Thursday, February 28, 2013

A Lost Original and Should've-been-lost Cover

Bisbee Blue (demo)
Your Love (cover)

How about another song or two?  That's rhetorical: you don't have any real choice in the matter, though neither are you required to download or listen. But, of course, you know that already.

I just did a little bit of recording to pick up my mood a bit. The first song is an original called Bisbee Blue. I'm not quite sure when I wrote it, other than "mid-90s". The song is named for the town of Bisbee, once one of the largest cities in Arizona but most recently something of a tourist/artist/old-timey attraction. Bisbee blue is know, I'm not sure what it is.  A color, of course, but I'm not sure if it was in local pottery or jewelry or what.   It's the local turquoise.  It's also the name of a song by Tucson band Calexico, though my song was written first. I'd forgotten about it for ages, and only rediscovered it a year or so ago. I may rerecord it for real for the next EP, but I figured I'd bang it out now and post it.

And since heaven forfend I just post one song, I added a goofy cover of Your Love by the Outfield. Their version is better, of course, but they had the advantage of knowing what they were doing. Even though I either botched the ending or didn't botch it because you can't botch what you don't know, I thought I'd post it, too. 

Both songs are just me and my guitar. For Bisbee Blue I recorded them on separate tracks in serial, for Your Love I just did it live (obviously). 

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Dear Kate Bush

Songs at the bottom!

First a bit of near/medium term planning: Thanks to all for the positive response to the "We Didn't Start The Science" video! This post doesn't have any geeky rewritten pop songs, so be warned. :)  I plan to do National Poetry Writing Month again on the blog in April, and also to get a few music posts in before then. In particular, I'm hoping to post the first part of my Ceres rock opera (which is technically not an opera, I think). I've also been toying with a longer-term project of writing Schoolhouse Rock-style planetary science songs. The initial reaction has been positive, but of course that's entirely been from friends on Twitter. :)

OK, today I'm posting two versions of a song that I've been working on for a while but will clearly never put on a "proper" EP or LP like the ones on Bandcamp. I'm not sure exactly what started me writing a song "about" Kate Bush, but I started nonetheless. I wanted it to be a complicated, way-overproduced thing vaguely reminiscent of "Hounds of Love" (in fact, it was a cover of Hounds of Love that helped spur me on).  But I never could sing it worth a damn. I posted an instrumental version of it here (in fact it was one of my very first posts) and thought I'd figure it out later.

And so I did! I realized I should have Meredith sing it and that would work better.  Unfortunately, all of the techno wizardry needed for the various parts (including the 100% auto-tune that I think helps lend...something to the song) mean that the vocals sound odd in an unintended way.  On top of that, the sample of "The Man With The Child In His Eyes" means that I'm reluctant to put it on Bandcamp.  So I'm putting it here (and below) instead.

The second version is just me and my guitar.  I originally recorded it for a friend, and for completeness am putting it up here (and below). It's much much simpler than the way I imagine it (which is more like the "regular" version), so I don't want to put that on Bandcamp either.  And if it's not going to be on a proper release, I might as well put it here. :)

Dear Kate Bush: Meredith vocals, full Gedankenband
Dear Kate Bush: Andy and guitar

Monday, February 4, 2013

Video: We Didn't Start The Science

I do a lot on Twitter.  I'm probably use it more than any other social media site.  My handle is @ asrivkin, though you're much more likely to find this blog via Twitter than find me on Twitter via this blog. 

Anyhow, as I was approaching my 10,000th tweet I thought I'd do something fun. My 5,000th tweet found me at a famous landmark, but timing wasn't working out to do something similar for 10,000. So instead you get a video!  I did the "special effects" with Photo Booth-- it would likely have come out better if I'd allocated more time to the process and some effort into getting some better lighting, but perhaps it fits the DIY nature of things better this way.

"We Didn't Start The Science" appears a few times on this blog and elsewhere.  I of course didn't write the music. Because it's a cover it's not eligible to be on my Bandcamp site, but that doesn't mean I won't point to it and recent releases there anyway. :)