Post-classic rock fusion incorporating elements of rock, folk, blues, jazz, electronic, symphonic, latin, world and country influences.
F. J. Serafim - Vocals, Electric/Acoustic/Synth Guitars, Synthesizers, Pianos & Production

"Hi Frederick, I liked the lyrical concept, the musical arrangements, musicianship and vocals... are on the right track with your songwriting. Wishing you success with your music, Mike" (Moody Blues co-founder Mike Pinder)

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Related Sites on Soundclick:
Frederick's Interview Commentary
The Schizoid Visionaries - Satire, Music and Commentary
For Frederick on Spotify, iTunes etc...
Ethereal Quest I / Ethereal Quest II / Ethereal Quest III
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An uplifting bit of guitar and synth rock featuring compelling harmony vocals, melodies, hooks and riffs.
A SoundClick Top 10 song
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Why this name?
Although I just happened to be born with a surname which bears religious connotation, in line with my paternal upbringing I've never adhered to any particular devotional or organized belief and instead prefer a more earth-bound sense of ethics and philosophy. Not that world religions are without valid teachings, as any agnostic professor of religious studies can attest to. However, devotional religious belief has often proven divisive and marred by the miraculous, and therefore more highly prone to politicized radicalization and socially sanctioned mass delusion... not that atheism provides any answers being that it also is an irrational absolute belief, - but in the opposite non-verifiable assertion that there is "no God". Mind you, you have to respect the many very moral atheists who behave in an ethical manner without the expectation of a heavenly reward, simply because it's the right way to be. On the other hand, there may well be a higher power that looks favourably upon people who search for "God" through the lens of their man-made religions, if they are sincere in their efforts.
I recently did that DNA ancestry test and though it isn't quite an exact science, I found that my heritage since the 1600's is roughly: French, German, Italian, Eastern European, British Isles, Scandinavian, Iberian, Yakut Asian and East African, in gradual descending order, plus other generalized elements from earlier times. Racial divides are largely just political constructs.
Band History:
My last string of paid performances was from 2005 to 2008 and these days it would take a particularly interesting opportunity to get me out of my hassle free follow-the-sun retirement lifestyle. Lately, I have been performing a bit at my main winter resort, but I've always valued my privacy and never really craved the spotlight; except that I'm a poet with a backstory that could be helpful to some people. I partly sing as an emissary of society's psychiatrized underclass, and for the improved mental health of human culture. That's actually a lot of people, but it's a contentious issue whereby people generally aren't in the mood for cheering and waving cigarette lighters, and my brand of philosophy-rock is pretty much the antithesis of the current mainstream music paradigms. I started out around 1969 as a sort of oxymoronic honorable pirate, performing in the Niagara area. By my early 20's, life turned into a psychiatric slugfest, which then transformed into a black comedy of self-help reform activism in Canada and the US, with the roar of the Falls as a backdrop beckoning the suicidal. Many positive reforms occurred during this period and along the way, in addition to my day career, I always performed just enough well received gigs to maintain my stage legs, out of a sense of obligation to my craft, but seldom in such a way as to conform to any of the music industry's commercial parameters. For me, pop culture, despite some obvious talent, has often served to foment a type of false idol worship and cattle mentality behaviour. Has it ever really been that big a deal, or just a form of capitalistic, media induced, mass delusion? Nevertheless, I never blamed John Lennon for his "more popular than Jesus" remark. It was merely a rhetorical statement of fact. I was more concerned that he was overshadowing the more modern and relevant likes of Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. etc. But I digress...
Your influences?
I've always appreciated a wide spectrum of music beyond my own personal styles, but some of my early favorites, back when high economy of scale production costs necessitated label support, ranged from the likes of Warren Zevon, Springsteen, Santana and The Band, to progressive Art-Rock bands such as the Strawbs and Pink Floyd. However, my single favorite was always Moody Blues co-founder and mellotron proponent Mike Pinder, and so when we exchanged emails when he first appeared on the net, I was very pleased. Also, when I was seriously ill in 2009, he got back to me with words of encouragement within an hour. He's a very singular artist and a wonderful man. At a time when synths were only capable of bleeps and squawks, he and the Moodys were fusing rock with symphonic elements using the analog tape based orchestral mellotron, an instrument he helped develop. Great voice too. " I'm a melancholy man doing what I can, the whole world surrounds me and I think I understand...".
Equipment used:
My main guitar is an electric/acoustic/synth access Godin LGX-SA. I use Roland keyboard-synth workstations, plus various microphones, processors and software applications. Although I occasionally perform and jam with other musicians, my chief interest and source of enjoyment has always been in embracing the entire recording process as a solo artist, from the initial creative spark, through arranging and performing the tracks, to engineering the final sonic masters. After decades of recording analog demos, I started throwing down digital tracks in the mid 90's, knowing that everything could be continually remastered at my leisure. My rationale at the time was similar to that of Dylan and The Band recording the Basement Tapes, but with the digital advantage. Though I do use digital editing, I shun automatic arrangers, arpeggiators and vocal auto-tuners, and specifically compose or spontaneously improvise every note of my music, and record my vocals in 1 or 2 takes. I try to combine appealing melodies with more complex chordal progressions, and strive to achieve the greatest stylistic variability I can attain within the rock-fusion framework, but not to the degree where it impinges upon quality.
Anything else...?
In the early 70’s I endured a severe psychiatric beating even though I was a self-admitted naive guy who thought there were people who could counsel me regarding my habitual pot smoking. The only counselling I got was my family doctor contradicting me for a tense 30 seconds before the hellish injections started. Big generation gap back then! A few years later he convinced an employer to rescind their offer of employment to me, but before that, having suffered adverse medication reactions, I was held and ECT'd by a right wing psychiatrist, who claimed she was going to reprogram me. Her name was "Hobbs" and in keeping with the words of philosopher Thomas Hobbes, it looked like my life was about to become "nasty, brutish and short". She released me a year later after zombifying and enslaving me in a "work therapy" program. Fortunately, I survived a deliberate 60 mph head on crash into a concrete wall, with merely a nosebleed. I actually laughed and climbed out of the wreck with a whole new attitude. It was all legal back then. Close friends and family were flummoxed into acquiescence and rivals delighted. In 1978, my protest against workplace discrimination on the sole basis of psychiatric history became possibly the first story of this type to go national in the Associated Press. For a few years the thrust of my youthful energy went into psychiatric reform advocacy in both Canada and the US, rather than music, before settling into a career in business from which I'm now happily retired, - not the life I was aiming for but sometimes life is a tragic comedy and you just have to roll with it. To relearn and choose a musical career would've been viewed as a symptom of insanity.
We're fortunate to be living in a part of the world where the worst affairs usually only warrant sardonic derision rather than horror and revulsion... at least for now... In the spring of 1978, prior to any mention in the press, I was peaceably obsessed with the inexplicable realization that the nation of Iran was about to erupt into an Islamic revolutionary tumult which would have far reaching consequences for western civilization. People thought I was crazy and psychiatrists and even police needlessly monitored my organizational activities for a time, but a year or so later we all watched the sudden rise of Ayatollah Khomeini and then the U.S. hostage crisis in Iran, while the CIA was caught with their pants down. Today, the "Islamic" terror movement continues and such challenges forebode a dark future. I also had one other major precognition which I sang about with a song called "Oh, John Paul" at a performance a month before the event occurred in the world news. Later, the movie "Godfather 3" incorporated the controversial death of Pope John Paul 1 in the script, and more recently a play called "The Last Confession" has been written about it, but I was the only one singing about it before it unexpectedly happened. You can find more about it on my song page list. I attribute these occurrences to my experience with the Carl Jung concept of meaningful coincidence, "Synchronicity", and to seemingly external "voices", along with a heightened psychological state. My roommate at the time still corroborates these events the same way I do. I was actually working on my own demo in the early 80's with synchronicity as a central theme when Sting (who shares my birthdate) then released Police's "Synchronicity" album. Peopled diagnosed as "schizophrenic" or "bipolar" are often troubled by these bizarre coincidences. "Paranoid" schizophrenics often react by wrongly attributing them to a material conspiracy, while most seek the metaphysical and then engage in a wild delusional hunt for more "clues". Unfortunately, modern mainstream psychiatry has diminished some valid psychological principles including Jung's theory of synchronicity and offers little counseling in these cases, preferring to mostly treat with heavy drugs and shock treatments - providing merely a debilitating short term solution whereby the most extreme psychotic disturbances are caused by patients going off their meds cold turkey.
I think all can ultimately be explained by science but science doesn't end at our current level of understanding. My view of the human race is best summed up by the words of Gilbert & Sullivan's honorable Pirate of Penzance "Frederic" who says "Individually, I love you all with affection unspeakable, but, collectively I look upon you with a disgust that amounts to absolute detestation". I found these words through a synchronous Time magazine review of the movie which captioned the protagonist as "The Seraphically Stupid Frederic"; a caption which not only referenced both my first and last names but also perfectly described my youthful naivety:) For $ you can find this in Time's digital archives, or here's my copy of it for free
Cryterion Live
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