Maybe it’s just me, but…

Overheard by a musician working the cash register at a local Austin shop:

I hear the same old stuff coming from Nashville, all the time. Three chords, same old pile of garbage. I could write that in an instant and make millions.

I hate to point this out, and maybe it’s just me who’s thinking this, but what’s stopping you?

I was a little shocked and silent nonetheless. The person he was talking to stopped talking too; maybe we were thinking the same thing?

…that maybe it’s better to just engage and see where that leads?

FunD WIdeas
The age of character genre?

I was just musing: Is the fact that most musical territory has already been explored necessarily a bad thing?

The argument many people have with music is something like, “That’s not original. Someone else has already done that.” Well, no shit Sherlock.

Let’s take an obscure example: Coltrane practiced Slonimsky’s Thesaurus of Scales and Melodic Patterns towards the latter part of his life. He explored it deeply, and had he lived longer he could have explored it more fully. However, Coltrane applied this to his music. His group towards the later part of his life (after McCoy and Jones and Garrison) was his vehicle to bring that study into sonic format.

Now onto the thought experiment: What if a band with an established voice, like Radiohead for example, started to study the same text that Coltrane studied. Would Radiohead make free jazz? Maybe, maybe not. But undoubtably, it would sound like Radiohead. And yes, I’d buy it too.

The age where original musical ideas created on brand new theoretical ideas is pretty much gone, with exception to those lone classical voices creating music in academia. The age of original voices using the same established theoretical models is happening now.

In other words, pop and country and hip hop inspired beats mixing together to form bro country is just one iteration. All it takes is an original voice willing to explore something different to give us all something brand new, fresh, and exciting to groove on.

Originality is overrated. It’s better just to establish a voice and then take it on a musical journey from there.

FunD WIdeas, Creativity
Avenson Audio STO-2

I was reminiscing about a recording session where my buddy and I were recording a tack piano. He took out a stereo pair of the Avenson Audio STO-2. I couldn’t believe the sound of these mics:


When I want something bad, I tend to imagine in detail what I’ll do with it once I get it. I can’t wait to put the STO-2’s on the mic stands, plug it into some Mogami gold cables, direct into my Audient iD44, and then see what they sound like on a ton of different sources.

Here’s the uses I’m totally going to use these mics for:

Field Spectra: Austin, TX
Quick View
  1. Baldwin Acrosonic piano at my office. Stereo XY is my first experiment.

  2. A friend lets be borrow his beautiful Martin acoustic guitar, one whose sound is the best I’ve ever heard from an acoustic. I am dreaming of the day I get to record this guitar with a pair of STO-2’s in an XY but also other patterns.

  3. I’m dying to find out what these mics sound like in a chamber ensemble situation as a stereo pair.

  4. I would love love love to find out what these sound like on a Decca tree when recording larger ensembles in a sophisticated recording hall.

  5. Thunderstorms. I love nature, and I love recording the sounds of nature, like this album I did a couple of years ago:

The best thing about these mics is how transparent they are. I hope the owners of Avenson Audio don’t mind me borrowing their mic response chart, but it is mind-blowing:

average mic response.jpg

I can’t wait to get my hands on a pair of these. I am literally dreaming of them now, like I’m in a dream and they are in my hand and I’m mic’ing up a piano (yes, I’m a nerd for good sound). They’ll look so good when they’re hooked up in my studio, and it’ll make me sound so much better… Ahh the waiting game!

David Hamburger's YouTube Guitar Extravaganza

David Hamburger, a fantastic guitarist and film composer in Austin, asked me last year if I were interested in helping him out with some filming. Since I’ve been around the block with multicam guitar lesson editing, it was an honor to help him. I took a couple of shots of the sessions we’ve been doing:

And the results have been really great so far:

FunD WDavid Hamburger
Give Comic Sans A Break, Okay?

Typographer Vincent Connare, the man behind Comic Sans, was asked by Dezeen about the font. His answer was excellent:

"There are 200-300 fonts installed on every computer but people pick Comic Sans because it is different and it looks more like handwriting and does not look like an old school text book. It is a personal decision. The same could be asked of why do people like Ugg boots, Justin Bieber or pink tracksuits."

Great news for creative people in their 40’s

Here’s a thought, according to the BBC, people have creative peaks in their 20’s and 50’s. This means for any creative in their 40’s, the next creative spurt is yet to come:

Professor Weinberg says that young people who feel they’ve got more to accomplish should keep going.

”Someone who is experimental and is accumulating knowledge gradually over time is someone who really, really should not give up.

”I mean we don’t necessarily know how eminent they will get and how their achievements will be.

”But for that type of person they will do their best work - at least their best innovative work - later in their careers and they should be aware of that and keep going.”
FunD WCreativity
Austin Entertainment Business Meetup Report: May 2nd at the W Hotel, Austin.

The Austin Entertainment Business group has taken a step into a much larger circle, and last night’s meetup of entertainment professionals was proof of its ascent. Over 300 entertainment professionals from a wide variety of disciplines converged on the W Hotel in Austin. To say it was a jam packed event would be an understatement, and it’s proof that there are people in a Austin hungry for more connection in the creative realm.

Our hostess Jennifer Hutchins gave a wonderful presentation full of great tips and expert advice, and AEB board members Kiki Teague and Ross Krachey pumped up the crowd. Our special guest speaker was David Hartstein, director and producer. David’s films have been screened at the most prestigious film festivals including Tribeca, SXSW, Sundance, and many more. His advice on making the most out of the experience of going to a film festival was invaluable, especially to the directors in the audience.

I’ve written about other Austin Entertainment Business meetups before, but this one was different… different enough that I am awake at 6:30 am the next day writing about it (and I’m not fond of early mornings). What makes this meetup different is how focused it is on making Austin a center for film, television, and digital media while connecting businesses to entertainment pros in the United States. I love how it restlessly wishes to connect creatives with hiring managers, how it attracts the top talent in Austin, and how it connects everyone in the entertainment scene together and in such a way that we all benefit.

Truly, Jennifer Hutchins is onto something here, and it’s something we should all get behind. It will make Austin a better city for film, and for film creatives!

FunD WFilm Industry
How Introverts Think

Largely, just because a person doesn’t talk openly and bubbly to strangers doesn’t really mean she thinks she is better than anyone else. Introverts are choosey about the people they are around simply because they don’t feel more energized from talking to too many other people at one time.

FunD W