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News from the Laboratory  

Music Laboratory, that is. Been working on some updates to the site here, and have added a couple new tunes. Right now, the top 4 tunes on the page are recent additions. Oop Bop Sh' Bang is from a 2002 CD of the same name; the next three are from my more recent recording Tele-ology(2018). Tele-ology is a download only, and is available both here and on CD Baby. All these, and many others, are free downloads- at least for the moment.

I also have a YouTube page, which has both live gig and home studio posts, updated most every day. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCjVSsUMZ_YLwlMYVjeKx7pQ?view_as=subscriber . There you go. 

Those are the major headlines for the moment. Thanks for reading. More later. 

The Mondayest of Mondays  

Starting to normalize just a little bit in the midst of this mass quarantine. Creative juices are flowing again. Got some good practice in on the guitar this morning, and even taped a few things, one of which went up on YouTube. Getting some nice comments on my YouTube page. Always good for morale. Also discovered a new YouTube page, courtesy of a friend of mine. Orchestral Custard is the name of the page(!). Some very interesting content. Check it out if so inclined. 

I've also started doing more home recording. More on this as it happens. Thanks for stopping in and reading. Later. 

Oy Gevalt....  

There are some new pictures up here on the site, and even a new section of the photo gallery. I came across a handful of old pictures from my brief stint on the road- December 1984 through March of 1986. Lots of memories, mostly good ones. More life experience. 

We here in the great state of Illinois are on lockdown from tomorrow at 5pm until April 7th. I was able to make a trip tonight and stock up on most everything. Strangely enough, I was just starting to get out of the house more. This mass quarantine sure put the kabash on that!

This means that all the musicians out there will be relying on their computers. The market, whenever it opens back up, will be flooded with new Indie recordings. More music as it gets made. Just haven't been able to get there yet. But I'm sure between now and April 7th I'll have some inspiration. In the meantime, some new pix. Thanks for stopping in and reading all this drivel. Happy Friday to you!

another Wednesday  

Greetings, whoever-reads-this! This page is supposed to be the more up-to-the-minute blog, and here it is a week later. Well I don't think you could go to too many spots on the map without having had one hell of a week! I imagine there is an astronomical number of musicians catching up on their own websites right now. Thanks for reading this one. 

New pictures in the Photo Gallery for your viewing enjoyment. They cover a fairly wide area, from Japan to Canada to all over the US: New York, LA, Corpus Christi TX, Ogden UT, Wendover NV, and of course local shots from here in Springfield IL. More as I uncover more old pix from here in the cluttered but comfy Music Laboratory. 

That's it for the moment. Hope you like the new pictures. I'm outa here. More later. 

Wednesday  

This is the third overcast day in a row. Spirits are starting to drag. Fortunately, I have some new music to share with you. One of them is a stab from the past, going back to 1985 or '86; and the other is a heretofore unrecorded thing from that same time period. Having a lot of fun in the Home Laboratory, and have unearthed a goodly pile of originals I'd almost forgotten about. 

I'm trying to do more actual songs in here. As you'd figure, they take much more time and planning, but your end result is something with a bit more substance. I've got a couple mapped out on my recorder as far as the overall form, and now have the daunting task of adding bass and keyboards and so forth. 

One of my earlier efforts was a CD called Guitar Psychosis. The title was a take-off on the Ventures' Guitar Freakout. Not one of my better sellers. It was overly long, and needed more variance in the tempos. But still, I think it had its moments. Last night I came across what I guess was going to be a sequel, called Guitar Psychosis Outpatient. Some more interesting sounds I'd forgotten about. 

Anyway, thanks for stopping in and reading this hoohah. Hope you like the sounds. More later

Tewsday  

A big day yesterday here in the Lab. More tracks. I'm trying to do some larger scale stuff, and one of the current batch is a full-fledged song. And a long form at that, kinda like My Favorite Things with a C section. And no, C just stands for C, not Caesurian. 

That was a joke, son. Besides some longer forms in here, I've expanded the instrumentation to bass. An Ibanez 5-string, which I've had for quite some time. Don't remember whether I bought it or just inherited it, but it's from a bass player friend who'd graduated to another 5-string. Strangely enough, he started out as a guitar player, and I started out as a bass player. 

So I've dusted off the Ibanez bass and have added a couple bass tracks, with more to come. The groove is steadier with the real bass as opposed to left-hand synth bass. I remember being on the road with a band that had a very talented but equally obnoxious bassist. Our keyboard player used to tease him; one little computer chip marked Fender Bass for my keyboard and you're outa here. Still, in most situations, a real bass player is preferable. 

This is still in the pipe dream phase of things, but I am entertaining thoughts of adding some other musicians to the mix. My earliest home recordings had a trumpet-player buddy of mine, and also a trombonist. No reason why my recent stuff shouldn't have the same features. So sooner or later, there;ll be some guest stars. For now, I'm a solo act. My keyboard chops are starting to get better. At the moment I can make simple, spare solos- ala Count Basie.

Thanks as ever for stopping in and reading. This is the up-to-the-minute news. More later. 

Blue Monday  

 A rainy day out there today. The Mondayest of Mondays. I have four new tracks from yesterday's fun, and one of them is up here. It's called Freaky Frequencies,and is something you could actually dance to. Ended up finding this particularly eerie patch on my Line 6 Guitar Processor, and ended up running with it. Perhaps a happy accident. I, for one, was pretty pleased. 

I've taken to using my old dinosaur Drum Machine from 1980 for basic rhythm tracks. It's a Yamaha RX-15. Still very user-friendly, although it's showing some signs of senility, locking up in the middle of programming it. Takes a couple of reboots to finally get something going. We might just be looking at finally having to put this fine piece of equipment(for its day at any rate)out to pasture. 

Another instrument I've dug out for recording purposes is my bass. Ibanez 5-string. I've used it on one cut already, yet to be posted here or anywhere, and have a couple more so designated. Looking forward to that. I like to record the guitar parts first, so I'm playing bass with myself. Hopefully there'll be some nice interplay between the guitar and bass. That's what I'm shooting for. 

Thanks for stopping in. Happy listening! 

Fun day Sunday  

Taking a break from the rigors of home recording before heading back to the salt mines. I guess I could call myself a Home Recording Artist. (Oh no, I like the sound of that!) Got three new cuts I'm getting ready to add some guitar to. I'm sorry, make that four. There's one from the last "litter" that I was about to throw back, but was able to salvage it by reconstruction. Had to start over almost from scratch, but got a better groove going. You might as well remove if it ain't got that groove. 

Okay, coffee break's over. Now everybody, back on your heads. There was a joke in there, half-remembered. Thanks for stopping in and reading. Here's a tune to listen to. Later. 

It's Saturday!  

I figure that I make about as much in streams of my music as Spongebob Squarepants pulls down in an 8-hour shift at The Crusty Crab. Remembering an episode where he saw a check for 25 dollars and said, 'Wow! That's more than I make in a YEAR!" Sounds about right. But I do enjoy those little increases of 17 cents or whatever. Someone out there has listened..

Doing a little maintenance on the site today, adding some new music. Might just get ambitious and see about recording something today. Whatever I do today, I'm sure as hell gonna enjoy this weather! Beautyful..

I've got it all bassackwards. On beautiful sunny days, I just open the blinds and enjoy the day from inside. It's the shitty, rainy, cloudy days that necessitate getting in the vehicle and going somewhere. So I'm digging today from the cloistered confines of my music room. If any music's made that's worth anything, I'll be glad to share. Later for now. 

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at our crossing place

Sam Crain

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