When we last left our adventure, we were drunk, in a bar, in the future, with a trombone... (I should have brought a fez...! )
However - something unfortunate, but I suppose inevitable, happened... My primary sequencing keyboard (Ensoniq SD-1) finally died.
A brief moment of silence....
I have used Ensoniq keyboard controller/sequencers since somewhere around Ronald Reagan... (including the infamous ESQ-1 [that was stolen from me] and a borrowed VFXsd). I can't really explain why, but I found the interface intuitive and I spent more time creating and less time worrying about what is connected to what.... Unfortunately, the easy road is rarely the right one...
I took an Electronic Music course at Duquesne in the 80s and have known how to connect keyboards to a computer since then, but rather than making it happen, I became more and more reliant on the Ensoniq(s). Technology grew by leaps and bounds... software too... but I kept plodding away because it was comfortable and I didn't want to give up on what I knew. I should know better...
but, Orbit's are hard to change.
The final three songs for Orbit were lost in this crash - not to mention an archive of hundreds of sequenced ideas that were only part done stretching back (literally) 20 years. I have them on disc, and suppose that I could buy another Ensoniq and get them back, but I'm no longer sure it is worth it. The ideas that were good, I can re-record any time, the rest... well, probably weren't that good to begin with... (that said, expect a rare track barrage in the coming months...!)
It's simply time I started looking ahead rather than behind.
I am convinced it is one of the biggest traps in life.
Slam is overseeing the final renovations to the studio.
I've taken this as a sign to modernize the studio. Picked up a new mixer, a MOTU midi express unit, a nice Furhman power conditioner, and connected all of the working keyboards up to the Mac using Logic Express. I'm not entirely up to speed - dinosaur that I am, but step by step, I am starting to wonder why I didn't do this back in the 80s. (ok, I couldn't afford a computer, but forgetting that for now...)
The release of the last three songs on Orbit has obviously been delayed while I re-record. I still clearly hear the parts in my head and I'm pretty confident I can get them back to where they were - if not better. I'm hoping for Dec. / Jan. / March to release the final three songs. Orbit: A SoundStory will be released as a package in the Spring of 2014 in digital book format only. (iBook, perhaps Kindle, etc) I love the idea of really creating a multimedia experience including photography, poetry, music, video, and more. From how things look so far, I think this is going to be a really cool and unique way to experience an album.
Now... the other bad news...
Those of you that have seen me out and about over the past three years know that I'm not exactly a gentle player. This, combined with years of being dragged around and set up in 90 degree heat (and occasionally rain), have caused my portable live keyboard to also fail... (awful timing too, I had three gigs for December I had to pass on... :( ) So, while things get sorted out, I am taking 2014 off from playing out. (though, you just never know...) I've really had fun over the past few years and hope to be back out with a new show in 2015. On the plus side, sequencing on the pc will make a whole new set of things possible for the live show and I'm hoping to have a full band with me... (stay tuned!)
We have also been hard at work on a video for Reverie - which I hope to have ready for the holidays....(?!)
Here's a quick projection test I did last night.... Super cool and fun!