Hanging the Studio Monitors Correctly

How awesome that our old, deal friend John Siket is here for a stay. The Mouse Hole–the studio here at Temple of Wow–has been set up in one form or another for years, but always in a fairly liminal state. Liminal is a really cool word that means it’s still forming. Our friend and really cool Pensacola gardener Jen Chendea recently turned us on to it. Liminal is a step closer to manifestation than subliminal.

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Stop Trying to Sing by Richard Wagner

A book called Caruso’s Method of Voice Production: The Scientific Culture of the Voice, offers an interesting approach to singing, inspired by the famous Italian opera singer, Erico Caruso.

The foundation of the vocalizing approach–in this book written in around the 1920’s–is that singing should be easy and natural and more significantly, that the singing voice is the same as and an extension of the speaking voice. Singing is just talking with melody added.

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Eking Out a Sphere

Writers writing from the margins do not write to be consumed. They write to be read (a different thing) and, for many, to eke out a sphere of existence that had not previously existed in the literary imagination. – Li Sian Gon

Much of this new article in Bitch–like much of the material within–goes over my head, but these two sentences resonated and I wanted to document it in a feed.

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Why Simple?


This particular song, Icicle Man was written over the course of a walk around Nashville one hot afternoon while on a solo tour. Had been reading a biography of Hank Williams and didn’t have a friend for miles around, at least that I knew of. There was also a copy of Johnny Cash’s first autobiography, Man in Black, that had come into my hands at the time.

I was in my mid-late twenties and my last romantic relationship had ended really unhappily,

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Mad Challenging

Yes there’s suffering in these songs. Insecurity, frustration, stress and other first world problems. Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Philosophical confusion. Political anger.

There is not a shortage of first world suffering in the recording process itself either. Insecurity, frustration, stress, anger. Gender issues. Sexual challenges. Economic shortcomings. Power struggles. Terrible communication. Ego trips.

sulfite free wineThis is life. This is what we do; what we’re all doing if we can maybe.

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Further Developments Latex and Lilypond now with Arara and International Unicode Text via XeLatex

The title might be a white lie, because while I did get arara working, in combination with a bash script, to automate the steps to render the hymnal.

Good news. One of the arara developers helped me solve the problem. Stack overflow:

The solution ends up being quiet simple. The only limitation is that we are not outputting the lilypond-book content to a subdirectory as originally planned.

At the top of the music.lytex file (after configuring arara as directed in the referenced post),

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Latex and Lilypond Hymnal Volume Two

So this time there are two new elements to the Hymnal.

  1. It will be a smaller size, 5.5″ x 8″
  2. It will blend text and music snippets more than the first book.

It’s fairly easy to make a single sheet or even songbook a custom size:

#(set! paper-alist (cons ‘(“my size” . (cons (* 5.5 in) (* 8 in))) paper-alist))

\paper {
#(set-paper-size “my size”)
}

And this can be included in a text document:

\documentclass[a4paper]{article}

\begin{document}

Documents for \verb+lilypond-book+ may freely mix music and text. … Continued

Fun Times with Luddites and Zero Tracks on QuodLibet

Wow. That was in-ter-es-ting!

So yes – a couple of the “older” folks were a little wary of moving from cassette to digital format, which put me in the awkward position of defending this archiving project. Kind of the opposite of Paul Bunyan – with the new technology fighting to justify it’s value.

Last week, Quodlibet was finding Zero (of over 17,000) tracks. So there I am unable to play ANY music.

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Adventures in QuodLibet

The vision of Steve Jobs and Apple products are beautiful and beautifully intuitive, but the magnitude of the company and it’s market share combined with it’s Closed Source approach create a bit of a Bog Brother feeling at times. As far as all of that goes, Quodlibet is pretty much the opposite. Open Source. Written in Python which is a classic Open Source programming language. Anyone in the world can make additions to the main code base or create plugins to add or modify functionality.

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