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Drongomala



Drongomala says he is heralding the second Renaissance. Drongo means idiot and mala means 'evocation of'. He runs a production label in the UK. This blog weaves in and out of focus between music, politics, art and personal experiences. Snapshots take plac



Updated: 2014-10-14T13:17:42.545+01:00

 















Glass hammers

2011-09-05T11:43:44.068+01:00

It's a fragile thing this life.

Irony is that you must live it as if you are unbreakable.




(image)





New Videos for Cierro los Ojos (Close My Eyes)

2011-08-09T09:03:57.538+01:00

These are the English and Spanish language versions of the song Cierro los Ojos (Close my Eyes) from the album Almas Buenas recorded in Argentina. The English vocal was done in WGC, dig.EnglishGear malarkyI used the Cinemek app for mobile storyboarding which is unbeatable and for the actual shoot I used two different stop motion apps (iTimeLapse and StopMotionRecorder). There is a related tech and software post here. Assistant and extra stage design for the video was Lou Robertson - thanks Lou!SpanishEsta es la versión en español de la canción "Cierro los Ojos” del álbum Almas Buenas.La versión en inglés se puede encontrar en: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q39glP7Ld04He utilizado dos diferentes aplicaciones de stop motion para hacer este video, y la segunda era de mejor calidad. La primera aplicación fue la más confiable y por eso empecé con esa hasta que la segunda aplicación actualizada lo logró. Y aquí lo tienen.Si les gusta este video tal vez les interese el álbum Almas Buenas que se encuentra disponible en http://www.drongomala.comAsistente y diseñador Lou Robertson – ¡Muchas gracias!SuerteDrongomala - VozCarlos Corrales (bandoneón)Juan Pablo Navarro (Bajo)Jorge Savelon (Percusión)Matías Chapiro (Piano acústico)Víctor Alejandro Piseta (Guitarra española)Guillermo Barbera (Trompeta)Oscar Margariño (Ingeniero de grabación)TagsEtiquetas:tango universo comedia drongomala muñecos animación títere modelo móvil corto agorafobia gimnasia sueños juguetes sistema solar lapso en el tiempo espacio teletranportación - Show quoted text -Flying Mountain Productionswww.drongomala.com[...]



Demi-gods of the Cloud don't need the hardware to weigh them down

2011-04-27T15:05:32.839+01:00

It's worth mentioning the synchronicity of the other day - 25th April 2011First thing - get mix back online from Glen of my track This Is The Way for my new album. Upload it to Soundcloud to keep as a master.Morning - I'm moving closer to London so I do huge clearout of my own physical CD stock along with other CD's I've bought. Most of my stuff sells online these days. Bin bags are filled with shiny things and plastic. Early afternoon - I submit a new mix of a track, Big Empty Houses, to Abbey Road Online Mastering for finishing touches. I notice that the Soundcloud integration with Abbey Road doesn't work. It's a business challenge for them both as they both want to be the master holding party of your audio masters.Afternoon - I switch on the television and see that Norio Ohga, the inventor of the CD, has died aged 81.Timely. The CD is disappearing and the death of the inventor puts the full stop on the CD eulogy. This isn't big news of course as we increasingly see CD's disappearing from shops and peoples shopping bags. Folks can iGet what they iWant from online. 500 Cd's on iPod is way preferable to lugging them around in your a) family home b) bedsit c) caravanOur prized DVD, Blue Ray, TripleDepthDataMagnets will all be ushered from the physical stores and our bookcases into black bin bags. Video and film will not escape the cloud either. The invisible data pipes are getting faster and wider and we are pulling our dreams and lifestyle trinkets down from the computer hum in the skies. It's all in 'the cloud'. Only the cloud is quick enough - to audition, buy, listen and share among machines and people. Everything else is yesterday.The CD was a bit of a p*ss take really and for a good 10 years the major labels re-released all their existing material and made a tonne of cash. The need to develop artists was lost somewhere as an imperative and this was one of the two deathblows that was rendered to record companies by CD. The second was when everyone with a computer learned the words 'rip', 'upload', 'ftp' and Napster. Independent fiddles played while they burned.I'm not saying this is a bad thing either. Music technology and expression is living up to the philosophy of'it's not about the destination - it's the journey you take along the way'It's not about the plastic and silver discs. It's how you let music affect you - how you wear your hair, walk, talk, debate and gyrate - it's everything but the plastic disc.Demi-gods of the Cloud don't need the hardware to weigh them down. The format is dead - long live the new format!Drongomala[...]



白鶴飛翔時 / 12000英里 - 繁體中文譯文 T

2010-12-18T11:53:36.521+00:00

(image)

從字母謎案(自A)專輯中免費下載曲目


白鶴飛翔時 / 12000英里

“非同凡響的自由創作作品集” Radio Indy
“如同‘Thermal Riders’一樣,Dixon的長笛配上零落的電子斷音、吉他,音調婉轉清冽,堪比范吉利斯(Vangelis)大師傑作,現在——神奇的銀翼殺手管弦樂曲” MuzikReviews.com


《12000英里》是drongomala和Boofa異想天開的產物。 2005年網上接觸之後,兩人立即決定一起完成一個項目,就這樣《12000英里》誕生了。
12000英里是Drongomala(英國曼徹斯特)到Boofa(新西蘭惠靈頓)的距離。 此外,發行時特約了國際知名的英國曼徹斯特笛手Iain Dixon。

《白鶴飛翔時》是三年間歷經寒暑幾易其稿之作。

Drongomala和Boofa於2005年在Myspace上偶然相遇。 其時,Drongomala已出4張專輯並組建了六個樂隊,已初步開拓出試驗音樂之路,而Boofa正披荊斬棘製作純樸但卻能激發感情的下拍電子音樂。 連鎖反應是自然的,他們決定共同趕制曲目,不久開花結果出了一張專輯。

為了讓示範檔的開頭“低重量”,兩人在網路上來來回回無數次交換看法,最後確定了全部修改內容。 曲目形成以後,接著就是音訊和MIDI檔的大小,最終兩人利用《Reason》和通用聲庫直至Ableton Live音序器和音訊。

“我們確實互相挑戰聲學極限,最終到達個人無法期冀的高點。通過實驗和做單獨無法奢望之事,總的聲音效果已趨極致。每次對話都是通過網路交換檔且是開放式的,材料完全揉碎從而使我們無法仰賴任何材料或者固執任何觀點”Boofa

隨著檔交換週期漸長,兩人歷經分裂和兩次中斷合作,最終樂隊倖存下來。期間,兩人又發行了三張唱片,草創了一家T恤公司,拿下 了一個音樂學位,搬家4次,但是他們在這兩年裡彼此勉力“如影隨行”創制樣本唱片。 Boofa飛抵倫敦原籍探望朋友和家人,然後折往曼徹斯特,在此地Drongomala和Boofa僅用短短六天就將大約20多張樣本唱片搬上舞臺,屆時 於格拉斯頓伯裡音樂節第五天在曼徹斯特演員休息室裡由Drongomala演奏。

此次演出雖未經訓練但卻獲得好評,實際生活中的合作密切了原有關係。 Boofa離開英國之後,兩人開始錘煉材料製作專輯,但是最初計畫最多六個月完成的專輯最終卻拖延了兩年。

Drongomala特邀性格管樂演員Iain Dixon加入演奏長笛,進一步融合專輯去除支離破碎之感。 這是Drongomala與他灌制的第二張唱片,他曾對Iain說過:

我如何評價都不為過——他是管樂大師。他既是馬克白又是一個頑童,經常只需優雅地點點頭就行雲流水般地彈奏起來。我說鶴在海灘上進攻小矮人,喇叭/長笛/單簧管就應聲而起。真正的音樂家就像魔術師一樣。此外還有一件有趣的事,臨到他與我們灌錄唱片之時,Iain縮短了Van Morrison行程 Drongomala.

此後,D&B重新遠端加工原始材料——音樂融為一體,聲音得到淋漓盡致地發揮。 仙鶴正在起舞。

此專輯完全獨樹一幟。 某些曲目的衝擊力可比歌劇,定音鼓區域的聲音如同電纜鐵塔傾頹而下,而其它音域卻波瀾不驚。 此專輯已超過一加一等於二的簡單相加——魔力無法破除。

曲目
1. 字母謎案(自A)
2. 暖流騎士
3. 瀕危物種
4. 二賢慧心
5. V字隊形
6. 鶴與小矮人
7. 巨石滾落之前
8. 潛特
9. 鶴
10. 字母謎案(至Z)


誠心推薦

    • (艾福克斯)/ Aphex Twin
    • 加拿大滑板 / Boards of Canada
    • 邁爾斯·大衛斯(Miles Davis)
    • 流派
    • 電子
    • 智能舞曲(IDM)
    • 鼓與貝斯
    • 配樂

對鶴的瞭解會影響理解這些歌曲。

  • 鶴群遷徙時常排成人字形一起飛行,因此領頭鳥之後的鳥群可無需拍打氣流節省體能。
  • 據說,阿波羅曾數次變作野鶴巡訪塵世。
  • 荷馬曾講過小人國的故事,每年春季在海神俄刻阿諾斯的岸邊,小矮人都要騎鶴征戰。
  • 據說赫爾墨斯在觀察鶴及其身體形態之後,受到啟發創造了羅馬字母。
  • 一群鶴睡覺時會指定一隻鶴爪握石塊站崗,因此如若睡著石塊會掉下來,這樣鶴群知道他們無法再受到保護了。





白鹤飞翔时 /12000英里 - 简体中文译文 S

2010-12-18T11:55:13.674+00:00

(image)


从字母谜案(自A)专辑中免费下载曲目

白鹤飞翔时 /12000英里

“非同凡响的自由创作作品集” Radio Indy
“如同‘Thermal Riders’一样,Dixon的长笛配上零落的电子断音、吉他,音调婉转清冽,堪比范吉利斯(Vangelis)大师杰作,现在——神奇的银翼杀手管弦乐曲” MuzikReviews.com

《12000英里》是drongomala和Boofa异想天开的产物。 2005年网上接触之后,两人立即决定一起完成一个项目,就这样《12000英里》诞生了。
12000英里是Drongomala(英国曼彻斯特)到Boofa(新西兰惠灵顿)的距离。 此外,发行时特约了国际知名的英国曼彻斯特笛手Iain Dixon。

《白鹤飞翔时》是三年间历经寒暑几易其稿之作。

Drongomala和Boofa于2005年在Myspace上偶然相遇。 其时,Drongomala已出4张专辑并组建了六个乐队,已初步开拓出试验音乐之路,而Boofa正披荆斩棘制作纯朴但却能激发感情的下拍电子音乐。 连锁反应是自然的,他们决定共同赶制曲目,不久开花结果出了一张专辑。

为了让示范文件的开头“低重量”,两人在网络上来来回回无数次交换看法,最后确定了全部修改内容。 曲目形成以后,接着就是音频和MIDI文件的大小,最终两人利用《Reason》和通用声库直至Ableton Live音序器和音频。

我们确实互相挑战声学极限,最终到达个人无法期冀的高点。通过实验和做单独无法奢望之事,总的声音效果已趋极致。每次对话都是通过网络交换文件且是开放式的,材料完全揉碎从而使我们无法仰赖任何材料或者固执任何观点”Boofa

随着文件交换周期渐长,两人历经分裂和两次中断合作,最终乐队幸存下来。期间,两人又发行了三张唱片,草创了一家T恤公司,拿 下了一个音乐学位,搬家4次,但是他们在这两年里彼此勉力“如影随行”创制样本唱片。 Boofa飞抵伦敦原籍探望朋友和家人,然后折往曼彻斯特,在此地Drongomala和Boofa仅用短短六天就将大约20多张样本唱片搬上舞台,届时 于格拉斯顿伯里音乐节第五天在曼彻斯特演员休息室里由Drongomala演奏。

此次演出虽未经训练但却获得好评,实际生活中的合作密切了原有关系。 Boofa离开英国之后,两人开始锤炼材料制作专辑,但是最初计划最多六个月完成的专辑最终却拖延了两年。

Drongomala特邀性格管乐演员Iain Dixon加入演奏长笛,进一步融合专辑去除支离破碎之感。 这是Drongomala与他灌制的第二张唱片,他曾对Iain说过:

我如何评价都不为过——他是管乐大师。他既是麦克白又是一个顽童,经常只需优雅地点点头就行云流水般地弹奏起来。我说鹤在海滩上进攻小矮人,喇叭/长笛/单簧管就应声而起。真正的音乐家就像魔术师一样。此外还有一件有趣的事,临到他与我们灌录唱片之时,Iain缩短了Van Morrison行程 Drongomala.

此后,D&B重新远程加工原始材料——音乐融为一体,声音得到淋漓尽致地发挥。 仙鹤正在起舞。

此专辑完全独树一帜。 某些曲目的冲击力可比歌剧,定音鼓区域的声音如同电缆铁塔倾颓而下,而其它音域却波澜不惊。 此专辑已超过一加一等于二的简单相加——魔力无法破除。


曲目
1. 字母谜案(自A)
2. 暖流骑士
3. 濒危物种
4. 二贤慧心
5. V字队形
6. 鹤与小矮人
7. 巨石滚落之前
8. 潜特
9. 鹤

10. 字母谜案(至Z)


诚心推荐

  • Aphex Twin(艾福克斯)
  • Boards of Canada
  • 迈尔斯·戴维斯(Miles Davis)
    1. 流派
    2. 电子
    3. 智能舞曲(IDM)
    4. 鼓与贝斯
    5. 配乐

对鹤的了解会影响理解这些歌曲。

  • 鹤群迁徙时常排成人字形一起飞行,因此领头鸟之后的鸟群可无需拍打气流节省体能。
  • 据说,阿波罗曾数次变作野鹤巡访尘世。
  • 荷马曾讲过小人国的故事,每年春季在海神俄刻阿诺斯的岸边,小矮人都要骑鹤征战。
  • 据说赫尔墨斯在观察鹤及其身体形态之后,受到启发创造了罗马字母。
  • 一群鹤睡觉时会指定一只鹤爪握石块站岗,因此如若睡着石块会掉下来,这样鹤群知道他们无法再受到保护了。



Close My Eyes and Let it Go (free track)

2010-11-17T10:40:33.871+00:00

ey up...

Here is a free English language version of 'Cierro los Ojos y Despierto' from my recent Spanish language record 'Almas Buenas'. Click on arrow pointing downwards to download it.

(object)
(embed) Close My Eyes and Let it Go by drongomala


I'm shooting a stop-motion video for it now :)



Almas Buenas Launch Night - Oct 27th 2010 - London

2010-10-15T16:55:53.437+01:00

(image) Almas Buenas Launch Night @ Barrio North, Islington, London.


I'll be playing some of the songs from my latest album (in Spanish) at the delightful Barrio North which provides the right chic Latin ambience for such a thing.


I'll be doing a solo acoustic set and flexing the songs in a different way than the recording from Buenos Aires.



All those that attend get a free When You Go You Take The Garden With You CD single.


7pm

Wednesday, October 27th 2010





Directions: Nearest tube stop is Angel. Come out of Angel and turn right, walk down ‘Upper Street’ until you get to ‘Islington Green’, then bear right. You will pass a Tesco Metro on your Right and Barrio North is a few hundred yards further up, on your left. It should take a 10 minute walk from the station.


(image)



Almas Buenas by Drongomala (Release Date 20th Oct 2010) English Blog

2011-09-13T20:15:53.469+01:00

Blog en EspañolAlmas Buenas (Good Souls) is the fruit of a months work in Buenos Aires by Drongomala working with some of the cities finest tango, folklore and jazz artists. The project sees the group playing new latin arrangements of Drongomala songs from his back catalogue which spans work in India, Greece, UK and the US.Pre-Production: The project was ambitious from the start. Prior to a 2 month trip around Latin America Drongomala had 11 candidate songs translated by reknowed translator Paula Tizzano. After travelling through Brazil, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia and Chile tuning his ears, heart and mind to Latin America and a Spanish speaking culture Drongomala settled in theAlmagro district in Buenos Aires. The choice for Almagro was two-fold, that it was the spiritual home (Barrio) of tango and that it contained a legendary boxing club. Drongomala started a routine of boxing training for 2 hours every morning and began the search for musicians to collaborate with. Quite soon into the stay he was introduced to Jorge Soldera who after a few meetings became the holistic mentaur of the project. Jorge committed to finding the musicians and working on the songs in pre-production to give the arrangements a latin slant. Drongomala and Jorge worked intensely for the month leading up to recording.Rehearsals: Drongomala had the luck to get legendary international tango players such as Carlos Corrales and Juan Pablo Navarro as well as Argentinian luminaries and rising stars like Matias Chapiro (acoustic piano), Victor Piseta (spanish guitar) and Jorge Savelon (percusion/drums). A special arrangement for Exploto Trato Day Ser Alguien was written by Carlos Corrales for Bandoneon. Recording + Mixing : Recording was undertaken in the famous live room of Moevius Studios. Moevius is well known in Latin America for its specialisation in Tango and acoustic recordings. The recordings were all played and sung live over a period of 3 days. Most songs were captured within 2 takes to retain an edge of excitement. Once recorded the mixes were undertaken by Oscar Magariños who engineered the project. ABOUT Moebio: Moebio is one of the best and finest studio rooms in Argentina specially designed by Carlos Piriz, acoustic engineer recognized throughout Latin America as an ideal for recording acoustic projects.In this room have recorded the greatest artists of recent times, including Mercedes Sosa, the guitarist and composer Juan Falu, the guitarist Luis Salinas, the violinist, composer and conductor Antonio Agri, Soda Stereo, Fito Paez, Luis Alberto Spinetta, La Camerata Bariloche, there was recorded the historic album "200 Years of Argentina Music" by the Salta Symphony Orchestra, and many other orchestras, because the audio quality obtained in this room is discussed by many to be insurmountable. Artwork: Juxtaposing the classic nature of the instrumentation Drongomala chose a rising Graphic Novel/Comic artist, Sergio Carrera, to undertake the artwork for the record. He became aware of Sergio through an iPhone graphic novel entitled ´The Eternal City´ which is a story of a reluctant agent of Death who escorts expired Porteños (Buenos Aires folks) to the afterlife. Drongomala "For me Eternal City is a love story to Buenos Aires by Sergio and throws light on not only the characters of this grand city but provides the city itself with a face too showing the different districts, landmarks and buildings."MusicosDrongomala - voiceCarlos Corrales (bandoneón)Juan Pablo Navarro (Double Bass)Jorge Savelon (Percussion and Drums)Matías Chapiro (Acoustic Piano)Victor Alejandro Piseta (Spanish Guitar) Guillermo Barbera (Trumpet)Jorge Soldera (chorus)Oscar Margariño (Recording Engineer)Producer - DrongomalaAll songs written by Drongomala except [...]



Almas Buenas - Drongomala -Lanzamiento 20th Oct 2010 (Español)

2011-07-13T16:55:36.424+01:00

Blog in EnglishAlmas Buenas (Good Souls) - Lanzamiento- 20th Oct 2010 - es el fruto de un mes de trabajo en Buenos Aires de Drongomala junto con algunos de los más exquisitos artistas del tango, el folclore y el jazz. El proyecto muestra al grupo tocando con nuevos arreglos latinos algunas canciones del catalogo de Drongomalaque abarca el material en la India, Grecia, Reino Unido y EE.UU.. Pre-Producción: El proyecto fue ambicioso desde el principio. Después de un viaje de 2 meses por América Latina Drongomala contaba con 11 canciones candidatas traducidas por la reconocida traductora argentina Paula Tizzano. Después de viajar por Brasil, Ecuador, Perú,Bolivia y Chile afinando sus oídos, el corazón y la mente a América Latina y a una cultura de habla española, Drongomala se estableció en el porteño barrio de Almagro en la Ciudad de Buenos Aires. La elección de Almagro tenía dos razones, el hecho de que esta parte de la ciudad ha sido y es aún la casa espiritual (Barrio) del tango y por otro lado que allì se encuentra un club de boxeo legendario. Drongomala empezó una rutina de entrenamiento en boxeo durante 2 horas cada mañana y comenzó la búsqueda de un equipo de músicos que colaboraran en este trabajo. Rápidamente al principio de su estadía fue presentado a Jorge Soldera quien después de una serie de reuniones se convirtió en el mentor integral del proyecto. Jorge se comprometió a la tarea de elegir los músicos y trabajar en las canciones durante la pre-producción para darle a los arreglos una influencia latina. Drongomala y Jorge trabajaron muy intensamente en el mes previo a la grabación.Ensayos: Drongomala tuvo la suerte de contar con legendarios mùsicos de prestigio internacional del tango como Carlos Corrales y Juan Pablo Navarro, y luminarias estrellas en ascenso como Matías Chapiro (piano acústico), Víctor Piseta (guitarra española) y Jorge Savelon (percusión / batería) . Un arreglo especial para el tema "Exploto Mientras Trato Ser Alguien", fueescrito por Carlos Corrales e interpretado con Bandoneón. Grabación + Mezcla: La grabación de este proyecto se realizó en vivo en la sala de uno de los estudios de grabación más prestigiosos de Argentina, el Estudio Moebius.Moebius es reconocido en América Latina por su especialización en Tango y grabaciones acústicas. Las grabaciones fueron todas realizadas en toma directa durante un período de 3 días. La mayoría de las canciones fueron capturadas en las dos primeras tomas para lograr mantener una energía excitante. Una vez terminada la grabación se llevaron a cabo las mezclas por el experimentado ingeniero Oscar Margariños quien fue el diseñador técnico del proyecto.Oscar Magariños es un reconocido ingeniero que comenzó su carrera en Argentina en la época de las grabaciones análogas en cinta.Trabajó en los estudios más importantes y es un gran especialistas en tomas acústicas. Entre los artistas más importantes que le confiaron sus grabaciones y mezclas podemos citar a: Rubén Rada ,Osvaldo Fatoruzo ,Estela Rsval, Los Nocheros, Miguel Abuelo, Oscar Kreimer y Mario Parmisano entre otros.Sobre Moebio: Moebio es una de las mejores salas de estudio de grabación deArgentina especialmente diseñada por el ingeniero acústico Carlos Piriz, reconocida en toda América Latina como un ideal para la grabación de proyectos acústicos.Por su sala han pasado los más grandes artístas de los últimos tiempos, entre ellos Mercedes Sosa, el guitarrista y compositor Juan Falú, el músico Luis Salinas, el violinista, compositor y director de orquesta Antonio Agri, Soda Stereo, Fito Paez, Luis Alberto Spinetta, La Camerata Bariloche, allí se grabó el histórico álbum “200 años de Música Arge[...]



Goodbye Anoop

2010-07-15T10:14:18.209+01:00

This recording is in memory of my good friend Anoop who was lost on 13th May 2009. (listen on Soundcloud)The Deccan Herald in India reported it like this:35-year-old man from Kerala was found dead on the railway tracks here on Wednesday. The Railway police are yet unable to ascertain if it was case of an accident or a suicide.The train ran over Anup Adityan, a native of Thrissur in Kerala between the Elagi and Anekal Railway stations in Byapanahalli division limits.He had booked two private bus tickets from Sangli to Bangalore, and from Bangalore to Thrissur. “It is not clear what he was doing on the railway tracks. His family members have arrived in the City to collect the body,” said a top GRP official. The post-mortem was completed at Bowring Hospital on Thursday afternoon. The accident would have taken place around 9.30 am, the sources said.Adityan had just completed his education in London and was keen on setting up an old age home in Bangalore, police added.It doesn't tell you anything much about him. He was a bright soul with a good heart but a troubled mind. We mostly talked about art and politics and his indexing of facts and figures was close to photographic memory ability. Up until I met him I hadn't known Carnatic classical music much beyond one or two names. Anoop opened me up to the richness of the South of India and her traditions when most of what I was listening to was from the Northern tradition of Hindustani. He set me up with the musicians for this recording which took place around 10 years back. It was with a young singer who went by Vamsi Das (Vamshikrishna Vishnudas) and had a wonderful tone and authority in his voice beyond his years. The songs were a mixture of light classical and folk tunes. We recorded on my mobile setup in the living room and hall of a semi in Maidenhead, England, UK and got the whole record done in a day.Afterwards when I went to Kerala to record Scale is was he who provided me with contacts and information to insulate the impact of trying to run a studio in the middle of the jungle. He put his name on the line for the crazy foreigner. The last time I saw him we were lying on the grass looking up at the stars during a suprise warm night for Manchester. He left his book called 'An Encyclopedia of Symbols' that night.BUY OPTIONSBuy from CD Baby USA UKAvailable from all iTunes stores by searching for 'Vamsi Das' or 'Goodbye Anoop'[...]



Edinburgh, Magrite and how the cover of 'Garden With You' came to be

2010-06-25T11:06:55.350+01:00

As a teenager I mostly grew up in Cowdenbeath and Dunfermline and would always be excited when I could somehow get across the Forth Rail Bridge to see Edinburgh the capital of Scotland.Over the years I developed regular haunts and one of them I indulged regularly was a visit to the Modern Art Gallery in Edinburgh. The collections didn't change a huge amount but I just liked the building, the setting and the mood it put me in when I was there. I was/am big on the surrealists and they had plenty of good content in that direction.Time passed since then and in May of this year (2010) I was experimenting with different ideas for imagery for a single I was completing. I was in Argentina recording another album and was completing the artwork and remixes for this other single - '(When You Go You Take The) Garden With You'.As the single was a dance single I thought that I could try a geometric idea and keep it simple in the way the imagery of electronic dance music often translates the music maths of sine waves and frequencies to their artwork.I thought of a green triangle simply communicating the pubis of a woman but it was boring when mocked up and the idea had been done before. Then I thought of cutting out grass in the shape of a triangle and slowly the idea developed and crystallised when I remembered a wonderful painting by Magrite (Belgian surrealist with a penchant for bowler hats) that used to hang in the back room of the Edinburgh Modern Art Museum. Using the painting as a launchpad I had the specification below for the artist that was going to work on bringing the idea to life. Here is the mail I sent to the artist....Specification for 'Garden With You' Cover ArtThe song title is a reference to a womans body as a garden - specifically her vagina/pubis. The idea for the cover is to have a picture frame shaped like a womans hips and the picture frame to contain green grass with one triangle cut out (like a womans pubic hair shape) showing the brown soil underneath.There is famous painting by a surrealist Magritte called La Représentation (1937) that used a picture frame shaped like a womans hips and it would be good to use this shape (not the actual frame) for the picture frame. I have done a very rough mockup in photoshop to give you an idea but I do not consider it to be anywhere close to a finished piece because :The picture frame is not shown squarely i.e. I used the photo which shows the frame at an angle. I have not taken the frame shape and created a new frame. A new frame shape is needed not a photograph using wood or branches for the frameThe grass is not attractive enough (I used quick stock footage photo) and is in much too low a resolution. The grass should be rich, green, natural and shown from an aerial view.The soil is not rich and warm or complementary to the colour of the grass. The triangle should look like it has been cut out of the grass.- the pubis triangle shape could look more like a womans pubic hairProportions are not correct and the elements do not look like they belong in the same compositionIt doesn't look sexual or eroticIt should be immediately clear to viewers that the picture is a representation of a womans hips and pubis using grass/soil and natural elements.And this is what Santiago Carosella managed to come back with exceeding my expectations by some margin.Single is available now directly from drongomala.com and also available from iTunes and other online shops around July/Aug 2010.More exciting artwork coming for Almas Buenas, a record recently finished in Buenos Aires due out later in the UK summer.[...]









Carlos Corrales (Bandoneón) profile during Almas Buenas Recording 2.mov

2010-06-08T11:07:42.181+01:00

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Juan Pablo Navarro Interview (in Spanish) during Almas Buenas Recording

2010-06-07T20:26:41.007+01:00

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The little things I will and won´t miss about Buenos Aires, Argentina

2010-12-16T12:14:38.234+00:00

Things I´ll miss about Buenos Aires, in no particular order, and without reference to the typical tourist sights..............Things I´ll missSmart taxi drivers who can engage about music, politics or anything else.EmpanadasBullshit conversations about MaradonnaMalbecMeeting up in apartments around 11pm before going out and drinking wine mixed with coke. This is often the most fun part of the night and is revered by PorteñosSimpsons, Family Guy and American Dad dubbed in SpanishOld people sitting outside cafes watching the world go byT-shirt slogans in English with broken grammarCheap beerSmall children walking about in Lab CoatsThe Soldera familySteak - Bife de LomoThe modern artAcerbic political satireSpanish terms of endearment for your girlfriendThe sense of drama that fills the cityFileteado- the distinctive porteño artworkFriendly people - it´s such a misconception that Porteños are aloofThe graphic artistsAlmagro Boxing ClubBeing in a context where I can use SpanishThe lack of obvious class distinctionThe horse and cart men (and their family) that collect recycling at 2 in the morningSecond rate jugglers operating in the road at traffic lights.Views of the city from the 12th floorThe cyan blue of the Argentinian flagThe mashup of architecture styles - like Paris/Italy crossed with a noir Batman movieGreat second hand clothes shopsMastery of ice-creamA common dislike of Maggie ThatcherThe blend of South American and European culture - it´s just right.Kissing on the cheek when you meetWaking up late and going to bed lateClapped out American saloon cars from the 70´sCoffee obsessionsPharmacies that will give you almost anything without prescriptionChoripàn (sausage in bread)How the streets look in the rainHearing tango on the RadioDulce de Leche (milky caramel syrup for all kinds of cake, ice cream)The musiciansNot seeing the 2010 World cup here...I leave just before it startsMorcilla (black pudding)The Argentine version of Spanish (Castillian) - I like how it doesn´t have all the ´htth´soundsCheap massages and service industry (legit I mean!)San Telmo bars and marketsGetting a bag of laundry done for 1.50UKPalermoBlack market stallsBritish theme bars that play the Stone Roses all night.Things I won´t missDog mess on the streetsThe never-ending noise of the streets through the whole night and the public service vehicle sirens that sound like Commodore 64 SID chips through a distortion pedalLack of really spicy foodObsession with Grunge music from the 90´s among men aged 25 and overNatty 2 peso notes and shopkeepers that are unhappy that you don´t have the correct changeCash machines with a low limit for withdrawals per daySeat belts in cabs that don´t workPlease do comment and leave your own slant on what you will or won´t miss about this city!GraciasA-D[...]



Autumn, Ephedrine and Rolling Tape

2010-05-28T00:43:16.865+01:00

Recording is complete for Almas Buenas. I know I am a lucky man to have had the idea grow over 5 months and for it to flower like this.The idea for the record was simple: take songs from my back catalogue that lend themselves to different styles of Latin Arrangements, sing them in Spanish and record acoustic musicians live.I wanted the recording for Almas Buenas to be completely live with a whole group playing in unison as it is a romantic and dangerous thing to do and if done right then this magic translates into what is recorded. Unless you have top quality musicians this approach can end in chaos and the truth is that most records are made using a sucession of overdubs because it is simply easier to do and runs less risk.The studio, Moebio, is a mythical place not listed on many maps or findable on the internet due to the slightly eccentric nature of the owner but is a hidden home for acoustic recordings for those in the know. It is one of the finest studio rooms in Argentina specially designed by Carlos Piriz - an acoustic engineer recognized throughout Latin America as one of the best.Some of the greatest artists of recent times have recorded in this room, including Mercedes Sosa, the guitarist and composer Juan Falu, the guitarist Luis Salinas, the violinist, composer and conductor Antonio Agri, Soda Stereo, Fito Paez, Luis Alberto Spinetta, Charly García, La Camerata Bariloche. The historic album "200 Years of Argentina Music" by the Salta Symphony Orchestra, was also undertaken in Moebio.The change to Autumn in Buenos Aires caught me by surprise and three days before the recording and I foolishly left a window open at night in my bedroom which saw me waking up with a cold and lots of nose gunk. Thankfully Jorge had a special remedy including Ephedrine which instantly cleared my head but it was strong stuff.Oscar Magariños, came recommeded as a recording sound engineer for the project, by Jorge, and it was Oscar that suggested Moebio Studios to record. Oscar had prepped the room before with layouts and microphones so when we arrived things were smooth and enginnering effort invisible to the performers which is the way it should be.The musicians arrived and gelled very quickly. The double bass player had been changed at the last minute and was replaced by the legendary Juan Pablo Navarro who, until the sessions, hadn´t worked with any of the other musicians on the songs. Juan´s calibre was such that this didn´t matter and he anchored the rhythm and the music perfectly. Carlos Corrales on bandoneon proved to be a focal point for the group due to his outstanding musicality and charisma.Jorge Soldera conducted the arrangements in the centre of the room and for separation I sang from the control booth.MondayWe only had the bandoneon and piano player for one day but we managed to get all six songs they featured on recorded.As some songs had many mid frequencies to deal with from bandoneon, guitar, piano, voice and percussion it was useful that the piano in the studio had been chosen especially to have a dark tonal quality allowing it so sit alongside some of the brighter instruments. It was a ´tango piano´. Matias Chapiro, a young pianist and composer, played extremely sensitively and framed the songs with an inspired touch.The day was finished off with an eyeball to eyeball tango performance by Carlos and myself. Jorge and I had reworked the song Blowin´ Up Tryin´ 2B Somebody (Exploto Mientras Trato Ser Alguien) into a completely new tango variant and Carlo[...]



Round 2 - Buenas Almas

2010-05-10T17:41:40.429+01:00

Round 2 of pre-production for the record Almas Buenas (Good Souls) begins this week. All songs have been demo´d with new arrangements and given to the musicians. Jorge Soldera is the producer and co-arranger for this record and I couldn´t have been luckier in choosing him to mentor me through the project and music scene here. Jorge has extensive experience in most forms of Latin music and has worked with some of the big names in Argentina. Importantly, he has a big heart and great ear not to mention his list of contacts which he used to put together a great bunch of musicians which we will begin rehearsing with today. The record will be recorded live which makes the project more difficult but I hope it will give it the edge of drama I am looking for. We record on the 17th-20th of this month. Jorge is also coaching me on my singing in Spanish and his patience is the kind that people attribute to Saints. His lovely wife and family also look after me and feed me as I am never out of their place.The artwork for Almas Buenas will be done by the rising comics star Sergio Martín Carrera who is most known for his graphic novel The Eternal City which is set in Buenos Aires. It is available on iTunes/Android and will soon be put out in a compendium print in Spanish. It is a story of a reluctant agent of Death who escorts expired Porteños (Buenos Aires folks) to the afterlife. For me Eternal City is a love story to Buenos Aires by Sergio and throws light on not only the characters of the grand city but provides the city with a face too showing the different districts, landmarks and buildings. I went out for drinks with him and his friends the other night and it was great fun and before I knew it I found myself p*ssed at 6am staggering into a cab in San Telmo. They were a smart bunch and gave me great insights and anecdotes about life in the city. The lead character in The Eternal City was based on one of Sergio´s friends who was also out drinking with us and it was odd to have a sense of accelearted familiarity with him as he talked, stood or sat in positions echoing the scenes in the novel - almost like meeting Peter Parker or Wolverine.My boxing continues and after some rounds of anti-inflammatories my back has settled down meaning I can get through the sessions without agony in the last hour. I will miss the club when I go. Sparring exercises with people who don´t speak English always have the extra element of danger and I can see the look in their eyes saying ´Does he know what we are meant to do and is there is going to be an accident?´.My house-disco song (When You Go You Take The) Garden With You will be complete by the end of this week and I am really happy with it. All final mixes for Garden With You have been done. There are two main mixes and two remixes. Track listing is :Main Mix by UK´s Glen Nicholls who has worked with Prodigy, Bee Gees, Depeche Mode and a host of others.Alternate Mix by Arimaka aka Manuel Jiminez from Los Angeles who has worked with the likes of Madonna.Dub Mix by Emiliano Gomez from Argentina at the DubSalon - a rising star of dub.Sleeping on the Couch Mix by Boofa. A dark electro mix by this NZ multi-media artist who is the other half of the 12000 Miles album.The artwork is also underway which promises to be something special and hopefully a little risqué .One singer that Jorge has inroduced me to is the legendary Argentinian singer Mercedes Sosa. Unfortunately she died last year but left a massive legacy behind. Some say th[...]



The fixit guy

2010-04-27T06:22:36.612+01:00

Today was a full day.

Boxing as usual. The weekends excesses became evident an hour into the session. A few new faces. My back a bit sore after the session as I used mitts and not full gloves when on the bag.

(image) Next up off to a Spanish lesson - I'm 5 mins late and blame Google instead of correctly blaming myself for not leaving enough time for the walk. I meet the teacher who has got the script that I want to do an hour of song pronunciation and an hour of conversation. We kiss and I notice that as she pulls away she has a spodge of the the coldsore cream I have been using on her cheek. Oops. The lesson is good and we spend 1 hour and 40 mins on the songs and 20 minutes on cartoons. I get homework on the differences between men and women and thankfully her hair has rubbed off most of the cream by the end of the lesson.

(image) Next stop is a fixit guy recommended by my translator. Every record I have done abroad (India, Greece, USA, Egypt) needs a fixit guy to sort out musicians, schedules, studios and make sure I don't get ripped off too much as a foreigner. They are a crucial Rosetta Stone when you are airdropped into a music scene. We talk for a whole two hours with his wife helping translate. He is connected and has worked on a tonne of stuff from classic bossa nova, ambient Michael Jackson Tributes right through to electronic gay tango. They are both good people and he loans me an old nylon guitar. He will get back to me once he sounds out the musicians. Hooray for some movement on personnel.

I get back to the apartment and notice that the billboard across the road, visible from my balcony, with naked calendar ladies around the piano has been replaced by a Harlem Globetrotters poster for their showbiz jaunt at Luna Park.

Some Skyping, practise songs, dinner and then do most of homework late taking a little evil pleasure in giving some controversial answers.



The condor has landed...

2010-04-25T04:59:57.754+01:00

After a two month tour of Latin America I have now settled in an apartment in Buenos Aires in the Almagro area. I will be here for 5-6 weeks rehearsing and building up to a Spanish language recording of some of my songs from the past 8 albums as well as some new ones.There is a lot to do not least of which is finding the musicians that can play on the recording and help me bend some of the arrangements to have a more latin feel and punctuation. I am looking for three key players to work with me : a piano player, a flamenco guitarist and a bandoneón player. The bandoneón is the accordian variant favoured by tango players.My girlfriend leaves tomorrow and the project rehearsal will begin in earnest. In order to keep my ying and yang balanced I've already joined the oldest boxing club in Buenos Aires and have been going for the past 4 days or so. The place is wonderful and full of atmosphere, history and sweat and I am the only gringo there which suits me fine. I chose to live in Almagro because of the Almagro boxing club , which my lyric translator and B.A guru advised me of, and as it is only 3 minutes away it allows me to start the morning with gusto. Almagro isn't one of the tourist barrios (barrio is the term used for a district) but it is perfectly located to get anywhere in the city. Tango's home is said to be in Almagro and the Carlos Gardel (poster boy for tango) museum is in the Abasto section of Almagro.Lots of work needed from me....singing in Spanish, morphing songs into Flamenco rhythms will be a head bender, getting the tango-like punctuations and pushing beats on thirds of beats is all new to me. Wish me 'suerte'.I'll try and keep this diary regular.Other music news : multiple mixes of my house track 'Garden With You' should be ready in a few weeks![...]