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blue on blue on blue - incoalmo 2023




Michigan, USA



Blues, Ambient, Experimental



March 2023


associated acts//




liner notes

Important Note: You are listening to an end-of-March Demo version of the record. I have not yet mastered, leveled, fixed wrong notes, etc. That's coming soon. 

This concept album is built all around Blue- sometimes it's 'the blues', but more often the color. My 'real life' is as a lighting designer for theatre and dance, and choosing color is one of the joys of the profession. We all have our 'favorite blue' (mine is GAM848, which is being discontinued). The album itself is largely improvisational, kind of atmospheric, a little experimental at times and a lot experimental at other times. Some of it sucks. But overall, I think the vibe of the piece is pretty cool. I hope you enjoy it. 

  1. Midnight Maya: At one time, I was going to name all of my tracks after lighting filter colors, because I'm that kind of nerd. Lee508, Midnight Maya, is a color I've never actually used, but it was such a pretty name that this improvisational air seemed to fit it. 

  2. Tritenopia: When my Spotify year-end breakdown came back, I was surprised to see that my most-played song of 2022 was "Fluffy Little Clouds" by The Orb. That song is odd, and eclectic, and fun. This track is an homage to these trippy dance tunes. The text is AI generated, and voiced by computer simulation. 

  3. 10000°K: Color temperature is measured in degrees Kelvin. Less is 'yellower', and more is 'bluer'. 2000°K is around the color of a candle flame, and 6000°K is indicative of cool white task lighting in commercial architecture. 10000°K is the level of a clear blue sky. This atmospheric piece is dedicated to a clear blue sky. 

  4. Blue Dog (With Apologies to Page): The riffs here are obviously not original. I had fun with it, and I think it's cool, but I hope Jimmy doesn't hear it. 

  5. Cobalt: I'm diving back into the lighting gel book for this piece, which is the darkest blue filter in the book. Each filter has a 'transmission factor' which shows how much white light is absorbed into the filter, and how much is allowed through. Cobalt Blue usually has about a 1% transmission factor. 

  6. CYaNS: In the world of light color theory, Cyan is the secondary color you get when you mix primary Green with primary Blue. In the music world, I listened to a lot of Crosby, Stills, and Nash this year before and after David Crosby's passing. To my ear, the progression sounds a little like some of their stuff. So the extended title would be, I guess, Crosby, Young, and Nash, Stills.

  7. Glacial Drift:  I'm honestly unsure of where this title came from. I had experimented with this track early in the month of March, found it, forgotten, later in the process, and kind of liked it. So I named it and put it on the record. 

  8. blueindigoviolet: Inspired by numbers, this electronic piece translates the wavelengths of this area of the visible color spectrum to sound. The light wavelengths that appear as blue, indigo, and violet are in the neighborhood of 400-500nm, and the droning tone underneath this track (no it's not your tinnitus acting up) range from 400-500hz

  9. Lucille Rocks: The progression, and some of the riffs are borrowed from the great BB King. The sound of rolling over in the grave is BB himself. 

  10. Blue Jean Blues: Meant to be a bonus track, this 'cheater' cover was recorded before the month of March in order for me to get my technology straight. I wanted to use March to make music, not fight with my DAW, so this was my practice track, and it fits the concept. The record officially goes from BB to ZZ now. 

The incoalmo RECORD

The Rule of 40: 

I didn't make it to 40 minutes again this year, but I got closer. This is 10 tracks that add up to around 30 minutes of music. I'm pleased with my progress, and maybe will get closer to the full 40 next year. 

The Rule of 30: No more than 30% of the album can be written before March 1

Most of the rule-breaking involves my last track Blue Jean Blues, which is a cover, therefore written before March 1. It may even have been written before I was born. Some of the other stuff had some disparate ideas, riffs, chord progressions prior to March 1, but I'm not counting any of it as 'written'. 30% of 30 minutes is 9 minutes, and BJB is a 5 minute track, so I'm going to call this one a win.

The Rule of 20: No more than 20% of the album can be recorded before March 1

I also used Blue Jean Blues as my test piece to make sure all my gear worked before March 1, so I could spend time making music and not fighting with my DAW. I get 6 minutes, and only used 5- still a win. 

The Rule of 10: No more than 10% of the album can be a cover

Same tune, but I only get 3 minutes here, so I broke the rule of 10. I was hoping this was going to be a bonus track, but the rest of the month had other plans. There are also a bunch of 'borrowed' riffs in Blue Dog and Lucille Rocks! I'm not sure how to define those two tunes- cover'ish', I guess. If you're gonna go down, go down in flames. 

The Rule of Zero: 

Above is my fess-up. I'm glad for the rule of zero. 

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