Am working on a new Chill tune called “Are you an evil mystik, mister?” It’s actually several years old. I wrote it shortly after moving to Toronto from Ottawa. Had just bought a new keyboard and was eager to get into digital recording. I knew even less back then than I do now, so just did a couple of takes using the keyboard’s auto-accompaniment mode. Those takes are okay but I’m now doing a new version entirely from scratch. It’s slow going but a lot of fun, and a great way to learn REAPER, the software I’m using.
Isn’t it a Pity (my cover, that is) is on hold, mostly because I lost interest and also because I don’t want to work my butt off and then find out that I can’t even post it on YouTube or SoundCloud due to copyright issues.
So… it’s back to my own stuff. I’ve got the audio equip. set up in the basement, which in Canada can get pretty chilly in the winter months. Electricity costs too much IMHO to justify using a space heater for hours on end, so I rigged up a temporary room divider, consisting of two shower curtains stapled together. This keeps a smaller area warm as the flow from the heating vent has less distance to travel and less colder air to mingle with.
Chill is cool but cold sucks…
Was up quite late last night working on my cover of George Harisson’s Isn’t it a Pity. So far so good. I’ve got a basic kickdrum and cymbal going, and an airy synth mapping out the chords. It’s probably taking a little longer than it would for most musicians because I don’t know the chord progression that well and keep messing it up if I try to play the whole thing through.
So I recorded each individual phrase and was pasting them together so they’d connect seamlessly. A real learning experience and a heck of a lot of fun… especially when you do it right, play it back, and it sounds like a guy sitting there playing the whole thing through.
This copy and paste technique should come in handy when I do the final arrangement. I can more easily change things around if the tune is already sectioned off into its different parts.
Another thing that came to mind last night was copyright law for cover songs. Millions of people do covers on YouTube but it didn’t even occur to me that I could be sued if I posted my cover there or on SoundCloud. So I did a search, trying to see who actually owns the George Harrison song. It looks like maybe Apple Records does, but I’m not sure yet. Will have to find out.
Although I really like this song, I don’t wanna lose my shirt over it!
Apparently the song was first penned in the mid 60s while George was a Beatle. The rest of the band put the kibosh on it, which one reviewer said was surprising because the Beatles usually spotted hits before anyone else. I guess it was just ahead of its time… too long and engaging for the mid 60s. And even in the late 60s, other tunes were chosen for Beatles lps instead of that one.
Turns out the song fit perfectly with Harrison’s All Things Must Pass (1970) record, which marked the end of the Beatles, and the end of an era.
- Isn’t it a Pity (mclark.wordpress.com)
- Vinyl Review: The Beatles, “Abbey Road” (Original Recording Remastered) (popdose.com)
- Wrong Abbey Road: Station draws lost Beatles fans (miamiherald.com)
- Pittsburgh Symphony Pops concert misses some notes in Beatles tribute (triblive.com)
- First ever Beatles record that original bandmate sold for £12k now the most valuable in the world at almost £1/4m (swns.com)
- The Long and Winding Road (littleboxofbooks.wordpress.com)
Interesting student video of Bowie’s Telling Lies. I don’t think Bowie did a video for this song. There’s another video at YouTube that’s a sort of remix of other Bowie footage, and *very* ugly as all lies and liars are. But this one isn’t quite so harsh. I like its ambiguity.
- Visual Proof that David Bowie and Tilda Swinton Are the Same Person (hintmag.com)
- Hallo Spaceboy (ladygarfunkel.wordpress.com)
- David Bowie ‘The Jean Genie’ 1973 (bestoftopofthepops.wordpress.com)
- Video: True Blood’s Joe Manganiello Talks Season Four, His David Bowie and Sookie Hopes (popsugar.com)
- The Red Hot Chili Peppers Cover Bowie, Neil and The Beach Boys on New EP (929dave.radio.com)
- David Bowie’s ‘Ziggy Stardust’ Gets 40th Anniversary Reissue (rollingstone.com)
- David Bowie’s “Ziggy Stardust” Turns 40 (news.radio.com)
Here’s another Christian pop tune that I stumbled across in my travels. I like the song and don’t really know if it needs a video. But this video seems the least intrusive of all the others I saw at Youtube.
One of things I like about music is how it can create its own visual landscape of the imagination. So if the video just gets in the way, you can always sit back, turn your head the other way, and listen.
When I was a kid the second bargain priced record I bought was The Best of the Guess Who, Vol. 2. It’s long since gone from my collection, but thank God for YouTube. Listening to this one brings back childhood memories of listening to vinyl records in my room in Toronto, sitting in the back seat of the station wagon (remember those?) on the way up to Collingwood for skiing, and racing around in motor boats at Georgian Bay.
Like the record, all that’s pretty much gone from my life now… well, everything but the listening to music part.
It’s true that this band had a string of AM hits in Canada (and some in the US) during the 70s, but I think we all knew they were good but not quite as good as, say, The Who.
- Bachman & Turner ‘Takin’ Care of Business’ in New Will Ferrell Film (spinner.com)
- The Joy of Public Broadcasting (pureandsimpleliving.wordpress.com)
- Burton Cummings and Don McLean at NYCB Theater at Westbury- An “American” Night (musiccourt.wordpress.com)
- Canada’s Best Music – 5 Songs At A Time – Part 11 (joebeans2002.wordpress.com)
- Digging for Gold: The Time-Life “AM Gold” Series, Part 30 (popdose.com)
- The First Chord of “A Hard Day’s Night” (929dave.radio.com)