recordings

 

What You Have | Don’t Ask For The Moon | Into The Blue | 9 Songs | Chance: A Musical Play | Let It Fall



“Love it, makes me feel like driving with the top down on a beautiful summer day!” –Adrian Harris

This song was written for the immersive musical Quantum Janis and I’m imagining a song that Janis Joplin might’ve recorded if she had lived and matured as an artist.  In this case I had my superb and talented niece Sarah Isen record the song and I asked to try and channel Janis a bit.  This is the result.  This song was number 1 for several weeks at the Reverbnation local San Francisco chart.

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This is a song that I cut from my musical CHANCE.  This is one of my favorite songs, the kind of song I think I do best which is a bit Miles Davis Kind of Blue jazz, a dash of minimalism and a lyric that is almost all references (famous movie quotes).   I think this song would be great for a TCM Network montage and it was perfect for Sarah Isen my niece who sings in a way that slides easily from jazz to pop to a bit of R&B.

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This song also from my musical CHANCE was rewritten several times and was beautifully performed by the many actors that played the character Chance.  In the final production, I think I finally got this song right but I also loved the way Grant Richards, the young actor playing the part,  performed it so perfectly and I knew he put a lot of detailed work into it since it’s really a complex monologue with lots of emotional switches.

I asked him to record it for me and I added virtual instruments to it and I was so pleased with the results that I released it as a single.

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For many years I would sit at the piano and play a lot of songs that I love trying to see if I could find something new in them, make them own and how they came out. I started recording them keeping very simple just piano and voice without messing around with technology of recording. Then I started adding some virtual instruments and other sounds. After several years, I had 9 recordings I really liked and so I released them as a CD simply entitled 9 Songs.

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I’ve been writing for the musical theater since 1976 and sad to say most of the work has disappeared.  Since digital recording has become so affordable and sounds so great, I made a vow to myself that I would always put an original cast album for better or worse. By that I mean, I will probably cut some songs, rewrite songs and add new songs. I’ll probably also find other singer/actors that I feel do a better job than the original cast. Still, the original cast recording is important and so here it is for CHANCE. I’m proud of it!
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In the mid-90s, I acquired some of the first digital audio converters available as well as the very first software that combined midi and digital recording together.  I decided I would record a CD (this is before Apple ITunes) using the software STUDIOVISION by a company called Opcode.  I had a Mac Quadra and the Proteus XR which is a separate sound module played vi midi.  I also had a Roland drum machine.  In the process recording which took several years, I learned a lot about using computers and I found out I had a real talent for IT in the process.

But when I listen to it now, it’s not that great sonically.  The worst part is the piano patch in the Proteus that sounds very brittle and I’m not the best midi drummer.  But I like most of the songs and sometimes I think I want to re-record the whole record with real musicians and with the amazing library of virtual instruments we have now.

Still, just like the first scratchy wax records, this recording demonstrates the beginnings of midi and digital audio at a time when digital recording was mostly for classical music.  I’m still very proud of it and it was a proverbial fork in the road that I took. I see now that because of LET IT FALL, I ended up as a principal software engineer and that made a huge difference in my life.

Also available at:  amazon | itunes | napster | spotify