25 TUNES OF XMAS 2016

For the third year in a row, I'm composing a new piece of music every day for the first 25 days of December and recording a rough demo to post here - kind of like a new music advent calendar.  This creative challenge is not only to write new music, but to push myself to expand the styles & range of music I create. Enjoy!

#25tunes #karrnnel


DECEMBER 25 - FEARING FORWARD

This tune was inspired by the reflection and forecast time of year the holidays bring. Fear is a natural feeling, and should be met with your indivudual counteractive feeling to maintain your life balance.

The future rewards those who press on. I don’t have time to feel sorry for myself. I don’t have time to complain. I’m going to press on.
— Barack Obama

DECEMBER 24 - BOOK OF NOTES

This is a little melody inspired by that feeling of getting ready for the holidays.

Simplicity is the final achievement. After one has played a vast quantity of notes and more notes, it is simplicity that emerges as the crowning reward of art.
— Frederic Chopin

DECEMBER 23 - ROCK JEALOUSY

Inspired by the gap in perception between guitar players and fiddle players.

One of my biggest thrills for me still is sitting down with a guitar or a piano and just out of nowhere trying to make a song happen.
— Paul McCartney

DECEMBER 22 - THAT Bb GROOVE

This is a little groove inspired by the search for good ones. This one just happens to be in Bb.

You can always tell when the groove is working or not.
— Prince

DECEMBER 21 - EDGAR & CECILE'S

This was written for my in-laws - Edgar and Cecile Matysio.

I developed in my head that I’m never any better than my last concert or the last time I played, so it’s like an audition each time. You get nervous just before going onstage. I still have that, but I think it’s more like concern. You’re concerned about the people - like meeting your in-laws for the first time.
— B. B. King

DECEMBER 20 - SARAH & JOHN'S

This was written for my wife's sister and brother - Sarah and John Matysio.

If you want to do really important things in life and big things in life, you can’t do anything by yourself. And your best teams are your friends and your siblings.
— Deepak Chopra

DECEMBER 19 - SNOW GAME

Inspired by a snowy winter day in Regina. The cities that have an abundance of snow every year deal with snow in a playful way, compared to those typical snowy-less cities.

The Eskimos had fifty-two names for snow because it was important to them: there ought to be as many for love.
— Margaret Atwood

DECEMBER 18 - ANXIETY

A simple little melody based around the feeling of anxiety. This will turn into a larger composition over the coming months.

Anxiety is the hand maiden of creativity.
— T. S. Eliot

DECEMBER 17 - SITTING HERE

This little melody is the start of another song idea based around playing and singing at the same time. The idea for the song is based around being present of where you are.

Life gives you plenty of time to do whatever you want to do if you stay in the present moment.
— Deepak Chopra

DECEMBER 16 - MEET THE KILMISTERS

When one of your best pals asks you to write him a tune, you do it. So this is for Brennan Kilmister and his family.

A friend is someone who gives you total freedom to be yourself.
— Jim Morrison

DECEMBER 15 - LITTLE OF YOU

This start of a melody / song was inspired by the phrase a little of you, completely. Lyrics will be coming to this song soon.

Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.
— Lao Tzu

DECEMBER 14 - AT THE 6

This tune was inspired by the feeling of being home, and the changing feeling of home takes on at different times in your life.

At home I am a nice guy: but I don’t want the world to know. Humble people, I’ve found, don’t get very far.
— Muhammad Ali

DECEMBER 13 - TONE JOURNEY

I have been spending more and more time trying to find a tone that I am happy with for my electric rig. This is a little melody after messing around with another amp I borrowed from a friend.

I believe every guitar player inherently has something unique about their playing. They just have to identify what makes them different and develop it.
— Jimmy Page

DECEMBER 12 - ONE STEP AT A TIME

This was inspired by that overwhelming feeling of chaos when the amount of things to get done is much much greater than the hours available.

It is better to take many small steps in the right direction than to make a great leap forward only to stumble backward.
— Old Chinese Proverb

DECEMBER 11 - THE MIRROR'S REFLECTION

I often practice in front of a mirror to work on my bow hand, and this little progression came out of a little practice session.

Music is the movement of sound to reach the soul for the education of its virtue.
— Plato

DECEMBER 10 - ON YOUR OWN

I was inspired to write this after a conversation with the owner of a bed a breakfast I recently stayed at in Manitoba. His wife had just lost her battle with cancer and this little phase stuck out to me. This is only the start of the song for now.

Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.
— Buddha

DECEMBER 9 - COPPER AND AMPS

A little progression / melody after messing around with a couple of amps I borrowed from a friend. Not your typical fiddle tune.

I think I could walk into any music shop anywhere and with a guitar off the rack, a couple of basic pedals and an amp I could sound just like me. There’s no devices, customized or otherwise, that give me my sound.
— David Gilmour

DECEMBER 8 - BIRDIE ON THE SILL

I woke up this morning and sat at my desk to write today's tune, and the little bird that often sits on my window sill was spending a lot of time there today. So I wrote a tune with this bird as the inspiration.

Be like the bird who, pausing in her flight awhile on boughs too slight, feels them give way beneath her, and yet sings, knowing she hath wings.
— Victor Hugo

DECEMBER 7 - SCOTTISH VISITOR

I wanted to write a tune in the key of C#, and what came out sounds a bit like a Scottish tune. Definitely not a key/tune that you will here at a trad jam, but it has that feel to me!

Thanks to photography, some memories overstay their welcome.
— Mokokoma Mokhonoana

DECEMBER 6 - HOUSEBROKEN HEDGEHOG

My band mate in The Fretless, Ben Plotnick, was staying at my house this morning and after a previous conversation about how all the Bens that I know are musical beasts and somehow all resemble a hedgehog (at least a little), the name housebroken hedgehog was born. So we sat down and wrote this tune together. Specifically, this tune goes out to Ben Knorr.

The fox has many tricks. The hedgehog has but one. But that is the best of all.
— Ralph Waldo Emerson

DECEMBER 5 - CONTINUOUS JOURNEY

After a weekend of great music and meeting a whole lot of great people from around the world at both the Canadian Folk Music Awards and Folk Music Canada's Folk North, this morning was a time of reflection for my musical path. That was the inspiration behind this little melody today. Soothing at times, with unexpected twists popping up, and times of stillness.

If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.
— John Quincy Adams

DECEMBER 4 - AVENUE E

I found myself searching for a melodic starting point in writing today's tune, and it oddly had a reasonable parallel with driving through a neighborhood to get to where you are going. I had to find the key avenue of my tune destination.

What is a master but a master student? And if that’s true, then there’s a responsibility on you to keep getting better and to explore avenues of your profession.
— Neil Peart

DECEMBER 3 - NEARLY EVERYTHING

After watching recently The Theory of Everything, the idea that a single equation could explain everything is something that didn't sit well with me. This tune was inspired by that little thought and curiosity - is this tune solvable with this theoretical equation?

Quiet people have the loudest minds.
— Stephen Hawking

DECEMBER 2 - THE REDUCTION

The idea of boiling down a liquid or sauce while cooking was the idea for this tune. Similar ideas and themes slightly changed make up the melodies of the A and B section for this tune.

People should be conscious of the large contribution made by anything that gets people together easily in the reduction of loneliness and emotional well-being.
— Daniel Kahneman

DECEMBER 1 - AN OLD BEGINNING

Inspired by that feeling of beginning an intensive project again. After all the lessons learned and energy spent with the previous experiences, it all boils down to starting the project and working at it until it is done.

If you want something new, you have to stop doing something old
— Peter F. Drucker