From Within The Imminent Grove: Track 2: Sakura Falling Onto Snow

 

One year ago, in March of 2020, I went into Kyle Everett's Robotboy Records studio in Eugene to start a recording project. The original plan was to do a few demos, translating what there was inside my head into at least some form of basic song structure, and take them home to listen and see which tracks had potential to expand upon and eventually build up into something more than just an idea.

And then the plague hit, and a lot of plans had to be put on hold, for a lot of people. Before the studio closed for the duration of the pandemic, we had five solid basic beat + guitars + vocal song demos recorded over two relaxed four hour sessions, any of which could have been morphed into a completed song with the addition of more instrumentation, and a sixth sketch track of a germinal folky sci-fi tune.

Last summer, after seeing that things weren't going to return to normal anytime soon, I put together a home recording setup in a quiet upstairs bedroom, and began learning how to record, edit, and mix on my own. For a guy whose concept of hi-tech is assembling and blowing up high compression air cooled VW engines and designing and building tube amps made to be detonated - both 1920s level technology - working with 21st century digital recording was a steep learning curve, but the journey was more fun than not.

Note: There should be an embedded YouTube vid below, with the song Sakura Falling Onto Snow, but if you're reading this on a phone or iPad, it's probably not there, Google only knows why. Here's a direct link to the song on YouTube.

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Sakura Falling Onto Snow was little more than a sketch of a song last March, and none of its previously recorded demo tracks were kept. Since then the key has risen two steps and the melody evolved, the tempo slowed a few bpm and new words written, and gradually a somewhat different song emerged from what was once a string of Haikus held together by a guitar pretending to be a Koto.

 
Sakura Falling Onto Snow
Words and music by James Aoyama
Copyright 2021

For Kaede, Audrey, and Takeo
 
Basic tracks recorded at home with vintage gear
Remix, mastering, and additional tracks recorded by Kyle Everett at Robotboy Records, Eugene, Oregon: https://www.robotboyrecords.com/
 
James Aoyama: guitars, vocals, bamboo flutes, intro synthesizer
Kyle Everett: DX7 synth and percussion
Taiko drums by Jim and Kyle

Thanks and credit due to the memory of science fiction and fantasy goddess Ursula K. Le Guin for the title of the collection, "From Within The Imminent Grove".

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Contact James at aoyamajim@gmail.com