April 22nd, 2017
"Look again at that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives."
- Carl Sagan
I have always loved Carl Sagan's "Pale Blue Dot" essay. It's even better hearing his voice reading it. In the Cosmos reboot from a couple of years ago, when they played a clip of Carl I actually cried. Yes, I am a huge dork. So needless to say, Sagan reading about the pale blue dot gets me every time.
There are a ton of videos on youtube combining his quotes with music & images. Some are quite good, some use horrible cheesy music or hokey stock photos. I thought, heck I'm a video editor, I'll make my own video. But then I realized how sometimes the images can detract from the prose.
So I decided to combine Sagan's Pale Blue Dot with one of my all-time favorite pieces of music - Max Richter's "On the Nature of Daylight." The next step was to use that mashup to lead off a mix dedicated to Earth Day 2017 & the coinciding March for Science. If you look at the track titles the theme is obvious.
I eventually did make a video to go with the mashup. But it's just one image. It's a pic taken by the Cassini spacecraft from just beyond Saturn. It's Pale Blue Dot 2.0 if you will. The video is just one long slow pull from earth out to the full image.
Take a look here...
Enjoy the mix, Earth Day and remember - Science not Silence.
T R A C K L I S T :
- 00:00 Carl Sagan & Max Richter - Pale Blue Dot & On the Nature of Daylight
- 05:05 Jim Cole & Spectral Voices - Hear Earth
- 08:00 Steve Roach - On This Planet
- 15:20 Map & Diagrams - Particles of Earth
- 18:10 A Small Good Thing - Scorched Earth
- 23:15 Adam Pacione - Warming Trend
- 25:27 Shuttle358 - Melt
- 30:10 Jeff Greinke - Changing Skies
- 32:50 Brian Eno - Climate Study
- 35:30 J. Ralph - The Glaciers Are Telling
- 37:20 Michael Brook - Earth Alone
- 39:20 Mathias Grassow - Planetary Consciousness
- 43:45 Lav & Purl - Earthship
- 49:50 Robert Scott Thompson - Pale Blue Dot
- 65:00 end
July 16th, 2016
I've done a lot of mixes over the last ten years. Obviously I try to have a theme or mood for each mix. It can get difficult come up with new motifs. That's why I love the idea that Mike G of Ambient Music Guide had last year. We decided to trade guest mixes and he suggested we each send each other a few mix titles and that we select one and build the mix off of that title. It really gets me thinking differently and can help get me out of a rut when looking for mix inspiration.
This mix is the second guest mix from Mike. I love getting these mixes because so often there are artists or genres I normally don't use but that I love listening to. This mix exemplifies that perfectly. I don't listen to as much "space" music as I used to and as I lost myself in this mix I realized that I really need to revisit this style of ambient more often. I am looking forward to using this as a stargazing soundtrack when I vacation in northern Wisconsin later this summer.
This is what Mike had to say about The Color of Space...
"Space is a theme with multiple meanings and is woven throughout much
modern ambient and downtempo instrumental music. My mix The Color Space
is a soundtrack of the cosmos. All the music has a cosmic feel, whether
it be one of inner space, outer space or the indefinable regions between."
T R A C K L I S T :
- 00:00 Michael Stearns - Encounter
- 03:16 Michael Stearns - Scared Site theme(extended)
- 06:23 Oliver Lieb - Dimension X(edit)
- 14:30 Upper Astral - Massage One(edit)
- 24:20 Healer - Speaking With A Def Man(edit)
- 31:50 Stellardrone - Eternity
- 37:45 Alpha Wave Movement - Travel Into The Nexus
- 42:30 Jonn Serrie - The Far River
- 51:35 Boris Lelong - Oxygen
- 63:07 Jon Jenkins - Ebb(extended)
- 67:32 Solar Quest - Trisine(edit)
- 72:08 Michael Stearns - Star Dreams
August 12th, 2015
The title of this one pretty much says it all.
So download the mix, grab some bourbon, a blanket and head outside to witness the 2015 version of the Perseid meteor shower.
T R A C K L I S T :
- 00:00 Moesko - Stargazer
- 03:55 Marconi Union - Still
- 07:35 36 - Sky Fire
- 11:11 Alio Die - nuvole di palissandro
- 12:25 Alva Noto - Solphaer
- 17:55 Julio Di Benedetto - Original Light
- 26:26 Robert Davies - Nightshade
- 35:20 Klowknfe - Gamma
- 42:30 Horizon Fire - Earthlight
- 44:55 Moesko - Cloudgazer
- 47:55 Donnacha Costello - You Are Not Here
- 51:05 Marconi Union - Fading
- 57:15 end
December 6th, 2013
know this is not the best time of year for sitting out side and
stargazing. At least not here in Wisconsin. But I haven't done a
stargazing mix in a long time so i thought I'd throw this out there.
piece that got me started on this mix isn't an actual song. It's
NASA's Voyager spacecraft recording the sound of interstellar space. Voyager's plasma wave instrument detected the vibrations of dense
interstellar plasma, or ionized gas, from October to November 2012 and
April to May 2013. You can find the recording here... Voyager.
couldn't resist using that sound as a launch pad for this mix. The
rest is pretty straight forward ambient/space music. For some strange
reason I felt compelled to make this mix nearly 2 hours long. If you
want to lay outside for two hours & gaze at the night sky in the
middle of December, better bring some scotch & an electric blanket.
T R A C K L I S T :
- 00:00 NASA Voyager recording of interstellar space
- 00:40 Loscil - Second Narrows Specta Ciera Version
- 03:30 Ishq - Globular Cluster
- 07:30 Harmony & Decay - Hypnotic Sequence
- 12:40 Eluder - The Event Horizon
- 14:50 Marsen Jules - A Room Full of History
- 19:15 Marconi Union - Always Numb
- 23:40 Porzellan - Floating Reception
- 24:30 Sonmi451 - Omicron Ceti
- 29:30 Loscil - ss1.2 unit circle
- 32:50 Wouter Veldhuis - Blue Forest I
- 36:00 Variant - Thru the Cosmos(ison + spica)
- 43:33 Brian Eno - Surf Birds
- 46:10 Mark Rownd - Place of Grace
- 52:20 Kissy Suzuki - rubbish & Beauties part 1
- 56:30 Altus - Floating Free
- 1:00:40 Diatonis - Whiring Above Our Heads
- 1:04:15 A Produce - Inner Sanctum
- 1:12:00 Aglaia - Dust Across the Border
- 1:15:30 Christopher Short - Unknown Constellation #2
- 1:22:30 Fripp & Eno - Meissa
- 1:29:10 Ithaca Trio - Catching Monkeys
- 1:34:00 Steve Roach - Deep Sky Time
- 1:41:10 Sylken - Sleepless
- 1:50:10 Deepchord - Driftwood
- 1:51:10 Vidna Obmana - Night Blooming
- 1:57:49 end
April 26th, 2013
The good folks over at Nocturne Records asked me to do a mix for their podcast. They put out some great music so how could I resist!
Most of the time with my mixes I'll stumble upon one or two tunes that spark an idea. In this case I rediscovered an old electronic album that I had in college. It's a compilation called Music from the 21st Century.
That album got me thinking about science fiction music, whether it's music used in sci-fi or just tunes that sound like they should be in a sci-fi film.
This mix uses two tracks from the 21st Century album along with several other old electronic cuts. A couple of those older cuts are from another college favorite, Synergy - Cords. I loved that album back then & still go to it occasionally for a nostalgia hit. The whole album definitely has a sci fi movie soundtrack sort of feel to it. The mix isn't totally old electronics, there is also some newer material mixed in.
T R A C K L I S T :
- 00:00 Vangelis - Blush Response
- 04:00 Synergy - A Presuming to be Modern I
- 06:50 Richard Pinhas - L' Ethique
- 11:20 Lights Out Asia - All These Worlds are Yours
- 13:15 The Black Dog - Lounge
- 14:15 Frank Comstock - On the Dark Side of the Moon
- 16:00 Michael Garrison - Escape (music from the 21st century)
- 18:20 Synergy - Disruption in World Communications
- 22:00 David Bowie - Abdulmajid
- 25:10 Elf Machine - Evolutions Arrow
- 29:00 Underworld & John Murphy - Capa Meets the Sun
- 30:45 Vector Lovers - Girl + Robot
- 32:50 Maps & Diagrams - Skynet
- 35:30 Bruce Courtois - Inside the Black Hole (music from the 21st century)
- 37:10 Vangelis - Longing
- 38:35 Solar Fields - Blue Moon Station
- 45:00 Cliff Martinez - First Sleep
- 47:30 Rena Jones - The Problem of Time
- 49:50 Schengen - Me n' U
- 50:30 Lopside - To the Point of Obscurity
- 55:50 Vangelis - Fading Away
- 59:00 end
August 5th, 2012
Back in November I did a mix for the launch of Curiosity, NASA's newest Mars rover. Now 8 months later, Curiosity has arrived at Mars. So this mix is music for landing on Mars, in honor of Curiosity's EDL or entry, descent and landing.
As I write this, the landing has not taken place yet. But I wanted to get the mix uploaded on the day of the landing. I'll update the post depending on the result of the EDL.
I started off this mix just picking electronic tunes I liked for this theme then quickly realized that many of the titles fit perfectly. Track titles such as "We Travel", "Bold Advances" "Flying (in crimson skies)" and "Arrival". So I looked for a few more with appropriate names, kept a few that had titles that didn't matter and the mix was launched.
T R A C K L I S T :
- 00:00 Marconi Union - We Travel
- 06:55 Tycho - Adrift
- 14:40 Dub Trees - Dreamlab
- 17:35 Loops of Your Heart - End
- 22:50 Ricardo Donoso - conditional formatting descent
- 24:55 Lunar Testing Lab - Slinky Antenna
- 26:45 Bersarin Quartet - Der Mond, der Schnee und Du
- 30:47 Stendec - Descent
- 32:05 Helios - Bold Advances
- 34:15 Anenon - The Sea and The Stars
- 35:44 Clark - Skyward Bruise/Descent
- 37:15 Daft Punk - Arrival
- 38:56 Marconi Union - Flying (in crimson skies)
- 45:10 Ólafur Arnalds & Nils Frahm - b1
- 52:15 Altus - The Awe and Wonder
- 58:40 Wixel - Surface Dust
- 1:00:18 Hecq - Red Sky
July 22nd, 2012
Those of us who are science dorks were fascinated earlier this month when it was announced that the discovery of a new particle was very likely the elusive Higgs-Boson. The particle has been the subject of a nearly 50 year hunt to explain why matter has mass.
This mix is a celebration of that discovery. With titles like "Particle," "Sweet Collision," and "Magnetic Fields," all the track titles work very well with a Higgs-Boson, high energy physics theme.
[ s t r e a m ] [ d o w n l o a d ] [ i t u n e s ]
T R A C K L I S T :
- 00:00 Miles Tilman - Particle
- 03:33 Saul Stokes - Vapor Trails
- 07:30 Mr. Projectile - Tiny Distances
- 08:30 Can - Quantum Physics
- 09:44 Baffo Banfi - Love Magnetic Research
- 14:23 Burial - Shell of Light
- 18:27 John Adams - Short Ride in a Fast Machine
- 23:05 Cliff Martinez - Hi Energy Proton Accelerator
- 25:05 Benjamin Dauer - Sweet Collision
- 30:20 Loren Dent - Sub-Atomic Love Song
- 32:45 Spheruleus - Suspended Particles
- 35:30 Martin Herterich - Silent Fields 2
- 42:25 Maps & Diagrams - Particles of Earth
- 44:44 Pale Sketcher - Tiny Universes
- 48:52 Dub Trees - Magnetica
- 52:21 Jean Michel Jarre - Magnetic Fields part 1
- 59:00 Vir Unis - They Call It The God Particle
- 1:04:11 end
June 6th, 2012
A mix in honor of the recent transit of Venus across the face of the sun. It won't happen again until 2117.
All the tracks have Venus, sun or transit in the title.
T R A C K L I S T :
- 00:00 Casino Versus Japan - Names on Maps of Venus part 6
- 01:27 Laurie Anderson - Transitory Life
- 02:39 Ishq - Diving into Sun
- 8:33 Glen Velez - In Transit
- 10:50 Jon Hopkins - The Wider Sun
- 12:15 Steve Hauschildt - Overnight Venusian
- 16:15 Paul Ellis - Dialing in the Sun
- 24:00 Ishq - The Sun Arcs a Smile
- 26:15 Jim Cole & Spectral Voices - Sun Shower
- 27:40 Motion Sickness of Time Travel - Late Day Sun Silhouettes
- 36:00 Stars of the Lid - Sun Drugs
- 45:40 Montauk - Setting Sun(fragment 1)
- 46:50 Steve Roach & Kevin Braheny - In the Heat of Venus
- 51:10 Casino Versus Japan - Names on Maps of Venus part 1
- 55:55 Biosphere - As the Sun Kissed the Horizon
- 57:24 end
April 22nd, 2012
The music in this mix has a strange, sort of alien feel to it. The pieces are a bit darker, but not creepy or annoying. But they do all have a weird other-worldly sense to them.
This started with the first track, "We Swallowed the Night" by Anduin. It just sounded vaguely alien and a bit threatening. So from there I decided to construct a mix around that feeling.
When I make mixes I collect tracks over time & toss them into a folder to sort through later. Sometimes I'll bring the folder of music to work with me & make the mix there(shhhh, don't tell anyone). The problem with doing that is I have to convert the mp3's to wav or aiff files and in the process the tracks can lose the artist identifier. So I only know the track title but not the artist. That's how I ended up with 4 tracks from Robert Rich & Ian Boddy in one mix. I usually don't like to have that much from album or artist. That's also how the mix ended up with two Pjusk cuts back to back. Oh well, Guess I'll just have to be more careful next time.
I didn't want to go the Lustmord "where black stars hang" route and have the mix be scary alien. I just wanted unearthly alien. Hopefully I hit that tone pretty well.
T R A C K L I S T :
- 00:00 Anduin - We Swallowed the Night
- 01:56 Harold Budd - Dark Star
- 04:16 Hecq - aback
- 06:23 Pjusk - Kram
- 11:44 Robert Rich & Ian Boddy - Threshold
- 12:28 nebulo & druc drac - rive nord - rive sud
- 14:30 EU - 60 Planets
- 16:37 Monolake - phenomenon
- 19:10 Robert Rich & Ian Boddy - Methane
- 22:10 Anduin - The Voyeurs Wall of Glass
- 25:25 Lights Out Asia - All These Worlds Are Yours
- 27:15 Jon Hopkins - Cold Out There
- 30:16 Pjusk - Granitt
- 33:33 Pjusk - Flint
- 37:15 Loscil - Pressure
- 39:55 Roly Porter - Arrakis
- 42:05 Loren Connors - Red Mars
- 43:15 Robert Rich & Ian Boddy - Ice Fields
- 48:05 Saul Stokes - We Resolve
- 53:10 Robert Rich & Ian Boddy - Last Outpost
- 55:04 end
March 4th, 2012
I've been on kind of a moon binge lately. It started with watching HBO's excellent series, "From the Earth to the Moon." Then I read "We Reach the Moon," a book written in 1969 by John Noble Wilford, the NYT science reporter.
Next I moved on to the wonderful film, "For All Mankind." It's the story of the men who went to the moon, told in their own words. Beautiful images and of course Eno's remarkable soundtrack, "Apollo : Atmospheres & Soundtracks".
So my head has been stuck on the moon in 1969. And that is the genesis of this mix, 1969. All the music used in this mix is either from 1969, related to the moon or both.
I know it may a bit of a cliche to start with Kennedy's moon speech at Rice University but I love that speech & that part still gives me chills. 11 of the tunes are actually from 1969 :
- Bowie - Space Oddity
- King Crimson - Moonchild
- Miles Davis - Sanctuary
- Pink Floyd - Sysyphus
- Terry Riley - Poppy Noggod
- Genesis - In the Beginning
- Soft Machine - Spaced
- Don Cherry - Man on the Moon
- Philip Glass - Music in Contrary Motion
- Mort Garson - Walking in Space
- Beatles - Across the Universe (covered by Phosphorescent)
It's interesting how many of them had moon or space themes. I guess that is where everyone's mind was at the time.
I just had to include a couple of cuts from Eno's "Apollo:Atmospheres & Soundtracks" and from the new Air release, "Le Voyage Dans La Lune." It's a soundtrack Georges Méliès’ short classic, "A Trip to the Moon." It was originally released in 1902 & has been restored in color with Air's new soundtrack.
Also included in the mix are three tunes from a netlabel album by Re-Drum called "1969". All the tracks on the album were made by using sampled music from the year 1969. These are the cuts that I used & the source material used to make those cuts...
1. Time : King Crimson - Moonchild Including The Dream And The Illusion Herbie Hancock - The Prisoner (Alternate Take) Sly & The Family Stone - You Can Make It If You Try Quincy Jones & Bill Cosby - Hikky-Burr Frank Zappa - The Gumbo Variation Booker T & The MG's - Michelle Zephyr - Hard Chargin' Woman Lou Donaldson - Donkey Walk John MacLaughlin - Pete The Poet Herbie Hancock - The Prisoner The Doors - The Soft Parade
2. The Last Breath : The Moody Blues - Eyes Of A Child, Part 1 Zephyr - Somebody Listen Isaac Hayes - By The Time I Get To Phoenix (voice) Internet Anticipation 1969
3. Armstrong : Lonnie Smith - Eleanor Rigby Kool And The Gang - Give It Up Pink Floyd - The Narrow Way (Part 3) The Rolling Stones - Live With Me Voice: First Moon Landing
This was another fun mix to put together, I hope it's a fun listen as well.
T R A C K L I S T :
- 00:00 John Kennedy - "We choose to go to the moon" speech
- 00:00 Apollo 11 l- anding on the moon
- 00:58 Boards of Canada - 1969
- 04:47 David Bowie - Space Oddity (Sébastien Bédé Remix)
- 07:20 David Bowie - Space Oddity continues (demo version)
- 09:50 King Crimson - Moonchild
- 13:25 Miles Davis - Sanctuary
- 18:00 Air - Moon fever
- 21:12 Pink Floyd - Sysyphus part 4
- 23:20 Terry Riley - Poppy Nogood and the Phantom Band
- 28:25 Genesis - In The Beginning
- 31:55 Soft Machine - Spaced Seven
- 33:10 Re-Drum - Time
- 36:45 Don Cherry - Man on the Moon
- 39:10 Air - Seven Stars
- 42:50 Re-Drum - The Last Breath
- 46:15 Philip Glass - Music in Contrary Motion
- 48:10 Mort Garson - Walking in Space
- 50:10 Brian Eno & Daniel Lanois - Silver Morning
- 52:26 Phosphorescent - Across the Universe(Beatles cover)
- 57:21 Re-Drum - Armstrong
- 1:00:03 Eno - Always Returning
- 1:03:46 end