What is Transhuman Highway?

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My name is Jonathan and I’m a Home Recording Enthusiast.

As long I can remember, I’ve been infatuated with the pure joy of pressing record, making some noise, and then playing it back. I got my first boom-box when I was 5 and I vividly recall the hours of entertainment generated by recording the Jonny Griggs Show. My favorite episode is either Interview With Grandpa or Fart, during which I repeat the word fart with every possible variation of vocal inflection for 15 minutes.

I’m not ashamed to admit that my forays into recording have barely advanced beyond Fart in the intervening years. But then, I AM blogging this, so I suppose a certain lack of shame is implicit.

Oh sure, I wasted lots of tape in my teen years, recording my first tentative steps on guitar using a Tascam 4-track, but those were no more than the musical equivalent of doodles in a high-school notebook. The ability to record multiple tracks and play along with the ones I had just recorded, now that was, conceptually, a quantum leap. I was hooked for life.

My fascination migrated to the digital realm when I started messing around with DAWs and VSTis in the late 90s, but, again, this involved little more than pressing record, making noise, and listening to the results. There was a boundless curiosity to be sure, but very little know-how for achieving the preconceived sonic results I imagined before I hit record.

On the surface, it may seem like I have years of solid experience under my belt, but I’d still consider myself an absolute novice when it comes to do-it-yourself music production. For example, it’s only in the last year or two that I understood what a compressor is and why you would ever want to use one. EQ? Aren’t those the little sliders on the front of a fancy stereo system you fiddle with to crank the bass?

So, here I am.

I want to create something. A work. An album. Not necessarily something great, but something unique to me and freestanding and, most importantly, something finished.

I’ve got this idea that blogging the process of writing and recording an album will serve as a kind of contract with myself to follow it through to completion. If I make the commitment to write some journal entries and accumulate a body of text, cranking out something more tangible than – but directly related to – the formless soup of music swimming through my skull, then maybe I’ll be encouraged to continue trying to translate that mental music, even when the going gets rough and unproductive.

No doubt there will be digressions, though it is my intent to keep them strictly confined to the realm of music and home audio production. I will post very basic demos and I will post completed songs, surely, but we’ll also probably end up with some not-so-artful photographs of empty wine bottles next to my Ricky bass.

And on the subject of content…

All of my original work that is posted on this site is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 United States License. That means you’re free to download and use my music however you see fit in any non-commercial context.

I have no aspirations to rock stardom. I have no plans, however delusional or far-fetched, on packaging, distributing, or trying to sell any of the songs I create. I would appreciate a link back or shout out if you post it elsewhere, but I won’t be sending any cease-and-desist letters any time soon for failure to comply.

Won’t you join me for this little experiment? I think it’ll be fun. Feel free to comment, ask questions, tell me I suck, offer tips, advice, encouragement, discouragement. Let’s see how it goes.

I almost forgot. What IS Transhuman Highway? Well, that’s one possible title for the collection of songs I’m putting together. More than that, it’s a common theme I’m shooting for while writing the songs. I’ll dive in deeper in the near future.

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3 Responses to “What is Transhuman Highway?”

  1. corbyanderson Says:

    Griggsy, welcome to the realm! You music is really great man, and I mean that not just because I know you…Congrats on putting up this site, and especially for shirking the intangible weight of PROGRESS!

    Bon voyage Johhny Boy!

  2. cheap trick surrender Says:

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