and of course the audio which really is the important part of this enterprise.
Music as Shapes
So I wrote Circles on guitar, circa 2004. The lyrics came much later and are based loosely on an infatuation I was having at the time. At the time I gave no thought to the time signature, in 6/8 to the best of my guesstimation, not my usual modus operandi! However the main draw which prompted pursuit of this musical idea was the shape of the pattern I began with. The idea was to take that shape and invert it on the guitar betwixt the chorus and the verse. That is, viewed as a shape the chords made on the fret board, played in one direction for the chorus and shifting up a whole step in the verse and subsequently reversed or inverted the shape and thus provide its distinctive sound. This was, in my mind, away to generate novel musical structures visually. This video is my most recent attempt at resurrecting this song, rhythm section and all. When I first recorded it in 2004 I was able to get more elaborate with the drums and bass thanks to a little program called cubase. I even got the program to play a piano emulating the guitar part. I have since learned to play the keyboard myself. Though my interpretation of the guitar part is not note for note, as it was with a score editor in the edition of cubase I have, which is no longer available to play it and I lost the file though the recording still exists. I am happy with this recent version. Note I wrote about wanting to accomplish this effort in 2019.
Music and Media
I wanted a video to share it because, I hear so many good things about the internet gravy train that many are on and I wanted to get on board and decorate my mashed potatoes accordingly! But being a perfectionist recent audio and video efforts left me wondering is this ready enough to share? I almost released a previous version because the audio recording was done, its what you will hear here, and I was tired of battling my ego on the visual front. But after repeated editing attempts with the early shoots, I realized it could be better. So I reshot the video, synced it as best I could, and voila!, something I can put out there, to an audience of maybe? Also my mission statement is ‘Music and Media to Incite Insight and Invigorate Innovation’ so there is that to contend with and aid with maintaining a measure of consistency here on the blog.
Insight and Innovation
So the innovative part was the guitar pattern being viewed a a visual construct rather than a musical one. Even though music was the result intended. I have yet to be able to similarly visualize patterns on the piano keyboard but am nevertheless enamored of the instrument and perhaps in time and with practice I will see patterns emerge I can play with. Though my recent advice to practice with ones eyes closed might seem to run contrary to that premise!?.
So, what has been the challenge concerning my on again off again romance with the recording arts? Time and inspiration? Presently the desire to share can be agonizing. So much is already out there and to get anyone to listen let alone pay attention only contributes to that struggle. Then generating the confidence to share with a world that probably won’t notice almost seems moot. As for songwriting, the process sometimes tells me things I don’t want to hear but should be dealing with, it demanding attention in an inimitable way. So avoidance is one reason I don’t write and record like I might otherwise. This despite claiming to be a musician / songwriter, the work can be painful on a number of fronts. Effort and emotion being the primary instigators of my nonchalance. To develop a song completely, at least the way I do it requires a commitment that seems to want for a payoff of some kind other than the song itself, and to be more than merely entertained by the process, and/or heaven forbid, informed by it!. Yet shouldn’t that be its own reward, art for arts sake, for the sake of the artist?
Artists of all kinds might be dealing with similar concerns and constraints such as mine. Yet. It has been said that masterworks do not arise in a vacuum. The masterful spend countless innumerable hours working at their craft, creating as they would, regarding something that mattered, creating. This despite the vicissitudinaryness of life, or in spite of it. They work at their craft pleasing the creator with in and hoping probably, for the observers from without to also take note. But even if that didn’t happen so what, something surely is gleaned from the experience and progress, inching towards a better version of the next creation or themselves can’t be a bad thing.
As is ever the case, and this is obviously true for more than just myself. There are other unlimited idealistic aspirations clamoring for attention, and these want to be developed as well. Drawing, building, making, creating, even seeking away to survive on these efforts, is a creative act. This seems a challenge when so many want to share their masterworks in the making. How to choose what to peruse? Perhaps we can be grateful so many creative energies are being brought to the fore. Though the ever flowing wellspring of creative pursuits might seem overwhelming, it should allow us to realize we are not alone in wanting to do likewise. At the very least we are doing it because we want to and it’s important that we do. Someone will benefit if not directly from our creations then indirectly by letting our creativity flourish and express itself we can be more comprehending in our everyday interactions.
So as the song suggests “In circles, run around” “Fly- – around in circles”. There are other songs to record, other projects to see through other things to share regardless if I get attention or not. I do because I want to, I don’t for the same reason, just depends on the…?