The last sunset of 2016, Fremont Center,NY

I have been threatening the release of the CD “Ambient Energy” for several  years now. Unsuccessfully.

This year that will change.

First, a reason/excuse why it’s not done after all this time:

Short answer-it just doesn’t feel right yet.

Longer answer-It’s an ambient album, and creating an ambiance is creating a feeling. If the feeling is not evoked, the album’s a failure. By definition ambiance is a feeling, not just a sound.

The CD has become a bit of a mental/musical block. With at least three other CD’s of material lined up in my queue, none of which are ambient, focus can get diluted. So focus needs to be placed back on the CD at hand. And it has.

I’m really beginning to enjoy ambient energy, and enjoying working on something makes it much easier to persevere. It’s beginning to take on the 4 dimensions I envision and define as ambiance:

  1. Width: of sound, or stereo space
  2. Height: of sound, or frequency spectrum
  3. Depth: some items deep and far away in the mix, others front and center.
  4. Time cohesion: this is the concept that time-space must be gently transitioned through, as Steve Reich once stated “Like the shifting sand of a beach slowly and subtly being sculpted by the waves (not his exact words, but close to the point)

There is one more track that need be added to the CD. It is a piece I created in the early eighties, titled “Arctic Winds”, conceived at the foot of a glacier in a remote area of Alaska a good ways off the the Valdez highway (Chitina, for you map lovers-some places you never forget).

As a side note, that evening I camped within 20 feet of a roaring waterfall. There is an audio-related reason I mention this. Of the thousands of nights I have slept in a tent, only about 2 dozen really stand out a truly memorable and that was one of them. Though the sound of the falls was deafening i had a great rest that night. The power of organic white noise I guess.

The original composition, though still powerful at evoking the space I envisioned, lacked the feel, due to limits of technology (4-track reel-to-reel, DX-7 and sequencer) and the lacking of my production abilities at the time. I feel it is in need of a modern make-over.

For historical purposes, I posted the original “Eighties rendition” on soundcloud.

That is the one major task that need be tackled before the final CD compilation work. But it will get done. And I make the vow that “Ambient Energy” will be completed in 2017.

And in this opening to another year. I beg your indulgence and leave you with this wish/toast/quote I found on a back road deep in the snow covered mountains of upstate New York:

In this new year:
May you choose paths that take you to the destination of your desires by the start of the next.
May you never be swayed from the path of your dreams
May you never beckon someone from their own.
May you have the good fortune to have a companion that shares your path
And may you have the wisdom and courage to bid a warm farewell when paths must part
May you always choose the right path over the familiar and comfortable one.


Rendition of Arctic Winds from 1984