Archive for the ‘projects’ Category

Smiling because 2020 is over!

I just released my newest project on CD Baby. This is my sixth album release over the years.

Very soon the Album/CD titled: “Eye of a Storm” will be available on Spotify, Apple Music, TikTok, Instagram, Amazon Music, YouTube Music, Deezer, Pandora, and about 150 other streaming services globally. Search for Michael S Kennedy and with a bunch of luck it will appear on the list. The songs and CD are cheaper on CD Baby so you can also save a little cash there.

I think I settled on 18 songs since my last release. I post almost everything on this blog first so if you have been here a few times you may have heard many of these tracks. I really like a lot of these new songs and they include some of the best lyrics I have written. In the year we have had, there were few opportunities for my friends to add vocals or instruments to some of my songs as in the past. As a result, all of these songs were written, performed, recorded and mixed by me. While it is a lot of work and I really wish someone would do it for me, it is also a lot of fun and I am proud to look back at this collection. I hope you try a few out because they are all different in their own right.

Happy new Year!

MIDIMike

Michael S. Kennedy

I went searching for years to learn the important things in life.
Some spent in luxury, too many were spent in strife.
Truly believing if I could just find the right questions
Throughout all of humanity, someone would surely know.

What happens after death, are we all alone?
The answers were never written in stone.
What is the real difference between love and faith?
Is it too late with three out at the bottom of the eighth?

The Answer Might Be 42
But it never was about that.
Finding neither question or answer
Nor even a wise old sage or wizard.

To learn how to listen I sought out musicians
To know what is real I studied magicians.
Accountants I’ve met could never measure true cost.
Preparing for challenge I drank with those who have lost.

To see both sides I closely examined the moon.
You can see the ground better from a hot air balloon.
Can’t understand demons if you always talk to saints.
What is freedom if you’ve never known restraints?

The Answer Might Be 42
But it was never about that.
The secret of life is not found in questions
Better served by learning whom to ask.

Holidays are fun with creative people.

I often mention my talented wife and children sprinkled within posts over the years. When the girls were very young we made Christmas and the holidays a creative fest whenever possible. From pumpkin carving parties with over 200 pumpkins, costumes and haunted houses, we put our own flair into everything. We avoided the commercial and traditional.

Each year we would send our many friends a hand-made original Christmas ‘Card’. We would start two months before Christmas to imagine, design and create a unique holiday greeting from our entire family. Many are still hung up or placed on mantels to this day. It is hard to describe so you can get an idea of the projects. One time we made small cloth trees decorated in style with a hook on them so you could hang them as an ornament. Another year we took clear glass ornamental globes and other shaped bobbles and poured paint inside making them sparkle with bright colors and/or glitter on the inside of the glass.

As a musician I built up a small home recording studio over the years. In the lyrics we reference “7 tracks and SMPTE”. I had a digital recorder back then but advanced as it was at the time it only had eight tracks, and one of them you used to record a clock signal so it would sync with the MIDI instruments I had controlled by a hardware sequencer (RECORDING WAS A LOT HARDER IN THOSE DAYS!!!). Every few years I managed to work in a family musical project. Here are two audio recordings we sent as that year’s ‘card’.

This tradition really became a thing and people looked forward to getting their next card, knowing it would be unlike any other they would receive that year, or ever again.

Here is my family recording two Christmas carols for our annual card project. One is a traditional cover of a song you are familiar with. The other is our version of a classic. Even if you aren’t ‘all about Christmas’ and everything, I think you will find this cute and maybe hilarious at the same time.

I wish you all well and hope we can keep lost loved ones close to our hearts and friends and family in our thoughts.

MIDIMIKE

The Kennedy’s carol
The Kennedy’s Original 12 Days

Another installment in my “I Can Explain It To You” series. Here is a link for the first installment: https://midimike.com/2020/06/27/when-the-silent-majority-speaks-out-what-will-they-say/

I am usually silent and often in the minority, but here is what I say.

Questions for a few friends.

I have been working with a few friends to set up on-line jamming from separate locations. I will go into this a bit later for anyone interested. I did spend some time on-line with a program for live sessions. During my testing I had a bit of a wait time so I noodled around on my guitar. While waiting I used a record feature in the program and captured a few segments of my noodling that I liked. It required a name in order to save and in the mood I was in I called it Not Now.

As you know I am not good with names – of any kind – and my song titles usually show that weakness. So now that I had a name for the music pieces, I had to write lyrics sooner or later and was stuck with Not Now as the title!

I finished the basic music tracks in a couple days. Listening to the arrangement I got out my writing tools and came up with the following lyrics. I will smooth out the music and post sooner or later. Here is “Not Now”:

I really can’t wait
For you and this weekend.
Seems like forever
Since we had a minute alone.
No more than a boy
Paralyzed in an ice cream store.
Or that time I cried…..
Until we had to leave the zoo.

Not Now.
I’ve heard it all my life.
Not Now.
Don’t want to hear it again.
Not Now.
It can’t be now, it won’t be then
Not Now.

So many situations
I can’t come close to understand.
More and more people
Have nothing else to say to me.

Not Now.
I’ve heard it all my life.
Not Now.
Don’t want to hear it again.
Not Now.
It can’t be now, it won’t be then
Not Now.

Still
I don’t complain.
Everything I have
I can give away.
Hello
Tell me your name.
You make me smile
Hope I can do the same.
Ask
I do it all day.
It really doesn’t matter
Or what time of day. Still
I don’t complain.
Everything I have
I can give away.

Following my earlier video project for Cincinnati Microwave Inc., I helped in another project for the new version of the company now called Escort Incorporated. I was an employee during the collapse, and it took a couple of years before the company built itself back up and I was re-hired. New owners but it still had the same family feel as more of the original employees returned to work.

In this project I was asked to write music for the soundtrack of a short info-commercial for Escort Inc. I also assisted where I could and eventually appeared in the video as well.

Our company designed, built and sold radar detectors for decades. For years it was a factory-direct order stream. No real resellers. We held a majority of the patents in the industry and manufactured them locally in southern Ohio. I worked in the Call Center starting part-time in Sales and then managing the Sales and Customer Service Departments over the years.

Out newest model was named the “Passport Max” referring to the maximum range it had. Our detectors had great range compared to most competitors, but this was the best to date.

Here is “Take It To the Max”

I wrote the soundtrack for this Escort Inc. Info Commercial as an employee.

This is a dated video I did while I was working at Cincinnati Microwave Inc. My boss knew I was involved with audio and video so they asked me to coordinate the video company they had hired for the project. So instead of my normal job there, I attended meetings to get and idea what management/sales wanted from this project. Then to all the departments to find out what they do and what looks really cool.

Soon I was given a hand full of details, stats and messaging material and the target length. After all the ingredients were there, we had the video company come in for the raw shots. I orchestrated each shot and got our footage while the plant was in production. The Surface Mount Technology (SMT) lines were pretty amazing.

My next step was to write the script gained from the meetings. I selected one of my instrumental original songs for the soundtrack. I showed up to the editing sweet and had each shot planned out and sequenced. They pretty much watched as I lined up the scenes, audio and soundtrack. After video and soundtrack were correct length and finalized, they recorded my voice for the narration track.

There were no cameras allowed inside CMI, so I do not have any pictures through all the years I worked there. Again, the video is dated and the soundtrack warbles enough to give away it’s age, but I still get a kick from seeing old friends, and remembering those days. It was a great place to work and I am still friends with many a former employee.

Thank you for your continued friendship. The story of friends and talented musicians, artists of all kinds was fun in the telling. Followers will know the names and projects I have been thrilled to be involved with. Sacrifices. Heart break. Overwhelming joy.

I have told the story but I also have my archives to share. I started recording with a reel-to-reel tape deck when I was 14. I recorded everything. Everyone. Everywhere (once I had portable recorders lol!)

The medium has changed many times over. Some of the video, for example, was amazing on a small tube television. It just does not stand up to the quality of large screens with high resolution. I did not include the ancient videos on this post because it just looks bad/old.

For some reason I did not take a lot of photographs in this time frame. Unfortunately, I do not have any pictures of the lead vocalist in this recording….. Shoeless Shawn was not with The Chase long before we stopped playing out. So I collected more recent pictures I had taken of group shots of friends, family and fans we have known over the years.

With a little free time on my hands, I have been going through my archives. This is an old recording from my Nakamichi stereo cassette player! I think it is straight off the board. I did not run sound for this recording. Our friend Dave Houston was at the helm.

Everyone stay healthy, and with social distancing, stay at home, grab a drink, and put up your feet. Press play and listen to some live music!

The Chase

My friend’s Night-Time Diving video on YouTube under MikeR998

A good friend of mine lives in Florida and does a lot of scuba diving. I asked if he wanted music for a soundtrack to his videos and sent him a few of my instrumentals. Here is the first video he posted using my compositions. Mike filmed this night time dive at Blue Heron Bridge and it is amazing how many creatures are out and about. I hope you enjoy.