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Taxi Music....Backward - The Track I Forgot to Submit! 

Wow, I was disappointed. I wrote a short piece of music for a specific pitch looking for "election" music.

I uploaded it but FORGOT to pitch it! Now what to do with it? I know, make a silly video featuring my exciting original score.

Here's the track on it's own:

 

The Challenge and Fun of Scoring to Picture  

I've always wondered what it would be like to "score to picture". You know, like John Williams, Randy Newman. Then this opportunity came along...

The Westworld Scoring Competition

Oh, sure there was stuff to win for the lucky participants out of thousands chosen by the creative minds behind HBO's "Westworld". Who does't want to win?! I'm a beginner, so I wanted to have some fun, at least. 

I gave myself the whole month to finish it, interspersed amongst my more serious musical efforts writing tracks to specific industry pitches. I figured I could do 1 minute of music per week or so. Live performances for Hotel California were/are shelved for the time being, so off I went in the land of film/TV composer!

I must say, it was a creative rush! I sensed/chose a tempo by the pace of the action, trying to weave in and out of dialogue and gunfire. I aimed (ha ha) to use the gunfire actually as a percussion instrument all it's own! 

Well, here it is... [I noticed too late after I bounced the finished video that one of my "Buh's" in my big drum "buh-BUH's" did not play for some reason. ]

Compilations and Steve's Top Spotify Tracks So Far 

Years ago I signed a bunch of songs with an online music library.

One way of presenting the music they represent is by making compilation albums with songs of multiple artists. That's why you may see my name appearing on all these different genre-specific collections on places like Spotify, Apple Music, and the like. The video below show what's this looks like on Spotify, for instance.

So any tracks of mine you find on the internet that don't appear on an album or single that I put out, that's how they got there! 

Here's an example of my top-played tracks apparently on Spotify.

Story Behind The Song - MY HAPPY PLACE 

The blog series that highlights a selected song from my latest album, "III" 

Episode 2 : MY HAPPY PLACE

The seed of this tune came firstly not from artistic inspiration - "Oh, I must capture this song immediately while the muse flows freely through my ever-sensitive creative soul!!" - Oh no, my friends.

There's a song that I really like by Christ Stapleton called, "Whisky and Me". I decided one day to take the form of the song, rhyme scheme, etc and just write something in the same pattern. As an exercise and a way to "jump start" the writing process. First thing I did was search for a title with the same syllables as "whisky and me" from list of title ideas I'm constantly adding to. I decided on "My Happy Place". I then flipped the sentiment - the former song was sad, mine would be happy.

Click play:

I just started my usual "just writing anything until something sticks" (if anything even would that day). I remember sitting on the floor, "reaching" for the possible song that might be floating around "in the room". Stuff started appearing on my yellow pad:

"Fridge is humming" ?- We have an older fridge thta keeps chuggin along!
 "Browning onions smell like heaven in a pan"? True story. Love it.
"Pillow laying on the floor" - There it was to my left, the couch throw pillow
"That Christmas present that never made it out the door"? There it was, over to my right. 
"Puppy paws" - 2 dogs, 8 paws in the household!

The "tie comes off" bit is a bit of a fabrication. I don't wear a tie and come home from the office every day. (Although I've been know to wear one onstage)

In many songs, the "hook" comes right at the beginning of the chorus. I let "My Happy Place" close out every verse.

The stuff about Disney and New York City in the bridge? That's me. My happy places. But the bridge closes out with very best kind of "happy place"

And of course, the ultimate "happy place" in Verse 3.

-----

It was suggested in a songwriting critique session to rewrite the bridge. But I left it as is to move to another song. Someone else may not want to recorded it, but it has a whole not of "me" in it, so I figured I'd keep it for myself.

-----

There you have it! A song that might never have been born that day if I hadn't practiced a little pro-writer discipline and shown up to the solo "writing session"! 

Check out the photo below. I was surprised to be reminded in my scribblings that "My Happy Place" started at the beach but ended up in the living room! 

I love songwriting! How about you?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here's the song pattern inspiration for "My Happy Place":

Get the album "III" HERE

Story Behind The Song - I LOVE YOU MORE 

The blog series that highlights a selected song from my latest album, "III"

Episode 1 : I LOVE YOU MORE

At the time I wrote this fun little song, ukuleles were still prevalent in popular music. So I purchased a nice-sounding, small, Hawaiian ukulele and started getting busy on a "uke" song of my own. I wrote two actually, but this one made it to the finish first. It's one of my personal favorites on this album. All vocals and instruments performed and recorded by yours truly. 

Click on the Play button.

Get the album "III" HERE

Taxi Music Forward - Public Domain Christmas Songs 

..Which means: “Hey cool track, I'm going to pass this on. It may be usable to the TV/Film person that will hear it next." 

And just like that, another forward to follow the previous "Urban Dramedy" track. This one has been around for a while. You may have heard it. After it was written for a previous pitch, I never heard back, so I released it as a Christmas single. There's even a video!

PUBLIC DOMAIN CHRISTMAS SONGS (In Various Genres) with Male or Female Vocals are needed by a growing Music Library that’s actively pitching to a number of high-end Films and TV shows. Send them great, Mid-to-Up-Tempo Songs that you’d expect to hear on playlists with artist/songs like (but not limited to): “Jingle Bells” by Tiffany Alvord: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lDMmJ6u0R3w “Silent Night” Justin Bieber: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9WZI4g7qKrg “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas” by Hannah Kerr: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q_TdWsWPD6E Jingle Bells (Rock Version): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JTuXPUP06H0 Do you have a Rockin’ version of Jingle Bells? How about a stripped-down acoustic Singer/Songwriter-style version of Silent Night, or a Jazz version of Joy To the World? If so, this Music Library wants to hear it! Please submit well-crafted Public Domain Covers that capture the true essence of the holiday season, with a great overall performance that sounds really fresh and current. Please stick to the original melody and lyric of the song(s) you choose to cover and submit. You’d be wise not to send something that’s too whacky or outside-of-the-box for this pitch.

 

An "Evening" At Notre Dame - Paris 

On the last day of our trip to Paris, as I had just exited a gift shop (somewhere around where this crooked window photo on the left was taken) ......I get a message from our Airbnb host,

 "Hi Steve, I heard about the terrorist attack in front of Notre Dame. I hope you are fine. Any way I heard that only the terrorist was injured. Just try to avoid Notre Dame area because around that area I heard that everything is blocked..."

I can't say I was surprise. Alarmed, but not surprised. A lone, hammer-wielding man attacks police and is very quickly brought down. 

Okay, so when returning to our rented place, we'll go around the area.

Then we realized, "What about the concert we had tickets for that same evening being held inside the gargoyle protected cathedral?"

On our way back to our "home" area across Point de Sully and over the tiny island of île Saint-Louis, back to the Latin Quarter, we passed police directed traffic jams. (Below)

Somber, overcast sky hangs over Notre Dame just hours after the incident. (Below)

Stopping at our favorite, La Methode Restaurant, we pondered our next adventure. Will the concert go on? Would the performers bow out? Our waitress, as well as an employee who just arrived, said they'd probably have the square in front of Notre Dame closed. I called Shakespeare & Company book store near the river Seine (a prior visit told me they spoke English) to have them tell me it looks like the area is open. 

We decided to see for ourselves. 

We were rewarded with an amazing experience. Under heavy security, the likes of which I have never seen before in person, all patrons were ushered into a side door. The concert, Ordo Virtutum by Hildegarde Von Bingen, would go on! (see below) (I filmed a short video excerpt of concert at very bottom of this post)
[Ordo Virtutum is about the struggle for a human soul, or Anima, between the Virtues and the Devil...] *Wikipedia . 

With the cathedral's outside perimeter bathed in a halo of armed police, the vocalists on the altar, and vocalists entering from behind, it was as though angels were all around us! 

Still trying to put this night into words, but I'll just say that I felt part of a world of peace-loving citizens who aren't about to let the evil in the world win out, because in the end, it doesn't! 

Heading back to dessert (and a beer for me), we passed a welcomed line of vehicles manned by the men and women who deal with this on the front lines every day. (see below)

We were safe and I was so deeply moved by this, our last evening in the City of Light.

ThrowBackThursday - Adventures in NYC 2009 

ThrowBackThursday Post- Looking back on a blog post of recent yesteryear (and bringing it over from the old website for further reference). 
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A fast-paced slide show of my visit to NYC in the Summer of 2009. I've already been again (2010) so guess I'm a little behind! This may be boring to you. unless you're a family member, but I'll post it anyway for posterity! If you like Wicked, Sinatra, Disney, you'll like the music!

As is my habit all photos were taken with my simple phone camera. I shot numerous angles of some of the same shots and ended up putting them all in, to make it even more boring for you!  Some are blurry, dark, and even backwards, but there ya have it.

I really, really "heart" NYC!

Blue Sky Riders, Kenny Loggins, Idina Menzel 

Within the space of a week a got a chance to witness on stage two of my favorites (three actually).

Kenny Loggins with his new band Blue Sky Riders at Coach House, San Juan Capistrano, CA

Kenny and I "go way back" (Definition: He was a musical inspiration - an idol as they say - in my formative, unformal musical studies) Some real good music happening with Blue Sky Riders. Here's a video, the only one, from the very show I was at:



Idina Menzel at Hollywood Bowl, Los Angeles, CA

I've been a fan since, a number of years ago while on the road, I found a used CD of the Wicked Musical in a Goodwill store in downtown Bakersfield for 25 cents! I loved her voice, but had know idea who she was. I was like, "Who is this voice?"

Very cool finding videos  of the concerts you were at on YouTube. :)


 

A 'slightly' bad-composition shot I took from the 4th row



 

"LET'S TAKE THE STAIRS" - SteveProbst.net Track of the Month 


All tracks (except guitars) played on my now since replaced Korg Triton Keyboard. All vocals/instruments recorded and mixed on a Korg D1600MKII 16-Track digital recorder. (Replaced that as well!)

Inspiration: Started with the title stemming from my desire for exercise when on the road as in: "Forget the elevator, take the stairs and give the heart a little jolt". Then I built the song's setting around a trip to San Francisco. I've actually been there a couple times. And there's bonus! It's a ThrowBackThursday post.

"Let's Take The Stairs" is included on my album "Window Seat" available at:

"Let's Take The Stairs" on CD Baby: http://tinyurl.com/cwtz7rq

"Let's Take The Stairs" on iTunes: http://tinyurl.com/c3uayeh

"Let's Take The Stairs" on GooglePlay: http://tinyurl.com/ckpf3pj

"Let's Take The Stairs" on Amazon: http://tinyurl.com/dy9y2vu

"Let's Take The Stairs" on Bandcamp: http://tinyurl.com/c8s59ru

What Are You Doing?......Transitions 

I know: Silence.

[Insert cricket noise]

It's been a Summer of transition for the Probst family. And I've been home (ie. not traveling for work] for all of it! (A good thing)
 

Ms. Probst

My daughter Emily, within the past week or two, got her teaching credential, then started a brand new job as band director for a nearby middle school.
Son, Jonathan, just completed his last year marching for Phantom Regiment Drum & Bugle Corps. We got to witness this "graduation-like" event(s) over this last weekend in Indianapolis. Emily "aged-out" two years ago. As parents, we're super proud of our kids when they follow there passions and dreams, yes? 


Jonathan is at 5:29 in video
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My wife, Liz, being the stellar teacher that she is, has had the summer off naturally. ("Hey, who is this person hanging around all the time?")

...That would be me, Mr. Husband-home-off-the-road.

I've been thankfully working a lot of local gigs, mostly private though.

Oh! I also auditioned for a Beatles Tribute/Theatre act, believe or not. I know one of the co-creators who was excited that I would give it a shot, otherwise I maybe wouldn't have done it. They were looking for a George Harrison. They chose someone else that auditioned, but you know what? I've got a great "Taxman" tone set up now! 

Hey - who wants to hear some new music? Okay, hold on. I'll be getting back to it shortly.
  
 
 

@probstmangg #dci #phantomregiment #home #dog

A video posted by @steveprobstmusic on

TBT - Standing On The Corner In....Where Else? 

Looking back on a blog post of recent yesteryear (and bringing it over from the old website for further reference). Some of you may have seen this video before. Now at 27,000+ views!:

I had a little bus-travel-time fun editing some flip-cam video shot and narrated by our (Hotel California-A Salute To The Eagles) front-of-house sound engineer, Kevin Lovelady, while we were in Winslow, AZ for our annual performance at the Standing On The Corner Festival in September of 2009.
 
WARNING! This is actual footage of actual standing on the actual corner! Also featuring Scott Fronsoe & myself, Steve Probst. (Also produced by a very amateur film crew at work-I'll stick to my "day job")


"AWAY IN A MANGER" - Christmas Cover Video 


Here's my spin on the classic Christmas favorite. I released "Away In A Manger" back in 2012 and just posted a video to go along with it.

I occasionally record tunes requested for specific industry song pitches. A case in point is this rendition of "Away In a Manger". Though it was passed on for the pitch, I can now offer it as a single-song download for you. Their loss, your Christmas-cheery gain!

I ended up giving my self-produced version a bit of a "Island" feel. Enjoy it annually!

Vocals and all instruments by Steve Probst
Recorded and produced by Steve Probst

"Away In A Manger" on iTunes: http://tinyurl.com/b9782bd

"Away In A Manger" on Amazon: http://tinyurl.com/pxumb95

"Away In A Manger" on CDBaby: http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/steveprobst2

"Away In A Manger" on Google play: http://tinyurl.com/mfc79rm

"Away In A Manger" on Bandcamp: http://tinyurl.com/ol87pf2

"Away In A Manger" on Spotify: http://open.spotify.com/album/4QXgwl7Un7ryqOd7HTbBiT

"MISSING YOU" - SteveProbst.net Track of the Month 



My second single, an original this time, following my release of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah"
I aimed to encapsulate in this song the emotions of life on the road as a touring musician.

The song was written in 2009. After getting sidetracked writing other tunes, I finally put all the instruments and a plethora of vocals together to release so the song just doesn't languish in obscurity within my stash of unfinished creations forever!

Vocals and all instruments by Steve Probst
Recorded and produced by Steve Probst
Mastering: LANDR.com

"Missing You" on iTunes: http://tinyurl.com/npf7gks

"Missin You" on Amazon: http://tinyurl.com/no9aluh

"Missing You" on CDBaby: http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/steveprobst5

"Missing You" on Google play: http://tinyurl.com/mj3te6t

"Missing You" on Bandcamp: http://tinyurl.com/pm9lahu

"Missing You" on Spotify: http://open.spotify.com/album/3D0BQLCbRZYelZgIJviUM2

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Read the "Missing You" Blog: http://tinyurl.com/m2v6dn5

"Missing You" debuts on internet radio: http://steveprobst.net/home/blog/october-7-2014-missing-you-debuts-on-internet-radio

"HALLELUJAH" - SteveProbst.net Track of the Month 

Here's the video to go along with my single of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah"


My version of the Leonard Cohen penned classic.
I recorded this song for a music industry pitch (TaxiMusic.com) a while back and then it was forwarded for a further listen by the party looking for covers of this song to use in a film or TV project. Well, I never heard back and I decided, after getting some real nice feedback from a lot of you, to put it out myself as a single!

Vocals and all instruments by Steve Probst
Recorded and produced by Steve Probst
Mastering: LANDR.com

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"Hallelujah" on iTunes: http://tinyurl.com/pj8g5p8

"Hallelujah" on Amazon: http://tinyurl.com/l2r336c

"Hallelujah" on CDBaby: http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/steveprobst4

"Hallelujah" on Google play: http://tinyurl.com/oquykzj

"Hallelujah" on Bandcamp: http://tinyurl.com/ofdo65j

"Hallelujah" on Spotify: http://open.spotify.com/album/0stVefODeAfwiYYLS7q2X2

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Read the Hallelujah Blog: CLICK HERE

Read Blog #2 "The Unlikely Ascent of 'Hallelujah': CLICK HERE

Reviews:

"His heart felt Hallelujah's sung with his unique velvety voice leaves one hypnotized, mesmerized. It is impossible to describe with mere words. Stunning. Haunting. Enchanting. Moving, perhaps. Once you hear it, it's in your brain forever..." ~ Marilyn, AZ

"Man, this song is great. I know its been done over and over but it is really great." B. Hobbs, PA

Some People Want to Fill the World with Silly Love Song Bass Solos! 

I was listening yesterday to what I would call one of my Top Ten favorite albums off all time (I have no idea what number one is, or any of the other numbers for that matter at the moment. This one is just that loved by yours truly!)....."Brother to Brother by Gino Vanelli. (The main single off this album was "I Just Wanna Stop". Remember that song?)

It struck me - where else could you hear a bass solo in a love song?!






BASS PLAYING FRIENDS, keepers of the low end, and all others; with Jimmy Haslip on bass, here it is:

New Single! - "MISSING YOU" 


I'd like to present you with my new single, "Missing You". I've had a pretty busy schedule, so releasing one song by itself (as I did with "Hallelujah") is doable to continue getting new material out there.

This picture on the right represents the start of this song

Now I don't remember if these were THE hotel keys that inspired the track or I snapped a picture of one many sets for future reference. (This also became the "album" art)

The song was written about 2009. After getting sidetracked writing other tunes, I finally put all the instruments and a plethora of vocals together to release so the song just doesn't languish in obscurity within my stash of unfinished creations forever. 


Listen to the preview HERE. Buy if you like it and please share! Thanks!! 

(Only available as a digital download. Please contact me if you are... "digitally challenged(?)".  I want everybody to be able to enjoy this.)

CLICK HERE!

"SERENGETI STOMP" - SteveProbst.net Track of the Month 

Well, it's been over a year since the last "Track of the Month"! Is calling it "Track of the Year" a little too pretentious? Anyhoo...

"Serengeti Stomp" is the first time for me making guitar loops - short guitar phrases digitally recorded, edited, strategically (or psychotically) placed within a musical composition. I started this track on my laptop in a hotel room at the Suncoast Casino Resort, Las Vegas, Nevada....."What happens in Vegas", comes to fruition elsewhere, I guess!

Written, Recorded, Produced, Mixed, Mastered by myself.