Derring Don’t (album)

September 24, 2016

Three rough, single and first takes from the front lines. Equipment: Tascam DR-40, CAD22a, and instruments. Where any polish exists, I can guarantee it’s just spit. When you spend your days hiding and running from fellow flesh-eating cannibals and soul-sucking spirits from the sister dimension, you tend to do what you can, when you can, where you can. I tell production polish the same thing I tell the coming zombie apocalypse: get in line.

Consider this a first blush bridge over the gaping chasm between the not-so-random clash of sound we call music and other forms of linguistic storytelling that have, up to this point, left my output heavily segregated and schizoid.

By way of comfort, expect more of this sort until I, like everyone, eventually become food for someone else.

Everfear heavily references a popular anthem of disaffected youth and teenage angst from the roaring 90s, and punts it squarely like a burning sack of shit into the pristine courtyard of normalized exploitation, where it belongs.

Ziggy Dies Hungry arrived in a dream early one morning as a tribute to the recent passing of You Know Who. It translates the remnant ruminations of an ancient vampire while he decays after being bitten by the Love Bug in all the wrong ways and in all the wrong places.

LGM captures a pivotal moment of lonely sadness where I thought horizontal violence would win the battle of the week, if not the war. I swear someday Kermit the Frog will sing it again. He stood there with me while I wrote it for him.

Visit the links for lyrics.


Adventures in Lyricism: Study in E minor

January 9, 2015

https://ayoungethan.bandcamp.com/track/study-in-e-minor (note: no audio yet.  Contact me if you wish to submit a performance!)

description

After playing what I felt were more than my fair share of “studies in E-minor” that many consider classic, beginner classical guitarists’ repertoire, I thought I could do a better job illustrating the right hand techniques in a more emotionally compelling harmonic progression. While not technically part of the Adventures in Lyricism Suite and unrecorded, it came shortly thereafter, while I was visiting CalArts as a prospective music student. I consider it a “bonus composition” and will like to record it someday.

sheet music

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Adventures in Lyricism: Finale

January 7, 2015

description

Prelude and Finale — The Prelude was my third piece (after Spanish Inquisition and Chaos). It was my musical response to his challenge, “Find another technique, the stuff you are giving me is becoming repetitive and boring.” (He was actually a bit nicer than that, but still very direct). After I handed him the Prelude, both my instructor and I thought, “That’s it, that’s a wrap for the project!” We were wrong, because there was quite a bit more to come. The Finale is simply a reprise and embellishment of the Prelude, to frame the entire suite.

sheet music

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Adventures in Lyricism: Redemption

January 5, 2015

description

This was the last song that I composed for the Suite. It is heavily inspired by the harmonic progression in Etude No.1 in E-Minor, by Heitor Villa-Lobos, which is a much more technically advanced composition than mine. At the end of the day, a piece grabs me because it is emotionally compelling, not because it requires or demonstrates advanced, difficult-sounding techniques. If I can say something I need to say simply, I will prefer that over saying it in a complicated, difficult manner. Simplicity is accessibility. Complexity for its own sake is simply elitism. I am proud of the simplicity of my compositions.

sheet music

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Adventures in Lyricism: Seren-Aide

January 3, 2015

description

I was inspired at 2am to start playing this piece…I’m not sure what else to say. The entire A section just came together over the course of several hours of playing. By the time 4-5am rolled around, I was infused with adrenaline and excitement, frantically catching and holding onto new pieces of inspiration about the direction of the song. I thought that there wasn’t any better feeling, until the next night the B section came to me in a similar manner. It is my favorite song in the entire suite, and the composition more than any other that made me feel legitimate as a composer and musician.

sheet music

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Adventures in Lyricism: Spanish Inquisition

January 1, 2015

description

Spanish Inquisition and Chaos illustrate similar triplet techniques, and have similar song structures. They are, in fact, my first de facto compositions. Immediately my instructor warned me to move away from the techniques and structures I was utilizing in order to expand my voice and repertoire. To this day, I am thankful for his forthright guidance: Be succinct, concise, say what you need to, never repeat yourself unnecessarily. A strong, brief composition will always trump a weak, drawn-out composition. Repetition is a way to dilute output, make it seem like it is more than it really is, the same way some people shout at others because they don’t have anything reasonable to say. Moreover, this level of honesty forces personal growth, and by holding onto it, I feel I have become much more prolific better at self-editing. All in all, it is probably some of the most important advice I have ever received.

sheet music

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Download all sheet music for free at https://www.scribd.com/ayoungethan/


Adventures in Lyricism: Chaos

December 30, 2014

description

Spanish Inquisition and Chaos illustrate similar triplet techniques, and have similar song structures. They are, in fact, my first de facto compositions. Immediately my instructor warned me to move away from the techniques and structures I was utilizing in order to expand my voice and repertoire. To this day, I am thankful for his forthright guidance: Be succinct, concise, say what you need to, never repeat yourself unnecessarily. A strong, brief composition will always trump a weak, drawn-out composition. Repetition is a way to dilute output, make it seem like it is more than it really is, the same way some people shout at others because they don’t have anything reasonable to say. Moreover, this level of honesty forces personal growth, and by holding onto it, I feel I have become much more prolific better at self-editing. All in all, it is probably some of the most important advice I have ever received.

sheet music

View this document on Scribd

Download all sheet music for free at https://www.scribd.com/ayoungethan/collections