Monthly Archives: February 2014

Alexander Courage

Watching this interview with the late Alexander Courage (the guy who wrote the Star Trek theme) is inspiring and depressing. Inspiring because of his personality and work, depressing because it is so impossible to get a shot in the film word if you don’t live in Los Angeles.

My favourite part is learning that he went to orchestral rehearsals all the time when he got to music school. That’s what I wish I could access. I hate only experimenting with libraries of samples.

Note to self: befriend orchestras and convince them to let me hang out while they rehearse.


Space, The Final Frontier And Pitch Correction

There are two pitch correction softwares that seem to lead the market when recording people need them – Melodyne and Antarres. They are both from Star Trek.

I tried Antarres first (absolutely amazing) but soon an opportunity to buy Melodyne came along so I tried the demo and then I had to buy it. It was also cheaper than Antarres but really what price tag for access to super powers? I spent about $100 – total steal.

There are pitch correction plug ins already in Logic etc. but they aren’t seamless when the pitch problems are more serious. They simply force the correction and that unfortunately sounds very electronic. Kind of surprising it would become a fad, as it did in the 2000s with Kanye West and a zillion others. Lots of fads take me by surprise.

TheĀ  bullnose style nose-ring is probably the most surprising fad of all time (to me). A close second would be pants that hang below one’s asshole. Who’d a thought?

The Star Trek aspect of both Antarres and Melodyne is that if you’re skillful then the listener doesn’t hear anything more than beauty. Think about it, you can capture someone singing or playing a monophonic instrument and then alter the waveforms within certain parameters to rejig the performance in terms of pitch or in terms of what kind of wave generated the original sound. Make them sound completely in tune even if they weren’t in the first place. Like they were correct all along.

Even when it requires a zillion hours of close-up attention and auditioning various stabs to fix it, it is more than worth it. Like patiently using the cloning and stamp tools to repair a torn and crumpled photo after scanning it. Presto your labour might result in realizing a new perfect version.



Look Over There! Dry Ice Factory. Good Place To Get Some Thinking Done.

(Email Feb 1rst)

Hello, I’m a musician from Altona originally, (remember us Bob?) I play drums and I want to be in the best city to help my future. Would you give me your two cents whether I should move to Toronto or Vancouver? Thank you

Dear Bestcitysearcher

Altona, who could forget Altona, the Sunflower Capitol of Manitoba. When you are young and trying to make a living as a musician, generally you can’t avoid having to get a joe-job. Either in a restaurant or a hotel or a gas station – whatever. It might be how you afford rent while you try to establish your musical career. Possibly a few years will pass that way.

I think the same problems will be faced whether you are in Toronto, Vancouver, London, Los Angeles, New York, Paris, Berlin but in those other cities more shit can happen quicker because more power brokers from the music business are there.

Move to Los Angeles, New York, London, Paris or Berlin. Don’t be intimidated by how big those cities are or how expensive. By virtue of your age and circumstance you are probably perfect right now as a dishwasher, production assistant or a pizza delivery driver etc. in all of those cities. While you build you natural networks of the people and friends for the real reason you are there. It might come together it might not but the pay off is more exciting in the bigger smokes. That’s my two cents, forget Toronto and Vancouver.