albums
Underway
2006 Wonday
Compilations
1993 Songs to Sleep By
1997 Songs to Sleep By 2
2002 Sunday Sampler
2002 Dad's Picks
1999 Mix 1 (sy55)
2010 Mix 2 (triton vocal)
2010 Mix 3 (triton instr.)
SY55
1991 Archives
1992 College Collection
1993 College Collage
1994 The Hermit
1997 Where's My Muse
1999 South or Southeast
Triton
2001 In the Margins
2002 Renewal
2002 Re-treat
2002 Convenience
2002 Back Up
2003 So So
2003 So On
2003 So Long
2003 Baby Steps
2003 Baby Talk
2004 Schmocial
2004 Brroom
2004 Chuckadee
2004 Disco Hike
2004 Extra Extra
2005 Coma Pill
2005 Ourboretum
2005 Jaminy
2005 Padden Drift
2005 Gorilla Love
2005 Aminals
2005 Vegibles
2006 Fruitine
2006 Dignored
2006 Miner
2006 Mouseculine
2006 Yata
2007 Zipit
2007 Sixawon
2007 Halfdosin
2007 Whatcom Home
2008 What Roses
2008 Pho Kit
2008 Composed Pile
2009 Decomposed Pie
2009 Swaddlicious
2010 Lost Train
Soft Synths
2011 Out the Margins
2011 Redebut
2011 Reprogression
2012 Working Progress
2013 Tripico
2014 Aerosol Concrete
2015 Reduced to Clear
2016 Motions
2017 The Walking Dad

Track List

# title lyrics time download listen started recorded rating
1 Click lyrics 6:05 download listen locally 2002-01-02 2004-03-23
2 Gentle - 6:02 download listen locally 2002-01-04 2004-03-25
3 Logic Test - 5:04 download listen locally 2002-01-13 2004-04-26
4 Comotoast - 3:49 download listen locally 2002-01-23 2004-03-31
5 Early lyrics 5:55 download listen locally 2002-01-26 2004-04-06
6 Logic Test 3 - 4:02 download listen locally 2002-01-28 2004-04-28
7 Deep Snow - 3:23 download listen locally 2002-01-30 2004-05-03
8 222 - 3:12 download listen locally 2002-02-02 2004-05-05
9 Ordered Sonar - 3:04 download listen locally 2002-02-05 2004-05-10
10 No Valentine Jam - 3:04 download listen locally 2002-02-14 2004-04-09
11 No Valentine Jelly - 2:43 download listen locally 2002-02-14 2004-04-09
12 No Valentine Honey - 1:35 download listen locally 2002-02-14 2004-04-09
13 Ditch - 7:42 download listen locally 2002-02-15 2004-04-13
14 Freedom Clock - 5:45 download listen locally 2002-02-16 2004-04-15
15 Relapse - 2:02 download listen locally 2002-02-22 2004-05-11
16 Vibrate - 7:22 download listen locally 2002-02-28 2004-04-22
17 Logic Reprise - 0:15 download listen locally - 2002-01-13
Total 71:04 play all locally album rating:

Notes

During my first winter in Bellingham, I enjoyed the cool, clean, rainy air so much that I never turned on the heat! I spent most of my waking life in my cold ("brr") room, either working, watching movies, reading, or making music. My excursions into the "real world" dwindled to once or twice a week; sometimes, if it was raining and really cold on the weekend, I wouldn't go outside for an entire week. After a while, I started missing seeing people outside on the trails (since it got dark earlier) and now that Christmas was over, I had no social opportunities planned for the next year. A rare thing happened. I began to feel a bit (ahem) lonely (cough). Fortunately (and characteristically), I didn't just play games and mope around in front of the TV; instead, I threw myself into tasks. I sorted all my receipts and records from the past 10 years, catalogued my old practice tapes, learned Logic (before it was bought by Apple), became very active on music newsgroups, and upgraded my main sequencer to Sonar. As part of the learning process, I created lots of test songs, which, although started during a small time period (January-February 2002) in a small room, are stylistically wide-ranging, my main taste of adventure during that time.

Gear:

These songs were started in 2002 using either Cakewalk / Sonar or Logic, and then finished in 2004 using Sonar 3.1.1. "Click" and "Early" have vocals and "Freedom Clock" has guitar piped through the Pod Pro. The Triton makes the rest of the noises.

Songs

Click

Woah, vocals! This is the first full-fleged vocal song since "Half Hour". I constructed the main groove and wrote the lyrics for the choruses ("I am bad...") back in 2002. In 2004 I fleshed out the rest of the music and improvised all of the chorus. I have no idea what the title has to do with the lyrics; it probably doesn't matter, since the lyrics themselves are mostly stream-of-consciousness. I really like the way this song turned out. It's a little muffled, but it's fun!

Lyrics to "Click":

INTRO:
  woah! travis has got some vocals?
  this is the first time i've recorded
  vocals in over a year
  my accent has gotten worse and worse
  uh yeah

  all right this is just an idea of the vocals
  of course, i don't want to make it introverted
  so this isn't gonna be about me
  it's gotta be about someone else
    (you hear that? someone else)
  i don't know the title, maybe "this is bad"
  it's called "click" currently

VERSE 1:
  when i was a kid i sat by myself
  i didn't know as i boarded the plane

  when i was a kid i sang by myself
  i didn't know it would always be that way

CHORUS 1:
  this is bad
  this is bad
  this is bad
  this is really bad

  this is bad
    (so why do you try?)
  this is bad
    (why do you persist?)
  this is bad
    (tell me, why do you keep doing this?)
  this is really bad

VERSE 2:
  when i was i a student
  i studied really hard
  got lucky at my classes
  and i even had a guitar

  i was gonna say car
    (guitar)
  what's wrong with a car?
    (a guitar is better)
  okay

   who needs a car
  when you've got your feet?

CHORUS 2:
  if this is bad
  if this is bad
  if this is bad
    (they said this is bad, travis)
  then i'm a bad, bad boy
    (you're a bad, bad boy)

  if this is bad
  if this is bad
  if this is bad
  then i'm a bad, bad boy
    (i told myself i wouldn't sing about myself)
    (what am I doing?)

VERSE 3:  [clav solo #1]
  is this the work of a man?

  okay, drop the accent, drop the accent

  this is my real accent
  i sound like every day (sure)
  this is how the travis sounds
  when he's out in northwest way

  this is how he sounds
  this is how i sound
  this is how i want to sound

BRIDGE:
  operatic, operatic, operatic, operatic
  what have you got up there in the attic?
  that's a stupid rap
  this is stupid rap
  travis' all your raps sound like poo poo...
    (to the left, to the right...)
  poo poo poo poo...
    (you're not right, you're not right...)
    (you're not right in the head)

VERSE 4:
  thank god for the instrumental versions
  vocal versions go in the trash
  listen to what you want
  put it on dad's picks or anybody's picks

  why do you run?  why do you read?
  why do you run?  why do you read?
  what do you want?  what do you need?
  what do you want?  what do you need?

  why can't you be like everyone else?
    (where did the music go?)
  where did the music go?
    (where did the music go?)
  why can't you be like everyone else?
    (travis you should know)
  why must you be so solo?
    (travis you should know)

  where did the music go?
  where did the music go?
  don't talk during the solo
  don't talk during solo

CHORUS 4:
  what do you want?  what do you need?
  what do you want?  what do you need?
  can you tell i've been
  listening to public image ltd recently?

  what do you want?  what do you need?
  what do you want?  what do you need?
  do i need to give them credit
  for that idea or is it me?

VERSE 5:
  annoyance factor
    (to the left, to the right...)
  annoyance factor
    (stand all night)
  annoyance factor
  alert alert alert
  gotta really high annoyance factor

CHORUS 5:
  this is bad
  this is bad
  this is bad
  and i'm a bad bad boy

  this is bad
  this is bad
  this is really bad
  and i'm a bad bad boy

VERSE 6:
  ok one more solo
  it's called a clav
  clav trav clav clav trav
  clav likes the trav
  clav writes the trav
  whatever

CHORUS 6:
  what does it matter what i see?
  what does it matter what i see?
  what does it matter what i see?
  it always sounds the same

  i always say the same thing anyway
  i always say the same thing anyway
  i always say the same thing anyway
  i always say the same thing anyway

VERSE 7:
  i like the instrumentals
  do you like the instrumentals?
    (yes i do)
  do you like it when
  you can put on a cd and not get irritated
  by the sound of travis' vocal chords?
    (yes we do, trav)
    (yes we do, trav)
    (we like it when there's peace and quiet)
  sorry

CHORUS 7:
  i am bad
  yes i am bad
  i am bad
  'cause i'm a bad bad boy

  oh, i am bad
  this is bad
  i am really bad
  and i'm a bad bad boy
    (sing it again)

  i am bad bad
  this is bad
  and i am bad
  and i'm a bad bad boy

  this is bad
    (i'm singing about myself)
  this is bad
    (like i said i wouldn't)
  this is bad
    (i guess i broke my promise)
  and i'm a bad bad boy

  spank me
  

Gentle

If "Click" was me being a "bad boy" (with the in-your-face rock), "Gentle" is my leap back into being a "good boy". I wanted to see if I could make some really pretty jazz. This starts off kind of "tender", with harp, strings, and light EP arpeggios; it reminds me of "Tension". When I tackled it again in 2004, I gave it a stronger groove, added sound effects, improved the dynamics, and ended up turning a somewhat drab new-age ditty into a miniature epic. I really like the way it turned out!

User Comments:

  1. "Cool song!" - Giovanna (2010-08-16)

Logic Test

This was the first song I started using Logic. I was testing Logic, Cubase, and Sonar, trying to decide which to buy. I quickly decided I didn't like Cubase. I really admired Logic, despite its learning curve, but then Apple bought it and discontinued the PC version. That left Sonar, which was the easiest to use, the most Windows-oriented, and the cheapest; yay!

For some reason, all my Logic test songs sound different from the ones I started in Sonar. They seem more forceful, electronic, and cold. Maybe it's just a matter of my using different Triton effects templates in my Logic projects, or maybe the Logic workflow pushes a certain type of music; I don't know. I don't necessarily dislike the Logic sound, but very few of the songs I started with it really grabbed me, this song included.

Comotoast

This sleepy number is about as exciting as toast. Get it??? No? Oh. Sorry, if you don't understand Spanish (or even if you do), that probably won't make any sense. Neither does the song. We get glimpses of a groove, but then lose them in a puddle of annoying synths and distorted bass.

Early

Initially, this song was a pure instrumental; I had no plans on adding vocals. When I listened to the mp3, I felt like the song needed something to spice it up. I scribbled down some quick lyrics and re-recorded this vocal version in a couple hours. I didn't like the initial vocal mix, but when I tried to re-record it, I ended up with a bunch of timing problems. This song became a huge headache to finish.

Musically, this song is labored and muffled. The bass is much too loud and the delay-laden groove muddies the mix instead of providing a cool texture. I tried to liven things up with the vocals, but they ended up being depressing (about hangovers). Oh well. There is one really cool part to the song, though: the sudden "wake up" at 4:39.

Lyrics to "Early":

INTRO:
  oh, it's early

VERSE 1:
  oh it's early and i'm hungover
  it's early and i'm hungover
  all right
  what a night

  it's early and i'm rotten
  it's early and i'm sodden
  all right
  kill the light

  it's early and i'm hungover
  it's early; i puked all over
  the floor
  what a bore

  it's early, and i'm surly
  my stomach's squirrelly, it's early
  and i'm gone
  here comes the dawn
  here comes the dawn

  it's early and i'm hungover
  it's early; i puked all over
  the floor
  what a bore

  it's early, and i'm surly
  it's early, it's squirrelly
  and i'm gone
  here comes the dawn
  here comes the dawn

CHORUS 1:
  now i'm happy again
  i'm sitting with my best friend
  the bottle

  yes i'm chatty again
  i'm talking and laughing again
  with my bottle

  because i'm drinking again
  i'm with my only friend
  the bottle (baby bottle)

  i'm dizzy again
  ignoring what's around the bend
  of the bottle (baby bottle)

VERSE 2:
  shut the shades
  turn out the light
  gimme some space

    (I need my puke bucket)
    (I need my puke bucket)
    (I need my puke bucket)
    (my precious puke bucket)

  my head hurts
  mr hyde hurts
  smeagol hurts

  here, trav, drink some water
  it'll make you feel better
  just lay over there and drink some water
  you're gonna feel better, i promise

  just take it easy
  don't exert yourself
  don't do anything
  just sit
  don't create
  don't write
  don't talk
  don't exercise
  don't clean
  don't smile
  don't feel good about yourself
  just sit down on the couch and suffer
  because you drank too much last night
  and you just deserve some quiet
  wrapped up in those sheets
  with the puke bucket, the puke bucket
  i know you want to say "bleep it"
  i can't even say the f work
  that's just me
    (gotta puke, gotta puke)
  i don't have a point
  i always...
  they always sound the same
  they always..
    (gotta puke bucket, puke bucket)
  if i'm gonna spice it up
  if i'm gonna snazz it up
  then it always just ends up...

  [inaudible]

  ouch!
  you opened the door!
    (jesus!)
  you let in the light
  you let in the people
  my head hurts
  why are you don't this?
  why are you don't this?
    (you're doing this)
  why do you hurt me like this?

  why did i do it?
  why did i drink so much?
  why am i on the floor again
    (you're sadistic; you're mean)
  what's this yellow bucket?
  where am i?
  what am i doing here?
    (my best friend is killing me)

CHORUS 2:
  now i'm happy again
  i'm sitting with my best friend
  the bottle  (baby bottle)
    (i don't call this happy again)
    (i call this miserable friend)

  and i'm chattin' again
  i'm speaking in latin again
  with the bottle  (stupid bottle)
    (here i go, addicted again)
    (addicted again, addicted to gin)

  here i go i'm drinking again
  i'm with my only friend
  the bottle  (stupid bottle)
    (there goes control again)

  i'm feeling sick again
  i know what's around the bend
  of the bottle

  i know what's around the bend of the bottle

  [snort!]
  

Logic Test 3

Here's another Logic test, this time focusing on backwards reverb. I like the forcefulness of the drums and bass, but didn't have a "plot" in mind for the song. It ended up sounding pretty empty. It might be cool background music, but there's nothing to hold your attention, nothing to burrow its way into your memory. It has no soul.

Deep Snow

This is one of the few Logic songs that's almost memorable. It's got nice drums and bass, but seems a little too mechanical. It sounds like all I did was copy a pattern over and over and then lay some hasty, heartless solos on top. For a while it's cool, but I think the patterns are too full to be comfortably repeated.

You know; my comments about this song are plagued by the same "disconnect" as the song itself. It's like I'm approaching insight, approaching a connection to the audience, but then I fall short. The Logic songs are all like that. There's something about them that prevented me from being as expressive as I wanted to be. They're fine for background, but disappointing under scrutiny.

Or maybe the problem has nothing to do with Logic. Maybe it's a matter of temperature. When I started the song, there was lots of snow outside (if we can trust the title). Right now, as I type this, my fingers are freezing. Maybe the "cold" music and "stiff" writing are due to the environment. Maybe it's a coincidence that I was using Logic in the winter, when my fingers were cold and it was hard to play fluid solos. That's a possibility!

222

I named this after the date I started it: 2002-02-02. Like the other Logic tests, this is repetitive, industrial-sounding trance. The sound effects are interesting in the beginning, but then I repeat them too much. The drum and bass groove's solid enough, but where are the subtle textures? Where are the wild, enthusiastic solos? Hello? Is anybody home?

Ordered Sonar

I probably started this on the day I ordered Sonar, and intended it to be my last Logic test. It's just as repetitive and "cold" as the other Logic songs, but at least the groove is upbeat. I think I was happy about finally deciding on a sequencer.

No Valentine Jam

This is the first song I started with Sonar (before that, I had been using Cakewalk, Cubase, Logic, and the Triton's sequencer). It's the first in a trio of bluesy jams recorded on Valentine's Day 2002. I decided to break the trio into three parts for the CD.

None of the "Valentine" songs are interesting or "cool" in themselves. They're muddy and rambly, but they seem to have more of a "live" feel, which I like. They sound completely different from the Logic tests. Whenever I hear them, I think "yay, the Tripecac is back!"

No Valentine Jelly

This the second of the three jams recorded on Valentine's Day 2002. It has the same tempo as part 1 and the same key as part 3, so it acts as a sort of bridge between the two. I think I named these songs "No Valentine" because I didn't get any valentines that year. Poor Trav!

No Valentine Honey

This is the third and final of the trilogy I recorded on Valentine's Day 2002. It didn't have a click track, which means I couldn't quantize or loop anything; hency the sloppy, minimalist feel. It was originally over 15 minutes long! I kinda regret whittling it down to under 2 minutes for the CD; it had a neat trancy groove going.

Ditch

I like the peppy, piano-based groove, but dislike the fake-sax melody. My favorite part is the "ditch" in the middle, where everything gets quiet and focuses on a long piano solo. The annoying melody starts up at the end again; I could have faded the song out earlier, but then the title wouldn't make any sense. This is one of the few songs where the title actually described the structure of the song (another is "C Cm F Fm").

Freedom Clock

This noisy guitar and keyboard funk groove is dedicated to Miro, who got married the weekend I finished it! It was originally called "Funk Timing Test"; the new, improved title comes from something Miro said that week, something along the links of his "freedom clock" ticking off its last few seconds. I love the dual guitars on this song! The synthy sounds actually help out for a change, giving the song an "epic" feel.

Relapse

I think I was having some sort of problem with Sonar, and decided to go back to Logic for a bit. Perhaps I was having second thoughts about buying Sonar? Well, Logic may have worked more smoothly that day, but the resulting song was a real clunker. When I first finished this, I called it "mind-numbingly boring mood music". I kinda agree, but at least it's short!

Vibrate

This is a return to the long, piano based jams that I was creating before I started messing around with Logic. I really like it! I think the title comes from a vibration the Triton used to get; I fixed it by wedging bits of paper into cracks in the case.

Logic Reprise

This is an early version of "Logic Test", recorded in mono. I didn't bother to convert it to a Sonar project, and instead simply added fades.