Category Archives: Media Composition

Acoustic treatment

At the end of last year I set about making these acoustic traps for the studio. The work consisted of making a wooden frames to house thick rockwool slabs covered in hessian.

They are there to absorb sound waves and prevent them from bouncing around the room. Big thanks should go to Michael Armstrong from http://www.afiddesign.co.uk/ for helping cut the lengths of wood precisely with his massive circular saw – if I had done it myself I am pretty sure they wouldn’t look quite as symmetrical as they do.

You can see the end result  – three of them are hanging on the wall here  behind the speakers – I have a couple more to do as well as a larger trap to hang from the ceiling but the sound is already loads better – much tighter top end and a lovely rounded bottom.

 

studio

36 Lime Street Open Studios

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There is a load of stuff happening in the Ouseburn this weekend folks..

As part of Ouseburn Open Studios I will be opening my studio ( 2G in 36 Lime Street – 2nd floor ) to visitors between 10am and 6pm on both days with a varied programme of musical activities for your enjoyment including hourly short piano recitals, teaching master classes, screenings of media compositions and even a live scoring demo.

The programme for Saturday 29th November is…

10am           Piano Lessons – observed teaching and learning – open to the public

12pm            Short Piano Recital

1pm              Short Piano Recital

1.30              Screening and presentation of media compositions

2                   Short Piano Recital

2.30              Piano Masterclass

3                   Short Piano Recital

3.30              Live Scoring Demo

4                   Short Piano Recital

4.30              Screening and presentation of media composition work

5pm              Short Piano Recital

 

I will have a range of CD’s for sale including my solo piano album ‘Sailing On The Big Sea’ and my EP ‘Kite Flying’as well as gift vouchers for piano lessons.

The Ouseburn Valley is the creative heart of Newcastle. On the last weekend of November the Ouseburn Open Studios event sees venues open their doors, offering a unique chance to come and glimpse the working world of over 200 artists and designer-makers. There’s a huge variety of affordable and original work to buy, from paintings, ceramics, sculpture, jewellery, furniture, prints, and much more to suit everyone’s taste.

Venues opening are…The Biscuit Tin, The Biscuit Factory, Northern Print, Toffee Factory, Mushroom Works and 36 Lime Street.

for more info visit http://www.ouseburnopenstudios.org/

 

 

 

Mars – The Bringer Of War

gustav holstRecently I have been experimenting with some new (and some old) orchestral sample libraries and put together this arrangement of ‘Mars – The Bringer of War’ by Gustav Holst from ‘The Planet Suite’. not the whole thing – just 70 seconds long. I used a combination of Spitfire, Symphobia, VSL and East West samples.

The English composer Gustav Holst died in 1934 and was a significant influence on many other composers including Benjamin Britten and Michael Tippett. The Planet Suite, by far his most widely known composition, was composed between 1914 and 1916 during the first world war.

Biographer Michael Short writes …”In “Mars”, a persistent, uneven rhythmic cell consisting of five beats, combined with trumpet calls and harmonic dissonance provides battle music which is unique in its expression of violence and sheer terror… Holst’s intention being to portray the reality of warfare rather than to glorify deeds of heroism”

 

 

 

 

Independent Artists

support indie artistsThis quote I came across recently struck a chord.

When you buy from an independent artist you are buying more than just a painting or a novel or a song.  You are buying hundreds of hours of experimentation and thousands of failures.  You are buying days, weeks, months, years of frustration and moments of pure joy.  You are buying nights of worry about paying the rent, having enough money to eat, having enough money to feed the children, the birds, the dog.  You aren’t just buying a thing.  You are buying a piece of heart, part of a soul, a private moment in someone’s life.  Most importantly, you are buying that artist more time to do something they are truly passionate about; something that makes all of the above worth the fear and the doubt; something that puts the life into the living. 
–Rebekah Joy Plett

Support independent artists folks. Go to open studios, buy direct from artists and musicians, commission a work. Buy them the time to do the work that they are passionate about.

 

Scary Music

This ones a bit different. 
Pleasingly, it was judged to be too scary for small children. 
It now features on the forthcoming episode of ‘Settling the Score’ on Basic FM. 
Best listened to at high volume, alone, in the dark, with a darth vader helmet on…do your own asthmatic breathing…