Mike Outram

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Brick Wall – Revealing The Inner Fossil

Ran into a wall with an idea a while ago. Not literally, although I might have more luck with it that way. Anyhow, this is forcing me to come up with ways to kick-start den kreativen prozess.

Things I’ve tried so far –

In Stephen King’s book, ‘On Writing’, he talks about the idea/work/whatever as being a fossil, and your job is to reveal it. I like the idea that somewhere out there my track is already complete and exists, and all I’ve got to do is uncover it and record it. It makes me think about the whole of the piece instead of the detail. And that’s no bad thing. We’ll see if it helps though.

In the meantime, check out this scale: G A Bb C# D Eb F# G. It’s like a harmonic minor with a #4. Lydian Harmonic Minor. I’m sure someone out there will know all about it. If you are that person, please enlighten me.

7 responses to “Brick Wall – Revealing The Inner Fossil”

  1. Mike Outram says:

    Slight bit of research…
    I’m sure I’ve used this scale in one of Martin Speake’s tunes, can’t remember what he called it though. Some people call it the Hungarian minor. If so, then what tunes can I hear that use it? Any Hungarians out there? Also Dick Dale’s ‘Misirlou‘ uses this scale from the 5th; a sort of phrygian dominant version of it. Thanks me!

  2. Andreas says:

    There is an eastern scale called hitzakiar that starts on the dominant. D Eb F# G A Bb C# D similar rebetiko scale the pereotikos adds a G# chromatic on there like a be-bop scale. Often in this music there are 9/8 time signatures 4+5 and chord ex. D / D Gm (Eb-A) D/

  3. Mike Outram says:

    Andreas: Nice to hear from you! Now, do you mean the ‘Hitzakiar’ is the scale ‘D Eb F# G A Bb C# D’? [That’s the one used in Misirlou]. Also, it’s a strange co-incidence you mention the above as the piece I’m writing is in 9/8 and could be seen as 4+5. Do you have any recommendations for things to hear?

  4. Andreas says:

    Hey mike nice to be heard! Yes that would be the ‘Hitzakiar’ like the phrygian like the misirlou https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZA5sxQsDon0. This tune is a zeibekiko dance as developed in athens in the 30’s
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sGdu-u9-leU there’s a lot of that scale too in it.. What do you think? :-)

  5. Mike Outram says:

    That’s great stuff! Love the vocals on the 2nd video and the dancing on the 3rd. It’d be great to figure a way of copying some of the vocal inflections on the guitar. I’m sure there must be people who do that already?

    Now, how do I find out more about this music? Where would you start?

  6. Andreas says:

    I think the best way to get aquanted is to get hold of some good bouzouki music in the style of traditional rebetiko. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rebetiko Two important figures are Markos Vamvakaris and Manolis Hiotis. I don’t know of anyone who does stuff like this on guitar that I can recommend. I have a realbook of sorts with some tunes and a scale and grooves book. Here’s links with more scales called ‘dromos’ http://www.greekbouzoukitab.com/Free%20Tabs%20-%20Gifs/Dromo_chart.htm



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