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Topic: Treatise On The Walls

  1. #1

    Treatise On The Walls

    Treatise On The Walls - https://app.box.com/s/87aosisr7z1rn6ijwhhyuthx7i6wymcp

    Treatise on the Walls

    Warning this is 36 minutes long.. This took 10 months to accomplish. A lot of 18 hour days on it, but at the end, I couldn’t handle more than 4 hours at a time. I finished last spring. I had never spent this much time on a piece previously.

    I took two breaks to write something else, because I had reached the point of ‘being over it’. So if you’re gonna listen, get comfortable.. It’s a bit psychedelic, has a couple of songs, a fair amount of sound design, and narration/ prose in it. I originally did a version of Pink Floyd’s ‘Another Brick in the Wall’..

    I read how Pink Floyd started as a ‘jam band’ recording long pieces, cutting/editing together sections. .. Another Brick was a short section in their Wall album, never meant to be a single. At first Pink Floyd refused to release Another Brick as a single but Michael Kamen, the well established writer, producer, movie scorer (RIP) , took a short section of the original tracks. added orchestral parts, and the kids singing and and edited/lengthened it into a ’single’..

    I decided to use “Another Brick’ as the foundation for my own jam. I wrote a few pages of dialog, and had two singers narrate it, they also sang the vocals, Jeanne Otis, and Larry Marshal. I wrote out several pages of dialog, had 3 different people recite it.. and cut/pasted together the narrative part of it. Then I ad-libbed musical parts to sit with the vocals.

    A lot of exploration, editing.. A lot of creating parts, only to later, delete them, as I tried to make the pice ‘whole’ and not dis-jointed. Although it is one long piece. I just started taking sections, and redoing parts, adding, cutting/pasting/sliding parts around.. One of the vocals at 21 minutes, was off a sample record.. I laid that into the piece, and redid music/sound design around it.

    I include some ‘sound design’ into it, because that has been a re-newed fascination for me.. So if you’re gonna listen, get a glass of wine, put that recliner back to the ‘relax position’ or ‘sub-light speed’.

    I actually had a lot of fun doing this, and discovered a lot about myself and music. It was also a chance for me ‘not to pay attention to all the music rules floating around in my head.. I just let my imagination go, A lot of it is improvisation, with supporting parts written and added later, for coherency.

    Due to the length, it became very complex. I had to write a lot of automation into the tracks. (well over 100 tracks - everything on it’s own track, so I could find things). The project got corrupted twice. and I had to use Logic Pro’s ‘Import feature’ into a new project twice to get it to functionality again.

  2. #2

    Re: Treatise On The Walls


    With interest, I've listened through the whole recording. As you know it is not really my musical world, but I constantly fell into sonic surprises. Instruments constantly moving from back to front, from left to right, echoing voices swinging around, all kinds of ambiences mixed up... This must have been a huge job! It's a typical example of decent studio work with short samples composed (glued together) to a most bewildering unity. The quality is outstanding and perfectly clear, which proves that you are an experienced studio master. That knowledge may come in handy while mixing classical scores! But of course the techniques will be totally different. All instruments have a more or less fixed place in the vertical and horizontal setting on a stage.

    One thing I didn't quite get: is there some message hidden in the cited texts? Is there an overall meaning hidden in the piece? I heard quite often the words "The wall"... "Just another brick in the wall" (Pink Floyd?)...

    Wonderful com-position* (in the most literal meaning)! Nice to hear also a totally different side of the musical spectrum on this marvellous forum!

    * componere in Latin means: putting together, bringing to unity, unify


  3. #3

    Re: Treatise On The Walls

    Interesting... actually I suppose that being the copyrighted material included you can't make any professional/commercial use of this work without permission... then, well, was it just for fun really?!?

    Anyway impressive creative effort, that's why I was wondering what's the intended purpose.

  4. #4

    Re: Treatise On The Walls

    Thanx guys.. I know this piece is kinda 'off the wall'.. I was wondering if it was too out there for folks here?.. This was an experiment, for me, in letting my imagination go. also making a long piece. taking a wide assortment of ideas, and merging them into one piece. Yes, a ton of automation, effects.. Also I'm enjoying the idea of making something different (at least for me), and although it is musical, I like that it kind of sways outside the normal bounds at certain points.

    I really just make music to make music at this point of my life. not any real other purpose. Of course I'm pleased when people like it.. but this piece particularly was for my own exploration. Also homework, to create some extended totally original long works, in the future

    I could if i want easily get a license to use 'another brick'.. You just pay a license, you really don't need the writer's permission. All my life I've done music for other people, projects, with goals etc. Now since retired, I do it primarily to please and explore my own self.. I'm kinda looking for something different too.. I always leaned towards pop/rock stuff. Kinda too late in the game for me to go 'classical' although there are certain aspects that fascinate me. And pop/rock music while valid (as is any kind of music).. I'm trying move it into something different, than what I hear, and what I've done before.

    The narration says a few different things about walls, the different definitions, and functions of a wall, kinds of walls, Mental, emotional, physical walls. Wall can define something, but can also keep something out.

    But in reality my narration does not have a lot to do with Pink Floyd's 'After all it's just another brick in the wall' I like most a fair amount of Pink Floyd's lyrics, obtuse, and esoteric. The use of the children singing was totally brilliant, and really made the song in my opinion. .. I had about 3 pages of narration, and then cut/up/spliced words and phrases together, so the meaning becomes pretty obtuse (or non existent).. Similar to David Bowie's cut-re-arrange the lyrics (and he took the idea from some one else). Part of it was just to have a human voice element in it to ground the piece. When your brain hears 'word data', it does it's best to make sense or draw meaning from them..

  5. #5
    Senior Member fastlane's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Shelton, Washington State

    Re: Treatise On The Walls

    I listened to this twice. It has quite exquisite over-all production-just superb. I have mixed feelings about it from the perspective of a casual listener. Your music creates a wonderful sound world with a dream like atmosphere and nice thoughts. I really liked the first part with the melody, nice percussion, guitar and such. For me, it was probably too long to easily maintain my interest if I were a casual listener, especially toward the end. I was thinking this could work well as a multi-media effort using pictures and video and, or live action. I have heard shorter versions of longer works like this for a more commercial product.

    My first introduction to Pink Floyd was listening to select cuts provided by my “guide” from their first album while I was tripping. It made quite an impression on me, at least temporarily. Syd Barret was the main creative force of the band at that time but he would soon secumb to mental illness. Later, they released Dark Side Of The Moon, which I thought was really an amazing album. After that I sort of lost interest in them, still hearing some of their music but not purchasing their albums. Back then I never stuck with a band or artist very long as it seemed that many of them would quickly peak artistically and then sort of coast for various reasons.

    I am looking forward to listening to more of your music!


  6. #6

    Re: Treatise On The Walls

    In the 60's there was a club called 'The Boston Tea Party'.. Every weekend they would have the newest and best unknown English Bands for like $3.00.. I saw a lot of bands that quickly became famous.. Unfortunately Pink Floyd did not play there.

    But I worked for years with a video artist, who was Pink Floyd's first visual man for their concerts.. Bob Lewis.. Of course in those days. It was actually overhead projectors, with large convex glass pieces, with colored oil, waters, diluted ink etc. Some dishes had oil and water, which did not mix, along with other glass pieces placed on top of them to create more colors.. Hi Tech huh?... Bob settled in Boston, started a video company, did regular work, and we created wild video/visual short video flicks.

    Bob quickly latched onto video, specializing in video feed back, colorizers, using Oscilliscopes to create lissague patterns, all mixed together. along with some of the first computer generated graphics from MIT. I had accumulated several synths, with access to Boston Studios, The Boston School Of Electronic Music, etc shaped my musical path for years. I quit playing in regular bands at that point. That plus the mushrooms, LSD, opioum, hash, pot etc, set the path for me. Luckily I cut down on the drugs, and didn't get too carried away..

    But as a friend of mine said referring back to those days, if you remember them clearly, you didn't do them right. I miss those days.. I eventually settled into more conventional pop music, ads, industrial films, commercials to make a living.. Part of this piece (and more to follow) is to go back to something more alternative in music.

  7. #7
    Senior Member tedvanya's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Canada,winter Mexico

    Re: Treatise On The Walls

    Honestly I did not think that I will listen all the way, was I surprised. This is too far off of my square-headed taste, (Bruckner,Mahler), but I enjoyed all the 36 minutes, like reading a book, watching videos.
    Interesting for me, that when I am listening to modern music, I pick snippets of it and wonder why He did not go all the way and use this beautiful melody to conclusion of some sort. Like the composers of this kind are afraid of it? People may say "this is old hat". That is an education for me, when you post, I'll listen.


  8. #8

    Re: Treatise On The Walls

    Thank you Tedvanya. As a kid, at the age of 4 or so, I thought the radio just 'made' these pretty sounds come out of it..
    It wasn't until 'The Yellow Rose of Texas' that I realized that every song the radio played was different.

    My folks liked contemporary tunes, mostly hits from 30's - 50's. They never played any classical music. My Dad had always bought the newest best quality music systems, as they came out. He actually had a quite eclectic collection of 78's, later LPs. but no classical..

    So when I listened on my own, classical music was too long, convoluted, complex for my tastes.. I fell into rock music.. Just focus on 3 minutes. No time to explore a lot, just make a musical point, repeat it, a minor variation, and repeat again. By Bill Haley's "Rock Around The Clock" I had found auditory heaven/home.

    Of course we studied some serious composers in high school, later college, (music appreciation courses). I guess I had a form of ATD. I could hyper-focus on subjects that interested me, but really couldn't maintain interest in subjects that didn't interest me. I got A+'s in music, art, writing, C's and D's in everything else. So the excitement of rock drums, and the 3 minutes length, hooked me.

    Although I was familiar with all the instruments in an orchestra, the Beatle's (George Martin's brilliance) of adding single orchestral instruments, and his use of sparse orchestral instruments, was the perfect function of traditional acoustic orchestral instruments. It also gave pop music an air of respectability and authority. Indeed, adults, even my parents would listen to some of Paul McCartney's, '1930's style songs (inspired by his musical Dad).

    I sometimes wish I had had the patience and discipline to study classical music, cause some of the most successful pop arranger/composers musicians did that.. Study classical music and then use that foundation to later write orchestral pop/jazz/contemporary music

    Back to the point of stating a musical point, but never exploring it.

    By the 1990's Hip-hop had modified/transformed into a new 'R'nB' That and the mental bludgeoning of 'rap music'..
    Just lifting 4 bars of a 60's - 70's song, and rapping over it, has shaped a lot of the new current music makers, to just take what I would consider a 'song fragment' and repeat, repeat, repeat, with vocal and studio production techniques..

    At one point in my life, I wrote for a couple of music technology magazines, articles about synthesizers, pop music. Then one day, in the late 70's, Keyboard magazine announced they were going to greatly shorten the length of their articles.. Only one or two articles were to be a few pages long. Everything else was going to be a 'blurb', 1/2 page long. cause 'RESEARCH' (what ever cocain'ed up agency that was) had determined, that people no longer had the patience to follow something that required too much brain power more than 2 minutes. Even the new popular music suffered, it had very brief content, repeated, and varied many times. cause the new listener was too impatient to invest time.

    Thankfully there are of course young musicians who are capable and excited to learn, and compose real traditional music.
    Youngcomposers.com has some teen-agers writing traditional orchestral stuff. You don't have to be young to join there, indeed there are many middle aged - senior composers there. They are a decent site, but not as friendly and willing to listen to the members here.

    I of course will never get to the compositional platform that many of the talented writers here are at, because of my musical foundations and tastes.. My intention here is not to 'offend' anyone. Truth is I am in awe and somewhat intimidated by the scope and depth of many of the writers here. But my goal is to broaden the scope of what I write.

    By listening to some of the musical contributions here . I am beginning to grasp 'depth of music', without having to resort to a lot of notes (or instruments). Yes, I'm stuck/fascinated by sometimes using a bewildering assortment of instruments and sound sources, but it is something I am currently compelled to explore.


  9. #9

    Re: Treatise On The Walls

    Don't be so modest about your talents, compared to other contributions. Every piece of music, well-thought with depth and meaning is a masterpiece by itself. You made a wonderful combination of every sound you came up with. As Ted said, I also have a square head - Bruckner, Mahler, Berlioz - but that doesn't mean I can't admire your work. I listened through the whole piece, wondering and expecting, waiting when something new came up. Be sure, what you did here, I will never accomplish.

    Congratulations from my heart,

    A blessed Christmas to you, friends and family. Go on !!


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