Music during COVID-19
It’s been just over a year since COVID-19 forced us all to stay home. It’s been a terribly difficult year for so many around the globe, and I don’t mean this post to minimize the plight of others, but rather simply highlight one of the silver linings in my past year.
One of the things I miss most from pre-COVID days is playing live. I had to cancel a show with my jazz trio when things started getting locked down. Since I still needed a “performance outlet” for my music, I decided to start recording some things as home, where the unifying motive was to challenge myself in some way. Singing is not my musical forte, so a lot of these involve me singing (sorry!).
Don’t think twice
I wanted to learn how to use Adobe Premiere and Ableton Studio, so I decided to record a song I knew well in guitar and that is in my vocal range, but performing all the parts myself. I’m pretty happy with how it turned out!
In these sets of videos I wanted to challenge myself learning and performing rap songs, which I’m a big fan of. Our family got really into Hamilton during this time, so many of these are Hamilton-related.
I discovered Rufus Wainwright during this period and fell in love with his song “Going to a Town”:
I was able to get a disklavier which had been a dream of mine for many years. I started playing around with negative harmony:
I wrote some code to generate pretty visuals reacting to what I was playing, using a multi-pendulum setup:
Using Music Transformer and my disklavier I was able to “jam” with AI.
And finally, I started a YouTube channel (subscribe to it!!) where in each episode I explore a topic in Computer Science, a topic in Music, and combine them in creative ways.
It has its own section on my site, but here are the videos I made during this year:
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