Life in the Land of the Rising Sun

Sunday, August 10, 2008

A Song I Had to Make

Things are gradually winding back to a routine here at the old homestead. No, things are not back to normal. They probably won't be for a long time if ever. But at least we're getting a handle on things.

The various funeral and mourning requirements are still going on, with visits to the graveyard every day and another ritual at the temple scheduled for tomorrow (and two weeks after that, and two weeks after that...). It's touching the amount of attention given to the deceased by the bereaved, but it sure makes closure difficult.

In the meantime I managed to complete another song. I'd been toying with the melody for a while but had been too busy with other things to do anything with it. This time I decided to make some time. It's my second all-digital work using Cakewalk Sonar 7 digital music production software and my Roland Sonic Cell. Things went a lot more smoothly this time than they did with "Perspective", my last work (finished last June) since I finally have the settings right and the learning curve mostly overcome. I was able just to concentrate on the creative aspect for the most part.

The song is called "Promise", and that's exactly what it is, a promise to my wife. I started with the rhythm parts using MIDI programming and added mandolin, guitars, and bass. I thought about having complex, layered vocals at first, but I stuck with a single, raw, blue and gritty vocal track that seems more appropriate anyway (though the main reason I did it that way is that my throat has been so raw and gritty these days...most likely because of all that incense I have to breathe every day). Anyway, give it a listen and tell me what you think.

UPDATE - I've added a new track, an instrumental called "BLUE Taxi". It was just a spontaneous idea that popped out of my muse, and it was a lot of fun to make. It's definitely a much needed breather from the understandable grimness at home. Enjoy!

More details on my Minstrel's Muse site.



  • Just checking...

    By Blogger The Moody Minstrel, at 12:31 AM  

  • when i listen to your music, i always see Rush. :)

    i think it's great that you started and FINISHED a song for your wife... to make a promise. how beautiful.

    i think your voice sounds fine... you have a nice singing voice.

    hashim's been using some digital stuff himself... but can't remember what it is...

    By Blogger Um Naief, at 12:41 AM  

  • MM, I think this is the first time I've heard your voice and it sounds great. There's something a little "eastern" about this piece that I don't have the knowledge or skill to articulate. I like it.

    By OpenID nikkipolani, at 8:54 AM  

  • Like the melody... like the voice... but kinda difficult for me to understand the lyric.

    By Blogger Selba, at 11:00 AM  

  • Right off the bat, the fidelity is MU-huhuhuhu-CH nicer.

    I like it. It has the depth of your other heartful numbers. You always navigate that emotional terrain well. I hope it brings comfort and healing to you both.

    (As far as influences go, I hear some Rush, Ian Anderson, and Ride, but mostly Moody Minstrel).

    By Blogger Don Snabulus, at 11:56 AM  

  • I agree with D.S. sincere words.

    Moody is still Moody! You remind me that song again.

    By Anonymous L.C_D, at 5:00 PM  

  • Gosh what a time you have had and are having still. I have just caught up with your posts about the death of your mother-in-law. My condolences to your near family in their grief and all the things that have to be done. It all sounds so complicated.

    By Blogger Peceli and Wendy's Blog, at 8:42 PM  

  • Good thing you have your music huh!

    Nice work, the mixing is a lot better this time around. I'm getting a bit of pre Mr. Roboto Styx vibe.

    By Blogger Swinebread, at 3:28 AM  

  • I think I am finally enough acquainted with your style that if I heard something similar I'd probably say, "Hey...that sounds like Moody Minstrel...!"

    I like the last few seconds of it, and there seems to be nothing wrong with your voice.

    Most importantly, though, does your wife like it? It's not every day a wife gets a song written just for her by her hubby!

    By Blogger Olivia, at 7:04 AM  

  • Um Naief

    I'll probably never shake the Rush influence completely.

    I don't write songs for my wife as often as I should. It's not easy to do.

    Hashim hasn't replied to my posts in ages. What has he been up to lately?


    It's hard to shake the Eastern influence, too, since I live in an Asian country. (That's life, I suppose! ;-) ) I'm glad you don't think my singing is atrocious. I've been having so much trouble with my voice for various reasons...but maybe I'm just being overly critical.

    I'll e-mail you the lyrics if you like.

    Don Snabulus
    Writing heartfelt tunes seems natural but is never easy for me. Musically, I have more of a tendency to lash out than reach out.

    I don't think I'll ever shake the M.M. influence, even though I've been told by some people that there's too much of it!

    Moodier and moodier...and now with even better tools in Studio Moodio!

    Death is a VERY complicated thing here, Wendy. So many rituals, so many customs, so many's mind boggling.

    Better mixing capabilities is one of the things I like best about Sonar 7, not to mention almost unlimited tracks! I'm still learning, and yes...I'm thankful for the music, too.

    Thanks, m'lady! I'll take that as a compliment, though as I mentioned to Snabbie, I have heard from certain people that my style is "too recognizable". (What can I say? I know what I like!) But maybe now that I have more powerful tools at my disposal I can try being a little more ambitious.

    My wife hasn't heard the song yet. She wants to wait a while and build up her defenses a bit first so as to avoid another bout of impassioned weeping. I can understand that.

    Wait a minute...the last few seconds of the song... M'lady, the last few seconds of the track is blank space! T-T

    I'm glad you think nothing's wrong with my voice. I was having some pitch problems, and I sang gravelly on purpose to cover up the mild hoarseness, but...if it works, then hey! No problems!

    By Blogger The Moody Minstrel, at 1:40 AM  

  • Hey, what you doing, giving me a hard time, eh?

    Let me rephrase. I like the "riffy" thing at the end of the song....


    By Blogger Olivia, at 4:10 AM  

  • Okay, that's what I thought you meant, but one can't be too careful, right? ;-)

    By Blogger The Moody Minstrel, at 11:26 AM  

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