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Michael S. Carpenter
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Michael S. Carpenter
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3 Top 50
63 Tracks
One man recording the cobwebs of his mind; Shall we listen in?
1
The Truth In Any Way
Today #51 in Pop Rock subgenre
2
America On Its Knees
Peak position #21
3
Let's Run Away Together (If Only In Our Mind)
Today #32 in Adult Contemporary subgenre
4
The I Ain't Got No Blues
Today #68 in Country-Pop subgenre
5
I've Been Down So Long
Today #94 in Blues
America On Its Knees
One man singer-songwriter musician. Included here are songs written as far back as the late seventies, up to and including the present day. Four of the songs were recorded in the late 90's and make up an EP called Skies. Other albums include A Man Alone from 2002, and The World At Large from 2005. Since then, songs have been released singly as they've been completed. A new album is now available - Tales Of Love And Defiance (talesofloveanddefiance.com)
Band/artist history
I started out writing songs at the age of thirteen, even before I could play an instrument! I got my first guitar about a year later and then my first bass at the age of sixteen. Like many others, I was in and out of a succession of bands, playing my dues in late-night gigs at cheap boozers. I was always interested in recording, and took a six-week course in my mid-twenties. Moving through a series of different platforms at home, I was writing and recording my own material throughout. The problem was that I was playing in bands where nobody else was seriously interested in recording; it was always the gig, and recording was seen as a bit of a joke. My thinking was the complete opposite, so it was always causing a bit of friction. This and other things eventually led to me no longer playing live. I now work on my own, writing and recording original material to my own schedule.
Have you performed in front of an audience?
I've gigged many times over the years, even doing some TV and radio, but I've always been more interested in recording. The idea of creating something special, something that might last longer than the moment has always had a powerful hold on me. Not that I don't have many great (and not-so-great) memories of playing live, but I'd still rather be in the studio, taking the time to shape and hone the finished article.
Your musical influences
Everyone who knows me will tell you that my influences begin and end with one source: the Beatles. They are always my gold standard as to what's good and what's not. It's all filtered through their example. To a lesser extent, the music of the Sixties is also a powerful influence - the Who, the Stones, etc. To me, California Dreaming is one of the best songs ever written! I'm also influenced by things like music of the Renaissance, Medieval church music, Bach and others. I think it tends to come out in my own work with my string scoring, although even there I'm always mindful of the examples set by George Martin (the Beatles' producer).
What equipment do you use?
I started seriously recording with a TASCAM 144 Portastudio. Then I moved to a TASCAM Pocketstudio 5, followed by a TASCAM 788. Eventually I moved to PC recording with Cubase Elements. I now also use a TASCAM DP-32SD to capture acoustic sounds, since I don't have the proper interface on my computer! For guitar and bass, I run them through a Yamaha THR10 amp, which is then connected via USB to the PC. Microphones include a Shure SM-57 & Rode NT-1A. I have various guitars, basses & keyboards, as well as some typical percussion gear. For strings, horns and basic piano sounds, I use one of my Yamaha 61-key keyboards, but lately it's been mostly done with software called Musescore. This allows me to actually score the parts, which I can then input into Cubase. It also lets me compose piano parts more complicated than I could actually play. All my vocal tracks are run through Melodyne for tuning.
Anything else?
The newest album (Tales Of Love And Defiance) was released in June of 2020. This was a first in that the tracks were mixed and mastered at a professional studio in London, so the finished product has production values that are well above anything I've done before. It's only available as a physical CD (no downloads). Go to https://talesofloveanddefiance.com to hear samples or purchase a copy.
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