►New track: Sunrise on Riva Centauris

Just published a new track on my page and the usual places (Reverbnation, Soundcloud, others to go) and wanted to share it on here aswell.

It’s called “Sunrise on Riva Centauris” and the idea behind it was to create a genuine Chill out track, totally based on samples, trying to create a special atmosphere in a soundscape that depicts the sun rising on a distant (imaginary) planet.

I’ve used quite a lot of samples, and many of them I modified prior to using, so that I managed to get exactly the sound I wanted.

It’s the most electronic track I’ve made yet and the one that is most Ambient, or better, Soundscape. It’s like a picture almost…

Take a listen for yourself and tell me what you think 🙂

Sunrise on Riva Centauris - Soundscape chill out ambient

►It’s time to… Keep Calm And Carry On!

Remember this post?

Well, I just finished the song and already let it out into the world, you can find it on the Reverbnation profile and widgets, on Bandcamp or download the MP3 directly with this link.

But for your convenience, here is an embedded player from Soundcloud so you can hear it immediately while still reading this text:

This is the first Downtempo track I produce, and it is quite different from my previous songs, especially because it is the first that is almost completely made from samples. Exception are the voice takes and the historical recording medleys.

As I already explained in the first post, the idea inspiring this song came from an historical poster:

Keep Calm And Carry On Poster
Keep Calm And Carry On

It gave face to a campaign that the british government started during World War II, to try and keep its population away from panic and fear.

While one could say that the message is not totally wrong, they certainly did came close to what we call propaganda and I think it is quite ironic to tell people to keep calm and carry on while there are bombs hitting the houses one street away from you…

So I found this story quite interesting for its controversy and also liked the classic poster, which has since become public domain and been used in many variations and even colours on tshirts, cups, whatever…

My idea then was that I would record as many different people and voices as possible, saying that sentence over and over again, mixed into a track that has a nice and relaxing harmony/melody, while then, from time to time, suddenly creating a shocking contrast with a wild medley of authentic historical news recordings from WWII and 9/11…

The message? It’s upon you… you can choose between two:

1) Times today might be better then during WWII, but still things often get so bad you feel tempted to stick your head into the sand like the ostrich and just repeat over-and-over: Just keep calm and carry on.

2) If you don’t like the idea of being compared to an ostrich, you can think of it as an ironic, critical demonstration of how wrong that sentence really is: one moment you’re listening to a voice saying it with calm, neutral intonation, the next moment, voices are all joined together, becoming menacing and as if that wouldn’t be enough, you suddenly feel you’re in the middle of all the terrible happenings from September 11… So, do NOT keep calm and carry on, DO SOMETHING…

Hope you like it, and if yes, don’t forget to leave a comment with your feedback and share the track with your friends 🙂

►An end has a start

Got you curious with that title? (I borrowed it from one of the albums of the band The Editors). Then, read on 🙂

Two days ago,  I had the last important exam at university (classical guitar) which I managed to do with very satisfying result and which means that I’ve almost completed my bachelor in music.

Almost, because I’ve yet to do a last test, next week, in a discipline that has only 3 credits (it’s one of those you can choose freely) and which I shouldn’t have chosen, because I didn’t manage to pass the first two tests and I do need the 3 credits to complete my bachelor, arghh :S… but if I’m not totally unlucky, I guess I’ll manage to do it, and there’s still the possibility to repeat the test in september (special rules for students who are finishing).

Anyway, these 3 years at Évora University were totally awesome, I’ve learned so much and made a big evolution in my guitar playing skills (which doesn’t surprise, having had the great Dejan Ivanovich as my teacher), but also gained a lot of knowledge and improvement of my musicianship in general.

Then there are all the fantastic people I met and friends I made, not to mention concerts, partys and events I participated in, or certain academic traditions in which I took part.

Or even the city, which is beautiful (classified by the UNESCO as World Heritage), just one  quick photo for you, so not to forget what I wanted to say 😉 :

Évora (Diana Temple)
Évora (View of the Diana Temple) - Autor: Rita Faleiro

Thinking again about my musicianship, I guess I know today what I didn’t, 3 years ago:

this was just the beginning. When I started at university, I imagined it as the highest degree I’d make (and it might really be), but I never thought that there was so much I’d still have to learn and discover by myself, probably over the whole rest of my life.

I did know that one never stops learning and I also had full perception that my playing was far from perfect, but I had to go through these 3 years of intense learning to realize how “ignorant” I still am, although I already do know quite a lot and became like 10 times a better musician then when I started, 3 years ago. But still, I now am fully conscient of the fact that this is only the beginning…

There’s SO much to learn, to listen to, to discover, to read and to experience, and I’m not even talking of my instrument yet. Just musicianship in general. There’s so much history I don’t know yet, composers of whom I only know their name, works I never listened to, even instruments I’ve never seen or heard.

And then there’s my instrument. So many fantastic pieces to learn, to play, so many scores to discover, so many technical improvements I can still make, so many musical and interpretational aspects that I still don’t fully understand (one thing is to do what your teacher says, the other is to fully understand why and be able to get to that conclusion by yourself).

And then again, the’re so many other instruments. I do play (at least to a basic level) one more, the piano. But that’s not enough. Not only do I have plans to improve my piano playing, but I also have “fallen in love” with the sound of the saxophone and so I want to learn to play it, at least to a “medium” level, one day…

Oh, but I could go on and on. I want to improve my skills in composition (so I can produce my own songs more easily, quicker and better…), want to take my project to the next level (live concerts), and also integrate (or start, that depends) other projects (especially chamber music). But I guess that you, my reader, are getting already a little tired, so for now that’s all, and I finish this post with an announcement I’m very proud of:

In exactly one week from now, I’m GETTING MARRIED!!! 🙂 🙂 🙂