Posts Tagged ‘music’

I tend to spend very much time in my own thoughts. I've often received such labels as introvert, thinker, geek, quiet guy, etc, and for the most part those are very true. I tend to think much more than I talk.

Anyway, a couple days ago, I had fallen into my typical thinking mood. And in this particular case, I was thinking about Facebook, what it was like when I started using it years ago, and what it's morphed into now. I started remembering all of those chain notes that went around, often quizzes and such and if you got tagged in the note, you were supposed to take the same quiz for yourself and tag other people in it. I always found those particularly fascinating… They had a way of drumming up some interesting information about people, and being the kind of person I am, I like interesting information about people. There was one in particular that I remember, called '25 random things about me'. I enjoyed doing that one so much, that I've decided to do it again. Only this time, I'm only going to do 10 things, since you probably wouldn't care to read much more than that.

  1. I love collecting old things. Specifically coins and books. I started collecting coins when I was nine years old, and it's become quite extensive. It includes ancient, foreign, and U.S. coins. I have coins from mid-4th century Rome, a coin from England with King George III on it (the king in power during the American Revolution), coins from the German Empire before Hitler was in power, and coins from five out of the six populated and civilized continents. I have a very high fascination with old things.
  2. I'm red-green color blind. My girlfriend likes to tease me because of this. I can usually see the colors separately, but when you put them right next to each other, sometimes I can't even see a little bit of color. And yes, I can tell when traffic lights are red and green, so don't worry.
  3. I've always been very fascinated with Russia. Especially its culture, history, language, and music.
  4. I have a very firm opinion of Taylor Swift and One Direction and am occasionally much more outspoken and harsh about it than I should be.
  5. If I could meet any person from history who's now dead and gone, it would be Sergei Rachmaninoff hands down. I don't choose Jesus simply because I know without a doubt that I'll see him when I die.
  6. When it comes to food, I'm a texture guy. If the texture isn't right in a food, it can make my stomach turn even if the taste and smell is really good. In the same way, some of my favorite foods are just because the texture is amazing even if I don't find the taste particularly good.
  7. I'm not a squeamish person, except when it comes to hand injuries. I don't know if it's something that comes from my piano playing, but it makes my stomach turn when I see even just a dislocated finger.
  8. I have a strange compulsion to tear, crumple, and crease paper. If there is a piece of paper in my hand that I don't need, it will be destroyed. It's the same thing with those wooden coffee stirrers that some cafes have. I simply must tear them to pieces.
  9. Trumpet is one of my favorite instruments to play, but only if I'm in shape for it.
  10. Longboarding is one of my favorite pastimes. That's how I impart my natural manly need for the thrill of danger and risk. Flying down a hill faster than 35mph on a chunk of wood is perfect for that.

So there's my ten random facts. For all you fellow bloggers out there, give this a go and then post the link to it in the comments here so I can see your random facts.

 

Rach on!

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Now for me to continue and finish my short, two-part series on rap.

As a Christian, I have a hard time listening to a lot of what’s out there as far as the rap/hip-hop music scene goes. Musically, there’s a lot of good stuff out there, but even if the music is good, I simply do not enjoy listening to a song about sex, or a song that completely objectifies women. Solution? Christian rap. Even as Christian music as a whole is still recovering from 90’s and 00’s CCM, Christian rap is making a name for itself, not only because the music itself is good, but also because the lyrics are down to earth, and understandable to Christians and non-Christians alike.

In order to prevent myself from biased generalization, please understand that no genre can be fully described as a whole. Not all Christian rap is as I just described it; there is a whole lot of Christian rap with terribly composed music and painfully unrelatable lyrics. But I’d like to introduce you to two artists who do indeed fit well into my claim that I made above.

These artists are Lecrae and Trip Lee. Many of you may know about them already. They have both been making music for a long time that has always been up to date, relevant to culture, and convicting. Check out these songs by them.

 

Disclaimer: By the phrase “I’m good” he’s not referring to his own character, but rather the term meaning that he’s okay, or he’s doing fine.

I’d highly recommend checking out their other music. There’s lots of it. Plus, if you have any other Christian rap artists that you really like, post their name in the comments, I’d really like recommendations. And if you have any particular thoughts on either of these songs, feel free to voice them.

Rach on!

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Mirror

1. Lil Wayne and Bruno Mars… Dang.

2. I really like Lil Wayne’s rapping. He’s got a unique voice that he doesn’t have to do crazy over-dubbing and postprocessing to in order to be recognized (ahem, Eminem), and his writing is really good. It’s poetical, has great imagery, and he has a really fascinating and ringing tone to the words and rhymes he crafts. Alas, it’s too bad most of his songs are filthy, lyrically.

3. I found the lyrical content of this song very thought provoking.

4. I apologize if you are offended by the obscenity.

5. I’d like to hear what y’all think of this song.

Rach on!

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Ambience

I feel like I should give voice to one of my favorite types of music… Ambient.

Ambient music is mostly, if not completely electronic. Think of it as sort of a chill techno, although not all of it can be described that way. As with all types of music, there is much variation within the genre. I don’t know why, but I find this music very stimulating to the synapses of my brain. It puts me in a very contemplative mood. It is often harmonically driven, rather than melodically, which makes it perfect for certain things such as relaxing and clearing the mind of stressful things. It moves, yet it does not distract. It strives not to impress, but to inspire.

Here’s a good example of ambient music… The Outer Banks by The Album Leaf.

Some other good ambient artists apart from The Album Leaf are Tycho, Static, Explosions In The Sky, and Sigur Rós (although I wouldn’t consider all their music to be ambient). I would highly recommend giving them a listen.

Rach on!

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Ireland

I feel like it would be remiss of me if I were to not post about my recent excursion to the beautiful country of Ireland.

The Cliffs of Moher

The Cliffs of Moher was just one of the many spectacular places we visited

The trip was actually a chorale tour with Lancaster Bible College. We had the opportunity to do four concerts in a span of eight days.

I’m not even sure where to begin describing what happened on this trip… It was incredible, to say the very least. Many people have asked me over the past several days what my favorite part or parts were. I guess I can try to muster an answer here.

1. The concerts

The concerts were a huge highlight of the trip. All of the music we sung was from either North or South America. We sang spirituals, Argentinian cowboy music, Brazilian tribal, folk, and much more. Not every song we sang was a Christian song, per say, but the ones that were, we really focused on as our presentation of the gospel message. Especially our ending piece of every concert, In Christ Alone. Our performances all went exceptionally well, but what I loved most about our concerts were the people who came to see us. I loved all the opportunities to talk to the audience members we got after every concert. It was such a blessing to have that chance to invest in the people of Ireland in that way.

2. The friends

Through the trip, so many friendships were made and so many others were strengthened. We experienced so much together and so many things happened that really brought us all together. There was lots of fun, lots of jokes, lots of challenges, lots of praying for each other… I couldn’t have asked for a better group to travel with.

3. The places

Clonmacnoise

Clonmacnoise

As much as I wish I could, I can’t tell you everything about all the places we visited. We toured castles, cathedrals, ancient monastic settlements, 19th century mansions, an abbey… The list goes on. My favorite place was probably Clonmacnoise, the aforesaid ancient monastic settlement. The whole time we were there it was foggy and raining lightly. It was so serene. I couldn’t stop thinking of the 1,000+ years of people worshiping the same God I do in that one place, and that in turn prompted me to praise Him for His steadfastness.

Well there you have it. Those were my favorite things from Ireland. I would highly recommend you make a trip over there some time. It is well worth it.

Rach on!

P.S. For a more detailed account of our experiences in Ireland, check out the blog that was kept during the trip… lbcireland.blogspot.com.

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So my most recent attempt at posting regularly on my blog was, again, a failure. I was going good for a couple of weeks and then, well, college happened. I most certainly wasn’t ready for the onslaught of overwhelming amounts of information.

Just so you have an inkling of what my schedule is like, tomorrow I have 6 hours of classes, at least 2 hours of piano practicing, an hour of chapel, and two half-hour accompanying jobs.

Result: no blogging.

I do wish to keep posting occasionally though.

In other news, I just completed my first college paper, and I got the part of Rolf in the school’s upcoming production of Sound of Music. I’m quite excited :D!

Now I should probably go to bed seeing as I have to be up by 6am tomorrow if I’m going to get to school on time.

Rach on!

 

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Noise

So I figured out how to hook the amp up to the computer by a very unconventional means… Amp output > 1/4″ to 3.55mm adapter > 3.55mm aux cord > mic jack on computer. I’m sure there are better ways to do it, but for this I didn’t have to pay anything because I already have all the needed components.

Anyway, I got it all hooked up to the computer and spent my morning playing around with it and my guitar in the amazing opensource audio editor, Audacity. Finally I came out with something kind of fairly decent-ish, and so I’m posting it here.

Note: If you’ve ever heard The Friend I Never Met by Andy Mckee, then yes, a couple elements of my experiment were inspired by that. The actual tune I came up with is the product of about 20 seconds of improv and the thought, “Okay, yeah. That fits.” It wasn’t something I worked long and hard to come up with and frankly, if you stole it and somehow made money off of it (which would surprise me since it isn’t that great, although, neither is most mainstream music that came out in the past 10 years), I wouldn’t really care. In fact, if you can take that melody and make it into chart-topper, hats off to you!

Alright, well enough riffraff. I’ll let you listen to it.

Oh and sorry about the low quality especially in the first part… I was trying to get rid of some of the noise and succeeded in distorting it a little bit. And it’s not mixed or equalized very well… Oh well, I’ll figure it out eventually :).

Rach on!

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