November 21, 2014


November 21, 2014


Newest Member [UPDATED]

November 18, 2014


Introducing the newest member of the Random Gadget Family. This is a Sony PCM-M10, a great little recorder. I’ve spent the last few days doing a lot of recording with it: archiving old tapes, field recording outside and in, and using it for an audio journal. I haven’t tried it on a live band yet, but that’ll happen at least by the time LaunchPad Swarms here again, and I’ll likely be using it  to record podcasts when I get into doing them again. My older digital recorder, a Tascam DR-07, is still hanging in there, but its tripod mount is broken, and it occasionally has issues with knowing whether it’s on AC power or battery. I’m still using it regularly, but I wanted the Sony for tripod recording and just because it’s more pro and basically cooler!

11/19 UPDATE: The battery life on this thing is over the top! I’m using NiMH rechargeables, and last night I was field recording in the back yard (train horns! sirens! people partying in the the “brewery district”! etc!), and the low battery signal started flashing (these were batts I’d already been using off and on for three days). I recorded another hour out there, and then left it recording in the living room after we went to bed. It recorded SIX more hours (clock ticking! furnace blowing!) with the low batt warning flashing before shutting down! It’s pretty unbelieveable. Battery life has always been a big problem for field recorders in my experience. I’ve never gotten more than a couple hours TOTAL on one battery charge with my previous machines–cassette, minidisc, flash, etc. I haven’t even tried this new unit with alkaline batteries. If rechargeables are this long-lived, I expect alky batts to last a week! Talk “sipping” power. I love it.

November 11, 2014


I look pretty good as a reptile overlord

November 4, 2014

Made it past Halloween. I had fun startling kids at the door with borrowed lizard glasses. I think I look pretty good as a reptile overlord, akchully. We had Swarm on Sunday. LaunchPad played well together, and Mrs. Random fed us cornish game hens and other fantastic things. It was Orbital Dave’s birthday swarm and we had chocolate cloud cake to help celebrate that. I’ve altered my setup a little. Using thin gaffer-type tape to secure a Mini-KP to the top of my Yamaha keyboard. Turns the keyboard into something way cooler! Also added a Kaossilator-2 to the mix, joining my KO-1 + Mini-KP. At least temporarily ditching the turntable + 4-second delay that’s been a fixture in my LaunchPad repertoire for several years. Thinking about having both bass and regular electric guitars, but this time just the regular.

THE GIANTS WON THE WORLD SERIES. And I’m feeling like a champ. I wonder what will happen with Pablo? And starting pitching. Definitely keeping my ears open during the early hot stove league gossip. I’m going through a bit of baseball withdrawal, but I have Digital Diamond Baseball to help me out. I revived my 2013 Giants season. Just hit September and Angel Pagan is back from the injury that took him out in late May. AND we’re leading the West, 6 games ahead of the Dodgers. Much better than the real Giants were doing at that point during the real 2013 season.

Got my teeth cleaned yesterday. I really don’t mind her digging under the gums and breaking off pieces of tartar (calculus/plaque), but God I HATE the polishing part. It’s getting worse as I get older.  It’s almost as bad as drilling.

The Randoms filled out election ballots last night, and today Mrs. R will drop them off at the county elections office. Boom. I naively hope our ballots help stem the tide of crazy out there. But there’s a lot of it.

Neighborhood Watch

October 26, 2014


Titles besides “MAST0009″ or “MIXST014″

October 21, 2014

Back to work today after a week off. Part of that time the Randoms spent in a lovely cabin on Orcas Island. I made recordings, including multitrack instrumental+sample pieces; field recordings from the deck overlooking (overhearing?) a little bay full of birds and lapping sounds, breezes, planes and ferry engines; and recordings from my trusty Grundig SW/AM/FM/VHF receiver. Not exactly communing with nature was I. Well, that’s not correct. I was communing with nature in my own way! I managed to work several field & radio recordings into my multitrack pieces, which totaled 9 in all. That makes 70 tracks I have in the hopper, awaiting whatever is next for them. Some could use additional material, and some could use re-mixing for balance. But a lot of them are ready to go into an album or four. Lately I’ve been putting all my current candidate tracks in a big shuffle on Winamp. It helps me to get familiar with what actually start out as very alien pieces to me. The way I construct most of my music means I end up with surprising results. I guess that’s why it’s “experimental” music. I need to listen to them quite a few times before I feel they are really “mine” and can give them titles besides “MAST0009″ or “MIXST014″ y’know.