Joshua Gizelt (swashbuckler332) wrote,
Joshua Gizelt

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Connection Turbulence

For some reason, the T-1 connection at work has been acting twitchy. This isn't a terribly invasive issue as I can easily connect via the standard modem (as I am now). However, I found out today that Frank has, in fact, gotten me a new air card. I will be able to pick it up tomorrow. Excellent. That will take care of 99% of any of my connection problems.

In other news, while we've taken down the desktop computer at work (there's no point in having it now that everybody has their own laptops), I picked out a rather nice, very cheap DVD player for use down in the hole and I've been making back-up copies of several of my DVDs (movies only, though) to keep at work that myself and the guys will enjoy (this is not illegal, by the way, but the exact purpose for which the "fair use" clause in copyright law exists). While I have not come across one that I couldn't decrypt, I did find that there were some wily methods of copy protection, including assigning the same program multiple titles so that the program would see the disc as being almost twice as large as it really was. Last night I discovered how to easily get around this issue, which is quite simply only to include the titles required for to view the film itself.

Sally's baptism apparently went well; Raz and I were delayed en route by a tandem semi that made quite a spectacular wreck, I must admit, and so we arrived pretty much when the thing was ending. This is further proof of my theory that some mystical force in Rockland has it in for me. I was pleased to see that Sally recognized me, although she seemed rather annoyed by the whole affair (this was corraborated by Tim, so I'm not the only one who thinks that). Tim's grandfather seemed to have been somewhat shocked by the conversation I had with Raz about the logistics of raising human beings for food and probable diets for the livestock. I don't see why.

My understanding is that while Andy was pledging to be godfather to Sally, his men were eliminating all of his enemies at the bar he works at.

The Process

waystone text messaged me yesterday, "The Romps album has an interesting undercurrent to it." I didn't know what she was speaking of until she explained that she found that it had an ominous subtext to it. I told her that it wasn't intentional, but that doesn't mean that it's not there.

Then I listened to Romps and heard exactly what she was talking about. And it made me think a lot about the my mixes, and about my collaboration with suitboyskin. It dovetailed with another project, you see.

I was asked by my friend Dan to take these three mixes he made (the Beatles, the Rolling Stones and the Counting Crows) and re-assemble them with smooth transitions and crossfades. I was quite happy to do so and got copies of the three mixes to boot, which are excellent. Dan has a great ear for musical flow (if I was judging the Led Zeppelin mix off instead of Mad Mike, I probably would have chosen his mix over the one I won with, even though I do like mine), and so my entire function on these three discs was merely to do the transitions. I had nothing to do with the selection or programming, and so what I was doing was technical rather than artistic.

Romps, however, was a project that had been kicking around in my head for a while. I wanted something that would be fun to listen to, and I had specific ideas on how to edit and mix the tracks together in order to work as a whole. Say what you want about my abilities, the process is artistic. One of the reasons why many of my more recent albums have been much shorter than the older ones is because I've found that restrictions are often an advantage to art. By deciding that I want an album to run roughly at such and such a length, it forces me to make decisions, and in doing so I am applying more of my personality to the work (for the most extreme example of not having to make choices and making a big, sprawling mess, look no further than George Lucas' Star Wars prequels).

Inspiration, however, comes from all different places, and many times it is not concious, but rather something that you feel in your gut is the right decision to make. I find that gut feeling is the best way to go in order to satisfy that yen to create, and that's why often enough projects that I've been mulling over for a very long time suddenly fall into place with a single decision that puts all the others into perspective. In terms of my mixes, that means that they can reflect different aspects of my personality. In the case of Romps, the idea was to create something that would be fun to listen to so it reflects my sense of humor.

I don't know if anybody's noticed this, but I can have a pretty twisted sense of humor.

Romps reflects this. Some of the tracks are just frothy fun, but some of them are evilly gleeful or malicious. I listen to it and think it's funny. But yes, there is a sinister part to it and that stems from my cynicism. It does add a certain prickly element to Romps, perhaps, but I don't mind. In fact, I think it's interesting that somebody else has noticed an aspect of my work that I wasn't aware of before.

suitboyskin and I had a discussion recently about why we work well together, and one of the main reasons is that I consider him as someone who approaches his science artistically and he felt that I approach my art scientifically. While our own positions may not be part of the mainstream of our respective fields, he and I meet each other somewhere in the middle. This is a corollary to the above; storytelling is a psychological trait as well as an artistic one.

Talk about a blast from the past! I was puttering about the internet and randomly alighted upon the Village Voice article about Tim from a five years ago.
Tags: film music, work
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