Hey fans! I had a realization yesterday – Kansas City, MO (KCMo as we call it), my new home, has an amazingly rich musical history. I know, as a musician you’d think I research this stuff before I moved but – well, life happened. Anyway, yesterday I was just curious about the artwork atop the Kauffman Convention Center (they are these four pillars that look like cudgels on top of smoke stacks) so I did some research. This ultimately threw me into a great series of articles on the history of KCMo and – it’s music. I feel like an idiot for not knowing these things:
- Kansas City, MO is considered the birthplace for American Jazz. Now, to my credit I’m not a jazz aficionado but I am a music history buff so you’d think I know.
- The 18th and Vine area, not far away from the downtown core, is considered the Jazz Holy Land and also hosts the Blue Room which launched MANY well known acts.
- A few singers from here made it very big over time. Of my generation of music – Puddle of Mudd started here, so did Melissa Etheridge. Even Eminem spent a few years in St. Joseph, MO on the eastern edge of the KCMo metro area.
- One other very well known act from my history – Tech N9ne – is from this area and I had no idea!
As a random bit of fun, you will recall that I wrote Street Fire after visiting a certain neighborhood in KCMo and feeling the energy there. It turns out that this neighborhood is only a few miles away from 18th and Vine. Perhaps that is part of why the energy was so strong there. Whatever the case may be, I am enjoying a city that has a culture of music and I can’t wait to learn more about it when the time allows.
If you’re bored, here is a list of tracks that I think you’ll like from KCMo folks:
- Tech N9ne – Hood Go Crazy
- Vedera – Satisfy
- The Get-Up Kids – Ten Minutes
- Blackpool Lights – It’s Never About What It’s About
- CES/Cru – Seven Chakras
- Mac Lethal – Angel of Death (feat. Tech N9ne)
- The Casket Lottery – Code Red
- Coalesce – Blue Collar Lullaby
- Skatterman and Snug Brim – On My Feet
- The Gadjits – Beautiful Girl
- Krizz Kaliko – Girls Like That
- The Life and Times – Coat of Arms
- Flee the Seen – I’ll Be Back on Sunday
- Shiner – The Truth About Cows
- Reggie and the Full Effect – Congratulations Smack + Katy
- The Rainmakers – Let My People Go-Go
- Republic Tigers – Sinkin’ Annie Down, Down, Down, Down
- Solé – 4,5,6
- The Elders – Men of Erin
- Kutt Calhoun – I Been Dope (feat. Tech N9ne)
Maybe this will help catalyze my music production! I guess only time will tell!
Hello fans! I am excited to announce the release of the fifth song from my upcoming EP, Expanse. I call this new song “Street Fire” and it’s dedicated to the people in my new city (see the post about Relocation if you aren’t sure what I mean). But the true motivation is something very cool and deserves to be told.
If you do not know, I am a Christian and I am not afraid to admit it. One of the things I have always enjoyed is seeing the different ways that God can use my skills. I’ve never written a song for God, nothing could speak to him. But, this is close. You see, my family and I agreed to work with a great mission called “Freedom Fire” and they do some great outreach things in the Kansas City area. One of them is a Friday Night celebration where they invite almost 100 kids from an impoverished, inner-city apartment complex to a night of fun with face painting, sports, food, etc. I had the honor of volunteering at this event with my wife and kids. I was amazed at the positivity of the kids even though I saw the very dangerous and scary world they lived in. It reminded me that you can find a fire in people off the streets that burns brighter than many churches.
As a result, I combined hip hop elements, beats, trap and techno elements to this track. I actually wrote the beat the day after I saw the kids and I could just imagine them dancing to it. This is a track unlike any other track that I have made and it has a great mission! Check it out!
Hello fans, it’s been a very long time since I have provided you any updates. I’m sorry about that, but life has been very busy. As of March, I took a new job and moved my family to a new city in the Midwest USA. This has been a challenging transition to say the least. I have already talked about it at length on my personal Facebook and on my spiritual blog so I won’t go into it here. But, it does at least explain why you have not heard anything from me.
I do have a much more spacious office and studio space in my new home as the basement is finished and offers lots of space that is not currently needed for other purposes. I have already setup my mixer deck, my speakers, mic, and a few other peripherals. I also have done a few solid tests for acoustics. Will this translate into new music? Maybe so or maybe not.
I am still working on the new album and trying to focus on the new, more techno-focused sound. If you’ve followed my blog you’ll know that I have dropped 4 songs so far. I usually try to put 7-9 songs on each EP that I create. I have never officially released my “Space Jingle” Christmas song on an album so if I include that, it would be 5 songs. However, if I’m going to include Boom Room on the album, I am likely to have some legal hurdles since a few other artists have already used the same pad setup to make different songs and copyrighted them (or so YouTube and SoundCloud seem to think). I don’t have the financial means or desire to take on a possibly lengthy lawsuit so I may have to drop Boom Room from the album entirely. If so, I’m back down to 4 songs with Space Jingle. That means I need at least 3 other songs to round out the EP. I certainly have a few projects that I could turn into songs and I very well may do just that. But I never just throw a song together that might be good and put it on an album to fill up space, that’s not my approach at all.
Each track I include on an album is one of the many I have written and ultimately decided was worth the release. So writing 3 solid songs is going to depend a great deal on my time to work in the studio and the right amount of creative indulgence applied to those works. If the creative juices strike me, it may be just enough to take one of the many projects I have and turn it into a real song, or it may be a totally new project that just fits when I write it. Or, it could be any mixture of those two. So I don’t intend to rush this as the more rush, the lower quality the music I produce tends to be. As I write new stuff worth mentioning, I will share it to those who follow me.
Meanwhile, I am focusing my attention on getting my life in order after the move. I am also working on getting my oldest son a set of electronic drums the he can use because he seems to have some untapped talent in this field (at least if his rhythmic drumming on overturned laundry baskets, pans, and darn near any other surface he can get his hands on has anything to say about it). I took the kid to a music store about a year ago and they had an electronic set with headphones. He put them on and spent the greater part of 30 minutes drumming all over the place. If I can reasonably afford to buy him a set and hook it up to the studio, you can imagine the fun we could have. Imagine if one of the tracks on my new EP had a drum fill courtesy of my child or even an entire rhythmic section. As an artist, it’s my duty to foster other artists, that duty is increased one-hundred fold when the other artist happens to be my child.
Stay tuned! DJ6i out!
Hey friends! I have been talking about this track for several weeks now and I released it on SoundCloud a while ago but I was holding out hope that I could get a cool video made for it but I simply don’t have time. With that being said, you can now listen to “Burning Star” on YouTube. Enjoy!
Wow, I’ve been so busy that I almost forgot! I also posted a video to my first track off the Expanse album, it is out there on Tubes now!
Hello everyone! I have added the video for Take Flight to YouTube. It looks really good to me! I hope you enjoy it! I am also officially calling my new album “Expanse”. I have two official tracks released and a third that I am about to make official. I don’t know how long it will take to get the rest of the tracks out so stay tuned!