save your piece. Why is the glockenspiel missing? Twice, quite annoying. Thrice, very, very effing annoying.
And when you have to enter your details that fourth or fifth time…. When you are already, maybe, the most unhappy customer a vendor could really possibly have. Why would you put a good customer through that? Haste makes waste. It should be perfect in this clean environment. Not even close!!
Clearly, it cannot have been tested properly? I expect better from my vendors, and I am feeling mightily disappointed right now. To their credit, they are trying to make it right.
Yet…I love this product. It enabled me to re learn notation, which I did understand, but had never written. My first half a year with it, I wrote notation, and in that first full year, I learned that I could write classical music, I could write jazz, I could write alternative music…with notation, much was possible than was not possible in my pre-Notion pre-IPad days. The beauty of the IPad version, was that portability.
Work on your pieces anywhere, anytime, thru headphones, thru Bluetooth speaker…fantastic. Hear your changes instantly. Compose on the fly…truly brilliant. I am really missing that, and I hope I can go back to it, soon. I have not been idle during the unfolding of this great Notional drama. Some good things have been happening, too. Believe it or not. A new song in Gadget, which utilises the new Korg iM1, their beautiful emulation of the classic M1 synthesiser, heavily.
The previously tested mix, Version 5, was a minute or so shorter. So please, go and have a listen…always free to listen. In OK, yes, it is very, very simple, but, once you work with it for a while, at least, for me, I began to approach working with it more compositionally. Because they are so incredibly beautiful. These scapes are such unique, precious pieces of music, and to me, they are amazing in so many ways, because of the high, high quality of the samples, because of the brilliance of sample selection, because of the genius programming of the app — I could go on.
For a very, very intense several months, I experienced from one to several of these amazingly lovely songs almost every single day. And I was mesmerised. I really enjoyed making those videos, and I used the single screen shot of the art for each scape, as the starting point of each video.
Over the next several weeks and probably months, I will continue to upload as many of these as I can master, and if we are all lucky, I will actually make it to the end this time — maybe.
We shall see…. Carrying on with the discussion of the visual aspect, you would then be able to see, and hear, for example, in scapethat there is only ONE bass part, which plays occasionally, and the three melodic letter shape instruments carry this tune instead of the basses as in The combinations, and the possibilities, are actually, almost limitless, they really are.
I am sure that as long as you got it close, that it would end up sounding very, very similar to my version — very similar indeed, but not identical. Very close. A whole lotta nothing. But sometimes, small input means big output, in terms of beauty. A constantly ringing bell might actually remind one a bit too much of that early morning alarm, and when you have several of these admittedly, more melodic alarm clocks going off at once, it can be a bit overwhelming.
I think that is brilliant. The other requirement is that you listen…. I vote for mellotron, sitar, and anything else they fancy sampling…go for it.
I like that about a company, and I think that they are handling themselves well in both arenas — not something a lot of companies can probably boast about. I hope I will not change my mind about that again! I hope to master it and upload it as soon as possible….
The accidental intro worked beautifully, in fact, I ended up using it as one of my main themes, with various modifications, and it sounds as if it were planned into the song — when it Island X - Michael Bierylo Ensemble - Cloud Chorus (Vinyl was not — a complete and utter accident. In the next incarnation, now at 34 bars, a third theme was added, which included some lovely parts done with the electric piano v.
Master it, reverb it, etc. I am completely set up for making music on the ipad, the WHOLE process, so I could carry on, add EQ as necessary, work on stereo placement, add Island X - Michael Bierylo Ensemble - Cloud Chorus (Vinyl, etc. I guess I am more old-fashioned than I had realised…. The challenge will be to create a mastering process that is just as quick and easy as it is on the PC and, more importantly — just as good — and I think that now, inthat is actually possible.
There are some nice mastering tools available now, for the iPad, and I am sure with time, they will just get better and better. Too slow…PC is a million times faster, for every process. But — the gap is closing, slowly. If you are fortunate — music comes out.
Often — it did. That would be fun. Of course, I now also have ipad apps aplenty, including one game-changing ipad app for the guitar — the absolutely stunning FLUX:FX from Adrian Belewmobgen and elephant candy. And — they are very, very editable — each one has a deep edit screen, where you can edit and save your sounds endlessly — a lot of editing capability.
Re-processing that whole thing on the fly in Guitar Rig Proof course! And then — there is the keyboard section. Within Komplete, I have many, many choices of keyboard — every vintage organclavinet, harpsichord, fender Rhodesgrand piano, etc.
Then, once I am happy with the drum track, I would turn to the bass guitar — mostly likely using one of the remarkably high quality Scar-bee instruments, or possibly, playing the part on my bass — or maybe, doubling it up so that both are present — real and Komplete — that might be interesting!
Then, once I have bass and drums complete…then I start overdubbing guitars and ebow guitars and guitar synth and Kaoss Guitar. For days and days.
And with all the sonic possibilities, this should be a hugely fun and exciting process — what sound to use today? Finally — does it want percussion? More synth flourishes? Special effects courtesy of Komplete or the roland gr guitar synth? Live percussion?
At some point, I will have a song on my hands, and if I spend the time, and tweak the mix until you can hear every instrument well but at the same time, they are nicely blended for smooth, clear listening…then I will know that the first piece of my initiated album is nearly done, and I can start thinking about the SECOND piece for the album…something totally different, probably.
Why not? Insane idea…how could that ever be? I really wish I could go back, and show 15 year old Clapton- Hendrix- Gibbons- Steely Dan-loving rock guitarist Dave Stafford just what technology looks like — just to see the look on his face! I think I like their title better to be honest!! Of course, this does not mean that I will stop doing improvised sessions — I absolutely will continue with those. So I will be working with the Rhodes which I have actually, a number of different sample sets for as well as a number of other ancient and vintage instruments, including such rarities as the Ondes, and the Novachord, amazing early keyboards with extraordinary sound palettes both from the wonderful Soniccouture — makers of the most amazing software instruments in the universe — some of these early synthesizers were truly out of this world.
From the Conservatoire Collection, another Soniccouture act of genius, I have the beautiful beautiful baroque guitar, the amazing hurdy-gurdy, some lovely Flemish harpsichords, and some truly remarkable baroque timpani — which sound like no timpani I have ever heard — an astonishing sample set there.
Right there then, are a series of possible live improvs or duets, using a broad range of current, vintage or ancient sounds — what a range of sounds it is — and I am so fortunate as to be here to bear witness to it all. Addressing the video backlog — well, during — I finally had to just give up, in one sense, and I have started publishing videos that were recorded recently, in some cases, very recently, and I have back-burnered the older videos that should have gone up to maintain the chronology.
I decided in the end, that I can easily control chronology by providing you with dated sessions, so that you can view the sessions by date, so as I am able to backfill the older videos, that you can still experience the live videos in chronological order, while at the same time, we can start to feature what is really happening NOW in the studio — rather than videos that were made two years ago!
I want to put up those older videos — in some cases, they contain truly ground-breaking footage, and they do deserve a spot up there, but — time is of the essence. I promise! If I post a truncated session, where I have made videos for just three or four of nine or ten good takes, if there is enough of a public outcry, i.
I am definitely looking forward to a full of music from past, present and future — and hopefully, hit upon some new ideas, musical forms, formats and instrument combinations, that will enhance what we do here and bring some new and innovative joys of music to your ears.
REV by Output. I am very, very excited by the sonic possibilities that rev offers, I am still very much a new user, but I have indeed, set aside some time to work with rev, and I was not in any way disappointed. I actually agree with their marketing information, which states that this is not the sound of a few guitars going backwards, it has been designed from the ground up to be a playable instrument, with the option in every case, of using the reversed or the forward sample — it is left up to the user.
With basic patches available, the pad allows you to slice and dice and squash and decimate and rip apart your normal guitar sound in more than ways. Ibanez simply replaced the mini synth in the above set up, with an electric guitar!! But — definitely — guitar based songsand ambient dreaming music — will be here beginning in It is time. So the new year looks to be our most active and intense to date, but we are gonna give it our best shot. Meanwhile…have a safe and prosperous and happy, happy New Year — see you on the other side….
After a childhood dominated by the Beatles I only had four long-playing vinyl LPs — all by the Beatles! But we even took turns singing the verses, so we could do the overlapping vocal bit — very sophisticated. Then Mike announced that he was going to bring around this amazing pianist that he knew of, to see if he would join our band.
That was when I first met Ted Holdingwho later on, would become my very best and dearest personal friend, but at this point in time, Ted was quiet, unassuming, with his long, straight blond hair hanging in his face — but when he sat down at the piano — it was a different story. Ted on the piano — even at age 13! I watched, I imitated, I begged him to teach me songs — so really, my own keyboard ability came along in leaps and bounds directly as a result of working with Ted — may he rest in peace.
I brought along one of my new pals, who lived in my neighbourhood, around — our drummer who also sang — the very talented Brian Monaco. For a band whose four members age was all exactly 13, we were remarkably accomplished. To compensate for this, we went from a standard two guitars and drums to a really confusing three guitars and drums — but somehow, we made it work — Rick brought in a friend of his on third guitar, so we had one rhythm guitarist Rick and two lead guitarists myself and Tommy.
But — learning these songs — what a struggle it could be! I only wish the guitars were even close to the original — they are not! By the time I was 20 or 21, I had learned so much from the remarkable Ted Holding, that my piano playing skills were way beyond what they had been — which of course, opened up opportunity to learn Beatle songs on the piano, too — a whole new world of songs, LP).
So where did this go next? Time passed, school went on, friends, and fellow musicians, came and went — in fact, for example, I was in many, many different bands formed by the also-unstoppable bass player Mike Lewis — we remained friends, and he would pretty much bring me into every band he formed for a number of years whether I really wanted to be in that band or not, sometimes! Some of these, unfortunately to my ever-lasting shame, were Christian rock bands — a place that neither Ted nor myself belonged or felt comfortable in, but — we did it for our friend, Mike.
To be frank, he made Mike look pretty bad, and his piano playing was far, far beyond any of us — we were not as skilled on our chosen instruments. The years after Junior High school are more of a blur, for my 14 th year on the planet, I would have been moving on from those earliest bands into more sophisticated bands, and while I still worked with Mike Lewis on his many projects, I began to work more directly with Ted Holding, who happened to also love the music of the Beatles.
It really was. So we laid down basic instrumental tracks, Ted on piano, myself playing nylon string classical guitar my first acoustic guitar purchase — a beautiful little guitar that I still have to this day and we worked very hard to get it sounding just right.
Then — we overdubbed vocals. I hope one day to go through the reel to reel tapes which Ted gave to me many years ago, because I wanted to preserve this music and present this piece — but it is on a long list of analogue-to-digital conversions that need to be done, and I do not have a reel to reel deck set up at the moment. Hopefully, one day, I will find out.
I remember struggling mightily with it, but luckily, Ted saved the day, LP) worked out the exact notes, figured out where and when to bend the strings — and eventually, I got it — I was so pleased!
Joe also sold me one of my best guitars, my Ibanez destroyer, which I still play to this day. How could a band of self-taught teddy boy long-haired art-school drop-outs from Liverpool, end up in Abbey Road Studio No. In my opinion, one of the biggest and most significant catalysts was none other than the good Sir George Martin — who had the most influence over the Beatlesand encouraged them, even from the earliest days, to try new things. And try them, they did.
Acoustic songs, folk-rock songs, volume-knob lead guitar. Favourite recordsfull stop! The most normal of all the tracks on the record. It was down to a shared love of the Beatlesand to be honest, almost every musician I ever worked with in the 70s, loved the music of the Beatles. George and John begin to experiment with truly distorted and detuned sounds after seeing Jimi Hendrix perform — and you can hear it on tracks such as the reprise version of the title track — the lead guitars are really powerful.
A complete change. Stark white cover. Songs that became more and more sophisticated, and for musicians such as myself, became more and more difficult to play, or imitate — but it was sure fun to try! Joe Norwood- guit. So while Cream and Zeppelin and Hendrix really, really rocked, they never quite had the songwriting skill and stamina that Lennon, McCartney, or Harrison did and that may be why I found myself drawn to progressive rock fairly early on — seeking better songcraft — and often finding it — although some of the late Cream and later Zeppelin, are pretty musically advanced.
But those are the successors, the BeatlesI think, wisely disbanding before the heavy metal bombast of Stadium Rock took over the world — by then, they were gone…. As it turns out, Klaatu are just some guys from Canada, who made Beatlesque music I really enjoy Klaatu, especially their first three albums.
So somebody needs to do some counting, and really find out a what the top ten most covered songs of all time REALLY are, by all artists, and b what the top ten most covered Beatles songs are — what song is REALLY, currently in the top spot — make up your minds!!
For those who might be interested, there is a very interesting page here on Wikipedia, that lists many of the most significant cover versions of Beatles songs. I am utterly in my element here, I hope the synths never stop arriving, and as long as developers keep creating them, I will absolutely, absolutely — keep playing them. I will leave guitar applications for another day — suffice to say, they are equally diverse and fascinating, and several of them are putting serious challenges to existing stomp box and other guitar processing hardware items.
I feel truly blessed to live in such times, technology at work for good, for the sake of sound, and LP) sound quality of most of these apps far exceeds expectations. Korg Gadget. Without consulting the help, I managed to load up some synths, create a scene, record a drum track, a bass track, and synth tracks — and then, went back and manually edited them in piano roll view the default view until I was happy with the track.
Without the manual or any help at all — I created a fairly complex track. But the synths…. And the studio itself is very sharp, really nice graphics, extremely good controls on the synths. One hour with it was all I needed to convince me. I had concerns about the tuning of my guitar; concerns about the ambient guitar parts I was playing; and concerns about the solos I played. I just know that for me, I can often be very, very overcritical at first, especially at the time of recording, just after, and probably for a few weeks afterwards — but interestingly, as I found, after a few months, when you listen with fresh earsyou may well find that you were too critical, and you have perfectly viable music sitting there just waiting for that final mix and master.
I love this song; I am absolutely determined to capture a good quality version, completely live, at the piano, and, I have done a lot of work, both in learning the piano part much better than I ever knew it before, and in recording the track over and over and over and over again, slowly getting better at it in the process.
I kept avoiding it, until eventually I had to face it — and much to my surprise, that good take I was looking for — was there…with very, very little wrong with it. I think as musicians, we do sometimes do strange things with regards to the music we create, we are in denial about certain things, we hope that certain takes ARE takes when we know deep down, that they are NOT, conversely, as described in this blog, we thing takes are bad when they are really OK…and so on.
I do try now, to give myself a buffer zone of time, a week or two, preferably more — and THEN go back and listen…and invariably, things sound better once they been around for a few weeks — strange but true. I was surprised and still am, if truth be told at both the quantity and the quality of the music, I remember being satisfied with it at the time, but I had forgotten exactly what was there…musical buried treasure.
I recorded quickly, take after take, refining the themes as I went along. I had never recorded using just the ebow ensemble voice no piano and it just sounded amazing to my ears — a remarkable experience. I can remember feeling so excited about these pieces, and I burned all of the tracks which were quite substantial to disc and mailed them away to John for his comments…which came back very positive, he seemed happy with the material, and I was looking forward to hearing his sketches.
I tend to pour emotion into the music I write; the chords, melodies and harmonies I choose minor motifs are common reflect this, but in this case, it was if these pieces were already present inside me, in the memory of my hands and mind, and the act of sitting down at the keyboard released them into the world. We were of a similar disposition, we enjoyed similar music, and we found as the conversation went on, that we had much in common.
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