Roland Boutique TR-08: The Missing Manual

Having owned four of the original TR-808’s, I can tell you that the original manual was packed with information and explanation. Today’s trend of poster-sized, multi-fold, multi-lingual instruction sheets pales by comparison. Even a downloadable PDF from the website is better than what comes in the box (usually…) 🙂

Sure, you can head over to the Tube of You’s and dig for some visual info and tips and tricks (and twelve gazillion unboxing videos), but having a well-crafted quick and handy guide to look if you get stuck or don’t understand something is an absolute necessity with a lot of music (and tech) gear.

I love my little TR-08, and although it operates very much like it’s older brother it does have some new tricks up its sleeve so I have to dig out that poster to remember what they do and how to get them to function. This will become my new go-to for that – thanks Sunshine Jones!

Go here for the manual, and you can also click the ‘non-fiction’ tab in his Nav Bar to find more Missing Manuals and other goodies. What great gifts to the community.

Kudos to Matrixsynth for the find.

The Secretive Genius (Redux)

In honor of the Scottworks Festival starting today in Los Angeles, I’m reposting this from my old Squarespace site. As a great admirer of Raymond Scott I really wish I could be out there for this, but just couldn’t find the time to break away. Hopefully can make the next one… 🙂

The Secretive Genius

Around 30 years ago, we did not have the Alexandrian Library that we call the Intertubes. Back then (aka The Stone Ages) we had to rely on face-to-face meetings, phone calls, and Trade Mags to collect and share information. As a young programmer and engineer I would spend pretty much all my downtime pouring through Mix, EQ, Electronic Musician, and Keyboard Magazine checking out the latest gear, deciphering DIY projects, and hyperexamining studio and stage setups for any tidbits I could apply to my work. Like Scotty reading technical manuals for relaxtion in the original Star Trek series, this was my decompression, my centering, my moments to breathe. I still do this today. 🙂

But I digress… One of the more interesting things to be found was Keyboard Mag’s Soundpages. These were Flexi-Disc records attached to the middle of the rag with excerpts of artists’ work or some product or effect processor demo tracks (nice listing here, and Peter Kirn talks about the Flexi-Discs here). They were a nice accompaniment to a featured article or a product review, and at least from me garnered a quick listen before being tossed into the dustbin. But one month changed my musical life significantly.

I knew about all of the big players in the Electronic Music Industry – Moog, Buchla, Oberheim, Smith, Linn, Palm, Rossum and Wedge, and a good bit about the musicians themselves – Walter/Wendy Carlos, Vladimir Ussachevsky, Stockhausen, Jean-Michel Jarre, Vangelis, as well as the modern wave of Rhodes, Clarke, Gore/Wilder, et. al., so I figured I had a pretty good handle on the ‘Scene’ so to speak. But with this particular Soundpage I was introduced to someone I had never heard of before. And I wasn’t alone.

Raymond Scott was a composer and bandleader who had quite a bit of success from the 1930’s to the 1950’s, and most likely would have been relegated to subchapters of the history books for just that if it weren’t for one tiny little other thing: he was creating and implementing electronics for music creation as far back as the mid 1940’s. I can’t even begin to dig into Raymond’s incredible life in this Post, so go check the official source and poke around if you want a lot more information. There is a lot of it.
This particular Keyboard Soundpage was showing off one of Scott’s most impressive creations, The Electronium (that’s it in the picture at the top – gorgeous, isn’t it?) The Electronium was not just some ‘bloop and bleep’ noisemaker as was common for electronic instruments at the time – it was an automated composition station as well. Take a moment and think about that for a bit. Scott had dreamed up and was developing – in 1959 – what our Industry took for granted just 30 years later with our MIDI modules and sequencers and still utilize with computers and DAW’s today. This alone is just completely mind-blowing, and when the article went on to talk about the many, many other inventions he had developed, I was hooked. Who was this guy and why am I finding out about this now? It wasn’t just the sounds that came off that Soundpage that beguiled me, but his musical style did too. I had to know more, but back then there wasn’t much to find.

Thanks to Jeff, Irwin, and Gert-Jan over at the Raymond Scott Archives, his music and history have become much more known to the masses thanks to their website and tireless devotion to all things Raymond Scott (thanks for all you do kids), but with all of the information and recordings and patents and writings that they have uncovered throughout these many years, there is still one big unanswered question to me: Why there was someone actively forging the future of music, and yet it took until after his death for any of this to come to light? Why was Raymond Scott such the Secretive Genius?

Although Scott himself expressed regret about this in his writings (he admitted that he was probably ‘too secretive’ and ‘worried about people stealing his ideas’), I personally believe that he was so enamored by the technology of it all – the ‘what-if’s’, the tinkering, the endless possibilities, that the very idea of finishing something and getting it out there just wasn’t as exciting to him. 

I think a lot of Artists have the same issues.

Just imagine what might have been if Scott had put The Electronuim on the market. Or the Clavivox (which he advertised for sale, but I don’t think any were actually sold), Or the Fascination Series (2018 Update: Rebel Technologies is making one! Give to Daddy!). Or his Circle Machine Sequencer. Would Electronic Music have been as commonplace in the 1960’s as it is today? What would his ideas have spawned in the minds of creators like Dave Smith or Ikutaro Kakehashi? (Raymond worked with Bob Moog, so we can safely assume that some of his ideas found their way there, however miniscule they might have been.) What we create and listen to today might be radically different, yet surprisingly familiar.

Nice thought experiment, and well worth thinking about this regarding your own work. Are you a Secretive Genius too? Are you too worried about others ‘stealing your ideas’ or too caught up in the tinkering that getting things out is the last thing in your mind? I know I’m guilty…

Yes, there’s always the possibility that after you slip off This Mortal Coil that your archives will be heralded as the work of ‘forward-thinking brilliance’ just as much as it could be panned as ‘run-of-the-mill insipidness’. Neither of which would matter, as you are neither there to bask in the adulation nor defend your body of work. 
As I’ve said before, you are currently in the perfect time to be an Artist. Stop being so clever and just get it out there – your audience is waiting. Would Raymond Scott agree? From the regret he expressed in his later years, I believe he would.

This Post was inspired by the release of Raymond Scott’s Three Willow Park on June 30th (2017) on CD, Vinyl (!?!) and most Streaming Services. 3WP (like its predecessor Manhattan Research, Inc.) is absolute joy to listen to not only for the achievements of Raymond’s engineering and musical prowess, but for how much he predicted the electronic music that would follow. Again, keep in mind that it’s very likely that nobody heard what Scott was doing (other than a few 50s/60s era commercials or Warner Brothers cartoon adaptations by Carl Stalling), so if you hear a bit of Devo, or Metamatic-era John Foxx, or early Techno, then just smile and think of what could have been… 🙂

Now that’s a name I’ve not heard in a long, long time…

Some Old Fossils (like yours truly) may remember that back in the ‘90’s and early 2000’s I was creating music under the moniker Pimp Daddy Nash. Not the best choice in tags for current times, but it’s just a name (not an occupation) and as a part of my history I can’t completely disassociate myself from it. So why the Star Wars reference in the title?

Let’s rewind to Tuesday morning (post-Laborious Day hangover) as I set the coffeemaker to ‘stun’ and check my phone for any updated audiocasts as per my usually early morning routine.

A new Space Javelin – cool.

Haven’t heard of Space Javelin? Neither had I until a few weeks back at the recommendation of a friend.

As a reader of this blurg you know that Music is what I do and most of what I read and listen to and write about revolves around that. But I also keep up with a lot of technology. Modern music (and pretty much everything else) is completely tech-reliant, so you need to know how (and why) your tools work. Teaching music and music technology ups that ante, so I have to stay as informed as I can. We never stop learning.

I’m also a Mac Geek. Have been since the mid-80’s. I’ve used Windows and other OS’s, but the Mac is what I know best so I just go with it until it doesn’t do what I want it to so anymore (which has yet to show up). So call me a FanBoii if you want…

I love Audiocasts in general, and I’ve gone through a lot of Apple-based ones over the years. And I’ve grown tired of most of them. John Gruber’s interviews are always fantastic and his reporting is thoughtful and deliberate – he doesn’t go in for hype, always stays professional, and has been an inspiration to Casters and Bloggers alike (myself included). Rene Richie does excellent work over at iMore, but his Vector audiocast is what I prefer from him – concise, well-crafted dailies of what happened today in Techland along with the odd long-listen interview. Both I highly recommend if you need info from that sphere.

The others (and it’s got to be in the dozens) have been dumped into the ‘Unsubscribe’ bin because I either tired of the schtick (i.e. ‘why won’t they just do what I want them to because I know what I’m doing better than a half-century old trillion-dollar corporation’) or they just sounded better when I was passively listening while doing something else – I wasn’t actively engaged with what they were talking about, it was just noise in the background. This last one is the real problem out there, and not just on the tech side. Creativity is hard, and making it work over the long haul with quality and integrity without sacrificing your soul to mediocrity takes skill. 

Hmm… kinda sounds like a lot of the modern music business, but that’s a topic for another time. 🙂

Everyone’s time is valuable and everyone’s interests vary wildly, but the power of audiocasts (much like radio) is that it can be an active or passive medium. Video, on the other hand, pretty much demands your complete attention – it’s hard to vacuum the house and binge watch at the same time. So I have a few shows that I put on for those ‘passive’ moments or just some quick entertainment, but when I want to be informed I want content that is not only as accurate as possible, but has been well thought out and presented without spin, or subversive personal bias, or attention-robbing fluff. I want to commit my time to those – to listen, to think, to understand.

Like Gruber and Richie, Space Javelin is one of those that fits all of the above on the Mothership® side. Charles and Mike have their opinions of course, but they temper them with common sense and technical expertise. That they also entertain on top of this makes for an hour of easy to listen to and easy to understand info on (mostly) Apple and Mac-based Technology. Because of this it’s now become my 3rd ‘permanent’ Mac Audiocast, and I highly recommend it if you’re looking for some weekly analysis that is smart and topical on that front.

So where was I again?

Oh yeah… If you listen to Episode 102 of Space Javelin, you’ll hear a shoutout to yours truly, although in that Nom de Musique I almost never use and rarely hear these days. I almost spit out that first swig of java when I heard it mentioned, and actually started the whole thing from the beginning to make sure I wasn’t having one of those lucid dreams you hear about.

Nope, it was there. Plain as the fast-rising sun here in Disneyhell. 🙂

Which leads to the big question: exactly why they mentioned me (or at least a facet of me) was a bit of a mystery. Perhaps some crazy new technology that allows personal podcasts? Had they hacked my player? Did that latest update of Castro do something they weren’t talking about? Some more Facetiousbook® lunacy?!!?? 

Uh, no. But still quite clever. 🙂

Once I checked out SJ about a week or so ago, I did go back into their archives and listened to a lot of the past episodes since that gives me a good sense of their style , substance, and most of all – are they consistent? (Spoiler: Yes. Yes they are.) So I’m sure their logs showing a bunch of listens from this part of the globe triggered some crazy data spikes. But there are a lot of people in this ‘burg – how could you narrow that down to a single person?

Well, Charles was very much a part of the Orlando music tribe way back 20ish years ago, and although I don’t formally recall him I’m sure I our paths crossed a few times. I’m sure we had mutual friends back then as well.

Charles was (and perhaps still is) a graphic designer. I know this because the person who gave me the reference to Space Javelin is also a graphic designer. I also know many other GD’s in town and scattered across the globe. Like my friend who gave me the listening recommendation. 

So the answer is that it’s a Small planet. And also a bit of clever networking. 

Think about that last sentence for a second.

Have you figured it out?

It’s Networking kids.

I got a quick blurb on their audiocast and now they get me to evangelize for them on my blog. 

Can you make that happen with what you do? (Spoiler: Yes. Yes you can.)

So check Space Javelin out – they’ve earned it. 🙂

Bonus: SJ also has a ‘sister’ audiocast on All Things Gaming and non-Apple tech called The Hammercast that pops up in their feed as well, so that might be more up your alley and worthy of checking them out if you’re a different kind of Fanboii. 🙂

Until next time…

Welcome back to pokeintheear.com! (finally!)

pexels-photo-125457Photo by Mabel Amber from Pexels https://www.pexels.com/photo/nature-sky-sunny-clouds-125457/

Looks like WordPress, Hover, and Squarespace have made nice and my web addy now happily redirects to the new home. Took some time, but I have to say that WordPress made it pretty easy to accomplish.

Okay, so with a ‘new’ site comes a new post: a ‘What I Did Over My Summer Vacation’ catchup piece. Enjoy. 🙂

So the new Course here at EduCorp® is running smoothly, and my cadre of engineers are doing surprisingly well mixing a song over a few weeks, and then trying their hands at mastering for the remaining fortnight. Of course there are the usual suspects of mixing solely on headphones so the bass is close to nonexistant (they get decent monitors as a part of the program, btw), and many of them are pushing the highs to swishy, eardrum-dissolving nastiness (all hail the EDM 10k Bubble!). And there are also still a few who believe that hypercompression and pushing the bus processing into sausage-factory mode is the way  great songs are made.

But in all honesty, I am amazed that most of them keep the levels pretty low and the dynamics mostly intact for their mixes. It’s the vast majority of what I get back.

Since we are the second to last class in the Program, I know they have some experience doing what I’m asking them to (they even get a passing glimpse at mastering half way through) and my being the Top Banana in the Shock Department, banging the drum for LU and Dynamics, and chanting ‘Death to Overcompression’ at every company function has (hopefully) pushed the needle with some of my colleagues into understanding the absolute necessity of bringing music back to a listenable (dare I say ‘enjoyable’?) state again.

And from the back end of it all, I can say that it looks like it’s working…

Mastering is a completely different animal though, and although I continue with the ‘Experiment Fail Learn Repeat’ model that I use with mixing, even passing expecations of making one of them persue mastering as a career choice is limited at best and wishful thinking at most. I try to demystify the process, show them the very basics of how to do it (with limited processing – the ‘Old School Way’), and what the outcomes should be in case they have to do it themselves. The Prime Directives are always first, always get a Mastering Engineer and second, if you have to master it yourself then keep the artists intent as gold and just make it sound the best it can. Simple and honest. Thanks per usual to Saint Ian for showing me the way forward on this. 🙂

And they’ve all been doing a seriously great job here. After letting them go crazy with whatever they want on the first pass, the second try after they see that just simple gain, EQ, and compression are all they (mostly) need is eye opening, and the very definition of ‘less is more’.

For those interested, I’m enforcing the -1.0 dbTPFS point for secondary (corrected) mix and master peak levels, and have settled on the -14 to -16 LUFS range (Integrated) for overall level. Saint Ian and Jon Tidey just did a podcast on mixing for LU where they say that -14 is *not* the level to aim for, but my reasoning is 1) we are only working on a single song destined for streaming (a.k.a ‘single’) and 2) we are still getting students up to speed with the LU concept. My cohorts here at EduCorp® are using -16 LUFS for their delivery specs, and I want to keep that familarity but also allow them to ‘stretch’ a bit by beign able to take the overall loudness up a few dBLU if they choose. Just that ability can show them how to change as specifications and standards so often do. Once you understand the rules of the game and how to get there (good metering and lots of listening) you can take the level to wherever it needs to go. As this will fluctuate a bit more before it settles into a ‘standard’, working at a unified target level across an entire program helps retention. And as that ‘standard’ moves, we can just as easily. 🙂

Again, I’m super impressed with how the course is doing, and just how dedicated and determined the students are. I am expecting great things from a lot of them, and hope to be hat-tipping a few of them here in the coming months and years.

That’s all for now everyone. I’m off to do a bit of maintenance and backup and then take a stab at trying a bunch of these new software goodies I’ve acquired over the past few months. Now that my ‘cold, flu, and busy season’ is over I’ve got a bit of time to catch up on technology.

Welcome back!

 

 

 

‘Musical Gifts’ for the 2017 Holidaze® Season

(or, horrible presents for the sonically-inclined people you probably know)

Ah, the Holidaze® Season is upon us. Like the year hasen’t been a big load of horse hockey so far… 🙂

This post was inspired by @drewtoothpaste‘s hilarious site The Worst Things For Sale which chronicles the most insipid things you can purchase on Amazon. As best as I could find, all of these gems are available to purchase from ‘The Everything Store’ and might be just the thing for that special Muso you love, despise, or just can’t afford to buy what they really want. Just don’t blame me for any band breakups, personal breakups, or commercial breakups.

With that said, let’s see the atrocities for 2017:


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Guitarists always need picks. Even though they usually have a case full of them or just scour the stage to see what the opening act left behind, this Michigan J Frog pick is what that special guit-picker in your life really needs – a plectrum that is constructed out of ‘solid brass’ and ‘etched using a chemical process’. In all honesty you could probably buy a few thousand from the local music shop for the price of this one, but remember that those probably won’t be constructed from ‘solid brass’ or ‘etched using a chemical process’, although you’d be right to assume they probably are.

If you need clarity on exactly who is ‘chemically etched’ on this particular pick, go here.


11

Accordions are frickin’ expensive. And if you know someone who plays one, they probably have one (if not dozens of them) already. So why not get them a reminder of the fact that they do play the accordion by getting them a 1/6th scale model (complete with case!) of an actual accordion that doesn’t make a sound. Now if only the real thing didn’t…


10

This 110% Guranteed Nightmare Fuel Nutcracker is a true ‘classic’ in both type and genre, and will fill your home with whimsical glee during those gloomy winter months when no matter how much aluminum foil you put on the windows, it’s still gonna be a Blue Christmas. Bonus points if you noticed the strange growth on its ‘hand’ and understood its significance. If you can figure out why it seems to be facing inward please let me know.


9

Number Nine on our list is sadly not a Beatles reference. It does, however, have relevance to the Fab Four for being the sound originally chosen to end A Day In The Life. But hey, at least that pickup is ‘professional grade‘ and it’s proudly Made in the USA! Since it’s out of stock, I have no idea how much this costs, but I’d bet you could make one for less than $3 with only a couple of trips to Dollar Stores. Cheapskate.


8

Seriously? Kid, if your Grandma is chillin’ to Rap Caviar then she don’t need no damn translation. But if she finds out you also bought the “Frequently bought together” bundle then you should be seriously concerned about where she’s gonna put that Amazon Echo you got her last year.


7For the trendy Audio Connoisseur on your list, this overpriced landfill magnet is truly the greatest, most-bestest way vinyl junkies can keep their souvenir conversation pieces lint, dust, and grit-free. I’m surprised that no one has come up with a way to make the dust jackets lint, dust, and grit-free, since those are the actual things that gather lint, dust, and grit whilst their inner contents remain in pristine condition due to lack of use. Act fast though – these are Limited Edition…


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This complete waste of human engineering is the most expensive item on this list. But to play Devil’s Advocate, it will totally keep your near-obsolete, laser-kissed physical media in absolute tip-top working condition. I keenly remember when I finally gave in to digital and totally destroyed all my CD’s because I couldn’t keep them from getting magnetized.

And such a breeze to operate with only two buttons: ‘Power’ and ‘Erase’. Erase?


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The Audacity!

For Music Geeks like myself, having really good audio software is not only a necessity, but our way of contributing to the national economy. For in a world where music software can cost hundreds or even thousands of dollars, I was truly amazed at how cheap this software was for its power and capability. Just looky what it can do:

  • You can cut, copy and paste parts of recordings and then add effects like echo, amplification and noise reduction. You can also do many extras like : Trim the silence off the beginning and end of audio files. Fade-in and fade-out of music files. Adjust audio volume levels and amplify and equalize effects.
  • Record Live Audio. Audacity records from any audio source that can be plugged into your computer: live performances, interviews, radio, vinyl records, LP, tape players, microphones, mixers, electronic instruments.
  • Restore vinyl records, tapes into digital recordings or CDs.
  • Record Live Audio / Streaming Audio / Whatever Playing on the Computer
  • Supports many Audio and Music File Formats including Ogg Vorbis, MP3, WAV, AIFF, GSM WAV, MP2, M4A, WMA, AC3, ARM, FLAC and many more

Someone could gain a lot of favor in the music community by offering this type of software cheaper, or even better yet, for free.


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Not sure about all of you, but I for one am sick and tired of my precious cowbells being hit on, dinged around, and dented up. Thankfully, Latin Percussion has me covered, and quite literally at that. It’s features, you ask?

  • Nylon pouch with drawstring
  • Holds and protects cowbell and beater
  • Black

These are Modern Times, I tell you.


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This hopefully flame-retardant ditty is not only a knee-slapper, but also has a twinge of Holiday relatedness to it. Double-plus bonus points for not only copping Kanye’s specs, but his dejected look as well.

I thought about buying one of these, but unfortunately didn’t seem to fit into one of their cateories of people who would enjoy it the most:

  • This funny t-shirt that says ‘Photosynthesis Synthesizer 80’s Keyboard Music Pun’ is the perfect shirt for trippy psychedelic lovers! It makes a great gift for any birthday, Christmas, graduation or gift giving occasion!
  • People who love kids children, punk goth emo, chemistry, trippy psychedelic, vintage retro are sure to love tee shirt. These are awesome shirts with cool pun, abstract, girlfriend, awesome, joke, sarcasm, cute, trippy psychedelic, boyfriend, cool themes.

2

We’re getting close to the end here, and if there’s anything that’s missing from this list is some kind of actual noise-making thingamadoodle. Yes, I know I linked to an Electric Kazoo above, but that’s Currently Unavailable, dammit. So to make up for that I present you with this quasi-NSFW looking stick that quacks. That’s right – quacks.

But fear not if you happen to be the type that is all-too-easily weirded out by quacking noises, because they make one that sounds like a canary too. Mark my words that future generations will covet these once some EDM producer makes an entire full-length out of quacking noises and canary tweets. Better grab several now before the Ebayers get hip.


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And the Top Prize goes to this underrated kitchen utility specially designed for the Phat Beatmaker who can not only drop some serious Trap Boom, but also whip up a mess of Phat Beets for pre- or post-gig culinary shindigs. Since most Kitchen Deejays and Producers live in constant dread of not only being eminently fashionable but also about getting their eminent fashions soiled during this process, this apron features a ‘Unique Process Using Eco-Friendly Ink Ensures Vibrant, Long Lasting Print’ and is ‘Made Using Heavyweight Cotton, Pre-shrunk and Brushed for a More Luxorious Feel’, so you can ‘cook’ in style and comfort. Can also be used in a pinch as that ‘Saucy LBD’ for Holiday parties or club nights.

What’s that you say? Chicago House is more your style? Gotcha covered.


As a hat tip to Drew, I couldn’t let this pass by if you haven’t seen it on his site. Besides, it gives me one more Kanye swipe:

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Happy Holidaze® Everyone!

The Theatre of the Mind

Happy Post-Thanksgiving everyone! Hope yours was deliciously food-comatastic and every conversation was thought-provoking and positive. 🙂

Every Thanksgiving I have to watch ‘Turkeys Away’ from the classic TV show WKRP In Cincinnati. Much like the MST3K Turkey Day Marathon has become, it’s a holiday classic before the traditional holiday classics, and something to put a lot of giggles into your day while waiting for the graze-fest to begin.

After I watched the episode (and man is it still a laugh riot after almost 40 years) I did a bit of a deep-dive into some WKRP history and trivia and in the process found something very cool: http://wkrp-relived.blogspot.com. Roy Penney goes episode-by-episode of the Complete Box Set DVD’s, does a quick rundown for the uninitiated, and adds some analysis and twinkly-eyed nostalgia for those in the know. This is another reason why the Interwebz® are worth rooting around every so often to find the gems in the ever-growing pile of dirt.

Anyway, as I was looking up his account of the Turkeys Away episode, I found this statement:

“The second important aspect is that the magic of this episode mirrors the magic of radio itself: it’s all about the theatre of the mind. Radio is a medium that paints pictures with words. We see it performed in spectacular fashion on three separate occasions, kicking off the second half of the show.”

Wow. Never thought of this before, and as an Old Time Radio nerd I really should have. In that sentence he encapsulated why I have loved this show after all these years, and have always considered it one of the best television programs both written and performed. So I popped in one of my AirPods, cued up Turkeys Away, and just listened to it as I would any other OTR show, and it totally works as an audiocast.

Yeah, there are a few sight gags that get lost in translation, but to hear a show that was designed for a purely visual medium work comedically as audio alone is a testament to the producers, writers, and the actors. I can’t tell you if that was the idea the writers had initially, but if it was then it’s sheer genius. Even if it wasn’t intentional, it’s still an impressive feat and just fills my mind with ideas on how I can implement this into what I do in Audioland. And of course, now I have to see how well some of the other episodes (and possibly any other series’ as well) work as ‘radioplays’. Like I don’t have enough to do already… 🙂

Regardless, it just fortifies the concept of ‘The Theatre of the Mind’ and why I am so compelled towards creating and manipulating music and sound. Not only because of the camaraderie and creativity, but because it’s such a perfect way to impact the most powerful resource we have as emotional beings – our imaginations. Being able to turn physical auditory vibrations into feelings of deep sadness, resounding joy, or unseen landscapes full of awe and wonder is a positively magical thing. Arthur William Edgar O’Shaughnessy so eloquently put this into words some 150 years ago:

”We are the music-makers,

And we are the dreamers of dreams,

Wandering by lone sea-breakers,

And sitting by desolate streams.

World-losers and world-forsakers,

Upon whom the pale moon gleams;

Yet we are the movers and shakers,

Of the world forever, it seems.

With wonderful deathless ditties

We build up the world’s great cities,

And out of a fabulous story

We fashion an empire’s glory:

One man with a dream, at pleasure,

Shall go forth and conquer a crown;

And three with a new song’s measure

Can trample an empire down.

We, in the ages lying

In the buried past of the earth,

Built Nineveh with our sighing,

And Babel itself with our mirth;

And o’erthrew them with prophesying

To the old of the new world’s worth;

For each age is a dream that is dying,

Or one that is coming to birth.”

Our world here in music and sound is a powerful force, so how are you going to affect people with your Theatre of the Mind today?