Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Good Sessions

April has been a month of hard work. After some long breaks we got back to a solid jamming schedule and have seen the creation of two new songs...we also picked up one we hadn't sung for six months or more, a Devil Tree oldie as it were, and it was spot on tight, a big encouragement.

We are still working with the anticipation of playing out as well as staying committed to the eventual release of a collection of our finished songs but we are taking time to let new ideas happen as well.

Looking forward to Norman Music Festival for a rest and a time to drink in the energy of other musicians and people out loving and drinking in music...our time will come!

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Impressive Transformation

So a few years ago I meet these guys. A dude and his son. We were playing D&D back then. The group broke up, the game ended. Partly on my end because I really wanted to get back to playing music. I kept in touch with them though and a couple of years later, Justin sends me some blues lyrics he's written. Really good ones. His big mistake though, was he sent me a sound file of him singing them. I thought "Damn this guy can actually sing".

We get this band going and everything and each time we jam, I hear so much improvement in Levi and Justin. Not that they sucked to begin with but I just got back from jamming and I heard stuff today I was really impressed by. That harmonica was WAILING!

Levi has really become a solid drummer. Everything is getting so much better. I better up my game.


Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Recent Sun Stuff....

It's been forever and a day since the weblog has been updated.

Hopefully 2015 will be a year where creative endeavors are front and center.....

It's actually been a little over a year and a half since Devil Tree started jamming and creating original music together in a shed in a backyard in Midwest City.

We have stayed busy and creative, although big life changes in members' worlds have cut in on our sessions a bit the last couple of months.

We did have a fruitful session last week however out of which came a song we are happy with and which will be uploaded here shortly as soon as the video editing is complete.

"Soul Defender" is a song that just happened while we were riffing and letting the music create it's own mood and direction, and the lyrics came after some of the more solid structural ideas were in place.

That's actually my favorite way to do music and I think its going to me more common with our sessions.

There have been a few times where I was really kind of high and tranced out just stewing in the the experimenting and free form playing of the band without any words at all.

From there, certain images or concepts begin to suggest themselves and the lyrics start as fragments that evolve a bit until there is a whole written verse structure.

With a lot of our early material the lyrics and melody ideas were brought to the band and they tried, successfully in my opinion, to build a song from that. But the other way--building from the live sound--well, that works better in so many ways.

So we'll definitely be experimenting more with that stream of consciousness mode!

Stay tuned for the soon to be posted video of "Soul Defender"!


Sunday, January 4, 2015

Mr. Levi Becker, percussions!
Yesterday was a great session! We were all getting used to using the JamHub, which is a terminal for headphones to allow us to rock silently as it were. I will probably blog about the Great Noise Debacle at a later date, but suffice it for now to say that Alan, Brent and Erick dug deep to solve the problem of noise pollution, which Rock and Roll ain't, I've heard. There is a fine line between being good neighbours and facilitating artistic expression.

We were stopped dead in our tracks till the JamHub was introduced, unless we wanted to argue with police...anyway, it lets us all hear each other  and adjust for mixing and recording, and it was very different.

Some of us loved it, some were'nt so sure. But overall, its going to make us a better unit because it lets you hear, up close, every little mistake. It also allows us to record tracks with selective instruments and vocals--we can hear all of  them on our headphones but choose which sounds we want to actually record, which lets us go back and lay in multi tracks for cleaner sound.

We rehashed a song we've done many times every session now, Love is a Suicide, and though at first I was getting a little tired of the same song every session, at the end of the jam I understood that in order to become good, we've got to make every song as perfect as we can get it. You could hear a major difference after so many runs, weekend after weekend. Getting tighter, cleaner, and working out bugs.

We also began work on a new song, tentatively titled the Ace of Cups, a song about holding out for the restoration of love no matter what bumps come ina  relationship, even apparent endings. We feel good about it.

Working on new material after focusing on earlier tunes is a good way to unwind...the ongoing efforts feel alot like work but playing with new stuff is a great way to unwind and let go after some intense efforts.

I feel thankful to be in this band and appreciate everyone there. A new set of electric drums was also part of the day's experimentation and Levi took them pretty quick.

Erick and Alan gearing up!

Brent: What, me worry?

Levi at work!

We've got this.

Jamming is good!