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HYPNOS RECORDINGS => Hypnos News and Announcements => Topic started by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 12:45:40 PM

Title: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 12:45:40 PM
I've just learned that Barry Craig, known to ambient music listeners as A Produce, passed away yesterday. Few details are known as yet, but we believe the cause of death to be illness, possibly pancreatitis, and that Barry was 59.

The work of A Produce stands among the best work in the ambient and trance music field. Much of his work was released on his own Trance Port label dating back to the early 90s, often in beautiful letterpress folder editions for such releases as Reflect Like a Mirror, Respond Like an Echo, Land of 1000 Trances, White Sands, and Inscape and Landscape. More recently Trance Port Special Editions had released CDR versions of new albums as well as reissues of out of print items.

A Produce also released Altara, a collaboration with me (Hypnos founder M. Griffin) on Hypnos in 1999, and the solo album Smile on the Void on Hypnos in 2001. Most recently his collaboration Intangible with Loren Nerell came out on Hypnos this year.

(http://www.hypnos.com/catalog/hypnos-apln-i.jpg)

A Produce artist page on Hypnos
 http://www.hypnos.com/artists-ap.php (http://www.hypnos.com/artists-ap.php)
A Produce information
 http://hypnos.com/aproduce/ (http://hypnos.com/aproduce/)
Trance Port label information
 http://hypnos.com/tranceport/ (http://hypnos.com/tranceport/)

We're very sorry to say goodbye to a talented recording artist at a time when he had recently been creating some of his best work. We will add more information when we have it.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 01:01:45 PM
I'll try to gather some A Produce pictures, but many of them seem to be at least 15 years old. This is the first A Produce picture I remember seeing -- possibly in Wind and Wire magazine in the mid 90s?

(http://hypnos.com/aproduce/ap-portrait.jpg)
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Antdude on September 05, 2011, 01:06:18 PM
Very sad to hear this. I've purchased most of Barry's A Produce albums and enjoyed his work very much. My condolences to his family. We'll miss his artistry, but at least his music will live on. If you haven't heard A Produce, check out the sound samples here on Hypnos.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 01:06:39 PM
My first A Produce CD (as a listener, I mean -- this pre-dated Hypnos by a few years), the letterpress folder EP version of A Smooth Surface from 1994.

(http://hypnos.com/aproduce/surface.jpg)

To this day, that extended track remains one of my favorite A Produce pieces.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 01:09:09 PM
Original letterpress version of Land of a Thousand Trances, which Barry always code-named 1000T (even before the T-1000 in Terminator 2).  1994. This album was later reissued on CDR.

(http://hypnos.com/aproduce/1000t.jpg)
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 01:10:57 PM
White Sands was kind of an oddball among Barry's albums, including both a selection of previously-released tracks from other albums, and a number of new tracks. This 1995 album was another of Trance Port's letterpress folder editions.

(http://hypnos.com/aproduce/wsands.jpg)
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 01:13:58 PM
Inscape and Landscape was the last of the letterpress folder editions, and the most handsome of all, with multiple ink colors including metallic gold. While it made for a beautiful package, and the album sold quite well (back in 1996 when lots of people still eagerly purchased CDs), Barry said the expense of getting these folders printed meant even if he sold all the copies he made, he still wouldn't break even. For this reason, after this release he moved on to a jewel case release for his next album.

(http://hypnos.com/aproduce/inscape.jpg)
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 01:16:10 PM
Reflect Like a Mirror, Respond Like an Echo came out in 1997, Barry's first jewel case CD edition. This album, actually a "deluxe" reissue of one of his earliest recordings, came out around the same time I started Hypnos. I wrote to him after reading one of his magazine interviews, and he sent me a copy.

(http://hypnos.com/aproduce/reflect-se.jpg)

This led to a new, exclusive A Produce track being included on the Hypnos compilation The Other World in early 1998, as well as laying the groundwork for my own collaboration with A Produce, Altara, which came out at the end of 1999.

(http://www.hypnos.com/catalog/hypnos-v-tow.jpg)
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Chad Hoefler on September 05, 2011, 01:20:58 PM
This is very sad news, indeed.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 01:23:50 PM
As I got to know Barry a little better, and we commenced work on Altara (which would be an 18 month marathon collaboration-by-mail), he began suggesting friends of his for consideration as possible Hypnos artists, or at least to contribute to one of our various artists compilations. These compilations were assembled with a "no repeat" policy, so once a track by A Produce appeared on The Other World, we couldn't use a track by him again in the future... so Barry sent a number of other artists my way.

Weightless, Effortless, our 1999 compilation release, included tracks by Dean DeBenedictis (aka Surface 10), Loren Nerell and Scott Fraser, all of whom were referred to me by Barry.

(http://www.hypnos.com/catalog/hypnos-v-we.jpg)
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 01:25:03 PM
choefler and antdude, sorry for stampeding your comments with my flood of historical reminiscences! I appreciate both of you stopping by to comment. I know a lot of people appreciated Barry's work and will miss him.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: electroambientspace on September 05, 2011, 01:29:26 PM
I am so shocked and saddened to hear this terrible news.  It was only a few days ago Mike that you, Barry and I were cracking jokes on FB.  And the new Intangible album with Loren Nerell is fantastic.  What a terrible loss.  My condolences to his family.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: LNerell on September 05, 2011, 01:38:35 PM
Yes I am quite shocked to hear this news myself. His sister emailed me this morning to give me the bad news. Not sure of the details but he checked himself into the hospital sometime Friday, and he passed away sometime yesterday. Here is the most recent picture I have of Barry, him working on a track for our CD Intangible:

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v128/lnerell/My%20studio/PICT0323.jpg)

Barry was so excited by the reaction we were getting from our latest CD, we were already making plans to start work on a follow up. He will be greatly missed. :(
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 01:45:39 PM
Thanks for the much more recent photo, Loren.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 01:46:51 PM
I am so shocked and saddened to hear this terrible news.  It was only a few days ago Mike that you, Barry and I were cracking jokes on FB.  And the new Intangible album with Loren Nerell is fantastic.  What a terrible loss.  My condolences to his family.


Yes Phil, it seemed to come out of nowhere, at least from an outside perspective. I sent little remarks back and forth with Barry here and there on Facebook, but we weren't in frequent conversation lately.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 01:47:50 PM
(http://hypnos.com/catalog/hypnos-apmg-a.jpg)

Work continued on Altara long-distance over a long period of time. In the nineties, before fast, ubiquitous broadband internet, and interoperable multi-track recording platforms, most people collaborated long distance by sending tapes in the mail. Barry worked with ADAT multitrack but I didn't have one of those (they were big machines that used S-VHS tapes to record 8 tracks of digital audio).

I recorded everything to DAT (tiny 4mm tapes that record stereo digital audio only) and imported those into my PC for editing. Barry had a DAT too, so he'd work out multitrack parts on ADAT, mix them down to stereo DAT, and mail these to me. I'd load these into my computer and layer them with atmospheres and effects of my own, then make a new stereo master of the complex-ified mess and dump that to a DAT, and send that to Barry. We worked on this album almost constantly over a very long period of time. After about six months I thought it was done, and felt very happy with it, but Barry thought it was too much drone, not enough rhythm -- or in other words, too much M. Griffin, not enough A Produce.

Incidentally, I've found this is usually the way musical collaborations go, not only the ones I'm personally involved with. It's a back and forth tug-of-war in which each participant yanks things so far in their own direction that the other party must take back as much territory as possible. The sound goes from being too much of one person to being too much of the other person, and sometimes feelings are hurt or frustrations are given voice, before a sort of equilibrium is reached, or one or the other becomes exhausted and gives up.

Neither Barry nor I gave up. We kept volleying tapes back and forth, and my recollection is that at the six month mark and again at the twelve month mark, I thought we had a finished album. At one point it was to be called "Seek Nothing," a title which arose out of my own pursuit of Buddhist meditation during those years, until Barry decided he couldn't stand that. He told me he'd let me pick the album title with no further objection from himself, as long as it wasn't "Seek Nothing," and he'd even allow that title to be used for a single track. That weekend I re-watched Forbidden Planet on DVD. It's one of my favorite classic science fiction films, and somehow Altair (the planet) and Altaira (the girl, also known as Alta) stuck in my head. Additionally, Altara had what I perceived to be a Zen or Tibetan Buddhist quality. So the album became Altara.

As I mentioned, we "finished" the album twice before it was really done, and released to the world. At the time I was pretty frustrated and impatient, but in the years since then I've learned to admit that the final product was better for having been held up in the seemingly endless repetitive cycle of Barry's "not good enough, let's keep at it," rejections. It's a lesson I've tried to hold onto, whether in collaboration with others or in my own creative endeavors. Sometimes you want to be done with something, to call it finished and let it out in to the world, and sometimes you want this so strongly you convince yourself it isn't possible to make it any better and that to try to do so would be foolish. All it takes is a single instance of pushing through this convictions and actually finding that the work can be improved to recognize the game you were playing with yourself. I thank Barry for helping me recognize this, though it frustrated me mightily at the time.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 02:10:53 PM
There's nothing like an extended and at times contentious collaboration to change a friendship. I respected Barry's work more than ever, but at the time I told him bluntly that I wasn't sure I had the patience to work together again.  We remained in touch, though, and as he began completing tracks toward what would eventually become Smile on the Void, my enthusiasm for the beauty and sensitivity of his musical output overcame my reservations about the difficulty  we'd experienced working together.

I don't think I contributed musically to SOTV (though I sent Barry a few drones and textures he said he considered using, I don't believe any of them made it into the finished product) but we discussed releasing it on Hypnos. At that time, the work and expense involved in running a proper label, with CD manufacturing and packaging and artwork, had begun to Barry to seem not worth it any more. Those of you who have followed Hypnos for any length of time will certainly have noticed that our releases stick to a sort of visual template. This is intentional, an effort to create a visual identity for the label, something to bind all the releases together. Barry had a number of requests as to layout, type, artwork, packaging and so on, and I had to insist over and over that we couldn't diverge from the Hypnos template to the degree he was requesting. Once I make an exception like that for one artist, then the next guy wants a 16 page booklet, and the guy after that wants a white border instead of black, and a different font and eventually your label's visual identity is gone.

We briefly discussed letting Barry just release this himself, and I'd try to help him with distribution and other support, but eventually we agreed to a co-release between Trance Port and Hypnos. This allowed a different approach with regard to various elements in variance from the usual Hypnos template.

That's not to say everything everything went smoothly. The average Hypnos CD package design might go through 4 or 6 or 8 revisions before we get the artwork and the text all worked-out, proofed and dialed-in to everyone's satisfaction. The design process for SOTV took several months, perhaps 30-40 revisions. But when it was done, Smile on the Void was a beautiful package and a wonderful recording.

The title is taken from an obscure science fiction paperback novel by Stuart Gordon, who went on to direct such cult horror films as Reanimator and From Beyond. Several times I asked Barry about the significance of this title, and I never received much of an answer. He sent me a copy of the book, and though I love science fiction and weird metaphysical literature, I still didn't quite get it. In the end I decided Barry took the title at face value, and that it might simply be about maintaining a positive attitude in the face of an indifferent or hostile universe.

(http://www.hypnos.com/catalog/hypnos-ap-sotv.jpg)

Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: jeff pearce on September 05, 2011, 02:15:22 PM
what sad news.  :(  Barry was a friend from way back- I remember a lot of our phone conversations about music and life.  He had an effortless way of entering that "creative space"- and when he went there, he brought some fantastic music back with him. 
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 02:16:55 PM
Jeff, you and Barry were two of my first friends in this realm of music. It's hard not to rush backward through all those mid-90s memories at this news.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: richardgurtler on September 05, 2011, 02:19:47 PM
This is absolutely terrible and unexpected news, Barry will be deeply missed by his family, friends and our ambient community. We are losing talented and unique artist. I never met Barry personally, but I will always remember our pen-pal friendship and his music will always live in my heart!!! I own A Produce's complete discography, with some of them featuring Barry's personalized signature and all these CDs will be deeply treasured for me. Goodbye, Barry!!! My condolences to his family and friends.

Richard
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 02:21:23 PM
Thanks for the note, Richard.

Barry had many people who supported his work, and it's very nice to hear from those of you who will remember him.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 02:36:05 PM
As I progress through this chronological revisiting of my relationship with Barry aka A Produce, I come to a gap of almost ten years. During that time (approximately 2001-2011) we maintained some contact, but Barry was much less active making music. He experienced some personal setbacks, including the loss of at least two "day jobs," and a couple of long stretches of unemployment. This, combined with a general downturn in the market for recorded music, meant that as Trance Port albums went out of print (the EP of A Smooth Surface and the album Land of a Thousand Trances), even an artist of the stature of A Produce could not justify manufacturing new batches of CDs. At this time, Barry chose to put his Trance Port label on hold, and create a new offshoot Trance Port Special Editions, to create CDR reissues of his out-of-print albums, as well as to release a few new recordings.

He put out a special expanded edition of A Smooth Surface, a collection of early recordings from the A Produce & Ruben Garcia partnership, and a double CDR edition of Land of a Thousand Trances. These sold moderately well, because of the respect listeners held for the work of A Produce, but not so well as to convince Barry to make the jump to restarting the Trance Port label proper.

When White Sands (a sampler or assortment of A Produce tracks, both album takes and obscurities) went out of print, though, Barry decided to create a release more in keeping with the earlier Trance Port tradition of fine packaging. He released a 3-CD album, Black Sands, which had the feel of his early letterpress folder editions. It was a bit more expensive than the CDR editions but devoted A Produce listeners seemed to like it. I believe Black Sands came out in 2005 or maybe 2006.

(http://www.hypnos.com/catalog/aproduce-blacksands.jpg)

Overall, sales of A Produce CDs had begun to drop off. Newer ambient music fans hadn't seen an album of new A Produce material come out, and earlier fans already owned all his work. Only the most devoted fans wanted to re-purchase a CDR deluxe edition of an album they already owned on CD, despite the inclusion of a few extra tracks. At the same time, a lot of respect still existed for the music of A Produce, especially among more serious, long-term fans and practitioners of the music, DJs and music reviewers.

I told Barry he needed to keep putting out new music every few years at least, and not just perpetually repackage earlier releases, in order to keep stimulating interest in his work. He often hinted at an interest in getting back into the studio, or mentioned having sold a few pieces of studio gear to finance the purchase of some new synthesizer, but several years passed in which I don't believe he was creating new music at all.

His next release after Black Sands went in the opposite direction. The Clearing was a reissue of the very earliest A Produce material from the late 80s. The music hinted at where he would go with A Produce eventually, but wasn't going to earn him any new fans. Also the release came in a no-frills CDR package.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Scott Raymond on September 05, 2011, 02:39:35 PM
Sad, sad news indeed. I remember his releases from the early days of Trance Port and loved the music and the packaging. I didn't know him, but emailed back and forth a time or two. A nice guy and a great talent. Take care, Barry.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Paul Vnuk (Ma Ja Le) on September 05, 2011, 02:39:59 PM
Wow, sad news indeed!!! Our community is so small, this is most definitely like losing a family member! I remember talking to him once on the phone years ago when I was just starting to do my own music. He sent me copies of his first few CDs and we spoke via e-mail as well, but it has been at least 10 year since I last came in contact with him.

Very sad! Prayers go out to his family.

Paul
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 02:42:19 PM
Thanks for commenting, Scott.

I've always believed that no matter how the ambient music community in general might rate its artists, if you asked the long-term DJs, reviewers, music-makers, and the most seriously devoted listeners, A Produce would stand in the very top rank of five or six names.

Because he was less prolific than names like Roach, Rich, Vidna Obmana and others, he had a lower profile with the general listening public than he deserved. But those who know ambient music, space music, or trance music, all have respect for the work of A Produce.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 02:43:22 PM
Hi Paul
Thanks for chiming in. Your experience with getting to know Barry, exchanging music with him and so on, sounds similar to what many of the rest of us experienced.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Numina on September 05, 2011, 02:54:15 PM
 :'(

Yes, very sad news and so sudden.  I will miss Barry and his music, but we do have his music now to listen to in his memory.

A few years ago I arranged for a dinner gathering in L.A. with Barry, along with Loren Nerell, Dean De Benedictis, and "surprise guest" Kelly David (a surprise to me that evening). Barry and his wife sat across from me during our dinner and while our visit was short, I got to know a kind soul - as was everyone there that evening.  I have fond memories of that night and I am thankful to have spent some time chatting with Barry.

Over the years Barry and I kept in semi-regular contact (mostly on FaceBook).  He was very generous with sharing his music with me, and I have some music material meant for a collaboration piece that I hope to release in the future in his memory.

R.I.P. Barry.  You will be missed.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Anodize DB on September 05, 2011, 03:00:59 PM
WTF?!? Had to do a double-take when I first came across the subject heading of this post. Man, this past year or two has seen some truly sad & shocking & *very* untimely passings in the EM/experimental realm: Dani Long from Celer last year, Conrad Schnitzler recently, and now Barry. I am quite stunned & saddened to hear this news.

I knew Barry sporadically during the publishing years of i/e, back in the early 90s. In fact, we had run an interview with him for the "fourth world" special issue which included Hassell, Roach, Rich, et al. I have loved & admired Barry's work from the beginning, and closely followed his career right up to the recent collab w/Loren, which was superb. Barry's skill & abilities as an artist were unquestionable, and the presentation of his Trance Port CDs then (and now) has held them in fine artistic stead all these years. He should have garnered a far larger audience than he did, one his reputation deserved, but, alas, such is the nature of many a musician in this small corner of the universe.

He will be missed.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 03:02:11 PM
Thanks for the reminiscence, Jesse and Darren. It seems so many of us have similar stories.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 03:02:49 PM
After that decade-long gap I mentioned, in which I communicated with Barry intermittently, and tried to help him sell his self-released editions through the Hypnos store, he started making music again. I heard from Barry about a nascent collaboration with Loren Nerell. Over several months, I heard a sample track here and there, then indications that the collaboration was dead, then more tracks, then more indications that it might not happen after all.

Eventually I received a sampler of four or five tracks of some of the best new ambient music I'd heard in quite a while. I don't know the practical details of the collaboration, but the pairing seemed to bring out the best in both A Produce and Loren Nerell. Their combined output had a brooding, melancholy undercurrent, but felt bright and celestial at the same time. The music sounded deep, and yet pleasant, easy to listen to. In the past I've received "teasers" for unfinished projects that never ended up sounding as good as the first hints, but everything these guys came up with was top notch.

Apparently the project hit a number of bumps along the way, such as differing creative ideas, or difficulties finding time to work together, but these are common in any collaboration and certainly didn't detract from the quality of the material. Neither artist had released new material of their own in several years, yet somehow they had combined to create some of the freshest and most vital work we'd heard here at Hypnos in quite some time.

(http://www.hypnos.com/catalog/hypnos-apln-i.jpg)

We cleared the remaining hurdles inherent to any CD release -- artwork, liner notes, terms and conditions, and so on -- and Intangible was finally released. It's the most recent release on Hypnos as I write this, and though I don't like to play favorites among Hypnos releases I think it's fair to say that this is one of our better-received albums ever. It has been a lot of fun to share radio playlists and reviews of the CD with Barry and Loren, and I know the response to Intangible was encouraging and energizing for both of them.

There is no question that Barry had more great music in him, if only he had more time. I regret we'll never get to hear more of what he had to offer.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: hdibrell on September 05, 2011, 03:06:19 PM
This is very sad news. I never new or talked to Barry, but did enjoy his music. I agree with Mike that he will be remembered in the top ranks of ambient artists. His latest with Loren was very encouraging to me that he was back in full force again. I am enjoying reading the stories you all tell of him. He will be missed.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 03:28:16 PM
Sad indeed. Thanks for adding your voice to those who enjoyed Barry's work.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 03:43:50 PM
Revisiting all these memories has left me feeling a bit wrung out, so I'm going to take a break from thinking about this for a while. I invite people to post their feelings about A Produce music, and/or recollections about Barry personally.

Several of us reading and posting in this space knew different aspects of Barry and A Produce, so if anybody has questions, feel free to post those and we'll try to answer.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Bill Binkelman on September 05, 2011, 04:00:51 PM
I've already written some responses on Facebook, but I must say this is terribly sad news for me. Barry and I got to know each other quite well over MANY long distance phone calls shortly after I started up Wind and Wire in 1997. Barry was extremely supportive (as were you, Mike, and Jeff, too). I remember Barry telling me "It's easy, Bill, for someone to publish one or two issues...but if you can make it to 6 or 8 or 10, THEN people will start taking you seriously." His passion for music was just as engaging and contagious. The first album of his I got was Land of a Thousand Trances and MANY times I have stated that it is as essential an album as exists in ambient music. I think it was Jeff who put I and Barry in contact at first. If so, thanks, Jeff.  I interviewed Barry for issue 4 and, if Mike approves, I can find the interview and maybe post it here somehow. And yes, Mike, the photo was the cover image I used for that issue. As important and visionary as Barry was as an artist, he was also one of the nicest people in this business. That he helped me, who was a total unknown and a naive babe in the woods at the time, was a testament to his generous spirit. He had a great sense of humor and was a genuinely kind person. The world at large has lost a wonderful human being and the ambient community has lost one of it's pioneers and artistic geniuses (IMO, Barry was a real original). Safe passage to the next level, Barry. We will all miss you something fierce.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 04:08:08 PM
Bill, thanks for the reminiscences. Anything you'd like to scan and post, or email for me to post, would be great.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Chad Hoefler on September 05, 2011, 04:36:55 PM
Smile on the Void was one of a few CDs that inspired me to begin recording.  I am grateful that Barry was able to share his gift with the world.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: jeff pearce on September 05, 2011, 04:38:54 PM
Bill- I think I did point Barry in your direction, long long ago.  And Mike- you wrote Barry around the time you wrote to me- Barry and I talked shortly after, and he asked me "what's up with this Hypnos label?" and I said that it was run by a pretty level headed, ego-free guy who appeared to be in it for the long term.  I remember Barry stating, dryly, "then he'll never last in the music business!"  :)  I talked with Barry not terribly long ago, he was pretty excited about the (then) unreleased cd with Loren, but spent a lot of time asking about my wife and kids, wondering how it was possible that I was now the parent of a teen-ager.  I always appreciated how Barry was interested in, and willing to talk about, things other than music.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Bill Binkelman on September 05, 2011, 04:57:36 PM
Bill- I think I did point Barry in your direction, long long ago.  And Mike- you wrote Barry around the time you wrote to me- Barry and I talked shortly after, and he asked me "what's up with this Hypnos label?" and I said that it was run by a pretty level headed, ego-free guy who appeared to be in it for the long term.  I remember Barry stating, dryly, "then he'll never last in the music business!"  :) I talked with Barry not terribly long ago, he was pretty excited about the (then) unreleased cd with Loren, but spent a lot of time asking about my wife and kids, wondering how it was possible that I was now the parent of a teen-ager.  I always appreciated how Barry was interested in, and willing to talk about, things other than music.

LOL! That does indeed sound like Barry! He had such a wickedly dry sense of humor. And yeah, he and I bemoaned the lack of serious attention ambient music got and how screwed up some things were. I thought I had found a real soulmate when it came to ranting at times! LOL! Yeah, I remember, Jeff, that I got in touch with you prior to my W and W days...I think you and Tim (Story) were the first artists I ever showed my "fan boy" side to back then. At some point Barry emailed me as a "Jeff Pearce" referral, I think...or maybe you told me about this great artist A Produce. I don't recall if I bought Land of a Thousand Trances from Lloyd or from Stu at Dark Star in Milwaukee. I think it was Lloyd (and I bought The Hidden Rift at Stu's store on Milwaukee's East Side. Man, the past we all shared. I so wish we could all be together tonight to raise a glass to Barry, a la the ending scene in Waking Ned Devine....(sigh).
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 05:32:16 PM
Barry had moved away from music for quite a few years, and recently seemed to have found his inspiration and love for creating again. I'll always remember that 1996-2001 Barry who was full of energy and enthusiasm, and very generous about bringing people together around music, and supporting the work of others.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 05:37:23 PM
Also -- Bill, Jeff and the rest of you -- I want to thank people for sharing thoughts and memories about Barry here. I didn't want to turn this into nothing but "Mike remembers Barry," but pretty much all I have to go on is my own recollections about getting to know him, receiving recommendations from him, working on music with him and so on. I welcome others to fill in other parts of Barry's history, and let us know about projects and work that I didn't touch on.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: drone on on September 05, 2011, 05:43:04 PM
I think I had the same reaction that Darren Bergstein had.  This is very shocking and unexpected news, and a great loss in the ambient music field.  My first exposure to Barry's music was in 1994, thanks to Robert Morris, a really enthusiastic ambient fan who ran a small mail-order business called "Dangerous Dharma"  in the Bay Area.  I think "A Smooth Surface" and "Land of a Thousand Trances" were some of my first CD purchases from RM.  Backroads also supplied A Produce stuff I bought later.  I remember the article on A Produce in I.E.  Those were the days, pre-Internet, when everything was by word of mouth, 'zines, telephone, and the dinosaur now known as the record store.  I loved the detailed liner notes in the TrancePort releases as far as instrumentation and the Eno-esque descriptions of instruments/sounds.  It was obvious Barry's music was influenced heavily by Budd and Eno, not just in style but also in the process of making music, a kind of "emotional intellectualism", if you will.  His music always had a very mysterious quality to it that was unique and unlike a lot of his contemporaries.

My condolences to his family, friends, and fellow musicians who knew him.         
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Mark Mushet on September 05, 2011, 05:44:40 PM

Those of you who have followed Hypnos for any length of time will certainly have noticed that our releases stick to a sort of visual template. This is intentional, an effort to create a visual identity for the label, something to bind all the releases together. Barry had a number of requests as to layout, type, artwork, packaging and so on, and I had to insist over and over that we couldn't diverge from the Hypnos template to the degree he was requesting. Once I make an exception like that for one artist, then the next guy wants a 16 page booklet, and the guy after that wants a white border instead of black, and a different font and eventually your label's visual identity is gone.

That's not to say everything everything went smoothly. The average Hypnos CD package design might go through 4 or 6 or 8 revisions before we get the artwork and the text all worked-out, proofed and dialed-in to everyone's satisfaction. The design process for SOTV took several months, perhaps 30-40 revisions. But when it was done, Smile on the Void was a beautiful package and a wonderful recording.

(http://www.hypnos.com/catalog/hypnos-ap-sotv.jpg)

Thanks for the back story to that, Mike. I do recall one or two testy moments with regard to orientation of my photos for the package. Barry flipped on me a bit for not wanting the images flipped! But it was a minor glitch and all is, as you suggest, worth it in the end.

I knew Barry from the 80s when he sent cassettes to me for a radio show at UBC.
Barry was very generous and kind and I was happy to see him more recently in fighting spirit on Facebook and taking a keen interest in all things LA.

One of his FB posts a few months back was a news clip about prostate cancer and there was a small hint that it was now of concern to him as well. Not sure how/if that became a bigger issue in light of this news.

Anyway, as we all know, the music is still with us....as is that great pic of Barry from years ago with the shades, in the car, in the desert...some kind of great Antonioni outtake!
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Mark Mushet on September 05, 2011, 05:55:20 PM
From Barry's FB page. Taken in 1980 in the desert. Love this shot of him!
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 06:08:01 PM
I think I had the same reaction that Darren Bergstein had.  This is very shocking and unexpected news, and a great loss in the ambient music field.  My first exposure to Barry's music was in 1994, thanks to Robert Morris, a really enthusiastic ambient fan who ran a small mail-order business called "Dangerous Dharma"  in the Bay Area.  I think "A Smooth Surface" and "Land of a Thousand Trances" were some of my first CD purchases from RM.  Backroads also supplied A Produce stuff I bought later.  I remember the article on A Produce in I.E.  Those were the days, pre-Internet, when everything was by word of mouth, 'zines, telephone, and the dinosaur now known as the record store.  I loved the detailed liner notes in the TrancePort releases as far as instrumentation and the Eno-esque descriptions of instruments/sounds.  It was obvious Barry's music was influenced heavily by Budd and Eno, not just in style but also in the process of making music, a kind of "emotional intellectualism", if you will.  His music always had a very mysterious quality to it that was unique and unlike a lot of his contemporaries.

My condolences to his family, friends, and fellow musicians who knew him.       


Drone On, thanks for the memories. It's nice to hear how people discovered this work back in those days. I remember reading and re-reading magazines, looking for sounds that might be of interest.

You're definitely right on about the Budd and Eno influences. Barry would not have denied their impact on his work, in fact he talked a lot about Eno's approach to recording, including the incorporation of "happy accidents" in the creative process, and often referred to Ruben Garcia as "his" Harold Budd.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 06:10:31 PM
Mark, those old pictures of Barry on Facebook certainly surprised me when I first saw them. He was one of those people with no qualms about putting 20-30 year old pix up on social media sites. I heard at least a couple of people guess he was much younger based on these old photos.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 06:32:36 PM
I've just posted the information to the ambient music, space music, and ambientway mailing lists.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Bill Binkelman on September 05, 2011, 06:46:24 PM
Mike, I will try to scan the interview either tonight or tomorrow. Here is the cover (boy, does this take me back, as I 'm sure it will other of us "old timers"):

(http://i94.photobucket.com/albums/l92/billbink/AProduce.jpg)
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Mark Mushet on September 05, 2011, 06:50:09 PM
Mark, those old pictures of Barry on Facebook certainly surprised me when I first saw them. He was one of those people with no qualms about putting 20-30 year old pix up on social media sites. I heard at least a couple of people guess he was much younger based on these old photos.

Don't most people do that? He had a mix of photos and was always clear when they were from. I think he did lack a nice, more recent portrait though. That's common too.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 06:52:50 PM
I doubt Barry was trying to deceive people. In fact he pretty much still looked like he did in those mid-90s pictures. The shaved head helps a guy look much the same at 40, 50 and 60 I think.

But I do think at least a small number of people guessed he was 25-35 due to the prominence of those pix on his Facebook profile.

Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 06:53:28 PM
Mike, I will try to scan the interview either tonight or tomorrow. Here is the cover (boy, does this take me back, as I 'm sure it will other of us "old timers"):


Bill, that's great, and I remember it well. Thanks for sharing it.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: ffcal on September 05, 2011, 07:14:12 PM
I'm very surprised and saddened to here this.  I first became familiar with Barry's music in the 80s when he released a series of cassette compilations (LA Mantra, La Mantra 2 and Phantom Tracks) on his Trance Port label.  Very beautiful and creative graphics and packaging that reminded of Bruce Licher's work with the Independent Project label.  My favorite solo work of his is Smile on The Void, though his recent collaboration with Loren has become one of my quick favorites.  My thoughts and prayers go to his family.

Forrest
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 07:23:10 PM
Thanks for chiming in, Forrest. Even I don't go back as far as the cassette days! As much as things are different now from the mid-late 90s, things were yet another version of "differentness" in the days of cassettes.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Bill Binkelman on September 05, 2011, 07:32:28 PM
Mike, I have the interview scanned as a two-page PDF. Should I email it to you? What email address? mg (at) hypnos (dot) com?

(edited by Mike to remove my spam-crawler-readable email address)
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Dave Michuda on September 05, 2011, 07:34:34 PM
After listening to some A Produce music recently, I remember thinking how much I liked many of the tracks because they were actual songs, not just more ambient drones.  These tunes went somewhere & held together for the whole track.

I agree with Forrest, my fav solo record is probably Smile on a Void.  But without a doubt my favorite individual track is A Smooth Surface.  I think that cut would be in my top ten all favorite ambient tracks.  It's going to get some extra airtime over the next few days.

Thanks, Barry, for all your great music.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 07:35:28 PM
Mike, I have the interview scanned as a two-page PDF. Should I email it to you? What email address? mg (at) hypnos.com?

Yes, Bill -- I'll put it up tomorrow.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 05, 2011, 07:39:35 PM
After listening to some A Produce music recently, I remember thinking how much I liked many of the tracks because they were actual songs, not just more ambient drones.  These tunes went somewhere & held together for the whole track.

I agree with Forrest, my fav solo record is probably Smile on a Void.  But without a doubt my favorite individual track is A Smooth Surface.  I think that cut would be in my top ten all favorite ambient tracks.  It's going to get some extra airtime over the next few days.

Thanks, Barry, for all your great music.

Thanks for the comments, Dave.

Barry taught me a bit about the relative values of minimalism versus musicality -- if not outright melody then at least structure. He wasn't the only ambient musician to come at it from a more traditionally musical perspective rather than the more abstract, painterly approach of someone like me, but maybe he influenced me more that way because we talked so many times about the different qualities of ambient music as we worked Altara back and forth over many months.

I always come back to A Smooth Surface, and in fact when we began Altara and he expressed reservations about making it too minimal or atmospheric, I used A Smooth Surface as a referent for the kind of simplicity he might bear in mind for our project.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Gurdonark on September 05, 2011, 08:54:01 PM
I'm sorry to hear of his passing.  It's sad that he passed away so young. He created a body of music, and I hope it will help his memory live on.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: judd stephens on September 05, 2011, 09:46:52 PM
Barry's Inscape and Landscape was possibly the very first cd I purchased from the Hypnos store, back in late 2001 I vaguely remember.  What led me to it was the track featured on the comp. Slumberland, called "The Golden Needle". I'm not sure if Barry's credited for the guitar heavily prominent in the track, but the fact that he made it happen says a lot.   It still stands as one of the finest ambient tunes I've heard ever:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EC7GFQgXgHE

And it's easily to agree with what's already been said earlier.  Besides his tribal side which was quite good, he played a nice mysterious minimalism that served him well.  If there is such a thing as dramatic minimalism, he pulled it off at times.  Early Sessions with Ruben Garcia is simply two great talents putting their best together to create something special.   As a senseless side note, I was playing a lot of Devil May Cry around the same time as heavily listening to the Early Sessions, and there were a couple of tracks that captured the same sort of gothic, quiet but powerful mystique.  It kind of reminded me of the story and ambience of the game every time I would hear them.  I'm sure there are others who have an "ambient experience" where you tend to relive even if it's a few seconds of a track, something within the music that sort of lingers throughout your day. 

It is sad to see someone whose work was so respected and poised to make a grand comeback in the ambient music field have it cut short.   
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: nevdorrington on September 05, 2011, 10:25:50 PM
I remember playing a wad of his music on Ultima Thule - all very joyfull and upbeat electronica. very sad another talented artist has gone to the stars.

nev
www.ultimathule.info
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: electroambientspace on September 05, 2011, 10:41:29 PM
A Produce & Loren Nerell
“Intangible”
(www.hypnos.com, 2011)

NOTE: This review was written on Monday, September 5, 2011 – the day that Barry Craig (A Produce) died unexpectedly at the age of 59. This review is dedicated to Barry and to the musical legacy he leaves behind.

Though A Produce and Loren Nerell have been composing ambient music for years, Intangible is their first collaborative effort. A gentle, bubbly sequence lightly introduces the title track, a superb number that pulls us right in with its silky blend of soothing sounds.  It is deceptively simple and eminently listenable. “Planet Atmo” is a more free-floating affair, lighter than air with a gently pulsating undercurrent. Light and dark elements play off each other perfectly. It has distinctly organic and synthetic components to it, a subtle, sublime piece of music. “String Theory” takes things in another direction, with a strong rhythmic, world music feel it, a well-placed change of pace.  “Area 51.1” pulls us back firmly into the ambient realm, though a few soft beats remain. The lead sound here is captivating, perhaps a processed sample from a didgeridoo or a drum of some type. “Lost in Transformation” is the darkest, most adventurous piece, churning and gurgling from otherworldly primordial origins. Soft rhythm returns on “Meadow Dust”, courtesy of a djembe or bongo drum, imbued with warm pads and gentle drones. “Pot Covers at Dawn” brings the album to a dreamy, atmospheric close. Each track excels at defining a theme then subtly exploring its nuances without pomp or circumstance. Intangible is a highly cohesive and satisfying listen; a worthy addition to Loren Nerell’s canon, and a fitting finale to the work of A Produce.

©2011 Phil Derby / Electroambient Space
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Seren on September 06, 2011, 12:03:36 AM
Very sad news indeed. Intagible recently popped through my door and is the next in line for me to listen to - I will do so with different ears.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 06, 2011, 06:00:31 AM
Thanks for the overnight comments, everybody. I'm sure many people are just discovering A Produce for the first time due to the release of Intangible and all the positive reviews so far, or at least rediscovering an artist they hadn't listened to as much in the past five or more years.

Phil, thanks for that review. We'll get it posted to the main Hypnos site and online store later today.

Judd, Golden Needle is a track a lot of people used to talk about as a favorite or at least memorable. I'm pretty sure the prominent guitar on that track is by Scott Fraser, a friend of Barry's who contributed performances to several A Produce tracks over the years.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Scott M2 on September 06, 2011, 08:02:15 AM
Hi Mike - I'm sorry to hear about the passing of your friend. 
Like many others, I will surely be playing his lovely music this week.
I also have a couple of the early letterpress editions and will start there,
ending with Intangible.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: terraamb01 on September 06, 2011, 08:21:57 AM
Terrible news. I've been Listening to Barry's work for years. So sad when one of our own passes suddenly. His legacy will live on in his music truly.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 06, 2011, 08:26:07 AM
Thanks for your comments, Scott and Jeff.

Bill Binkelman was good enough to send a scan of his Wind and Wire interview with Barry (see yesterday's post of the cover of that issue), a PDF which I've hosted on the Hypnos server. I think for many people around the time I was getting Hypnos rolling, this was their introduction to an important ambient/trance artist.

Feel free to read, download, redistribute.

http://www.hypnos.com/aproduce-interview.pdf (http://www.hypnos.com/aproduce-interview.pdf)
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: phrozenlight on September 06, 2011, 10:23:01 AM
sorry to hear

RIP Barry
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Seren on September 06, 2011, 10:55:22 AM
...and thank you Mike for sharing such an intimate tribute, it has enabled a rarley seen window in music to see the man behind the music.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Bert/SonicImmersion.org on September 06, 2011, 12:04:48 PM
Like many on this forum, I'm very sad due to the news on the passing of Barry;

I learned to know his music through Bill's just started W & W magazine and soon after that got and stayed in touch with him on a regular basis; I also introduced his great ambient music over here in The Netherlands through reviews in KLEM Dutch EM fanzine;
like several on gthe forum I got the letter-boxed cds he privately released from the beginning, and I was also very surprised by the nice outcome of the collaborations with Ruben Garcia, to whom he introduced me very kindly....
Barry, many thanks for being there.


Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 06, 2011, 12:39:25 PM
Thanks very much for the continuing comments, everybody.

I know that at times like these it can be difficult to figure out what to say, especially when others have already made comments or offered tributes, and we're afraid that what we might have to add has already been said. But I think there's value in just adding another voice to the list of those who say we respected Barry's work, and will miss him.

Loren said on Facebook earlier today that he'll make sure Barry's family is aware of this forum topic, so if you have comments, tributes, condolences or memories, this is the place to post them.

This morning I've been sorting through various photos and scans of Barry and his work, including a few landscape photos he sent me. I'll start posting some of those soon.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 06, 2011, 01:27:42 PM
When I first got to know Barry, he wanted my help setting up a web site. It wasn't something he expected to update frequently, in fact that site remains online pretty much as it was originally designed, here:

http://www.hypnos.com/aproduce (http://www.hypnos.com/aproduce)

Some of that content was split off to create a separate site for his Trance Port label -- http://www.hypnos.com/tranceport (http://www.hypnos.com/tranceport) -- mostly to give people a place to see the various CDs released by Trance Port and later Trance Port Special Editions, and to print out a mail order form to send in with a check. Most recently, most Trance Port and TPSE discs were being sold through the Hypnos store and through CD Baby, so I don't think many people were mailing in checks any more.

Most of the photos he sent me were not images of himself, or his albums or CDs, but simply nature photographs he'd taken himself. Some of these figure into album covers or interiors over the years, often in altered form. Barry  took these images as an enthusiastic amateur, and didn't pretend to be a professional-level photographer, but these images demonstrate a good eye for form and texture.

To view a high-resolution version of an image, click on the file-name just ABOVE the image.

http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-desert.jpg (http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-desert.jpg)
(http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-desert-.jpg)

http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-dunes.jpg (http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-dunes.jpg)
(http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-dunes-.jpg)

http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-leaves.jpg (http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-leaves.jpg)
(http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-leaves-.jpg)

http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-lilies.jpg (http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-lilies.jpg)
(http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-lilies-.jpg)

http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-oceanbrite.jpg (http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-oceanbrite.jpg)
(http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-oceanbrite-.jpg)

http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-oceanfoam.jpg (http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-oceanfoam.jpg)
(http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-oceanfoam-.jpg)

http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-oceanset.jpg (http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-oceanset.jpg)
(http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-oceanset-.jpg)

http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-plant.jpg (http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-plant.jpg)
(http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-plant-.jpg)

http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-sanddune.jpg (http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-sanddune.jpg)
(http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-sanddune-.jpg)

http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-sandstone.jpg (http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-sandstone.jpg)
(http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-sandstone-.jpg)

http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-tidalpool.jpg (http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-tidalpool.jpg)
(http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-tidalpool-.jpg)

http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-trees.jpg (http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-trees.jpg)
(http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-trees-.jpg)

http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-trees2.jpg (http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-trees.jpg)
(http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/ap-trees2-.jpg)
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Scott Fraser on September 06, 2011, 02:40:19 PM
Golden Needle is a track a lot of people used to talk about as a favorite or at least memorable. I'm pretty sure the prominent guitar on that track is by Scott Fraser, a friend of Barry's who contributed performances to several A Produce tracks over the years.

Hi Mike, & everybody else here who knew Barry & loved his music,

Yes, that was me on the guitar solo on "Golden Needle", a high point of our collaborations & a personal favorite of both of us.
Thanks to all for the many kind words on Barry's behalf. Barry was a close friend, neighbor, collaborator, & fellow traveler of mine for the last 30-some years. I'll add my thoughts here soon, but I'm still a bit too shaken & stunned to be able to compose any coherent ideas at the moment. 
Shine on, you droney diamond...

Scott Fraser
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 06, 2011, 02:59:50 PM
Scott, thanks for contributing here. Barry mentioned your work to me many times -- just one example of Barry's relentless efforts to help spread the word about work he enjoyed and believed in.

Anything else you feel able to add, I'm sure people would appreciate from someone who knew him well before the rest of us.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Resonant Drift on September 06, 2011, 02:59:51 PM
I'm so sorry for his family and friends.  They will be in my thoughts and prayers (really).
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 06, 2011, 03:32:30 PM
As I mentioned before, I don't have a lot of images of Barry himself. He had a couple of photos he used for promotional stuff such as interviews, primarily the one we've already seen from the cover of Wind and Wire, where he's holding a frame drum or the world's biggest tambourine.

These are the only other two I've been able to find so far.

The first is of not-so-great quality, but it was the first time I saw him with hair. Those of you who knew him back in the cassette days of Trance Port may recognize this. I believe it's a scan from a newspaper or magazine article or interview that came out before I knew Barry.

The second was originally going to be the cover of Black Sands, and even has the artist/title text for mockup purposes. Obviously Barry changed his mind about putting the famous bald pate and sunglasses on the album cover.

As before, to view a high-resolution version of an image, click on the file-name just ABOVE the image.

http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/barry.jpg (http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/barry.jpg)
(http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/barry-.jpg)

http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/blacksands-alt.jpg (http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/blacksands-alt.jpg)
(http://www.hypnos.com/forumpix/blacksands-alt-.jpg)
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Scott Fraser on September 06, 2011, 03:46:32 PM
I'm so sorry for his family and friends.  They will be in my thoughts and prayers (really).

Please send an extra bit of healing energy to Barry's widow. She's in a particularly bad way right now.

Scott Fraser
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 06, 2011, 04:47:40 PM
This must be harder for Barry's wife than for anyone else. I'm sure we all wish her the best during this terribly difficult time.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: SmiteMatter on September 06, 2011, 05:13:43 PM
I've enjoyed his music for years, and though I never met him, he was very close to a good friend of mine. This is a staggering loss.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Dean De Benedictis on September 06, 2011, 06:14:53 PM
I'm starting to get pretty heavy realizing everything that has now died with Barry, and I can't seem to hold it all back: ideas he had, plans we made and conversations we never finished... He was not the most enthusiastic guy in the end, but he was still funny, and passionate, and most importantly he was always a pessimist who let his music do the talking about hope and purity.  Until now, I've never had such a close friend in music die on me.  It's a first, and it feels different--in a bad way.

We had talked about it, and it was hard enough for us both to imagine that there was actually a creator behind the beauty of our music, and that it happened to actually come from a human being who was right next to us, and whom we knew personally.  Now the creator of his music is going to seem that much more unattainable to me.  The actual man, and friend, is gone, and he was brilliant.

It didn't matter how pessimistic he got in person, there were music pieces he made that spoke volumes about the sentimental and emotional depth of the human heart, as well as the mystery of all existence.  It was all in there.  And I feel lucky that mine was revealed to him as well.  Too often, that part of our music seems hidden to others, while it screams plain-as-day to ourselves.  I shared this with Barry.  No longer will I have long, regular listening sessions with one of the only other people I know of who really understood the power and texture of musical emotion when presented from a setting of utter tranquility. 

No longer will I be able to work with him, and we had just started collaborating again after a pause of about 15 years. 

Barry was also a huge fan of the desert, most notably with a passion for White Sands National Monument.  Well, I was really really looking forward to the day when I wandered back into his front door and showed him a well-edited video of me collaborating on an ambient music track with him, but while at White Sands National Monument.  I was going to finish a piece of ours while there, and then show it to him, and he was going to see a grin on my face a mile long.  A "Smile On The Void" to put it bluntly.

I suddenly feel like that much more of a stranger to this world.  Maybe it will go away.  That's the only down side of death--leaving those few people behind who are the only ones that remember you and appreciate your essence.  Makes them want to die, too.  No one wants to carry that burden.  Now I wish the whole world shared my understanding and my memories of Barry.  I don't want to carry that by myself...

There are probably a few others in my life whom I will experience feeling this towards if/when they pass on before I do, so I suppose I should save some of my tears for them.  I don't know.

http://www.hypnos.com/aproduce/bio.htm (http://www.hypnos.com/aproduce/bio.htm)

http://www.hypnos.com/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=HOS&Product_Code=hyp3160 (http://www.hypnos.com/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=HOS&Product_Code=hyp3160)

http://www.google.com/search?q=white+sands&hl=en&client=safari&rls=en&prmd=ivnsm&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=Zr9mTsaCJKqzsALOvbWiCg&ved=0CF4QsAQ&biw=1186&bih=767 (http://www.google.com/search?q=white+sands&hl=en&client=safari&rls=en&prmd=ivnsm&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=Zr9mTsaCJKqzsALOvbWiCg&ved=0CF4QsAQ&biw=1186&bih=767)
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 06, 2011, 07:47:30 PM
Dean, thank you for sharing this very personal and heartfelt expression of what Barry has meant to you both personally and musically. You were among those few people I heard him mention again and again over the years, along with Scott Fraser, Chas Smith, Ruben Garcia and Pierre Lambow (who was already gone before I ever heard of A Produce). There were certainly others -- Barry really liked to extol the virtues of one friend to another -- but these were the names I heard most often in those early years.

I know it's hardest for those of you who knew Barry longer and spent more time with him (many of us knew him only online or over the phone), but we appreciate you giving us this glimpse of the Barry Craig you knew.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Vajragio on September 06, 2011, 09:11:48 PM
 :( Very sad news to hear. My heart goes out to his loved ones and may they find peace.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Campus Stellae on September 07, 2011, 05:07:16 AM
sad news really.
I can only remember my first contact with Barry more than 15 years ago, when he asked my help to locate an unreliable music distributor in southern Italy. This guy offered Barry to sell his cds in Italy and received hundreds of copies of his first two albums; needless to say that Barry never received a single cent from this gentleman! So I started my researches and found his telephone number: I've been so rude - which is really uncommon for me! - that I managed to get some money for Barry and, more important, all the remaining cds back. Then I sold them all for Barry and transfered the money to Barry's account.
Musically speaking, A Produce's music has a touch of mystery and compassion that always struck a chord deep inside my heart. I'll miss his art a lot.
Safe journey, Barry!
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: megbowles on September 07, 2011, 09:13:52 AM
Although I didn’t know Barry that well, we corresponded enough in the late ’90’s for me to feel that he was sort of a kindred spirit in his embracing of thinking outside the box - with regards to any sort of genre - in order for the music to keep thriving and growing.  I have such gratitude and admiration for that stance he took as an artist, and for the inspiration and courage that gave me to carry that forward in my own work. 

Bless you and thank you, Barry....wherever your spirit dwells, outside the box of our earth-bound reality.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: einstein36 on September 07, 2011, 11:36:32 AM
It is sad when a great fellow ambient musician among us departs this reality and leaves us with great music to remember him by..
I know when we lost Jim, I was torn up by his loss for a few days since we collabrated on albums together as, Orion's Belt.
But always know and feel that his music will always be with us...
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 07, 2011, 03:51:16 PM
The ongoing comments, both here and on Facebook, are a great tribute. Sorry I haven't commented as much today, but I'm a bit wiped out. Just wanted to say it's great to see Barry's listeners and fellow artists checking in.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Dean De Benedictis on September 07, 2011, 04:39:53 PM
Thank you, Mike.  I've been reading people's comments on here and I'm moved by what a lot of people have said and revealed.  Great stuff from people like Scott, Jeff, Bill and Meg.  Most importantly, I think what really moves me is that he had also come across as a good and supportive human being to the rest of the world, as well as to me.

Sometimes when we end up good friends with a cynic, it's hard to imagine that others might also be seeing the goodness of their essence deep down.  It's easy to think that you are one of the few who understand the person, while the rest of the world scoffs at him/her.  It's good to read here that people actually felt opposite of Barry.  And yes, he really was a truly good person.  I knew a few people in the past whom Barry had fallen out with, but I always knew that this was due to the chemistry-based nature of some relationships. Outside of that, Barry was a very excited, kind-hearted, supportive and generous individual, whether it seemed obvious or not.

Much like Scott might have, I have a lot more I would like to add here about Barry's artistic life in Los Angeles throughout the 90's and beyond.  There is truly a lot there to mention.  And besides, iit may help me to deal with the emotion of this a lot better if I share it with people who care.  This is the only place I can think of where people might actually appreciate knowing more about Barry.  I have tears in my eyes realizing that, but it seems to be the hard truth.

What Mike has shared here about his experiences working with, and knowing Barry, was very refreshing a revealing to me.  I'm glad he entered that much info here.  Less is not more when it comes to something important like his.  At the moment I am in the middle of a very involving project of my own; as soon as I get another window (maybe in a couple of days or maybe in a couple of weeks), I would like to come back here and post one huge entry myself, telling the story of Barry and his Los Angeles colleagues.  Again, it might be an extremely long one, so I'm just wondering if this really is the right place for it.  Mike: if you can let me know, or confirm that, it would be good.  And I've already begun writing it because it's pretty much therapy at this point.

Also, I believe I have lots of footage, locked away somewhere, of Barry and some of his performances at concerts we billed together in the past, as well as some other things that I may have waited far longer to get to if this hadn't happened.  Barry never asked for any of it, so I never bothered before.  I have to find the time to transfer most of it, but by announcing here that I'm in possession of it, I'm hoping to light a fire under my -ss a little better than usual.  Perhaps you can help me to keep that fire lit as well.

Be back here soon with more about the life of this amazing artist and friend.

And yes, please, as many prayers as possible in the direction of Barry's widow, Jane, who's strife I could'nt even begin to explainright now.  It goes even beyond Barry.

 
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Julio Di Benedetto on September 07, 2011, 04:45:04 PM
I read this sad news early this morning before heading out north up the coast of florida to chase the ocean swells from Hurricane Katia In hope of an epic surf session.  Intangible & Smile on the void played along the way......thank you Barry.  Smile on the void was one of my first Hypnos cd, perhaps the first and it has certainly stood the test of time.

I knew nothing about the man except for some of his music....so thank you to those close to him for sharing their personal experiences and my heart felt condolences to his family and friends.

"Smile on the Void"......that about says it all, doesn't it.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 07, 2011, 05:03:24 PM
... as soon as I get another window (maybe in a couple of days or maybe in a couple of weeks), I would like to come back here and post one huge entry myself, telling the story of Barry and his Los Angeles colleagues.  Again, it might be an extremely long one, so I'm just wondering if this really is the right place for it.  Mike: if you can let me know, or confirm that, it would be good.  And I've already begun writing it because it's pretty much therapy at this point.


Dean, thanks for your contributions. You're welcome to post as much as you like, though I'd suggest breaking it up into a series of shorter chunks, one message each. The message board has a limit to how much it will let you put in a single message, and it becomes hard to read in one enormous long stream anyway. If you post them sequentially I'm sure people will be able to follow along, and many of us would like to hear what you have to say.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Mike V. Bennett on September 07, 2011, 07:07:18 PM
May he swiftly travel through the Nightlands and with strength, walk, along the Path of Souls, to the Homeland.
   While I was not in touch with Produce for many years, I owe him many thanks for presenting the music of both Stillife (Michael Jon Fink and myself) and my solo works (M. leDonne-Bhennet), on the early releases from Traceport Tapes.  He was always pro composer, supportive of whatever we desired to release and a true advocate for music of the terrain.
   • What is life?  It is the flash of a firefly in the night.  It is the breath of a buffalo in the wintertime.  It is the little shadow, which runs across the grass and loses itself in the sunset.
   • When you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced.  Live your life so that when you die, the world cries and you rejoice.
~ Tslagi Expressions

Mike V. Bennett (aka) M. leDonne-Bhennet

Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Seren on September 07, 2011, 11:52:13 PM
I was listening to Intangible last night for the first time, it is a beautiful album.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Numina on September 08, 2011, 10:39:23 AM
I didn't see this posted here yet, a friend of Barry's posted this on his FaceBook page:

Barry Craig died of natural causes on 9/4/11 in Los Angeles, CA. He leaves behind his wife Jane, parents Jim and Doris, and sisters Cheryl and Laurie. Friends and followers are invited to leave words of remembrance about Barry on this Facebook page. Those wishing to express words to his family are invited to contact his sisters: Cheryl =cheryldparker@comcast.net or Laurie = hvn2fn@aol.com. Barry was a lover of music from an early age and went on to produce numerous CDs under the name “A Produce”. His most recent CD release in 2011 was INTANGIBLE, performed by A Produce & Loren Nerell. Barry’s musical works are available from www.hypnos.com/aproduce or www.cdbaby.com or www.amazon.com or by direct order from his private label TRANCE PORT at www.hypnos.com/aproduce/ordering.htm

Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Echoes on September 08, 2011, 12:32:23 PM
Thanks to all who let me know of Barry's passing.  I just posted a blog memorial with the script from his 1996 Echoes interview.  It's especially hard hearing about an artist's passing from the same generation that includes the Steve Roach, Robert Rich, Michael Stearns and Steve Tibbetts generation of musicians. http://wp.me/pgATL-1jW
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: drone on on September 08, 2011, 12:45:54 PM
I don't quite understand the "natural causes" part in the Facebook posting (?)...

PS:  Let's not forget two other greats who passed relatively recently: JORGE REYES and KLAUS WIESE.  There's a supergroup trio in heaven for you.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: chezvoz on September 08, 2011, 05:22:24 PM
I can’t adequately describe my feelings at Barry’s passing, but it is wonderful to hear from people who appreciated Barry’s music. He often seemed unaware that his work was so highly valued.

Barry’s solo records are well known to most of you here, but his musical exploits go back a bit farther.

Shortly before I met him in 1979, he was playing guitar in a band called The Blank Ensemble, fronted by the mysterious R Dash (mysterious to me, anyway, because in all this time I’ve never met him). It was Dash who gave him the name A Produce. I don’t think he ever played me any of their music so I can give no report on it, but R Dash made a big impression on him as he continued to talk about Dash as long as I knew him.

I met Barry when he answered my ad looking for others to form a band. Through some twists and turns, we formed Afterimage, with Barry on guitar, Rich Evac on bass. Holland de Nuzzio on drums and me on vocals. He was already using A Produce as his musical working name. He definitely poured his heart into the band as he financed the lion’s share of the records we released. Together we played around in the LA clubs for a couple of years and released a 2 slabs of vinyl and 2 cassettes before parting ways in 1981 or 82.

Almost immediately, Barry started Trance Port Tapes (which became just TrancePort later), compiling and releasing many cassette only editions of local underground music. Many of you here are aware of these releases. It was also around this time that he published his Trance Directory – writings on a series of bands he thought created trance music – music that transported the listener.

I want to add that Barry mentioned Mike Bennett’s Still Life release on Contagion Records from this period as a major “ah ha” moment. I think it was then he realized he didn’t need a traditional rock band to make the kind of music he wanted to make.

Most importantly, he began releasing solo records of ambient and trance music as A Produce. It’s in his ambient/trance work that his strange genius really shined. I will always stand in awe of how he could shape the most insubstantial and ethereal sounds into something beautiful and mesmerizing.
 
When we were still in Afterimage, he liked to quote my own lyrics to me at moments he found mystically appropriate. So I’ll leave you with this:

Now here we sit
In our satellite of love
Back to our senses
With traces above
The vision is there
It surrounds us
Back to our senses
Satellite of love


May his vision remain clear for us.

Daniel Voznick   aka Alec Tension of Afterimage
http://www.afterimage.biz/
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Dean De Benedictis on September 08, 2011, 07:16:36 PM
I am constantly touched by what I read here...

And it's very revealing.

I've been listening to a lot of the three A Produce songs that always moved me the most:  Overground (with Mike Griffen), Within Reach and Clear Pools.  I have many memories of spending days and nights in the desert with these three songs, and then always returning to talk to Barry about it.  I think he just loved to hear how other people shared his passion for the desert.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: LNerell on September 09, 2011, 10:27:34 AM
Just to fill everyone in, Barry's funeral service will be held in his home town of Rockford, IL, and is tentatively scheduled for  Wednesday or Thursday of next week depending upon how soon they can get his body out of state.  The funeral home is Fred C. Olson Funeral  Chapel at 1001 2nd Avenue and their website is http://www.olsonfh.com/ (http://www.olsonfh.com/) If you are not a close friend or family member and you wish to attend, it might be best to call ahead and make sure it is ok out of respect to the family.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Dean De Benedictis on September 09, 2011, 04:32:16 PM
Thanks, Loren.  I highly encourage anyone who can attend to go ahead and contact his family. 

Sister Cheryl: cheryldparker@comcast.net
or Laurie: hvn2fn@aol.com

I really wish I could do it myself but in my present situation it's not possible.  If it were in LA I probably could have, but not out in IL.  Still, my thoughts will be there that day.

Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: jkn on September 13, 2011, 10:22:45 AM
http://blogs.laweekly.com/westcoastsound/2011/09/barry_craig_is_dead_colleagues.php

Barry Craig is Dead: Colleagues Remember The Influential L.A. Ambient Musician
By David Cotner Tue., Sep. 13 2011 at 8:35 AM

Barry Craig was an important figure in the early years of minimal and ambient music in L.A., first with his Trance Port Tapes label and later with his project A Produce. He died last week, on September 4, of acute pancreatitis.

In the early '80s he was a part of new wave band Afterimage, and launched his Trance Port Tapes label in 1983. He released spoken word by Timothy Leary, music by L.A.F.M.S. madman Tom Recchion, Brad Laner's Debt of Nature, and a cassette by John J. Lafia, the filmmaker behind the first Child's Play movies.

Presented in exquisitely packaged letterpress folders from Bruce Licher's Independent Project Press, these tapes would mysteriously appear in the dusty plastic bins at Aron's, kicked underneath the trance CD section.


After launching the A Produce LP The Clearing in 1988 and later issuing several self-pressed CDs of organic brilliance, Craig became obsessed with recording ambient sounds. Everything from the traffic outside the window of his Glendale apartment to the wind on desert dunes was fair game.

"He was a purveyor of California minimalism and the L.A. experimental music scene," says Tom Recchion. "He was committed to his own vision of sound that stood without interest in its connection to what was going on elsewhere."

Craig's latest work, a collaboration with Loren Nerell called Intangible, came out on Hypnos this summer. "Intangible generated a lot of excitement among the ambient music community, and I know this favorable reaction meant a lot to Barry and re-energized him about recording again," says Mike Griffin, who released Craig's recordings on his Hypnos label.

"He would often use the term "deep listening" as an umbrella term for the kind of music he played, but 'deep listening' is a term that could also be applied to how Barry listened to music," adds Jeff Pearce, Craig's Hypnos label mate. "He could hear things in pieces of music that so many others - including me - would miss."

"We were going to get together on the Sunday that he passed away to play around with his new keyboard," says Loren Nerell. "No one knew he was sick."

"By using the phrase 'trance music' he tried to distinguish our efforts from '70s European 'space-music' or Eno's 'ambient,'" says Robert Rich, a "sleep concert" pioneer. "He tried to distance our more edgy style from the bliss of New Age spiritualism. He wrote essays explaining that 'trance music' should have shadows, that it could be more urban and could reflect the challenges of our time."


Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 13, 2011, 10:45:17 AM
Thanks for the link, John. I didn't know if this would be online or just in print.

It's nice to see information about Barry and his recording career presented from beginning to end like this. I tried to contribute as much of this kind of thing as I could here in this forum thread, but I could only go back so far.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on September 13, 2011, 10:55:14 AM
Something I can't help thinking, after talking briefly with David Cotner and reading this obituary he put together, is that we should all be so lucky as to have an "ambient aware" journalist to assemble such a remembrance as this in our local press. Thanks for this, David. Barry would have appreciated it.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: jkn on September 13, 2011, 11:00:44 AM
This popped up in my google news "ambient music" section - and I'm very happy to see it and repost it here for everyone.   

This was really well written.  A touching tribute.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Matthew Davenport on September 13, 2011, 10:58:02 PM
I love A Produce. I remember hearing a few tracks of his on Hearts of Space and my favorite track of his was The Golden Needle....absolutely awesome pedal steel guitar. Looooove it.  8) he was awesome and very talented. God Bless him for his work and talent
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: sraymar on September 16, 2011, 09:27:07 PM
I was a little shocked reading this a couple weeks back, he was only five years older than me.  I'm in that age group where this becomes more and more common as time goes by. Barry actually emailed me about ten years ago after reading about a CD I did back then and wanted to trade me Inscape and Landscape for it. His CD is much better and definitely my fav of all his work I've heard so far. I still remember him telling me he was leaving MP3.com just before "the dreaded Vivendi" as he put it took it over. Lost touch with him after that.

So long Barry.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: drkappa on September 21, 2011, 09:40:18 PM
I was taken aback when I read of this tragic news in Ron Boots's Groove newsletter.

It is strange that I learnt the true identity of the mysterious A Produce only after
his passing.  I first came across his bewitching music on Hearts of Space in 1999
and soon bought Land of a Thousand Trances, later followed by all but two of
those mention in earlier posts.  I shall look forward to the legacy of Intangible now
I'm settling inafter a move, like Seren with added poignancy.

Such is the quality of the music, nearly fifty tracks made by Barry solo or with
collaborators appeared on Hearts of Space over the years.  It might be time for an
A Produce retrospective Mr. Hill.

Given that we've lost many in the ambient and electronic genres in the last few years,
dying in their forties and fifties, those of us of similar vintage need to consider how to
make the most of each day.  One never knows when the metaphorical bus will hit.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: LNerell on September 24, 2011, 03:54:04 PM
Just thought I would pass the word, for those who are interested next Saturday, October 1st at 1 pm we will have a memorial for Barry (A Produce) at his house in LA. If you are interested in knowing the details (not many at the moment) feel free to get a hold of me
 privately. I think it will be a fairly causal affair, just bring yourself and some stories about Barry that you would like to share. I will update more if needed.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: stephaniesante on October 23, 2011, 06:22:15 AM
This last week or two I was lamenting the loss of Dennis Ritchie (C Language, Unix) and Steve Jobs. This morning I woke up very early this morning thinking about Ambient Music and decided to surf over to the Hypnos Forum and lurk a little. Sadly the first thing that I noticed was the passing of Barry Craig (A Produce). While I did not know Barry well, we did exchange a few emails back around 2000-2001 (if memory serves me well) and exchanged some CD's. I love Barry's music and hold his creative insight in high esteem. I wish his family the best and am most grateful for the legacy he has left the Ambient community.

Blessings to you Barry.
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Mark Mushet on October 30, 2011, 11:33:56 PM
Another reason to absolutely loathe CD-Rs: I just found my copy of Barry's  "A Smooth Surface - Special Edition" disc. Of course, it loaded and virtually self destructed in my MacBook's CD drive. Was barely able to get 5 of the 6 tracks loaded into iTunes to salvage them. It's made by TDK and appears pristine. CD-Rs are absolutely fucking evil...and I can't e-mail of phone Barry to get a replacement...
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: mgriffin on October 31, 2011, 08:12:21 AM
In this case, Mark, the problem isn't the CDR medium but the stick-on labels Barry used for his Trance Port Special Editions.

It's my belief that stick-on CD labels are responsible for at least 90% of the problems people report with CDR releases. Either the labels are stuck on the disc off-center (so the disc's rotation is imperfect), or they come un-stuck inside the player, or they warp the disc slightly so the laser has a hard time reading the disc.

Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: Mark Mushet on October 31, 2011, 08:56:55 AM
I know Barry very much preferred properly pressed CDs to having to go with CD-Rs. If I recall correctly we had a few conversations about the Opal Eno installation soundtrack CD-Rs (at $28 bucks apiece) failing soon after release (all but one of mine are now toast).

Your thinking on this does make a certain amount of sense but I've had too many non-labelled CD-Rs fail on me as well. In this case, Barry's CD-R is playing in one CD player fine. But in the MacBook it literally grinds to a halt. That may be the result of the combination of the drive design/sensitivity and sticker placement thickness.

But in any case I must ask: "What would Barry do?" I think he'd be pretty frustrated and wish it had been pressed as a proper disc!
Title: Re: Sad news about Barry Craig, better known as A Produce
Post by: drone on on November 14, 2012, 04:16:26 PM
Avoid TDK blanks at all costs.  Almost every bad CDR I've encountered has been TDK...