Note To Self | CCTV Lenses For My G3

I was thinking the other day, how I have come full circle almost.. I began my creative pursuits with singing on the radio for the first time when I was a child. And then music drifted off into the background until I was a teen..

What many people around me don’t know is that my second creative pursuit was film making. I made my first film at around 13 or so.. It was a short where the word “Monsters” was spelled out as the intro by laying down plastic day-glow letters, which my brother Gary crawled all over and ruined the shot. Cost me 20 bucks. And you never even got past the opening credits. But I digress…

I have always loved film, and the look of film.. but in truth… its not even the look. It’s the imperfections of ‘bad’ film I love. While most people search for clean lines, in my creative work I love artifacts, scratches, odd behavior.. It gives life to footage.. just like electronic manipulation of sound creates new sounds. I think the artifacts add to the story..

Anyway, this post is really just a note to myself. I was going to bookmark these pages and such, but in the end, I think that my little discoveries are worth sharing, so..  It begins with me watching this video after a terrible migraine…

This video was made by using a CCTV lens, made for a surveillance camera. You can get one of these types, known as CS Mount CCTV lenses, for about 7-20 bucks on the low end, and about 600.00 on the high end (not seen any videos with these types). Deal Extreme has them for under 8 bucks!

What I liked about this footage was the surreal look, the softness. The vignette is sometimes an unwanted thing for most, but I love it. Obviously, the Mojo plugin gave it the retro-dreamy-color look, but you can see the blur on the sides, and the frames look very film-like. So.. I am going to make myself a kit or two using these charming cheapies.. :)

To adapt this type of lens to a Micro thirds camera, you would also need this thing:

EzFoto-C-Mount-Adapter for about 10 bucks

… And what do you know,  there’s a 35mm kit with the adapter for 31.00 .. Not too shabby.

http://www.dinodirect.com/tv-lens-35mm-f1-7-c-mount.html   That one is comparable to SLR Magic Lenses that are going for about the 150-200 range for under 30 bucks.

So for about 50 bucks.. I can have an 8mm, 16mm, and a a 35mm group of ‘special’ lenses. Sounds like a plan.

I have already adapted an old 50 and 28mm SLR lens to my G3, and I do love the results. I ran some tests on Sunday and I must say, the results were pretty good. It takes some getting used to, and the effects are not always controllable, but the fun factor is way high, and the cost has been very low. Will this replace the 5DMKII ?? No, no way. But it is a great way to augment my kit. There’s lots of filming in my future. In that future, I also see a Canon 7D. But I will let that stay as a dream for now. : )

See? Even on digital photos.. the grain adds to their charm.. This was taken in Sau Paulo, Brasil in the metro station.

Anything Box | Volume One

For today, I am going to only list the tracks from this release, which is from Twilight Records (Buenos Aires, Argentina).
Volume One was a pleasure to create because it is a great way for people to know who Abox is, and what phases we’ve been through.. So here’s the track listing with my notes for all 19 songs.. :)

1. Living in Oblivion RM – I don’t think I need to say much about this song, but this version is re-mastered and is a mix that is n bot more pumping. I like calling it the Elektrode Mix.
2. Kiss of Love Unknown remix – this is not only a re-master, but has alternate sounds and sequences that were not released before, and again, if you thought the original mis pumped, this one is dance-floor friendly
3 . World Without Love RM – A nice, re-mastered version of one of my favorite songs
4. The Ravine Video Mix – The re-mastered version that I edited for the b&w video on YT.
People always asked for it.. so there it is
5. Answer me – Pumped up for real..
6. Blue Little Rose – Sounds more heavenly now
7. A Moment’s Shifting – Re-mastered and sounds really good
8. Emily – Re-mastered and sounds really good
9. Doubt – Re-mastered and sounds really good
10. Conscious

- Re-mastered and sounds really good
11. Clean – Re-mastered and sounds really good
12. Welcome to The End – Re-mastered and sounds really good
13. 65 millon miles – Re-mastered and sounds really good
14. Atlantis – Re-mastered and sounds really good
15. Heaven – No one really knows this song, except hard core fans who were with us from the start. This is in fact a rehearsal of it just before we were to go and play it for the first time. So this is history..
16. Destinations – A song that was a demo for Peace. I just felt it was better off for Worth, then it got buried in tours and stuff. Always liked this version, because it is so raw, us just in front of each other and everything is being played as it happens..
17. Ascension – A song from our very first demo, the title track in fact. Gothy and could be a b-side to All These Hours.
18. Pray – If Soul On Fire had actually been released, this was my B-Side for it..
19. Hypocrites 1st Mix – This was the first time I sang this song to tape..

The US version of this album will be on endpop and will be download only, but that date has not been set yet. This version is a digipak with photos and a painting I did just for this version. Cheers!!!

New Albums | Twilight Records | Argentina

http://www.twilight-records.com.ar/twilight-records.htm is the link you can check out and see what the fuss is all about. And of this writing, a US release is also planned for one of those records, which is Volume One. But for now, you can only get these special versions directly from Twilight Records.

Here is thepicture of Volume One that has been posted all over the place as of late for them.. Including FB. so yes, even though I am still on FB Vacation, there is some activity on my part to keep up with things. The albums being released in Argentina are: Hope, Worth, Recovered & Volume One. The cover and back cover for Worth is now my favorite, something we all knew should have been the cover, but for some reason I resisted the idea.. :) Now it gets a facelift. These are all digipaks by the way, and they look truly beautiful…

And while on the subject, I just want to say thank you for all the kin d words I’ve recieved from you all. I am ok, and in truth, there are very personal and important reasons why I’ve chosen to stay away from FB. I don’t hate Facebook, in fact, it was a great experience to connect with fans and family from all over the world, and I will return to this because in many ways, I do feel that I could be a positive influence. At least I think so. I will let you guys decide that.

But don’t worry, I am fine. In fact, being away from it all has allowed my brain to focus more on the task of creating new music, and as soon as these ideas coalesce into something good, believe me, I will be back to share it with all of you. Meanwhile, all is not lost. My blogs exist for me to write down my thoughts, and maybe this will be a better way to keep me grounded?? I don’t really know, but let’s give this a try. It is worth it for me to do make a few changes in my life. Positive changes that help us become better human beings are never a bad thing right??

See you all soon! :D

Claude S.

Live 8 / 9 Workflow Tip

I was sitting there, trying to figure out how to create a better workflow in Ableton Live 8 when by accident I created a situation that will indeed save me hours of work when sitting down to arrange a song, or even do remixes and DJ Sets (this will work in 9 as well).

I had to post this, so that anyone who uses Ableton can either go ‘duh!’ or ”OMG!!!’. But the fact is, it is a an extreme time saver, so worthy of teaching it to the world of Ableton users.

Let’s get right into it, shall we??

1. Create a MIDI Track and choose the VSTi synth or drum machine you love best. I am personally going to do this with multiple plugins, but you can start with just one. once you have it, pick your favorite patch, something you won’t mind always starting off with. This can be your favorite bank for example. Also, feel free to add an Arpeggiator, EQ, Delay, or whatever you may want to have loaded up with this plugin (I recommend you turn them off after loading them in).

2. Create Empty Midi Clips. You do this by double clicking in the clip area. Live defaults to a one bar clip. You can change the length of these clips in the clip properties. In my example below, I created several types, named them, color-coded them, and set them up ready to be recorded.

3. Name the track. As you can see, mine was named Purity, because that’s the plugin I happen to have loaded (I plan on doing this with all of my favorite set-ups). Now to the left of your clips are your folders and favorite presets. Click on any of the Camera Icons and create a folder in it. I named mine ‘Synth Rack 2013′ for example. Now all you do is drag the entire track you made into that folder, and Live will save it. Not just that, it saves it with your bank, effects settings, and the various clips!

Now anytime I work on a new song, I just reach for that ‘Purity’ preset, and my synth, bank and clips are loaded in.. and the best part? If I decide to use a different plugin, that’s ok. I just drag it over the track name and Live will replace it. I can then save it to a new preset.

Nice! :)

– endpop

Image

Clean

Clean

Everyone is fly,
everything is clean,
If you want to see this look inside…
As the ocean flows,
and the night grows cold,
All you see is all you get oh yeah…

You and me together again,
You and me together as friends,
You and me together again oh yeah…

When I feel your kiss,
I hear what I’ve missed,
should you need to feel this kiss me now…
Does it make you smile,
will you stay awhile,
you can have us make it last for hours…
 
You and me together again,
You and me together as friends,
You and me together again oh yeah…

everyone is fly,
everything is clean,
if you want to feel this kiss me now…
You and me together again,
You and me together as friends,
You and me together again oh yeah…

C.

Anything Box | Free 5.2 EP

I’ve done things like this before, of course. A few weeks back I gave away The Diary’s first album, completely Re-mastered.. So it shouldn’t be a surprise that I would do it again. Here it is.. 5.2  And the track listing is this:

01. Living In Oblivion . Elektrode

02. A Moment’s Shifting

02. Carmen . Just One More Day Remix

04. Every Single Day . Unknown Mix

05. Do you Hear Me Anymore

06. All These Hours Undone . Extended

07.  Because . Longer Orchestral Mix

And the link to get it is right here: Anything Box 5.2 EP from endpop.com in case you don’t want to read any further…

But in case that you are staying with me on this post, I just want to tell you a little bit about why I did it, why today of all days and so forth. Well, The reason is two fold. For one thing, I am still working on material for Anything Box’s next release, whether it will be a single or an EP I will not say for now. I am working on Kiss Of Love 2011, and at the same time a cover of a Portishead song, Machine Gun (coming out delicious I might add). It’s a productive time, albeit slow at the start. I’ve been through some heavy stuff, but the world is moving on, and it is my duty to make people smile, even if it kills me in the process. That… That is how I roll these days. So yes, there you are, a free one. Something to keep you excited! What is coming will add to the legacy of what these 7 songs mean to me, and I am very proud to continue with my music and my art.

5.2? Well, 40 years ago to the day my family stepped off an airplane and my life in Argentina ended and my life in the United States began.  And just a year ago on this very day I played with Moenia in my other adoptive country, Peru and fell in love. Being a bit of a sentimentalist, you can see why I chose to give away a few songs today. To celebrate all of it. Free from all my hang ups, I have come to realize that life is good. Everything happens for a reason, and right now… I am feeling quite happy.

Going back to the studio…

 

Animore | EverAfter

Animorè is born! I know that it may come as a bit of a surprise to know that the new single, EverAfter , and video is not actually an Anything Box release. In this case there’s a good reason, and I’ve sent this email out for everyone to hear it from my own heart… This is about making a change, and taking a chance in altering the future. That’s what I’ve set about to do, and I will need all the support I can get from anyone who has ever been affected by the music and art of Anything Box, and The Diary. And now I need you!!! In fact, this feels very much like it felt when I wrote, Living In Oblivion. I knew that I was leaving my hometown for the west coast. Only now the hurdles are higher, the risks greater… love is worth it. As many of you may have guessed, back in May of 2010 I went to Lima, Peru to play a show with Moenia. It was the most incredible week of my life. Why? Because I fell in love with someone there who opened up my heart. We both knew that it was a crazy thing, too. I mean how do we work this? She lives in South America, and I am in southern CA!!! It seemed to me that if we worked for it, that it would happen… and so it began. And it was magic… The song says it all.. . I took three trips there, and as often happens, the months in between got worse. The more we saw each other for that short time, the more it would hurt to leave. We knew we loved each other, so we carried on. But make no mistake…. It’s a difficult thing. Skype, emails, phones… Not enough. Not for me, and not for her. And how long do we keep it up like this? Something had to happen. At first, I was at least happy to see that my slumbering creativity was coming out of a deep sleep. I posted lyrics and songs have been flowing out of me (especially in the last few weeks) from day one… I loved being in Lima… Loved it. And one morning I had a dream vision while really lost in Neverville ( a very real place). I felt such desolation, and in that moment… It all became clear. I have to make dreams happen. I can do this. And only someone as surrealist as me, thevcrazy artist that I am can pull it off. Let me put the truth out there, I said… Let me take these new songs and make them truly new… So here is the truth… She lives in Peru. I live in California. The distance is incredible. There are debts, changes in career. Risks. And the relationship hangs in the balance. Can a few of my songs and my art change our destiny? Only if I make it so. With your help to spread the story, I say…. YES!!!!! Have a great New Year!!! I will keep you posted… :)Claude S. / Animorè
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