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Top 100 dub albums
I need to cross off what I already have and start exploring the rest.
Maybe this can soundtrack the remodel of the basement…
Or – Start a collection and I’ll make a dub night at a bar somewhere…
Or – I’ll forget about it until I happen to look on here 3-4 months from now…
any way it works out, it’s a cool list.
I’m bored. This happens periodically. I get busy with one thing or another and things just fall off. Then I realize that I’m not quite as busy as I thought and all this interesting stuff that I used to care about has fallen to the wayside.
One extraordinarily cool project is nearing completion. I’ve been working on a compilation with some amazing bands and great friends for a great cause, and it is almost a real physical product.
The compilation is made-up of live recordings from various Jason Noble benefit shows, and (as if it needed to be stated) the proceeds will benefit Jason. I was lucky enough to record some great bands with minimal technological challenges and see this through to a real release. The album was mixed with Kevin Ratterman (and Jason and I) back at the Funeral Home and is being mastered by Bob Weston at Chicago Mastering Service. It should be coming out this Winter. I need to work up a Kickstarter campaign to help defray some of the upfront costs and get this thing out into the world.
In other news (highly related to the boredom coming out of one project and going into nowhere specific), I’ve dusted off some of my toys in the basement. Bleeps and blips, grinding cacophonies, fractured beats, and flashing lights abound. Nothing quite worth sharing, but certainly fun ways to spend some of those unspent energies remaining after the real-life activities (working and the like) get their share of my time. Maybe I’ll focus some of that into a real and purpose-built solo project. But there’s another side of me that wants to get out and record more live stuff.
I’m half way between a usable and decent sounding mobile rig and a truly professional rig. The first incarnation of my mobile rig has served me well. I still can’t believe the last Shipping News record was recorded by me. It also captured Shellac, Bonnie Prince Billy, and some of my favorite bands from a golden age of local music. All of that stuff has come out well, but with upgraded converters and mic preamps, I’m only 8 pres away from a killer mobile rig. I can’t bring myself to make the investment because recording has been firmly in the hobby space. Part of me just wants to get back out there and be active to justify to myself that it is worth going after. I’m not looking to get rich (that’s for my retirement account to take care of), but if the hobby can pay for itself and get some cool stuff out into the world, then I’d be pretty satisfied with that balance.
That being said…who wants to go record something?
The Christmas season is a great time to make lists. Here’s another list of things I’d like to have.
I know I’m hard to shop for. How about some ideas? They even include various price ranges instead of all expensive things (comparatively at least).
- BYOC Tubescreamer kit – $95
- BYOC Tri-boost kit – $95
- OLC Eclipse Valve kit – $120
- Modtone Coliseum Reverb – $130
- Malekko Ekko Delay – $150
- Moog MF-101 LPF – $280
- Dwarfcraft ECT – $270
- Oakley VCO – £33
- Oakley VCO/LFO – £28
- Oakley COTA Filter – £32
- Oakley Noise – £32
- Oakley S&H – £29
- 4ms Rotating Clock Divider & Shuffling Clock Multiplier kits – $22 each (PCB and Chip Kits)
- Peter Nappi Julius boots – $695 (Bitter Chocolate)
It’s interesting to scroll back through the variations on this site through the years. Some of these I had completely forgot about. Click the dates with * for a more likely chance to see a noticeable change.
By: Rudyard Kipling
If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you
But make allowance for their doubting too,
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:
If you can dream–and not make dreams your master,
If you can think–and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build ‘em up with worn-out tools:
If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it all on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breath a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on!”
If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with kings–nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you;
If all men count with you, but none too much,
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And–which is more–you’ll be a Man, my son!
What if I made all the stuff that I had floating around in my head and outfitted a real high quality studio with my own creations? It would be so much cheaper than buying things from other companies. We’re talking about thousands of dollars per unit which actually contain hundreds of dollars in parts. If I did the homework and made things to fit my ideal machine, not some R&D department’s view of what the customer wants, then I’d have one hell of a studio on my hands and potentially a new business opportunity. Every electronics designer and audio equipment company had to start that way. Someone made something and someone else liked it and asked for one. If I made good stuff then it could be a viable business opportunity, and I don’t have it in me to make something that isn’t good.
So here’s my list of products in just the mastering studio ideas that are floating around in my head. The circuits can be researched from existing units and designed to incorporate my twist on the functionality of the unit. Then of course, I’ll take over the world.
- Passive Summing Mixer
- 16 channels summed down to 2
- L-C-R as switches allowing mono inputs from a DAW or stereo sub-mixes to 2 channels
- Switchable make-up gain from a tube amplifier or a low noise 990-based twin discrete amplifier
- Pultec-style with a mid circuit added and tube gain stage
- EMI-style with iron transformers for color
- Precision 6-band with 990’s for transparency and surgical corrections
- Vari-μ styled tube compressor
- Optical and VCA limiter/compressor
- Precision compressor/limiter for transparent gain control
- Mastering Console and Monitor Controller
- Input/Output selection
- Mid-Side Processing
- Processing Order/Re-order capabilities
- Switchable Transformerless or Transformer-choice network before output
- Monitor switching with level calibration and dimming pad
And to think….this stuff is just what I’m thinking about in one section of what I’d like to build. There are still recording things like preamps, eqs, and compressors. After that you can get into all the effects and synthesis projects. I really just need to win the lottery and setup a laboratory to see this all through.
I’ve created a projects page to show some of the things that I’ve been working on outside of work and some of the things that I’d like to work on. Some are more realistic or achievable than others. All of them stem from a relatively new discovery (within the past year) that I get the most satisfaction out of life as a whole when I am creating something. Whether I’m following directions in a kit or making up things on my own, having something that didn’t exist before sitting in front of me at the end of a project makes me more satisfied than most other endeavors.