Thursday, August 18, 2011

Website Problems

It's come to my attention that my entire sidebar, that includes all my lesson information, has vanished for the past week or so. I am working to get this problem fixed and i apologize for any problems that might have caused. If you are interested in lessons and need to contact me, please call me at 317-903-6861. Thanks!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Record of the Day

Artist: George Harrison
Album: All Things Must Pass
Song: "Ballad of Sir Frankie Crisp

Say What?

Upon first listen, the lyrics of a song may or may not strike a chord in you. I find that half of the time I'm not even sure what words are actually being sung. And most of the time, I find myself drawn to the music before I really start to focus on the words. However, truth be told, well written lyrics can make a good song great and even make you take notice of a song where the music is less than to your liking.

I've mentioned the duo of Ben Folds and Nick Hornby previously in my blog. I believe I posted an interview that they did before the release of their album, Lonely Avenue. From what I can tell, the album didn't reach the mainstream, so to say. Either way, it is a very enjoyable record because it has such a strong presence both musically and lyrically. It sort of feels like you are listening to someone read you short stories with great music accompanying it. So in the case of this album, understanding the words, which means listening to the songs carefully and more than once in most cases, is probably needed to fully enjoy the album.

Try this little experiment... Below is the one and only music video create for Lonely Avenue. First, listen to the song without watching the video. Did you enjoy it? What was it about? Now, watch the video and see if your opinion is changed any. Did the images make the words more clear. Does the song speak to you in a different way now? Let me know what you think!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Music Video

There was a time when the music video and MTV had a place in this world. Unfortunately, MTV traded music for what is now mostly trashy television and music videos have come to play a less prominent roll.

Songs should first and foremost be recognized for the music. But there is an art to putting images with the tunes that are created. This art receives its highest recognition in the way of film scores and movie soundtracks. But lately, as I have been scrolling through YouTube and Vimeo looking for video clips, I am noticing more "official music videos." Maybe this is more a reflection of the music I am listening to, but, nevertheless, I really enjoy watching the musician's interpretation of their own music.

Today I want to share a music video by M. Ward for his song "Chinese Translation." I love that the time was spent to make an animation for this song, as I feel it fits the music perfectly. The simplicity of the video fits the song and makes for a wonderful short film. If you are unfamiliar with M. Ward, I highly suggest checking him out. Recently, his is most notable work is with Zooey Deschanel in the duo She & Him. Just as great however, are his solo projects, so check those out as well.

Friday, August 5, 2011


Writing music, and songs in particular, are just another way that artist's tell stories. The inspiration for a song, be it with vocals, or even an instrumental, typically comes from the musician's own experiences. These experiences can be first hand or something witnessed that inspire the mind to express the event through sound. Much of the music we love is because the words and the sounds created relate to our own thoughts and feelings. Consider how you listen to different types of music depending on your mood, or the weather and the time of year. In music, we are constantly searching for songs that reaffirm our own believes while providing comfort, inspiration and a sense of creativity.

It's not often, however, that we get to hear the thought process of musicians when writing their music. Most artists like to keep a shroud of mystery over the songwriting process. This often sparks the debate of, "what does this song really mean," as if there is some hidden irony to be found. Sometimes there is and sometimes there is not. Either way, it's the personal message we find in a song that is what really matters most. Two people can love the same song but for completely different reasons. All art is meant to be interpreted this way and the various ideas we all have about a particular song only add to the artist's original intent.

Love him or hate him, Dave Matthews has written plenty of songs that can be left up to interpretation. While some people just scratch their heads and groan at the sound of his scat singing, others can find all the meaning in the world and dance along to his rhythmic guitar playing. In this video from a great series VH1 did called, Storytellers, we get to hear Dave tell a comical random story followed by a more interesting story that leads into one of his most popular songs, "Ants Marching." The title of this song alone is unorthodox, but after hearing him tell his story, the songs becomes all the more interesting to listen to. Enjoy and have a great weekend!