Sunday, February 28, 2016

A Thing A Week - 2016 - Week 8 | Piano Improv - The Start of Something New

This week's thing reveals a glimpse into my creative process.

To give some background, in past weeks with improv I've often been sitting at the piano playing around long before I hit record. I'm usually just playing around without intention of recording when I come across something that I like, I mess around with it for a bit, and then think to myself, "Hey! I should record this!" While the videos I've released that I've called "improv" are definitely still improvised, they are somewhat more refined and I started recording when I already had some ideas in my head and fingers.

This week is something quite different! This week, I decided I would set up my camera, hit record, and then sit down as a blank slate. This is typically how I approach composition. I improvise for an extended amount of time. I decide what I liked about it. I work out those ideas further. Then I record the ideas (with pencil and paper if I have time and am looking for a zen experience or with an iPhone if I'm in a hurry).

Starting today, I'm working on writing a piece of music for trumpet and piano for my wife, Kate DeVoe, and myself to play at a New Ruckus new music event on April 12th at Studio Z in St. Paul. So this week, you get to see "The Start of Something New." I plan to expand this out a few minutes longer and obviously add a trumpet line as well. Watch for an update on the progress sometime in March.

...oh wow! Just realized March is only two days away. Just about time to get the piano tuned :-D


See you next week!


Sunday, February 21, 2016

A Thing A Week - 2016 - Week 7 | Ambient Electric Guitar Improv

This weeks thing is a little ambient electric guitar improv. Playing around in pandiatonic e minor; based on whatever sounds I hear in my head.

Pedals used:
MXR Phase 90
Boss RV-3 Digital Reverb/Delay
Boss DD-20 Giga Delay
Boss OC-3 Super Octave
Boss PH-3 Phase Shifter
Boss BF-3 Flanger
Boss TR-2 Tremolo
Boss RC-20XL Loop Station

Also on the board are a Boss BD-2 Blues Driver, a Way Huge Electronics Swollen Pickel MKII Fuzz, and a Dunlop Cry Baby Wah. But they didn't make an appearance this time around.

I recorded this using an Acoustic G100FX amp and a Shure SM57, using an Allen&Heath QU-16 for the interface and Pro Tools 11 for my DAW.

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See ya next week!

Sunday, February 14, 2016

A Thing A Week - 2016 - Week 6 | Valentine's Day Piano Improv

Love, what a wonderful thing. This weeks 'thing' is a little piano improv. Like love can sometimes be, it starts out small like a whisper and grows into something powerful and moving.

Stay tuned for ATAW - Week 7.

Until then; wishing you a wonderful day filled with love,


P.S. Please excuse the slightly out of tune piano. I've noticed certain pitches bending more and more as the winter rages on. Can't wait for spring to settle in so I can justify getting it tuned to a more humid climate :)

Sunday, February 7, 2016

A Thing A Week - 2016 - Week 5 | Winterflight

Working with limitations: I had a super busy week filled with client work and follow-up from last week's game jam. I also did some traveling this week.

Since I was traveling and didn't have my studio with me, I decided that a good limitation for this week's 'thing' would be to create something solely with my iPhone and laptop. I used the iPhone camera to shoot the video, Garage Band to compose the music, and then assembled the video using Adobe Premiere on my laptop.

It was a fun little experiment, but I am excited to be back in my studio with all my tools at hand to create ATAW - Week 6.

Until then,