Music compositions, improv, etc.

Welcome to a page about me and music ūüôā

Most recently, I wrote and performed a 2-minute Disney medley for a “Work From Home Talent Show” with Google.

And here’s a video of me playing a piano medley I arranged (2012).
15 song snippets in under two and a half minutes! See how many you can identify ūüôā ¬†Recorded in one of the music practice rooms at Google in Mountain View (thanks, Google!)

You can check out my YouTube channel for other videos, or just listen to a mishmash of stuff I’ve not yet sorted below ūüôā

  • On the Way”¬†— a pretty short piano composition.¬† Good: Higher fidelity!¬†Bad: Recorded it with my 15+ year old synthesizer.¬† Need to upgrade one of these days…
  • Western Clouds”¬†— a 5 minute one-take AdamImprov session (July 10, 2010)
  • In The Heights”¬†medley and just slightly different¬†alternate take¬†(July 10, 2010)
  • Your Love is Finer than Life” — my 5 minute improv’d¬†tribute to a hymn I first heard sung by a Royal High School Choir I was¬†an accompanist for a short time in the 90s.¬† Dedicated to the¬†outstanding former choral director of that group, Jim Wilbur, and the¬†amazing kids who were a part of the choir.¬†Listen to the choir’s short-but-beautiful version.¬†(August 4, 2009)
  • Sesame Street¬†Theme” — a 1.5 minute semi-jazzy version (August 3, 2009)
  • Amazing Grace”¬†— my 5 minute ballad-to-gospel/jazz version (August 2, 2009)
  • Nine out of¬†Line” — another 5 minute one-take AdamImprov session (July 30,¬†2009)
  • Some Bach Piece¬†— a page from a piece I learned more than 20 years ago (I have no idea
    how I still remember it!) (July 29, 2009)

A bit about the music and the recordings below

I have composed and performed all the music listed on this page, except¬†where otherwise noted. Sadly, I haven’t written much in the last decade or two <sigh>… but hopefully I’ll get off my ass and be musical again one of these days.

Do¬†note that many of the clips are recorded from cassette tapes or¬†third-generation copies, so sound quality isn’t as nice¬†as I’d like.

Anyway, enough pre-babble… let’s get on with the show!

(relatively) Newer stuff

INSTRUMENTAL STUFF (recorded on my Ensoniq TS-12 Music Workstation synth)
UPDATE:¬† Sorry, experiencing a bit of technical difficulties here, having to do some rejiggering to make the music links work better.¬† Thanks for your patience ūüôā

  • Repeatedly¬†Confused turKey
    (November 21, 2001) — An experimental¬†piece, but not as bad as it sounds (so to speak). Some strange elements¬†include the continually repeating ‘C’ key throughout (until the very¬†last measure), overlapping meters and themes, and so on. Definitely¬†a bit rough, but still interesting I think. Also, admittedly, a bit of distortion due to bad sound-level choices. Ack… sorry about that!

  • After Dinner¬† (1995) — I wrote this long piece — you guessed¬†it —¬† literally after dinner. Despite the relatively formulaic¬†chord structure and stereotypical ballad elements, it remains my most popular composition (though, admittedly, that’s not saying much :P).
  • MBD¬†(1995) — This is a short improv cut, written while I was trying to show a friend the beauty of track layering. Problem was… I couldn’t think of anything to layer well on top of this, so it stayed as is. Incidentally, it’s called MBD, because this futzing around took place on my birthday.
  • Coffee¬†for Silke¬†(1997) — Written for my friend Silke while hanging out with her in Mannheim, Germany.¬† Yes, there’s a slightly goofy (and intended) pulse shift… emulating the kick one gets after a bit o’ coffee.

  • Heike¬†In the Park¬†(1997) —¬†I had my friend Heike over for dinner, and as luck would have it, my cooking attempts fell flat.¬† My only shot at redemption was writing a funny piecelet (a small music composition) for her, and I did so, in the happy likeness of “The Simpsons”… and under 15 minutes, too ūüôā
  • Weather¬†(1996 – unfinished) — Here’s a chance to hear a work in progress (MusicIdea actually hatched way back in ’92! — see earlier incarnation below).
  • Silliness¬†Untitled¬†(1998) — Just what the title says.¬† This was done in one-take, then speeded up.
  • Times Changing¬†Hmm… I actually don’t remember when I wrote this thing, but I think the changing meters are fun. I used to drive novice musician buddies nuts by daring them to figure out the time signature :P.

(comparative) Oldies but goodies

MY OLDER STUFF — mostly done on my no-longer-owned¬†Roland W-30 music workstation synthesizer

You’ll notice that a lot o’ these pieces have pretty short titles. That’s¬†because it was tedious typing in names via the music keyboard of the synth. Also, you’ll note that many of the “pieces” listed below¬†are pretty darn short. That’s ’cause they’re just “sketches,” or “music¬†ideas.” If you particularly like a sketch, please¬†let me know, so I’ll be more inclined to flesh it out :).

All the stuff below was written/performed in 1993 or earlier.
New Age’ish / Ballad’y stuff

  • 5-4-J¬†–¬†I originally wrote this song for a girl named Jen, but never played it for her. Long story. But anyway, the title is a play on the meter (5/4) and the intent (for “J”).
  • Wind¬†–¬†Not¬†much to say about this one other than it’s sort of what you’d hear in a sad-film score.
  • Softly¬†– Very¬†short one! And sort of soft (imagine that).

  • Road¬†– Another¬†sad-mooded one. Middle/end parts are better than the opening :).
  • SOD – This¬†is a rather short and weird, but still cool small ditty.

More upbeat stuff

  • First – I’ve¬†played around with this a bunch (though I only have this version recorded).
  • BOB – Okay,¬†this is just a plain silly one. And… see if you can guess what¬†musical influence I was under when I improv’d this ditty. This piece (like “Silliness Untitled” above) was done in one take, then speeded up.
  • Dead – Okay,¬†hardly what one would think of as an “upbeat” title, but¬†it’s definitely not mellow.
  • Jam – I¬†stole the drum track, but the rest is mine.
  • Saxy¬†Me! – I rather like this one, and am thinking about expanding it… but I’m not sure where.
  • S-SK – What¬†does this title stand for? I haven’t the slightest.
  • Harsh – Kinda¬†what the title suggests.
  • Who¬†Says There’s Time?
    (original draft) — I was doing some writing¬†for the school musical theme show (Northwestern’s Waa-Mu yearly extravaganza)… and I wrote three pieces… two of them serious-type numbers, and this third one as a joke. Take a wild guess which one got picked, goofy lyrics and all. I was pretty embarrassed, but amused ūüôā Here’s the original silly draft that I submitted, and below, you can hear how it cameout.
  • Who¬†Says There’s Time? – (orchestra / performance version)
    Another fella did the arrangement of this and I wasn’t one of the guys performing this brilliant masterpiece.

Theme music I wrote for a friend’s class project sitcom,¬†called “The Good Life.”

(mostly “electric guitar” and “piano”)

  • Main Theme¬†–¬†Okay, you’ll note one main thing… that I am really lousy¬†with synth percussion. I hope to get better at this soon, though.
  • Themelets: gl1 gl2 gl3 gl4 gl5 gl6 gl7 gl8 gl9 gl10 gl11 (missing or miscounted) gl12 gl13
    Mini “pieces” on the main theme for interludes and scene¬†changes.
  • Move It!¬†–¬†One of the larger themelets, and indeed, one of my favorites¬†for whatever reason. Back in the days of answering machines, I once used this as the backdrop for my outgoing message :).

Music with “guitar” and “flute”

  • Bird – Written and arranged by me sometime around 1989… sappy ballad¬†type ūüôā
  • Scarborough Fair – By Simon and Garfunkel, my arrangement¬†and performance.
  • Men of Music – A re-arrangement of an original piece I wrote for a serenading men’s chorus.
  • My Country ‘Tis of Thee – The famous patriotic song… but arranged and performed in a more mellow¬†fashion by me.
  • Meadow – Very short and upbeat interlude.
  • Weather – The beginnings of an original composition… hoping to actually¬†work more on this one.

What do you think?