Hello Again

Hello again! I'm sorry to have been away so long. The blog is looking pretty dusty. Actually it's looking like poo. I'm working on moving the whole outfit over to Word Press. I gave Reclinerland HQ a facelift, which I'm excited about. And the Parks & Recreation site redesign is back on track. A lot has happened in the last six months. Most of it pertains to other areas of my life. In particular, I have completed the graduate program that qualifies me to teach elementary school kids music. I graduate with my Master's degree this summer. This is the same program that had me so busy, that I haven't blogged or webmastered for almost a year! Nor have I seen any of my friends. Man. Well, it's very liberating to be standing at the beginning of a new crossroads. But it's also very daunting. When all the roads are open to you, the trouble becomes deciding which one to pick. Plus, being broke stings more when you have a Master's.

Despite this, I'm working on a new set of songs whose theme I borrowed from Kevin Sampsell's book A Common Pornography. The book is made up of short vignettes about various episodes from his childhood. I felt such a connection to the middle class nostalgia of his vignettes I thought I'd write some little songlets after them. A songlet, so you know, comprises the best, simplest, most melodious, juiciest parts of a song; the stuff that isn't the introduction, the verse, the solo, the tedious instrumental section, or the fade-outs. Why must a song drone on for 3 whole minutes with so much extra gunk? Just give me the catchy parts! Leave out all that fluff and give me the nicest, catchiest melodies in the shortest amount of space. That's a songlet. The term is copyrighted as of...NOW.

The Ideal Home Music Library hit a little snag. Nothing to worry about, it's just that one song has to be re-recorded. I wrote it too high for Kaitlyn Ni Donovan's smoky vocal range, so I've had to knock it down a few steps. I thought about finding someone else to sing it, maybe a soprano, but I don't really want anyone else. This means, however, that I've had to scrape up money for a piano player and some studio time. Well, I've found a piano player who's quite good, and as soon as I can afford it, we're going into the studio to re-record the song. Other than that, the album is so close to being done I can taste it.

The project I'm most excited about, however, is the musical. I was inspired by this music I heard a few months ago by Jacques Brel and Noel Coward. It seemed like the perfect kind of music for the story I've had in my head. I think it's a natural step. I've gone from pop songs to show songs without a musical. I'm going to write a draft of the story, and then I'll be working with Chris Streng to put it all together.

I'd like to give a huge warm thank you to Jason Cohen of Stereophile magazine for his glowing review of the Parks and Recreation album. He extended me the biggest compliment ever by calling me "The thinking man's Steven Merritt." Wow.

Finally, to all of my friends who haven't heard from me in such a long time, I want to extend my most sincere apologies. I've really missed you all. I've been a bad friend. My head is hung low even as I type this.

And that's the news. I'm glad to be back updating the site, and I'm glad you're still here.