Sept. 1914 – 3am20
At some time in the late Sumer of 1978 – September if I’m not mistaken – I decided to write my own story about saving the human race. (I just remembered right as of this handwriting that the first person to hear about this set of 5 songs was my then bestest friend, Lisa Reynolds. (Born on June 4th, as well.) I told her about them (carried with me) in the Thunderbirds Billiards hall that we were both in, one evening. Anyhoo – back to what I typed out in my Forum that I’ve been working on for this 8th version of the ‘rock opera’ in … (((I don’t know why I ended the writing like that.)))
If I remember correctly, I had been very heavily into 2 albums from Canadian bands at that time:
#1 – Black Noise from the Toronto, Ontario, Canada band FM.that had been formed originally by Nash The Slash (R.I.P. buddy. Missing you. 🙁 ) and Cameron Hawkins, in around 1974.
I had a brief friendship mainly online from 2004 to 2006, with Jeff (Nash). I had previously seen him performing in Winnipeg, Manitoba (where our friendship started) and in Kitchener, Ontario.
Many of the songs on that album, I interpreted as a ‘concept album’ about the saving of a race of people; escaping; taking them away to find a safer place to live.
#2 – Hemispheres from Rush. (Also from Toronto.) My bass guitar teacher at that time had introduced me to that album, LOUDLY, through his 3 way speaker stereo system, at his house.
The Hemispheres album I took to be another concept album along the same idea as the FM album, to, certain degrees.
Together, influences from these 2 albums caused me to write lyrics for 5 songs, telling a story about saving the human race; escaping to another planet somewhere, getting away from the troubles on Earth.
At some point in my life, those 5 songs disappeared. I remember though that the title of the 5 of them overall HAD been – Journey To The City. (For whatever reason, I haven’t the faintest memory, as to why, regrettably.)
On January 0582 – I decided to rewrite the story. (Note here: since I started that paragraph, I’ve had further memories and realization as TO having begun the FIRST rewrite of them at some point in 1981. NOT 1982. That bit is covered though, on another later page here.)
I decided to rewrite the story. I had decided that, I was going to compose a ‘rock opera’. 🙂 Yup. Taking influences from The Who’s 2 albums: Pinball Wizard and Quadraphenia. Except MY ‘rock opera’ was going to be massive. Album after album of songs, telling the story of saving the human race from the troubles on Earth.
I wrote the lyrics on my parent’s ancient Royal typewriter, at the kitchen table for the 1st 8 songs, on January 0582.
The next 7 sets of lyrics (song #’s 9 to 15), two days later and the next 4, the next day. The song that became song #20, I wrote in August ’87. Song #’s 21 to 24 I wrote on January 1282. (Song #22 was typed, as an instrumental! Hahn? Lol.) And finally, song #25 (Simulated Storms) was written in August ’82, out at my friend
Anthony Magnifico’s trailers, at Sandy Lake, Manitoba, where we spent 2 weeks in the sun. 😉
There were another 39 sets of lyrics written for a total of 64 songs. The rest of those lyrics disappearing, is explained in the earlier today writings that I did, just before work. I shant repeat Sept. 1714’s portion here now, due to that. (And my phreaking hand is tired from writing, haha.)
I wrote song #20 (which it’d becomed – to purposely use, bad grammar 😉 ) – Travelers – in the Summer of ’87 when Ant’s younger brother Carlo had popped over, to see my ‘cough’ studio setup. (At that time at least, a Casio CZ101; a Korg Poly 800 or two and a Roland TR707 drum machine.)
To entertain Carlo, I started writing a tune with strong Kraftwerk – Man Machine (album) influences.
The lyrics that I wrote, to sound Kraftwerk similar, I probably realized would fit into the ‘rock opera’.
Most of the lyrics in the original version of the ‘rock opera’ Journey To The city, have been kept as thew were then, in the final version of it. I made changes to the year in places so that things happening followed in a chronological order. I left the month names / et cetera from the original, intact, but used them no further in the story.
Same thing with devices that I had created names for back then. I left them, as they were.
Looking back to those days (32 years ago, from the original hand writing of this text), there were quite a lot of ideas rambling around in relation to the story. A fair bit of art work; 2 stories begun in book format; the ‘rock opera’ itself; a cartoon version, with the story starting in downtown Winnipeg. Also thoughts / dreams of doing a cartoon / animated version from phreaking pencil crayon,
which ended up with only ONE picture done. I still have it – a poorly drawn man walking down the street. I should have taken art lessons or something! Lol. (((Note: this is NOT the picture that I’ve included here as the title image, for this section of the blog. 😉 It was drawn for whatever other fantasy reason, back in those days. Lol.)))
Musically (((Nov. 1415 – as far as the printed BOOK with DVD is concerned – not this online collection of …))) I’m including every version of everything that I still have recordings of for my personal history’s sakes. In all of this time, I’ve never collected all of them together in one place.
From the inside of my aging noggin’, all of the included versions are:
Journey To The City:
Song #1 – The Beginning – November 0985 – Korg Polysix; Stix
Programma ST-305 drum machine
Song #2 – The Construction of Rania – November 0185; same equipment
Song #3 – Inhabitants – November 0885-1185 – same equipment
Song #4 – The End – November 1985 – same equipment
Journey To The city – “Version 2 – 1990”
JTTC – 2-90 – February ’90 – Ensoniq ESQ1; Kawai K1 and k5m; Roland R5 drum machine. “Version 2” had originally been composed also using the Moog Minimoog for the bassline. I had it on loan from the Playground X lead singer / keyboardist – Reggie Mennel, that I had done work for in ’90. I had also played a few shows him and guitarist Clayton Halverson in a downtown Winnipeg bar (Ruby’s?). We were known as: “Three Men and a drum machine.” They fired us on Wednesday for playing too many blues tunes. Haha! I was still paid fully for the week, anyways. The original version of 2-90 was lost though, leaving me only with this later version of it. 12 minutes long and no vocals.
The Collected Origins of Life (The C.O.o.L.) – 2001:
In January 2001 – Jan. 0301, iirc I started rewriting the story from scratch. The music for this version continued to evolve entirely in Propellerheads’ Reason, from version 1.0 up to version 3.01 in April 2004, when I finally stopped working on it. (The following July ’05, I returned to building modular synthesizer gear – until March ’14, when I decided FINALLY to return to composing, for the first time in 9 phreaking years! 😮 )
The 2001-2004 version became a 51 minute long piece. My intention for it HAD been to develop themesefor each of the 5 Beings, to tell their stories. This idea never really DID emerge as … being a self-taught musician, that rarely ever practices ANYthing – I never really HAVE learned, after 39 years of composing, HOW to compose emotionally. 🙁 (((Accept, for aggressive emotion. I’m able to compose THAT way, without any troubles. 😮 )))
The story ended up with 20 minutes of narration, telling the story. Again, I never did get back TO it, to tell more of the story. THAT task at least was finally completed in August ’14: 35 years and 11 months after the story began! Haha. 😀
The C.O.o.L. – 2013:
This was, by far, the briefest version of rewrites, being version 7. Work on it was basically, only during April ’13 as I continued to learn how to work with my then new, Kork EMX-1SD work station. I came up with a few ideas for yet ANOTHER beginning to the story, eking out a few unfinished ideas on that machine alone. None of it, came to completion. The biggest thing that I was missing with that
devices, was the ability to play phreaking CHORDS! The only other piece of gear (outside of my modular) that I had at the time was my refurbished Alesis Micron. (To ME: very col / digitally thin sounding.)
And THEN, 6 weeks after getting the EMX, it’s data knob, started it’s infamous ‘skipping’ malfunction. That itself helped, in taking away my interest on working / continuing to work on version 7 of J.T.T.C. 🙁
And FINALLY, we have – version 8!:D Phreaking completed after almost 36 years since it’s start! 🙂
The equipment that HAS, and IS being used to compose and re-compose the music for the 40 songs (I believe 25 of them are done now) is:
(Before I list it – in the Summer of this year (2015), I DID compose a 41st song. Also earlier this year, I started composing songs for the sub-stories, within the main story.)
Korg: Triton ‘classic’; Volca Bass, Keys and Beats; EMX-1SD and ESX-
Waldorf: Blofeld keyboard
Roland: VT-3 Voice Transformer (ALL vocals done through it)
The Deathlehem Machine (modular) with modules from Serge, CGS, MFOS,
YuSynth and my own modules
Native Instruments: Reaktor V5.09
There are influences from many areas / genres of music in all of my composing for this: Ministry, Kraftwerk, Killing Joke, Tangerine Dream, Sex Pistols, Baroque ‘classical’; Jean Michel Jarre and many others.
I’m composing by mood, sounds wise and music wise. I can’t really apply much of any lavel to myself, outside of ‘quick’ and ‘raw’.
Sure there can be many improvements … (((song #5, Saberhagen’s Berserkers WAS redone. Others will be as well.))) … but when I have so little free time TO compose, I have to get it all done, fast.
And there we are: this is the book’s ‘Intro’ completed. Raw, quick and rough. But, who cares? Only me. Something that I’ll be able to read again hopefully, for as long as I’m able to see and comprendé!
Ryk John Miller Thekreator
September 1814 – 2pm24 – Precision Resource Ltd. “Friday”! 😀
Journey To The City rewrites
1978 September was the original 5 song lyrics – all lost 🙁
‘1982’ I’m quoting which I believe as of 2 days ago now to actually BE, rewrite #1! Dad was still alive I think (up to September 0581) as I had lost the original 64 song lyrics to a female DJ from the Winnipeg 92 CITI FM station in October or November ’81. I still had that original 25 each in their own envelope for self-copyrighting.
(25 – I incorrectly remember as the original #20 + #25 were written
SO! The ‘original J.T.T.C. is now officially, rewrite #1!
#1 – 5 tunes
#2 – 64 tunes
#3 – first recording of the first 3 or 5 tunes in 1982 or 1983
#4 – 25 RECORDED tunes in 1986 and 1987
#5 – 1989 Moon Minimoog / Ensoniq ESQ1
#6 – 2001 to 2004 – The Collected Origins of Life
#7 – 2013 – The C.O.o.L.
#8 – 2014 – The C.O.o.L. completion
(It’s actually 2015 – Numan Five – the Being of Balance, now. 😉 )
Back to where I was originally intending on writing:
Rewrite #3 included my first actual music writing FOR the ‘rock opera’. It would have been done using my Radio Shack Color Computer running the synthesizer software “Synther 7” as well as audio created from DOS Basic on the Radio Shack Color Computer; my Casio VL-1 Tone (sequences and live playing); Freeman String Symphonizer and Mattel Synsonics drum machine along with a Radio Shack 4 channel mixer and reverb unit which made (then) great ‘overdrive’ sounds. All recorded on cassette to cassette overdubbing. They also COULD have used the Stix Programma ST-305 drum machine that I bought in Edmonton, Alberta in the Summer of 1984, when I was participating in Katimavik. I can
verify by listening to the original 4 tunes that I still have form ’85/’86. (I got my Roland TR-707 in late ’86, iirc.) 2pm46
November 1415 update:
There were some music gear changes through the past year, that I used in completing the songs for the #8 rewrite, as well as the new sub-stories. These include:
– a Mandolin (along with Electro-harmonix Muff Pi effects pedal)
– Novation Mininova
– Nord Lead 2X
– Korg Volca Sample
– Arturia Beatstep
– ApeSoft iVCS3
– Werkbench (drum machine software on the i-Pad)
– Epiphone (Gibson) Les Paul
– Roland TD-6 drum kit
– Roland Handsonics 10 drums controller
Sold or traded away:
– the Korg Volca Keys, Bass and Beats
– Waldorf Blofeld keyboard