MUSIC

BEST OF:

I realize there’s a lot of music here. Frankly I don’t have anywhere else to put it, my attic is full of unsold cd’s. But you’re a busy guy/gal so here’s what 5 songs I would play you if we were at my place having a listening to me party. Not that I do that.


My most recent demos:

Things were getting cluttered so I’ve split the songs I’ve been recording lately into categories:

Rock / Modern Songs

This is where my first passion is…experimenting with newer sounds or just rocking out…it wavers from radio-friendly to dark and noisy.

Songwriter / Americana

when I’m not focused on production and playing I try to actually make some sense lyrically.

Sync/Soundtrack


Not so much songs as background music. A few of these are just other songs remixed without the vocals. “Never” ended up being placed as the theme song for a prime time MSNBC show in 2004 called “American Made”.

Funny Songs


Lately it worries me that I can crank out one of these parodies so much faster than material I actually care about.  The world doesn’t need another Wierd Al and most of these reference inside jokes with friends…and yet, I end up making demo after demo just for a laugh.

I record these at my home studio and on the road. I haven’t made an effort towards a whole album in a while and singles are king now anyways. Do people even buy music anymore? I avoid the ethics by posting all my music for free. I’m usually playing all the instruments here but too many talented musicians have helped out over the years for me to list.  Dates are of the latest mix, not when the songs were written.

 


PAST ALBUMS:


Searching for Satellite

This is the unreleased album from Searching for Satellite, which featured Alex Weeden on guitar, Michael Tarabay on bass, and Justin Pollard on drums…members of Miranda Lambert and Pat Green‘s bands (back before I joined up with Miranda).  Lang Freeman, David Neuhauser, and Chris Tondre also contributed.  For me it was an effort to work with some more successful musicians and try a more mainstream sound than I normally would…and it was the right sound at the right time, coming out as The Fray and Coldplay were at their peak. I’m told it was considered for Grey’s Anatomy but the recording quality didn’t pass muster. I did the best I could with a $0 budget, recording and mixing these on my laptop in 2005 at our houses. Later we tried to take it more seriously by re-mixing songs in the studios of Ken Tondre, Vachik Afghaniantz, Greg Ladanyi, and Don Gehman but I think those mixes are lost for good since nobody would pony-up the money for them to be finalized. We played a summer’s worth of shows around Texas but the band fizzled out in 2006 when Justin lost interest.  There is no link to purchase since nothing was ever finished enough to release, so here’s a download link for the album.

 


Alias Anything

Here is the rock album “This Is Real” from my band Alias Anything, recorded in 2003. Lang Freeman on guitar, Max Harger on bass, Will Farrow and later Ken Tondre on drums. It was recorded at my place without warning the guys that some practice nights would be tracking nights, though some overdubs, production, and mixes were later done at Ken’s studio. It’s not horrible but you can almost hear the budget running out as the album progresses.  After contributing his stellar guitar work Lang moved on to put more time into his band Sounds Under Radio and Max left for law school. I tried to organize a group of talented guys to keep playing the songs live but it was just too different trying to manage all creative decision myself. When I started the song “Make It Happen” I had the dilemma of whether to bring it to Alias Anything or Searching for Satellite…it didn’t make sense to do both bands anymore so I called the guys and officially closed the book. Though I originally had a grand concept for the flow of the album it put some awkwardly recorded and performed material first so here I’ve re-ordered the songs with least-embarrassing first.

 The inspiration for the band name is now on youtube…

click here to buy a CD from cdbaby.com
or just download it right here… my kid doesn’t eat much anyways.

 



Alias Anything

This was my first solo singer/songwriter effort after playing some shows with a backing band of Junior Scott or Alex Weeden on bass, Spencer Gibb on guitar, Stewart Cochran on keys, and Nina Singh or Jason Boling on drums. Recording started in late 2000 when I finally had some money from my day job and decided to invest in my own studio rather than patronize someone else’s. I’d had years of sound engineering classes in college but it wasn’t until Digidesign released their LE products that year that a quality home studio really became affordable – even with a Dell paycheck. However, after recording the initial tracks I stalled out and called on Stephen Doster to help with production. Keith Davis is on guitar, Sam Arnold on Bass, Jordan Lash on drums except for “So Loud” which features J.J. Johnson on drums and Stephen on guitar. Just Enough Light has Stephen on guitar as well, and I’ve included my original demo for the song in which I play guitar. I played everything on Never and Take It Back, the more progressive tunes that led into AA being a rock band. As I finished the album I was booking this new group as Alias Anything and decided to release it under that name. “Never” ended up being placed as the theme song for a prime time MSNBC show in 2004 called “American Made”, which is why there’s the remake where I actually play the drums rather than using the sample from The Mavericks version of Hot Burrito #1.


click here to buy one
from Itunes

 


Dakota Hotel

Ah, the early days (’97/’98). Not a ton of musical direction here…just jamming on that Austin sound (and riding the Dave Matthews wave a bit). My biggest regret about Dakota Hotel is that I didn’t keep dakotahotel.com … which was quickly bought up by the actual dakota hotel after we split up. Troy Wilson is on Bass, Craig Bagby on drums and I’m mostly playing guitar on this album. It was recorded at my place with a consumer sound card pre- pro-tools (I think it was called SAW32). Probably the most notable thing was how the band burned out in a TV-drama-worthy flash: We were playing Steamboat on 6th street with the guitar player we had hired after recording. At loud out his the 60’s Les Paul tipped off the stand and snapped the neck (I still wonder what the cause was, I was closest but I wasn’t going to be bullied into saying I did it). We took it outside and got tackled by six cops mid fist-fight. I went to jail for a couple of days with my ’70 Fender Super still onstage. I tossed my cell phone to the bass player (hard to do with handcuffs) as they tucked me into the paddy wagon with rage-issue guitar player. awkward…and when I used my one phone call to my own phone I was informed that the band was leaving me for him… because they didn’t think I had what it takes. Turns out they had been rehearsing at my space when I went home for the holidays. A few days later they asked if they could buy my tour van since I wouldn’t be needing it. As fate would have it their new band went nowhere and the bass player was so intimidated by rage-guitar-man that he left behind his tour gear rather than pick it up when he quit. It’s a funny story now, but I prefer bands with less drama these days. Good luck with that, right?

 


Crossroads

For nostalgic shits and giggles only…I recorded these in late 1996 when I finally talked Alex Weeden into letting me borrow his Tascam 424 (that’s a 4-track casette tape recorder, kids). By chance he was my neighbor when I was in college after I’d met him auditioning for his band through an ad in the paper (because that’s how you did it before the internet). He plays mandolin on It Was You. It started as Eric Heard‘s songs I was recording and playing on but when he became unavailable I used the time to start recording my own tentative first album. I didn’t own a real drumset so I built an electronic kit! I cut 2″ deep shells from lumber, screwed hoops and heads over them with old t-shirts in the middle, i cut a cracked cymbal in fourths for the brass, made a frame out of plumbing parts from Ace Hardware, and wired piezo elements from Radio Shack to a rented Alesis DM4. I think the drumset was a much more interesting adventure than the recording. It saw many glorious gigs at coffee-houses and something new broke at each one. I miss that stupid drumset.

  • Posted on 28. June 2013