My second single release is called "Train To Hyderabad". While I have traveled the world, I have never been to Hyderabad, a city located in India. But I have heard a lot about it. The motif of this song contains Tabla, a percussive drum that is really expressive. I created the song without the Tabla at first. But as I was composing, I realized the song was not complete. Then in the process of finishing the song, I stumbled into the Tabla as a sound in one of my sound libraries. I remembered visiting a friend in Cupertino, CA and she had a Tabla. She showed me how to play it and how to get the expressiveness from it. Anyway, I quickly played it in and it added a lot of mystery to the song. Thus, how I came up with the title. The city seems mysterious, large, bustling and full of vigor. I am hoping I pulled this off. The idea is to close your eyes and dream you are on a train from the outskirts of the city on your way into the center of it. The people, the bounce of the train, then coming to a scheduled stop. Then after a few minutes, the train is back on its way on the journey to the next stop. I hope you like it!
Find it where ever you get your music at. A Link below will allow you to preorder if you wish.
It will release February 1st, 2022
Well... I have decided I need to get some of my music out into the world. While I have done the "Beat of the Day" series for a while... I decided it's time to release my music.
With this decision comes fear, anxiety, gratitude, sense of accomplishment, sense of failure, all kinds of emotions. Let me tell you why...
Once upon a time... I was in Jr. High School... somewhere in the mid 70s... I started playing trombone. Then one day... I heard an amazing drummer for a band called Rush... well and the bass player too! I wanted to be a rock and roller in a band... and play like Geddy and Neil play! We were poor... so I built a drum kit out of whatever I could find... boxes... pans... pan lids for cymbals. You name it, I tried it. I figured out how to play drums this way. Then I started to play on the kit at the school. Once I got over my fears of rejection... turned out... people liked my drumming style.
Along the lines of bass playing (being Geddy Lee), I had an acoustic guitar that my mom had purchased a year before. I removed the B and E strings and learned bass on this acoustic guitar. Have you ever tried a Geddy Lee bass part on a 4 string Acoustic Guitar turned into a "bass"? Not easy I will admit! But I did it. Then I borrowed different basses from friends and acquaintances that were brave enough to lend a kid a bass... And I got pretty good at it. I was finding acceptance with my peers and we all know how difficult that is at the ripe old age of 15 or 16.
But one day... my mom had this statement for me... she said... "You will never amount to anything in the musical world... find a skill to prepare you for a real job".
My hopes were crushed... I was a pretty good musician with a potential career as a good one. I had visions of being a studio musician one day. All dashed by that one statement.
I went to vocational school the following year and took electronics and dropped out of the high school band and orchestra. I learned electronics. I was good at that too!
Most of you know the rest. I went in the military. Had the time of my life in all aspects of that timeframe! Travel, working on and flying on some of the coolest planes in the air. Drinking. Partying. All things boys tend to do as a young early 20 something. But I was missing my passion... the true deep calling on my life if you will. Creating music in some form or another.
Now... keep in mind... the economy in the mid-late 70s was pretty bleak... we were poor... my dad had left us... my mom was starting to develop her mental issues at the time (and I was not even sure at the time, what was going on with her). But I was devastated. I have resolved her statement to be an antidote to the condition we were in at the time. But young male brains don't process things that deeply.
I am not complaining! I am who I am now because of all of the paths the journey has taken me! I quit partying, no drinky for me anymore. Not even in a social setting. God came into my life and the experience has been second to none! I picked music back up! I found my wife... my love! My soulmate! Developed more skills. Kids arrived in our lives (that far outweighs any other experience in my life with the exception of finding my wife!) Started overspending on musical and audio gear (still do that today)! Started creating songs and passages with music!
I am in a place where I have resolved all of those things that my mom dropped on me as a young kid! And have vowed to never do that to my kids!
Success creating music is defined by me. Not society, not Billboard, or a record label. It is for the sole purpose of expression. While I may be behind the curve with that epiphany, I am going to execute it now! I am going to express! I cannot sing! So my music is instrumental! I like all genre of music. Some will come out of me with appeal to a narrow population and some will come out with a broader appeal. I used to fear that! I used to fear that people would hate my music and the damage it would do to my psyche. No more!
The regret is I did not do this sooner! Putting fear behind me!
But here we are! I am going to move forward! And music will come out of my being!
I believe God gave me this beautiful gift! It is different than others! I do not possess the talent others do! But, I have a level of talent given to me by the Creator! And music, it is the one thing that speaks to my soul! I am complete with this gift! And the gift I have is specific to me! God gave this to ME!
I am a firm believer that God, in his image, created me with these gifts to express myself and to reflect Him. To use them to worship Him. To connect with others using them! He knew my destiny before I took my first breath! And I am on the journey toward the destination!
If you get a chance, listen to my music! Enjoy it! Know where it is coming from! Streaming services these days allow for consumption without buying it. So no excuses! You don't have to buy it! Unless you like it!
My hope is you do like it! My hope is it connects with you! My hope is you feel what I feel with it!
Here is a link to my first release, Summer Breeze
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Picture a scene... dad and daughter driving home from a school based fall festival event. We had just dropped off two of her friends at their homes and were on our way home!
Daughter says... can I have a McDonald's smoothie? Dad agrees and proceeds to the drive-thru!
McDonald's now has these dual drive-thru stations So I pull up to one of the speakers and sit and wait, prepared to order both of my kids a smoothie! I sit there for a little while and a car pulls up in the next station over... places an order and proceeds... then another car pulls up and places an order... and pulls up...
By now... I am furious! I am ranting in the car about the "injustice" of it all! I hear this little blurb from my daughter (under her breath) "you are being very impatient". (I am normally laid-back and patient... but this just got to me for some reason... late in the day/tired/other life stresses/etc... all excuses for improper behavior in this instance!)
So I engaged her... trying to sell her my side of the story! "WE PULLED UP TO ORDER A SMOOTHIE... AND THEY TOOK THOSE OTHER TWO CARS FIRST! IT IS JUST NOT RIGHT!", I ranted! She did not really engage at all... she just sat there... her eyes were saying a lot... but her mouth, silent!
Finally! The voice on the other end of the loudspeaker exclaimed, "Hi, Welcome to McDonald's... May I take your order?". My fury meter is off the charts by now... so I proceeded to educate the person on the other side of the loudspeaker about how long I have sat there and how many cars she took in front of me! In a rather loud... unforgiving voice/tone!
The voice on the other side says "I'm sorry... what can I get for you?". I order the two smoothies for my kids, get the total and pull up behind the cars whose orders were taken in front of me. I get to the window and pay... in this case... I blew a perfect opportunity to ask for forgiveness... but I was still angry!
So as we are sitting there... the car that placed the order in front of me must have ordered something special! It took 5 minutes... and they did not move him up at all! He just sat at the window! So while we are sitting there... I am getting more angry and also I was processing my daughter's statement about my impatience (I remember hearing my wife tell me this during certain times... but it did not sink in). So I started a conversation with Morgan roughly as follows...
"I don't understand why you think I am impatient... we were there first and they took two orders in front of us!" Her response... "it's no big deal... just 5 minutes" Well... I am already upset... so this answer did not sit well with me! I started getting louder and more angry and explaining my case... and my frustration that she did not see this situation my way! She, all the while with an even tone and a calm voice gave this response. "I don't understand why you yelled at her... it is just an extra 5 minutes... she is waiting on other people and maybe made a mistake... do you like when people yell at you for mistakes?" She then continued, "I hate it when people yell at me and they only see their side of the story and what they perceive as my mistake!" I quickly responded with "I wasn't yelling at her... I was merely telling her about my concerns for her handling of the drive through!" She just looked at me with a calm demeanor... and said, "you did not have to yell at her!". I was frustrated and angry... Why does my daughter not see this the way I see it!
We finally proceeded to collect our smoothies and drive home! I am still roasting inside from the issue at the drive thru! Morgan and I exchange small talk... she knows I am upset and proceeds to switch channels on the radio (something she always does... we have a game we play with songs and artists) and lands on a song that always seems to be on while we are in the car together! So she starts nudging me and smiling trying to change my attitude and make me more happy! But my "old man" grouchy attitude was just not going away! I am always right! I am always in control! I hate when something does not go the way I see it! (as I have discovered, these are all related to insecurities I have dealt with for most of my life!)
In any case... a seed was planted!
I eased up as the night went on... but still a little frustrated! The kids went to bed... I finally went to bed (Keep in mind, Barbara is out of town at her annual scrap-booking retreat).
The seed Morgan planted germinated all night long! I woke up at 2:35 AM... wrestling with my actions... reactions... words... Morgan's reactions and more importantly... her words! I went back to sleep and woke up at 4:30 AM... again... more wrestling! Again at 6:15 AM! Wrestling!
All night long I wrestled with this and it finally dawned on me that my daughter was right in her approach and attitude... and I totally failed as a father and an example in front of her!
I realized that the bulk of my elevated frustration and anger was because Morgan was right... and I... not so much! I wanted my way and I was not getting it! I wanted others to see my side of the story and agree! And it was not happening!
[An excerpt from my wrestling episodes during the night]
How can this be! I am her father, who is supposed to be demonstrating Christ-Like values for my kids in all areas of life... and she has out done me here!
Needless to say... some very important reminders surfaced during this event!
The biggest reminder for me... my kids are ALWAYS watching me and my actions!
If I am not willing to allow them (my kids) to speak up and challenge me on my actions and behaviors, I give up the chance to be a better human being! In this case... my daughter taught me more in a 10 minute event than most others have during my life! (Barbara has this ability as well!)
I am grateful that Morgan had the courage to stand up to me, take the position she took and challenge my thinking... my attitude... my interactions... and ultimately, the way I was treating someone! All things I was blinded from because of my frustration and anger!
There are moments when you feel like a complete failure as a parent... then your kids demonstrate a different story!
Thank you baby girl! You are as beautiful inside as you are outside!