25 TUNES OF XMAS 2015

I did it last year and I figure why not again. From December 1 - 25th, I'm composing a new piece of music every day and recording a rough demo to post here.  This creative challenge is not only to write new music, but to push myself to expand the styles & range of music I create. Enjoy!


DEC 25 - OREST AND LAURA'S Bb

I wrote this tune for my parents. They are, and always have been, my biggest supporters and for everything that the do and continue to do I am forever grateful. The tune is a nice little reel in Bb, and is best danced to in the kitchen. Merry Christmas.

quote of the day

“Music is a moral law. It gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, a charm to sadness, gaiety and life to everything. It is the essence of order, and leads to all that is good, just, and beautiful, of which it is the invisible, but nevertheless dazzling, passionate, and eternal form.”
― Unknown

DEC 24 - THE SISTERS REEL

I wrote this for my two older sisters, Kimberly and Kanndece. They are both great fiddle players and have influenced my playing ever since I started when I was 4 years old. Playing music with them (along with my dad on accordion) are some of my favorite memories growing up and every time that we get to play together now is special to me. 

quote of the day

“After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.”
― Aldous Huxley, Music at Night and Other Essays

DEC 23 - MORSE

I wrote this little melody sitting in front of our front window reflecting on the year that has passed.

quote of the day

“I like beautiful melodies telling me terrible things.”
― Tom Waits

DEC 22 - FFIR

A wee little riff.

quote of the day

“It is always fatal to have music or poetry interrupted.”
― George Eliot, Middlemarch

DEC 21 - LITTLE MOUSE

This little melody was inspired by the nickname my mom gives to almost anyone and everyone who goes into the deep freeze to grab some of her baking treats. Most often scuffles for me.

quote of the day

“Life seems to go on without effort when I am filled with music.”
― George Eliot, The Mill on the Floss

DEC 20 - BIXIE'S JIG

This was written for the talented, funny, and overall fantastic person Darla Biccum. She is a great great friend and I am proud to call her my friend.

quote of the day

“Love is friendship set to music.”
― Jackson Pollock

DEC 19 - KNIFE CIRCLE

Inspired by a little idea for a round and a chop groove. Knives chop, and circles are round.

quote of the day

“Music produces a kind of pleasure which human nature cannot do without.”
― Confucius, The Book of Rites

DEC 18 - BY THE POOL

Inspired by that feeling of sitting by the pool on a hot summer day, or a hot vacation day.

quote of the day

“Play it fuckin' loud!”
― Bob Dylan

DEC 17 - HAVANA BY DAY

On a recent trip to Cuba, we had one night in Havana and I was very much struck by this very unique city. A city that looks much different in the daylight than it does under the glow of the moon. This music is inspired by that trip.

quote of the day

My kids are starting to notice I'm a little different from the other dads. "Why don't you have a straight job like everyone else?" they asked me the other day.

I told them this story:
In the forest, there was a crooked tree and a straight tree. Every day, the straight tree would say to the crooked tree, "Look at me...I'm tall, and I'm straight, and I'm handsome. Look at you...you're all crooked and bent over. No one wants to look at you." And they grew up in that forest together. And then one day the loggers came, and they saw the crooked tree and the straight tree, and they said, "Just cut the straight trees and leave the rest." So the loggers turned all the straight trees into lumber and toothpicks and paper. And the crooked tree is still there, growing stronger and stranger every day.”
― Tom Waits


DEC 16 - COUNTERFATE

Is there such a thing as counterfate? Is it luck, chance, or otherwise. The idea behind this tune is how sometimes it is luck that a melody gets strung together.

quote of the day

“Music acts like a magic key, to which the most tightly closed heart opens.”
― Maria Augusta von Trapp

DEC 15 - ELECTRIC HEART

Inspired by a new instrument that I bought my wife for her birthday, I relate this little melody to that feeling you get when you have a new instrument in your hands and you cannot make sound the way you hear it.........yet.

quote of the day

“Music makes one feel so romantic - at least it always gets on one's nerves - which is the same thing nowadays.”
― Oscar Wilde

DEC 14 - ROAD TRIP

This song is inspired by surprise adventure - a decision that snowballs into an adventure that starts off nervously, finishes without a hitch, and then is unforgettable.

quote of the day

“If being an egomaniac means I believe in what I do and in my art or music, then in that respect you can call me that... I believe in what I do, and I'll say it.”
― John Lennon

DEC 13 - I DON'T KNOW

This is a song I wrote based around singing and backing myself up with the fiddle. This is the instrumental version.

quote of the day

“Music is to the soul what words are to the mind.”
― Modest Mouse, Modest Mouse - Good News for People Who Love Bad News 

DEC 12 - THE PENDULUM

A swing-ish style tune was the core of the idea, and this is what came out. That feeling of being on a swing set growing up and having a couple moments where your heart suddenly has wings and is up in your chest when you are at the height of the pendulum. 

quote of the day

“Everything in the universe has a rhythm, everything dances. ”
― Maya Angelou

DEC 11 - SHANNON'S SONG

A song written for a friend, Shannon. Lyrics are 60% done. This is the instrumental version.

quote of the day

“The only truth is music.”
― Jack Kerouac

DEC 10 - FLOWERS RIP

What does a flower feel when it is finally fully open and in bloom?  A little soundtrack of what it might be.

quote of the day

“If I were not a physicist, I would probably be a musician. I often think in music. I live my daydreams in music. I see my life in terms of music.”
― Albert Einstein

DEC 9 - STEP OF LEAVES

That sound of stepping on crispy leaves in the fall and the memories of growing up playing in the them. The feeling of leaves all around you.

quote of the day

“Music was my refuge. I could crawl into the space between the notes and curl my back to loneliness.”
― Maya Angelou

DEC 8 - IDEAS OF PROGRESSION

A simple little progression. A simple little melody.

quote of the day

“And, in the end
The love you take
is equal to the love you make.”
― Paul McCartney, The Beatles Illustrated Lyrics 

DEC 7 - A WALTZ FOR AMY

A tune for my wife. Not a waltz but old timey with some color.

quote of the day

“And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music.”
― Friedrich Nietzsche

DEC 6 - GOVAN

Govan is the town that I spent one weekend at every summer for the better part of 20 years. It was the provincial fiddle contest and I met more musical friends there than any other annual event. This tune is for the Govan Fiddlefest.

quote of the day

“Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent”
― Victor Hugo

DEC 5 - THREE SNEAKS

This tune was written for the one and only Daniel Koulack and the nickname that we gave him on tour in the spring - Sneaks. He is an amazing musician and amazing person.

DOWNLOAD SHEET MUSIC FOR THREE SNEAKS

quote of the day

“One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain.”
― Bob Marley

DEC 4 - OPPOSITES ATTRACT

This music came about from two separate ideas coming together that originally had very different ideas behind them. I believe that sometimes two things very different sometimes belong together.

DOWNLOAD SHEET MUSIC FOR OPPOSITES ATTRACT

quote of the day

“Without music, life would be a mistake.”
- Friedrich Nietzsche, Twilight of the Idols

DEC 3 - MAKING SPACE

A piece of music based around the idea that less can be more. Maybe there shouldn't be more notes. Maybe we don't need more things.

DOWNLOAD SHEET MUSIC FOR MAKING SPACE

quote of the day

"It's easy to get sidetracked with technology, and that is the danger, but ultimately you have to see what works with the music and what doesn't. In a lot of cases, less is more. In most cases, less is more."
- Herbie Hancock


DEC 2 - UNEASY

A tune for that feeling that may come often for some, and rarely for others - uneasiness. This feeling cloud made a brief appearance for me today and was the overall emotion I felt about how busy life can be some times.

DOWNLOAD SHEET MUSIC FOR UNEASY

quote of the day

“Chaos in the world brings uneasiness, but it also allows the opportunity for creativity and growth.”
- Tom Barrett

DEC 1 -  KITCHEN 1313

The inspiration behind this tune is that feeling of going home. Specifically that feeling of sitting in the kitchen that you grew up in with no one else around, and reflecting on the memories that happen in your home kitchen.

DOWNLOAD SHEET MUSIC FOR KITCHEN 1313

quote of the day

“A man travels the world over in search of what he needs and returns home to find it.”
- George Moore, The Brook Kerith