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Bob Elliott
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1/28/2008 10:36:10 PM
How Do I Get My Page to Look Like Steve Ison's?

1/27/2008 7:10:31 PM
When You Think You Made a Beautiful Album



IndieMusicPeople.com

IAC Prime Member

   

Bob Elliott

2/23/2008 7:44:39 AM

I Don't Want to be Carted Off to the "Crazed Fan Department", but...
this Steve Ison album "The Stars Are Never Really Distant," that I have obtained is flat out fantastic. Dripping with melody and pop sense. Is this guy wandering around my childhood picking up all the shattered melodic pieces and putting them back together in new modernish retro set of great songs?

My kids are gonna love this album, and I bet they pass it all along...

in a legal way of course. I'll sure point people this direction.

Amazing accomplishment.


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2/23/2008 8:24:16 AM


I completely agree ! And he's every bit as rare and wonderful a person as his songs.... ( another crazed Steve Ison fan ) anjuli


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RedRobin

2/23/2008 10:02:43 AM


....I don't know if Gaslight District's singer is called Anjuli or Kris, but I've just been smitten as a fan of her song "Golden Rule"!!


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Larz Boah

2/23/2008 10:23:51 AM


is 'Sailng Boat' on the cd? If it's not and you haven't heard
it...U NEED 2...it will take you off into the world of the sea...
one of my favorite subjects. Masterfully played and recorded.
Hope 'Love's Dangerous' is on there too..another Masterpiece IMOP
...co-written with Steve April...another unusual and creative person
here at IAC...that's what I love about this site...so many different
personalities and sounds.


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Hugh Hamilton

2/23/2008 10:31:11 AM


haha - join the Crazed Fan Club, not a problem...


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Jeff Allen Myers

2/23/2008 12:50:48 PM


I will have to listen to more of Mr. Ison...

Its ok to be a crazed fan, seeing that you have the Ying and Yang tatooed on your face, I can see you are a diverse and complex person :)


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edison freeman and the color of fire

2/23/2008 1:27:40 PM


Well count me in to the crazed fan club of Steve Ison. Ison rocks my world!


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2/23/2008 1:37:01 PM


Steve's a fine songwriter, I think my favorite of his is Step In My Direction. I remember finding his music at the old mp3.com and liking it right away. He's a little overrated at IAC though. :)


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2/23/2008 5:46:44 PM


" ....I don't know if Gaslight District's singer is called Anjuli or Kris, but I've just been smitten as a fan of her song "Golden Rule"!! " - Red Robin

Hi Red Robin, and thank you. I'm anjuli the lead singer of Gaslight District and I assure you there has never been a Kris involved in the making of any of our incarnations. There may have been a few Gary's, and Lances, and Mark's, and an occasional Milktoast Snob that was lowering his standards to play with us, but never a Kris. Still, thank you for derailing Steve's crazed fan moment onto me and now I'm going to put it onto Kris and ask you to please stop pretending to be me and start pretending to be Steve Ison you'll get alot further in life !!!


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RedRobin

2/24/2008 5:24:31 AM


....Hi Anjuli - I've just checked out your music and love your "Baby Blue" collab too! You really captured that mood. Your other collab song really showcases your voice's nuances well.

The "Kris" mystery - If you click on your Gaslight IAC Artist's page link to MySpace, you'll find "Kris"!

I'm gonna ask you to Add me as a MySpace Friend so I can network your talents - I've got one very special Friend there who is really into jazz of all sorts (as well as just loving music) - She's not a musician herself.

And if anyone wants to flame me for making MySpace connections on IAC.....Fuck off!! [to borrow one of Larree's terms]


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RedRobin

2/24/2008 5:37:10 AM


....Back on topic, I'm not especially moved by Steve Ison's music generally, BUT....I LOVE "I Know A Good Thing" - Extremely excellent songwriting and voice. Otherwise I just don't go for that typical indie folk under-produced sound. There's no longer any excuse for remaining locked in the bedroom for recording. We can't all like the same music....Well, we can but we don't.


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2/24/2008 2:51:10 PM


Thank you for the heads up on that Red Robin, and yes, please do come and visit me I would like to hear you as well. Also, thank you for being so generously supportive it reveals a good heart in you and if your music has your heart in it it's got to be good.
If I may be indulged one more paragraph or so... In response to what you last posted Red Robin ...

" ....Back on topic, I'm not especially moved by Steve Ison's music generally, BUT....I LOVE "I Know A Good Thing" - Extremely excellent songwriting and voice. Otherwise I just don't go for that typical indie folk under-produced sound. There's no longer any excuse for remaining locked in the bedroom for recording. We can't all like the same music....Well, we can but we don't. "
There is no debating taste. I wouldn't be so arrogant to try, at least I hope not... and while I am a huge Steve Ison fan and for many reasons, but mostly because he is excellent and magical in his craft, I have to say I am a huge fan of great work regardless of whether or not it has refined production or not realizing the subjective nature and relativity of such things.

There are still many excuses and reasons for why many great talents continue to record in the confines of their bedroom abodes, if you will, money being the main one. Not everyone is particularly gifted in the technical aspects of recording, but should they not produce their great work and share it anymore ? We would be missing out on rare and beautiful works hard as they are to find within the sea of sounds infiltrating the Internet and so forth. And I will go so far as to say that I am not a particularly a great fan of everything being so refined and Cloroxed, especially when it is a bullshit song being adorned by impressive production. I love great work. It is about the work after all. It is about the song and if you were to take all of the imagery and hype aspects away... dressed up or down, bathed or unwashed, money or not, the song, the work is what matters... in my opinion. I have had the privilege to create my work in a first rate studio as well a bedroom and I must say I've been more pleased with the bedroom stuff most of the time... of course, we all usually find more pleasure in those places anyway.

Truthfully, I would prefer a studio with good sound rooms and great mics and a kick ass engineer any day over having to wait an hour for the neighbors to stop fighting so I can add my inspired harmony or something like that. It's all rather comical, but it is even more of a testament to someone like Steve Ison's talents that they are able to create such a masterful piece of work without all the licks and tricks. You know, what the hell do you think someone like that could do if he had access to all that? Yes, he would probably drive the engineer crazy.... but he would more than likely accomplish the best of both worlds. I love it raw, and I love it polished....damn... I'm starting to turn myself on here I'd better stop. hee

Production is an art form in and of itself and can make it's own stamp on a song as we have witness the Industry's standard productions do time and time again in mainstream music. The indie spirit must remain loyal to the indie song ! The indie song is simply an orphan that has succeeded in finding a home. And from that home communities develop, and while there is now a respected Indie genre which is now competing with mainstream, our roots, our spirit at it's core comes from the likes of Steve Ison whether one likes his songs or not. That's the beauty of diversity... and long may it live on. We don't have to become mainstream to compete with it, or do we ? ( I don't mean to imply that is what you mean Red Robin, I'm just on a bit of a tangent now ).. We just have to keep doing our work and sharing it and there is no way to control how our work will be received.

Anyway, there is allot of stuff that just plain sucks out there, I admit, and some stuff is


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2/24/2008 4:20:09 PM


First things 1st..I have to compliment IAC on the diversity of the subject matter on the topics page and how a thread can divulge and produce agreement and conflagration with such ease...anyway,I just want to add to the debate and also refer to Red Robins post,especially the piece below...

" ....Back on topic, I'm not especially moved by Steve Ison's music generally, BUT....I LOVE "I Know A Good Thing" - Extremely excellent songwriting and voice. Otherwise I just don't go for that typical indie folk under-produced sound. There's no longer any excuse for remaining locked in the bedroom for recording. We can't all like the same music....Well, we can but we don't. "

I am also a big Steve Ison fan and pretty much for the same reasons as Anjuli and I very much agree with the whole tenet of her reply...I also love good production values but only if the material is decent and i love the lo-fi feel of the committed indie artist but only if there material is any good... most indie artists would love to have a top notch studio at there disposal and a shit hot engineer and producer they could trust with there work, but the real world is that record companies are pretty much dead in the water and not prepared to nurture up and coming artists who may take 3 or 4 albums before they get any pay off from it,if at all,so there is no funding or any other option for the indie songwriter other than the DIY approach....it's a bit ridiculous to say that there is "no excuse for recording in your bedroom",it's a bit like saying Jk Rowling should have written her Harry Potter books {btw,i can't stand Harry Potter} at the British library ! well..she actually wrote her first book in a cafe in Edinburgh because she had no money,was on benifits,couldn't afford to heat her house/couldn't afford to recite it to a secratary and probably had no computer to draft it on...my point is ..if your song/composition/idea is no good and shit to start with then no amount of money or production values or lo-fi aesthetics is going to make the slightest bit of difference....most of my material is recorded in my bedroom ,some recorded at a studio and finished in my bedroom..there are numerous examples of hit songs recorded in bedrooms/front rooms and quite possibly toilets !!!...who cares where it's recorded so long as it's good...you have probebly danced to tunes that have been recorded very close to the duvet...i am getting bored now and my fingers are aching from all this typing and i am going to sleep on my bed in my studio in my flat in my front room...blah blah blah...

LONG LIVE THE BEDROOM RECORDING ARTIST.......

oh and don't forget the back room ,side room, front room ,hallway ,bathroom...and so on and so forth.....

Love to you all...

Ps; listen to my music if you get a chance...it's really rather good ..in my ever so humble opinion...

Brendan X





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SILVERWOODSTUDIO

2/24/2008 5:02:42 PM


---toilets and bathrooms have great natural reverb!!

our song "No more Adolf" one accoustic guitar + one foot tapping on the mike stand + one toilet!! Live ! (then flush!


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SILVERWOODSTUDIO

2/24/2008 5:06:01 PM


----and my child on marracas


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Steve April

2/24/2008 5:46:59 PM


Great posts Anjuli, BrendanX and Silverwdood. A tear comes to my eye. (okay that's gone now.)

May be worth noting that "bedroom artists" include emily dickinson, walt whitman, and franz kafka--no slouches there...and check out "we are the crayons"...Grrrr....


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SILVERWOODSTUDIO

2/24/2008 5:54:15 PM


---hey --I just added that

-------Steve ----I know there must be a story behind that song??


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The Man With No Band

2/24/2008 6:12:31 PM


"There's no longer any excuse for remaining locked in the bedroom for recording. We can't all like the same music"....

What a holier than though attitude ! ... I happen to like recording in my bedroom ... and .... I don't need to make any excuse for it ! .... if you don't like it, that is your business, just don't act like those of us that record in our bedrooms should find somewhere to hide ... I'm proud of what I do and I couldn't care less about people that don't have a clue about what making music is all about ....

Back on topic .... Steve's got some GREAT stuff !


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RedRobin

2/24/2008 11:59:34 PM


Sam - a 'holier than thou' attitude is EXACTLY what some narrow minded people who refuse to come out of their bedrooms, have. I wasn't suggesting you can't create music in your bedroom but only that there is a world outside AS WELL and there's no need for what can only be described as inverted snobbery.

Surely you're not saying that the only people who "have a clue about what making music is all about" do so in the bedroom, are you?

I repeat: "We can't all like the same music" and on topic, I like only some of Steve Ison's. Computer technology now enables richer sounding production, which of course is not a prerequisite for good music but I detect some inverted snobbery.

:)


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The Man With No Band

2/25/2008 12:28:11 AM


Red Robin ... Surely you're not saying that the only people who "have a clue about what making music is all about" do so in the bedroom, are you?
Absolutely not !
Music is an art and a gift that can be done in any manner of ways .... "INCLUDING" the bedroom ... your statement implies that I'm living in the dark ages because I record in my bedroom and that is only YOUR opinion ... People that have a clue about making music realize that making music isn't about production values, it isn't about doing what everyone thinks you should do, it isn't about impressing anyone ....
It's about making music for the joy of making music period.

I don't have much money and do to circumstances that you probably could never grasp I have little chances of ever obtaining much.
But what I do have is music and just because I'm not able to do anything other than my bedroom recordings doesn't mean that I can't call someone on the kind of statement you made.

I'll record in my bedroom probably until the day that I die and I will enjoy doing so ... regardless of what you or anyone else thinks ... and I will get more enjoyment from it than you could ever imagine ... I don't begrudge anyone for using whatever methods they see fit to make music .... but Don't belittle my way ... you think there are not excuses ? Try living a day in my world of which you don't know a damned thing about. .....
I'm lucky to wake up everyday and function at all ... so don't you dare pass judgement and put everyone under the same umbrella
Have a good day....


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2/25/2008 12:34:03 AM


Some of the best music I've heard in my life was recorded in very closed-in circumstances. Maybe the best indie artist I've ever heard, in fact, did small demos and made more great songs in a year than any of us, and maybe any artist ever in the history of the world. She was told that her work wasn't good enough but when she moved to a bigger situation, the heart of her music was no longer there. She became frustrated and doesn't even have an Email address now, she is simply not online.

Another phenomenal artist is the most prolific songwriter on IAC at the present time. She too has a small set up but I don't care what anyone's lofty standards are, I will take 30 quality songs in a year in any form over 2 pristinely perfect AND great songs. Remember when we used to follow artists? That doesn't happen much because starting with the Eagles The Long Run in the late 70s, the output of all the bands we love slowed to a tiny fizzle where they put out 1 new record every 3 years. Some artists here at IAC who I often see praised over the top came out with 1 new song all year long. Home recording allows us to see artists growing into their greatness. If you want to let your producer "mixer ears" turn you into a very picky eater, that's your prerogative. The artists I love the most are constantly at their craft. The Beatles even when they started to take extended time between their albums still popped em out every 7 months and Elton John would be putting out 2 new ones a year for a long stretch. These kind of artists exist in this culture and they don't get enough credit because while some are promoting one song for months and months, others are simply spending that same time working on new music.

I don't begrudge artists with great production, even those that use the expensive superloud mastering because imo, very few push it too hard that I can't enjoy the song. I don't resent having to adjust the volume a bit because I always say about FT songs, crank em up. :) To me the overdone tracks are often in the hiphop genre where they compress to the point of serious distortion.

Anyway everybody has their own thang, but indie needs to always remain a world where everybody gets to show up at the party.


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RedRobin

2/25/2008 5:26:58 AM


Sam - You're misinterpreting my words! I am NOT against people recording wherever they like! Guess where I have just returned from? - A session in literally a spare bedroom at ElijahWolf's house, just straight into a laptop without effects. He's written a song and imagined a flute to play a simple riff part.

What I do read a lot of here and don't like, is an attitude which implies that true indie music can only be created in a bedroom (or similar) with basic equipment and that anything more polished is rubbish - Some is and some isn't. I interpret that as a form of inverted snobbery. I know someone who is registered on IAC but isn't at all impressed by such attitudes and they saw the same without me pointing it out. I wonder how many others are registered here who limit their involvement because of such a strong 'us versus them' mentality and undercurrent.

At times there's far too much flag waving and insecure ranting about mainstream music on IAC. Creative independence is extremely important and being independent is something to be proud of, but, just get on and make music.

I am not against you, Sam or anyone else, recording in your bedroom. I'm not belittling you either - What does it matter to me what or where you create music? I record my own music both at home and at a studio, and if I didn't have free studio access I'd only be recording at home in my living room. I'm not "passing judgement" on you, Sam, but I very much dare to express an opinion and openly and honestly offer my thoughts for discussion. And of course you and anyone else is free to disagree. I can't help it if it annoys you - That's up to you.

Thanks, I'm having a good day as usual and hope you are too :).


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fly on the wall

2/25/2008 6:00:42 AM


"At times there's far too much flag waving and insecure ranting about mainstream music on IAC."

Who are you calling insecure, you contrarian? Of course indies resent the mainstream. So many of those songs sound the same, are totally uninspired while here we get to hear far superior music on a daily basis. If you're having such a good day why all the passive aggressiveness? Maybe you should go put your music on a mainstream site since you defend them so much. (yes I know they wouldn't accept your music but that's my point exactly, don't diss your own people, only a dork does that). What do you do in your spare time when you're not here defending the mainstream, let me guess.

* You go to the Boston Red Sox homepage and root for the Yankees.

* You go to Greenpeace and say global warning is a hoax.

* You go to Larree's page and post on the tagboard "no swearing"

* You go to the Food Channel blog and write diet tips.

* You go to the Shaq website and praise Koby

* You go out to eat at Red Lobster and order a hamburger.

Hey you said feel free to disagree. :~D


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RedRobin

2/25/2008 6:13:57 AM


It's very simple, fly - There's good and bad mainstream and there's good and bad indie music. There always has been and always will be music which some like and others don't, in all genres of music.

I'm proud to be an independent but I'm not against the mainstream. Being independent doesn't mean I can't challenge/support/diss whoever I like. Being independent doesn't oblige me to align myself with everyone else who is independent. If our views are different, it really doesn't matter.


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Hop On Pop

2/25/2008 6:20:24 AM


Oh yeah, I bought that about a year ago and I, also love it to death.
As does my wife.
As do my kids.

Some pretty damn wonderful songsmithing on there.


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Kevin White

2/25/2008 6:24:43 AM


lol ...

It should be mentioned that the space where recording occurs ... doesn't matter ... so long as it's not sonically inferior.

A bedroom is a room, like any other room in any other place.

For me, too, because I collaborate with musicians worldwide over the internet, I don't have any control over what rooms are where tracks are recorded.

But it's all good ... if the sounds coming out of whatever rooms, basements, garages etc ... are good.

The point is ... my bedroom (well it's not really a bedroom per se, it's a studio nook) ... via the net ... is networked globally, and as such is directly connected to incredible musicians I'd not have had the privilege of playing with in any other circumstance.

If you listen to my work, you're hearing a global network of musicians interact w/o ever playing in the same room together -- or ever even speaking to each other outside of email and/or chatting like this.

Yet -- because of that -- my little space ain't so little.

It should be mentioned though, that one must be cautious when recording sounds in a bedroom.

For there are noises that occur there that NO ONE probably wants broadcast over the net.

:-D

Best,

Kev-


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RedRobin

2/25/2008 7:01:23 AM


Kev - Are you telling us you fart a lot!? LOL

You're absolutely right - There may be some 'bedrooms' which are perfect for recording. But the term was being used to describe an attitude rather than literally.


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Kevin White

2/25/2008 7:17:56 AM


Not particularly flatulent ...

My snoring otoh, is legendary.

:-D

Kev-


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2/25/2008 2:18:50 PM


"There's no longer any excuse for remaining locked in the bedroom for recording. We can't all like the same music".... -Red Robin

That is the statement that you said. If you have been misunderstood it is of your own doing. It is quite clear if one reads through all of the threads on this particular blog that not one person has any issue with how you make your music Red Robin, not even Sam. And while it is true we can't all like the same music, I don't think anyone had any issue with you in regards to what you like or dislike. You made the above statement, this blog has addressed it as have you.

In addition, It saddens me that a crazed fan can't post a blog praising the object of his admiration, that being Steve Ison in this case... without someone chiming in as to why Steve Ison isn't so great. You know, why ? Why can't he just have his moment... is something like that really debatable ? It's just an awesome and sweet post really, whether you like Steve Ison or not. Still, the negative objectives have lead to an interesting blog so there you have it. I wish we could be happy for each other when we see each other shine regardless of whether or not we feel that person deserves such praise. Anyway...

Wishing you all the best and if your fans should ever praise you I hope you all get to bask in the light of it's glow... it's a beautiful thing. -anjuli


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RedRobin

2/25/2008 3:04:51 PM


Anjuli - If I have somehow detracted from Steve Ison's greatness in the eyes of many, I apologise. I was just being very honest in my (relatively unimportant) opinions that I love some of his music but not all. Is this thread only meant to be for words of adoration only? - If so, I didn't realise and perhaps I should have realised from the title.

Steve Ison is the one who wrote: "I'm a solo bedroom recording artist recording on an 8 track" and my comment was only meant as a suggestion that there's life outside that recording environment. I took the opportunity to express an opinion that I don't personally agree with an attitude which glorifies "bedroom recording" above all else. Perhaps that's not exactly Steve Ison's attitude anyway. As others have said, what's more important is the quality of the music rather than literally where it's recorded.

Anyway, I agree that it has led to an interesting discussion whatever any differences of opinion there may be.

Nite nite :)


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Steve Ison

2/25/2008 3:22:26 PM


Woh..I come back from 2 days offline to see this!
Firstly,many thanks to Bob for such a wonderful post-and to everyone else for the kind comments on my music..Very sincerely appreciated..:)

Without wanting to get too back-slappy,i love Bobs album 'Simple Machine' -with which i swapped- too and have been playing it loads.Very distinct,lovingly crafted (and far more professional sounding than mine lol) n filled with moody,atmospheric gems like the brilliant Orange Lane


I'm glad you like 'I Know A Good Thing' Red Robin and i gotta thank you for bringing up your 'bedroom' point as its stimulated such a range of insightful and intelligent posts n responses....

No-one here's saying that they're against 'well-produced' music at all(just take a look at my 'Brilliant Pop Songs' thread(s) which is basically ALL signed artists for my credentials on that lol)-they're just against the dreadfully generic,mediocre songs that take you for a ride on it..

However there's an obvious undercurrent to comments like 'there's no excuse for recording in your bedroom anymore' that implies that you can't really appreciate music UNLESS its recorded to an industry-defined 'professional' kinda standard..With that you've gotta ask the question..Who's really being 'open-minded' and who,on the other hand,is showing a certain corporate- influenced 'snobbery'?

Don't worry tho-You're certainly not alone in your attitude.With all the computer gear,sequencers,pitch normalisers,beat normalisers and god knows what else now available,people are getting more sound n production conscious than they've ever been before..
Altho these things are definitely a help to many artists,there's an insidious side-effect as Joe Publics ears are gradually made accustomed to expecting 'perfect' sounding music....Nothing but industrial-efficient metrone-sync rythms n X Factor/American Idol spot-on-the-note it seems will do anymore.

Finely tuned ears are quick to spot the faintest human imperfection in pitching,the slightest movement off the all important,all pervading 'groove'..

Judging from sites like Slice-The Pie (which i've railed against here before) ,that microscopic attention to detail dosn't -unfortunately- extend to the music being written beneath the perfect sound..
The songs that win there are (to my ears) uniformly musically dull-witted,generic and unmemorable, with chord progressions you can usually see coming from a mile away.

An example of the gradually progressing 'perfection' obsession is my song 'Step In My Direction' (thanks FT),i entered there....At least a 1/3rd of the comments are saying either i'm singing out of tune or the chords are 'wrong'.

4 years ago when i posted it on GB-to the same number of reviews- i had no comments that mentioned either of those things.The chordal voicings are abit unusual, admitedly (tho not extreme),but it seems that even a slight musical-clash is no longer tolerated by most people in the blanded out modern X-Factor world...

Another insidious thing showing up in the reviews i got is the complete absence of IMAGINATION in relating to the music.Not one of the people reviewing refered either to the mood,vibe atmosphere-or how the song affected them personally....Everything was out of tune this,nice/bad guitar sound that-all neatly efficient producer/sound engineer stuff..

The richly imaginative/de_scriptive reviews that express an inner life given by people like Anjuli and Larry here are sadly very rare-and becoming rarer.

What sort of music can you expect to be created by people who only seem able to see the shiny(or scratchy!) surface-and experience music thru its component parts? 'great bass sound!' 'Lovely mix!' 'Too much stereo seperation' etc..

Is it gonna be interesting? individual? imaginative?...soulful?

Or is it gonna be boring n generic,but sound 'perfect'......


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Steve Ison

2/25/2008 4:13:41 PM


"There are still many excuses and reasons for why many great talents continue to record in the confines of their bedroom abodes, if you will, money being the main one. Not everyone is particularly gifted in the technical aspects of recording, but should they not produce their great work and share it anymore ? We would be missing out on rare and beautiful works hard as they are to find within the sea of sounds infiltrating the Internet and so forth. And I will go so far as to say that I am not a particularly a great fan of everything being so refined and Cloroxed, especially when it is a bullshit song being adorned by impressive production. I love great work. It is about the work after all. It is about the song and if you were to take all of the imagery and hype aspects away... dressed up or down, bathed or unwashed, money or not, the song, the work is what matters"

Yeh,beautifully put Anjuli :)
My old 8 track has finally broken,so i'm going to learn Cubase this year

I love songwriting and arranging,but the technical aspects of sound-engineering i don't really enjoy at all-and have little natural skill at-but like Brendan said-no-one else is gonna do it! lol so you've gotta be DIY...

I agree that there's some things i like sounding pro-and some things i like sounding raw-i can never fully make up my mind.There's a certain kinda suffocating 'slickness' in alot of modern music tho i certainly don't aspire toward..

I,like you really wish more people were able to open themselves to hear so much wonderfully creative indie music on places like this that dosn't necessarily pass the industry-defined 'radio-ready' test..
Those who treat the music as an interchangeable lifestyle accessory,or purely as a surface sonic experience for their hifi sadly probably never will tho..


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Steve Ison

2/25/2008 4:23:14 PM


"is 'Sailng Boat' on the cd? If it's not and you haven't heard
it...U NEED 2...it will take you off into the world of the sea...
one of my favorite subjects. Masterfully played and recorded.
Hope 'Love's Dangerous' is on there too..another Masterpiece IMOP
...co-written with Steve April...another unusual and creative person
here at IAC..."

Thanks for the kind words Larry,appreciated :)

Yeh,Sailingboat is on the CD,tho Love's Dangerous' isn't.That should be on another CD in some form or another later this year,hopefully-There's a few Steve April co-written songs i've recorded that still need mixing...


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RedRobin

2/25/2008 4:38:20 PM


Steve - I was hoping you'd come along and post a response.

Yes, as technology advances it opens our ears to becoming much more aware of the sonic detail. It's never ever perfect though and what is 'perfect' anyway? Something recorded in a bedroom might be 'perfect'. We've each got our own ideas about what we think is perfect anyway.

I use Apple's Logic but I think you'll find that Cubase may change what you listen out for as you create.

In my opinion, what sounds perfectly arranged, mixed, mastered etc etc, can still be interesting, individual, imaginative, and soulful. 'Perfect' doesn't always mean it's boring and generic.

I'm simply anti an 'Us versus Them' attitude whoever Us or Them might be - I'd rather just enjoy hearing and creating music whatever the source. Why on earth do some people think I'm anti people using their bedrooms? I'm only inclined to challenge the idea that it's somehow superior to creating/recording music in any other way.

A nicely balanced strong fat bass sound usually does make me feel really good and wanting to dance. My taste in music is for that which comes from the heart rather than the head.


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2/25/2008 6:10:48 PM


Red Robin, and with all due respect, the perfect production sound is not the underdog here...it's won. We are the minority not the majority, you know? We are vast becoming Dinosaurs, get it ? Do you really think we'd deliberately shun top notch studio capabilities so we can fluster about in our isolated pervy little bedrooms so we can rage against those of you who dare to venture outside your abodes into the real scary and stimulating recording environments ? If we could afford it do you think we'd rather be stumbling our way through all the technical tedium when we'd rather just focus on the song which is at the heart of what we are doing ? I hate to quote myself but I'm just gonna... "I don't hold it against any song whether it has great production or not, same as I don't hold popularity or obscurity against a tune. " It is diversity, imagination, soul, craft, substance, magic itself we are fighting for... and a place to be heard regardless of where or how our voices were recorded, and by whom. OK, so no one is inverting any snobbery or any of that. That's like accusing The Little Match Girl of being a snob while she peeks through the window at the rich eating their scrumptious feast ! Is it her fault she is not invited to the table ? They wouldn't even buy one match from her. But I digress... ( I do that allot ) It is obvious that great production and superb engineering is much preferred long as it is a tool to serve the song and not the other way around, in fact, it goes both ways. This is clearly stated in this blog time and time again...

We all got the tools we got to do our work. It's what we have to work with, and we use what we have and we create because we have something within us that demands it and it is a very old story since the beginning of time, it's just the tools that change over time. First and foremost we are storytellers and this is important to continue. Film is now the grand storyteller of our time but cannot replace the primal need for music. And if only those that have access to the top notch studios are heard, then slavery and poverty have no hope of ever being free. What do you think the blues were all about ? It was a triumph over oppression...should we defend the masters and the gatekeepers? Should we join em' if we can't beat em' ?There is allot of intriguing literature about the fallout of slavery and how it ties into the music industry of today one such a book is Blood Rituals: Consequences of Slavery in Two American Centuries. This issue runs deeper than spit and shine you know. We can't all be assimilated... and we are not implying that those with mastered tracks are. Please let us speak without paraphrasing or taking things out of context. Kate Bush put out a song 'Experiment' years ago that is quite poignant in today's mainstream music.

Steve, thank you for showing up... it's like Daddy's home yay get out the cake !!!!! hee

Red Robin, I am truly grateful to you for inspiring this continued topic. Regardless of our differences, I don't feel you are intending any harm, and we all have times when we use our words recklessly. Sometimes what we mean in our hearts don't quite form in our sentences, and I am certainly guilty at many times in my life of such things. I wish you all the best and you as well Red Robin, you have been kind to me and at least you are here trying to understand like the rest of us. And I forgive you for not being a huge Steve Ison fan... ha ha... but I skipped round England jumped in leaves played him over and over again through terrible turbulence and found his magic working it's way up through the bubbles of my soul and he is an artist I treasure and I feel if the world was in balance he would have not had to sit in his bedroom recording he would have had access to the big rooms you know ? But that never stopped him from making an amazing album.

We crazed fans love to see the object of our fan-dome get their props... I think everyone is li


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Bob Elliott

2/25/2008 6:45:58 PM


Well, I think bedroom recording (something I am well steeped in) has some major hinderances, and I posted about them in a new thread here

http://iacmusic.com/blog.aspx?id=8956&TopicID=27797

But whatever, this is a great album, and on much of it I was wondering where he records because I couldn't imagine it being done in a bedroom, but I guess he's just good at it.

"If I Met You Again," "Lou Reed," "Girl on a Train...." what's not to like?

If I Met You Again is just too cool with the build ups and break downs and the cool bass. All those colorful harmonies, but here's the thing, people: hooks...this guy has hooks that stick. And Lou Reed's lyrics are just cool...

"Talked about it..'bout your brand new verse-a shade too long..
Dosn't matter what you claim you're now-Keep your eyes on the road!
The newspaper said your day's long gone-don't think about that..."

It's the real deal, Mon.
While we're having such fun tonight....


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edison freeman and the color of fire

2/25/2008 9:40:34 PM


Ahh...bedroom recording. Many of us do it because there simply isn't any other place we CAN. Of the 5 tunes I posted on MP3.com back in 2002, One (the blue thing) was recorded in a professional studio in San Diego CA 5 years earlier, but the other 4 were done in the confines of a 10x11 bedroom with a slightly vaulted ceiling. Almost half of that room was taken up by a full on drumset with 2 floor toms. And I recorded those drums playing very hard, cause it was the only way I knew how at the time. In fact, it's still my preference. "5 miles past nowhere" was done after my wife said, "go ahead and leave your drums set up in the living room, the kids are gone"; I built a professional quality studio about a year and a half later, when my "ship came in". That took altogether about 70,000 dollars of my hard earned life savings, but hey, I'm a believer...

2 of those songs done in that bedroom remain my favorites...even in the production quality. I seriously doubt I can beat the energy of "the cycle" or "my experience". But I still have to try.

I LOVE the concept of bedroom recording because it marks the spot where the art of recording became DEMOCRATIZED, and stopped being the exclusive priveledge of those with great amounts of money.

And I think Mr Ison (yes, back to Steve, he WAS the topic of this thread) is testimony to the fact that better songs are coming out of bedrooms than out of multimillion dollar recording plants today.

I applaud heartily the bedroom recordist!


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RedRobin

2/25/2008 11:37:35 PM


....WOW!! This has turned into quite a thread!

A special Thanx to Anjuli for understanding in a way that only women seem to be able to do. I expect it won't be the first time my words unintentionally cause something to kick off, but it's a good testament to this pipeline that most people are able to stay calm and debate their points of view. Sorry if I upset you, Sam - It wasn't a dig at bedroom recording as such.

I've learnt something from this thread and hope that others have too. :)


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Steve Ison

2/26/2008 3:11:19 PM


"But whatever, this is a great album, and on much of it I was wondering where he records because I couldn't imagine it being done in a bedroom, but I guess he's just good at it"

Many thanks for that Bob-Its a real joy for me that you're enjoying the album so much :)
I'm not a good sound-engineer at all,but do put alot of effort into thinking of the dramatic impact of shifting dynamics in a song.

I had the same machine for 10 years-so even tho it was very limited i got used to what the it could do-and using the reverbs/delays etc

I just had my first lesson today on Cubase..My god,how clunky n clumbsy is having to use a mouse for doing everything..
It feels so much more imprisoning and constricting than using knobs..

I don't have a good vibe for it at all at the moment-but am determined to stick at it..


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RedRobin

2/26/2008 4:30:19 PM


Steve - Cubase is somewhat clunky but you can buy small hardware control surfaces like the AlphaTrack which give you tactile knobs and slider control of the software. The problem is that it all costs money!

Think of it as just another musical instrument and the vibe may become more positive. You've already said you like shifting dynamics etc and Cubase/Logic can help that happen.

I hope this helps,
Robin


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Bob Elliott

2/26/2008 4:37:56 PM


I'm moving the other way. I've been on the 16 track Roland 1680 for about 7 years, but I finally bought an analog mixing board and a few outboard compressors. The mixing board is a mixwizard 12:2 by allen and heath, and there are two sweeps on every channel of the eq, so now there are dials I can reach out and touch for every single parameter, and I've found I am way better when working with dedicated dials. I also bought a programmer for my 1980's analog synth, and now there is a separate dial for every single programming parameter, and it took me one hour to get the sounds I'd wanted for more than a decade.

I don't see myself moving much to a mouse. I gotta be able to get my hands easily on every parameter.

But combos can work. The 1680 is a digital machine, and I'm using it with an analog mix board. Hell, midi controllors that gave separate control on parameters would be good, too. I just want dedicated dials, and I just got that going for the mixing stage of that last album. I haven't even recorded stuff with this gear, but it made all the difference in the mix.


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Hugh Hamilton

2/26/2008 7:32:53 PM


Checking back in on this thread - have been lurking quietly, as I swore off IAC politics for my new year resolution (lol)...

I use a Roland VS2480, Bob...just happen to have written about it on Kevin's "what do you use" blog...got some outboard pres and compressors in 2007, and am just now rearranging the 'studio' and about to implement a patchbay. I agree, it's great to have some real faders - but I use a mouse a fair amount too, which I don't mind because it's quick and minimizes the number of controls on the unit. Mostly it's the faders I like having, for mixing more than anything else.

Good luck with the new software, Steve!

Nice to see you back, Anjuli!


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