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Last Song On Vaudeville (early mix) w/ bbarner

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Since Bill Barner posted a fabulous fusion track of his D.C. group Extremities this morning, FIGS, I wanted to add to his portfolio: and early mix of a song that I hope will be the final track on my organ-driven jazz ensemble recording, Rain Bather, due out later this year (if everything goes right). I play organ, electric piano and synths on this track, Bill plays all tenor saxes and clarinets. It's kind of a progressive New Orleans tin pan alley post-vaudeville acid jazz industrial noise fusion piece, or, as peacepiano says, "Avant Vaudeville."

I know the middle tenor sax solo is a bit hot, which has been fixed in later mixes. But the final mix fades into a 33 rpm rhythmic record scratch, as a concept ending to the CD, and fades out some of Bill's cool clarinet work at the end. I wanted to share this version on MJ with people cuz it has more Bill in it, and the ending clarinet improvisation he did is my favorite element.

I wrote all the melody lines and sent Bill a score from which he played all the separate reed parts. I also recorded MIDI reeds as a model, providing him dummy tracks, giving Bill the green light to deviate whenever he wanted. He played along to my complete mix (I also gave him a version with no MIDI reeds), recorded his solo'd instruments in separate mono tracks, and sent them back to me. I've mixed down several versions and added a bit more organ in a second pass. Then I added the 33 rpm scratches as a a crossfade to give the recording a post-vaudeville time travel concept feel, but will save that for the CD.

I would like to know you think this sound works with the other songs on the album. I have a hip dip influenced piece that sounds a but like Nehru Jacket that will come before it (that isn't ready to share) and I hope creates a good transition. Let me know if you think its a phone final track.

Also, I had trouble mixing in the tracks Bill sent because they had such a roomy sound to them. Let me know if they sound organic and integrated into the whole.

Other collabs with BBarner:
Secret of Life
Let Me Play (w/ McBoy too)

RAIN BATHER draft mixes on MJ:
I Wanna Fly
Lightning Strikes
Caught In The Current (feat. Bill Barner/Komdrade K)
Finding No Path
Seven Buttons On A Nehru Jacket
Acid Hopping (extended version)
Last Song On Vaudeville (feat. Bill Barner)

If you would like to purchase a copy of the CD, which is pressed on a cool disc that looks like a mini-LP, feel free to contact me, or see:
Rain Bather on CDBbay
Rain Bather on iTunes
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Song Stats
Hits: 5347
Comments: 28
Fans: 15
Plays: 185
Downloads: 135
Votes: 8
Uploaded: Jul 30, 2008 - 08:55:54 AM
Last Updated: Jan 12, 2010 - 01:49:52 PM Last Played: Jul 05, 2019 - 03:10:38 AM
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Bubowski said 4071 days ago (July 30th, 2008)
Like the Playing
Your comments re: the signal on the woodwind part is spot on. They're pretty tasty but a little hot. I'm really not too sure about the prominance of the lo-fi percussion track. I think the lo-fi is a cool idea but it seems to overpower the rest of the mix.

It seems like to whole mix is a bit to "up front" to my ears, without a balance of foreground and background sounds. You've got a lot of cool elements floating around but it's hard to differentiate them in the mix. I do like the blend of the lo-fi perc and the grungie B3, but to my ears the perc needs to be backed off some in the mix and let the melody and harmony come out a bit.

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TobinMueller said 4071 days ago (July 30th, 2008)
Drowned by the future
Conceptually, getting drowned by the future, oone last gasp of Vaudeville, was what I was going for. Don't want it to become oppressive, tho. Actually, in subsequent mixes I tamed the low-fi stuff with EQing out some mids, as opposed to simply turning it down, cuz I missed those annoying highs when they got too soft. SInce there is actually no bass player, no bass line, I also wanted to keep the lows going strong.
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KellyMarkSmith said 4071 days ago (July 30th, 2008)
Love it!!!
It's like a busy reciepe.... A little of this and that with a splash of that, and dunk it in a 5th of gin...

Freakin Sweet!!!
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bbarner said 4071 days ago (July 30th, 2008)
Some thoughts and notes
Hey, Last Song On Vaudeville is really exciting. I can hear what you mean by "roomy" and wonder if in future I should try to change the pattern of my mic to pick up less room and maybe try to change the accoustic properties of the room. Also, I have never been happy with the tenor sound I get on my recordings. I don't think I sound so tubby live and wonder if I would get better results moving away from the mic. I rehearsed the difficult clarinet parts for a while and tried to get it right by recording a couple of bars at a time, but eventually gave up and did an improvised clarinet part following the general shape of your written melody. (I just don't have the reading chops.) As to whether it fits--it seems right now you have a couple of main-stream jazz organ plus horns tunes, a ECM-ish/new agey piece, and two electronic/MMW/industrial pieces. If you were going to have all music recorded by your ensemble except this piece, I'd say it might be out of place. Anyway, I hope you can use it. I really dig the Neru jacket, by the way. It's a toe tapper and the flute is fine.

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TobinMueller said 4071 days ago (July 30th, 2008)
More Barner!
I am also including a redo of another collab of ours, Secret of Life. But I'm not ready to share it yet.

Hope you can post more Extremities. I love the sound.

Thanks for all your work. Your clarinet stuff is so cool. Not enough clarinet in jazz today.
Check out my latest song called Momentary Undertow
kassia said 4071 days ago (July 30th, 2008)
Last Song
Conceptually this is brilliantly creative. It's got an interesting and pleasing combination of instruments and sounds. Love the composition and jazziness. I agree with Graham - I think the lo-fi is a VERY cool idea and I love it as the opening feel, but as the piece progresses I felt like it got to be too much and started distracting me from the cool stuff going on in the woodwinds and organ. Great movement throughout the piece. Really keeps my toe tapping. It's a VERY cool tune, Tobin. I like it a lot.
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peacepiano said 4071 days ago (July 30th, 2008)
Avant Vaudeville
I can hear the reverberations of vaudeville, but the modern electric jazz fusion noises dominate. The woodwind parts do stand apart some, especially at the end. Bill is a great player, so this just helps to highlight his playing in this context :)

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Feter said 4071 days ago (July 30th, 2008)
Last Song On Vaudeville
this is terrific ..the structure of the keys down
the reeds is just genious ..I cant believe this is
done seperatedly on a studio ..this is so alive ..
its like jammin session ..fabulous ..my frist point
is a miss the dog house bass ..you applied the sync
bass kinda like ..certainly awonderful piece of work
to enjoy ...thnx alot for sharin this gem !!!!
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sloparts said 4071 days ago (July 30th, 2008)
The playing on this is awesome, but
The LoFi noise takes away from it so much for me personally that it kills then rest of the most excellent musicianship going on. I would really love to here a clean version of this in the Jazz tradition without all the noises, but then it wouldn't be the same piece at all, would it?

Let me say this about what you have here. This has the potential to be some really outstanding Jazz work, with a live jammin' kind of feel to it. But as it is, there's just too much noise in it.

Keep in mind when reading this that the guy who typed in has two things that affect his listening ability and attitude. One is my substantial hearing loss, and the other is I'm used to clean mixes where there is no distortion in it. Both those things will affect what I perceive when listening.

In other words, ignore the crotchety old fool on this side of the keyboard.

Be well and be cool my friend,

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michael2 said 4071 days ago (July 30th, 2008)
this is sick. i love the distorted drums and those horns are blowing my mind. I've read the comments below, and my ears have no problem at all with your "lo-fi" approach. actually makes it sound more interesting and contemporary to me. It's not straight jazz, so why try and push it in that direction? only thing i noticed is that the sax solo halfway through is a little loud, but you mentioned that you are already on that. really incredible piece of music.
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Jim Bouchard said 4070 days ago (July 30th, 2008)
interesting, but I'm in the camp that isn't totally in love with the bitshifted lo-fi sound. I have a problem with my new Apogee Duet which has a tendency to produce this sort of destroyed sound in error. I can fix it by changing my sample rate to 48kHz but it's a hassle. This made me open up my Audio MIDI Utility to check if that was the problem. I could get the concept, but it didn't sound right to me. Like it took over the song. Perhaps if it was just in sections it would work better for me. Or if it was a bit more glitchy like it was an instrument rather than an effect laid over a track.
But I don't know, it's a really super track, and maybe I'm just a bit too stodgy. Great to hear BBarner again, I just love his stuff!
Check out my latest song called Big Yawn (Apogee One mic demo)
Norman Goodman said 4069 days ago (July 31st, 2008)
Once the lines kicked in I became so transfixed by the exceptional playing that i lost focus on the lofi part (did dominate the intro)
Awesome phrasing and terrific performances....very cool concept....really enjoyed the listen....quite adventureous(sp).....now I am off to my spelling lessons.........
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said 4069 days ago (August 1st, 2008)
Your musicianship never ceases to amaze me Tobin. I personally like all the different elements. It sounds very unique. I really like the mix, but to my ears, it seems that there is a few elements with the loops or FX (drums and "blips") being in the same frequencies and it's making it a little difficult to distinguish them when other elements are in play. Maybe an alternate panning mix would break them up a bit. For example, Left on one beat and right on the next beat and so forth, you know what I'm saying. But thats it. Other than that "little" thing. This is just amazing. You really inspire me when I listen to your songs.

Thanks for sharing this. I really enjoyed the listen.

Keep up the superb work.


said 4067 days ago (August 3rd, 2008)
Sorry Tobin.
I meant to say that re-mixing the FX effects or "blips", NOT the drums. A better way to describe it is that it will ping-pong during the mix. The first time it comes in on its left, the second on its right and so forth. Sorry for the confusion. Proofreading is not one of my greatest skills, as I'm sure you are aware of.

Anyhow, simply an amazing piece like I said before.
I enjoyed it a lot.

Take care,

guygrooves said 4068 days ago (August 1st, 2008)
Really good fusion
Conceptually this is brilliant. I hear what some of the others have commented on and agree to some extent. I also hear what you are trying to do with this piece, and know you will have it tweaked in any subsequent mixes. I wouldn't have really noticed the roominess of the tracks Bill sent you, had you not mentioned them. They really don't stand out to my ear, they seem to fit rather well, so what you are doing to them is working. You might want to go a touch further though.
On Lightning Strikes I preferred version 2. I really am enjoying listening to this album thus far. I like Caught In The Current, although it seems like it doesn't fit with the theme of the album, to my ignorant ears anyway. Seven Buttons On A Nehru Jacket is my favorite (very COOL) and I will buy this album when it's released. I enjoyed the listen Tobin and thanks for giving these wonderful songs to us.
In answer to whether this piece creates a good transition, I say YES and am looking forward to hearing the final version of this and the album as a whole.
From the perspective of someone who listens to Jazz and knows very little about it, I have to say this sounds like a winner Tobin, and I really like how it fills my apartment up when I'm playing the songs I have already downloaded from it. Please let us know when it is available for purchase.
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mulletsrock said 4068 days ago (August 2nd, 2008)
I dig how the lo-fi sounds remind me of someone playing the bones, or spoons, further reminding me of Vaudeville. Nice updating concept that appeals to the younger crowd. And you are right, never enough clarinet in jazz.
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buckhorn said 4067 days ago (August 3rd, 2008)
I like the industrial edge to this. New territory is found by taking risk and I find that here. It's something else and something more than an average super virtuous Jazz jam. I like.
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cchaplin said 4067 days ago (August 3rd, 2008)
Smashing !
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mowguy3 said 4067 days ago (August 3rd, 2008)
Just getting all the layers and textures to blend blows me away. Great stuff!!
Thanks and be well, Russ
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E-Frame Wrecker said 4067 days ago (August 3rd, 2008)
Interesting piece
I love that term "roomy". All my stuff has that sound unfortunately. Very sophisticated and I think the mix you came up with is quite good. Very unique, good stuff.
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HenriROGERsoloandbands said 4067 days ago (August 3rd, 2008)
Industrial jazz

I had to listen to this several times .
The more I did the more I liked it .
So many events arriving in a cool way .
The main thing for me is how the winds are flying over the "factory" .
The organ is pushing the whole thing with plenty of good riffs .

paul f. page said 4067 days ago (August 3rd, 2008)
I am...
...totally unqualified to comment critically on this piece, Tobin. But there's so much going on that one can't miss the care you've already taken with this number. I don't know how you think of all these things going on at the same time. It is truly amazing. It would be fun to do a live jam with this, however. I could get into that!!! (Organ is awesome about 2.5%u20143 in. I love the slam-slam-slam. ... I think maybe you are creating a new category of music altogether. Bravo.
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egobandit said 4066 days ago (August 3rd, 2008)
LOve the tenor sax that was fun enjoyed!!!!!!!
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jiguma said 4066 days ago (August 4th, 2008)
I think I'd love this without that lo-fi stuff going on. I actually stopped and re-loaded the track twice because I thought I was getting a glitchy signal.

I'd love to hear this without the underlying stuff happening, but as it is I find it really hard on the ears - like Jim, maybe I'm just getting a bit stodgy too.

Great sax and organ though.

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guitapick said 4066 days ago (August 4th, 2008)
...on low quality headphones, but I didn't notice the difference in room sound first time 'round (hadn't read your description, yet). Once I DID read it, though, I noticed it a bit. But not to the point of distraction, for my taste...but not listening with nice system.

Cool piece. I love the intro and fade out...and all that other stuff in between...

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thoddi said 4047 days ago (August 23rd, 2008)
I appreciate the contrast from the lo-fi fx stuff to the smoother woodwinds. It creates a balance and a more hip feeling than this would have if you had one without the other.

I'm usually not a big fan of clarinets and uptone jazz, but in here I feel it works because of the mentioned contrasts.

The organ (instrument) stuff you do is very cool. You know I'm a fan of the cool ways you know around those keys:)
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ramonaji said 3910 days ago (January 7th, 2009)
I love this. LOVE IT!
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michaeljayklein said 3500 days ago (February 20th, 2010)
I really like this
Very creative and entertaining piece of work--it all works itself out beautifully and a joy to listen to. Keep that bar raised! Michael
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CIASM_ZENABI_ said 3294 days ago (September 15th, 2010)
last song
very creative stuff with what sounds like an enormous amount of attention to detail. wierdly disjointed in a way that holds together brilliantly. such a lot going on. almost sloppy in a fantastically tight way.(know what i mean?) the overall feel is quite addictive - thats a talent in itself! pretty awesome stuff. enjoyed it with intensity. cheers
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Name: Tobin Mueller
Location: Rowayton CT USA
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I am a professional musician, composer, playwright and director. I've led a charmed life. I'm married to fellow MJer Suzanne and MJer Twonicus is my son, who currently sings and writes for rock bands in the NYC, D.C. and Cleveland areas. My second s... [see more]

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