Sunday, 27 September 2009

Music of the Spheres: Free download of the week podcast

This week's free download is a song I wrote 13 years ago called Music of the Spheres

I wrote Music of the Spheres in 1996 as part of an A Level Performing Arts project. We were asked to create a piece using one of a number of phrases and quotes and I eventually chose to write a song influenced by music of the spheres, which is the idea that the movement of the planets creates a silent form of music. I'm sure the internet has many better descriptions of it! Read what Wikipedia has to say about it at

It took me a while to decide which phrase or quote to choose. It didn't really occur to me to take the phrases at anything other than face value, and two that appealed to me at first were 'Not Waving But Drowning', which I soon found out was the title of a poem, and 'And There Is No Health In Us' which I started to write a song around but never really finished. I still remember the parts of the song I had written and it's possible that I'll finish the song at some point and it will end up on a future podcast. My teacher at the time certainly liked the parts of the song I played to him, and I think actually preferred that song to this one, but I hit a bit of a block while trying to finish it. In the days before the internet, it was not so easy to just Google a reference and I wasn't really interested in finding out where the phrases had originally come from. I've just done a search and it appears that 'And There Is No Health In Us' is from some kind of religious confession, so it's possibly better that I didn't check it at the time!

I found out about the concept of music of the spheres almost by chance, I seem to think by an article in a newspaper at the time, and after researching it a little more was inspired to write this song almost in one go.

Originally written for guitar, this version of Music of the Spheres uses piano, violin and just a little bit of guitar. It was recorded using Garageband on my Mac Pro which is now feeling well again after its replacement hard drive. However, I started to get too overconfident in my new found computing power and after leaving it on for several days and working it hard with video, music and photo editing and uploading, it finally decided it was going to crash. I'd forgotten to save the last few days recordings, so lost a few days of work on the song! It was a mixed blessing though, because I'd hit a wall with trying to play the violin (an instrument I can't really play, so I have to record numerous takes and edit together the best bits, helped out by pitch correction and reverb effects) and get a nice vocal take. The computer crashed pretty much as I'd decided that the song was as good as I was going to get it, and it left me with just the piano and guitar parts. The rerecorded vocal and violin parts are much better than the first attempts.

As always, let me know what you think either by leaving a comment on the blog or in the Facebook Comments box at, or email me at You can download the podcast on my Download of the Week page, or through iTunes.

Dayve Dean's free download of the week podcast



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