Here are some background notes on each of the songs
I wrote on my new CD Digital Woman.
Digital Woman is an album that I started recording and producing on February 20th, 2013, and then released it nearly a year later on February 1, 2014. Five of the songs were recorded on Logic 9, and the rest were recorded when Logic released version X. Throughout the process I studied and gained a lot of knowledge on audio engineering, including recording, mixing, and mastering, and applied these concepts to the songs. Although all songs are played by me on various keyboards and recorded on Logic by me, my goal was to have it appear as a full band playing. The name Digital Woman popped into my head when lying in bed one night trying to fall asleep. The name is a reflection that at one level most of the songs are about relationships with an elusive and ill-defined woman, one who is slightly out of grasp, and one who may indeed only exist in the digital or fantasy realm. These songs attempt to recreate those relationships acoustically. And yes, it's a window into some of my personal romantic relationships over the years....without naming names....although I do in one song, which I'll let you find for yourself :)
The First Time, The Last Time was written maybe two years ago, and finished about a year ago. It has straight forward lyrics and a catchy instrumental interlude after each chorus. I used some reversed piano sounds in a couple breakdowns. Some of the music might have been subconsciously inspired by Arcade Fire's The Suburbs.
I Will Take You Back was written about a year ago. is the first official song I recorded under the name Skatterplot. It has an unusual form and can almost be considered two different songs. There is a buildup that bridges both sections of the song. There are references to the Chicago “L” rapid transit system and The Beatles.
The beginning of There Goes My World was inspired by the Nine Inch Nails song Closer. Some say the verse when the whole band comes in sounds a bit like Alicia Key’s Empire State of Mind. It was written in March 2013.
Odd Boy was written sometime in early 2013. It is about a person who considered himself “odd” when he was young and yet he still felt he was just like everyone else. I think many listeners will relate to this and appreciate the positive message it contains. There is a guitar solo in the interlude. This, along with The First Time, The Last Time, are two of the most upbeat and danceable songs on the CD.
The First Time, The Last Time - Part II was written in July 2013. After messing around in Logic X, I stumbled across the opening string part, which is a loop in Logic X. I then I added percussion, piano, and harpsichord sounds, and recorded the instrumental section of The First Time, The Last Time with variations of it.
The name of the ballad Shiezo Yeung is about a girl that would not stop calling an ex-boyfriend, and all the boyfriend can think of is how young, innocent, and naive she is. The song is also about others, perhaps, as the lyrics change slightly and become more positive after the instrumental. I added a couple muffled voices in the background to give a sense of nostalgia and vagueness. The song was sped up a few beats to give it a little more motion. It was written in the summer of 2013.
Santa Monica Beat was written in the summer of 2013. It is my ode to the city Santa Monica, California and the lifestyle vibe I got there on a visit. Some of the elements and mix in this song, like The First Time, The Last Time - Part II was stumbled upon while messing around in logic.
Steal The Moon, one of the CD's ballads was written in spring of 2013. The first chorus is followed by the verse. There is no bass player in order to give it a lighter feel. However, there is a kick drum present through most of the song to establish motion and lay down a bit of a groove.
The Big Open Spaces Of Your Life was written in the summer of 2012. I was playing wooden xylophones that my good friend Amir gave me as a gift from his trip Vietnam when I stumbled upon the opening line of the tune. The tune original waited until close to the end to introduce the chorus, but I decided to make it come earlier. The lyrics “Time is a thief who works for life” was inspired by lyrics from the jazz tune Speak Low.
N Judah is an instrumental written near the end of 2013. The name is from a train line on the BART transit system in San Francisco that I've ridden on visits to that city. The beat came to me while playing around in Logic X. While at one of my regular monthly piano gigs at Ethiopian Diamond Restaurant in Chicago, I came up with the chords and later at home, the melody. Brad Meldhau has some influence to this song, as well as an African kind of beat. The drummers “change” in the middle of the song to keep it interesting.
Searchers the last of the three ballads on the CD was written in fall of 2013. It is about trying to cheer up a girl with low self-esteem who is in a very loving relationship. I think many listeners, male and female will feel a strong connection with the song and the poingent and in the end positive message I am trying to convey. The feel is inspired by Lana Del Rey’s Video Games. It is the only song on the CD in a triple meter throughout. This song uses virtually no percussion. The piano interlude was inspired by Ravel.