Tag Archives: video

The Weekly Smile for the 16th of November, 2020 #weeklysmile

Hi! I hope you all had a good week. I had a good week. Yes, there were ups and downs, but mostly good, at least on a personal level.

One of the things I smiled about this week was a new synthesizer. I’ll mention the name, even though I know it is meaningless for 99.99% of you: A Sequential Prophet Rev 2. It is an analog polysynth. Got it?

No matter, it is great sounding instrument and I had a lot of fun playing it and creating new sounds. At one point I took out my phone and did a quick recording. The sound was in stereo, with the different parts swirling around (not capture with my phone!) and there was a deep, rich bass (also not captured with my phone) and it was so much fun to just play. Oh well, so my cheap phone couldn’t quite capture it, but I hope you smile hearing this attempt:

Continue reading

Yesterday (A Parody) -Music Video

mask

Last week I posted a parody of the Beatles’ song, Yesterday.  Well, I decided to make it into a video:

(Click here if you don’t see the video below)

Now do you see why I usually sing with a vocoder instead of with my natural voice? ;) And, yes, I was trying to look and act a bit silly in the video – it was not supposed to be serious at all!

I tweaked my original parody a little, but not much.  Here is what I sang: Continue reading

Country Dance – Music Video

Daffodils

Years ago I followed a music forum.  One thing we did was a “Composition Challenge“.  The winner of the last challenge would present a theme and people would create a composition based on that theme.  Most of the themes had been difficult and produced more “modern” music, but the winner of Challenge 13 put up a very simple phrase.

OK, I decided to play a bit of a joke.  I wrote a ground bass or passacaglia (think Pachelbel’s (misnamed) Canon in D minor) done with strings in 4-4 time, a Sousa style march done in brass and percussion – in “cut time” and a simple country dance (almost waltz) done with a small woodwind ensemble (I think flute, clarinet, english horn and bassoon) in 3-4 time.  I then had them all playing simultaneously but ending together on a huge C major chord. Continue reading

The Weekly Smile for the 9th of December, 2019 #weeklysmile

weeklysmile2a

It was an interesting week with some pretty good smiles, but I am going to back up a bit…. in a way.

I know many of you saw it, but I posted a video this week.  It is music I worked on in mid to late November.  I did mention it in a previous smile and said I would say more when it was finished and posted, so here it is: this week the smile is about posting it.

The video is The Coventry Carol. Very quick, so you can understand the video if you watch it, The Coventry Carol was part of a medieval mystery play is a lullaby to the doomed children of Bethlehem as the mothers wait for Herod’s men to murder all boys under 2 years old.  The music became a part of the holiday tradition during the Battle of Britain in WW2. It was played live on the BBC from the bombed out Coventry Cathedral on Christmas  day, 1940. Continue reading

The Coventry Carol – Video

Notre Dame

I have always like The Coventry Carol.  I’m into dark, medieval music, particularly Christmas music, which seems like it should be bright, not dark.  So I decided I wanted to record it.  But I needed a little research first.  I was surprised at what I found, and this led to the video (hint, read this before listening)

The carol was part of a “mystery play” that went back to the 14th century.  The words were written down in the early 16th century and the music in the late 16th century, some believe in a bid to try to get it performed again (it wasn’t).  This song is about the slaughter of the innocents.

Yes, The Coventry Carol is a lullaby sung by the women of Bethlehem to try to calm their frightened babies as they wait for Herod’s men to murder the babies. “Bye bye, lully lullay.” Nice, right? So “the little tiny child” in the song is not the baby Jesus, but some poor, doomed child.

The words and music survived as much by accident as anything, as such things do, and was revived again in the 20th century.During The Battle of Britain in WW2, the Germans bombed Coventry on the 14th of November, 1940.  On Christmas, 1940, the BBC played The Coventry Carol live as it was being sung from the bombed out ruins of the Coventry cathedral.

So the song went from the poor woman resigned to their fate when brought up against powers beyond their understanding to the women shaking their fists at the sky when brought up against these powers.  You may bomb us and kill our children, but we will rise from the ashes. Continue reading

Promo Video – Again

Fireborn-v-001

In the shadowy area where myth and history collide…

I have put up a series of posts about The Fireborn talking about some of the main ideas – the main character, Elliot; the Cauldron; the fireborn; and the sword.  You can get to them all at The Fireborn page.

So, after reading those pages, I want you to revisit my little promotional video.

(Click here if you don’t see the video)

Now that you know a little more about the book, does the video make more sense?

The Fireborn will be released on August 21.  Look for links to preorder the Kindle version soon!

 

 

House of The Rising Sun Part 2

Steamship Paddles

If you couldn’t tell from my first post about my video for The House for the Rising Sun, I was not happy with my voice.  OK, part of it was that I made an arrangement that pushed my range from the A below the staff to the A above the staff.  That’s three ‘A’s and two octaves. Also, I’m not a great singer to begin with so…

I decided to do a new version with a synth line instead of vocals.  I used the same background but I changed the mix slightly to bring down the arpeggios and bring up the organ.  I also added a little counter-melody part.

(Click here if you don’t see the video)

The video is still the same, just a change in the music.

OK, question time.  When I posted this, I noticed Sony records put a Copyright claim to the video.  As I said in my last post, this is a traditional song that has been performed for a century and recorded for almost a century.  The melody has its rots in the 17th century.  I spent several hours trying to hunt down the copyright and read a lot of interesting stuff about copyright.  Everything indicated that it is Public Domain. Continue reading

The Fireborn – Promo Video

Fireborn

In the shadowy area where myth and history collide….

My book The Fireborn is almost ready to be published.  I decided to do a little promotional video for it.  Don’t you ever do things like that?  So I wrote (and played) a little music.  I made some drawings and paintings (two water colors and a pastel).  Did a bit of simple animation.  And here it is!

(Click here if you don’t see the video)

As the publishing date gets closer, I’ll start to introduce characters and ideas, often using stills from the video I made.

Who said marketing can’t be creative? ;)

(Note – the drawing at the top of the page was not used in the video – perhaps it will be in the next one)

 

Challenge Thirteen

Osprey

One of the very first posts I ever put up on this blog was called Challenge Me!  It was about musical challenges that I used to participate in when I followed a music forum back about a decade ago.

Here is a super quick synopsis of that post.  Someone would post a phrase or a theme.  The “contestants” would compose music based on that theme.  The music could take any form, any genre, etc., as long as it used the music software that the music forum was about.  The winner of each challenge would post the theme for the next challenge.  You can read more on the original post. Continue reading