How I Name Things

I thought it might be interesting to explain the names of some things. I try to find names I will remember five years from now. Ideally, I can find something unique in the song that I can hang a title on. When I hear the song, it will trigger the name. It is harder than one might think, with mostly instrumental music.

Series Titles

I decided to name my initial series of CDs Dance of Noodles. These CDs are all intended to be VERY RELAXING and were written to listen to during my massages. When I came out with more up tempo tunes for Return To Self, I wanted a new series name to distinguish this CD from the others, so I came up with Bonsai Method. The meanings behind these names are described below.

Dance of Noodles - when musicians are just fiddling around we call it "noodling". My songs are not written out in advance. I noodle around with the (digital) tape running and then heavily edit the results. The goal is to make my noodles all work together -- to dance.

Bonsai Method - another way of looking at this technique is that I first overfill the songs. There is too much going on with too many people playing at once - it is a bit unpleasant at times. Then I gradually remove all but the parts I choose to keep, much as a bonsai tree is revealed through pruning. I thought of calling it Musical Archeology, since I also feel I "find" the music as much as create it.

Song Titles

Room for Birds

A Simple Pat - Feels like a Pat Metheny rip-off

Dinamel - This used to mean something 30 years ago, I think, but I certainly don't remember what it was.

YadaYada - The song seems to go yada yada quite a bit

Coming Fourth - Fourth song and seemed like a "coming out" song

Press On -

Soon To Be -

Seep Edge - Definitely some seeping sounds in this one

Evaporation -

Paul Horn in the Loo - Lookup Paul Horn's "Inside" series

Alistair Gets Even - Lookup Monty Python: "I can never visit Philadelphia without being reminded of the story of the Texan ..."

Waves of Despair - self explanatory

Impensive - Made up word - I stopped doing those kind of titles, for the most part

Chimes Of Lun - Named after the Woodstock Chimes I used - this song was their maiden voyage, for me

Room for Birds - Could mean several things - I like most of them

Through the Leaves - Vague sort of name that I can rarely hook back to the song

Tour the Nebula - Another generic name that is hard to keep with its owner

Li'l Horny - If I have to explain this, you're not old enough.

South of Wujiba -

The Sixth Plateau - This song has a lot of minor-6 chords in it, such as Cm6.

Dance of Noodles - Nothing but noodling - with splashes of Margo's song (she'll know what I mean)

Formless Steel - Features a poorly fabricated steel drum run through a lot of effects.

Personal Pity - To me, the song seemed to be complaining a bit. Poor me.

bob'n'ebb - This one just seemed to float and gurgle - oooh, wish I'd thought of "gurgle" earlier ...

Spokane - Written in Spokane, WA many many years ago - one of my oldest songs

Be Nice -

Room for Birds II - Another version of the same song

Fin - Seemed like a nice ending, and so I named it as such - bit of a Wayne Shorter rip-off

Dozy Canoe

Empty Reflection -

Monk y Funk - Seems to have both

Jenn's Sacrifice - Jennifer gave me the recorder (flute) I play on this song many years ago, but her real sacrifices were much more serious than giving away a recorder. I hope you are well, Jennifer.

Broken Bird - For me, the title creates a back story that gives the song much greater potential impact - my own little "Fox Chase"

Delta Flotsam -

Descending Stairs in Stone -

Stone Flue - Can you hear the smoke rising up and out? I can, and then I can remember the name of the song.

Spilled Milk - Boo hoo - I'm such a whiner!

A Brief Thaw - Drip, drip, drip - another successful title for remembering

Zoned Therapy - Meant as a bit of an homage to my Reflexology therapist

Woolly Remembrance - I don't quite recall

Quiet Hollow - Pronounced in the southern style it is "quiet holler", a bit of an oxymoron

Beached - If I can catch the "whale sounds", I'll remember the title

Dozy Canoe - Just floating the day away

Touching Up -

Simple Explanation - Or so I thought when I started ...

Las Sombras - Hanging out in the shade ...

Autumn's End - Another lousy generic title that I can never remember

Moons of Melodrameda - Fun name, but hard to keep with its song.

Floating Dance - Based on a romantic evening in a swimming pool

Eubie - Sad song written around the time when Eubie Blake passed away and for some reason named after him, although I do not know his music.

Woodrow's Wanders - Named after the Woodrow it is played on, a sort of dulcimer for guitar players.

Crossing Over -

On the Mend -

Fretless Beano - More fun if you figure it out for yourself

Triton Epsilon -

Having No Voice

O'er the Rise - As it says

Maybe Next Time -

Hulusi Hurt - Named after the Hulusi, with a cheap poke at my sister Luci.

L'adieu - Farewell to my darling Criquette, as fine a feline as I've ever known.

Ice Girl Melting -

Ambling Rhodes - Typical pun

You Know What You Did -

Paint the Sky -

Enjoying the Journey -

Polishing a Memory -

Disembodimentia - Another made up word, but this one sticks with its song, for me. I'm happy with it.

To Be Naught -

Wrong Again - I always think this is Having No Voice, but then I realize it isn't. Wrong Again.

Must Make Waves - Implications of trouble making - title seems to stick.

Forgotten Houseplant -

Over Before It Started -

Swell Idea - Definitely a lot of swelling in the song - some chance of the name being remembered

Dancing on Eggshells -

Having No Voice -

Another Small Failure -

Skeeter's Moment -

Long Day Done -

Cord of Hope -

Return to Self

Return To Self - Back to try making some songs with a beat, after three space cadet albums where I learned a TON about my recording technique.

Scooter Buzz - Cruising along on my scooter late a night ...

She Walked Away or Sushi Bar Blues - not the musical blues, but the sadness blues - some guy at the sushi bar mumbling to himself ...

Strain to Impress - How fast can I play? Not very. That's not really my thing.

After I've Been Crazy - self explanatory

Kneading Someone - Massage humor. Except not humorous.

Melancholy in Paradise - My typical state on vacation - some folks are simply never happy.

With My Squiggle Out - You can hear the dan bau - that's the squiggle - then I just had some fun with it

There's Kindness - self explanatory

Flugel Horned Gnomes - One of my favorite titles, featuring imitation flugelhorn, naturally

Sticky Fingers - The song felt a little ... sticky to me. A tad unsavory.

Simon's Credo - Keep It Simple

Tweak the Cat - This song bothers my cat, who gets quite upset when it winds into the its most frenzied moments.

Morning Routine - This song has a set of "cycles" it goes through, which led to the name.

Should Be Easy - I can just hear the words with the melody, "Should be easy ... to do."