My First Video Ever – High Wire Part 1

It thought it would be appropriate to include a little dark waters back story in this post as well as some thoughts on creating my first video ever.

Well, it’s been a long time coming, but I finally got over my fear of the whole “Video” thing, which really boils down to a typical, ordinary fear of the unknown (which is what keeps most people from moving forward with their dreams) and I got myself a copy of a pretty decent video editing package called MAGIX Movie Edit Pro 2013 Premium. Now, I know it isn’t one of the industry standards like Adobe Premiere Pro, or Final Cut Pro, or Sony Vegas Pro, but it did make it to #4 on the 2013 Professional Video Editing Software Comparison and Reviews page.

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I got it for a wicked discount, and I got the Pro Premium version which as 99 tracks of Audio and Video, does multi-cam editing, can capture directly from a connected camera, record screen capture video, and edit and burn 3D videos and DVD’s. So for me, it’s a good place to start with a lot of must-have standard FX that I can use.

PLEASE help me by sharing it with your friends, liking it on YouTube, Subscribe to my channel… all that will help. I’ve got a lot more videos on the way, in fact I plan to produce a video for every single track I’ve ever recorded before I start work on my next album.

Expect the next video’s to get progressively better as I hone my skills and learn more about the capabilities of the software. I have ideas that have been slow cooking in the crock-pot of my creative imagination since back in my Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds days. I just have to learn how to use the available tools to make stuff happen that’ll blow your mind. Stay tuned!

Incidentally this is the same software that my son Jerry III is using for the videos of his Simon and Adrien cartoons!

Dark Waters Back Story

Way back in the early 1980’s is where this story begins. I had moved to New Milford, CT and landed on my friend Randy McQuilkin’s couch. I met Randy when we both worked for Arrowhead Enterprises in New Milford. Randy was a very friendly, kind, soft-spoken guy and we hit it off right away. There was a bar right across the street from the factory where we all got together after work, and Randy lived about 50 yards from that. It wasn’t long before Randy invited me to party at his house. We became really good friends.

For a couple of years I hung out with Randy at his house, had lots of long weekend parties, and generally did what most twenty-somethings did. Party Party Party. I played guitar and jammed out a lot at some of those parties. I wrote the song Waiting and Waiting while sitting on the floor in Randy’s living room. I remember his girlfriend at the time, Wendy, saying she was so glad that was over because it took hours and I had to keep playing the same parts of the song over and over again and I was using their stereo. No headphones. Old school stuff – guitar in hand, paper notebook on the floor, with a dual cassette deck “sequencing” various different parts of a jam I did with my brother Mark into a whole new order which became the song eventually.

Wendy wasn’t in the picture at first. I brought Randy to my sister Linda’s wedding to her current husband Howard back in maybe 81? 82? I can’t remember exactly when it was and I’m too lazy to ask my sister, even though she’s on Facebook and nowadays with all this technology all the info you could ever want is at your fingertips. But I’m too lazy to stop typing and ask, so I’ll just say it was the early 80’s. Randy met Wendy there, at the wedding, and they hit it off. She moved from VT to CT to live with Randy and I ended up living with them, renting a room from them for a long time.

So, way after me and Randy met in 1980 or 81, after Wendy moved in and I started renting a room from them, I still had no idea that Randy was a poet. We had a lot of the same philosophical views, we both liked to smoke weed and hike in the Northwestern Connecticut woods. We drank, we stayed up all night pontificating, and yet I had no idea even after a couple of years of “our conversation” the bomb Randy was about to drop on me.

Randy and I had been avid hikers, always going out into the woods to get stoned and hike around pretending we were one of the Fellowship of the Ring or something. That was a big thing back then for us, to get stoned and go hiking. It was something we did frequently. Anyway, one day Randy and I were hiking somewhere North of New Milford, CT when Randy said to me, “Do you know I write Poetry?”. I said, no, of course I didn’t and he asked me if I’d like to hear some. I said “Sure”. And then he proceeded to not speak, but sing a half a dozen songs while we were hiking along. These poems were actually songs and were complete, with hooks, verses, choruses, etc. I couldn’t believe it. I asked him if he’d like to put some real music to those poems and of course he said OK and the rest is history.

I was pretty much a minimum wage earning dead-beat back then (hey, I was in my 20′s) and so I convinced Randy to take out a loan with the Credit Union where he worked and so he did, and we purchased a Fostex 160 4-Track, a Yamaha digital effects processor, and a Boss Dr. Rhythm drum machine. We borrowed the guitars and used a Casio mini-key synth that Mike Young had, and we recorded the entire album in a couple of short months on the 4 track.

The amazing thing is, that when we started I asked Randy to give me the lyrics for the songs we were going to include in Dark Waters. But he couldn’t, because he never wrote them down!!!! That’s right, Randy wrote all of his poetry in his head. And he memorized it. To this day, 25 or so years later, he still does this. I had to get Wendy to write down the lyrics for me and I still have those original lyrics sheets today.

In 2004 I began re-working the original 4 track recordings and reverse engineering them into Cubase and got everything recorded except Randy’s vocals. It all started with a crappy home-made digital drum kit I built in Steinberg’s HAlion 3 sampler, a crappy digitally sampled bass guitar, and all done on 32 bit Cubase 2, then 3, then 4… and eventually I abandoned it around the time I started working on renovating my VT house in 2005. After I moved to VT in 2006, I started working on music again and eventually released Life and Death on March 27, 2009 under the artist name Scary Tales. I released the album Tip of the Sword on March 21, 2011, also under the artist name Scary Tales. In late 2012, after releasing my third single with Alan Morgan, All That Far, on October 1, 2012, I started work on Dark Waters again.

Unfortunately, there was no way I would be able to work with Randy again for various reasons, so I decided as the co-author of the work and the writer and arranger of all of the music on this album, I was not going to let this brilliant piece of musical work die on the vine. It’s bad enough that it took some 25 years or so for it to be released to the public, but thanks to the Internet and the ability for anybody to create and release professional recordings without relying on a Record Company it is finally going to see the light of day! Of course, Randy will be receiving his share of any sales, I’ll make sure of that.

Since I had abandoned the project, I had done a lot of procurement of software and plugins for the recording studio, upgraded to 64-bit Cubase 6.5, and had an arsenal of new instruments to work with. the first thing I did was migrate all of the MIDI drum parts to the new ToonTrack Superior Drummer 2.0 platform, migrate all of the MIDI bass guitar parts to the Spectrasonics Trilian platform, and re-assess all of the remaining MIDI programmed parts. I got rid of some and added some, and completely re-recorded all of the guitars and solos.

In the end, it is my best work yet, I think. Dark Waters has a sultry smoothness and cerebral feel that I have always liked in music, mostly old school stuff that just doesn’t exist anymore like old Alan Parsons, Pink Floyd, old Rush… all those bands that were dominant influences around the time we wrote Dark Waters together in Randy’s spare bedroom which we converted into a poor man’s 4-track studio.

I’ve never been one to compare myself to other musicians. I’ve always thought of myself and my creations as 100% original, not like anybody elses music. But, of course, I’m human and I am certainly influenced by the music that I listen to and like. Around the time that we wrote Dark Waters, the bands I listened to a lot were Rush, Frank Zappa, Pink Floyd, The Eagles, Heart, Peter Frampton, Lynyrd Skynyrd, J Geils, Phil Collins, Genesis, ELO, The Doors, Led Zepellin, The Who, Blue Oyster Cult… and some of the “New Wave” bands of the original MTV days like DEVO, The Cars, Talking Heads, A Flock of Seagulls… and I can’t tell you, but maybe you can tell me, what influences ended up in Dark Waters. I just don’t know. I wrote the music to wrap it around the melodies and lyrics that Randy was feeding me for these songs, and they just seemed to come from that place, my source, God, the Universe, Intention, whatever you want to call it. It just flowed out of me like a faucet as soon as I turned it on and set out to create something.

I hope you enjoy the album. You can listen to it for free here:

 

(if the player above does not show up on your browser, try these links)http://www.jerryboutotmusic.com/jerry-boutot-albums/darkwaters/
or here
http://www.reverbnation.com/jerryboutot/album/44850-dark-waters

And don’t forget to get on my mailing list. For 72 hours, September 28, 29, and 30, I’ll be selling MP3 versions of the album on my web site with a coupon code. If you get on my mailing list I’ll be sending out that coupon code to all list members just prior to the sale.

Get on the mailing list here:
http://www.jerryboutotmusic.com/landing/

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Love and Prosperity to you ALL! Have an AWESOME Day!