New Belgium Ranger IPA

I just discovered it’s American Craft Beer Week! So to celebrate (well it’s a good excuse anyway), I’ve been drinking some New Belgium – more specifically the Ranger IPA. Apparently that makes me a beer ranger. Anyway, what I like about this beer is how it combines the citrus / floral / fruity flavors of three different hops with the dark caramel of malts. The Ranger IPA is definitely my favorite of all the New Belgium beers, and I highly recommend...

Inspirations: Nightmares on Wax

The music of Nightmares on Wax is a big influence for me, and “Date with Destiny” is probably my favorite N.O.W. song. It’s great summer music, and the video illustrates that perfectly. And if you like chillout music, “Les Nuits” can’t be beat. Classic instrumental hip hop and downtempo...

The Green Jacket

This post is for aspiring music producers.  I can’t say I’m experienced enough to give a lot of advice, but I have learned a couple things.  One of them is about mastering. A couple of months ago I had the privilege of hearing Atlanta-based music producer Billy Hume talk about the ins and outs of  mixing and producing.  When asked about mastering, he said that it was (and I’m paraphrasing) a special kind of science (or magic or wizardry) that was best left to those who only do mastering.  That is, he focuses on his art – mixing and producing music – and leaves the art of mastering up to someone else. I’m sure he was being humble (just check out his resume), but it’s an interesting point.  Should you master your own music or get someone else to do it? Well Billy is more knowledgeable than I am so I trust his judgement.  But I’m a fan of getting mastering help for a couple other reasons: First, I prefer to do what I love and what I like to think I do well, which is writing and recording music.  After I mix everything down, I rely on experts to handle the mastering.  While Billy was being funny, he’s right.  It really is different from anything else you do when recording.  I don’t want to spend a lot of time learning about the complexities of mastering when I could use that time to write more songs. Second, if you’re a solo musician like me, you’d benefit from another set of ears hearing your music, and contributing some sonic support. ...

Interview with Bluey

A while back I got to email with Bluey of Incognito about musical genres, and of course I was ecstatic about it.  Well the group has just put out a new record called Surreal (which is amazing by the way), and Bluey took time to tell me about it.  Part one of that interview is online now at Leisure...

Founders All Day IPA

I write about music all the time, so I thought it might be a nice change of pace to talk about one of my other passions: beer.  While I try to take all things in moderation, I do consider myself a connoisseur of IPAs, pilsners, stouts, and other brews.  My love for all things ale might stem from my proximity to the beer capital of the USA, or maybe I just have a taste for the tang of hops.  Either way, I like beer so it seems appropriate to share some suggestions.  Maybe you’ll discover one you like too. One of my current favorites is Founders Brewing Co.’s All Day IPA. I love hops.  I don’t know why, but the hoppier, the better. The flavor is phenomenal, and that’s why I like beer: the taste. And while I enjoy inebriation as much as the next guy, I don’t drink to get drunk.  In fact, I prefer the opposite.  If I don’t get lit right way, then I can enjoy the beer longer, and appreciate all the complexities more. That’s why Founders All Day IPA might be the perfect beer.  It has the hoppyness and aroma of an IPA, but an alcohol level of 4.7%, which makes it extra drinkable, hence the name: you can drink it all day. Now I’m not saying you should drink all day, and I’m not admitting to doing that myself.  But hypothetically, if we were to imbibe for an entire afternoon – and it would be our little secret – this would be my beer of choice. Founders says the All Day IPA “keeps...
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