Week 32: “Bring ’em Through” (demo)

Audio:

Download link for MP3

Notes:

This is one of the songs I wrote for the current Poison Ivy Mysteries show: Murdered…FOR SCIENCE! It’s basically the process that one of the scientists goes through invoking time travel, helped by his assistant. This particular version is the demo track I recorded for rehearsal purposes, so I’m voicing both parts. Tickets are still available this week at poisonivymysteries.com!

Week 26: “Half a Song”

Audio:

Download link for MP3

Notes:

I’m halfway done with this project! To celebrate, here’s half a song. (It’s not even really half a song; it barely constitutes a chorus, but whatever.)

Also, an announcement: I’m taking July off with this project. I feel like I’m burning out a little bit on this, plus with some extra time I can build up a backlog of songs that will have taken more than two hours to throw together. Don’t worry, I’ll still end up doing 52 weeks; it’s just that I’ll end up bleeding into January of 2015. Thanks y’all for listening, and I’ll see you back here in August!

Week 20: “Fortified Sorcerers”

Audio:

Download link for MP3

Notes:

This came about through a bit of silliness when I was playing Small World with my sister Annelise’s family. My niece Ivy had picked the “Fortified Sorcerers” as her first race and for some reason this song resulted from it. I was still a little sick, so the voice is a little scratchy. Here are the lyrics:

Fortified Sorcerers x4

The fortified sorcerers
Will spread across the land
Taking homes from ratmen
Everywhere they can

They’ll zap with their secret spell
They’ll turn you into them
Afterward they’ll run and hide
Where they can plot again

Fortified Sorcerers x4

Don’t try to go and find them
Your army will fall short
The fortified sorcerers
Are hiding in their fort

Many hundred years from now
When they are in decline
The forts of the sorcerers
Will still be holding fine

Watch out!

Fortified Sorcerers x8

Week 18: “Poison Ivy Mysteries Fifth Anniversary Medley”

Audio:

Download link for MP3

Notes:

Five years ago, Poison Ivy Mysteries was working on putting on its very first show: Called to Murder, an LDS-themed murder mystery, at the Wiseguys comedy club in Orem. It was an inauspicious beginning, but from that day the company has put on twelve original shows (it will be thirteen in October, dun dun dun!), some of them several times, and has enjoyed success all around the Salt Lake area. I’ve been composing for these shows since day one, and this song I’m posting has snippets from every show I’ve done, along with original lyrics and a chorus specifically written for this medley.

Happy anniversary, Poison Ivy Mysteries!

Lyrics:

In the Orem 5067th Ward
We came along and got on board
With a bishop, a speaker, and the bishop’s son
And don’t forget Lambert with his nunchuck gun!

When I went to a wedding I was fair gobsmacked
A groom was the only think these mates lacked
Was a bonzer bash, for this brave Ozzie
I enjoyed myself quite more than a mozzie
The place was really goin’ off
’Til the death that caught us all in a toff
But a fair lil’ sheila, she caught me eye
But I promised meself I wouldn’t cry
So I said, “hooroo”, which means goodbye.
Too right. Deadset. Fair dinkum.

Ladies and gentlemen, someone has been killed
It’s up to you to figure out who, why, and how
There were no conspiracies; the murderer can lie
There are clues hidden in your centerpieces
Get up and question us now.

With Ron, Hermione, and
Edward and Bella, and a
Monster from Frankenstein; a
Show we’ll never do

Can you feel that Rhythm?
Yeah, that funky Rhythm?
Makes you wanna do it.
Do what?
Dancin’ to that rhythm
Could you make a movie
Dancin’ to that rhythm
Jimmy, will you choose me?
Or dancin’ to that rhythm?

Ladies and gentlemen, someone has been killed
It’s up to you to figure out who, why, and how
There were no conspiracies; the murderer can lie
There are clues hidden in your centerpieces
Get up and question us now.

Excuse me captain, I must confess
We’ve gathered all these candidates
From parts unknown to parts we know
To make the great Alliance grow

Well that’s just great, my android friend
But I’m afraid this is the end
With aliens both green and brown
There’s someone here that put us into lockdown!

(Life just sucks when you’re under lockdown)

It’s a heist
It isn’t nice
Violence and vice
Mobsters can do it twice
Crooked cops and a gumshoe pay the price
Can you pull a most spectacular heist?

Ladies and gentlemen, someone has been killed
It’s up to you to figure out who, why, and how
There were no conspiracies; the murderer can lie
There are clues hidden in your centerpieces
Get up and question us now.

Wobbledy-bobbledy fiddle-dee-dee
The king has died, no thanks to me
Prince and princess want the crown
Witches bring the kingdom down
Who will win the royal right?
I won’t give in without a fight!

Love and gold can set a cowboy free
Partners and owners of the mine, don’t you see
All the gold, it belongs to me!

Impossible, and I know
Incredible, just to see
Egyptian curses flying about.

Our high school days have passed
The feelings there won’t last
The nerds and jocks all have gone
All we have left
are memories

Ladies and gentlemen, someone has been killed
It’s up to you to figure out who, why, and how
There were no conspiracies; the murderer can lie
There are clues hidden in your centerpieces
Get up and question us now.

The Ghost of Legend from Blackmarsh town
Was he the one to bring us down?
With a farmer, a soldier, and a schoolteacher too
What can a New England preacher do?

Mad Mahoney’s treasure brought
Pirates far and near
The voodoo curse we’ll break tonight
’Tis the life of a buccaneer!

Ladies and gentlemen, someone has been killed
It’s up to you to figure out who, why, and how
There were no conspiracies; the murderer can lie
There are clues hidden in your centerpieces
Get up and question…

Ladies and gentlemen, someone has been killed
It’s up to you to figure out who, why, and how
There were no conspiracies; the murderer can lie
There are clues hidden in your centerpieces
Get up and question us now!

Week 16: “Rascal”

Audio:

Download link for MP3

Notes:

First of all, the lyrics for this came about as a result of a quick Facebook contest I held where the first five people to respond with a single word would get their words used in my next song. The words ended up being, “awesome,” “persnickety,” “adorable,” “quixotic,” and “lego,” with a sixth, “rascal,” added at the last minute for fun. So thanks to Jim Vehawn, Emily Meyer, Kristi Hill, Mark Burtenshaw, Nikki Garrett, and Lisa Thurman for the suggestions! I may do this type of thing again in the future.

Probably not for a while, though, since this ended up being the culmination of a lot of things that probably should’ve been taken on one by one. In my opinion, speaking musically (and more from a mixing standpoint really), the vocals ruined this song. Not because it wasn’t written with vocals in mind, or worked better as a wordless piece of music or anything, but it caused me to overmix. The minus track I had done before I started adding the vocals was something I was really proud of. I was still learning the new quirks associated with Logic Pro X, but I had made something that sounded great, full of energy with an epic feel. Adding the voice part just didn’t match the earlier feel and dragged it down, mostly because 1) my vocal range meant I couldn’t Freddie Mercury the thing and my bass/baritone voice was not suited for it, 2) the lyrics were written after the music was done and had to have those six words in it (though I cheated and used “leggo,” short for “let go,” instead of “lego”) and didn’t quite match either, and 3) I’m not all that good at mixing vocals, especially when I’m under a time crunch and working with something so processed as this song was already. Sometimes when I try mixing vocals I inevitably end up killing a bit of the sparkle from the minus track, and for this particular piece I couldn’t recapture it before I had to post it. It also didn’t help that I was still working with a somewhat unfamiliar interface. I did also make a track with a piano part standing in for the vocals which I’m also posting here, but even this track isn’t quite on par with what it sounded like before I started screwing with the mix to add the vocal parts.

Download link for minus track MP3

Week 10: “I Have”

Audio:

Download link for MP3

Notes:

This was the week that Words of Radiance, by Brandon Sanderson, came out, and I spent nearly all of my free time reading it. Also, this week I had a couple of dates, an entire day spent at a Starcraft II tournament (supporting my roommate Sheldyn; I didn’t actually compete), an afternoon spent helping out my sister Annelise’s family, and, of course, my full-time job, but I didn’t note any of that in this song.

Week 9: “The ‘Ultimate Dance Mix'”

Audio:

Download link for MP3

Notes:

This is how seriously I take dance songs. Also, not long before this I accidentally deleted most of my mixing presets, and this one could benefit from a little better mixing. Ah, well. Points to anyone who plays this at a dance. Bonus points to anyone who invents a dance for it, and then shows it off at a dance!

Most impressive part about this: The pi recitation was strictly from memory!