Happy Birthday Cris

So few people listen to my music, fewer give any feedback. Cris is one of the very few people who was as close to a fan of my music as I’ve ever had. Cris constantly was psyched each time I had something new (back when I often had something new), always brought it up each time we met, and even wanted to collaborate somehow, though I’m not sure how we were going to combine my piano with his voice. xP

His death is a heavy one for me, as it has been with previous friends. His memory is a reminder of praise from a friend, and it keeps me from giving up on my music.

As a musician and friend, I raise a glass to you Cris. Miss you dearly. We’re gonna meet once again in musician heaven. 😉

cris on music

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Mannequin Eyes EP

I delete a lot of my in-progress material as soon as I make a new version. The first three tracks in this EP are tracks from my unfinished project There Goes Everybody. The first track “One Heart’s Trash” would have been the 1st track to the album; I never recorded the vocals to it. The second track “Mannequin Eyes” is the most and only finished thing of what I had, and considered the actual track that would have been on the album. The third track “Toy Soldier’s Arms” includes my first or second take with the vocals, though I didn’t keep going for a final take. The album was planned to be from 11 to 18 tracks; I think I was settling on 14 before I gave up on it. I’ve pushed all the other tracks into my “ideas” folder, which is where I do derive a lot of sounds from. So, while the album There Goes Everybody won’t see the light of day, the music will still make it out in some capacity. I’m not planning on recording anything until next year; I didn’t bring my keyboard with me to Sacramento.

So the fourth track in this EP, “They’re All Crazy,” was not planned to be in the album, it was made after I had already quit on TGE, because I was stressed and upset that I didn’t go through with it. I gave myself only one day to create the track from scratch.

The last two tracks are sounds pulled right out of my “ideas folder,” since I felt like adding more to this release, and just to show a couple random ideas that had floated around for a while in that folder. They’re pretty nice. These ideas of course will have obvious mistakes, but not too great that I couldn’t share them here.

Mannequin Eyes cover

This is considered the last release of “My Ex Epilogue”

From now on I publish as “anErnestCastle”

Meaning

We ended up spending three more days at Yosemite. I didn’t enjoy the second half as much though because we didn’t have much planned as compared to the first half.

Some pictures from Yosemite taken on my camera before it died:

IMG_0776IMG_0836IMG_0843

Crossing the river through this tree was a little riskier than last time, given how the water was running up to the bottom of the trunk; last time the stream was calmer and not touching the trunk. The water isn’t deep though, maybe up to my waist, though ya know, depth perception..IMG_0775I don’t have many more to show, so I’ll hold on to them like I’ve held on to so many other pictures. Now I have three batteries and two chargers. I will try adding more pictures to these posts. Let’s say at least 5. Of course all being pictures I’ve taken.


Questions:

I’m moving way from the Book of Questions in favor of a different list of questions. These questions are less trivial, more philosophical. I’ll still put trivial questions on, and those will come from me, just to satisfy my own ego.. :F

A simple question asks: What is the meaning of life?

Life is what you make of it. All the things you do, experience, refine who you are. Note: Not Define – defining yourself puts you in a corner you’re expected to live by (The expectations coming from others and yourself). You don’t need to have a definition the way words do. That’s what separates you from just a word. The more you experience things, the harder it will be for you to be defined. Call yourself a lump of clay. Let yourself be picked up, let yourself be dropped. Picked up again. Punched into, sat on the shelf, kicked, caressed, lifted into the sky, forgotten and remembered, hated and loved. Do the same to the rest. The more the clay gets handled the more refined it becomes. Life doesn’t have to look like a perfect sphere, it can be just a lump of clay. Of course we want more though.

Some though will search for meaning, like if it’s something not inherent, something you gotta work to achieve, rather than the work itself. The pursuit of happiness is the same. We search for things that might make us happier; things that can be taken away from us. Babies don’t need much, or anything really, to be happy. Maybe they know that’s up…

Some will look to religion for help in meaning. Organised religion will claim to have the right answers and guidance for finding the worth in life. It will always go too far though. To me going too far would be a disregard for science or logic, an obligation to pay materials, or indoctrination of young. I wanted to find meaning on my own, so I rejected faiths, I rejected gods. Even if I came up with similar ethics like the golden rule of respect, at least I was able to come to it on my own using logic, not writing it down on paper over and over again.. that’s what it felt like before.

Meaning in life is not easy, it shouldn’t be. It should be a constant struggle to become more of who we are right now, to be more of who we were yesterday. We get there by having new experiences, of any kind, of any weight. The world is going and going and it it gets heavier, or it feels heavier, once we start slacking off, once we feel the pressure and it takes its toll on us. Losing something precious can challenge our meaning, and more our perspective. The world will suddenly get heavier. The world will seemingly slow down, but it never does. We’re simply falling behind. And that’s okay. Because we get to struggle, and then we keep up.

Reminds me of these messages I found a couple years ago:

I’m not sure where I’m going with this anymore. It would have been nice to work on this during the day and not the middle of the night. But I found out yesterday that I’m both a morning and night person now. I take naps throughout the day if I can, and I usually can.

You don’t give up on yourself, EVER. You find self-rules to live by an guide you to the next step, even if it all just for that literal next step. As long as what you do is doing right by the social contract, I’ll be fine with what you become. Okay future me?

We are judged by our actions. Others will judge us, help us find ourselves through their perspectives. You can say you’re a nice person all you want, but that takes away time being a nice person. If others call you a nice person, then there’s no need take time analyzing yourself.. unless you don’t wanna be a nice person, by which I’d say you’re breaking the social contract and being in the wrong. Because if someone were to call me a jerk, then I’d need time to analyze what I’ve done to get me there. And hopefully I can find a way to correct that wrong. This world doesn’t need more jerks. Being a jerk violates my standard of keeping the social contract healthy. And the point is to live in a way that maintains or can further benefit society.

Another question asks: Can food be art?

Gut reaction: Hell no! Food’s purpose in the world is to be eaten! How about make food in a way that I’m not distracted and hesitant to eat it just because of its beauty..

Yeah. Food can be art. Some food takes forever to make, and I value effort in art. So if that food can make its mark in my mouth, who am I to say it wasn’t art. Art is perceived. Food is perceived. Food can be art. Not brand cereal, because of the effort it takes to prepare. But if I were to pick a beautiful ripe posque off a posque tree (posque is my made up fruit/vegetable), and it looked so good, and tasted so good, then I guess it can be art. It takes time for these edibles to grow, and care from mother nature.

The last question asks: One million dollars you can only spend on yourself, GO..

Pianos. Upright pianos, grand pianos, not so grand pianos, and another piano

Oh yeah that reminds of a song I recorded a while back. I was bored and stressed that I hadn’t recorded anything yet at that point, so I worked this song and recorded it and it took the whole day. It’s supposed to be a response to entitled individualism, but it’s really just me poking fun at life. This is is how i have funnnn.

I thought it was already online, but it wasn’t, so I reuploaded it.

Here is the song: “They’re All Crazy”

Here are the lyrics:

For differences in views
I don’t wanna meet you
I just wanna choose
According to my own news
There goes everyone I met
They’re all crazy
It’s not the other way around
That’s just lazy

But get away from me
Or I’ll just look, so much dumb
Please go away
I don’t want to be upset

I could have spoken sooner
I didn’t wanna ruin her
She’s walking through the walls
The pretty one inside my mind
The animals we slaughter
To mainting our guts
Things don’t seem to matter
Until they happen to us

Stay away from me
Or I won’t stop, you don’t want that
Please go away
I don’t want to be upset


Effort, as in, apparent effort. Break a sweat getting things done. Have emotion in your reactions to others’ hard work, or in how you describe the work you went through. If it didn’t look like I went through hell and back to make an epic food art, a painting, or piano song, then it ain’t worth the praise it can get on display.

posque (pronounced posk, o as in Oh), as I can see it, is a fruit-vegetable that can be picked from trees. It ranges in size, from that of an apple to that of a mango. It has a skin thickness like that of a banana, so no as rough as an orange. BUT, as soon as you try to peel it (oh yeah it has a wobbly form, like that of another posque), the posque can spill out quickly. The insides of a posque is liquid form. No kind of soft body like a banana or slices like an orange.. it’s just liquid. The good part is it doesn’t stain, magically.

a year since “Nohemi”

It’s been a year since the terrorist attack in Paris. The one American life lost in that event was Nohemi Gonzalez, CSULB student from El Monte, my hometown. It shocked me, opened my eyes a little more to the numbness from the terror around us. That event also inspired me to immediately record this track. It was the first track I recorded for the album “Tempted to Live,” which was about loneliness and losing loved ones. I put it as the final track to remember, after each time I listened to the album, why the album even exists. It reminds me how insignificant my pain was in comparison to what Nohemi and her family had experienced.

The weight of the world gets heavier each day, and you survive the weight by becoming stronger than you were the day before.

New Album: Tempted To Live

First time in almost four years I both have an album with vocals and one made with a keyboard instead of the usual upright. It took me a while to settle with a set list. It’s my latest album in 13 months.. that’s quite a gap for me. :3

The concept/lyric in “Tempted To Live” is borrowed from a poetry project I wrote in the past year titled “My Escape.” It entails an individual who spends time at a bridge, looking at the reflection of a beautiful sky through the river. He falls in love with the sight, visiting often, eventually creating a world of castles and wilderbeasts using the clouds; he daydreams being up there, away from reality (known as The Monsters). Conflict begins [this is where the piano album begins] when it starts raining and there seems to be no end, resulting in a stream of grey each time the individual looks into the river, to which his character begins regressing. After a few weeks of manic depression (bipolar disorder), he comes to the inference that if he ‘jumps through the grey’ from the bridge, he can find that beautiful sky once more.16 Tempted to Live.jpg

“Dream Away Your Dreams”

New song from my new album “Tempted To Live”

Cover:

image

Lyrics:

Sometimes I can’t sleep
Knowing you’re in the same city
The same fraction of a dot as I
Sometimes I can’t think
Exactly what the monsters want from me
Sometimes I think I’m sticking out

I can’t help but draw
Foreign cities to escape the one I’m in
And all the made up names
I lay by the lake and dream
Of how i’ll live reality
Every possibility

Should I dress like a path?
You’d be willing to take?
Would you walk by me again?
Walk by me again
I’ll dream my dreams away
Or until you decide to stay

I can’t help but draw
Foreign cities to escape the one I’m in
And all the made up names
I lay by the lake and dream
Of how i’ll live reality
Every possibility

Would you join me
To the cemetery
Strike the black cat passing by
We might as well
Soon the hills will harness stones
Reaching up into the sky
And I cried
Through the darkness of the past
I felt it go so fast
I felt it go so fast

Cat, would you walk me by again?