For those who want to skip straight to the conclusion: It’s insanely powerful, with some amazing sounds, but has been a bit of a mixed bag with me. Some technical snafus as well as their “No refunds after downloading” policy will likely keep me from buying any other Spitfire Audio products. Now on to the details.Continue reading…
I previously released a silly video in which I sang the outro of “Killing In The Name” by Rage Against the Machine in the style of Michael McDonald. I had a non-zero number of people on the internet say they wanted the full cover. At first, I thought that maybe they think they want the full cover but that in reality it wouldn’t be as funny or hold up for that long. I was wrong.
While I initially had my doubts whether a full cover could live up to a silly 30 second piece of absurdity illustrating what it might sound like if Michael McDonald and Rage Against The Machine were accidentally fused in a transporter accident, as I would be lying in bed trying to sleep, ideas would start coming to me. More and more ideas. Until I knew I had to be the conduit through which this alternate dimension cover came into creation.
I present to you, all 4 minutes and 16 seconds of this glorious abomination. In case you aren’t familiar with the original song, PROFANITY WARNING during the outro. It’s also way more enjoyable if you are familiar with the original.
Just when you probably thought I couldn’t waste my talents on anything sillier, here is my impression of Michael McDonald singing Rage Against The Machine. PROFANITY WARNING.
Nick Thorburn of the band Islands composed the theme song for the wonderful “Ologies” podcast. Here we see some behind the scenes footage of one of the hottest studio musicians that Nick brought in to record.
Nick eventually opted to go instrumental after a falling out with his lyricist. Here’s rare footage of the original vocal track.
Sometimes you get a really silly idea. Then you go to execute that idea and it’s way harder and more involved than you thought, but you’re committed and make it happen. I commit to my absurdity. Music written by Foreigner (Jukebox Hero).
I feel like things that I learned during my younger years are more “sticky.” Songs I haven’t played in 30 years will come right back while on the other hand stuff I’ve learned more recently I have to refresh far more often if I want to remember it.
From the moment this song came out, I loved this band, the guitarist, Vito Bratta, and specifically this song and this solo. It was another major landmark in my guitar journey. Much to my surprise, when I decided on a whim to play this tonight, it took no refreshing. A few passes through it and it was right there, still permanently stored in the mental archives.
For a long time now I’ve battled with the dichotomy of my chosen careers, specifically the acting world. Acting is one of the things that fulfills me like little else. I feel completely in my element, satiated on the deepest spiritual level, and like it is one of my prime purposes for existence. I can’t imagine ever being completely happy without it in my life.
And yet, the reality is that it also causes me great unhappiness for what may be a majority of the time. It fairly constantly makes me feel “not enough,” “not as good as,” and makes me wonder what is wrong with me that I can’t see that keeps people from loving me more.
Luckily, I am a very self-aware person who has traveled far on my perpetual spiritual journey, and I know that those feelings are all ego-based. Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean I have a solution or am able to not feel them. Every day I have the internal argument of thinking that if something causes that much internal strife, then maybe it’s something you should remove from your life, and yet I just can’t imagine doing that and being even remotely happy. It’s a quandary.
So I just try to take my own advice of “Keep your head down and do good work,” and continue working on myself, being present, letting go of ego, and just trying to better tomorrow than I am today. It’s just strange that something can feel so a part of me, so necessary to feed my soul, and yet make me so happy and unhappy simultaneously. She’s a strange mistress, the muse.
We’ve always wanted to do this song by one of our all-time favorite bands, Jellyfish, so we arranged it for a 3 piece and did our power trio version as another Quarantine Socially Distant Performance! Here is Vox Populi covering “The King Is Half-Undressed”!
I decided to arrange this for the trio. This meant there are several parts where there is (at least) one vocal part missing. I also decided to try and do it like we would live so instead of videoing myself doing several guitar parts, or a keyboard part, I just left it with one guitar part performed simultaneously with the vocal (like I would live). Of course, in a studio setting, this is not optimal as my very sensitive vocal mic (a Slate Digital ML-1) picks up the jangling noise from strumming my guitar strings as well, but it’s tolerable.
I love this group and this song and this is definitely one of my favorite musical things that I’ve ever been involved with. Vox Populi is me, David Houston on bass and vocals, and Matt Patterson on drums and vocals.
Matt Patterson, David Houston and I have been threatening to start a power pop cover band. We’ve all been throwing song ideas around and Matt has been throwing out all kinds of great song suggestions that I’ve somehow never heard before. For our first ever virtual performance, he wanted to do “September Gurls” by Big Star, which I’d actually never heard. About 2 hours later I had learned and filmed my parts! We have dubbed ourselves “Vox Populi” and VoxpopuliPowerPop will be our URLs around Cyberspace!
Finally! The project that I’ve been totally immersed in for so many hours over so many days that time has lost all meaning (in a good way…I’ve been smiling and cackling like a mad scientist in his lair).
Among my latest random musical urges, I suddenly, out of nowhere felt like I wanted to cover “Getting Better” by The Beatles and do one of those videos where you video as you record each part. Initially, it was just going to be a solo project, but then I thought how things are always more fun “With A Little Help From My Friends.” So I contacted the biggest Beatles guru I know who also happens to be a multi-talented musician, singer, actor, and all around ridiculously good guy, Darin Murphy to see if he would be the John and Ringo to my Paul and George. He was gracious enough to agree to “Come Together” and I absolutely love the result.
It may be a strange song to cover in these crazy days, but if nothing else I like to think the title alone is just a good goal and hope. And some Beatles always makes things better.