Monday, June 4, 2012

Midnight Meditation - Composition, Gear...The Lowdown

"Midnight Meditation" has a fun backstory, so I have been chomping at the bit to get this out to everyone. Enjoy!


Midnight Meditation is a short instrumental with a fun creation story. This composition came out of an exercise that I invented (at least, I've never heard of anyone else doing this before) where I would sit in thought, and oftentimes silence (meditation, get it?), and completely think out a melody before playing it. So, I would imagine a melody mentally, and figure out how to execute it without playing it first, and then play the melody. Once I did that, I thought of the next line. I didn't give myself a requirement for length of notes or dynamics or anything. It was a completely organic experience. What you hear here, originally took me about 20 minutes or so to mentally compose and then play. It was such a great experience, and I've done it many times since then. I did this exercise for the first time years ago, and the music you hear here is the very music I wrote that night, but I condensed it down time-wise to the length of a short etude. But, what you hear is exactly  how it sounded except for the extra space being removed between melodies.

When I did the exercise it was in the middle of the night; some very wee hours actually. So, when naming the piece, I added that aspect of the composition session to the idea of this meditative practice. The first time I did it produced, by far, my favorite output and it's something that I've looked forward to sharing with people for a very long time.

Recording and Gear:

This recording was actually done during a separate session several years ago, and we thought it sounded right just the way it is, so we decided to use it on this album instead of re-recording it. The guitar I used was my trusty Gibson Marauder, middle pickup; the sweetest of all tones! At the time I was playing through another guitarist's Fender amp, which is also just what the doctor called for for this piece!

We decided to overlay some crickets underneath the track to stress the "midnight" aspect of it. And, we added a little studio magic to the echoing guitar track that you hear. Because I like the original so much, I am inclined to think at some time, it might be cool to release just the clean recording. For now though, we wanted to have fun!

Fun Facts:

The crickets were recorded at Lake Sylvia in South Haven, MN. A little Minnesota countryside cricket action is always awesome! Oh, how I love the lakes! If only there was a loon to really give away the location, ay!

We've also got a short video in the works for this track that walks the line between performance video and traditional music video. We'll keep you posted on its development!

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