Spaceship Days

Spaceship Days

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Ask Spaceship Days #5

 As you can see, this question is far to heavy duty for a video--especially since I have about a 2:45 threshold of talking to my computer before it starts to feel a little odd. On top of that, K.V. was kind enough to share with us a very personal and deeply inspiring story about how music helped her make it through some very tough times.

Art is mad cool that way.

 First: The Albums. These are the ones that did the most to shape the way we approach our respective instruments, our songwriting, and pretty much everything else that happens when we put our heads together to do something.

Duran Duran - Rio
Depeche Mode - Violator
Catherine Wheel - Adam and Eve
Radiohead - OK Computer
Mew - No More Stories...

Faith No More - The Real Thing
Stone Temple Pilots - Purple
Smashing Pumpkins - Mellon Collie & The Infinite Sadness
Catherine Wheel - Chrome
The Police - Zenyattà Mondatta

Jane’s Addiction – Ritual de lo Habitual
U2 – Actung Baby
Catherine Wheel – Ferment
Toad the Wet Sprocket – Dulcinea 
Radiohead - OK Computer

As for The Song:

The single most influential song (to me as a songwriter) was "Flower To Hide" by Catherine Wheel. At the time my musical world was ruled by keyboards and pasty European men with heavy eyeliner and sucked in cheeks. It was going to take something powerful to knock me off that course. Then one day Dan(the drummer of grey.)  popped in a "cassette" (you'll have to dig into the archives of Wikipedia to understand that reference). Out of his stereo poured walls of lush guitar (both elegant and abrasive) and voice both manly and angelic. "Flowers to Hide"  opened me up to new genres and styles of music that I never would have allowed myself to explore and because it showed me that supernatural, space-curving landscapes could be created with four chords (more or less)... and as a burgeoning songwriter four chords was about all I knew. 

As for most influential song on my musical development, I’d have to reach way back to the mid 80’s Duran Duran tune “Save a Prayer”.  That song was Beauty and Pain delivered at the same time by the same music --pretty powerful stuff if a preteen boy can pick up on it.  Minor keyed, with a prominent music counter melody, and simple haunting vocal melody it made me feel something; that was a thing music alone hadn't done for me at that point.  The chorus “Don’t save a prayer for me now, save it till the morning after…” was dissonant and tense and  the song had this incredibly sensual ebb and flow. Again, 'sensual' wasn't something I was hip to at the time, but the song created a mood too powerful to be denied.  All those qualities, especially use of minor keys, counter melodies on guitar, and slight dissonance are things that stuck with me. Those methods color everything I do as a composer to this day.

Two words: "Bohemian Rhapsody"  I remember sitting stock still for literally an hour while I played  Queen's magnum opus over, and over, and over. It was as though my whole life up to that point I had been listening to music without any ears. I was flabbergasted, awed, amazed, and a little bit incredulous that something so insanely creative, and bombastic hadn't just caused the earth to suddenly spin on its axis in the opposite direction.  The song sent a powerful knowing straight through me. Suddenly I knew that there were no rules - music could be whatever its creator damn well wanted it to be. The parts didn't have to match. It didn't have to 'make sense'. It could be as far over the top as one dared to reach; all that mattered was that it was done with conviction. "Bohemian Rhapsody" forever changed the way I turned and ear toward music, and what I expected of it as a listener.

What about you?  Whats the song that changed things forever after?

M, C, & G 

1 comment:

  1. I want to know if you are going to do some touring and if Jacksonville NC will be one of the places you come to.