As a youngster I learned guitar, and during college and grad school played a lot with others while also doing a lot of home recording on a four-track cassette recorder. Over the course of nearly a couple of decades I amassed a ton of material -- mostly instrumental songs although some include vocals with original lyrics.
I would compile these into “albums” and share them with friends and others via cassette. Some of it got played on college radio stations and in other contexts, but it was mainly just a very small, mostly private thing done for fun. And once the poker thing started in earnest during the early 2000s (along with my full-time teaching career), the music-making slowed down considerably. I still play guitar, but haven’t recorded anything of note since, well, this blog started back in 2006.
The Bandcamp site enables DIY-types (or former DIY-types) like me to share music easily, and so after a lot of archival work I’ve reconstructed seven “albums” and am releasing all of them today. Streaming is free and I’ve set it up to allow folks to download the albums for free, too, only paying if you’d like. I’m obviously not looking to start a career or make any cabbage from this, but rather just want to share.
The number of hours I put into these recordings is kind of staggering to think about -- it really is the product of years of creative activity. All the songs are original, and there’s a decent mix of styles throughout. Six of the seven albums are entirely instrumental, the exception being Welcome to Muscle Beach which I’m calling my “pop album” containing vocals and original lyrics.
Here is a little bit about each of the seven albums:
Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose
Ash Bowie of Polvo fame. The first is a two-and-a-half-minute piece with Ash on guitars and me on fretless bass. The second is a nearly 26-minute opus I spent months putting together, with Ash coming in for a ripping three-minute solo during the second half -- a crazily ambitious experiment in layering guitars, keyboards, and piano that I’m kind of dumbfounded looking back ever got completed.
The Omni-Balsamic Reinvigorator
Welcome to Muscle Beach
Like I say, I’m sharing all of these “albums” mainly for fun and with the hopes that someone might enjoy them. Would love any feedback anyone has, obviously.
Also, while I’m at it, let me throw this out there. If you’re someone who enjoys shooting and editing videos for fun -- say, abstract ones of nature scenes, time-lapse stuff, or anything at all, really -- and would like to match any of my music with a video, let me know as I’d love to do it. I will eventually do some of that myself, I think, if only to have a few short vids on YouTube that I could point people to in order to hear some of the tracks. But if you have something and would like some music to match with it, get in touch.
Like I say, it’s all free, so go get the whole seven-album box set, if you like! And if you do listen to any of it and have any thoughts about it at all, let me know.