Emotional Triggers

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One of the upsides of moving to Europe, was that I finally got a chance to upgrade my battered iPhone5.  It had been having increasing issues after 2 and half years of constant use and abuse, but with an overseas trip coming up, it didn’t make sense for me to sign a new 2-year carrier contract in the US in order to get a new phone.  So, at long last I was finally able to get an iPhone6, something an iOS musician like myself can appreciate for numerous reasons.

One of the more unexpected reasons I’ve discovered, is just how much better the camera is on the iPhone6 compared to my iPhone5.  Given that I’m in a brand new country for only a few weeks now, I’ve of course been out walking and taking a lot of pictures.  It surprised me how great they look once I get back to the computer to look at them.  (this blog post pertains to music, bear with me)

In fact I was discussing this with a friend of mine who’s into photography, and I mentioned I doubt I’ll ever buy a point and shoot camera again. How I think for my needs, the iPhone6 camera is all I’ll likely need ever again.  Convenient since it’s almost always with me too.

Of course my photography friend was aghast.

He sent me numerous links to articles pointing out the flaws in the sensor, the lack of details compared to higher end cameras, endless comparisons with “real” cameras, etc.  I replied that none of that mattered to me, I just like looking at pictures to remind me of certain times in my life, as a way of triggering a memory.  Of course, he then reminded me that this is why the majority of people are ok with low quality MP3s when it comes to listening to music.  Even though it might make a mastering engineer like myself cringe to read that people are tossing their CDs after ripping them to 128kbps MP3s.

Obviously, the analogy is spot on, and we agreed to disagree having reminded ourselves that not everyone needs accuracy or the best available detail to get enjoyment out of different forms of media.  It’s a good reminder that often the people most wrapped up in the creation of an artform are the only ones who really care about details of the medium used.  So while musicians might debate ad naseum the best algorithm for dithering, or photographers might debate…. well whatever it is they debate, it’s important to remember yet again that it’s the message that truly matters.

Of course we should take pride in capturing our message as clearly and transparently as possible, so the medium doesn’t detract from it. But at the end of the day that aspect of our craft pales in significance to how well we actual convey emotion or express an idea.  As always, it’s those things that trigger the greatest emotions in most people, not how well it was actually recorded.

A good reminder for us all I think.

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Speaking of my move to Luxembourg, it’s been a few weeks since my last update so I figured another one was due.  We got word last week that our sea shipment (which has all my studio gear) would arrive in European customs on March 10th, which meant another 3-7 days until it was delivered to our new home.  Woo hoo, great news, as this was some what earlier than we had expected.  Unfortunately, yesterday they revised that date to be March 26th at the earliest.  My 40th birthday is March 29th, and I was really hoping that we could be done with all the move stuff by then.

Drat.

Oh well, not much I can do about it, so I just remind myself that at least I still have the laptop, my iPad, and the electribe.  Once we get out of this noisy hotel and into our new quiet apartment, I can finally dive in and get some proper music making done.  Good thing too, as I’ve been asked if I would be interested in doing a live set in a few months, opening for one of my mastering clients who’ll be on tour in Europe then.  Should be fun and at the very least now I have proper incentive to dig in and get the new electribe set done.  I’ll of course post more details once I get them.

In the meantime, I’ll leave you with a fun Luxembourg fact.  Did you know that clothes dryers in Europe don’t actually dry your clothes?  In the interest of energy savings, they use less heat and don’t use forced air to dry your clothes in 30 minutes or less like we’re used to in the states.  That means you can literally run them with the motor spinning for 5 or 6 hours, and your clothes will still be wet.  Energy saving at it’s finest  😉

Hopefully in a couple weeks I’ll have more positive news about the studio opening, and maybe, just maybe by then my underwear will be dry too.

Until then, peace and beats,
Tarekith

We’ve Arrived

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It took 4 days of driving across the US, 1 record snow storm in Chicago, 2 flight delays, 14 hours stuck on a plane, 3 hours of hair-raising driving in Germany, along with whole bunch of other adventures, but at long last we have arrived in Luxembourg!

The journey has been tiring more than anything, long days learning to adapt in a country where you don’t speak the language(s) combined with jet lag will do that though.  This first week has been mainly getting ourselves integrated into a new government, learning new rules of the road, trying to find places to get food, and working on getting the last of my business change completed.

Oh yeah, the week before we left Seattle I converted my Inner Portal Studio business from a sole-proprietor based company to an LLC corporation.  I mean, why do things the easy way?  🙂  Mainly on the advice of other business owners I talked to who moved overseas, hopefully it means less issues with the Luxembourg government when it’s tax time.  It was something I was planning on doing in 2015 anyway before we decided to move, so other than the stress of trying to get it all done before we headed overseas, no surprises there.

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At the moment we’re in temporary housing in a hotel until our apartment is ready at the beginning of March.  The good news is that it took us less than a week to find a place to live for the next two years, and it’s a brand new building with incredibly thick walls so I can still work from “home” for my mastering business.  Well, once all my gear arrives sometime in April anyway.  The bad news is that I’m finding it really hard to make any music or be creative in a location like this.  Lots of noise from other people in the hotel, and there’s a TON of construction in Luxembourg during the day near where we are staying.

A least I have the electribe with me though, and since it’s battery powered, I’ll be able to take it just about anywhere once I find some good places to get away for a bit.  Plus it provides hours of childish fun when I get bored.  🙂

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Aside from trying to get a new live set written, I’m hoping to finally make some more progress on my audio production book.  Hopefully when we move into the new apartment in 3 weeks, things will be quieter and more conducive to creative writing.  I was never one of those people who could zone out in a busy coffee shop for instance.

Well, that’s about it for now.  Just wanted to give everyone a quick update on my move!

De paix et battements,
Tarekith