Output Before Input

Output before Input EXTRA POST #301 - 2022.11.26

🎡 Output before Input #301 - 2022.11.12

Sometimes things just happen

Output before Input #300 - 2022.11.12

🎡 Output before Input #300 - 2022.11.12

Reprise through new eyes

Output before Input #299 - 2022.11.11

🎡 Output before Input #299 - 2022.11.11

The world inside

Output before Input #298 - 2022.11.11

🎡 Output before Input #298 - 2022.11.11

Light shining through the cracks in your carefully-built wall

Output before Input #297 - 2022.11.10

🎡 Output before Input #297 - 2022.11.10

First time working the parachute

Output before input #296 - 2022.11.09

🎡 Output before Input #296 - 2022.11.09

All souls march

Output before Input #295 - 2022.11.08

🎡 Output before Input #295 - 2022.11.08

Band of rats dancing

Output before Input #294 - 2022.11.08

🎡 Output before Input #294 - 2022.11.08

Walking through a big empty skyscraper

Output before Input #293 - 2022.11.07

🎡 Output before Input #293 - 2022.11.07

(melody from my dream)

The slog it takes to make something look easy

Output before Input #292 - 2022.11.06

🎡 Output before Input #292 - 2022.11.06

Shock absorbers

Output before Input #291 - 2022.11.05

🎡 Output before Input #291 - 2022.11.05

Bad vibrations

Output before Input #290 - 2022.11.03

🎡 Output before Input #290 - 2022.11.03

(This one came straight out of my dream)

You don’t have to stumble and trip on this path, you can actually fly.

Output before Input #289 - 2022.11.01

🎡 Output before Input #289 - 2022.11.01

Gradually sinking into the earth

Output before Input #288 - 2022.10.31

🎡 Output before Input #288 - 2022.10.31

Scribbling in the margins

Output before Input #287 - 2022.10.30

🎡 Output before Input #287 - 2022.10.30

Feeling like a kid again

Output before Input #286 - 2022.10.29

🎡 Output before Input #286 - 2022.10.29

Titration

Output before Input #285 - 2022.10.27

🎡 Output before Input #285 - 2022.10.27

Receiving radio transmission

Output before Input #284 - 2022.10.24

🎡 Output before Input #284 - 2022.10.24

Riding a multidimensional bicycle

Output before Input #283 - 2022.10.24

🎡 Output before Input #283 - 2022.10.24

Patterning

Output before Input #282 - 2022.10.22

🎡 Output before Input #282 - 2022.10.22

Devil on your shoulder

Output before Input #281 - 2022.10.21

🎡 Output before Input #281 - 2022.10.21

Sand going down the hopper

Output before Input #280 - 2022.10.19

🎡 Output before Input #280 - 2022.10.19

Rehearsed decay

Output before Input #279 - 2022.10.18

🎡 Output before Input #279 - 2022.10.18

The edge of discomfort

Output before Input #278 - 2022.10.18

🎡 Output before Input #278 - 2022.10.18

This side of discomfort

Output before Input #277 - 2022.10.16

🎡 Output before Input #277 - 2022.10.16

Kneading bread

Output before Input #276 - 2022.10.16

🎡 Output before Input #276 - 2022.10.16

Tumbling rocks

Output before Input #275 - 2022.10.15

🎡 Output before Input #275 - 2022.10.15

Walking by their window and watching them dance

Output before Input #274 - 2022.10.14

🎡 Output before Input #274 - 2022.10.14

Who let the triangles into the square party?

Output before Input #273 - 2022.10.13

🎡 Output before Input #273 - 2022.10.13

Pulling a cart through mud

Output before Input #272 - 2022.10.12

🎡 Output before Input #272 - 2022.10.12

Birds flying overhead

Output before Input #271 - 2022.10.11

🎡 Output before Input #271 - 2022.10.11

I don’t understand the dance of this people

Output before Input #270 - 2022.10.10

🎡 Output before Input #270 - 2022.10.10

Choking on fear

Output before Input #269 - 2022.10.09

🎡 Output before Input #269 - 2022.10.09

Passing through the relaxis

Output before Input #268 - 2022.10.08

🎡 Output before Input #268 - 2022.10.08

Shivering even though its not cold

Output before Input #267 - 2022.10.07

🎡 Output before Input #267 - 2022.10.07

Scrapbook of shame

Output before Input #266 - 2022.10.06

🎡 Output before Input #266 - 2022.10.06

Do the same thing again but this time think “what if it were easy?”

Output before Input #265 - 2022.10.06

🎡 Output before Input #265 - 2022.10.06

It’s literally painful to cry

Output before Input #264 - 2022.10.03

🎡 Output before Input #264 - 2022.10.03

When you keep having to take off your sweater and put it back on again because every time the sun goes behind a cloud it drops 15 degrees

Output before Input #263 - 2022.10.02

🎡 Output before Input #263 - 2022.10.02

Hanging by fingers forgetting you have wings

Output before Input #262 - 2022.09.30

🎡 Output before Input #262 - 2022.09.30

Pushing beyond limits

Output before Input #261 - 2022.09.28

🎡 Output before Input #261 - 2022.09.28

Thrive on change

Output before Input #260 - 2022.09.26

🎡 Output before Input #260 - 2022.09.26

Being home after years away

Output before Input #259 - 2022.09.25

🎡 Output before Input #259 - 2022.09.25

Walking through walls

Output before Input #258 - 2022.09.24

🎡 Output before Input #258 - 2022.09.24

The dragonfly’s dance

Output before Input #257 - 2022.09.23

🎡 Output before Input #257 - 2022.09.23

Packing for a trip

Output before Input #256 - 2022.09.22

🎡 Output before Input #256 - 2022.09.22

Two to the eighth

Output before Input #255 - 2022.09.21

🎡 Output before Input #255 - 2022.09.21

Finger guns

Output before Input #254 - 2022.09.20

🎡 Output before Input #254 - 2022.09.20

Taking off the old rags to wash in the river on a sunny day

Output before Input #253 - 2022.09.19

🎡 Output before Input #253 - 2022.09.19

Friends drop by when you’re feeling lonely

Output before Input #252 - 2022.09.18

🎡 Output before Input #252 - 2022.09.18

Potential energy

Output before Input #251 - 2022.09.16

🎡 Output before Input #251 - 2022.09.16

Internet glory

Output before Input #250 - 2022.09.15

🎡 Output before Input #250 - 2022.09.15

The dead rise just to dance down the street

Output before Input #249 - 2022.09.15

🎡 Output before Input #249 - 2022.09.15

Pushing everybody away

Output before Input #248 - 2022.09.14

🎡 Output before Input #248 - 2022.09.14

Mysterious shimmer

Output before Input #247 - 2022.09.14

🎡 Output before Input #247 - 2022.09.14

Doubts under the surface

Output before Input #246 - 2022.09.13

🎡 Output before Input #246 - 2022.09.13

Give the best you’ve got, even if it’s not good enough.

Output before Input #245 - 2022.09.12

🎡 Output before Input #245 - 2022.09.12

It turns out you never had to hold your breath at all

Output before Input #244 - 2022.09.12

🎡 Output before Input #244 - 2022.09.12

Looking at the sky from under the water

Output before Input #243 - 2022.09.11

🎡 Output before Input #243 - 2022.09.11

Balloon pop

Output before Input #242 - 2022.09.11

🎡 Output before Input #242 - 2022.09.11

Grinding without ease

Output before Input #241 - 2022.09.08

🎡 Output before Input #241 - 2022.09.08

My throat and breathing were stuck at Eβ™­; singing along with this helped.

Output before Input #240 - 2022.09.07

🎡 Output before Input #240 - 2022.09.07

Going out for a run

Output before Input #239 - 2022.09.06

🎡 Output before Input #239 - 2022.09.06

Stuck in the walls looking out

Output before Input #238 - 2022.09.05

🎡 Output before Input #238 - 2022.09.05

Glitch pastoral

Output before Input #237 - 2022.09.04

🎡 Output before Input #237 - 2022.09.04

Juggling + people keep tossing you knives

Output before Input #236 - 2022.09.03

🎡 Output before Input #236 - 2022.09.03

Record needle dragging over aged skin

Output before Input #235 - 2022.08.27

🎡 Output before Input #235 - 2022.08.27

Running across the surface of the water

Output before Input #234 - 2022.08.27

🎡 Output before Input #234 - 2022.08.27

Don’t be afraid of being alone

Output before Input #233 - 2022.08.26

🎡 Output before Input #233 - 2022.08.26

Bees!

Output before Input #232 - 2022.08.26

🎡 Output before Input #232 - 2022.08.26

Siblings working together

Output before Input #231 - 2022.08.25

🎡 Output before Input #231 - 2022.08.25

Sewing stitches

Output before Input #230 - 2022.08.24

🎡 Output before Input #230 - 2022.08.24

Downhill no brakes

Output before Input #229 - 2022.08.23

🎡 Output before Input #229 - 2022.08.23

Loosen up the old knots

Output before Input #228 - 2022.08.22

🎡 Output before Input #228 - 2022.08.22

Bees get aggressive late in the season

Output before Input #227 - 2022.08.19

🎡 Output before Input #227 - 2022.08.19

Heat rising from the road

Output before Input #226 - 2022.08.18

🎡 Output before Input #226 - 2022.08.18

Pass the goddamned butter

Output before Input #225 - 2022.08.17

🎡 Output before Input #225 - 2022.08.17

Taunts that still haunt

Output before Input #224 - 2022.08.16

🎡 Output before Input #224 - 2022.08.16

Periods of quiet

Output before Input #223 - 2022.08.15

🎡 Output before Input #223 - 2022.08.15

Coda

Output before Input #222 - 2022.08.15

🎡 Output before Input #222 - 2022.08.15

Journey’s end

Output before Input #221 - 2022.08.12

🎡 Output before Input #221 - 2022.08.12

Journey’s beginning

Output before Input #220 - 2022.08.08

🎡 Output before Input #220 - 2022.08.08

The night stares back at you

Output before Input #219 - 2022.08.07

🎡 Output before Input #219 - 2022.08.07

Restless lute player

Output before Input #218 - 2022.08.06

🎡 Output before Input #218 - 2022.08.06

Punching walls because it feels good

Output before Input #217 - 2022.08.06

🎡 Output before Input #217 - 2022.08.06

Dockworker’s lament

Output before Input #216 - 2022.08.05

🎡 Output before Input #216 - 2022.08.05

Getting weird when nobody’s watching

Output before Input #215 - 2022.08.05

🎡 Output before Input #215 - 2022.08.05

Getting the chores done

Output before Input #214 - 2022.08.04

🎡 Output before Input #214 - 2022.08.04

Slow zoom out

Output before Input #213 - 2022.08.04

🎡 Output before Input #213 - 2022.08.04

Repairing the phase shift array

Output before Input #212 - 2022.08.03

🎡 Output before Input #212 - 2022.08.03

Hovering around the edge of the slow dance

Output before Input #211 - 2022.08.01

🎡 Output before Input #211 - 2022.08.01

The food one universe over tastes different

Output before Input #210 - 2022.07.31

🎡 Output before Input #210 - 2022.07.31

River rocks

Output before Input #209 - 2022.07.31

🎡 Output before Input #209 - 2022.07.31

Tumbling rocks

Output before Input #208 - 2022.07.31

🎡 Output before Input #208 - 2022.07.31

Walking a new city before anybody else is awake

Output before Input #207 - 2022.07.30

🎡 Output before Input #207 - 2022.07.30

Stranded

Output before Input #206 - 2022.07.28

🎡 Output before Input #206 - 2022.07.28

Turtle and rabbit

Output before Input #205 - 2022.07.25

🎡 Output before Input #205 - 2022.07.25

Heat rising off the road melts your makeup

Output before Input #204 - 2022.07.24

🎡 Output before Input #204 - 2022.07.24

In my dream this was a song I was singing called “On Thin Ice”.

Output before Input #203 - 2022.07.22

🎡 Output before Input #203 - 2022.07.22

Shag carpet in really good condition

Output before Input #202 - 2022.07.19

🎡 Output before Input #202 - 2022.07.19

Each step on the sidewalk makes more sidewalk.

Output before Input #201 - 2022.07.16

🎡 Output before Input #201 - 2022.07.16

Scratching fingernails on the wall looking for a crack

Output before Input #200 - 2022.07.15

🎡 Output before Input #200 - 2022.07.15

Boss level

Output before Input #199 - 2022.07.15

🎡 Output before Input #199 - 2022.07.15

300-lb bruiser whose best friend is a rat named Twinkles

Output before Input #198 - 2022.07.14

🎡 Output before Input #198 - 2022.07.14

Skating on a lake

Output before Input #197 - 2022.07.14

🎡 Output before Input #197 - 2022.07.14

Juggling seven flaming knives

Output before Input #196 - 2022.07.13

🎡 Output before Input #196 - 2022.07.13

Multiple personalities prom

Output before Input #195 - 2022.07.12

🎡 Output before Input #195 - 2022.07.12

Groove virus spreads quickly and manifests differently in each host.

Output before Input #194 - 2022.07.12

🎡 Output before Input #194 - 2022.07.12

Riding a motorcycle away from an explosion and into the sunset

Output before Input #193 - 2022.07.11

🎡 Output before Input #193 - 2022.07.11

Projector malfunction at the theater

Output before Input #192 - 2022.07.07

🎡 Output before Input #192 - 2022.07.07

Snap-dancing to the ice cream shop with your crew

Output before Input #191 - 2022.07.07

🎡 Output before Input #191 - 2022.07.07

Sashaying through the thrift store

Output before Input #190 - 2022.07.06

🎡 Output before Input #190 - 2022.07.06

Foot on the accelerator

Output before Input #189 - 2022.07.06

🎡 Output before Input #189 - 2022.07.06

Pulled in every direction

Output before Input #188 - 2022.07.05

🎡 Output before Input #188 - 2022.07.05

Trying to play the concerto over the fireworks

Output before Input #187 - 2022.07.04

🎡 Output before Input #187 - 2022.07.04

Rolling along the walls

Output before Input #186 - 2022.07.03

🎡 Output before Input #186 - 2022.07.03

Conducting the honking duck orchestra

Output before Input #185 - 2022.07.03

🎡 Output before Input #185 - 2022.07.03

Going back into the house because you forgot your keys montage

Output before Input #184 - 2022.07.02

🎡 Output before Input #184 - 2022.07.02

Mosquito under the net

Output before Input #183 - 2022.07.02

🎡 Output before Input #183 - 2022.07.02

Regular guy on the beach

Output before Input #182 - 2022.07.01

🎡 Output before Input #182 - 2022.07.01

Wild blackberry patch

Output before Input #181 - 2022.06.30

🎡 Output before Input #181 - 2022.06.30

Hands on a typewriter

Output before Input #180 - 2022.06.30

🎡 Output before Input #180 - 2022.06.30

Swagger but then you slip

Output before Input #179 - 2022.06.29

🎡 Output before Input #179 - 2022.06.29

Don’t open your eyes or the dream will fade.

Output before Input #178 - 2022.06.28

🎡 Output before Input #178 - 2022.06.28

Sunset over the landfill.

Output before Input #177 - 2022.06.27

🎡 Output before Input #177 - 2022.06.27

Starting the day with a lullaby.

Output before Input #176 - 2022.06.26

🎡 Output before Input #176 - 2022.06.26

Waiting for appetizers

Output before Input #175 - 2022.06.23

🎡 Output before Input #175 - 2022.06.23

This rhythm seems to be stuck deep in my hands.

Output before Input #174 - 2022.06.23

🎡 Output before Input #174 - 2022.06.23

Circular breathing

Output before Input #173 - 2022.06.22

🎡 Output before Input #173 - 2022.06.22

I had a dream that my teeth kept falling out because they’d secretly been dentures and I hadn’t known. I think it influenced this sketch - centered around an unstable tonal foundation.

Output before Input #172 - 2022.06.22

🎡 Output before Input #172 - 2022.06.22

Hitting “snooze” when you get the day off

Output before Input #171 - 2022.06.21

🎡 Output before Input #171 - 2022.06.21

Walking around town on a sunny day, waving to all the neighbors

Output before Input #170 - 2022.06.21

🎡 Output before Input #170 - 2022.06.21

One of the things I love about guitar is how much you can do/imply with just three notes (in this case, one melody and two harmony) and two hands. I used to be a maximalist with harmony but lately I’ve been exploring how much the ear will fill in by itself.

For those who may be curious, this is my main guitar setup - the rig I’ve used for all of the Output before Input recordings.

The guitar is a Valley Arts custom Strat clone. The amp is a Yamaha THR-10C with a chip-modded TS-9/808 tube screamer in front. I love this setup because the amp sounds amazing and I can record it direct to the computer using the “voice memo” app with minimal fuss.

Output before Input #169 - 2022.06.20

🎡 Output before Input #169 - 2022.06.20

A meditation on pacing

Output before Input #168 - 2022.06.19

🎡 Output before Input #168 - 2022.06.19

Guitar people love things that are tricky or sound tricky to play on the guitar. I think this piece is me making fun of myself for being that way.

Output before Input #167 - 2022.06.19

🎡 Output before Input #167 - 2022.06.19

There are actual power chords in there.

Output before Input #166 - 2022.06.16

🎡 Output before Input #166 - 2022.06.16

Flirting with what might be called atonality - intentionally seeking the thing right next to the thing that makes harmonic sense.

Output before Input #165 - 2022.06.16

🎡 Output before Input #165 - 2022.06.16

Drawn to this sweet melody, dropped and deconstructed in tone.

Output before Input #164 - 2022.06.14

🎡 Output before Input #164 - 2022.06.14

Felt better than it sounds.

Output before Input #163 - 2022.06.13

🎡 Output before Input #163 - 2022.06.13

When you feel tired + don’t want to wake up but your dreams keep getting weirder so you get up anyhow

Output before Input #162 - 2022.06.13

🎡 Output before Input #162 - 2022.06.13

This one feels like it’s about the struggle to keep things simple.

Output before Input #161 - 2022.06.12

🎡 Output before Input #161 - 2022.06.12

Hipster dad rock.

Output before Input #160 - 2022.06.12

🎡 Output before Input #160 - 2022.06.12

Aggressively pastoral - like walking through a field and tripping on a bunch of stones.

Output before Input #159 - 2022.06.10

🎡 Output before Input #159 - 2022.06.10

This sounds like having a beautiful, enjoyable day with chronic pain.

Output before Input #158 - 2022.06.07

🎡 Output before Input #158 - 2022.06.07

Sometimes you have to just, you know, do a friggin’ guitar solo on some blues.

Output before Input #157 - 2022.06.07

🎡 Output before Input #157 - 2022.06.07

A slow walk through the wilds of arpeggioland.

Output before Input #156 - 2022.06.07

🎡 Output before Input #156 - 2022.06.07

Bells tolling on a distant planet.

Output before Input #155 - 2022.06.05

🎡 Output before Input #155 - 2022.06.05

Early morning jog, and maybe seeing some people along the way.

Output before Input #154 - 2022.06.05

🎡 Output before Input #154 - 2022.06.05

Seeking shadows

Output before Input #153 - 2022.06.04

🎡 Output before Input #153 - 2022.06.04

This idea took only a few minutes to conceive but I had to practice it a bit before it was recordable, even as a sketch.

I get an image of a bird going crazy with its mating dance and the other bird hasn’t decided whether to join in yet.

Output before Input #152 - 2022.06.04

🎡 Output before Input #152 - 2022.06.04

This has a very Papa M / Album Leaf thing going on. It probably would have sounded less sloppy if I’d capo’ed it but that’s the price you pay for making it up as you go.

Output before Input #151 - 2022.06.02

🎡 Output before Input #151 - 2022.06.02

I guess I had one more in me this morning - though it’s not some mind-blowing idea that just had to burst forth into being. It feels more like a coda - or an interlude - if anything.

Output before Input #150 - 2022.06.02

🎡 Output before Input #150 - 2022.06.02

This started as me playing along with #149 the first time I played it back. Listening to it now, it suggests “part 2” of #149 in a lot of ways.

Output before Input #149 - 2022.06.02

🎡 Output before Input #149 - 2022.06.02

This has a bit of a Francisco TΓ‘rrega vibe.

Output before Input #148 - 2022.06.01

🎡 Output before Input #148 - 2022.06.01

This is a friend trying to get you to dance at the party.

Output before Input #147 - 2022.06.01

🎡 Output before Input #147 - 2022.06.01

Total blank-mind improv - restless + searching but never landing really.

Output before Input #146 - 2022.06.01

🎡 Output before Input #146 - 2022.06.01

Sometimes searching out dissonance is just too tempting. It seems to happen for me a lot with this sort of decaying distortion tone - the beats between the waves are so juicy.

Output before Input #145 - 2022.05.31

🎡 Output before Input #145 - 2022.05.31

Riffing on a chord progression that kind of goes its own way after a while. It’s nice when that happens and I can roll with it. I’ve noticed that I often struggle to roll with it and trip over my own feet.

Output before Input #144 - 2022.05.31

🎡 Output before Input #144 - 2022.05.31

The melody came quickly when I sat down; this is a simple exploration of what else goes with that melody.

Output before Input #143 - 2022.05.30

🎡 Output before Input #143 - 2022.05.30

Just a taste of an idea. I get the image of some kind of twisted Newton’s cradle.

Output before Input #142 - 2022.05.30

🎡 Output before Input #142 - 2022.05.30

There’s usually a lot of implied other music going on in my mind, but in the case of this sketch it feels particularly empty with the stuff that’s missing.

Output before Input #141 - 2022.05.29

🎡 Output before Input #141 - 2022.05.29

This one’s a bit late for International Drone Day but I hope I’ll be forgiven.

Output before Input #140 - 2022.05.29

🎡 Output before Input #140 - 2022.05.29

Try as I might this one got away from me.

Output before Input #139 - 2022.05.25

🎡 Output before Input #139 - 2022.05.25

It’s like secret room music from Mario Bros.

Output before Input #138 - 2022.05.24

🎡 Output before Input #138 - 2022.05.24

Today, this was more about the tone for me than the, you know, music.

Output before Input #137 - 2022.05.23

🎡 Output before Input #137 - 2022.05.23

Bringing in a touch of the Wes Montgomery.

Output before Input #136 - 2022.05.23

🎡 Output before Input #136 - 2022.05.23

Improvised jazz melody. I just realized this morning that for an improv sketch practice, I don’t really play all that much jazz.

Output before Input #135 - 2022.05.22

🎡 Output before Input #135 - 2022.05.22

I would say this is “out there,” but it might be more accurate to say it’s “in there.” The Hedvig Mollestad influence is strong.

Output before Input #134 - 2022.05.22

🎡 Output before Input #134 - 2022.05.22

Sloppy and poppy

Output before Input #133 - 2022.05.21

🎡 Output before Input #133 - 2022.05.21

Riff somewhere between AC/DC and Pinback

Output before Input #132 - 2022.05.21

🎡 Output before Input #132 - 2022.05.21

Single-note slippery climb

Output before Input #131 - 2022.05.20

🎡 Output before Input #131 - 2022.05.20

This one brings real confrontational energy.

Output before Input #130 - 2022.05.20

🎡 Output before Input #130 - 2022.05.20

Sweet + cinematic, tentative.

Output before Input #129 - 2022.05.19

🎡 Output before Input #129 - 2022.05.19

A simple exploration, which nonetheless managed to jump the rails a bit.

Output before Input #128 - 2022.05.18

🎡 Output before Input #128 - 2022.05.18

This sketch isn’t sure what it wants to be when it grows up.

Output before Input #127 - 2022.05.17

🎡 Output before Input #127 - 2022.05.17

I think the theme here is “maintaining consistency” and how some days it’s easy and other days it’s all you can do.

Output before Input #126 - 2022.05.14

🎡 Output before Input #126 - 2022.05.14

Messy feelings this morning

Output before Input #125 - 2022.05.13

🎡 Output before Input #125 - 2022.05.13

Trudge through the sludge

Output before Input #124 - 2022.05.12

🎡 Output before Input #124 - 2022.05.12

I love the style of outlining melody that guitarists like Celestine Ukwu, Ray Phiri, or Ebo Taylor play. It sounds upbeat, but I find it quite a challenge to improvise at tempo and keep that feeling.

Output before Input #123 - 2022.05.10

🎡 Output before Input #123 - 2022.05.10

Sometimes I have a plan when I hit “record” but this one was a “hit record + see what comes out” moment.

Output before Input #122 - 2022.05.10

🎡 Output before Input #122 - 2022.05.10

Both hands on the fretboard this morning - I must have looked like Picasso’s guitarist.

Output before Input #121 - 2022.05.08

🎡 Output before Input #121 - 2022.05.08

Maybe it’s just me but I’m always amazed at how one instrument can play multiple sonic roles and the ear will fill things in with enough hints.

Output before Input #120 - 2022.05.08

🎡 Output before Input #120 - 2022.05.08

This makes me think of the old Latif Learned work.

Output before Input #119 - 2022.05.06

🎡 Output before Input #119 - 2022.05.06

A chord study. I tried a bunch of stuff this morning but it all came out so unfocused that it was unusable. It’s interesting how much of a window into my psyche this process has been.

Output before Input #118 - 2022.05.04

🎡 Output before Input #118 - 2022.05.04

This makes me think of riding on the train.

Output before Input #117 - 2022.05.03

🎡 Output before Input #117 - 2022.05.03

Full-on free-association. I was trying not to follow any of my patterns for too long.

Output before Input #116 - 2022.05.03

🎡 Output before Input #116 - 2022.05.03

I can’t stay away from the degraded I IV V harmonies.

Output before Input #115 - 2022.05.03

🎡 Output before Input #115 - 2022.05.03

Sinister beachside / desert situation (or is it?)

Output before Input #114 - 2022.05.02

🎡 Output before Input #114 - 2022.05.02

This is pretty much my default improv state - though kind of raw + sloppy today.

Output before Input #113 - 2022.05.02

🎡 Output before Input #113 - 2022.05.02

A cinematic theme, only too aggressive-sounding to be in the background.

Output before Input #112 - 2022.05.01

🎡 Output before Input #112 - 2022.05.01

Somersaulting melody

Output before Input #111 - 2022.04.30

🎡 Output before Input #111 - 2022.04.30

Something like a deconstructed/degraded Foo Fighters riff.

Output before Input #110 - 2022.04.29

🎡 Output before Input #110 - 2022.04.29

Navigating a labyrinth and not ever really finding the center.

Output before Input #109 - 2022.04.28

🎡 Output before Input #109 - 2022.04.28

I played a lot of Pink Floyd in my youth, so sometimes the David Gilmour vibe comes out a bit.

Output before Input #108 - 2022.04.27

🎡 Output before Input #108 - 2022.04.27

Countermelody invented from the bottom up.

Output before Input #107 - 2022.04.27

🎡 Output before Input #107 - 2022.04.27

Harmony invented from the top down.

Output before input #106 - 2022.04.26

🎡 Output before Input #106 - 2022.04.26

I heard somewhere that The Books were so-named because their music evolved like a book instead of being repetitive from one end of a song to another. That idea really sticks with me, and influenced this sketch.

Output before Input #105 - 2022.04.25

🎡 Output before Input #105 - 2022.04.25

I’ll call this one “Surf’s Up Sonata”

Output before Input #104 - 2022.04.24

🎡 Output before Input #104 - 2022.04.24

Getting some Don Henley vibes this morning.

Output before Input #103 - 2022.03.23

🎡 Output before Input #103 - 2022.04.23

Let your body relax and let the changing meter just carry you awayyyyy

Output before Input #102 - 2022.04.22

🎡 Output before Input #102 - 2022.04.22

Some guitar heroics for a Friday.

Output before Input #101 - 2022.04.21

🎡 Output before Input #101 - 2022.04.21

This is what the inside of my head sounds like this morning. So much going on in there, it’s hard to calm down - kind of all over the place.

Output before Input #100 - 2022.04.20

🎡 Output before Input #100 - 2022.04.20

I don’t know how many of these I thought I’d make, but 100 seemed like an outer bound when I started. How many ideas can one person have? I feel like I’ve barely scratched the surface.

Output before Input #99 - 2022.04.19

🎡 Output before Input #99 - 2022.04.19

Feeling a bit tender and humbled this morning.

Output before Input #98 - 2022.04.18

🎡 Output before Input #98 - 2022.04.18

This is some kind of jazz rock outland/parallel universe version of #96 (same morning, different take).

Output before Input #97 - 2022.04.18

🎡 Output before Input #97 - 2022.04.18

Same “seed” idea + chords as #96 (same morning), but taken in a chunkier direction.

Output before Input #96 - 2022.04.18

🎡 Output before Input #96 - 2022.04.18

I ended up recording three very different things this morning - I’m either feeling like a high achiever or can’t make up my mind where to sit in the breakfast hall.

Output before Input #95 - 2022.04.17

🎡 Output before Input #95 - 2022.04.17

I call this a “Falcor” - a never-ending story of chord resolution that sounds like it goes on forever but in reality is just three chords. We have Philip Glass to thank for single-handedly making this kind of circular resolution a thing.

Output before Input #94 - 2022.04.17

🎡 Output before Input #94 - 2022.04.17

I tend to focus a lot on harmonic mobility in my own writing but there’s always something interesting about playing simple changes with a particular feeling.

Output before Input #93 - 2022.04.16

🎡 Output before Input #93 - 2022.04.16

This lick made me wish I were in better shape. I was listening to High Life Kings yesterday so that’s undoubtedly why I have this kind of pattern in my head today.

Output before Input #92 - 2022.04.14

🎡 Output before Input #92 - 2022.04.14

A groove like this sounds easy to play and isn’t technically difficult, but can be tough to sustain consistently.

Output before Input #91 - 2022.04.13

🎡 Output before Input #91 - 2022.04.13

Inverted power chord (fourth under fifth) structures keep showing up in my improvisation. They sound inherently less resolved and powerful, which lends a bit more dramatic tension.

Output before Input #90 - 2022.04.10

🎡 Output before Input #90 - 2022.04.10

Bonus exploration today. Feels like outer space to me.

Output before Input #89 - 2022.04.10

🎡 Output before Input #89 - 2022.04.10

I watched Metal Lords last night and something must have transferred to my subconscious.

Output before Input #88 (Take 3) - 2022.04.09

🎡 Output before Input #88 (Take 3) - 2022.04.09

3-part series today.

This is the final take of 3. It’s quite different from the other takes (ultimately), but it also feels to me like the most interesting ideas of the improv started to take shape and get stated with more clarity here.

Output before Input #88 (Take 2) - 2022.04.09

🎡 Output before Input #88 (Take 2) - 2022.04.09

3-part series today.

This was a second take after I flubbed the first one (see Take 1), and I really liked it. But I realized after I stopped playing that my computer had run out of battery somewhere in the middle. This is a partial recording…

Output before Input #88 (Take 1) - 2022.04.09

🎡 Output before Input #88 (Take 1) - 2022.04.09

3-part series today.

I started with this recording, but I felt like I flubbed it too many times to share. I did another take and my computer ran out of battery right in the middle of the take :/ Since they’re all quite different I thought maybe it would be interesting to share them all as a window into the improvisation process.

Output before Input #87 - 2022.04.08

🎡 Output before Input #87 - 2022.04.08

Sinister steps through silent streets.

Output before Input #86 - 2022.04.08

🎡 Output before Input #86 - 2022.04.08

I don’t know why these pop melodies keep coming out. I must be feeling nostalgic.

Output before Input #85 - 2022.04.07

🎡 Output before Input #85 - 2022.04.07

I awoke with a little minor-ninth embellishment in my head and built this groove from that.

Output before Input #84 - 2022.04.05

🎡 Output before Input #84 - 2022.04.05

A bit of mischief today.

Output before Input #83 - 2022.04.04

🎡 Output before Input #83 - 2022.04.04

Just a little comfortable pocket. Sometimes it’s nice to be in a comfortable pocket.

Output before Input #82 - 2022.04.03

🎡 Output before Input #82 - 2022.04.03

Believe it or not, I was meditating on the pelvic floor and this riff was inspired by that.

Output before Input #81 - 2022.04.02

🎡 Output before Input #81 - 2022.04.02

The major chords of a triumphant soul.

Output before Input #80 - 2022.04.01

🎡 Output before Input #80 - 2022.04.01

I woke up with this melody in my head, which means I almost certainly stole it from somewhere. I turned it into something rambling and comfortable, probably because moving on is in my head today.

Output before Input #79 - 2022.03.31

🎡 Output before Input #79 - 2022.03.31

Today I’m thinking about being a kid, sneaking around in the early morning, trying to be clandestine but occasionally failing in our enthusiasm.

Output before Input #78 - 2022.03.30

🎡 Output before Input #78 - 2022.03.30

I’m thinking about my dad this morning, who introduced me to Frank Zappa. Growing up, he always encouraged my weirder guitar tendencies and took the stewardship of my musical taste seriously.

When I think of Frank Zappa, I think of ironic doo-wop, I think of whole tone abrasive guitar solos, and I think of crazy riffs in crazy meter. Some of that comes out here.

Output before Input #77 - 2022.03.29

🎡 Output before Input #77 - 2022.03.29

Me cruising along, doing my thing and then I threw my back out. I think I could have seen it coming if I knew where to look, but of course we never can see the thing in our blind spot.

Output before Input #76 - 2022.03.29

🎡 Output before Input #76 - 2022.03.29

A chord study.

Output before Input #75 - 2022.03.28

🎡 Output before Input #75 - 2022.03.28

At least once a week I have a meditation/stretching “improv” practice. This sketch feels a bit like those improvisations - just following what shows up and seeing where it takes you.

Output before Input #74 - 2022.03.27

🎡 Output before Input #74 - 2022.03.27

Perhaps a touch frantic, but I do like it.

Output before Input #73 - 2022.03.26

🎡 Output before Input #73 - 2022.03.26

Weirdly I got to this riff by playing “Everywhere” by Fleetwood Mac. I think it might play better on bass guitar, but I like it in this context too, even with the rough playing.

Output before Input #72 - 2022.03.26

🎡 Output before Input #72 - 2022.03.26

I seem to be really into these consistent quarter-note strum patterns lately - maybe as a result of wanting to fill the sonic space with a single take on a single instrument. And of course, any excuse to throw a major 7 or a minor 2 into a riff.

Output before Input #71 - 2022.03.26

🎡 Output before Input #71 - 2022.03.26

All chords resolve to each other if you really mean it.

Output before Input #70 - 2022.03.24

🎡 Output before Input #70 - 2022.03.24

I can’t escape the 90’s pop music with which I grew up. I accept that.

Output before Input #69 - 2022.03.23

🎡 Output before Input #69 - 2022.03.23

Kind of an Album Leaf or Papa M vibe to this one.

Output before Input #68 - 2022.03.22

🎡 Output before Input #68 - 2022.03.22

Jumping from one branch and hoping the next one will support my weight.

Output before Input #67 - 2022.03.21

🎡 Output before Input #67 - 2022.03.21

This short, nomadic interlude was all that came by the window this morning.

Output before Input #66 - 2022.03.20

🎡 Output before Input #66 - 2022.03.20

The tone is really beautiful in moments here - with a little development it could be really menacing.

Output before Input #65 - 2022.03.19

🎡 Output before Input #65 - 2022.03.19

Listening back to this, I think I stole part of a phrase from R.E.M. (and probably others). The overall thing sounds about like I feel this morning - like there’s some ability for ease to exist, but I missed it by going the hard way.

Output before Input #64 - 2022.03.17

🎡 Output before Input #64 - 2022.03.17

This riff reminds me of Pinback.

Output before Input #63 - 2022.03.16

🎡 Output before Input #63 - 2022.03.16

I almost have an aversion to playing full-on barre chord shapes in traditional harmonic structures; this is me confronting that.

Output before Input #62 - 2022.03.14

🎡 Output before Input #62 - 2022.03.14

This might sound weird or obvious, but it’s been an interesting challenge making something that’s improvised actually sound like things were planned along with any kind of consistent tempo. I can already see it having the effect of tightening up my guitar playing and composition in general - things are less rambly than they were when I was just playing this stuff by myself without hitting record. Which is not to say that there aren’t tons of flubs - don’t worry, there are still tons of flubs.

Output before Input #61 - 2022.03.13

🎡 Output before Input #61 - 2022.03.13

Sort of a chord inversion study.

Output before Input #60 - 2022.03.12

🎡 Output before Input #60 - 2022.03.12

Short, but I found the groove fun to play along with.

One struggle I’m having is the balance between wanting to make sure these ideas aren’t too rehearsed and the desire for them to come across in spite of not being practiced and occasionally stumbling while I’m improvising. I don’t practice enough to where my technique is flawless right now, and it makes me feel a bit self-conscious about sharing ideas with goofs in them. But I’m doing it anyway :)

Output before Input #59 - 2022.03.11

🎡 Output before Input #59 - 2022.03.11

I’m always a sucker for synching delay decay with tempo. I’m also always a sucker for patterns that repeat in non-4-time.

Output before Input #58 - 2022.03.10

🎡 Output before Input #58 - 2022.03.10

I think this is the shortest clip thus far.

Output before Input #57 - 2022.03.09

🎡 Output before Input #57 - 2022.03.09

I only realized this morning that the riffier progressions have mostly been “two ideas, contrasted and expanded” and not just one idea. The threshold for hitting “record” on them is usually “Ok, I’ve got two things that work well enough together, let’s improvise on that now.”

Output before Input #56 - 2022.03.08

🎡 Output before Input #56 - 2022.03.08

My first recording got corrupted and lost, so I guess this is my version of waking up and immediately being frustrated but trying to still access some calm.

Output before Input #55 - 2022.03.07

🎡 Output before Input #55 - 2022.03.07

Trying to stretch into more interesting rhythm/chord progressions, but I don’t think I got there today.

Output before Input #54 - 2022.03.06

🎡 Output before Input #54 - 2022.03.06

Minor seconds are some of the hardest intervals to play on the guitar, especially stacked (and sometimes even inverted), but the payoff is always interesting (to me, at least).

Output before Input #53 - 2022.03.06

🎡 Output before Input #53 - 2022.03.06

Again challending myself to “hit record first” and just start playing.

Output before Input #52 - 2022.03.04

🎡 Output before Input #52 - 2022.03.04

This was a relatively rare morning where I didn’t play a single note before hitting record.

Output before Input #51 - 2022.02.28

🎡 Output before Input #51 - 2022.02.28

A chord progression that takes inspiration from Hendrix’ “Hey Joe”.

Output before Input #50 - 2022.02.27

🎡 Output before Input #50 - 2022.02.27

I’m not sure how far I thought I was going to take this, but 50 seems like a milestone! I’m celebrating with this incredibly soft, rounded, understated melody. Look: I don’t control what comes out - when you roll out of bed + pick up a guitar, what happens: happens.

Output before Input #49 - 2022.02.26

🎡 Output before Input #49 - 2022.02.26

Woke up with a melody and turned it jazzy. Feels kind of frantic though.

Output before Input #48 - 2022.02.25

🎡 Output before Input #48 - 2022.02.25

Experimenting with related tonality through close harmonic structures. Which could probably be the title of the entire series.

Output before Input #47 - 2022.02.25

🎡 Output before Input #47 - 2022.02.25

Gradually degrading what should be a pleasant two-chord rhythm.

Output before Input #46 - 2022.02.24

🎡 Output before Input #46 - 2022.02.24

The tremolo sound here was inspired by Noga Erez’ “You So Done” from “Kids (Against the Machine)” which was in my head when I woke up.

Output before Input #45 - 2022.02.24

🎡 Output before Input #45 - 2022.02.24

I was thinking about Mattias Eklund’s “single-string” horizontal soloing on this one - although this sounds nothing like him.

Output before Input #44 - 2022.02.23

🎡 Output before Input #44 - 2022.02.23

Output before Input #43 - 2022.02.23

🎡 Output before Input #43 - 2022.02.23

Output before Input #41 - 2022.02.22

🎡 Output before Input #41 - 2022.02.22

Output before Input #42 - 2022.02.22

🎡 Output before Input #42 - 2022.02.22

Output before Input #40 - 2022.02.20

🎡 Output before Input #40 - 2022.02.20

Output before Input #39 - 2022.02.20

🎡 Output before Input #39 - 2022.02.20

Output before Input #38 - 2022.02.18

🎡 Output before Input #38 - 2022.02.18

Output before Input #37 - 2022.02.17

🎡 Output before Input #37 - 2022.02.17

Output before Input #36 - 2022.02.16

🎡 Output before Input #36 - 2022.02.16

Perhaps heavier than it needs to be, but then is there such a thing?

Output before Input #35 - 2022.02.15

🎡 Output before Input #35 - 2022.02.15

Output before Input #34 - 2022.02.15

🎡 Output before Input #34 - 2022.02.15

Output before Input #33 - 2022.02.13

🎡 Output before Input #33 - 2022.02.13

Today’s idea: what if an R&B chord progression was based on the Philip Glass rising-thirds chord trifecta?

Output before Input #32 - 2022.02.12

🎡 Output before Input #32 - 2022.02.12

Output before Input #31 - 2022.02.11

🎡 Output before Input #31 - 2022.02.11

Output before Input #30 - 2022.02.11

🎡 Output before Input #30 - 2022.02.11

Wiiide chords.

Output before Input #29 - 2022.02.10

🎡 Output before Input #29 - 2022.02.10

Hat trick today - possibly a first?

Output before Input #28 - 2022.02.10

🎡 Output before Input #28 - 2022.02.10

A bit of a riff stolen from the Grateful Dead, but taken in a different direction.

Output before Input #27 - 2022.02.10

🎡 Output before Input #27 - 2022.02.10

Tried to capture a melody I had when waking up, but I can hear it getting lost as I play it here. Oh well, that happens sometimes.

Output before Input #26 - 2022.02.08

🎡 Output before Input #26 - 2022.02.08

Sounds like it’s noodles for breakfast.

Output before Input #26 - 2022.02.07

🎡 Output before Input #26 - 2022.02.07

This one feels like hearing the slow birth of a chord progression + melody.

Output before Input #25 - 2022.02.07

🎡 Output before Input #25 - 2022.02.07

I had the idea for this kind of chimey, echo-ey, pedal-tone sound right before I went to bed + it stuck with me when I woke up.

Output before Input #24 - 2022.02.06

🎡 Output before Input #24 - 2022.02.06

Output before Input #23 - 2022.02.05

🎡 Output before Input #23 - 2022.02.05

Output before Input #22 - 2022.02.04

🎡 Output before Input #22 - 2022.02.04

Today I was thinking about the feelings that always come up together, and how hard it can be to figure out which one is actually happening right now.

Output before Input #21 - 2022.02.03

🎡 Output before Input #21 - 2022.02.03

Inspired, no doubt, by Hedvig Mollestad

Output before Input #19 - 2022.02.02

🎡 Output before Input #19 - 2022.02.02

Output before Input #20 - 2022.02.02

🎡 Output before Input #20 - 2022.02.02

Output before Input #18 - 2022.02.01

🎡 Output before Input #18 - 2022.02.01

Output before Input #17 - 2022.01.31

🎡 Output before Input #17 - 2022.01.31

Output before Input #16 - 2022.01.29

🎡 Output before Input #16 - 2022.01.29

Today I woke up with this melody in my head from a dream.

Output before Input #14 - 2022.01.28

🎡 Output before Input #14 - 2022.01.28

Output before Input #15 - 2022.01.28

🎡 Output before Input #15 - 2022.01.28

Output before Input #12 - 2022.01.26

🎡 Output before Input #12 - 2022.01.26

Output before Input #13 - 2022.01.27

🎡 Output before Input #13 - 2022.01.27

Output before Input #10 - 2022.01.24

🎡 Output before Input #10 - 2022.01.24

Output before Input #11 - 2022.01.25

🎡 Output before Input #11 - 2022.01.25

Output before Input #7 - 2022.01.20

🎡 Output before Input #7 - 2022.01.20

Output before Input #8 - 2022.01.23

🎡 Output before Input #8 - 2022.01.23

Output before Input #9 - 2022.01.23

🎡 Output before Input #9 - 2022.01.23

Output before Input #5 - 2022.01.18

🎡 Output before Input #5 - 2022.01.18

Output before Input #6 - 2022.01.19

🎡 Output before Input #6 - 2022.01.19

Output before Input #4 - 2022.01.17

🎡 Output before Input #4 - 2022.01.17

Output before Input #3 - 2022.01.15

🎡 Output before Input #3 - 2022.01.15

Output before Input #0 - 2022.01.13

🎡 Output before Input #0 - 2022.01.13

I just realized that my first post in this category wasn’t actually my first recording. Here’s a bonus episode zero :)

Output before Input #2 - 2022.01.14

🎡 Output before Input #2 - 2022.01.14

Output before Input #1 - 2022.01.14

🎡 Output before Input #1 - 2022.01.14

I’m often inspired by Tom Sach’s work. Recently I read about his philosophy of output before input, which is evidently something he learned from my quantitative design hero Edward Tufte.

I’ve started a daily “output before input” ritual for my guitar playing. Each morning that I successfully get out of bed without looking at my phone, I sit at my electric guitar and do a quick improvisation, usually 2-3 minutes in length. I’ve done enough now that I feel confident sharing them as their own category, and I’ll keep it up for as long as it bears something interesting to me. Hopefully anybody who listens will find it interesting as well.

Here’s the podcast on Pocket Casts, as a standard podcast feed, and as an Apple Podcasts-compatible link.