Monday 5 September 2011

A return to the late night creativity...

I am partying like it's 2007. It's nearly midnight, I am awfully tired, and after far too many takes, I've managed to prepare a recording that I am ready to share.

It's crazy to think that it was over four years ago that I first started trying to learn and reinterpret The Zombie's She's Not There. Not to say that I've been working on it for four years - in fact after I figured out that small part of the vocal melody I pretty much left it alone until last week.

Reinterpreting the song has been primarily an exercise in getting back into two handed piano playing, and a bit of a challenge to myself in terms of leaving some space - not playing my chords on quarter notes for instance. While I have definitely created some space, I think my current version is too close to the original - I probably need to space the melody out a bit as well.

Of course, this is in no small part inspired by Malcolm McLaren's cover from the Kill Bill soundtrack, and is maybe too close to that version - maybe I need to revisit the whole thing?

So here it is - only the first verse - you'll see I haven't figured out the chords for the final part - still, not bad for a couple short hours from my very rusty piano hands.

She's Not There by KevinPlaysTheBlues
Drums courtesy of NI Maschine.
OhmBoyz delay.

Wednesday 24 August 2011

Kevinplaystheblues' Space Echo Templates

I recently purchased an RE-201 space echo - what a machine! If you've come here, you probably already know what the Space Echo is,but just in case, there's great run-downs on Vintagesynth and Wikipedia.

After painstakingly getting it in sync with a track I was working on, I quickly realised I needed a template to avoid going to that trouble again.

And so, in collaboration with my lovely designer partner, in super high res and released under creative commons, I have some Space Echo Templates to present:

Enjoy, space echo users!

Creative Commons License
Roland RE-201 Space Echo Template by Jingston Chuarchitects is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

This needs a point...

Fixing the media on those old posts has been an interesting experience.

I was a stronger piano player a couple years back, it seems. On the flipside, though, some of the stuff seems really weak - particularly in terms of typing.

Technique aside, the reading process has made me question the value of a practice/development diary. I am still not sure what I am going to use this for now. Maybe tracks I am working on. Maybe some gear reviews? I have something useful in mind...wait ten seconds...

Monday 22 August 2011

Technical difficulties

I've imported my old wordpress stuff here. Not sure my streaming media stuff is still working - the MP3 links should still work though.

Actually, I've the streaming was working, but I couldn't stop it preloading all the Mp3s - that's sure to piss people off? Just added some links for now. Maybe I need to work on SoundCloud or something.

Enjoy the history.


Years on I've decided to reinvigorate this blog.

I went through a serious musical lull from 2008. The acquisition of a mortgage...a dog....a growing love of gardening and fell by the wayside. Piano lessons stopped. Composition stalled. I'd bust on the drums every now and then, but it was a far cry from my peak.

Then, last November, Crackers and Cam dragged me to Better Music. I walked up to pro keys, and set my eyes on a Moog Little Phatty. I donned the headphones and suddenly it all came back. That Moog sound!

I walked away on cloud nine.

Three weeks later I had a Minimoog Voyager. (little phatty = doing things by halves in my view).

And so it came back.  Ever since Kieran Roberts lent me Minimoog #1007 back in 2002, it's been a machine I loved. That day I worked into the music store it occured to me that this was no longer a pie in the sky dream - a 'one day' fantasy - this was something I could now make happen.

Six months later, my studio has grown exponentially. SH-101. Taurus. Tenori-In. OP-1. Maschine. X0XB0X. Moogerfoogers. Space Echo. It's all happening. I have gear addiction.

Now to do something with it...

Monday 2 March 2009


So someone at work discovered my blog via my email and a running joke has drifted around the office over the christmas song. It doesn't bother me too much, but saddens me that I haven't updated for almost a year, and haven't played piano much for ages either. I am not doing lessons anymore. I guess the depressing world of the public service has won over.

I'll get back into it one day soon, I am sure.

Hi Work people!

Monday 14 April 2008

I am still here...

In fact, I am probably doing more than ever. Writing lots of songs in both the ballady and post rocky electronic spaces. I originally came here to try and keep track of progression of songs and development, but its just a time thing. Time on the piano is rare and I suppose its better spent playing than writing about playing.

I might try and get some of the songs up, but we'll see.

Trying to work in a few different places - continuing to write the KPTB style songs but also trying to work up my speed and reading and inversions and progressions and such.

I hit a point where some of my songs need guitar, but guitarists seem to all be unreliable pricks by nature. I am currently investigating Ableton as a looper to allow me to perform solo. We'll see..