Music for Newborns started when I saw the image of Joy, two days old, and knew it was the cover of my next album. I heard the sound in my head and lets face it, I love to make niche albums, so I started working on it right away.
Much of this was composed the first couple of days after bringing Joy and Coral home from the hospital; most of it with them sitting right beside me in their baby chairs. They seemed to like it. Hopefully they weren’t just being polite.
I’m a huge baroque and classical fan and I was a music theory/composition minor in college, so it was only a matter of time before I did something like this. The beauty is that Music for Newborns is the soundtrack for our twins’ first six months. The album is relaxing but has lots of counterpoint which I was hoping would inspire imagination and sweet dreams for babies and parents. Counterpoint is a style of using overlapping melodies popularized by JS Bach and something that I’ve employed on my rock albums for quite some time. My goal here was to make it simple with complex undertones, but it’s really all about the french horns, bassoon and oboes, my favorite (and possibly over used) instruments.
The song ‘Owls’ Call’ is especially poignant. Right before Adair decided she was definitely in labor, the owls that come to our Reynoldstown back yard on occasion started being very noisy. We both heard them, even with me cranking up mixes in the studio trying to finish my Life’s A Love Song project. Since they had been seemingly signaling every other milestone pregnancy event, we naturally felt that their energetic bombast was the sign that we needed to pet the dogs and go meet our kids. The song reflects the calm we felt as we left for the unknown.
The other songs play on an array of emotions anchored by piano or guitar. The album finishes with “Waking Up” which I tried to do in a tempo that would alternately either get you stirring a bit to wake up or continue to dream that semi-conscious skewed revelry you were drifting in and out of. Thanks for listening!
I’m in the middle of a very productive year musically, releasing lots of independent albums, but that doesn’t mean I don’t put in 40-60 hours a week with my “real job” developing solar farms. I live in Atlanta where you gotta make some dough to feed the oven, so a “real” job is quite a necessity. Although I’m working hard with my record company and PR to turn that table, this old song of mine seems even more ironic to me today (now that I have a “real” job and am not a full time musician anymore). Thanks for listening and supporting independent music!
This is the best capture I’ve ever filmed. Joy and Coral in the bath and cracking each other up for the first time. This already went semi-viral on Facebook, so I figured I’d put it on youtube and see what happens.
Jordan did it again thanks to a bumpy missed put by DJ. That kid is a machine. Although this song isn’t about him, it’s a fitting post today. As far as the complainers about Chambers Bay are concerned, I say suck it up. I thought it was great. Adam Scott shot a 64 and Rory shot 66 yesterday, that means the scores were there to be had. Blame it on your game, not the course.
Good game last night. The Hawks pulled it out to win the Stanley Cup again. I like hockey but really only watch it a few times a year. Growing up in the South, hockey typically isn’t an option as a sport to play. But I can write a song about it and here it is!
I’ve made a lot of albums in my life but none of them compare in popularity to my two golf themed albums. I moved to Asheville in 2004 and quickly became addicted to golf the day I decided to max out my credit card to join the old Holiday Inn Sunspree golf course. My first round on the course I shot 94, in five months of playing there every day I shot a 64 there (it was a short par 68). That shows how much I was practicing and playing (some would say to the neglect of my music, business and relationships).
Anyway, one day we were playing that very course when my friend asked me “why don’t you make a golf album?”. I wrote down eight song titles during the round, wrote three songs in line at the DMV the next day and had a full album recorded and on it’s way to manufacturing by the end of the week.
“Triple Bogey with 17 Holes to Play” forever entered me into the golf world and I haven’t looked back since. From promoting the album, I joined a golf radio show (speakingofgolf.com) for two years, performed at the Carolina Golf Hall of Fame and at many country clubs around the US, met many of my golf idols and played a ridiculous amount of free golf. Pretty good for an album I wrote and recorded in five days!
I finally got around to making my follow-up to Triple Bogey a year ago. I had a lot of golf songs that I hadn’t released and ideas for new ones so I had to get them out into the fairways of life. This album is more acoustic than the rocking full band ‘Triple Bogey’ but the lyrics are much more dense.
There are some good story songs and of course a few kooky novelty songs as well.
And now I have new golf songs that need to be released like a golf ball in a fried egg lie, but alas, I’m working on a few other albums at the moment so sadly, it may be a while before they fade hook into the world we love. Stay tuned and hit ’em straight!
Welcome to Chris Cates.com. I'm an old school independent artist with lots of albums, songs, solar panels etc. This site tries to encapsulate what it is I've been doing since I played my first professional gig at 13. I post a song of the day occasionally from my somewhat excessive original song catalogue and I'm constantly recording new material when I'm not building solar farms, trying to play golf or tennis or taking care of my new twin girls.