Music

Music by Eric

Finally finishing a music project feels great!

It feels like forever since I finished a music project. That’s because it’s been since pre-pandemic since I finished anything, and pandemic time has been an eternity. I do music because it gets something out of my system. If I go too long without creating some sounds, I get antsy. So I’m glad to have finally finished something. Granted, all of this material was recorded pre-Covid. It just took me that long to put it all together — not because it was difficult, but because my head just wasn’t in it. Such has been Covid life. But it’s finished, and I’m happy with it. These are guitar soundscapes and ambient drones, meant for the background or, if you just want to clear your head, for…
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“It’s Nice to Eat the King” is my first new music recording in a year

Recording music was an escape for me. My focus on big, layered sonics, ambiance and sometimes even downright noise came in no small part because I can get lost in all that sound. It’s meditative. Relaxing. Soothing despite the noise. But for some reason, the pandemic has coincided with the longest musical dry spell I’ve experienced in years. Aside from some digital music created last year for a project I will post about another time, I haven’t created anything. Nothing at all. Hell, I went nearly a year without even picking up the guitar, much less writing something on it. Until last night. That’s when a sonic jam accidentally spilled out while testing some equipment. And damn, it felt good to create again. It’s a…
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28 Songs that Changed My Life: Aretha Franklin, “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman” (10 of 28)

Penned by the incredible Carole King and her husband, Gerry Goffin, this is one of those old classics that I’d have scoffed at in my youth. Too much shmaltz, too much romance, too much like the music my mother liked. I wanted something edgy and challenging, right? But a funny thing happened on the way to adulthood: One day I found a cassette of Aretha Franklin’s greatest hits. I have no recollection of where it came from or where I got it, but in a fit of boredom and curiosity, I gave it a spin and decided to pretend I was into it. Then it hit me like a ton of bricks: That voice. That voice. WOW. How had I not sat up and paid…
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28 Songs that Changed My Life: Miles Davis, “So What” (9 of 28)

It would be hard to overstate the impact Miles Davis has had on me, my taste in music, and how I approach music in general. His relentless experimentation, his drive to forge his own path, and the plain ol’ fact that his work is FANTASTIC have ingrained themselves into my life in a deep way. It all started with “So What,” the opening track from his legendary Kind of Blue record, arguably the greatest jazz record of all time. When someone wants to get into instrumental jazz, I always recommend they start here. Listen for the aspects you like — the tinkling piano, the roaring sax solos, the meandering pace — then go check out the artists responsible for those elements (Bill Evans, John Coltrane,…
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28 Songs that Changed My Life: U.T.F.O., “Roxanne, Roxanne” (8 of 28)

Is this one of the great songs in hip hop history? Absolutely not. I can’t lie: it hasn’t aged well. It’s pretty dated. But it legit changed my life. U.T.F.O.’s “Roxanne Roxanne” is probably my earliest rap memory, a song that took over the playground of my small New Jersey town, passed around on mix tapes recorded from the radio and memorized by half the school. There are still lyrics I quote to this day (including for some damn reason, “dermatology is treatment of the skin”). It also sparked the so-called “Roxanne Wars,” a series of songs hitting back and forth at one another that played out as an ongoing story between rival rappers. As a kid, I was mesmerized. This was right out of…
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