Thunder

Thunder

I composed Thunder as a backing track for guitarists. I get a ton of emails asking for backing tracks. Not all guitarists are composers and even less know how to mix a track, so I decided to send out a simple backing track and see how folks like it. So far the response is very good. I entered this track in an online contest (Tunecore) and won 2nd prize for ‘Best Guitar Bed’. Pretty cool.

 

Why did I name the track ‘Thunder’? I let my son Conner listen to the track and come up with a name. Conner said that the song reminded him of a thunder storm, so there ya have it. I love blue and this image is pretty cool. If you want a copy of the MP3, just shoot me an email. I’ll be happy to send you a copy.


Just Married

Sorry for the lapse in content. I’ve had a few life changes over the pass few months. I GOT MARRIED! SNAP! I got married in March and loving life. I don’t have as much time to write music right now, but that will change. My wife is a musician too (I know! right?). You’ll get to hear her beautiful vocals on some of the new tracks.

I have some new songs and other creative content in the works, but I’m taking a little time to enjoy being married. Plus, it’s a lot of work setting up a new home, moving stuff, etc… Yes, it’s worth it! Very happy and loving life! Warning: expect a few sappy love songs in the future. Until then, here’s a quick Flamenco piece that I love.

Groove

Groove is the very first (real) song that I ever recorded. I say ‘real’ because Groove is the first song that included bass and drums. All of my song previous to Groove were just guitar. Groove is also the first time that I used the ‘melody/bridge/chorus’ template to write a song. Thanks Mel Bay! Yes, I’m a Mel Bay guitarist (just like everyone else out there).

I wish that I had saved the gear that I used to record this track. They’re all classics now. I used a Tascam 4 track, a Boss drum machine and a Digitech 2101 (remember those!) for guitar. Ugg, I miss my 2101. I’m sure that the tone isn’t as good as I remember, but it was pretty cool back in the day:

Groove

I may re-record Groove at some point. I still like the basic concept behind the song, but the ‘percussion’ could use a little help (cough). I threw the track on LANDR for fun. Those old Tascams had a nice warm sound though. The mix isn’t too bad.

Red Dragon

~ Red Dragon ~

Red Dragon is a new track for my next album. I spent some time a few weeks ago learning Flamenco guitar picking techniques. The Flamenco pick attack was perfect for this song. Red Dragon has some of my cleanest guitar work yet. I love the runs and bouncy drums. Everything kinda sits on the beat, but stays loose.

I love the composition and the use of guitar tones to create something “non-guitar” sounding. The inspiration for this track is another bucket list item; The Chinese Red Dragon Festival. The last 3rd of the song has a nice outro. I push everything ‘over’ a key and let the harmony rub.

Red Dragon

 

 

 

New Album (iTunes, Google Play & Amazon)

My new album is posted in all 3 major digital music stores; iTunes, Google Play and Amazon Music. In addition, my new album is listed in over 200 other digital music stores. Availability varies from country to country. The price is the same on all 3 stores ($7.99). The prices varies a lot with the other stores. Mostly due to currency conversion. If you live in the US, stick to the major 3 digital music providers.

I didn’t advertise on Tunecore, but 50% of each LP sale goes to the “Love Without Boundaries Foundation“. Love Without Boundaries Foundation began in 2003 after a group of adoptive parents came together to help save the life of one tiny boy in China. Learn more about how LWB is touching the lives of thousands of children… one life at a time! Yes, I’m a sucker for kids, but that’s not a bad thing. Love Without Boundaries can feed one child for about $5 a month! I have no idea how they do that, but I’m happy to support such a wonderful group of people.

As of this posting my album has sold over 200 copies in less than 48 hours! I have amazing fans, thank you!

Thanks so much for all the support and kind emails. Here are the links:

new album

As always, if you need a different version or format, just shoot me an email. I have high resolution versions of all my songs (320 bit MP3). I can also provide a creative license if you want to use a song in a media project. Just send a link back to my site.

Thanks again!

Riff

New Album

New Album! (Nov 4 – release date)

Well, I finally published my new album. Probably should have happened a long time ago, but better late than never. My new album will be listed in every major online digital music store (50+ digital stores in total). Here is a “short” list of where to find my EP on Nov 4, 2014:

New Album

I’ll post links and prices as soon as my UPC goes live. Each store will have a slightly different price depending on commission, promotion costs, etc… However, the cost should be about $7. I’m half way finished with my second album. I should be able to release my second EP in early 2015. Feedback would be great. After you have a chance to hear the EP, please shoot me an email. I would love to hear what you think. Good or bad, it all helps. Thank you for listening.

The new album artwork is my creation (as usual). I took a picture of some cool rusted metal and add some text. Simple, but I like it. I think it fits the character of the songs. Not sure, but I knew that if I waited too long, I would never make up my mind, so there ya have it.

New Album

Thanks again for all those that listen to my music. Remember, if you purchased all of my “Instrumental Guitar” songs, you get a free copy of new EP. Just shoot me an email to remind me, but I’ll start sending out the free copies next week. Thanks again!

-Dan

Mystic Chant

Mystic Chant

[title size=”1″]Mystic Chant (in Distortion)[/title]

Mystic Chant is another contest entry. Basically, they (Sony) give you some loops (in this case vocals and a few beats) then the artist creates an original composition. I wasn’t going to try this one, but I love the vocal loops, so I gave it a shot and won another contest (big cheesy smile). More free guitar strings!

I love how Mystic Chant turned out. The mix is a little “wet”, but the guitars still punch through (and that’s what really matters!). I might use this song again and lay a nice acoustic lead over the top. I’ll post the alternate version if I like the sound. This song may need the heavy guitar to make it work. We’ll see.

Mystic Chant

A big (huge) thanks to Janni for the artwork. I had no idea what “Mystic Chant” was suppose to look like, so she suggested this photo. I think it works perfectly.

Kandinsky

Shredded Jazz (8oz bag)

This is another Jammr session recording. However, I spent some time mastering and editing this one. I added some vocal loops and I used Ozone to master all of the levels. We play the song live via Jammr, then and I capture it in Sony Acid. Pretty simple, but the creative process is fantastic. You can view the first 3 session recordings here:

[button link=”http://www.riffstermedia.com/solace-electra/” type=”icon” newwindow=”yes”] Check out Jammr session #1 – Solace Electra[/button] [button link=”http://www.riffstermedia.com/equilibrium/” type=”icon” newwindow=”yes”] Check out Jammr session #2 – Equilibrium[/button] [button link=”http://www.riffstermedia.com/funkster/” type=”icon” newwindow=”yes”] Check out Jammr session #3 – Funkster[/button]

 

This song has more of a blues vibe. We recorded all of the instrument tracks in one take. Then I came back and recorded the guitar harmony part for the chorus and added the vocal clips. I am finally starting to “gel” with these cats. They play extremely tight. Can’t get away with any rubbing with these guys.

Kandinsky

I chose this Kandinsky as my cover art (I can do that, because I’m not selling the song. Ha!). This is one of my favorite Kandinsky’s. The artwork is very musical. For me, the song is a musical version of this artwork (or something like that).

Funkster

Funkster

Funkster is my 3rd jam session with my new jazz head friends. I found a few musicians on Jammr. I usually have a basic concept or idea for a song, then we build from there. We play the song live and I capture it in Sony Acid. Pretty simple, but the creative process is fantastic. You can view the first 2 session recordings here:

[button link=” http://www.riffstermedia.com/solace-electra/” type=”icon” icon=”download” newwindow=”yes”] Check out Jammr session #1 – Solace Electra[/button]

[button link=” http://www.riffstermedia.com/equilibrium/” type=”icon” icon=”download” newwindow=”yes”] Check out Jammr session #2 – Equilibrium[/button]

There is not a lot of structure to this song. This song is a pure jam session from beginning to end. I ask them to keep the key in A (Dorian) and I worked out the melody lines in real-time. I kept the song/jam in one key to make the improvisation easier and it worked. This was a LOT of fun to play. I went into auto-pilot after the first few bars. It was interesting to hear the recording.

Funkster

Greg came up with the song title. I like it. Although, it sounds more like fusion than funk (at least to me). Anyhoo, I love the recording. One more for the set list, lol. . . Can’t wait until the next jam!

Equilibrium

Equilibrium

I found some Jazz heads on Jammr a few days ago. You can read about that jam session (here). Our second session produced this new song “Equilibrium“. I had the basic idea for the song worked out. Greg, Mike and Karla were able to fill in the gaps. I didn’t master this track. I left most the records pretty raw. I like the raw sound. I have the original tracks, so I might post a mastered version later, but for now I really like the way it sounds.

The song Equilibrium is about feeling really high or really low, then trying find a balance. That’s why the song changes from mellow to harsh, then back to mellow, etc. My life is a mess right now. Music is my art form and art usually imitates life. From personal experience; the only way to weather life’s many challenges is to find balance. Without balance, you can easily get sucked into a chaotic vortex.

Equilibrium

I like this picture. I like how one of the rocks has a couple nasty chips and dings. That’s how I see life. A few smooth rocks held together by a couple of broken pieces. When you put everything together it all balances out. We all have broken pieces inside.