A New Year…A New Ukulele?

Kala Mahogany Soprano Ukulele

by AVAZELAFONE

I received an unexpected present this past Christmas -a beautiful little mahogany ukulele. Being a soprano, it is a tiny thing.

After about a half an hour of fumbling about, I managed to coax a few plucky chords and clinky notes out of its impossibly small little body, which now rests safely on a mandolin hanger beside my favorite acoustic guitar, also constructed of mahogany.

Getting ahead of myself, the next day I set up a mic and improvised my first ukulele track on a song in the works.  It sounded great, at first, at second, but repeated listening led to my cutting the part down bit by bit.  Cut it here, shorten it there, and leave the more interesting chime-like parts chugging away in the mix.  But the more I tried to hear its rightness the more I heard its flaws.  The stuff of life!

Sometimes you can plunk any odd thing into a mix, and sometimes you can’t.  After cutting most all of the ukulele track, I’m left with a few bars in the bridge.  I’ve tried a funky and percussive 70’s keyboard part, a dark-sounding synth bass, a crazy industrial rhythmic churning from a Moog, and an electric bass guitar.  I even sampled the ukulele, but no sweet spot yet. 

Nevertheless, I still look forward to giving this baby ukulele its own special moment, maybe even its own song, once its ready.  Until then, aloha!

Moog Semi-Modulars, Working Them In

Moog Mother-32 and DFAM (Drummer From Another Mother)

by AVAZELAFONE

I haven’t had these for very long, but the Moog Mother-32 and the Moog Drummer From Another Mother are definitely capable of producing beautiful tones and savage noises.  Fantastic little beasties!  You can hear the M-32 as a primary instrument in “Indivisibly Pink,” although the lead is both the Moog and an Arturia Minibrute SE stacked on top of each other, audio-wise.

One of the new the new tracks I’m working on is centered around a lovely Moog line – a rather buttery-sounding horn tone vaguely reminiscent of the unforgivable excesses of certain prog-rock acts, although it isn’t.  At least, I hope not.  With a robust sequencer on board, the M-32 is just begging to be programmed and stored.

The DFAM, on the other hand, is much less intuitive than the M-32.  Trying to coax a compelling percussion out of it is no simple matter.  However, the effort can prove worthwhile.  When you do hit upon the right alignment of its many knobs and dials you’ll know it.  And speaking of knobs, my unit deviates from the standard issue Moog machine in that I have replaced a number of knobs with larger aftermarket knobs, nineteen actually.  The originals seemed more slender twig of a fiddler stick than functional.  But what a small price to pay for such a remarkable synth.  

An Introduction

by AVAZELAFONE

I am in the process of rebuilding avazelafone.com after having left the old site in a state of neglect.  This means that what you see here today may no longer be here tomorrow.  In fact, it may never have been here in the first place!  Nevertheless, you may find some reason to linger a while.  I will do my best to pump up the content with the occasional musings and updates on AVAZELAFONE things.

And really, my main interest here is to hook you up with my music.  So, look for information on releases, a bit of historical context thrown in for good measure, perhaps a few remixes, things in process, you know the routine.  I do plan to release video in 2019 – be looking for that,  In the meantime . . . ta-da!