Asian Turtle Crisis

I publish my own music under this alias.

I’ve been making music since I was a kid. In my early teens, my friends and I formed a band called the Nematodes that covered early punk rock and wrote some crummy originals. I played an awful Tama Swingstar that I could never make sound good. But I got what I could out of it.

We practiced in my basement. I don’t know how my parents dealt with the noise, I know the neighbors didn’t. Every time my friend Rob hit a bass string our dog pissed on my parents white carpet. We played at a party once where a tragedy took place, disbanded and I joined another group called ABOT. We played The Police and The Jam, Devo, U2, B52s. 

After college my friend Abbie and I started the March Hares. We made noise I’d describe as a cross between the early Red Hot Chili Peppers and The Rolling Stones. I played guitar an on Aria Pro II I recently sold. We did have a brush with greatness thing where we got a world famous singer to “jam” with us one day. But other than that highlight the band played live once and disbanded.

Later I played with some friends in the Navin Johnson Trio. Once again we were one and done. But we did have some good tunes.

I began recording in my 20s with a four track tascam and a POD for guitar. At some point I switched to digital, starting with Propellerheads Reason. During Covid I got really into sound design and modular synthesis.

I’ve been releasing songs fairly frequently. I’m a middling musician but it keeps me creative. I write some good stuff. Take a listen.

Recommended Tactics for Voltage Modulation

I’ve been doing sound design for a while. I started messing around with digital synthesizers years ago. During Covid I deep dove into it with vigor. I picked up a bunch of low budget synths and then made the mistake of learning about modular.

Modular synthesis is a a throwback to the early ages of synthesizers. But rather than having a single box with all the components in it, buried under an interface, in modular you pull together individual modules with different affordances in combinations that you like and connect them with small patch cables. 

Synthesizers originally used voltage to send sound, and modulation. With modular you make those connections yourself. The possibilities are endless. As can be the costs.

I started recording my experiments with modular early on and compiled these into Recommended Tactics. I recommend you check it out.

Giggle Analytics

Life got pretty weird during Covid. There was a lot going on. I don’t know how you felt about it. Seems like people weren’t all that shy sharing their feelings on all sorts of things. We dodged strangers on the sidewalks, followed path markings in the grocery aisles, hoarded toilet paper. It was a lot like a Camus novel.

I was helping my company navigate the economic unrest, spending a lot of time looking at customer behavior through session views and analytics. During my free time I was down in the studio writing. The result was Giggle Analytics. At a certain point all you could do was laugh.

Check out Giggle Analytics on SoundCloud

Flat Earth Living for Curved Minds

I’m old enough to remember when facts were a thing. My father and his father were doctors. I studied Biology in college. Back then you could say with confidence 2+2=4 and people generally agreed with you.

At some point something shifted and people started “doing their own research.” All of the sudden those of us who believed basic facts were sheep. Well… I don’t want to get too much into it. Flat Earth Living tells the story well enough.

Check out Sketches: ORD to VQS with the OP-Z on SoundCloud

Sketches: ORD to VQS with the OP-Z

One of my best musical purchases ever was the Teenage Engineering OP-Z. It’s a portable sequencer/synthesizer the size of a tv remote control. I take it everywhere. Nothing makes a long airline flight pass more quickly than writing an album on your OP-Z.

I even blogged about the UI >

My wife Sue and I love to travel. She spent much of her 20s in 30s in Southeast Asia and I just happened to have had a life-changing trip there as well. Whenever we go on longer vacations I bring along the OP-Z and compose while lazing about the pool or traveling from city to city. This travelogue resulted from a week or so in one of our favorite places, Vieques, Puerto Rico.

Check out Sketches: ORD to VQS with the OP-Z on SoundCloud

Sketches: BKK to KL with the OP-Z

Wow this was one of the best trips ever. We flew into Bangkok, and met a bunch of friends at Koh Man in Thailand for a destination wedding reception. Absolutely beautiful and so fun to celebrate with Mike and Rebecca.

Afterwards, Sue and I skipped over to Penang, George Town. Spent some time in Kuala Lumpur and then a few days in an eco thingy in the Cameron Highlands. The trip was just stunning. And inspired me to create some really fun tunes on the OP-Z.

Check out Sketches: Sketches: BKK to KL with the OP-Z on SoundCloud