CD4: NextSteps Project Stage 2: “Expectations”
About the music
Most of the tracks on this CD are played real time and are unedited in terms of cutting and pasting. What you hear is what’s been played. It allows me to both seek for new sounds, melodies and songs and to record any spontaneous song that pops up, depending on my mood. It’s a great way to reach a professional recording by relatively simple methods and tools and in a relatively short period of time.
And don’t forget: by recording four tracks simultaneously you experience the effect of direct stimulant on what’s being played. This compared to recording track by track in which case already recorded tracks are not able to ‘respond’ to what’s happening at that moment. Ultimately, by the way, it is my ambition to play with “living” musicians and my latest work makes it easier to say, “this is what I want to do” and to relate that to others.
During the course of about three-quarters of a year I recorded about 30 minidisks with over 300 tracks that were the bases of these new solo CD’s. Hopefully it will give you an impression of what I like in music, which styles I prefer and which combinations of styles are possible. The sky is the limit, folks!
This fourth CD, Expectations, consists of jazz, blues and fusion compositions. Some are in a duo fashion (bass and piano) others have the full array of possible sound and rhythm combinations provided by the RD700. The styles will vary from “digital acoustic Jazz” with muted trumpet, saxophone sections, acoustic bass and drums to more contemporary fusion type compositions with fretless bass and Fender Rhodes.
In a few cases I have chosen to extend the basic four tracks with additional tracks added in the studio. You can learn more about that in “about the songs” below. All in all you might be able to, at least that is my intention, understand what kind of music I like to play and in addition to that, what kind of musicians I seek to recreate some of that atmosphere.
CD4: NextSteps Series No2: Expectations
|01 The Base Song||(B.Flos)||5:24||[OTR]|
|02 Split Second Groove||(B.Flos)||4:46||[OTR]|
|03 Thoughts On Miles||(B.Flos)||8:01||[OTR]|
|04 Strike One||(B.Flos)||6:02||[OTR/+]|
|05 Remember Seven Days Away||(B.Flos)||6:09||[OTR]|
|07 Those Nasty Little Shepherds||(trad.)||2:26||[OTR]|
|08 A Night In Tunisia||(J. Gillespie)||6:27||[OTR/+]|
|09 Ahead Of Schedule||(B.Flos)||7:17||[MTR/-]|
|10 Yellow Inspiration||(B.Flos)||6:53||[MTR/+]|
|12 Dark Matter Nebula||(B.Flos)||4:03||[OTR/+]|
|13 All Horns Blue||(M. Davis / B.Flos)||4:18||[OTR]|
Audio track samples:
Split Second Groove:
Thoughts on Miles:
Those Nasty Little Shepherds:
Ahead of Schedule:
About the songs
As explained before, the NextSteps Series Solo Project is based on preparation work in my mini studio. Most of the songs are pre-recorded on mini disc and subsequently pre-mastered in a professional studio. During the course of the project I have chosen to add tracks to particular songs to complete my original idea’s of the compositions or even to completely compose and record a new song in the main studio. This is explained with the [prefixes] in the text of each song below:
|[OTR]||One Time Recording of the complete composition in real time: pre-mix set in the mini studio, no tracks added, no editing within the composition apart from pre-mastering.|
|[OTR/ ]||One Time Recording of the core song: limited tracks added in the main studio, possible editing within the composition (introductions, endings).|
|[MTR/-]||Multi Track Recording: based on basic track(s) recorded in my studio, multiple tracks added, possible editing within the composition (introductions, endings).|
|[MTR/ ]||Multi Track Recording ‘from scratch’: track by track composed, arranged, recorded and pre-mastered in the main studio.|
1 The Base Song (B.Flos) 5:24 [OTR]
This composition is a ‘duo’ between contra bass and piano. The bass basically sings its bass line whilst the piano improvises around it. I love the digital acoustic bass of the RD700: it can be played with a soft and hard touch and you can hear the strings hitting the basses body. This song is also known as “Expectations”.
2 Split Second Groove (B.Flos) 4:46 [OTR]
This is an original composition that I composed in the early 80’s and has evolved somewhat over the years. The acoustic bass together with the Fender Rhodes proves to be a fine combination in swing.
3 Thoughts On Miles (B.Flos) 8:01 [OTR]
This song is a good example of the endless possibilities of the Roland RD700. It was recorded one time / real time, no tracks added: what you hear is how it has been played. It is a combination of acoustic bass, muted trumpet, horns section and jazz drum kit.
4 Strike One (B.Flos) 6:02 [OTR/ ]
I have recorded the acoustic guitar in my studio, than added the bass lines and Fender improvisations in the main studio. No drums are edited but you should be able to feel the beat in your head when listening to this blues.
5 Remember Seven Days Away (B.Flos) 6:09 [OTR]
Like Thoughts On Miles this is a one time recording as it was improvised at the time. It is performed in a 6/8 beat and uses the acoustic bass, jazz drums, acoustic piano and the horn section. I have lightly based in on Seven Days Away as recorded on the CD ‘Recognition’, see below.
6 Recognition (B.Flos) 6:00 [OTR/ ]
Another song in the same setting as Strike One. This time it is based on the original composition Recognition which is in its turn based on the chords of Autumn Leaves, recorded on my first CD ‘Recognition’ with acoustic jazz trio Triceps in 1996. I really like this combination of instruments so I recorded a second song in the same style.
7 Those Nasty Little Shepherds (trad.) 2:26 [OTR]
This nice Dutch Christmas traditional based on ‘De Herdertjes Lagen Bij Nachte’ first appeared on my solo CD NextSteps in 2000. I entered the international Jazz Connect Internet Competition with it and re-recorded it for this album as well. The composition has been re-arranged and I used a new drum setting to make it sparkle even more. The jazz scat voices never seize to amaze and amuse me!
8 A Night In Tunisia (J. Gillespie) 6:27 [OTR]
This composition starts with an acoustic bass solo to free the path of the Fender Rhodes playing the always-entertaining melody of A Night In Tunisia. It is a beautiful standard and I have aimed to preserve the melody, only mildly re-arranging it. The song has been cut back in length but that has been the only editing activity: what you hear is again how it has been improvised on the spot.
9 Ahead Of Schedule (B.Flos) 7:17 [MTR/-]
This fusion type composition has been composed, recorded and pre-mastered in the main studio. Only the introduction part has been pre-recorded. It is based on the jazz blues but the fretless base and fusion drums give it the kick it needs.
10 Yellow Inspiration (B.Flos) 6:53 [MTR/ ]
Another fusion type composition, this time completely ‘born and raised’ in the main studio. If you listen carefully you will notice that the song is based on the chords of the standard jazz composition What Is This Thing Called Love. It is a 6-track recording with solo entries of the synthesizer lead, the Fender Rhodes and the fretless bass.
11 Downstream (B.Flos) 4:38 [OTR]
This is a latin fusion type of song, real time pre-recorded and only pre-mastered in the main studio. The drum track allows me to switch from free improvisation to the latin style variation after the cross over.
12 Dark Matter Nebula (B.Flos) 4:03 [OTR/ ]
This fusion-blues composition gives a lot of space to the synthesizer lead based on the roaring bass and snapping drum beat. The only track added contains lead chords to provide more founding to the song, so bass, lead synthesizer and drums were pre-recorded as you hear them.
13 All Horns Blue (M. Davis / B.Flos) 4:18 [OTR]
To conclude this album I have added an improvised track with nothing but horns. It is an arrangement on All Blues from Miles Davis and I just wanted to use this magnificent digital sound patch on its own. It was originally used for a composition that didn’t make it on the album (see Bonus Tracks under the submenu ‘Audio’).