Seed Ideas

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Ang Mo
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Postby Ang Mo » Mon Mar 21, 2011 5:28 am

Well a University professor said it best when he conjured up the image of a student wearing a clown suit, walking down the hallway with a shotgun, to kill his professor for giving him an "F" in Ukranian Egg Baking..........

Maybe Vienna could write a song on this issue. Not sure if she is still into the whole "seed idea" or not but I thought I would throw it out into the arena.
--the only adults who are never depressed: chuckleheads, California surfers, and fundamentalist Christians who believe they have had a personal encounter with Jesus and are saved once and for all. Would you trade your depression to become any of these?

Cooler Near The Lake
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Postby Cooler Near The Lake » Tue Mar 22, 2011 10:48 pm

Raising new songs from seeds is an excellent idea, and the world can certainly always use another new Teng song, particularly if it helps to prevent stupid ideas such as allowing students to carry guns on campus, or crimes such as pouring oil into the Gulf.
On the other hand - how about bringing in the harvest, i.e. release some of the unreleased stuff that might otherwise be lost?
Over the years, Vienna has written and performed a number of songs that were never officially released and that exist, at best, as videos with more or less awful sound quality. Of course we have to acknowledge Vienna's artistic freedom of decision if some songs never made it on any of the albums, whatever the reason may have been. But from the forum or from YT comments it would seem that I'm not the only one who likes, e.g., the Rainwalk Song or Nothing Left For Us To Find. So I hope Vienna will decide to give at least some of these candidates a second chance. To stay in the picture, the seedlings are already there.
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Fred
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Postby Fred » Wed Mar 23, 2011 2:00 am

Cooler Near The Lake wrote:Raising new songs from seeds is an excellent idea, and the world can certainly always use another new Teng song, particularly if it helps to prevent stupid ideas such as allowing students to carry guns on campus, or crimes such as pouring oil into the Gulf.
On the other hand - how about bringing in the harvest, i.e. release some of the unreleased stuff that might otherwise be lost?
Over the years, Vienna has written and performed a number of songs that were never officially released and that exist, at best, as videos with more or less awful sound quality. Of course we have to acknowledge Vienna's artistic freedom of decision if some songs never made it on any of the albums, whatever the reason may have been. But from the forum or from YT comments it would seem that I'm not the only one who likes, e.g., the Rainwalk Song or Nothing Left For Us To Find. So I hope Vienna will decide to give at least some of these candidates a second chance. To stay in the picture, the seedlings are already there.

Hi, Cooler Near The Lake! Good to hear from you again. My hunch is that Vienna has not released these songs on a CD because she doesn't think they belong there, either in terms of quality or in terms of concept. Her standards are very high. (She has written of regretting some early songs that are on CDs, which amazes me. I have no idea which ones those could be.) Anyway, are you aware of the extensive collection of high quality recordings of unreleased songs that are on the Internet Audio Archive with Vienna's sanction, and of the .mp3's on the v.1 version of this site? In particular, the IAA has songs I've never heard Vienna do anywhere else, such as a killer group a capella cover of Pink Floyd's On The Turning Away. If her label let her put together a compilation of these songs off-label, I'm sure the faithful would snap the CD up at shows and through her store, but I don't think such a grab-bag would be up to Vienna's artistic standards. She was very proud of what she accomplished in Inland Territory--wrote something to the effect that she had finally released a CD that was exactly what she hoped it would be--and culling the past would be a turning back from that, in her mind, I would imagine.
Ain't praying for miracles, I'm just down on my knees
Listening for the song behind everything I think I know
And everything I think I know is just static on the radio.

Cooler Near The Lake
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Postby Cooler Near The Lake » Wed Mar 23, 2011 10:54 pm

Hi Fred,
thank you for your reply.
Please don't misunderstand me, I'm actually very happy that Vienna's quality standards are higher than those of other musicians. (Which seems to be one of the reasons that drew me - and probably you? - to this particular artist.) An excellent illustration to your point is the discussion on another thread about "Nothing Left..." with the bottom line that the lyrics Vienna herself considered meaningless crap would have been a major literary achievement to other, minor, singer-songwriters. Couldn't agree more. Well... it's just that even the "2nd grade song material", by Vienna's classification, is still (far) above average. At least to my ears, but obviously not limited to them.
I'm afraid I'm not aware of the internet resources mentioned and would really appreciate it if you could provide a link (thanks in advance!!).
Back to planting seeds...
A true story that may be suitable as a seed idea, or maybe not because Vienna has already written a song related to it, without knowing, is the story about the life and death of polar bear Knut at the Berlin zoo. Before I start boring you by telling the story I'd like to know if anything at all, or how much of it has been reported by US media.
sail your sea

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aaparallel
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Postby aaparallel » Wed Mar 23, 2011 11:35 pm

Cooler Near The Lake wrote:I'm afraid I'm not aware of the internet resources mentioned and would really appreciate it if you could provide a link (thanks in advance!!).


Here are the live recordings on archive.org. Good variety of shows, and you can download whole concerts or individual tracks in various formats.

And here is version 1 of viennateng.com. Click on the chairs in the "et cetera" section for lyrics and maybe even downloads... :D

@Fred: VT said something like Inland Territory is the truest expression of what she wants to do in music. While I personally think she reached some kind of peak in lyric-writing and composition with Dreaming Through the Noise (don't kill me!), I do love the range of styles and themes in Inland Territory - musical freedom that Alex's excellent arrangements and production supported wonderfully.

Boy, are her standards high. It's quite obvious (and wonderful) that her musicianship (especially vocals) and writing have improved greatly with each album and performance, so I'm actually not too surprised that she decided to retire some songs.

I was talking to my friend recently about how I get a kick out of all the disclaimers she makes before some songs. She apologizes for possible "train wrecks" and all that, but then proceeds to melt faces with awesomeness. How many times do we have to tell her that the solo renditions of Love Turns 40 and Pontchartrain are fantastic before she's confident enough to play them solo again? Maybe even try Radio solo? :wink:
"Drowning my pain in lemonade. . . Singing along to 'feelin' alright'"

Fred
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Postby Fred » Thu Mar 24, 2011 4:16 am

aaparallel wrote:@Fred: VT said something like Inland Territory is the truest expression of what she wants to do in music. While I personally think she reached some kind of peak in lyric-writing and composition with Dreaming Through the Noise (don't kill me!), I do love the range of styles and themes in Inland Territory - musical freedom that Alex's excellent arrangements and production supported wonderfully.

I wouldn't kill you. DTTN is my favorite VT disc about 3 days a week, and contains two tracks I seriously yearn to hear live for my first time: Pontchartrain, and Transcontinental 1:30 AM. When asked on FB to name a song that could prove to the world that my favorite songwriter was great, I chose Recessional.
aaparallel wrote:Boy, are her standards high. It's quite obvious (and wonderful) that her musicianship (especially vocals) and writing have improved greatly with each album and performance, so I'm actually not too surprised that she decided to retire some songs.

Vienna's growth as a songwriter over a short period is amazing. Still, looking over the track list for WH, I only see 4 or 5 I've heard live, and I don't see any I wouldn't want to ever hear. I seriously want to hear Drought and Eric's Song.
aaparallel wrote:I was talking to my friend recently about how I get a kick out of all the disclaimers she makes before some songs. She apologizes for possible "train wrecks" and all that, but then proceeds to melt faces with awesomeness. How many times do we have to tell her that the solo renditions of Love Turns 40 and Pontchartrain are fantastic before she's confident enough to play them solo again? Maybe even try Radio solo? :wink:

I'm a total sucker for live music. When all is going well, the communion between audience members and the performer (and with each other, sometimes) can create a transcendent experience, and the level of inspiration of a performance can be amazing (I think of Radio at my last show -- wow!). Even stripped of all of their studio finery, I generally prefer the live versions of songs. In Vienna's output I can think of only one exception to that in my experience; not one you have mentioned.
Ain't praying for miracles, I'm just down on my knees
Listening for the song behind everything I think I know
And everything I think I know is just static on the radio.

Michele
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Postby Michele » Thu Mar 24, 2011 6:06 pm

Cooler Near The Lake wrote:A true story that may be suitable as a seed idea, or maybe not because Vienna has already written a song related to it, without knowing, is the story about the life and death of polar bear Knut at the Berlin zoo. Before I start boring you by telling the story I'd like to know if anything at all, or how much of it has been reported by US media.


US mainstream media has been focusing on Libya and Japan, I think. Saturday was a long time ago, I don't remember anymore what news was popular this weekend :P but I did see the topic trending on Twitter. That said, a friend of mine only shared the news story on Facebook an hour ago, so maybe it isn't well known here.

Cooler Near The Lake wrote:But from the forum or from YT comments it would seem that I'm not the only one who likes, e.g., the Rainwalk Song or Nothing Left For Us To Find.


I figured Sagebrush Valentine must have recorded soundboard audio from the night she performed it, but I rechecked the video and it was camera audio. I think I still haven't seen that song at a show, must request it some time.

I don't think it's been posted yet, but we should have a soundboard recording somewhere of the band version of "Rainwalk Song" - one of many things on my to-do list...otherwise yeah, there should be a soundboard solo version around somewhere, if not just let me know, and that can go on the to-do list too.

tanthalas
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Postby tanthalas » Thu Mar 24, 2011 10:16 pm

The most recent performance of Rainwalk Song that I can recall was at Red Rock last year. I don't know if the recording for that show is fully up yet though.

But in the meantime, you can get a good quality solo version here:
http://people.csail.mit.edu/calvinon/vt/

aaparallel
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Postby aaparallel » Thu Mar 24, 2011 11:27 pm

tanthalas wrote:The most recent performance of Rainwalk Song that I can recall was at Red Rock last year. I don't know if the recording for that show is fully up yet though.

But in the meantime, you can get a good quality solo version here:
http://people.csail.mit.edu/calvinon/vt/


She also played Rainwalk Song at the Fryeburg, Maine show a couple of months ago. Not sure if anyone recorded anything.
"Drowning my pain in lemonade. . . Singing along to 'feelin' alright'"

Cooler Near The Lake
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Postby Cooler Near The Lake » Mon Mar 28, 2011 9:51 pm

...just to finish my thought: I had come up with the "Knut" idea because it was one of the biggest news stories in Germany the weekend when he died, displacing even the civil war in Libya or the disaster in Japan. The challenge would be to comment on this in a way that would be neither sentimental nor cynical, and I couldn't think of a better person to do this than Vienna. The song I was referring to was, of course, Radio.

@ Fred: thank you very much! You'll make other newcomers to the forum happy, too.

@aaparallel:
@Fred: VT said something like Inland Territory is the truest expression of what she wants to do in music. While I personally think she reached some kind of peak in lyric-writing and composition with Dreaming Through the Noise (don't kill me!), I do love the range of styles and themes in Inland Territory - musical freedom that Alex's excellent arrangements and production supported wonderfully.

I won't kill you either - that's precisely what I'm thinking too.
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Postby Michele » Mon Mar 28, 2011 11:06 pm

Perhaps Vienna could write about Knut from the view of Thelonious.

I don't think Vienna has gotten to her lyrical peak yet, which is probably why I never answer those favorite/best song polls. I have high expectations but complete confidence that she can get there, and am looking forward to when I get wowed by what she comes up with.

aaparallel
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Postby aaparallel » Tue Mar 29, 2011 9:20 am

Michele wrote:I don't think Vienna has gotten to her lyrical peak yet, which is probably why I never answer those favorite/best song polls. I have high expectations but complete confidence that she can get there, and am looking forward to when I get wowed by what she comes up with.


Perhaps "milestone" is better than "some kind of peak." I also have high expectations and complete confidence in her ability to push herself to great creative heights. I just think DTtN is a fine album musically and lyrically, and never thought it was "overproduced" or "too polished."
"Drowning my pain in lemonade. . . Singing along to 'feelin' alright'"

Fred
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Postby Fred » Tue Mar 29, 2011 1:58 pm

aaparallel wrote:I just think DTtN is a fine album musically and lyrically, and never thought it was "overproduced" or "too polished."

Is that a knock some people put on it? I totally disagree. Both it and Inland Territory would qualify as highly produced albums, but completely appropriate to the material imho. BTW it's interesting to see that Alex and Vienna as co-producers (is that right?) essentially matched the legendary Larry Klein in terms of production.
Ain't praying for miracles, I'm just down on my knees
Listening for the song behind everything I think I know
And everything I think I know is just static on the radio.

Walking Stranger
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Postby Walking Stranger » Tue Mar 29, 2011 8:16 pm

aaparallel wrote:
Cooler Near The Lake wrote:I'm afraid I'm not aware of the internet resources mentioned and would really appreciate it if you could provide a link (thanks in advance!!).


Here are the live recordings on archive.org. Good variety of shows, and you can download whole concerts or individual tracks in various formats.

And here is version 1 of viennateng.com. Click on the chairs in the "et cetera" section for lyrics and maybe even downloads... :D


For Archive.org :
- list sorted by date :
http://www.archive.org/search.php?query ... sort=-date
- and in details but not updated since May 17th 2010 :
http://walkingstranger.perso.neuf.fr/vt ... rg_v2.html

Enjoy !
WS
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Fred
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Postby Fred » Wed Mar 30, 2011 2:08 am

Walking Stranger wrote:...in details but not updated since May 17th 2010 :
http://walkingstranger.perso.neuf.fr/vt ... rg_v2.html

What an amazing resource! Thanks, WS!
Ain't praying for miracles, I'm just down on my knees
Listening for the song behind everything I think I know
And everything I think I know is just static on the radio.


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