Monday, October 17, 2011

Freddy the 17th

Here's some spooky Halloween music in 17/8 (a rough draft sketch) to get you in the mood today...

Spookin' it ODD,
Odd Time Obsessed Tune in


Tuesday, October 11, 2011

A Bitchin' Martyr - Brewin' up some mixed meter from back in the day

So I had this band back in the day, which I formed in my last year of Berklee in the 1990-91. It was comprised of wicked talented musicians all from Berklee except the drummer (amazing player and was in a blues band with him too). We played odd metered prog metal in Boston in the early-mid 90s. We had everything from diehard cult fans to blank stares to "Betsey what are you playing? I can't tap my foot to this." But one thing for sure we had a blast playing and we wrote some cool sh*t. This has been the only metal band where our writing process almost solely consisted of charts. In other words, we wrote the song, wrote out the charts for each player, and we read the charts as we played the songs as a band in rehearsal. Sort of like the pros... ie. in big bands, jazz etc... I've never come close to being in this situation in the metal genre again - I usually get what-the-hell-are-you-talkin'- about indignant looks and oh we play by feel retorts (and the only thing they are feeling is 4) when I mention charts, or even time signatures.

Anywho, here is a song that we all (Michelle Daniels - vocals, Dan Gustafson - drums, Steve Coyne - guitar, James Carter - guitar, Betsey Stephens (moi) - bass) wrote together and was recorded at Emerson College in Boston around 1992/3 - live to two track. I think this was our only take (you can tell in the solo). But the point is... its in lots of meters:

The Martyr - Bitches Brew intro/interludish part/ending: 10/4, 9/4 Verse: 5/4 with 15/8 feel PreChorus: 4/4, 6/4 Solo: 11/8

Wouldn't we have sounded REALLY cool if we had an excellent producer and maybe some more takes??? but nonetheless, I think it was badass at the time. And that's not it... I have included a special treat for y'all... a live BB pic on our MA tour (c.1993) Yes that's me on bass (white shirt), Betsey Stephens a female bass player, wasn't into the bra stage show attire, hahahah ahh..

Still Brewin' it ODD,
Odd Time Obsessed Tune in


Thursday, October 6, 2011

Who Knew Pt. V - I Say a Little Prayer for You

In 1967 Burt Bacharach, Dionne Warwick & Hal David wrote this hit "I Say a Little Prayer for You" and in their hippy hit making process this trio happen to stick a bar of 10/4 into the verses (every one of them) and .... and... yup there is more... a bar of 11/4 in the choruses (everyone of those too). Whahooo, I wish the hit makers these days weren't so oddmeteriteaphobes.

For a good twenty or so years I have been listening to this song without the meter use dawning on me. Who knew? Well I am sure many of you astute listeners have figured this Motown oddness out a long time ago, like Azna, a listener who just gave me this hint today. If it wasn't for her who knows if I would have ever noticed. Thanks Azna! I love when you guys shake me up like that.

My favorite version is with Ms. Franklin (check out the choreography, and I wish I could check out the band).

Verse 4/4, 4/4, 10/4 (4+2+4), 4/4, 4/4
Chorus 11/4 (4+3+4)
Bridge 4/4, 8/4 (6+2)

I say a little ODDness for you,
Odd Time Obsessed Tune in


Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Magnetizing a 3-3-2-2 Medicinal Monster

Happy month of TEN to you - feel the healing properties of 3322.

Keepin' it ODD,
Odd Time Obsessed Tune in


Monday, October 3, 2011

Derek Sherinian - Oceana

Okay I am just gonna call this guy Derek Sevenian...

Well in case you don't know who this cat is (ehemmmm which I didn't until my frenchy oddmeterite, David Taugis clued me in on this), he is a elite rock pro keyboardist, that's played with so and so and you know who...

Hey and this is his 7th solo album... coincidence?

Check out the tracks..

5 Elements - yup you guessed it... 5/4
Mercury 7 - you are so smart... 7/8
Mulholland - 7/4, 15/8(I think)
Euphoria - 6/4, 4/4
Ghost Runner - (thought it was a Eye of the Tiger cover at first) 4/4
El Camino Diablo - 7/8, 4/4
I heard that - 4/4
Seven Sins - no not again... 7/8
Oceana - 4/4

If you really, really want to learn how to play in 7 - listen to this album, play/shred along, you won't be bored. This would make an extremely effective Music Minus One (instrumental karaoke) CD. The recording is pristine, lots of layers to be interested in as you are locking in the varying grooves and along with all melodic keyboards and guitar noodling the bass is loud and clear and most beautiful sounding.

Shred with Sevenian and you will be a ProInSeven.

Keepin' it ODD,
BetZe Thirteensky
Odd Time Obsessed Tune in


Friday, September 30, 2011

Crashin' out the last day of the month of NINE

Okay last day of the month of NINE - soon to be TEN which I am way more comfortable in... ehemmmmmm... So I am trying to get a resonate with NINE, but for now, I will just admire it from a distance, don't think its in my blood, but I appreciate the 9blood that out there..... even if its embedded in egoinstrumentalrock...

So what did you think? oh... same as me? a good song to practice to, to get a beginning feel of NINE, as in 8/4 + 1/4 or 4/4 + 5/4 or some 12/3/6s? great - hit the woodshed then...

Thanks again to my Frenchy oddmeterite David Taugis for having me notice this NINE.

Keepin' in ODD,
Odd Time Obsessed Tune in


Thursday, September 29, 2011

Loudness - Complication

For some strange reason I've been cravin' some old skool metal oddness lately.... hummm, not much to choose from in that department (sans Fates Warning).... and all of a sudden along comes my Frenchy odd meterite David Taugis sayin' hello... its not all in four... duhhahh looky here...

Ahhhh Loudness, I just want to hear you loud and odd...!
Intro 9/4 + 7/4 Verse 3/4 Chorus 6/4, 6/4, 5/4, 4/4, 4/4, 6/4, 6/4, 5/4, 3/4 Interlude 1 6/8, 6/8, 6/4, 7/4, 6/4 V same, CH same, Interlude extravaganza: whole band sing a long 6/4 + 7/4, bass 6/4, 6/4, 7/4, 6/4, 7/4 slow fluff 4/4 - back to the Intro same, sing a long interlude same, ending 5/8ish... come on... tap along,,,, its not that hard, but watch out for those varying tempos...

I remember back in the late 80s seeing Loudness at the Paradise in Boston and they tried that involving the audience with repeat us rhythm thing... well I don't remember the exact rhythm but they sure stumped many a Bostonian Metalheads... it was pretty hilarious, they finally gave up... but not totally, I think they felt bad and thought that it would do us good if we had a drum lesson or two, so they threw out a very large Zildjian symbol into the audience (what happen to just plain drum sticks?) and a thought they were going to decapitate an innocent headbanger -

Give it to me LOUD and ODD,
-BetZe13 Tune in


Monday, September 19, 2011

A Greasy 19 with Zappa

Have I told you lately that I Love Frank Zappa and his mates? I especially love when they groove in 19/16 and with such perverse persuasion, you just gotta laugh.

If you have been feeling like something has been missing in your life, its probably that you haven't felt a 19/16 like this yet.

The Groove starts around 3:13.

And you gotta see the performance version even though they've cut the 19/16 section.

Keepin' it Greasy,
BetZe13 Tune in


Thursday, September 15, 2011

Freak Kitchen - Nobody's Laughing - Swedish Pop Metal in 5

(Really? Nobody's Laughing? What about giggling?)
Okay, now I can't stop giggling again... This time it not a french 5 but a Swedish 5 complete with its a white green-screen, long haired semi-tattooed boys trying to look mean while playing pop... and ohhhhh electrical taped-out male nipples (a Swedish statement?)... okay this is not the point again..

The point is that's Sweden's answer to Nickleback is playing a WHOLE song in 5/4... and its popular and it gets radio play... GOOD...

Thank you GuitarSean of Strangeland for pointing me to this, I think I would've blanked out to safety before I heard the 5.

fnissande i fem,
Odd Time Obsessed Tune in


Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Calogero - French Pop in Five

I can't help it... but I giggle through out this video... rude American I am... maybe... but it just makes me giggle. If I paid attention to the 8 years of french I was forced to take in my formative years then I might know what they were saying. But I don't... Alls I know is there is a bass player who sings and talker/rapper and the apparent drummer/producer/marketer/actor/some dude that is running,,, running away.... oh the shadow and light drama... but this is not the point...

The point is, this is french pop in 5/4 with almost 2mil hits on YouTube. I don't know much about this band Calogero, but super boulot pour jouer dans 5 à la masse.

I would've posted the video Calogero - L'ombre et la lumière (clip officiel) but the embed was disabled so here is the link: and to their stuff:

Thank you David Taugis for tuning me into ces chats...

une giggly ne signifiant pas être impoli impairs américaine,
Odd Time Obsessed Tune in


Monday, September 12, 2011

Vicariously enjoying 5/4

Lately I have been getting into playing/writing (coming soon) in 5/4. Not 5/8 where its subdivided 2-3 or 3-2 but a straight 5, as in 4/4 + 1 = 5/4. This is a cool groove meter where its easy not to sound 'odd' if that's what you are going for. Feel this FIVE and see how Tool are masters of making the meters flow.

Keepin' it ODD,
BetZe13 Tune in


Saturday, September 10, 2011

A Plasmoidy Ozric NINE

I love these guys, flute (which rests for this song) and all.. and even though usually stay in common time, its cool when they trip into the aurally odd dimension.

Check out the intro in nine which sounds like 7+2 to me... building tension, building tension, then relief (for some ears) to 8/8 and returns to 9/8 for a bit later, just to stir things up a bit.

Ah now I feel Plasmoidy,
BetZe13 Tune in


Friday, September 9, 2011

Jambin' a nice NINE

I like what Tool does with this 9/8, a 4+5 pattern, and to break it up a bit, there is also some 12/8, 18/8(8/8 + 10/8).

Did you feel it? I mean, reaaalllly feel it?, that nine melding with your etheric vibration, altering your brainwaves and opening your third eye? If not, listen to it until see those double-iris-eyed lizards, for they are there right in-front of you.

Nine openin' your mind.

Keepin' it ODD,
-BetZe13 Tune in


Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Seedin' my brain in 9 with Kreator

I can't help it
I just LOOOOVE Metal
I'm a Metalhead, I'm a Metalhead
and I wanna Rockn' Rolllll

Well especially if its raw, chunky and in 9/8... ha

Okay its in 4/4 too, but thank you Kreator for planting this brainseed. \m/

Odd Time Obsessed Tune in


Sunday, September 4, 2011

A Lovin' 9/4 Moondog to ya

Today my friend, is your lucky day, that is, if you want to find love.... but only if you howl at the nine times at 4:00 AM for true love PM for love right now... but you have to be wearing a Viking hat and listening to this song for 9 times exactly when the hand strikes this hour.

Moondog is a rare artist that writes from his inner core with absolutely no distractions that I can detect. Today, September 4th, I want you to know that he is saying 'I Love You' in 9/4 with an eighth note swing feel (accents sound like 5/8 divided 32). This is not considered 9/8, but maybe a 18/8. Although Moondog is a master of rhythmic rounds, let us not sound too geeky and keep it at a 9/4.

Lovin' it ODD,
Odd Time Obsessed Tune in


Saturday, September 3, 2011

Peter Eggers - Compilation CD

Sometimes, okay well most of the time, I dream of having an unlimited stream of cash to fund certain artists (including myself) so that they (we) could just write and produce. Well, of course I would bully them into writing in 13 for me (part of the contract) but once that's out of the way, then its free reign. Now Peter would be in this category. I have the fantasy set up (not that's these cats don't have their own money, but I am talking unlimited) - him, David Rose (electric violin, fred, Transit Express), Gerry Brown (drums, Stanley Clarke), John Lee (bass, Larry Coryell) hit the record button and groove it until you can't no more. They are pure magic together. Then to continue my fantasy, I sit in (bass) and be even more fantastic... hahahaha... hey, don't interrupt my fantasy....

Peter Eggers is quite the talented composer/performer and this aforementioned magic is displayed and proven on his first two tracks (but not limited to) of this compilation. You just have to check this out. Now, the other compositions are keyboard based and take you on varied journeys, evoking emotions you forgot you had (this is not easy to do). And I swear I have heard some of these before in the theater or TV back in the day... hummmm, and I probably didn't catch the meter use,,,, too enveloped in the journey...

Peter's compositions on this compilation:
Natural Disasters - 4/4, 7/4 (David Rose, Gerry Brown, John Lee)
Fault Lines - 4/4 FUNKY! (David Rose, Gerry Brown, John Lee)
Bitonal - 4/4 Built for Two (David Rose)
Thrill Junkies - 4/4
Wishful Thinking - 4/4
Living on Dreams - 4/4
Dust to Dust - 3/4, 2/4
Extreme Measures - 5/4, 4/4, 3/4
Alien Dance Party - 6/4, 4/4
Holding Pattern - 4/4
Too Good To Be True - 4/4, 7/8
A Fish Discovers Water - 4/4

Now go Check Peter out on and
while I align with my cash flow fantasy..

Keepin' it ODD,
BetZe13 Tune in


Friday, September 2, 2011

Anybody got any 9 that's just naggin' to show off?

Nine is not a meter that grooves with me naturally. I need some inspiration... hint, hint... Got any? oh good, then send them along, would love to hear what you got... and so would many others... Send me your true 9, doesn't have to be all in 9, but if its a real 9 (9/4, 9/8, 9/16, 9/32, 9/64 etc) then this is the time and place to show it off.

Send your embeddable links (SoundCloud, MySpace, YouTube, etc) on ova...

Waitin' for 9,
BetZe13 Tune in


Thursday, September 1, 2011

Happy Psychedelphia Month of NINE

I am quite partial to these odd months, May, July, Sept, Nov, I even incorporated the 13/20 calendar so I could have that 13th moon. Sept usually is my least favorite odd month, it reminds me of going back to school and winter coming. But now that I live in Las Vegas, NV I am welcoming the winter - move over 112F in the shade, I welcome the 70F Winter back. Yeah for 9th month.

So lets celebrate today and invoke this month with some Deadphish in 9, aka Psychedelphia's Nano.
Psychedelphia is a progressive jazz fusion band quartet out of, yup you guested it, PA USA. A while back I received their demo and put them on rotation. I am not sure if its the same line up, but they are certainly still grooving. Many people have tried to bring out the dormant Deadphish in me. It got to a point where I just thought it wasn't in me at all. But that to Psychedelphia they brought it out with 9,7 or 13. Right on!

Check out their psychedelaoddness

Keepin' it ODD,
BetZe13 Tune in


Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Avatar - Hands CD Review

Avatar (no this came out way before the movie) is an World Fusion instrumental quartet from Melbourne Australia consisting of 2 acoustic guitars, bass & drums and guest accordion. Accordion? yes thats right afrobraziflamencuban odd grooves with accordion too, you gotta have chops for this.

Avatar - Hands (2008)
Baba Eva - 7/4, 9/4
Mango - 5/4, 4/4, 6/4
(Tango with 5, way cool)
Ryans Dance - 3/4, 5/8, 2/4, 4/4
From Over the Fence - 4/4
Mercedes - 4/4, 3/4, 7/8, 2/4, 3/4, 6/4, 8/8
(my favorite, especially drum ostinato)
No, Really 4/4
Jai Ya - 4/4
Ceret - 4/4
Song for Piyarat - 4/4
Stephanie - 4/4

Have you ever heard a Tango with 5? Well hurry up and get their CD. It sounds so natural, it should be a requirement for all the dance contests and I would certainly dance that with Ryan. Now I wouldn't usually put Mercedes in a favorite category (only Mustangs) but for this CD I have to make an exception, this Mercedes grooves especially at the drum ostinato,,, yahhh. Keep it coming Avatar, next time a Sevillana in 7 please.

Check out their worldly oddness at

Keepin' it ODD,
BetZe13 Tune in


Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Strategy by Strategy Arizona Prog

Strategy is an prog instrumental trio based out of Scottsdale AZ, bass, drums, guitar. They don't hang much in 4 and I like that. Here are the tracks:

Ice Crisis - 11/8, 7/8, 5/4, 4/4
Phase Shift - 10/8, 6/4
Stream of Consciousness - 7/8, 6/8, 10/8
(that my kind of consciousness with some 13 added of course)
Back to the Cafe Collapso - 10/8, 7/8, 11/4, 9/4
Sliding Backwards - 11/8, 7/8, 10/8
Parallel Universe - 7/8, 10/8, 9/8, 9/4, 6/8
(one part Rhythm in 9/4 and melody in 9/8 very parallel indeed)
Odd Meter Mayhem - 15/8, 7/4
Clean Up on Aisle 6 - 6/8 15/8
Track Rabbit - 5/4, 4/4
(play along with this groove, its a good one to learn 5 in)

I really dig how they use these meters and never bore the ear with constantly changing grooves. This reminds me of the yesteryears of YES sans that Rick-o-sound (that I am so partial to), meets King Crimson but is missing a very expensive producer and many many hours of playing/touring together. This is a good CD and they have the potential to be great. So don't stop and keep the music coming Strategy and one in 13 next time please.

You can check them out at

Keepin' it ODD,
BetZe13 Tune in


Monday, August 29, 2011

Electronic Black Dog in Straight Four

A while back, I bought this CD in the hopes that I could hear just a bit of electronic oddness. I know I should turn to 'Intelligent Dance Music' but I just wanted a wee bit of smarts... Nope, didn't get it on this one. Thanks to ISSA, this version has none of that silly 7/8 drum beat. Although its a pretty cool mix, I was mad I actually bought this.

Keepin' it ODD,
BetZe13 Tune in


Sunday, August 28, 2011

Looking for odd meter in the wrong places...

Just a little FYI - in case you happen to run into these CDs, they don't have any odd meter on them, at all. No mind over common meter and no 3,3,3,2,2 in the slightest.

I can hope eh???

Keepin' it ODD,
BetZe13 Tune in


Friday, August 5, 2011

Y'all like 7-8 eh?

And the winner is...
Yup, 7-8 it is... Is it that circular feeling you get when you play it or the skipped ahead to something better OCD feeling that gets ya? or maybe its because its July or you still have that Traci Lords song in your head... or something else totally different... oh do tell

Haha Thank you everyone for voting... and perhaps next time I will have a cool prize.

Keepin' it ODD,
BetZe13 Tune in


Friday, July 8, 2011

Celebrate 7-8 with Traci Lords

Happy 7/8!

One of my favorite songs totally in 7/8 is titled "Good N Evil" on Traci Lords "1000 Fires" electronica CD. Here is a sample of the whole album and this oddness is located 1:00 - 1:27.

Cool CD cover eh?

Keepin' it ODD,
BetZe13 Tune in


Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Omen - The Axeman, old skool power metal with a bit of 5

This spring I had the great honor of playing some dates (bass) in Europe with Leather Leone's new project SledgeLeather. We played with many old skool power metal bands almost everything was in 4, but it prompted me to dig some more.
And this is what I found:

Right on Omen! with some 5 in the verse. They are still kickin' it live in Europe too. Old Skool power metal is not known for odd meter use, but one slips in every now and then and when it does... its time to bow down to the axeman!

Keepin' it ODD,
Odd Time Obsessed Tune in


Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Jeff Beck - A Blast From the East

What Jeff Beck playing odd meters? Just when I though he would never do a thing to win my heart, or get off my nerves, Gijs Verhijke, an astute odd meter listener, helped to change my disdain. He alerted me to a Beck oddmeterism 'Blast From the East' that he actually did not write (Tony Hymas did), but grooves it. Come to find out, he has some other ones too that go out of four, but that is for a different discussion.

This is what Gijs had to say:

"Spotted this one on his live DVD (live @ Ronnie Scott). If you ask me it's one bar of 7/8, two bars of 8/8 and then one bar of 7/8 again. Or you could argue that it's 15/8 alternatively but it clearly alternates between 7/8 and 8/8 if you ask me."

Well thank you Mr. Beck for chosing to playing this number, Tony Hymas for writing it, Jennifer Batten for cool effects and technique and the taken for granted rhythm section for making this groove appear to be easy to play.

But more importantly, thank you Gijs for spotting this one for us, I am grooving on it and I do believe you are totally correct on your 7/8 8/8 hypothosis.

Keep spottin' the odd ones for us,

Keepin' it ODD,
BetZe13 Tune in


Monday, February 7, 2011

Solitude Aeturnus - Awakening in 6/4 - ish

Back in the day, I got turned on to this band (1994-ish) Solitude Aeturnus (alone forever?) - Still to this day Rob Lowe (no, no, no, think deeper and wiser)takes me home. I am talking, my real home. He inspires this question: What makes you want to be a singer anyways, is it the quest to have your voice to be heard, your ego quenched, your is it an unstoppable force? You have to do it? Or connect with the souls you really know? Dunno.. (but, for him, I think its the later) Well Rob and I go way way back,... monks I say, I recognize that voice. So why the hell am I talking about it in a blog about odd metered music. Okay, its a stretch, so this song isn't really odd - but it adds the extra two beats hence 6/4 or to be bold 10/4 makes me a bit awakened. Love the flawless musicianship, tempo change and the ending. But still, of course, there is a part of me that would like them to personify 7 & 13.

I am waiting,
BetZe13 Tune in


Thursday, January 13, 2011

It takes a Village... for me to notice Naggin' Nimbus

So this morning I got an anonymous tip that there was some Hip Hop oddness lurking about that I have yet detected. Well let me tell you, it takes a village to feed an odd time obsession because these nuggets usually don't get a chance to permeate our collective 4/4 trance.

Let me introduce this song to you,,,, are you ready???

Naggin' Nimbus by Busdriver - 5/8

First of all, I wish I thought of that song title, and second of all I wish I thought of that artist name and third of all, I wish I wrote a song has the feel of My Favorite Thing is to Take Five talking about cotton candy clouds. damn... too late...

(Dear Busdriver, please write more in 7 and 13. Thank you)

Thank you Anonymous for shining the light on this gem and thank you Busdriver for bravin' beat boundaries.

Naggin' to find me some more oddness (hint, hint)
-BetZe13 Tune in


Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Does Anybody Care About Time? - Chicago

Does anybody really know what time it is?
Does anybody really care?
Yes, I do - 5/8, 4/4 (3/8 for a second) and so does the nice people who wrote this sheet music

Keepin' it ODD,
BetZe13 Tune in


Saturday, January 8, 2011

Bass Groove in 19-8

Here's a diddy in 19 for ya... divided 8-7-4

Find more artists like BetZe at Myspace Music

Keepin' it ODD,
BetZe13 Tune in