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The availability of CD-mastering and internet connection - through my my new computer in 1998 - rekindled my interest in making albums, and I tried a series of experiments with old, new and even hybrid recordings. Even so, the flame was going out of this type of work - though being briefly rekindled when I bought a Boss BR-8 digital multitrack recorder. The purchase, in 2001, of a stand-alone Philips CD-Recorder has made CD-making much easier and quicker - though the sound isn't as good as the slow, laborious and old-fashioned method of hard-disk recording.


Any reservations I have about these discs are noted in italics.

- Baroque Jazz: I made the Baroque Jazz series of MIDI-files in 1995, but wasn't happy with them. Now I've redone the lead instrumental lines, while recording the results direct to disk (albiet with two "glitches" in the recording). The instrumental voicings are now drums, acoustic bass, 'rhythm' piano (with the two 'hands' made up of separately recorded lines) and acoustic guitar.

- Jazz Country: In 1996 I tried mixing digital/MIDI songs with overdubbed guitar lines, by stripping the "top" instrumental lines from a collection of MIDI-songs and using the results as two of four final channels. The experiment was a failure, but I've now added fresh twin-guitar lines using my Yamaha mini electro-acoustic guitar. I may still re-record the tapes to CD since the mix wasn't perfect - we'll see.

- Guitar Works 1992-1998: Few of my electric guitar-based CDs have been consistently good from start to finish. This compilation - with tracks from "Guitar '97", "Groove '92", "Bop '92", "Warped '98", "Stretching Out" and "Exhibition '98" - was made for an experiment as much as anything else, since the sounds of the recordings (not to mention the performances) are quite diverse.Digital Frenzy

- Guitar Test: This was a test of my then "as-new" (second hand) Yamaha Pacifica 112L. This is just me foolling around in one continuous take, though there are interesting moments.

- "Digital Frenzy": This was recorded on my then-new Roland BR-8 digital recorder, and finds me playing lead, rhythm, electric, electro-acoustic and bass guitars with keyboards and digital drum patterns. I'm particularly impressed by my lead-guitar playing - courtesy of the Yamaha 112L with it's ultra-low action. But these were experimental recordings - and many songs don't sound as good as I'd hoped they would. Featured at http://www.mp3.com.au/AlexVanStarrex/.

- Band Aid: A one-off jam that I had with a drummer and songwriter/player in February, 2002. Short and sweet, the session broke down due to incompatible music and personal differences. There's some great playing from me here, but the bass-player's songs are odd and the mix between instruments isn't right.


some more.

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URL: http://homepages.tig.com.au/~avanstar
Alex Van Starrex