Music And Musicians

Somegeezer

New member
Much along the lines of the earlier, and seemingly popular 'Gaming And Gamers' thread, how about some music talk? I'm not talking favourite songs and what you are listening to... We already have threads similar to those.

This thread is for those of us who can actually play music, and that does include all the ways you can create it. Whether you play guitar, sing, do it on a computer, bang your head against a wall... Though I'll worry about you if the latter. =P

How about some links to some of your stuff on the net? If you have a youtube vid or a soundcloud account, feel free to share with us.

Please no links to commercial stuff, which probably includes stores to buy your CD or something... I imagine your comment would be deleted and your account suspended.

Myself, I mainly play bass. I own a 4 and 5 string, hoping to get myself a 6 next year some time. I often say kit is my second instrument, but without owning one, it's hard to really get much practise in. =P On the opposite foot, I own 3 guitars and can barely get a tune out of them. >.<
My first instrument was piano/keyboards, and soon after, steel pans. Unfortunately, I never did really like piano keys, and barely use my keyboard for anything more than MIDI work. Steel pans are just damn expensive.

There are a lot of instruments I'd love to learn, but my next to put effort into will be my voice and theremin. The voice is often an underrated instrument and I certainly haven't put mine to its full potential.

I have a good little set up with my computer for recording. [the main reason I built it, even if I do game more often...]
I have a few solo projects I'm planning or in the middle of, that hopefully I can share with you guys not long from now.

Until then, here's some links to things I've been doing the last few years:
http://myspace.com/roadkillwakefield
http://youtube.com/gargoyleinvirtue
http://facebook.com/shadowsofviolence

Let's hear from you guys. =]
 

ThatGirlInGray

New member
I don't have any youtube links as I'm not much of a performer, but I've been musical pretty much my entire life. Piano, then trumpet, french horn, and voice (mostly choir, a little solo), and then in college I got a Bachelor's of Music in Music Education (different than a BA in Music) which required me to learn at least the basics of almost every instrument in the orchestra. And I took guitar for a semester or two.

I don't really like teaching private lessons, so I don't anymore. The original goal was High School Choir Director but with the way Arts programs in CA have gone that didn't pan out.

While I occasionally miss choir I don't miss getting annoyed with the dozens of people who are wasting our rehearsal time by not being prepared. I love singing with my kids and with TGIB and would at some point like to sing at an open mike night and maybe local clubs, but it's not a current burning desire. :)
 

Somegeezer

New member
I don't have any youtube links as I'm not much of a performer, but I've been musical pretty much my entire life. Piano, then trumpet, french horn, and voice (mostly choir, a little solo), and then in college I got a Bachelor's of Music in Music Education (different than a BA in Music) which required me to learn at least the basics of almost every instrument in the orchestra. And I took guitar for a semester or two.

I don't really like teaching private lessons, so I don't anymore. The original goal was High School Choir Director but with the way Arts programs in CA have gone that didn't pan out.

While I occasionally miss choir I don't miss getting annoyed with the dozens of people who are wasting our rehearsal time by not being prepared. I love singing with my kids and with TGIB and would at some point like to sing at an open mike night and maybe local clubs, but it's not a current burning desire. :)
Never heard of a Bachelor's in Music, what is it?
I tried getting onto a BA course doing something in music, but back in college, when I did my BTEC [an equivalent of 3 A levels], I didn't do as well as I'd hoped. Pretty much a waste of 2 years of my life. Should have waited until I was ready, rather than rushing into it right after high school. There's way too much pressure on people to go right to college and then right to uni. I'd rather just find a steady job and take things in my own pace.

I'd love to do private lessons. I've taught friends in the past. In fact, I taught 2 close friends to play kit, which I actually taught myself to play. Such an easy instrument to learn, but one of the most difficult to master.

One thing I do miss from college were my ensembles. We were always very organised. Such a shame that it's so hard to find bands like that outside of it. Just splitting with my last gigging band, I know how easily things can get in the way.
 

ThatGirlInGray

New member
A Bachelor of Music generally means it was a more intense, specific (Monochrome- rigorous! :p) program of study than for a Bachelor of Arts. The school I went to offered a BM (*snicker*) in music education, music business, or music performance. Instead of a schedule that was some General Education requirements, some Major requirements and some Electives, a schedule for a BM was almost all Gen Ed or Major classes. I think I took 2 electives in 4 years. There was 2 years of Music Theory, 2 and a half years of Music History, Conducting, Voice Pedagogy, plus ALL the instrumental classes and various performing groups one had to be in. Oh, AND the classes about Education Theory and Practice. So, lots more required for a BM than a BA .
 

Somegeezer

New member
A Bachelor of Music generally means it was a more intense, specific (Monochrome- rigorous! :p) program of study than for a Bachelor of Arts. The school I went to offered a BM (*snicker*) in music education, music business, or music performance. Instead of a schedule that was some General Education requirements, some Major requirements and some Electives, a schedule for a BM was almost all Gen Ed or Major classes. I think I took 2 electives in 4 years. There was 2 years of Music Theory, 2 and a half years of Music History, Conducting, Voice Pedagogy, plus ALL the instrumental classes and various performing groups one had to be in. Oh, AND the classes about Education Theory and Practice. So, lots more required for a BM than a BA .
Sounds like an American thing then really. Had a look into it and apparently over here, it is included within a BA. Sounds normal. We English love to just thrw ourselves into the deep end with a ton of information at once.

If you want to do something more intense and specific here, you need to complete your BA, then go onto a Master's. I really doubt something like a Master's could really help me career wise though.

I'll certainly try get in to do a BA in music at some point, but probably as far as I'll take it.
 

ThatGirlInGray

New member
You would do a Master's for something even more specific and intense here too. I got my Bachelor's of Music in Music Education- Choral and General Music. If my plan of being a High School Choir Director had worked out, I would have gone on to get my Master's in Choral Conducting, most likely.

A BA would still have the Theory, History, and performing group requirements. What it didn't have iirc were the instrument-specific classes, Conducting, or the education or business classes. None of the degrees had as many performance requirements as the music performance degree *shudder*.
 
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Somegeezer

New member
You would do a Master's for something even more specific and intense here too. I got my Bachelor's of Music in Music Education- Choral and General Music. If my plan of being a High School Choir Director had worked out, I would have gone on to get my Master's in Choral Conducting, most likely.

A BA would still have the Theory, History, and performing group requirements. What it didn't have iirc were the instrument-specific classes, Conducting, or the education or business classes. None of the degrees had as many performance requirements as the music performance degree *shudder*.
Yeah, we have the instrument specific classes and business and even law added in with it though. For a 3 year course, you have to do a lot of work.

I'd love to do a performance degree. I think it would suit me more to be in a practical environment, rather than the masses of writing I've often had to be doing. But you're right, they really expect a high performance from you just to think about letting you in. I never did grades on my instrument either, so I'm not even sure where to start. =P
 

ThatGuyInBlack

New member
I've sang all my life. In my family, it's just what you do.

Learned to play guitar when I was about fifteen. I'm not great, lol. I'm a rythym guitarist by nature. Nothing complicated, but I think I do all right. I play mostly Texas/Red Dirt country, but I jump genres pretty regularly. Basically if I like the song, I'll learn it.
 

Somegeezer

New member
I've sang all my life. In my family, it's just what you do.

Learned to play guitar when I was about fifteen. I'm not great, lol. I'm a rythym guitarist by nature. Nothing complicated, but I think I do all right. I play mostly Texas/Red Dirt country, but I jump genres pretty regularly. Basically if I like the song, I'll learn it.
I mainly play Metal. Specifically Progressive Death Metal is my favourite. But I have projects spanning many styles. Love listening to all types of things. Can't beat a bit of Kate Rusby now and then. Bonny Yorkshire lass, she is. =] I think what people find surprising is that I really love Trance music too. But as a 90s kid, I was brought up when Trance was coming up for the first time. Electronic music had a surge of new genres after the 80s New Wave cheesey synth stuff. =P Ambient is another electronic genre I love. Something I'd love to get more into making myself too... and then there's Jazz. Other than Classical music, Jazz also helped create all modern music as we know it. But even going back to the very roots, I can really appreciate it.
 

bella123456

New member
I'm learning violin. To say I play violin would appear to be stretching the english language a bit far :)

I've been learning for 2 years and I play in a beginners string ensemble. Hard thing to start in your mid thirties...having never even learned to read music.

My son plays trumpet and I've just given him a drum set for Christmas
a. Because he has wanted to learn for ages, and
b. I have an intense desire to annoy one of my neighbours :)

My fiance is a DJ (minimal house/minimal tech house)

There is music playing in this household at any given point in time. Every genre...
Well, not much death metal I should add. And I'm not sure what progressive death metal is ?
 

ThatGirlInGray

New member
I'm learning violin. To say I play violin would appear to be stretching the english language a bit far :)

I've been learning for 2 years and I play in a beginners string ensemble. Hard thing to start in your mid thirties...having never even learned to read music.

Good for you!! I can't remember a time when I didn't know how to read music, so I can't imagine how difficult it is for you, but I know picking up anything new at this age can be hard! I'm mid-30's also and just started ASL classes last semester, so I sort of feel your pain! Monochrome has always wanted to learn violin/viola. I'm pushing for viola when he has time because I can't STAND the high E on a violin! ;)
 

Tesla

New member
I come from a musical family. My brother plays guitar, bass and piano and he sings, my mother sang and played the tambourine in a band when she was younger and my uncle plays just about anything he can create sound with.

I sang in chorus in elementary school and middle school, but I grew shy in high school. Last year I started learning how to play guitar (my bf teaches music) and I'm dabbling in learning music theory and how to read music (as the theoretical questions I was asking couldn't be answered without explaining music theory to me).

Just last night I was surprised by how much I have improved and how much more confidence I have when playing music. I used to shut myself up in a room, hoping no one could hear me. I would stand there still when anyone would ask me to play something for them, terrified that it would sound like fingernails on a chalkboard! :eek: Now I can just close my eyes and let my fingers do the work, while I bob my head. It's especially exciting when I get a strum pattern and rhythm down because that was my biggest hurdle (that and my short fingers).

I'm lucky to have such a talented bf who is willing, able and eager to assist me in this venture. Although he did let slip that he couldn't wait for me to play barre chords so he can solo over them. Methinks he'd like a live in jam partner. And I am totally okay with that! :D
 

MichelleZed

New member
Yay--I saw some violin in here already.

My husband and I are both violinists by trade... we play in a symphony orchestra together.
 

Somegeezer

New member
I'm learning violin. To say I play violin would appear to be stretching the english language a bit far :)

I've been learning for 2 years and I play in a beginners string ensemble. Hard thing to start in your mid thirties...having never even learned to read music.

My son plays trumpet and I've just given him a drum set for Christmas
a. Because he has wanted to learn for ages, and
b. I have an intense desire to annoy one of my neighbours :)

My fiance is a DJ (minimal house/minimal tech house)

There is music playing in this household at any given point in time. Every genre...
Well, not much death metal I should add. And I'm not sure what progressive death metal is ?
Progressive metal is just what it says on the tin. Progressive Metal and Death Metal combined. Technical Death Metal is a similar style, but more based on complex techniques, rather than complex theory.
Opeth and Gojira are two of my fav Death Prog. Origin and Blotted Science are two more technical ones. I'd say Meshuggah is often right in the middle of the two. =]

Don't worry about not knowing how to read music. There are many ways to read it, other than the standard - Which I find to actually confuse more people than it helps. TAB is definitely one of the best ways to read music for stringed [and especially fretted] instruments.
When i played steel pans a few years back, we used a notation system specifically created for the instrument, made by my tutor. It gave a lot of emphasis to chord patterns and melody flowed underneath it. But it also required you to know some basic theory yourself.



I come from a musical family. My brother plays guitar, bass and piano and he sings, my mother sang and played the tambourine in a band when she was younger and my uncle plays just about anything he can create sound with.

I sang in chorus in elementary school and middle school, but I grew shy in high school. Last year I started learning how to play guitar (my bf teaches music) and I'm dabbling in learning music theory and how to read music (as the theoretical questions I was asking couldn't be answered without explaining music theory to me).

Just last night I was surprised by how much I have improved and how much more confidence I have when playing music. I used to shut myself up in a room, hoping no one could hear me. I would stand there still when anyone would ask me to play something for them, terrified that it would sound like fingernails on a chalkboard! :eek: Now I can just close my eyes and let my fingers do the work, while I bob my head. It's especially exciting when I get a strum pattern and rhythm down because that was my biggest hurdle (that and my short fingers).

I'm lucky to have such a talented bf who is willing, able and eager to assist me in this venture. Although he did let slip that he couldn't wait for me to play barre chords so he can solo over them. Methinks he'd like a live in jam partner. And I am totally okay with that! :D
Sounds like a great household to be a part of. =] I hope my house can be like that one day. I didn't start playing music until high school, where we were basically forced to learn piano. I ended up joining a steel pan band early on which i enjoyed though. Didn't start really getting into music until about 14 though. That's when I picked up bass, guitar and kit. Still no good on a guitar to this day, but I plan on getting myself an 8 string at some point and pushing myself to learn. I taught myself to play kit, but still don't own one myself. It's an amazing instrument to play though. Bass has been my go to instrument since 14 though. I had a real connection right away with the sound of the whole thing. It helped that I had a friend who knew how to play and taught me some of my first stuff, until I managed to get on my own feet with it a few months later. I was also good friends with a guy who played bass as his main instrument and he gave me a lot of good tips on playing and such.

I feel bad that I couldn't have learnt even earlier. Especially as my father was/is a musician and even had his own small studio. Perhaps if I ever see him again, he can teach me how to actually play guitar. =P
 

hyperskeptic

New member
I hope the violinists won't throw things at me, but I play fiddle.

(In truth, though, I still tend to refer to myself as "a recovering violinist" rather than as a "fiddler".)

The story is that I played fiddle back in school, from age 9 until age 18. I was pretty good, but really not conservatory material. When I went of to college, I threw myself into my studies, and set my violin aside.

In grad school, I started contra dancing. If you don't know what it is, it may be worth your while to find out. My wife and I, who got to know each other on the dance floor, stopped dancing during the early child-rearing years, but started again about six years ago.

About a year after that - five years ago this very month - I pulled out my violin, called it a fiddle, and started learning dance tunes. I now play for contra dances on a regular basis, in two different bands.

Even though I currently live in the American South (in the Piedmont), I don't play a lot of old time music (that is, the traditional music of Southern Appalachia). Contra dance started in New England, and New England tunes suit it best . . . though Quebecois and Celtic tunes work, too. There's also a growing repertoire of new tunes in traditional (and less-traditional) styles, written specifically for contra dance.

I can read music, but I generally do that only long enough to learn the tune; then, I set the music aside and just play. I can also learn by ear . . . sometimes on the fly. I also aspire to improvise more freely . . . something that's developing only slowly. I think I've given up on my dream of playing like Stuff Smith, though.

I've taken up mandolin very recently, mostly just in order to learn chords. It's part of my recovery program, you see . . .

I've also recently acquired a (really) cheap (but pretty good) electric fiddle - it's blue! - mostly so I can practice quietly at night, using headphones. One of these days, though, I'm going to get a small amp and some effects pedals . . . and my journey to the dark side will be complete.

P.S. If you want to see what modern urban contra dance looks like, check this out. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ycFsaZ3338&feature=related I'm in the background of this video, but not in the band . . . I'm not nearly this good. The band is an amazing duo who combine traditional music with electronica, especially live looping; nothing in the music you hear is pre-recorded or sampled. The tune is actually a contemporary tune called "The Flying Tent." Note that this video was taken at a weekend-long dance festival, and that this particular dance sequence is really intended for experienced dancers; most contra dances are much, much more accessible than this.
 
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FelixTheCat

New member
Let's see... I played the cello since I was 10, all through high school and a little bit in college. I used to be in the local symphony, but had a falling out with the director a few years back and haven't touched it since. The rust on my fingers is probably 3 inches deep and my callouses are gone.

During college I dated a gal that tried to teach me saxophone. That was pretty different for a string player, lemme tell ya... :D

Recently, I've been trying to teach myself the bass. Got an el-cheapo four string (plus amp) and right now I'm able to do a passable major scale and the first few bars of Rush's "New World Man." Going from a fretless instrument to one with frets has also been kinda interesting; one definitely has to be more careful with finger placement, I've found.

Oh, I also used to sing quite a bit. I had a beautiful boy soprano in my youth which dived for the basement as I got older. I was involved in choirs during school and even did some musical theater. Unfortunately, I don't do much singing anymore (except in the shower, though my wife would disagree with me calling that "singing" :)). I have been wanting to get back into musical theater a little bit lately, but so far nothing has piqued my interest. One of these days, maybe...

Felix The Cat
 

Somegeezer

New member
I hope the violinists won't throw things at me, but I play fiddle.

(In truth, though, I still tend to refer to myself as "a recovering violinist" rather than as a "fiddler".)

The story is that I played fiddle back in school, from age 9 until age 18. I was pretty good, but really not conservatory material. When I went of to college, I threw myself into my studies, and set my violin aside.

In grad school, I started contra dancing. If you don't know what it is, it may be worth your while to find out. My wife and I, who got to know each other on the dance floor, stopped dancing during the early child-rearing years, but started again about six years ago.

About a year after that - five years ago this very month - I pulled out my violin, called it a fiddle, and started learning dance tunes. I now play for contra dances on a regular basis, in two different bands.

Even though I currently live in the American South (in the Piedmont), I don't play a lot of old time music (that is, the traditional music of Southern Appalachia). Contra dance started in New England, and New England tunes suit it best . . . though Quebecois and Celtic tunes work, too. There's also a growing repertoire of new tunes in traditional (and less-traditional) styles, written specifically for contra dance.

I can read music, but I generally do that only long enough to learn the tune; then, I set the music aside and just play. I can also learn by ear . . . sometimes on the fly. I also aspire to improvise more freely . . . something that's developing only slowly. I think I've given up on my dream of playing like Stuff Smith, though.

I've taken up mandolin very recently, mostly just in order to learn chords. It's part of my recovery program, you see . . .

I've also recently acquired a (really) cheap (but pretty good) electric fiddle - it's blue! - mostly so I can practice quietly at night, using headphones. One of these days, though, I'm going to get a small amp and some effects pedals . . . and my journey to the dark side will be complete.

P.S. If you want to see what modern urban contra dance looks like, check this out. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ycFsaZ3338&feature=related I'm in the background of this video, but not in the band . . . I'm not nearly this good. The band is an amazing duo who combine traditional music with electronica, especially live looping; nothing in the music you hear is pre-recorded or sampled. The tune is actually a contemporary tune called "The Flying Tent." Note that this video was taken at a weekend-long dance festival, and that this particular dance sequence is really intended for experienced dancers; most contra dances are much, much more accessible than this.
Not my kinda music and certainly not my kinda dancing. I'm definitely more the let my hair do the dancing type. ;] I do love violin though. Beautiful sound to it and an amazing instrument to play about with in electronic music. Th drones and squeals you can make with the thing... wow.

Let's see... I played the cello since I was 10, all through high school and a little bit in college. I used to be in the local symphony, but had a falling out with the director a few years back and haven't touched it since. The rust on my fingers is probably 3 inches deep and my callouses are gone.

During college I dated a gal that tried to teach me saxophone. That was pretty different for a string player, lemme tell ya... :D

Recently, I've been trying to teach myself the bass. Got an el-cheapo four string (plus amp) and right now I'm able to do a passable major scale and the first few bars of Rush's "New World Man." Going from a fretless instrument to one with frets has also been kinda interesting; one definitely has to be more careful with finger placement, I've found.

Oh, I also used to sing quite a bit. I had a beautiful boy soprano in my youth which dived for the basement as I got older. I was involved in choirs during school and even did some musical theater. Unfortunately, I don't do much singing anymore (except in the shower, though my wife would disagree with me calling that "singing" :)). I have been wanting to get back into musical theater a little bit lately, but so far nothing has piqued my interest. One of these days, maybe...

Felix The Cat
Good on you for picking up bass, I say. ;] Both mine are the "el cheapo" too. One being a 5 string though. My next one will be a Warwick. Most likely the Corvette $$. 6 strings. My amp is a lot more on top though. Gallien-Krueger 1001RB-II. Made in California too, for all you guys who love American made. =] Then I have 2 Laney Nexus NX410s. Made in England. ;D I generally only gig out with one of the things, but I got my other one for the price of fixing a broken speaker, so I'm not complaining. =P

Some of my other gear too: EKO acoustic, made in Italy; 2 cheap electrics, one of them battered and bruised, but I got for free. The other an unknown Stagg model. I wanna get rid of those electrics and perhaps get myself an 8 string Hufschmid or Mayones.
Cheap Yamaha, I got when I first got into music. Never pushed myself into it and it's now just hooked up to my computer for MIDI work.
Studio Projects B1 microphone. Amazing cheap mic. So much for so little money. I got it second hand too, so I got it for even better money. =P
I record to my computer using a Presonus Firestudio Project, going into Studio One.

I'll be getting myself an electronic drum kit later this year for recording/MIDI work and probably next year or the very end of this year, I may put some money towards a Theremin. It's an instrument I've wanted to learn for years.
 

catbird

New member
i've been known to bend a reed on the harmonica, have fooled around with a little bluegrass on a five-string banjo, and can reach the cheap seats singing baritone. country's not my style i guess. i like period vocal jazz. anyone else?
 
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