Tag Archives: singer-songwriter

No One Has Heard These Tracks – now MQA CD online at CD Baby

New Release 2017 – Two Track Mind – Solo Acoustic!
http://cdbaby.com/cd/davidelias19

No one has heard these solo acoustic tracks. They are recorded with just 2 microphones (2 tracks!) on voice and guitar. There is nothing edited. Recorded and mixed digitally as hi-res, then mastered for CD release (16/44.1).

MQA Encoding provided by MQA Ltd., UK greatly restores the source PCM recordings to the natural ambient nature of the room and performance. Mic’d close and intimate. Solo Acoustic.
Hear it for yourself…. Online CD is for sale.

Plays from any CD player and sounds way acoustic live studio!

Plays with Studio Authenticated MQA from CD or ripped (ALAC, FLAC, WAV, AIF). I don’t know where else MQA CD’s are being sold, but here’s one online through good old CD Baby…. Aloha!

davidelias-twotrackmind-3

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Illegalized: $5

MQA – The Room – Lo-Res got better…

The press on MQA is full of a lot of things but not too many of them have to do with how it sounds. I’ve been listening to CDs since you have, since the beginning, early 80’s. I wouldn’t even buy them until the 90’s cause they didn’t sound good. My cassettes made from my vinyl sounded a lot better to me.

I didn’t have to read about it to know that then.

In fact I didn’t like digital audio until I got introduced to DSD in 1999. It finally sounded better than anything I had heard before!

But CDs and CD quality (and worse: MP3, AAC) didn’t go away. I tried :)

I have made a lot of recordings over the years since the 80’s. Even the 70’s. They started on tape, 1/4″. Even multitrack cassette. So so quality. Good times. Then 8 track digital (not 8-tracks, well yes in my bus in the 70’s) at 16/48. Not bad and way good enough for early DIY and online 1995…

I made those recordings for early CDs, unreleased stuff, and then started recording shows using 1-bit Sony TCD-8 and TCD-10 DAT machines at 48kHz. Not bad! Often these were recorded through a single strereo mic I setup in the room in front of the band. To capture the sound we were making that day with those sets (which weren’t written down usually).

Guess how MQA Ltd describes their tech/product:

“MQA is a revolutionary new technology borne from a simple desire: to bring the listener as close as possible to the artist’s original performance.”

Was I interested in how that sounded when I first read about it? Yes I sure was!

So I have gone back to most if not all my earlier digital recordings and even some tape transfers to PCM and worked with MQA Ltd. to have them encoded as MQA. It sounds a lot better than what I had listened to as CD masters and the like before. Sometimes a lot better.

Here’s what I don’t read the press saying about MQA, but that I find extremely valuable about this technology…

When the master being encoded as MQA is CD quality at 16/44.1, the MQA time resolution repairs (my term) done to the master which remove the audible pre-echo ringing and maybe some post-echo ringing are distinctly heard as huge improvements to the sound, ALL WITHOUT USING ANY SPECIAL EQUIPMENT.

No one has to buy anything such as new audio gear to hear these improvements on the natural sound of the recording.  You don’t need a new software media player or a new DAC or wires or computer or anything else. You just play it through what you usually play music through (computer, phone) or burn it to CD! I think you will hear the difference.

An MQA DAC such as the Meridian Explorer2 (PCM up to 192k for $299 US) will unfold hi-res masters to restore and play the higher frequencies. These sound great too!

This is in addition to what I mentioned earlier. But for CDs as masters (original 16/44.1 recordings) there was no hi-res (high frequencies) recorded or mastered. I find the MQA DAC further improves even these (CD) masters somewhat, but it’s not required.

Here’s what a recent listener who was comparing my “Time Forgets” MQA Master against the original CD said. This was on a Macbook, with no DAC or any other special gear, just iTunes playing the 2 versions of the album, alternating and comparing each song:

“oh wow – oh my god
clearer crisp sharp, gawd!! no question
wow! you can hear everything better, everything being all the instruments
sharper clearer you can hear every distinctive instrument, awesome”

I’ve gotten a lot of comments like these from both straight A music lovers as well as from hard core audiophiles.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

So I am offering you a 75% discount on the $20 MQA Master download of a live recording of a full band made on a TCD-8 using a single $99 Sony stereo mic setup on a mic stand maybe 6-8 feet in front of the band playing.

Illegal Copy #2 – David Elias & The Great Unknown
Recorded in San Gregorio General Store, 2002

Click Here To Preview or Download the Illegal Copy #2 album…

These 9 songs were a lot of fun to play in the Store that day and were recorded at 48kHz then mastered by me at 44.1kHz. What you can download for $5 is the MQA version of the master encoded by MQA Ltd. (http://www.mqa.co.uk).

I made some bootleg copies of the recording back then for some friends and the musicians but it didn’t sound quite good enough to me to release as a CD. The energy and performance were good, just the sound wasn’t really “the room”. Now it is. Close enough for an illegalized copy :)

This is a roots low-level basic recording. It’s not hi-res. But it sounds like the room when I hear it now after all these years. I’ve had audiphile comments on this same recording expressing their appreciation and enjoyment of the natural honest and ambient characteristics of this master. That’s all I could hope for.

Use this PROMO CODE for 75% off:   illegalized   (no capital letters necessary).

Share this with anyone you want. The PROMO expires on midnight (UTC) 8/31/2016. The CD download is $5.

I now have 17 MQA Mastered titles (mostly albums) online to preview and download here:

http://davidelias-mqa.com

Aloha to all and thanks for listening,

DE

New Album! David Elias – Acoustic Trio DSD Sessions

David Elias - Acoustic Trio DSD Sessions

David Elias – Acoustic Trio DSD Sessions

It’s Like You Were There In The Studio…

David Elias – “Acoustic Trio DSD Sessions”Released 11/04/2013

Download these 14 original songs as both DSD (DSF) and 24/88.2 FLAC audio files for the price of $24.95.

You get both formats! FLAC files are hi-rez lossless downsamples that can be played by all popular PC/Mac media players including JRiver, Winamp, Audirvana, Windows Media and many others.

http://www.davidelias.com

“What excellent compositions…exceptional performances…and rich, harmonic, organic sound, as natural and mellow via DSD as one could wish…10 stars…Love it, big time” – Dr. David W. Robinson, Positive Feedback

This collection of original material from the independent acoustic singer-songwriter David Elias is a special organic, natural sounding set of pure DSD recordings created at the Slipperworld Studios in La Honda, California (www.slipperworld.net). These 14 tracks feature David Elias (acoustic/vocal/harmonica), Charlie Natzke (acoustic/vocal) and Chris Kee (upright bass, Blue Coast Records).

This Acoustic Trio session release was captured in the studio on a single day as a series of live takes without any edits or overdubs. It was recorded by Charlie Natzke to no more than 8 tracks directly to a Sonoma DSD Workstation using Meitner converters.

The essence of the performance is the ambient and acoustic nature of all the instruments and vocals including natural resonance, harmonics, decay, and microphone bleed and decay using minimal micing without any artificial or digital effects.

Acoustic Trio DSD Sessions” was recorded on a sunny day among the redwoods with the windows open. The musicians recorded standing roughly arms length from each other in a small circle with no isolation. A pair of microphones were positioned overhead to capture a stereophonic image of “the room”. This was used as the only source of natural reverb in the mix.

The songs were mixed as DSD using a Sony mixer card in the Sonoma workstation. These tracks have never left the original DSD format, even as analog conversions for mixing!

As a result, what you hear from these pure DSD master recordings are the natural live performances of the trio, as if you were standing or sitting with them in the studio during the session.

Songs: 01 – If I Had My Way, 02 – Ohlone Dream, 03 – Above The Creek, 04 – Crossing, 05 – Changing Down, 06 – Take Me Down The Road, 07 – The Riddle Song, 08 – Rodeo On A Ridge, 09 – Summer Wind, 10 – One More Savior, 11 – Good Old Days, 12 – Vision Of Her, 13 – Transcendental Deprivation Part II Straw Dream, 14 – Morning Light Western Town

David Elias began recording to DSD in 2000 using a similar minimal microphone setup directly to the prototype 2-channel Sony SACD Project DSD mastering/archiving prototype workstation. Working with Gus Skinas (www.SuperAudioCenter.com) he went on to record live studio performances with a large acoustic band to 8-tracks in 2002. This resulted in the landmark independent hybrid multichannel SACD “The Window“. The followup award-winning SACD “Crossing” was released in 2005. Both SACDs received the coveted “Brutus Award for DSD Excellence” from Dr. David W. Robinson, Positive Feedback.

These and other DSD Downloads are available from his website at www.davidelias.com as well as from www.SuperHiRez.com and www.HighDefTapeTransfers.com.

David Elias - DSD Pioneer - Bio

songs from the future past – independent acoustic roots

We all have roots – and the more I think about it (just in these past 3 or so seconds) the more that could be a lot of what we are all really about.  Not the roots themselves, the recognition that we have them…

Independent Acoustic Roots

Independent Acoustic Roots

I have a song with lyric:

“where you are is what you are
geography is everything”

I’ve always believed that history occurs (as much as anyone can really remember what happened which is not that good a recall IMO) very influenced by where it occurs. The where almost determines the what in other words.

With that in mind, I wrote a bunch of songs in the early 90’s while living in the SF Bay Area and was very focused on a few different musical things that I had carried within me at first and then they popped out in spectral ways. It was a spectral root!

These things included: songwriting, acoustic coffehouse-like performances, Irish music, digital recording and DIY CD production, music sharing on the brand new Internet.

They all kind of came into my life at the same time and people I hadn’t known before came in with them. Some of the most spiritual friendships I know grew out of those years. Over the years since a lot has happened to me musically, but even though I had been playing acoustic guitar at that point for a good 20 years (yeah I know) and had written some songs and played lots of shows in different guises, nothing was quite like the acoustic flower that bloomed in the 90’s in my universe.

friendship

friendship

I was introduced to some heavy magic in the forms of: Irish/Celtic music that was being played by strange faces and then suddenly friends and brothers in the SF pubs and elsewhere in the Bay Area; The art of home recording on digital media with simple but high quality results in a digital/CD world; The World Wide Web that quickly reached out to independent musicians like myself and said “put your music up here – you can get listened to by all kinds of people all over the world including DJ’s”. It also said “there’s a heck a good other musicians doing the same thing right now — check ’em out.”.

So I did. Day or night for many years. I learned how to create a web site writing HTML in a text editor like Notepad. At the beginning, I was encouraged by my friend Gus Skinas to record my songs. I said I didn’t have the means to get involved with any studio or whatever was invovled… He said I could do it myself at home. Now I was interested in that!

So a short time later I had borrowed some equipment from Gus and another musical buddy Roger Powell. Before long I had a home studio setup in a bedroom in my home. I started learning how to record myself on an 8-track Tascam DA-88 that Rog loaned me. I had recorded myself on 4-track cassette since the 80’s and lots of other stereo and multitrack recordings to tape dating back to the 70’s.. But this was pretty new and wonderful.

The result over time with the help of others was a home produced CD that was professionally manufactured by Discmakers (also new at the time). It was called “Lost in the Green”.

reach

reach

Now a good 20 years later I have traversed the landscapes of MP3.com, DIY CD’s, CDBaby, iTunes, podcasts, webcasts, Amazon, digital music players, myspace, Hi-Rez, SACD, videos, DSD Downloads, tons of shows, and everything in between. The paths are many.

The message was always for me Independent Acoustic – a term I came up with in the 90’s after getting asked 828 times by human and non-human queries what genre I was in.

This summer I had to kind of stop and take a look over one shoulder or another to see a little more of where I had come from with music in a public interconnected world. I rediscovered some of those early acoustic recordings that marked the beginning of a long and windy adventure into the heart of much of what I’ve always been about.

So I took that time capsule of recordings and made it a release for downloads…I’m hoping it will be available in time for the Autumn Equinox in a couple days on September 22nd. Equinox is a great event to recognize. I’ve worked with friends many times staging large music and party events on the one Equinox or another. All special legend moments and memories…

So releasing my next new/old CD type album on the 2013 Equinox (which I think occurs at 4:44pm EDT for you spiritual numerologists..) is a good omen for me. It’s a new path with old and trusty, well if not trusty at least not rusty roots.

skyline1

skyline1

There are 16 songs on the album. Many of them appeared on my first CD “Lost in the Green” which unlike all my other CD’s since (about 8) never went online to iTunes. So to most people “out there” it’s all new. To those people “back there” it is actually still 90+% new. This is because I used only my solo acoustic takes from the early recordings I was trying out then. There are 12 of my songs, some of which never appeared on any CD/SACD I released. There are 4 songs by Townes Van Zandt, an icon of Acoustic and Music Independence for me for all time.

The full announcement for all this will come out sometime soon when everything online is hooked up and working.

But in the meantime, I’m still an independent acoustic musician and I have something new to share with anyone who wants to listen.

So….. here is a link to a song called “Field of Wood” that I recorded in 1993 or 1994, a nice 20 years ago. It never made it onto “Lost in the Green” (a different live version with Roger Powell and Scott Beynon recorded in San Gregorio General Store came out in 1998 on “Time Forgets”).

“Field of Wood” is for me a lot of stories wrapped into one song — so I want to share that one from this new release “Independent Acoustic Roots” with everyone here.

https://www.hightail.com/download/OGhlU2VuT2JqY3FVbDhUQw

This is a FLAC file in an HD format of 88.2kHz sample, 24-bit (24/88.2).

I hope you download it and listen to it and then think about any music that has been in your life for 20+ years or 10+ years or some meaningful amount of time and has carried you through things you could never have survived as a rooted individual without.

That’s where all this is coming from.

Aloha!

PS – you can check my home page http://www.davidelias.com to find anything about downloads, DSD or otherwise, that I’m doing at any point. You can also sign up on my email list there which helps keep the new news going out. I only put a helter-skelter version of things here and on Facebook.  Thanks for listening!

PPS – I just realized (coming back inside) that I have to send you the link to another track from Independent Acoustic Roots:  Season of the Fall!  Have a great Equinox!!! *****

https://www.hightail.com/download/OGhlU2V1ZDVWRCswYjhUQw

“out into the cool of the evening strolls the pretender” – jackson browne

Image

PART I in a series: The Art of Listening

I started listening to Jackson Browne somewhere right in the knee of the curve as they say. He had some killer albums from 1972 (“Saturate Before Using”) through 1977 (“Running on Empty”) that caught me at just the right time in life to listen to a poetic troubadour with many of the same killer musicians backing him as other favorite singer-songwriters of mine at the time like JT, Warren Zevon, Karla Bonoff, Arlo Guthrie, Willis Alan Ramsey,….

So Jackson Browne often rode on my turntable all night (with automatic replay! what a feature!!) for quite a few teenage years including the first years I started performing acoustic in front of audiences which were mostly college crowds but also dinner crowds.

I was talking to someone today about technology and realized as I was saying it that none of us know what we know without having listened to others pretty carefully at whatever times of our lives we were learning. That is, you can’t learn everything you know without listening. But at certain points, some of us or maybe most of us no longer feel like we have to listen to what others are saying very much if ever. It is a point of defiance that says, to quote another famous troubadour “All right, I’ve had enough, what else can you show me?”. I take that rhetorical question as one of irony and defiance where the answer is (obviously) “nothing”.

So if we have nothing left to learn, we have nothing left to listen to.

I hope I don’t get to that point.

To me the point is that I will have to remind myself more and more of this risk of turning off my inner-listener as more and more years go by. I hope that I can just recall spinning things like “For Everyman” and “Late for the Sky” and “The Pretender” on my dusty turntable between maybe the hours of midnight and 5am and just letting it play over and over while I was sleeping but still listening and carrying it around with me the whole next day in whatever background landscape it wanted to become and change as I changed with the weather and the world around me but always finding a place in my ear to tell me something I needed to learn.

“Doctor eyes have seen the years
And the slow parade of fears without crying
You must help me understand
I have done all that I could
To see the evil and the good without hiding
You must help me if you can”

– JB “Doctor My Eyes”

[photo of my flatbed truck stage, naung mai thai kitchen, hilo, courtesy of rebecca lucy marie]