Ubuntu studio, domestic auralities, and imaginary audiences

Fourteen months after the switch[1], I am slowly getting MIDI and synths jack’d up in Ubuntu Studio, much to the delight of my highly musical daughter. Last night we mucked about with organs and a cool DX-7ish emulator. Methinks FM tympanies need a distortion pedal.

This has been a truly interesting past month, in which she and I have been working on musical projects, including learning ukelele (she’s got three chords now, but needs to work on pressing harder…starting lessons in January up the street, thanks to mum), but also writing songs.

Two nights ago we serenaded a friend of mine with a humorous song we wrote. In this song, we speculatively describe a day in his life, only backwards. In other words, he goes to bed, drives home, goes to work, and gets up in the morning. He drives a windup car, with a giant key in the back (thanks, Golden Girls). She insisted on telling the story backwards.

She’s also written her own song, entitled “Love Is Near”. I helped her adapt it into two different versions: one serene, one spooky (basically the minor and diminished 5th chord version of her original).

Oh, and yesterday we decided to practice our songs along with samples of audiences cheering (courtesy of freesound.org). This is something of a reprise of a practice I used to get into when I first started playing in bands, at age 12, wherein I would take audience noises off a concert album, loop it, and overdub it between the songs on the tape recordings of my band’s poorly attended gigs. Stadium audiences, even imaginary ones, can transform the way you think about your music. The daughter seems to agree.

This is all very fun. The apartment is full of sounds.

[1] I ditched apple for Linux/Android in Fall 2011, in other words.