Aug 28, 2013

the black keys (and the white ones, too)

Being a guitarists, I give my piano playing musician friends a hard time. I accuse them of having no soul since they can't get vibrato, sustain notes without the aid of machinery, and can't bend notes. In other words, they can't do all the cool stuff that guitarists do (keyboards are another story). But to say that they don't emote is a bold statement. Piano covers a lot of ground, even if you can't take it to a campfire (still got them beat!). Just put on most amazing soundtacks and you can feel piano wire delicately gluing the mood to the scene.

I remember being a young guitarist and sitting in a piano practice room with a big hollowbody guitar. I'd rest the end of the neck somewhere up on the piano, hold down the sustain key, and play really nice add 9 sus 11 chords and listen to the overtones that formed like a cloud, barely dissipating. That could be my first dive into real, live ambient, and those moments have defined a valuable moments in my life.

My initial self reaction was that using predominantly piano for a mix was that it would end up sounding like cold new age glop. Or piano bar kitsch. I definitely wanted to use music that spoke, and didn't just repeat a bunch of repetitive and tired progressions for the sake of passing time. Not my style. I purposely took this long to do such a thing so that I could really find music that stuck to my soul, and caused a lasting sensation. I hope that it sticks to your soul, and brings you peace.

turn on, tune in, sleep...
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Aug 23, 2013

guest mix: junkyard angel

Admittedly, I search out some odd music a lot of times, just to keep my ear sharp. I am always really stoked by something that can capture my full attention or sit in the background, but it's very hard for music to have an equal footing in each camp. There are even few mixes that can keep my attention musically, inspiring me to search the artists involved, and have me floored from the beginning to the end with an anxious anticipation of each approaching colorful scene. Now, I have to say that I post mixes that I wish I had created myself. When I hear these mixes, I am happy that someone created this with the hopes that anyone would possibly hear this, not even realizing that this someone was me. I like to think that they made it for me, because its mood fits whatever I'm feeling at the time, as if to say 'here's the current soundtrack for your life's situation'. Those kinds of mixes stay in your head, swimming around, building your addiction to their sonic offerings.


I am way proud to have an opportunity to release some music by someone that I respect as a person, artist, and musician. This mix was presented by my request to JUNKYARD ANGEL. In receiving this mix, I got to converse (a bit extensively) with Junkyard Angel, which is always the best part. I was afforded the opportunity to exchange listening histories, speak of what drives him artistically, and hear some general things about his life. I is an absolute inspiration to realize that people on the other side of the pond have the same interest, aspirations, and commitments. It is even more inspiring to know that we share similar musical tastes and that music is a very powerful and life-defining force for us. Junkyard Angel is a musician's musician, fully capable of weaving the same magical fabric that inspired him (you can hear and download his compositions HERE; we've even talked about some collaborations, which I'm REALLY stoked about). 

The sounds that Junkyard Angel put together lay somewhere between ambient, mystery, and a twist of happy nightmares. Since I heard the very first mix from him, I've been taken in and elated to have found all new music that I had not yet discovered. And that's a high for me. Every mix by Junkyard Angel is aural bliss, and I present you with my favorite (you can snag 2 more mixes from MY BLOG). I've used these mixes consciously and subconsciously, and they are effective in both arenas. Take it in, and enjoy it.

Thanks, Junkyard Angel, for the opportunity. Visit Junkyard Angel at his MIXCLOUD page.

*say 'hello' to Ollie for me*

turn on, tune in, sleep...
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Aug 9, 2013

guest mix: omul nou

As a 'sleep DJ', I'm always searching for others in the same business. I have to say that I'm pretty blown away by the whole scene of creators and our common mission of easing the tension created by a turbulent world. We all in a sense pay respects to Dave at LOWLIGHT MIXES for essentially paving a lot of the way for us to do what we do (he wasn't the first, but he's been so dedicated and consistent throughout the years that he may as well be the first). Dave got me into all of this in the first place, and through tons of badgering and questions, he got me up and running. So I'm constantly on the lookout for others that do what we do, and use Mixcloud to discover and communicate.

OMUL NOU is one of the discoveries I've luckily made through Mixcloud. At times, I listen to whatever mix comes up, and hopefully it will catch my attention. Or it can be that the pure tranquility of the mix will draw me deeply into its world. With Omul Nou, the latter is the case. I have to admit, I've had some really good sleep listening to Omul's mix. At the computer. In a chair. Upright. In the middle of the day with the sun on me. More than once. And yes, drooling (bonus!). FYI, drooling to a 'sleep DJ' is like sweat to an athlete. Just wanted to clear that up. 

I've chose to host the mix Silent Voice. While it's a mere 2 songs, this one to me is pure meditative therapy, and it's my favorite. Also, I can say that it's so very difficult to mentally make it to the end of this without a sweet disconnect. If you can make it all the way through and don't get taken in, something is wrong. After a good dose of Omul's creation, I feel sedated with clear mind, and its ability to be work in both the background and foreground against a backdrop of commotion eases my mind This presentation is much like Brian Eno's Music for Airports or Discreet Music, and it always nice to discover a gem like this. I hope that you, the listener, finds the same peace and tranquil mental state that I've found. Enjoy the mix, and feel free to use for you nightly excursions beyond the dark curtain of slumber. Check out Omul Nou's MIXCLOUD page for more meditative vibe. Peace.

turn on, tune in, sleep...
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Aug 2, 2013

cosmic voyage of the mind

It's time to get back within your mental spaceship for another cosmic endeavor. I've been digesting a good share of space music, and have been fine tuning the craft for a peaceful journey to the deep, quiet spaces within your mind. I trust that you've gotten your pre-flight briefing and that there are no questions. Feel free to use electronic devices during any part of flight (mental snapshots are encouraged). There will be an in-flight meal of relaxing cosmic energy, as well as morsels of mind nourishment. You are advised to check your negative energy and bad vibe baggage in at check-in. These burdens will be stowed under the craft and will more than likely dropped from the sky like a hot potato at some point during the trip. Do not let this sadden you.


If at any time during the flight you feel mental weightlessness, feel free to engage this phenomenon with subdued vigor. Letting go of yourself will bring you great peace and it has to be noted that it is the journey and the destination that provides you with renewal. It must also be noted that the destination for each traveling soul will be different from the next. Searching peace and elation is our next stop. Make sure that your sleep belts are fastened, you have been properly hydrated, and enjoy your flight.


In the near future, I will be fortunate to have some more guest mixes that I'm very excited about from Mixcloud artists that have woven pure magic. I'm also in the process of creating some more original music (that will be half composed/half improvised), and also have some collaborations. Sorry about the sparseness of the posting, I've been spending my time fishing, biking, flying kites, swimming, playing baseball and soccer (or football to the rest of the world) and most importantly throwing the frisbee. With the young 'uns, of course. Good times.


turn on, tune in, sleep...
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