Tuesday, September 21, 2010

underneath my skin

after posting and listening to comfortable skin for a few days i've got a few thoughts. first off, i've obviously waited way too long to post a new blog with a song on it because it seems that my small following has wandered off to other realms. i hope to rope one or two of you back in soon because i am prepping for a whole new round of recording as i drift into fall quarter.

 about the song though...i've been getting a lot of advice that leads me to believe that i should probably stop screaming so much in my music. what can i say? i get into it once i get going. there's this well of emotion inside of me that only gets tapped when i'm in the zone, and once it's open it turns into a geyser. it's a snakeskin firehose and sometimes i lose control of its aim. but as i become more experienced and more aware of my output, i am becoming more apt at seeing the bigger picture and less prone to losing myself in the music.

it's kind of funny but i've never really considered the fact that i may be going astray by losing myself in the music when the whole point of creating art and music is to find oneself. and that's specifically what the theme of 'comfortable skin' is. self awareness and self respect. when ever i write a song i think of it as a sort of parable, though with 'skin' i've definitely taken a turn away from the esoteric tendencies that i lean towards in most of my tunes to date.

part of the wonder of this recording for me personally is that i didn't find it necessary to use any effects on the vocals that i recorded. other than a slight envelope filter applied to two or three specific words that i blew too hard on, what you hear is exactly what i recorded while standing in the corner of my bedroom where the acoustics of the room weren't too boomy or too tinny either. i'm proud to say that i truly am content with the quality of this recording even though i still know that i have room to improve.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Comfortable Skin

Hey hey hey,

So the good news is I have finally finished recording the vocals for Comfortable Skin, a song that I finished the instrumental tracks for at least two months ago.  I've moved my studio into our bedroom here, and after a computer crash I'm lucky to have backed up the instrumental tracks on my phone.  I think that losing my hard drive made me realize that I need to push through to the end and get my music out there sooner rather than later, though it's been hard to decide the mood of my vox on this song.  I've been going through a lot of changes in life and in my views on what is important as a man and a musician, and it's probably better that I waited to record this until now, but the lesson remains the same.  Carpe Diem.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Viscious Cyclone [a.free.write]

Leaving behind the bigotry of our beloved fathers without losing that essential humanity that they seeded into our humble and patient mothers who had hatreds of their own pumping through blood vessels and into breast milk that sustained our innocence that we so readily exchanged for the moldy rye and bitter bourbons that soften the blows we will receive in our adolescence as we watch our elders die the slow and cruel death of age and its ravages on their solidarity of mind and body and of course we prefer to assume soul.  And that soul we like to imagine as an angel more because we fear our own destiny than from any sense of pity or sorrow at the loss of loved ones though that's not without merit in our mourning that is quickly back-burnered by our own successes and advances as we march heartily toward the our own five o'clock shadows, shaking the sweaty nervous palms of our offspring as they watch our parents die in horror and they weep while we stoically avoid the truth that is held in the passing over of suns and moons that we worship and idolize and build monuments to in hopes that they'll choose another as their sacrifice leaving us one more day to live.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

naked kinky

What better on a Sunny Sunday afternoon than a song about self masochism?

Still have to record it but here's the gist. Think iggy pop.

naked kinky

smell of lemons on the fish
peelin' off a hangnail into cold soup
alphabet spelling out doom for me
smell of carrots on my plate
twisting off a toenail into the rug
it's bleeding, it's bleeding
it's bleeding all over me

one man marching to the sound of one man marching
in my head while I'm bleeding all over the rug

taste of iron on my tongue
gentle breeze rustling the leaves
blows the curtain off the rod
naked kinky and alone
hanging from the ceiling by a thread
it's bleeding, it's bleeding
it's bleeding all over me

caveaux noir and quickened breathe, groping for my soul
in my window bleeding all over the rug

naked kinky and alone, hanging by a thread
in my window trying to get my feet on the rug
in my head while I'm bleeding all over the rug
pail and flailing attempting to cut you a rug

one man marching to the sound of one man marching...

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Sometimes in the morning

sometimes in the morning
when I’m getting dressed
I find the jeans I feel like wearing
dirty and rumpled on the floor.

sometimes I wear them anyways.
sometimes I choose a different pair,
but I feel awkward in them,
like I’m wearing someone else’s face
around my thighs.

Done Been Singin'

I've always wanted to write a song that tells a story encompassing the journey through the major arcana of the Tarot, and I've finally done it (I think I have, anyways). I haven't gotten this song recorded yet, and I'm still working on the structure of the accompaniment for it but lyrically it is sound at this point. If you feel like being interactive, try to find all of the different parts of the story that link to the traits of the major arcana. There are 26 in all, though most of them may be a little too subtle for you to find without knowing explicit details of my life and without you having been there for some readings I've been given.

Also, I'm not a mystic, at least not in the traditional sense of the word. I don't believe that the Tarot is a method for deciphering the future. What I do believe is that the journey through the major arcana is a very good metaphor for the turbulence and chaos that we experience in our lives. The story told there has a reflection of the universal life experience held within it, and I respect that. That said, here it is:


done been singin’

[verse]
like a fool I left my home
I left my mother all alone
cause I was tired of the same old scene
I packed my duffel bag and hailed a cab
said hey cabbie can you take my to the depot
he replied sure son with a grunt
that’ll be twelve bucks up front

I snapped back I’m not your son
but that’ll be just fine
I’ll give you thirteen
if you get me there double time
bali bali adashi

[bridge]
and just like that
I was on the road
would you look at that
readin’ on the road
and I’m sing’n
yes I’m sing’n…

[chorus]
when you go to die I won’t be there
cause I’ve gone to live
and where I’ve gone to live
there’s no looking back
so when you go to die
I hope you can forgive me cause I
I’ve only got so much time to live

[verse]
next thing I remember I’m on a Bergen pier
and to my right a trumpet gives a shout
so I take my cue and enter the gate
it was February in Haakon shall
and the stately dinner was great and all
but I’d had my share of cognac with Kings
surf slapping the seawall
while I rolled up a loosey
and tried to look dramatic to the passers by
when on my shoulder landed an albatross
he said hey there soldier I see ya lookin’ down
but you won’t find the sky
you’re lookin’ for on the ground
and I learned that from a crow
so you know it’s true
and one more thing before I take to my wings
you’ll never get anywhere
worried about everything
so why don’t you just relax

[refrain]
B C#
oooo….




[verse]
couple years later I’m taking a walk
with nothing but a cliff bar in my pack
along with the tattered memory of a notebook
pen in my pocket is running dry
then from the sky an inkblot in my eye
drops across a paper trail

[bridge]
and suddenly I feel
I’m only chasin’ my tail
like a rabid dog
howlin’ like a rabid dog
at the moon
like a rabid dog

[chorus]
where I’ve gone to live you won’t be there
cause I’m on my own
and where I’ve gone to roam
there’s no looking back
so when you go to die
I hope you can forgive me cause I
I’ve only got so much time to live

[bridge]
won’t you help me, Grady
I need a change of oil
cause I’m getting ready
to sew some southern soil
and we’ll be sing’n
while we toil…

[chorus/outtro]

Friday, July 9, 2010

Langston Hughes, anyone?

I recently completed a creative writing course at South Seattle Community College.  As one of our assignments, we were to recite a poem from memory.  In the packet of poems we were given I came across a Langston Hughes poem entitle "Genius Child" and something about the poem spoke to me in such a way that I felt compelled to put it to music.

Here is the scratch track I laid down a couple days after I performed it in class:



Genius Child

This is the song
of the genius child
sing it softly
for the song is wild

Sing it softly
ever as you can
lest the song get out of hand

No-body loves the genius child


Can you love an eagle
tame or wild?

Wild or tame
can you love a monster
of a frightening name?

No-body loves the genius child


Kill Him!
Lest his soul
run wild

as an afterthought to the fourth of july


God bless America, dudes.  And you know why?  Because when America was formed as a Nation, the world needed an America.  Once the world had an America, it could never be the same.  By 'the world' I mean humanity, of course.  What did we have before America?  A bunch of feudal lords squabbling over property rights?  Yeah, that was awesome for the free thinking majority. 

But before you get out your confederate flags and start talking about ammurrica, though, I want you tho think about something.  It's not '
America' that the world needed.  It's an America.  The outcasts and lumpen-proletariat needed a place to stand on their own two feet for long enough to show the royal families that their bloodlines weren't so unique and spectacular after all.  Humanity needed an America so that it could evolve away from the selective imbreeding that was sure to eventually be its ruin.  The human race needed some breathing room.

Where are we now?  Just a couple hundred years later, we inheritants of the land of milk and honey have the gall to instate laws that make it possible for us to once again freely judge a man by the color of his skin.  A half a century has passed since the civil rights movements that we look back on so nostalgically, and just because our President is kind of black we think we're open minded now?  I say that until our open-mindedness becomes systemic - until we are truly willing to let every man and woman wear their skin comfortably - we will continue to suffer as a species and in particular, as a country. 

With the help of an
America, Europe was able to right itself.  Europeans left Europe in the first place because there weren't enough opportunities in their home towns and countries for them to thrive in.  They were persecuted for their beliefs, and they were sick and tired of living in a place where they had to worship haughty monarchs and bishops that spoke of piety through lips of luxury.  To the descendants of those people, I say this: Your kings are dead and the Holocaust is over; go back home, or stop bitching about the constant influx of people from the rest of the world. 

Europe had it's turn.  Now it's Africa's turn to become a good place to live and raise your kids.  Now it's Asia's turn.  Now it's South America's turn.  Let these people come here freely.  It will do us all a lot of good in the long run.  We've spent too much of our time and energy - not to mention money - on patriotism and anti-communist sentiments while at the same time shunning those people from other parts of the world that share our views when they try to emigrate here to share our vistas.  Whatever happened to open arms? 

Now that you and your family has had your turn at this freedom thing, it's time to understand that there are many families in the world who haven't gotten that chance.  Instead of telling people they need to go back to the
Middle East, or Africa, or Asia out of pure intolerance and selfish desire, consider this:  They are here because they didn't fit in where they're from.  They lived in a place that is chalk full of ancient regimes and strict cultures with swift corporeal and capital punishments and they wanted out.  They wanted to live in a place where they can freely give their own way of thinking and living a chance.  They wanted to be like you, and instead of being repelled and disgusted at this, you should feel even more proud of your country.  Instead of playing the part of America's jealously monogamous boyfriend, try being its Dionysian priestess.  Love the fact that others love your country.  Love the fact that they would rather live here with you than blow you up. 

Think of
America as a p-patch rather than a production farm and I think you'll see things the way I do.  It's a community garden.  The more exotic fruits and vivid vegetable in this garden, the better.  After a while, even sweet corn on the cob gets old and eventually one is forced to realize that white bread has no flavor. 

In closing, I have this simple request to make of you.  While the joys of blowing shit up and barbecues are still fresh in your mind, remember why America is here in the first place.  Oh, and stop being assholes to all the people who need it.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

A diary of random thoughts

There's so much that I see in this world
that seems like a patchwork quilt
that was built to cover
the raw reality that we live in.

I can't stand the way it hides
how beautiful it can be to be raw.
Raw like skin that's freshly shaved and washed
Raw like random droplets of liquid rock
going the way of hardened ancestors
Raw like fields of grass allowed to grow;
like organic life in its fully natural environment.
Like us in our fully natural environment.

But then, what is our fully natural environment?
What kind of structures would we have
if we only used products and materials
that lasted as long as we do?
or as long as we need them to?

Could we synthesize chemical separation
and dispersal that is modeled directly after
nature's example?

Is it crazy for this to be what I think about?

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Creative Writing

I'm in a creative writing class right now.  I write poems in the class.  Here are some of mine so far.


Color #7F00FF

is violet in a mood?
violet has a way
and violet is a way
violet is away on vacation
but violet always comes home
does violet even know
that violet is only a color?

violet tries to be blue sometimes
sometimes orange, but it is fruitless for violet
fruitless for violet? no.
violet shines on masculinity
but beneath the fa├žade, violet femmes

if they only knew what violet knows
that swampy green would envy violet
red would blush in shame at violet’s tongue
rays of yellow would try to stain violet
but violet is stubborn and hard to get out
indigo parades as violet from time to time
but only violet is what it is
and only violet knows what mood
violet is in.

violet would never presume
to step in for
black.

pity for god

No one’s from Seattle anymore
disagree with me if you will
as long as you will
look me in the eye:
look me in my crooked
leather eye.
Talk to me in person
and when you’re with me
could you just be with me
or is that a little too
difficult for you?
Are you
like a god –
incapable of changing your ways?
You sure act like it:
like you think you are.
Why try to hide it now?
Just go with it now.
We all know
where you’re from
anyway.

You’re my Seattle
and I’m not just saying
whatever anymore,
hoping I’ll get your attention
hoping you’ll want my words
like I want your stare:
like I want your crooked
iron stare.
hoping the music will move you
hoping I’m spilling out some
social imperative
hoping it’s never been spilled like
this before
hoping Apophis never causes
the oceans to spill:
hoping there is no tsunami
bigger than all my hoping:
none to wash me far
away from the sound:
of evergreen trees snapping out
the rhythm of Ray Charles…

…and yet here I am
digressing and drenched in hopes –
and hoping:
hoping this isn’t another case
of being less important
than a god that is incapable of
changing his mind.
God?  Are you incapable
of changing your mind?
God? GOD? God?
Are you?
How are you?

Home, for now

The front lawn
a graveyard
for refrigerators and
conventional ovens,
speaks to its lack
of conventional curb appeal.

The large yellow moving van
in the driveway has a smiley face
painted on its side wall that
tries to fool the passers by
into thinking that all is well
but I think they’ve got an idea.

Inside, the smell of spores
in hibernation for the winter
and an odd odor from dewy piles of
unchecked clutter accentuate
the chill that feathers your spine
while the nape of your neck realizes that

someone has died here.

The mirror on the far wall mocks us
as we trade melodic thoughts
and contemplate the small statue of Buddha
under the tilted chandelier
that has in its web  a
wayward plastic coat hanger.

The smoke of our breath commingles
with that of the fireplace,
our only source of heat and light
and the only thing that’s stirring until suddenly
some hellish spirit hurls a glass vase
against the wall mere inches from my face.

The back yard is silent but for the din of Aurora
with her pushers and walkers out In
full battle rattle making their statements
and staking their claims and vampires.
When the ground thaws out in a few months,
I’ll dig your fire pit right over there

and we’ll finally relax.


Yup.  So there that is.  I swear I'll post some music soon.  I'm working on it...

Saturday, March 27, 2010

do you ever get the feeling?

do you ever get the feeling that you've accomplished nothing after a full days work? doesn't that suck.

I was just looking at the clock and it's four nineteen pm.  I woke this morning with a little bit of a we-forgot-to-turn-off-the-heater-before-bed-again hangover and the fact that we're out of coffee hasn't helped any.  at least i had one last little cure in a baggie to partake in, so the headache has mostly subsided.

What I've been up to all day since waking up is trying to recreate my scratch tracks for comfortable skin.  I decided that I would turn it into a video since I haven't posted one of these in a while, and I wanted to do something a little different than my last few posts.

I think after I post this I am going to go and get some coffee and check out the georgetown music store again.  that place is becoming a home a away from home lately.




when i was seventeen i could already tell
leaving town was heavan and sticking around was hell
i had to wear my camoflauge but i
never liked it when they called me sergeant

cause that ain't the kind of skin that i'm comfortable in
this is my skin to get comfortable in

oh, then i got fired from an office job
cause i wasn't gonna slob on nobody's knob
i wouldn't wear their oily ties
cause that ain't the way i like getting by

this is my skin to get comfortable in
so find your own skin to get comfortable in

next thing you know i'm living in a van
and a tramp making music is all that i am
and i think to myself hey man this is more like it
i'm getting closer to getting in

to the kind of skin that i'm comfortable in
only got one skin to get comfortable in

through all the highs and all the lows
there's been so many times i
couldn't change my clothes
but i wouldn't have it any other way
this is the life i chose

well i guess that brings us about to the stage where
i'm really starting to feel my age, and
i've had my share scrapes and such
yeah i've played my share of double dutch
to get

in to the skin that i'm comfortable in
this is my skin to get comfortable in only
got one skin to get comfortable in

through all the highs
and all the lows
i've played my share of dives and i've
taken my share of blows
but i know i got to get on
cause ain't no use keeping dead crops up in rows
life is sometimes just the way life goes

mmm---
m-m-m---
mmm---
(humming and stuff)

this is my skin to get comfortable in
got one skin to get comfortable in

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Double Dribble

Hey all,

I just want to let everybody know that even though class is over, I am going to continue on with this.  And by everybody I mean you.  Thanks for sticking around, eh?  I mean, really, with all of the different information and entertainment you could be consuming right now I'm pretty stoked that you made it to this, the day of my daughter's...wait I'm thinking of something else.  You're the best.

Since you're here, you might as well share in my misery.  I was working on recording some tracks for Comfortable Skin on Tuesday afternoon and I was almost done with my "test run," which I made with the intent of posting, and audacity crashed when I had only one track left to put down on it.  The worst part?  Though I thought I had saved my changes as I went, I had apparently done nothing of the sort.  What a doosh, right?

You think after having had that happen to me so many times I would have learned by now.  One of the biggest problems with Audacity is it's inability to auto-save, and another is its tendency to crash when you have made too many changes without saving.  Sometimes trying to apply a certain effect such as fade in/fade out to an area that has already been altered in some other way.  I'm very happy with its ability to give you real-time playback so that you can record accurately because of that way that it is designed to be very lightweight on the memory drain for running it...it's a very compact engine.  If Audacity were a car, it would be a Geo Metro.  I should know, I drive one.

So I guess the lesson of the day is to know your enemy.  In my case the enemy is the fact that I can't just make the music come out of my mind the way it happens in there without me going through the motions of creating it with my imperfect limbs on instruments and electronic devices that are imperfect by design.  Wouldn't it be great if there were a device that you could hook up to the head of a musician that would make the sounds inside of the folds of their mind erupt?

Monday, March 22, 2010

ROOOOOAAAAAARRRRR!!!!

I just want to take a moment to thank everyone who came down to TRx on Sunday afternoon to support Something Lovelies and our surprise guests Sonic Mustard and double thanks to all of those who through some money down to support Childhood Cancer Sucks, an organization that has been founded to fund research that is focused on finding a cure for Childhood Cancer.  I know when I looked down I saw multiple tens and twenties in there, so that was great!  F U Cancer, Thank you Nich, for having us down to your awesome shop in DTR because it was a great time.

The morning before the show I didn't feel nervous at all, which was kind of weird for me.  But then half way through the day I started to feel like everything was going to go wrong and like everything was going wrong already.  For example, running through my head was the thought that maybe I wasn't good enough at guitar to pull off some of the simple songs we were going to play;  Why did I have to get this cold and why wasn't it gone yet;  I don't even think anybody's going to be in to it while we're playing...on and on and on.   Thank god for Zach who gave me some sound advice, namely to can the frustration and throw it out the window.  It worked.  Even though I didn't pull off some of the guitar, even though my voice was a little bit off from the cold, and even though we had only played these songs together a handful of times, we had fun.  And so did everyone else.  Fun.  Isn't that what it is all about.

I leave you with the sound advice of a six year old girl on how to become a great musician.  "All you have to do is have fun, and it will sound better."  Rock on Millie.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Demo anyone?

This is the final mix of the demo that I'm burning off for booking and such.  Hope you like some of the finishing touches that I've put on everything, and I would love to hear your feedback on what you think it it all.

Grey Matters:



Hot Potatoe:



What Do You Know:



The Stranger:



The jacket cover:
something cover small.jpg

The CD Label:
something label.jpg

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

another potato for your sack

i couldn't stand it.  the vocals on all my mixes have been bad.  the tone of the instruments has been clashing like a titan and an iceberg.  i used a not so subtle tonal shift with the wah effect so that it would soften everything.  While much clarity has been lost, i think it's easier on the ears this way.


Monday, March 8, 2010

For better or for worse (or, let's play a little game)

I've got an idea. I'm going to post a new mix of hot potatoe and you comment me with a simple "better" or "worse" and a short explanation.

not that I'm trying to tell you what to do here, people, I just...ugh.

:)




the heat will get to you
but don't let it fall
when she waits at home for you
and she is hot for you to call

the least you could do is call

she goes out of her way
to make you happy,  yet
you find it inside of yourself to complain
and the one sure thing is that

you're gonna do your thing
so are you happy yet?

the heat just got to you
and you let her down
then you had to yell at her
cause she turned your excuse around

and you just let her walk right out the door
so what the hell are you standing
around here for?

when all others have long since signed off

in the next room there lies a woman of unprecedented charms and here i am letting my blessed dexterity waste away the new fashioned way at this plastic tray that is only warm from my touch and not from it's own heart and hearth within the way that she is.  and as i puff and puff with no one to pass to i feel content and yet somehow aversely inflamed with the thought that i could ever be comfortable with who i am now when i know inside that there is so much work left to do before the Sistine chapel of my corpus humanus is completed.

And that's what's been on my mind lately.

it's not that i assume you were wondering but that i might as well just say it because who cares if i do any more than if i don't is a valid question.  i've been sitting on ideas my whole life and i just want to see if they're worth anything to anyone cause most of them don't fit me anymore.  it's like giving away old clothes to goodwill so that someone else can find a use for them. or maybe it's more like putting up the stepping stones that i've used to get to where i am now on craigslist in the free section so that i don't have to carry them with me anymore.

And that's pretty much the reason i write.

m and i drove down to PDx today, her in her black geo metro and me in the white ford econoline 19' bus trailing behind.  for the first fifty miles i was feeling a little tense about the way he (and by he I mean the good ship USS Sir Moby Broke-Dick) steers, but once i got used to it (and may i mention that the drivers in tacoma and lakewood didn't help me out one bit) i relaxed some and enjoyed the smoothness of the road as it pulled the fish-eyed earth away only to reveal more earth, which i might add doesn't in fact come to an end but instead eerily continues to be in front of us come hell or high water as stories from the past have revealed.

And that is a digression from my day.  It was a good day.  I got a t shirt and she got some books.   Unfortunately we weren't around long enough to see some family that I am long overdue in seeing.

I hope this finds you well,

M. Chase

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

news flash

recording music is a science.  as long as you are willing to learn, you can figure it out.  at least i hope that is true or i'm totally screwed in the end.  but for now, i'd like to re-present to you, my second mix of "hot potatoe" as it stands today, and most likely this will be the mix i use for the "all get out (demo version)" cd that I am just one song from finishing.  In the end, I'm going to have six songs on it.  they will be (not necessarily in this order though) 1) grey matters 2) the stranger 3) comfortable skin 4) hot potatoe 5) what do you know 6) hey, man.

i've always really liked the way that hey, man turned out so mad props to kristie fike the baddest assed lady engineer i know.

anywho, here's the song.  i've got to get started on the aforementioned comfortable skin.  is it taboo to use the syllable "fore" so close to "skin?"  Or am I still thinking about that lady killer Jonah Falcon?

Damn you John Stewart!




the heat will get to you
but don't let it fall
when she waits at home for you
and she is hot for you to call

the least you could do is call

she goes out of her way
to make you happy,  yet
you find it inside of yourself to complain
and the one sure thing is that

you're gonna do your thing
so are you happy yet?

the heat just got to you
and you let her down
then you had to yell at her
cause she turned your excuse around

and you just let her walk right out the door
so what the hell are you standing
around here for?


***Update:::  I, Rather Quite, your diligent man-servant of the latest and greatest news about yours truly would like to announce that in a fortunate turn of events, I was done with work at 1:15pm today and then after finishing my mix of "hot potatoe" I got a call from South Seattle Community College to let me know that class had been cancelled for tonight.  So now here I am with the amazing opportunity to lay down some tracks for the final song on the demo.

now wa'im saaaynnng'!  shout out's to j-roc and the trailer park.  i wish i could watch trailer park boys seasons one and two for the first time all over again.  and if i could say anything to bubbles it would be, when i die, do you think they would let me be reincarnated as you?  i'd really like that.  

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Au Gratin (or, the curse of the love song)

"the thing about love songs" says m, "is that every body thinks theirs is good because it really happened to them."  I may be slightly misquoting, but I'm pretty sure the intent of her statement is intact.  i've noticed that I think my songs sound good to me sometimes just because they're true to me so i refuse to look the gift horse that i've given myself in the mouth.  then again, that may just be the masochistic devil on my shoulder that is trying to get me depressed enough to do some serious destruction in my life for his enjoyment.  what's a devil to do, eh?

anyways, this is the last track I'm doing of this new song for at least twenty four hours.  i would like to unveil (cue "the final countdown" and watch Gob so some amazing magic for a minute...ok now back to what i was saying) my new tune

and let me also say first, it's not really a love song, but more of a story about a love.

"Hot Potatoe"



the heat will get to you
but don't let it fall
when she waits at home for you
and she is hot for you to call

the least you could do is call

she goes out of her way
to make you happy,  yet
you find it inside of yourself to complain
and the one sure thing is that

you're gonna do your thing
so are you happy yet?

the heat just got to you
and you let her down
then you had to yell at her
cause she turned your excuse around

and you just let her walk right out the door
so what the hell are you standing
around here for?

---

Ok now for my comments, and you can post yours too.

1) I was disappointed to have to use Audacity's crappy noise removal tool on the vocals because of a loud hiss that was too much in the forefront to ignore.

2) After having laid down the instrumental tracks I decided that this song is too rigid in this format, and I want it to get a little more groovy when it's played live.

3) I mad a lot of progress vocally during the many takes I did for this song, but I think I've still got a long way to go before I reach my ideal self as a singer.

4) I wish the drum machine I am using didn't sound so fake sometimes, but I'm thankful for what I do have, and can't wait until I have a silent sound booth with a full backline in it to record at my leisure.  But for now, please bear with me.  I had to start somewhere, and what better place than here?  What better time than now?

5) I think anything else that I have to say is babble.  Talk amoungst yourself.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

the haps

It's been a week and a half since my last post.  I've thought of apologizing for that, but the point of that is moot.  I'm all about apologizing when I've done something wrong, but in this case I haven't blogged because I've been right.  Starting this project is exactly what I've needed to get things on the right track creatively.  Let me once again go over the progress that I've made since my first post.  So far, I've finished recording two songs, two video performances, and booked two live performances.

I could mention to you the fact that I've accomplished very little from one point of view and very much from another.  Compare the fact that I've only really finished two songs to what that actually entails.  Taking a closer look at the process reveals this to be no small feat.  I've written and arranged two separate works as a composer, then I have become both studio musician and sound engineer as I work my way through the performance and recording of the separate drum tracks, bass lines, acoustic guitar and electric guitar parts, lead and backup vocals, and then taken those performances and mixed them into cohesive representations of something that like a crazy person I have heard inside of my skull.  If I were to dive into the question of "where did all of these imaginings of songs comes from, and what does their origin imply?" we could be here all day.  Honestly though, that is just another digression.

As far as the recorded material itself, you can hear it on my blog (you're on it), my Facebook Fan Page, The ROCKiT Space Website, occasionally on The Westside Will Radio Show, Myspace and Myspace.  but I think the most amazing thing is the places in this physical world that this music has already gone and the happenings that are going on around it.  At the aforementioned ROCKiT Space, I've performed a few times at the weekly open mic there.  I've also gone to Shadowland Bar and Grill open mic, and now today I played my first formally booked performance at Alleycat Acres on Beacon Hill.

Before I go any further, let me talk about that for a minute.  It all started with this communications class that led me to create a blog in which I could write about music that led me to connect with a few classmates, one of which is running an urban farm that is just a stones throw from the arts space that I volunteer and open mic at.  Friday night last week, I was reading through the replies to my posts for assignments in class and one of the replies was from Sean and in it he asked if I would play some acoustic music for their Sunday workday lunch break.  I started off the morning with some coffee, a simple breakfast, and some vocal recording.  After throwing an outfit together, I bounced off to Beacon Hill in my little blue Metro, unloaded my guitar and walked up to the sunny crest that the Alley Cats were turning from a vacant lot into a full on production-focused urban farm.  The Alley Cats is the group of volunteers that have been meeting with Sean for about a month and who are now working on orienting the farm for maximum productivity.

As I entered the space, I was greeted by said Sean who was being interviewed by a reporter from the Seattle Times about this project that he started.  After we talked for a moment, I walked through the crowd of workers that were busy relocating the large pile of composted soil in the front of the yard to the uniformly oriented rows that had been dug out perpendicular to the street stretching across the 42' of depth that the lot contained.  It wasn't until a was a few feet from the shed at the back of the lot that I could see just how far the hill dropped off behind it as its weeds and tangled trees tumbled down to Lake Washington below, surrounded by land and with the silvery towers of Bellevue looming over its banks.  After taking in the vistas, I walked back over to the table next to which I had stashed my guitar where the crowd was gathering to eat their lunches.  While tuning up, I had some good conversation with a couple of the volunteers about where the project came from and where they want to go with it.  I also was offered did happily accept a very tasty vegan brownie.  And while each of the people I talked to seemed to have their own individual reasons for being there, the unified purpose seemed to be what was in the forefront of their thinking, that being the food that they were going to get to take part in creating.

Standing next to the large compost pile in a little patch of sun, I played some new and some very old tunes of mine, along with a nice cover of a cover song.  And though the crowd was talking and not all gathering around googly-eyed worshiping me for my gift of music, I could tell that they really appreciated me being there so that they could turn off the radio and hear something organic while they fed their growling tummies and cooled their perspiring brows.  Before I left I was able to work out some ideas about getting kids from ROCKiT Space and their families involved in an agricultural class of some sort.  Of course it's all ideas right now, and I won't have much hand in that, I feel lucky to be in a position where I can connect two different organizations that are doing what they can to make positive change in the same neighborhood in their own ways.

In other news, my next booked performance will be played with another musician and old friend at Tyrannosaurus Records in DTR on Sunday March 21st at 4pm.  There is no cover charge, but there will be a tip jar and a Childhood Cancer Sucks donation jar up on the counter during the show.  That reminds me, I've got to call Nich (the proprietor of  TRx) and let him know those demos and flyers I promised are going to be a couple days late.

And just so you know, I was going to post a song on here today, but after going back and listening to it, I really want to flesh it out a little more.  After this song, I have one left to record before I make the official booking demo that I will use throughout the summer to try and gain exposure here in the northwest and beyond.  Don't get me wrong, I'm going to continue to record music and document the progress of that here, but I will also be talking about where the music takes me and what I get wrapped up in as a result of it.

I hope that you will find these ventures to be entertaining at worst and informative at best!

Cheers,

M. Chase

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

sometimes life is just the way life goes

I made some more edits to the song grey matters and i hope you like them.  Also, I'd like your feedback.  Do you like being able to hear the different mixes or would you prefer if I just put up the first and final mixes to that you can hear that disparity?  Get at me.



Take Care,

M. Chase

Monday, February 15, 2010

editor in chief

i reserve the right to change any song at any time.  because why not?

Grey Matters Mix iii most excellently better mix.mp3



Email me if you want the mp3.  Just promise me you'll make a donation to Childhood Cancer Sucks, alright?

Talk atcha later.

M. Chase

Sunday, February 14, 2010

New keyboard!!!

Yay!!  No more copy and paste every time i want to use the letter "a".  no more avoiding words that have a "q" or a "z" in them and i can use as many exclamation points as i want!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Aren't you excited.

Later y'all,

M. Chase

Saturday, February 13, 2010

all get out

So I decided today that i would remix this song so that you have a decent representation of it.  Lyrics below for song "grey matters."




I'm an old man in a city
waiting for a trial
who stands to lose everything over
his lifestyle
instead of giving in, he has
chosen to fight
he won't let anyone choose for him
what's wrong and what's right

on the other side of that town
I'm a woman sleeping on the ground
all she ever owned was taken to
the impound
how could anyone justify
forcing her to fight
when she only wanted to choose
for herself
what's wrong and what's right

so what's wrong and what's right
what's day and what's night
can't we live our own lives
why must we fight?

when it came down to it
why they didn't give in
even when they knew they couldn't win
is because they made their own choice
of what's wrong and what's right
what's day and what's night
don't try to fight

an oldie in my book, but probably new to you.

I've got a little something for you to enjoy here that I wrote many years ago just after the led got out and left the levee in tatters and in the process devouring our own (and by that i do mean americans. the straight ones, gay ones, black ones white ones green ones right ones left ones independent american ones. don't judge that or people based on any of that if you want my advice.  if not, why are you reading?  that last part was meant to be rhetorical.  i'm a joker.) while we were entrenched in our gluttonous campaigns in the middle west. east? whatever...

I give you: katrina was her name:





Bright sunny day
seekin the shade
kicckin the sand
not makin any plans

twirlin in the distance
she's bathed in light
i can't aford to miss this
i need to make that woman my lady tonight

whirlwind affair
sand in my hair
can't hide nowhere
from her eye's cold ambitious stare

katrina was her name
she ruined everything
when she spread her wings it was a hurricane
(rinse and repeat)

should i see her again
would i be fooled by the breese
would i stay rooted in
like all them fallen trees

as time rolls on
from sunshine to shade
all i really want
is protection from dangerous maides


katrina was her name
she ruined everything
when she spread her wings it was a hurricane
(thrice)

she was a hurry hurry hurry hurricane
you'd better hurry 'fore she's back with a different
name.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

i missed the only call i wanted to get tonight over this

life inside a set of borrowed headphones definitely has its downsides.  So here's a song.  I slapped it together in a few short hours this evening, and it's nothing but scratch tracks for a real song.  That's why I'm posting it as is.  This is the primordial soup of a rock and roll song.





I'm an old man in a city
waiting for a trial
who stands to lose everything over
his lifestyle
instead of giving in, he has
chosen to fight
he won't let anyone choose for him
what's wrong and what's right

on the other side of that town
I'm a woman sleeping on the ground
all she ever owned was taken to
the impound
how could anyone justify
forcing her to fight
when she only wanted to choose
for herself
what's wrong and what's right

so what's wrong and what's right
what's day and what's night
can't we live our own lives
why must we fight?

when it came down to it
why they didn't give in
even when they knew they couldn't win
is because they made their own choice
of what's wrong and what's right
what's day and what's night
don't try to fight

**Update**

Originally I wrote this with hopes that I would be able to perform it live at Hemp Fest, and today on NPR they were talking about the marijuana market as a "grey market" rather than a "black market", because of medical marijuana and the legalities involved with that whole movement.  I just thought I would point that out because it further locks in the title of this song, "Grey Matters."

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Piso Flow

Much as I might want to give you a stereo recording on this, it shain't be so.  look, i've gotta get going here in a minute, but i wanted to share this with you all.  and just so you know how much i wanted you to see this, i have had to copy and pste every letter "a" in this little note because my "a" key isn't typing.


word,


M Chase Collum


"Piso Flow"  lyrics below:




Call them criminals
then call them up.


Gi've them guns to...
Kill the ones you...
Fear.


Then,
tell your proles that 
"Victory Is Near"
When it's no nearer than last year.


You pack your Goldman Parachute
while you sweep dead under rugs
with your million dollar boots
while you give the poor their hugs


and while the plaines are
Crashing Down
you 
float above in the 
highest of fashion
Oh, how many souls
are swept up in your flow?

Monday, February 8, 2010

i've learned two things

1) sometimes the workaround isn't worth the trouble.

For example,  when you have an old 8mm video camera that you haven't used in years, you shouldn't hinge a major part of a complex plan upon it.  Just get your ass to radio shack and shell out the 24 dollars for a 30 frame per second webcam.

2) It pays to say what you've got to say loud and proud.  All the ideas and tolerances need to be laid out flat on the table i e viewing surface.  Don't think money, think value.  I'm glad to say that after a couple open mics I'm ramping up for a for real show down in DTR at a place I've mentioned called Tyrannosaurus Records.  It'll be on a Saturday in March sometime in the afternoon around 2-4pm.  Bring your kids and your earplugs.

Also, I think it's time that I let you all know that Childhood Cancer Sucks.  The show that I'm doing in Renton will also be a fund raiser for a friends soon to be 501(c).  more to follow on that.  Also, Can't wait to give you guys some video cheesiness.  Just to let you know I like lame effects on videos.

I'm not apologizing for it, though.

))<>((

M. Chase

Saturday, February 6, 2010

hey, man

i spend a lot of my life being the lower case i version of myself.  I'm passively aggressive, and overly confrontational in all the wrong ways.  i'm a liar.  i cut corners sometimes.  I don't respect the opinions of those around me, and this is even true in my own home.  i'm rude when I drive a lot of the time.  I feel like what I'm doing is so important that I don't give other people the respect and space that they need to accomplish what it is that is important to them.  I feign interest in things I have no intention in supporting.

The list goes on.

And on.

and on

On with it, though.  If you don't eat your meat, you can't have any pudding.  How can you have any pudding if you don't eat your meat?

you gotta eat what is in front of you.  clean your plate and then worry about the dishes.

So let me clean my plate.  let me say something that can make this place better, kinder, gentler, more loving.

I want to be a real man, and not just a poser.  I'm not one to start a fight, but I'm not going to be one to pussy foot around the elephant in the room, either.  i can't allow myself to be the type of person that just let's everything be.  let it be, let it be, oh let it be.  Speaking words of wisdom, let it be.

but I can't.  I've got to agitate. aggravate.  elevate.  i'm a social dingle berry.  not quite climbing but holding on for dear life to the pubic hairs of success.  i'm flailing and gnashing at the other berries and i'm trying to be the highlander too much.  i could stand to learn a lot from Iceland, with their egalitarian mindset and community based thinking.

And my values are unachievably high.  Despite the worst of myself that I am, i am a great person.  I have worth and value.  feelings.  emotional and irrational thoughts.  cloudy days.

it's people like you who actually care enough about some one other than yourself to read a blog that has nothing to do with your life (though that's not exactly true in the end i hope you see the point i am illustrating by stating it) that have inspired the next song I will post on my blog.

this is an old one, and in fact it is the first recording of me playing an electric guitar in existence.  A good friend of mine, Kristy recorded this for the price of a pack of smokes to help me get some music out there and to get some experience as an engineer.  She's really good at what she does, and I've always loved this song and the recording of it.

I'll post the words below so you can read them as it plays.  I give you "hey, man" and dedicate it to you as well.




hey, man

so many people come and go
some like to move real fast and
some like to take it slow

with all circumstances
shuffling us around
i've gotta tell ya man
it's so good to hear that sound

and you'd look so cool
in a kaleidoscope
how i wish that i could
see ya that way right now

but it's good to see you
either way
it's good to know that
you are still around

video killed the blog-eo

ARRRGGGGHHHHHH!!!!!  I wanna go Haggar the Horrible on the people at Brilliant.com and Buy.com for sending a cheap imitation of the video cable that I need for my video camera.  If i had known that I would need an extra S-Video Cable to hook the interface to my Samsung 8mm Cassette Recorder, I would've just sprung the $40 on a decent web cam in the first place.  Besides, they sent my cable sans Ulead Software that is even listed on the label of the package as being included.  What a crock.

I'll have video soon, I plomise.

Soons,

M. Chase

Monday, February 1, 2010

feeming

I just wanted to post that I am FEEMING to record some music, though I'm so busy with school and work and etc commitments, it may be Saturday before I get the chance to do any work.  ARRRRGHGGHGHGHHHH@@@

Sunday, January 31, 2010

jalapeeee-no

...and i have to say it's been a good week.  Oh excuse me, hello.  Have you two met?'

Horizontal turning of the head.  Hmph.

  "Well allow me, [your name], this is Guy.  He's the lead singer of a band named The Bend and not having heard them live is why you still have trouble sleeping at night."

"Oh yeah, and you missed Gunn and the Damage Done earlier, too."

Sorry about that. It's just that you've caught me in the middle of what could be added to a literal hundred even if my first impulse is to tell you that there are a thousand things I'm doing right now.  I don't know how I even managed to squeeze in a birthday, but thanks to a couple of friends, we ended up going to Rock4Relief on Thursday night and it was amazing.  It's been a sinfully long time since my last live show (on or off stage) and it was stepping off the plane in the tropics after eighteen months of Antarctica.

There's been some conversation about my choice in album title.  It has caused me to do some deep thinking.  Though it hurts to say it, I think that though my message is clear and strong and positive in intent, it may be something that causes pain.  Whether or not intellectuals will wring me dry over "Arbeit Macht Frei" I really could care less.  But at the same time...I know that inside of every intellectual is a sensitive human being, and to that part of them I would yield.  So I may consider the advice.  I'm open to advice.

Add to that this weeks horoscope, courtesy of Rob Brezsny(chovich):
In the coming week, I predict that you will NOT experience disgusting fascinations, smiling-faced failures, sensationalized accounts of useless developments, or bizarre fantasies in the middle of the night.  You may, on the other hand, have encounters with uplifting disappointments, incendiary offers, mysterious declarations of interdependence, and uproars that provoke your awe and humility in healing ways.  In other words, Aquarius, it'll be an uncanny, perhaps controversial time for you-but always leading in the direction of greater freedom.


Pretty cool right?

I went to my first open mic night at RockIt space tonight and was really blown away by all that talent in the room.  There was this guy Kevin who was polished as a professional and it was only his second open mic night ever.  Then Jessi and Marti got up there and swayed us with there solid and beautiful harmonies.  In the midst of all that the dance instructor (from a class they have there just before they open up the stage to any and all who have an opinion) did a rap to some hand drumming.  Even I performed a couple of songs, and even though it was a little rough around the edges, it still felt natural.  It was my first live performance since May 20, 2009.  I was on the drums in with Zach on lead guitar, Walker on Bass, and Becky on rhythm guitar and lead vox in our band The Right Typewriters.  It was a great show that got a footnote in a review for her boyfriend's band who followed us with a killer show.  (Hurricane Lantern (s?) is the name of his band.)

For histories sake, the last show before that was April 15th, 2009 at The Comet with Zach on rhythm and vox, Tim on lead guitar, me on bass, and Matt as the skinner.  We were playing a Stooges vs. Misfits show and we were on the side of the Stooges.  We called ourselves Something Lovelies at the time.  I say that because our band names included Mr. Hand, Boot Blacks, and 1919.  We played Gimme Danger, I Wanna Be Your Dog, Seek and Destroy, and another one that escapes me.  That was a crazy high energy show, and we had fun.  Especially when the drummer who had let us use his hi hat decided that he had to go in the middle of our second song and ran on and quickly off stage to the befuddlement of Matt who suddenly realized that something was definitely missing.  I saw people in the crowd follow him out and I hope that they caught him.  But all I could do was laugh.  What the hell, right?

And before that I was playing a solo acoustic show a The Showbox Green Room on April 9th, 2009.  I guess I've tried on a lot of hats in the past but it's been a while since I've worn some of them.  When I walked into the door of the RockIt, I saw Jack sitting on the couch and a crowd of vibrant onlookers of all ages, some with juice and others with beer.  The smiles of a face recognizing a face that it has anticipated are shared and you feel like you're home.  And not just because this arts space was originally built as a residence, but more from the way that you can slip into the place where no one is standing and feel that they were saving that spot just for you.  From the beautiful accapella's of a Rastafarian healer to a lover singing of his lover and finally the raspy, end of the night attempts to roust the neighbors with a Beatles Sing Along, i felt like I was a part of something.  None of it was fake, either because i was part of something.  The closest thing I can equate it to is a youth group gathering without the religion.  And man it was fun, right?  If you weren't there, don't fret, there's a place for you to sit or stand next week, and every week following that from 7-10pm on Saturday Nights.



Did I mention that I've made a contact with an amazing person down in Renton recently?  There's a place you should look up called Tyrannosaurus Records. They've got a really cool thing going on down there, and they're not alone.  There's a great burgeoning community in what they lovingly refer to as DTR.  They have the more modern forms of media available (cd's) as well as the old Vinyl for those of you who are cursed with an audiophillic bone in your earlobes.  Live in-stores happen pretty often, and they have a recording studio on site.  I've never really had a great excuse to hang out in Renton, but with the discovery of this place I think that I need to reevaluate that as well.

Also, check out Shadowland Open Mic night in west seattle.  Tuesday nights.  That's it for now folks, but I'll get atcha soon.

Here's not looking at you,

M. Chase



PS~Cancer Sucks.  Remember that.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

the mix down

What's great about the music as it happens to sound when a recording is fresh and still smelling of afterbirth is that you can hear the reality of the moment that you were alive to put down all of your tracks.  All of the dynamics are completely organic, and in that way pure.  Unadulterated.

When I listen to a song, and I mean really listen to a song that someone's made, I want to hear at least one thing that wasn't supposed to happen.  That one little muffled pat of a foot tapping in the booth or a buzzed fret for good measure.  An illogical breathe is even enough to satisfy this odd desire of mine.  i guess that's why for a really long time in my life I listened to nothing but live music.  All of this indulgence was made possible by the people at Napster and Kazaa whom I do so sorely miss.

Wait, did this musician just say that he misses free downloads without consequences?  Yeah, dude.  I think that free access to your art is the best way to earn the trust and respect of any listening audience that may sprout up for you as an artist.  That's right, I'm talking to you.  I'm talking to myself, too.  And the best part about being on a blog now is that at anytime, I can talk about what I'm thinking about and share things that I wouldn't normally have a chance to share with everyone I know and don't know, and in turn all of you can talk with me about these things.  Then I can go check out the other blogs that I follow and see what my friends are thinking about.  Pretty cool, huh?  and none of this has any time constraint.  in five years, chances are someone can come back here and see what I was thinking about.  Who is controlling history now, biotch?

Mwahahahahahaaaahahahahhhahahaaahaaaa!!!!

We, the people do suggest that everyone in the world get in on the conversation.  and just like our world, the art and context of it all is ever changing.  We feel one way about it one day and then experience a bipolar reversal in our opinion the next.  More bass.  No, that was too much.  Louder drums. quiter drums.  g-verb. tremolo. 3 db. -12 db. normalize. compress.  act react preaction.

and all this just to issue a different mix of a song that's already on the blog a few entries down the way.  but that's the thing.  we don't just finish a song, put it to master and call it a day any more.  we live in a time of remixes and remasters and 3-d quadraphonic sound.

On this mix, I eq'ed out some of the scratchy highs on the vocals and boosted the volume and bass on the drum track in certain key places.  A little boost on the bass track volume so you can hear what's going on down there.  It sounds good through Sony Headphones anyways.



word,

M. Chase

Monday, January 25, 2010

It's not over till the skinny white boy sings

I have an indecision problem. And this problem is pervasive throughout my life as many of you who know me well know damn well. Miranda will ask me, "What are you making for dinner?" or "What do you want to do for your birthday (which is this thursday I might add)?" or Zach might ask me "Do you want to go to a show on Sunday?"

"I don't know."

And that's just the simple stuff. Of course there are far more relevant examples that I could make, but frankly, using them would make me look bad and stupid. Whether or not I am bad and stupid, I will leave up to you, my humble readers.

Now the reason I am even telling you this is that you are going to have to bear with me (or not, really) when it comes to naming my creative endeavors.  I am a frequent user of "working titles," and I like to write songs that could be holed up with all diversity of pigeons.  Double and triple meanings, agendas that are hidden from the agendas:  This is just how I am.  And who I am, I might add.

So, I know that I had posted a song and labeled it as "Well" a couple days ago, but that was a mistake.  I actually meant to call it "The Stranger" in homage to both my psychopathy and my favorite rag.  The Stranger is a local free weekly in Seattle, and it is the newspaper who's classifieds led me to a dingy, sweat encumbered and soon to be condemned little building in the stadium district known as "Hush Studios," the place that I actually became a musician by virtue of the fact that I was creating and performing music in real life and outside of my barracks.  I will submit that I had been a producer and *chuckle chuckle* rapper (that's right, I said rapper (http://www.myspace.com/eequalsmcsee if you don't believe me)) up until that point, but I never thought I would actually end up doing that forever.  I learned a lot from it, but it wasn't my ends.

So there it is folks, change order #1.  And I may end up changing it again.  You know, to keep you on your toes and such.  The Stranger.

Out,
M. Chase

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Video

Alright, so I've run into a major hitch in my plan. Time to make a video. Seems simple, right? And it would be, except that I have an old school 8mm camera and no way of hooking it up to my computer to post new videos.

So, this camera that I have is a Samsung model SCL610, and it has two possible outputs that I could use, though I'm not sure which is best. There is an S-Video output and an A/V Out output. I'm guessing that the A/V Out is my best bet, but how do I plug it into my computer?! The jack for theoutput is what seems to be a standard 1/8" plug, and I assume that the best thing I could do is plug this into a usb port on the cpu. Does anyone know anything that will help me?

Confused,
M. Chase

ps~also, since I know that all five of you who are now following me are just positively dying to know,  I laid down the structure for my next song today.  It's one I wrote a very long time ago and it's about time I made it real.  I should have it finished by weeks end if all goes well.  If not, then it could be months ;)

****UPDATE****  So I've found a little device on eBay called the "easycap" and it is exactly what I was looking for.  Hopefully it will actually work.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Well...

So I'm happy to announce that I finished recording another song today. Of course there are things that I'd like to improve upon, but it does me no good to just hold out forever, hoping that I will lay down that golden track any day now...

Next thing you know, weeks have gone by and you are still working on the same old song. And in fact you've actually started to despise both yourself and the music that you are trying to create. That's what started happening with the last song I was working on.

So in this new track, I'm trying some new techniques as far as recording the drum machine and guitars. I've got a Fender mini amp that I tried playing the drums through to give them a more acoustic presence. For the bass, I just ran it straight into the board. And the guitar is set with a some extra gain through the mini. Vocals are direct in too. The track has minimal effects; I added a splash of reverb and delay to the vox and guitar track for presence and whipped up a little "pan magic" to make it sound a little more live.

Things I'd like to work through include a lot of hissing in the background, figuring out a way to get a clean vocal without overdriving my mic, and getting more than one guitar tone into the song. Enough about what I think, though. Here's the song. Enjoy, "Well".



***Update***

Alright, so I posted this a little over a week ago, and I'm realizing that I need to put a little more into it than I did.  Let's talk about this song, alright?  Forget about the technicalities of the recording, and the musicianship or lack thereof (depending on your tastes).  As you will be hearing from me quite a bit if you send any amount of time absorbing this blog, there is something of a back story that needs to be observed before I can adequately explain what this song is all about.

It all started with a fellow named Ben.  I was fresh out of the army, and working at my first full time civilian office job in Bellevue.  I had gotten the job through a very close friend of mine, and was doing pretty well at it when this tall, bouncy guy with tousled and slightly greasy blonde hair, rumpled clothing, and some kind of fire under his ass.  He was a temp, and so no one really got on him about his appearance.  Besides, his attitude and willingness to work hard more than made up for it.

After he had been working there for about three weeks, I saw him standing by the bus stop after quiting time and so I thought I would give him a ride home.  Then rides became a regular occurrence and we eventually started hanging out quite a bit when we found out that we were both really interested in expanding consciousness and spiritualism, meditating, and other soul-related stuff.  One SeaFair weekend, we wanted to get to Capitol Hill for something and driving was just not an option, so we decided to walk there.

We had such a good time and felt so good about the whole thing that we made a decision that any time Ben and I were going somewhere together, we would walk and only if necessary would we utilize public transportation.  In our prime, we were averaging 50 miles on foot per week with treks that took us from Richmond Beach to Sodo.  At one point we covered 75 miles in one weekend.  We barely even slept.  It became an addiction.

The solitude that comes with being constantly on the move and all of the thoughts that finally had the time to think for themselves led me to figure out what matters to me in this life.  Most of the philosophies that I still adhere to were formulated on the road.  And though Ben and I would have conversations from time to time, we mostly just gave each other a reason to keep up the pace.

But as lives tend to go, Ben and I started moving in different directions.  I was getting saner and saner as I aged (debatable I'm sure) and he was losing grip.  I had been fired from my job and he had been hired on as a permanent staff member in my place, and the office environment wasn't kind to his free spirit.  He could've been a shaman in a hut and not a dweeb in a cubicle.  Should've.  But reality is what it will be and times were tough on him.  The last time we were together was after a night of music at the Sound Asylum, and he was being extra spacey.  He wanted to get on the road, to get moving, and tramp about.  Not just in Seattle, but all over.  And though I though it was a novel idea, I wasn't about to uproot myself from my band and my life in Seattle.  It was all still pretty new to me and I wasn't ready to even consider it.  Well, he didn't like that and he went off on a tirade about no one caring what he did with his life, which ended in him slamming his arm in the car door repeatedly to prove that he felt nothing.  I don't remember what happened next but I wasn't having any part in his newfound sense of destruction, so I kindly took my leave of his immediate friendship.

After Ben and I stopped hanging out, one thing that remained in my life was the walking.  I didn't feel right if a week went by without an inordinately long hike that involved taking the long way around so that I would have a chance to walk down an unfamiliar street.  I would be alone in the seediest sections of the CD during the darkest hours of the night just to feel alive.  The sounds of the city around me were a constant reminder that I wasn't alone in this world, even if I was in lonely company.

With all of the time I was spending alone on the road, I took up the habit of talking to myself.  I was pretty self conscious about it at first, but after a while I stopped caring if I had an audience.  But there was this one specific time that I was tramping and I was full on back and forthing with myself in a debate on some incidental or another when this clean cut suburbanite lady crossed my path.  As we approached each other, I could see that I was frightening her and that she thought I was going to snap or take her purse or something.  I can imagine that from her perspective I looked pretty scary with my frazzled long blonde hair and huge baggy clothing, but I had never really thought about it before then.  At first I was in a tizzy about it though.  "Who is she to be judging me?" I thought.

When I got home that night I sat down with my Harmony and started riffing out when I came across the chords that I ended up using in this song.

And that, my friends, is the short version.  Seriously.

Also, I'd like to add that one of the themes of this song is the internet.  It's so strange and beautiful to me that we can express ourselves in a way that can be decoded by people from all walks of life both nw and in to the future.

Here's to Al Gore.