Website update

I’ve had this site running for several years, but I’ve never really used it for its intended purpose: a landing page for those interested in my music. I’ll occasionally post something to Soundcloud, but generally it will hang out and get a few plays. And sometimes I’ll post something to this blog which has been running since 2008, but very rarely.

Why so quiet? Continue reading

New site design

Heya, folks.  I spent a few hours fiddling with the site design and made it prettier.  I hope everything works the way it should.  I’m still trying to add twitter functionality, so the sidebar
(over there ——> )
will show my recent @zath tweets.  I’m also tooling around with a Contact page, because ultimately this site should be a portfolio site and allow potential clients to reach me for a quote, yeah? :)

Genesis tracker?

What I don’t understand is that if TFM Music Maker works as a music-tracker for 2 YM2203 chips (sounds like the FM in a Genesis but monaural) and Mod2PSG can work as a music-tracker for SN76489 chips (the PSG in a Genesis or Sega Master System or Game Gear), why they can’t make a single music-tracker that has both kinds of chips, and some kind of fake DAC, and arbitrary stereo? That way, in order to make Genesis chiptunes, I wouldn’t have to match two different kind of tempo settings in two programs and, even after that, artificially stretch a wave output from one to match the other?!

I suppose the answer is that the goal of emulation is to make the end result authentic.  So they’d rather make a tracker with one YM2612 chip that is capable of working with the SN76489 and its own DAC rather than all that jury rigging.  And perhaps the speed/tempo settings on YM2203 and SN76489 chips are incompatible but the YM2612 can control the SN76489 or they’re both controlled by the Genesis central processor… or something.  I should ask somebody who knows about this kind of stuff.

Reality selected

The alternate reality that I inhabit is the one where I don’t get $ quickly enough to join the program this year, and then the program falls through because too many other people have the same problem.  I am told that there are plans to try and get the PNWFS certificate program attached to a university of some sort in order to become accredited, so the banks will consider all students as “in-school” and maybe even allow students to obtain federal financial aid.  If this happens, I will do my best to go next year!

Recital program

I feel compelled to write about what I’m up to, compositionally.  I think it’s because my friend and fellow composition student, Reed, just posted a recital playlist on his own blog.  I am a copycat!

First and foremost is the project I’ve been kind of working on for most of the year: a miniature for each of the bridges that cross the Willamette in Portland.  The instrumentation is Violin, Cello, Flute, Clarinet, Piano, and Percussion.

As far as the movements go, Sellwood, Ross Island, Marquam, Hawthorne, Morrison, Burnside, Steel, Broadway, and Fremont are all finished (save some editing).  I’m partway through the movement for the 10th bridge, which got me interested in this project in the first place: the BNSF (Burlington Northern Santa Fe) Railway Bridge 5.1, which I didn’t know existed until last summer.  Last is the St. Johns movement, whose inspirational bridge is pretty and large, which means the movement should be as well.

Next up is a score for short film.  The film is 7:45 or so, and only about 3 minutes of it has any kind of a temp track set up by the director.  I’m not sure if that means I should just write music for the parts just with temp track or take the initiative and score the whole thing (something to ask the director).  Most likely the film will be projected during my recital, accompanied by live string quartet and piano.  Then, this summer, the performers will be recorded for the film’s actual release.  Exciting!

Those are the only two “I’m going to do these on my recital for sure” pieces I’ve programmed so far.  I have a few other ideas to write between now and then (June 5, come see my recital!)

Some possibilities include:

  • Sonata for Clarinet and Computer
  • Electronic music for short silent film (emphasis on public domain)
  • Percussion piece for non-standard instrumentation (details to follow!)
  • Electronic, Musique Concrete style piece using mouth samples
  • Viola duet

My target duration is an hour, let’s see if I make it!

In other news, I picked a new theme and title for my blog’s site, which was a very productive waste of time!  And I’m thinking about trying to get into a 1-year film scoring certificate program up in Seattle… mostly because Reed said he was going to do it, which is another copycatism (but would be totally awesome).