Wednesday, March 9, 2022

My Album ‘Zaman’. Hectic Creativity!

So, it’s been quite an adventure these past 2-3 weeks, first getting my album Zaman completed and recorded. Then secondly the five other things going on in life all at once! Life can get hectic, especially when you’re setting up and starting over ground up and totally renewing a house to the point of a bright fresh start with new positive vibes. That is a journey within itself but we intend to fight through it successfully.

So then, two things happened this February and March. Firstly Polyend tracker, secondly, the completion of my album, ‘Zaman’.

Despite already creating two videos about the Polyend tracker, I’m still not done with it, I need to do a review video on it, but I wish to wait, do a few more tracks on it, get to know it better and so fourth.
One thing I’ll say is that it’s already added to my latest album, Zaman, with my new track Mirrors, which I literally started creating on the Polyend tracker about an hour or two after it arrived in the mail. And that hour or two was spent instantly doing an unboxing and part of the overview video:

When the track was almost complete, around two days later, we happened to take the Polyend Tracker to Rich’s parents house when we went to visit them. It’s ALWAYS for hours as they are great company and lovely to be around. We went to show them the Polyend as they’re very musical people and they were intrigued by it. Rich’s father has a Stylophone which he showed us, it was a birthday gift to him by his daughter. When he showed me it, I had a lightbulb moment, asked if I could borrow the Stylophone for a few minutes while we were still there, instantly turned the vibrato switch on it and connected it to the Polyend Tracker’s input. I sampled a couple of octaves from it and in my track ‘Mirrors’, which you hear on my album, now has a stylophone as one of the lead samples. I couldn’t have asked for a more perfect lead sound sample for this track, it fits like a glove!

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You can watch my ‘Mirrors’ Music video here:

It strangely felt like I was using an Amiga, the sampling and the way I was replacing the main lead sample and the entire experience. The Amiga vibe plus the fact the Polyend tracker is new to me. It kind of gave me a feeling like I was back in the 1990s with my Amiga and my Technosound Turbo cartridge when I first started writing music.

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One thing I will say is that the Polyend Tracker is addictive, I had it on my lap a lot! And I think it will definitely be a part of my future music creation. Though that doesn’t mean to say that I’m going to replace the Amiga with the Polyend, by no means, there’s something that the Amiga has which the Polyend doesn’t entirely have. Also the Amiga and Soundtracker Pro 2 has been with me since the 1990s. It still gives me that warm feeling inside me when I’m creating music on it or doing whatever else on it. The Polyend tracker sort of accentuates the Amiga in my experience, I use the Polyend Tracker more as an extension of it.

Actually I’ve done an Amiga vs Polyend Tracker video here, where I compare it with the tracker programs of the Amiga.
Watch here:

My album ‘Zaman’ has also been reviewed by Bob from RetroRGB, I didn’t expect this at all! What a pleasant surprise! Bob goes through each track and writes about how it makes him feel and what it reminds him of. You can check out his review here:

https://www.retrorgb … sed-on-an-amiga.html

In his review, Bob mentions that he didn’t notice which single track in the album was done on the Polyend Tracker until he watched my video on the recording process of the album. It makes me happy to hear that it blended into it that well, surely the spirit of the Amiga is being carried into the Polyend Tracker when I create music on it with the Amiga in my heart, I’ve had a few other comments in response to my ‘Mirrors’ music video stating the same.

The recording was fun but hectic! Simply because there was a birthday get together we were hosting which we had to prepare for the very next day, not to mention filming and getting the recording process of Zaman video, edited, rendered and released. It ended up being released after 3am! And a very exhausted me and very exhausted Rich (who sorted out the get together side of things, bless him) woke at around 8am the next day and started with sorting everything else out.
I’ll tell you something, it’s never a dull moment around here!

Watch the recording process of the album Zaman here:

Also the title track ‘Zaman’ I actually created two years ago, it was the first track I did using the Yamaha Reface CS which I had just newly bought back then. So this album does go back and forth in time a little. The track ‘Siesta’ I created way back in 1996.

The creating of the title track ‘Zaman’:

There is one thing about this household that I love. Sure we may work hard, struggle a bit and go through a lot, we certainly do play hard as a result, there is a lot of warmth, love and laughter that happens around here and all the struggles and hurdles become worth it in the end!
It was Rich’s fathers birthday get together and it couldn’t have gone better. It was lovely to have the extended family around, happiness and laughter all-round. And I have an album released as well as that, which they were all enjoying as it was playing the background on part of the evening. so a win-win all around in the end.

I’ve learned a couple of things from all this. Firstly, even though I don’t have a dedicated space for my projects at the moment, everything is everywhere, literally. I can still find a space in the house and set up somewhere, film a video, sure it takes more effort and can be a bit of a struggle. But as you saw in the Zaman recording process video, I’m in a room where the wall has damp damage due to badly installed wardrobes from the previous owners which we had to rip out, its semi painted. But knowing that Zaman was recording in this place and this situation, I’d like to think gives the album itself a bit of character. I sort of liked the fact that it wasn’t recorded in some pristine recording studio, or some cold clinical feeling recording room.

Speaking of recording, I’m yet to release the video where I choose physical media for Robin (Rich’s Father) and record Zaman onto his minidisc, plus other formats for our personal use. I think you fellow cassette, minidisc, and audio recording enthusiasts will enjoy this upcoming video! With regards to my album however, in future I do plan on doing physical releases of my music, hopefully on cassette, possibly CD, but really trying to aim for vinyl in future!

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A little with regards to the house itself, we have had no help in decorating so we’re basically slotting in decorating time whenever we can, while juggling other things simultaneously. It also costs a lot so we have to pace it all, getting wood from timber yards and creating workbenches and desks isn’t cheap and it’s a lot of work. In fact extracting a dark gloomy energy from a house and replacing it with warmth, love and positivity is not easy, it’s not just about a lick of paint here and there, a lot needs to be worked on, a lot of inner work too, certain things need to run their course, patience is required and a lot of graft required, not just externally but internally, within each involved in it.
Sure it’s taking longer than we initially thought. Considering the whole house needs something done to it as well as a lot of other things need working on and to run their course. But after all this effort and investment, I feel it will end up wonderful in the end, actually the more hardships that come our way and that we can overcome, the stronger we get.
After all if we go through hardships and struggles and then not let them allow us to experience the wondrous contrast they bring afterwards, the love, the joy and happiness in a home that has heart beyond the surface décor, then we are missing the point of life itself.

Secondly I’ve learned, I’m definitely going to plan a bit better, in advance when it comes to my next album(s). The recording and releasing of my album and music is not as straight forward as it was with the previous two albums: ‘Waterfall’ and ‘Memorias’. It definitely has been more involved. But the journey of the process, from sowing the seeds to the journey of nurturing, is what the entirety of the point is, it’s what gives a fulfilling end result. I’m noticing these days that I seek the beginning and journey of anything I’m fascinated with, whether it’s a creative process or someone’s personal experience. After all, you cannot have a genuine destination without a beginning and a journey.

A destination without a genuine journey is like a bright showy flower, stolen from another’s garden, that has been planted in the thief’s barren land. Without roots, it will eventually fall and wither or be blown away by the wind, leaving nothing but barren land, which will cause the fear driven thief to steal more flowers from the luscious gardens to cover up the withering and to impress people with in order to give others and themselves an illusory increase in value.
But nothing can ever substitute nor conceal a fruitful garden where all the trees and flowers have roots.
A well kept blossoming garden will always prevail over barren lands with glitz, glamour and illusory ladders.

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Here is my album ‘Zaman’ (meaning ‘Time/Era’ in Arabic) on Bandcamp:

https://msmadlemon.b … camp.com/album/zaman

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