Computers and Music
Saturday, April 23, 2005
The book that I mentioned that I am reading right now is Sinclair Ross, As for Me and My House. I highly recommend it, and I think it's some of the best Canadian writing about life in the Prairies in the depression era. It's written in diary form. The main character whose diary we are reading is the preacher's wife in the small town called Horizon. The book really brings to life that period of time, with extremely vivid descriptions and you can feel the tensions and emotions that run through this small town.
Click here to find out more about this book at Amazon.com.
Friday, April 22, 2005
Mark Miller of the Globe and Mail writes a glowing review of the Kate Hammett-Vaughan Quintet's performance at Top o' The Senator in Toronto (click here).
I just happen to be listening to Kate's 2001 CD release, entitled Devil May Care, which features the same musicians as her current touring band, with Tom Foster on drums, Chris Gestrin on piano, Andre Lachance on bass, and Jim Pinchin on saxophone. On the CD cover of Devil May Care, Kate is dressed seductively in an almost mermaid-esque pose on the rocks at the Stanley Park seawall. Her CD shows off very well her versatile vocal ability, where she uses her voice like a true instrument with a wide range of techniques and colours. And I'm also entranced by Chris Gestrin's piano interpretations of these tunes, where he tastefully supports the other musicians and occasionally shows off his marvellous speed with scintillatingly clear lines. If you live in Burnaby, you can borrow a copy of this CD from the McGill Branch of the Burnaby Public Library. Or better yet, order one from Kate herself at her web site (click here).
Wednesday, April 20, 2005
Gordon Laird writes about the interesting idea that your personal web page could possibly outlive yourself! As long as you have some family around to pay your server bills, then your ideas can be immortalized and your pages can continue interacting with visitors, even long after your own death.
Of course, it is my hope that some of my web sites, such as Googleduel and the Gender Guesser can outlive me. Maybe I should even write it into my will! Not to worry, I plan on creating many more websites before I kick the bucket.
Sunday, April 17, 2005
Found an interview with Italian jazz bassist Massimo Moriconi (click here). From the interview:
AA: so touch is the most important thing. In fact I saw that you stress this topic a lot in your teaching.
Friday, April 15, 2005
I put together a little tutorial page on how to make recordings using Minidisc and transfer them to your computer. From the tutorial:
Thanks to Sony's Minidisc (MD) technology, the ability to make good quality recordings of live music is available to anyone with a total cost of under $500.
Wednesday, April 13, 2005
From an article in the Ames Tribune about jazz guitarist Charlie Hunter:
So what is jazz these days?Incidentally, Charlie Hunter has jumped on the Internet bandwagon and has posted a full live concert on his website, that is available to download (at a price). He also posts a variety of free MP3's (click here).
Tuesday, April 12, 2005
South African jazz saxophonist Robbie Jansen is in the news unfortunately for the fact that he is very ill. You can listen to some of his music at music.org.za. The track I listened to, Hotnotstee Party, combines traditional African rhythms with North American smooth jazz and modern jazz idioms. The web site notes that:
- South-African sax- and flute player Robbie Jansen, nich-named the bad boy of Cape jazz, played with bands like Spirits rejoice and Sabenza. Solo he is influenced by the music from the Capetown area, like the traditional sounds of the Khoi, the vastrap.For some photos and a nice bio, check out Robbie Jansen's artist page at music.org.za, and at his page at Mountain Records. You'll also find excerpts of recordings from two live shows, as well as an audio interview, here.
Monday, April 11, 2005
Visiting Vancouver, BC, Canada? Check out a new restaurant review I wrote of Cafe Crepe, which has many locations in the downtown area.
Listen online (click here) to NPR's David Was's review of saxophonist Charles Lloyd's new album, "Jumping the Creek".
Sunday, April 10, 2005
Check out the very creative and hip indie music videos directed by Keith Schofield. Refreshing and enjoyable, after seeing what's on MTV these days. [Via Memepool.com]
Friday, April 08, 2005
Some advice for anyone who would like to learn how to make web pages:
1. Get a copy of the most excellent Microsoft Frontpage software.
2. Follow this tutorial (which written for kids so it's fun and easy to understand.)
I should mention that if you're a musician, making a web page can be one of the most useful skills (outside of music) that you can learn. It's really worth taking the time and effort, because it will give you the ability to share your musical ideas with the world.
Found some free online sites to listen to music from India.
http://www.raaga.com - Contains streaming audio of almost all Tamil and Hindi songs.
http://www.ecse.rpi.edu/Homepages/shivkuma/personal/music/ - A great repository of Carnatic music.
http://www.eshakti.com/webcast.asp - Lots of recorded Carnatic concerts
Now you may be asking, what is Carnatic music? Well, here's a description from a web site devoted to this style of music:
What is Carnatic Music? : It is the classical music of Southern India. The basic form is a monophonic song with improvised variations. There are 72 basic scales on the octave, and a rich variety of melodic motion. Both melodic and rhythmic structures are varied and compelling. This is one of the world's oldest & richest musical traditions.
Tuesday, April 05, 2005
If you've got a moment, check out the web site of Cuban pianist and composer Hilario Duran. He is the winner of the 2005 Canadian Juno Music Awards for Canadian Jazz Album of the Year for his album New Danzon (Alma*Universal).
It is easy to hear why his album won this award - for example, check out a sample from the second track on his CD, entitled Yemaya Olodo (click here). Hilario Duran describes this track in an interview with the Latin Jazz Network:
"Yemayá Olodó" is a prayer derived from Afro-Cuban Folklore. Back in 1994 I had the chance to work on a "Santeria" recording for a Folkloric Music Label in Germany. Thanks to that project I became familiar with many of the melodies that belong to the "Oro Seco" of Afro-Cuban Santeria. Yemayá is the Goddess of the Sea and Nature in the Yoruba religion. Also, "Yemayá Olodó" is one the most beautiful prayers. As with "The Manicero,” I respected the Afro-Cuban tradition. "El Negro" plays batá drums patterns on the traps and there's a great deal of interaction between the drums and the piano. The batá drums follow poly rhythmic patterns which are constructed on 6/8 compasses, but they can go easily from 6/8 to 4/4, and we were successful in achieving that with this arrangement.The complete interview is here.
Incidentally, Duran is coming to Vancouver on May 26 - he is performing at the University of B.C. with Andy Schloss.
Monday, April 04, 2005
I just composed a new song which I call "Piece of Quiet". You can listen to my solo piano version of it here.
It's repetitive and soft like a lullaby, but it has some cool harmonic elements going on. Rather jokingly I will say that if you are a producer and would like to make it into the next big hit pop song, send me an email and we'll talk. Otherwise, just enjoy!!
Thoughts of an aspiring jazz musician and computer programmer.
View Today's Blog Entry
LOCAL BANDSGeoff Peters Trio
Sybaritic String Band
COMPUTER / MUSIC RESEARCHChord Zoo.com
Song Search by Tapping
JAM Tech at SFU
MUSIC PRODUCTIONAlan Wong Moon (Blog)
LINKSMaking your own recordings using Minidisc
Vancouver Jazz Calendar
Latest Jazz News
Jazz and Funk News
Piano Jazz on NPR
Music on Paper
Online Session Guitarist
BLOGSDJ Martian's Incredible Site!!!
Jazz and Blues Music Reviews
I Was Doing All Right
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Surfing Jazz Quartet
RECORD LABELSEighteenth Street Lounge Music
OTHER LINKSVancouver computer tutor
Vancouver Jazz festival