Composer Quest: Let’s Have a Long-Distance “Conversation”

Composer Quest Listening Party 2013-06-19 at 6.13.23 PM

I had been following Internet musician/gamedev, Mr. Whitaker Trebella, for a while on Twitter; firstly because of some sweet Logic improv session videos he had done, and more generally because of his excellent additions to the game music soundtrack world.

One day, many months ago, he mentioned he was going to be interviewed for a new podcast. That podcast was (and still is) called Composer Quest. It’s hosted by a Minneapolis-area composer/musician named Charlie McCarron, and I quite like it. Most of his interview subjects, all whom are composers, are very interesting and they all have a unique take on how to write music.

Twice now Charlie has announced a Composer Quest Quest, wherein he asks listeners to submit some kind of music-related thingy. The first one came and went, as it tasked one with arranging music for a woodwind trio, and that’s not really something I feel comfortable doing. The second, however, seemed worth trying. I signed up, and Charlie doubled me up with someone else who listened to the podcast and was interested in composing a song together. The theme was “Conversation”.

I got matched up with Sam, who is from Chicago, Illinois, about 2,000 miles away. A deadline four weeks away, and both of us living lives outside of Composer Quest, we decided to do our thing remotely instead. Through a weekly series of Facetime and Google Hangouts, we “met”, chatted, went over our recent recordings/ideas, and ultimately devised a funky song called “Dog Eat Dog”. We both worked pretty evenly on the project, either writing lyrics and recording/sequencing music. Sam ended up mixing/mastering it, and today the finished project was livecast on YouTube along with 8 other pairs’ (and a few trios’) creations. It was a blast listening with my wife (and mom furiously texting me) in the room. Collaboration and creation worked out well in this case and the finished product is something to be proud of.

Take a listen below (Sam and I are track #2) and/or download the album from Bandcamp. All tracks are worth your time (but I’m biased and think ours is the best, of course ;-D), as a lot of hard work went into making them.

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