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