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Messages - Paul Vnuk (Ma Ja Le)

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Everything and Nothing / Re: Ravi and Anoushka
« on: October 15, 2008, 07:49:53 PM »
Saw them 3 times over the years down in Chicago, the 1st & 3rd times were magical, the 2nd was an off night for Ravi. One of the greatest musical masters of our time!


Music Gearheads Tech Talk / Re: Singing Bowls
« on: October 14, 2008, 07:06:50 AM »
....shortly hit upon the idea of using one of the temple bells (two small cymbals on a string) and twirled one end around inside the bowls as fast as I could - was definitely edgy and dischordant - and apologised to the bowls all the time I was doing it. Surprisingly none seem to be any th worse for wear.

Ok now I have to try this when I get to the studio later today...


Music Gearheads Tech Talk / Re: Singing Bowls
« on: October 10, 2008, 07:49:56 PM »
I got my favorite singing bowl in Hong Kong a few years ago, ornate and carved with a gorgeous tone.

Gigi (Oophoi) has one of the nicest collections I have seen, although if I remember he was selling some of them a few years ago.


Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: 80's Music Forum
« on: September 27, 2008, 02:27:38 PM »
One thing I have always found interesting for myself is that I was never a fan of most 80's music while I was living through it...well the synth pop stuff anyway.

I did like Missing Persons and the Go Go's quite a bit, and maybe early Cars (that was late 70's though), but for most of the mid 80's (84-88) I was into metal like early Ozzy, Priest and Maiden and then moved swiftly into Venom, Exodus, Slayer, Exciter and early Pre-black album Metalica, from there it was punk and hardcore for a few years, Black Flag, GBH, Naked Raygun, Minor Threat and then that evolved backwards into classic rock again like Zeppelin, Beatles & Floyd which I liked before the 80's. The only late 80's band I really liked a lot was the Cult.

Strangely it has been in the past 5 years I have been able to appreciate the sound and skill of bands like Depeche Mode, Duran Duran, Japan, Talk Talk, Tears for Fears, Sade and such and now with very few exceptions, I cannot listen to most of my older hard core and extreme metal tastes.

One of the things which blows me away now about many of the 80's pop and new romantic stuff is the production and precision of the playing and the music, especially when you consider, they had no auto-tune, softsynths, pro-tools, drum editing and such...they really sang and played that tight. Amazing!


ohh and on your second part, I think the "pleasure" part of creation is a most assuredly one of the reasons artists keep going and become engaged in the first place.


I would agree Forrest, thats why I never trust that reasoning from artists as their way out of criticism or a way to dodge said rules...

I would push the point that whenever any artist looks deep into their creative process and their beliefs for that matter, as I am not sure you can successfully separate the two, then they will find a set of rules and/or ideologies to which they will consciously or even sub-consciously become guided by...and that it is the art which is devoid of such principals and rules that is ultimately over the course of time...useless and forgetable.


Interesting thread,

9Dragons, I really enjoyed your take on this.

...pushing this train of thought further,

I also see a parallel in that:

Art or what we call art, be it song, sculpture, painting, architecture, whatever, like societies of old, especially those with deistic leanings (everything from Roman Catholicism, native tribal culture to Judaism) as well as societies with imposed socialistic deism like many Chinese and Roman Dynasties...they all had rules or codes of conduct, which weighed heavily on Art. These rules created both a reason of intent for the art as well as a level of what was acceptable, many times down to something which we take for granted like style, color, chord choice, instrumentation and so on.

I would wager that in many instances these "rules" and the skill required to work around them led to work that is subjectively longer lasting and superior to what is being created today.

Like 9dragons implied, in many cases the work, much like the world back then carried greater meaning.

Now in our "oprahesque" society (just an example not meant to spark debate...sorry to the Oprah fans here) where anything goes, right and wrong are on an individual sliding scale and art (and religion) has become entertainment, it is all largely disposable. What (or whom) is the modern artist/musician creating for?

I have even seen this make its way into our art colleges in the US, where students used to be pushed hard to learn tradition and technique...IE rules, now students are allowed to..."BE".

While this may be arguably beneficial to their inner child, I am not necessarily sure it is so for the cause of art.

In many ways this is why the artistic arguments, safety blanket of..."I create just for myself" may be partially to blame for the throw away media of the day...again no rules, no striving and many times no passion behind the creative drive, because once you reveal your passions or your reason for being, then your art will have a measurement on which it could be judged... as well as be open to debate.

Also add to this the constantly obsolete movements of Cool, what is "in" now, won't be in 6 months, is this really long enough for any artistic movement to reach fruition?

Ok thats all that will come pouring forth for now.


Music Gearheads Tech Talk / Re: Prophet 08
« on: August 31, 2008, 04:39:35 PM »
I have one and love it! Not sure what else to say. It is one of only 4 synths I now own. I whittled down my collection to 4 that I really liked and wanted to dive deep into.

I would say, I don't love it as much as my Moog Voayger, but it is a close second.

You really need to move past the presets though, as they are...underwelming.

I have a cd coming out soon (Atmoworks) of a live performance which features the P8 prominantly.


I think whenever we like it or not, softsynths are the future, for many reasons, with all tools I got including professional studio plug ins and reverbs I see no real reason to switch to hardware.

The only problem I have have with this thread is that Immersion, you really need to stop making such broad sweeping statements as the ones above.

I have been reading this thread with interrest and there is a nice balance of insight from folks as to the tools being largley un-important to the end result, which I agree to in theory, but not necessarily practice as the instruments you choose "will" have a huge impact on the end result.

Now setting aside that this is ambient music for a second, will a guitarist "most likely" make better music with a cheap $79.00 Harmony Acoustic or if they can afford it...a $2000 Taylor? Which instrument will inspire better playing and learning?

Unfortunatly I honestly feel it is similar with synths, recording gear and so on.

Meaning that you may actually learn more and get better sounds with a real modular, than with a soft synth equivalent, or I can't find one single person in the industry who acctually thinks and belives that the Arturia, NI or GForce recreations sound anywhere close to their real world equivalents. Now this may not matter to an end user or even a listener, which in some cases is sad, but there is a quantifiable difference to the real thing VS software.

Even in plug-ins, every time I have switched to the real thing from a plug-in version the difference has been obvious. Does it stop me from using plug-ins or soft synths, no...but when given the choice I would certainly choose the real thing.

Just my opinion,

I guess my point is that while soft synths and plug-ins are here to stay and quite excellent in many cases, I don't see any proof in the industry that the real gear is becoming exctinct yet. In fact many the Boutique hardware industry is at an all time high...


Everything and Nothing / Re: Returning after a long absence
« on: June 22, 2008, 05:30:49 PM »

Everything and Nothing / Re: Returning after a long absence
« on: June 21, 2008, 09:29:16 PM »
Welcome back!

Music Gearheads Tech Talk / Re: More Gear must Go!!! Sale!
« on: June 11, 2008, 04:20:15 PM »

Music Gearheads Tech Talk / More Gear must Go!!! Sale!
« on: June 08, 2008, 08:19:15 PM »
I just put up my Roland V-Synth for sale on E-Bay...and then it dawned on me I should have posted it here.

Anyway its on E-bay with a buy it now of $900, if anyone here wants it for $800 let me know and I will pull the auction.

Its in really good shape, has the original box and manuals. It is the original V-Synth.

You can email me at


Music Gearheads Tech Talk / Re: GOT GEAR?
« on: May 30, 2008, 05:49:39 PM »
Some how I am not sure bringing something that looks like it could be a homemade bomb on an airplane is such a great idea  ::)

You should have seen the looks on security when I took my Korg Wavedrum as a carry on through Holland and Germany...


Jeannie's set was for most of us a true high point of the festival. Very mellow, minimal, restrained and quite beautiful.

I look forward to her CD.


Wow this is truly shocking and sad news!

I never knew of his health issues.

I remember meeting him during one of my sojourns out to PA, and also corresponding with him during my collaboration with Oophoi a few years ago. He was a really nice guy and a true fan of the Drone.

You will be missed our friend!!!


Just finished my last round of rehearsals and I am packed up and ready to go!

Paul  ;D

Music Gearheads Tech Talk / Re: Gear: Studio shots by Deb
« on: March 08, 2008, 01:56:09 PM »
There's no rule that you need to be a techie geek to enjoy music!   :)

Yes there is its on page 27, paragraph 2, article 13...sheesh, everyone knows that!  ;D

Music Gearheads Tech Talk / Re: Gear: Studio shots by Deb
« on: March 05, 2008, 09:15:58 PM »
According to Fletcher (Mercenary guy) the only thing differnent with the Mercenary Edition is the color change, unlike other Mercenary gear which is designed to their specs.

Speaking of Mercenary Editions the Drawmer 1968 Tube Compressor is aaammmaaazzzziing for running whole mixes through.


Music Gearheads Tech Talk / Re: Gear: Studio shots by Deb
« on: March 01, 2008, 12:37:01 PM »
Copy-boy at Behringer  ::) wow I thought that was the CEO's title.


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