Archdale Building - a picture!

I've wanted to take this picture for a long time. Finally, right?
This is the Archdale Building and it's reflection in the Dobbs Building as seen from the stair approaching from Salisbury Street.
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Soundtrack project underway

Actual work on the soundtrack/scoring project in which I've been lucky enough to get involved has begun. And of course, when I say "actual work," I'm referring to my role only. The film had been shot and is nearly finished with rough edits (from what I understand).

 I had a great meeting with the director last week. We went over the scenes that I am  expected to be scoring and some new ones that I will get to score, too.

Seeing the scenes definitely got the wheels spinning. I spent a few days stewing and plotting - making some very abstract notes that only I might (hopefully) understand.

Last night I sent a rough mix of the first track to the director. I chose an easy scene to break the ice - one where my notes where less vague (and I think pointed me in the right direction) and one which isn't pivotal to the tone of the movie.

I've got my work cut out for me with some if the other scenes, so I felt the need to break myself in after several months of not recording anything of value because of things Real Life threw at me.

 I'll upload the rough to my soundcloud site (http://soundcloud.com/brandonwhitesell).


the rounding up of crickets

From the looks of things here at my blog, you'd think things have been quiet with me. If you follow my twitter feed or are a facebook friend, you might have noticed a severe decline in activity. NEVER FEAR! I've been busy as ever with all things personal, professional and musical.

The personal stuff, to quote a drea friend, "isn't blog-worthy." So, you don't get that - it's not why you read this anyway.  I should like to my lady's store, though. www.eponaandoak.com. First Fridays there have been great! 

Professionally, facebook friends will have an inkling that the job was in jeopardy but is now "safe." I work for the State. We're havign budget problems. My particular position looked redundant on paper. Believe me, it's not. This place would crumble without me - so I like to think. Now i get to see some projects through and move to the new Green Square Complex next year-ish. (Providing the budget doesn't...well, you know...)
Musically, is where the fun stuff is. The Magic Babies had practice space troubles - flooding, crap landlords, theft, fire, you name it. So we packed up and moved out. We've been taking some time to write and try to get excited about our sound again. Playing the same songs for a year and a half can make them not the best part of practice (that falls to story telling and hanging about). So the writing is happening, and it's going well.

Close hasn't really gotten together in a while. we both got too busy and fell off. I feel like it's an open-ended project that we'll both get back to. I still have to release the EP "Shrugging Off Reincarnation" it comes up on random every now and again - not too bad!

In exchange for doing my album art for "books without pictures," I gave Roy my voice for one of his Offish tracks. I just got a copy of that EP emailed to me. Very nice collection. I hope he puts it up for release/purchase/download somewhere - i'd love to share. His style is very sparse. My vocals have new.  He send me his instrumentals and a series of pictures with the title. I interpreted his idea into lyrics and it worked, apparently. Not a Poles Apart song, but definitely got the wheels turning again.

Travis and I (onlooker) haven't done much besides move our site over to bandcamp. He's been busy raising the most adorable baby girl on the planet. 

I've been asked to score a handful of scenes in an upcoming Indie film out of Durham. I've read the script, met the director and seen an extended trailer and footage. None of these disappointed. I am very excited about this project and can't wait to see where it goes. And what I end up creating for it! I'll get a "scored by" credit, i think. And possible residuals from soundtrack sales, i hope.

The Chapel Hill band, Erie Choir, asked me to add some piano to their recordings. It was a great experience learning the songs and hitting the studio. The 100 year old upright piano at the studio was inspiring and definitely influenced my playing. The songs were kind of Costelloy-Kinksy. Horns and everything! Look out!

Lastly, "Books without pictures" has sold a whopping 5 copies and been streamed about 30 whole times, probably by me. I, obviously, have been having a hard time getting the word out... I'd rather make music than try to convince people to listen to it. That part feels slutty. 

Thanks for bearing with the long catch-up post and the silence in-between. More posts of the less-lengthy variety will follow now that this initial round-up is finished!


Books Without Pictures - be part of my street team!

Hello, readers.
My solo instrumental recording, Books Without Pictures, has been out for a month and a half now. I've received some great feedback and comments via email and facebook from you all. Thank you so much.

Since this is truly a solo endeavor - meaning I'm on my own for marketing, too - It's taken some time to get to promoting this collection of which i'm very proud... but terribly shy about. I'd like your help in spreading the word about this admittedly hard to market album.

I've made the album available to stream for free over at SoundCloud.com or on my blog. If you've streamed it and enjoyed it, I would appreciate a review or rating at  iTunesemusicamazon, or store of your choice.
Naturally, i'd REALLY like it if you decided to purchase the whole release from iTunesemusic and amazon (as a real CD even!).
I would most sincerely appreciate any reviews or ratings on any of these sites. Your votes/ratings/reviews will help me promote this to a larger audience - it's just me here... hopefully it can be just me and you, too.

Here's a (long overdue) explanation of the album:
I was struck by sudden and maddening inspiration to capture sounds, melodies and strategies that were running around in my head and had the unique privilege of actually having the time to capture them. I only had the slightest idea of what I wanted these songs to sound like when I started them; but one by one they began to take shape - a real shape - one that had faces, emotions, plots, twists, turns, ups and downs. 

After these tracks started to accumulate, I caught onto their trend - their pattern - they were representing a vague sense of maturity through process, performance and arrangement. 
When we all grew up to start reading books without pictures, we stepped into a realm of guided objectivity - pictures are painted in our minds by our relationship with what is happening on the page. It is my hope that "Books Without Pictures" can give you just that sort of experience with melody and arrangement.

Thank you so much for listening and for being my "street team" by spreading the word and writing a review.
I'll make it up to you with a new free track very soon.


P.S. I broke all the links to the old horrible mixes (leaving the commentary intact ) of the tracks from "Books Without Pictures" on this blog. You'll thank me later.


Winter Finally Fading - piece for piano & two tubas


this winter has blown. lots of cold. lots of ramen. but it's sunny out now and i can tell it's going to break really soon.

i spent all last weekend stacking my Nord (man, oh man i love this keyboard) with a very nice Steinway and some orchestral samples.  The Tuba is my new favorite cello.  It blows, too - but in a much better way than this winter has.

This is for all of you up north.


Brian Eno Documentary

{I needed to bookmark this video to watch later, so why not do it here for everyone.}
Brian Eno on BBC - an hour long video.

Very very interested to hear what he has to say. Anyone who knows me knows that I love this man's music.
Let's enjoy.


new song - Heart Is Deep Space

This is another instrumental. 
Heart Is Deep Space

The title comes from a chapter of a book that I'm reading - The Raw Shark Texts
"My Heart was deep space and my head was maths."



First Song of the Year - Fake Flesh (instrumental)

Fear not, listener - this one has no singing. 
It'a an ambient piece built solely for relaxation and transportation. Buckle up for this snooze fest!

I had been messing about with an arpeggiator and was scared of creating a dance hall anthem. Leave it to a Rhodes and a Reverb (and a session of deep breathing) to chill things out a bit. There's an obvious homage to Roedelius in here.

This collection of instrumentals (and maybe the singtastic Empty Vessel) is growing into something quite nice. I haven't really had a proper solo release since 2001! better get on it. Time is slipping away.

It's a personal goal to work on something every chance i have - which right now looks like saturdays. I'm not foolish enough to think that i can finish something each week; but the discipline is essential. I've been spending too much time reading and too little time creating. vacation is over. time to rock everyone to sleep.