Two new songs (mashups with friends)

Ivan Chew - ProfileDid these songs over the last two weeks. Both were mashups, courtesy of two blokes from Songcraft.

This one’s with Chris, titled “We Are”. I added in the lead guitar and bass parts to his original recording. Details at MyRightBrain.

And this one’s with Firdaus. It’s a guitar instrumental version of his original composition, titled “Summer Days, Winter Nights”: Details at MyRightBrain (including pictures of my customised GarageBand guitar effects).

Both songs were great excuses for me to practice on my new bass guitar!

~ Ivan

Rock guitar instrumental: “Here And Now (2008)”

Ivan Chew - ProfileWorked on this for a few weeks. My attempt at an angsty rock guitar instrumental. After about 14 versions, I came up with this:

HERE AND NOW – 2008Download/ listen at ARCHIVE.ORG

Chords: Em/ D/ A + C/ G
Tempo: 90 bps

I’m not 100% satisfied with it. The sound engineering can be improved. The playback volume is not as loud as I want it to be, and I think the overall bass frequency can be adjusted better. But since I’ve reached the limits of what I know, this will have to do.

Started with a distortion guitar track (rhythm part), which expanded to include more guitars (lead and rhythms), then synth, bass, drums etc.

Then I let Adrian listen to this version (#10):Overall got his thumbs-up, although he didn’t like the lead (I didn’t like it either, ‘cos I half-heartedly recorded the lead to hear how the overall arrangement sounded).

So I took his comments and continued working on the piece, especially the lead. In the end, I decided to retain the initial lead melody, but I revised the middle part completely. You’ll probably hear a marked difference between version #10 and the final one.

This piece has 19 layers (my Macbook Pro’s 2GB memory wasn’t enough to cope, so I had to lock some tracks).
Here And Now (2008) - Part 1
Here And Now (2008) - Part 2

~ Ivan

Singaporean musician: Faith Yang

Learned about this Singaporean artist, Faith Yang (via Jerron, who posted to the folks at Songcraft). - Faith Yang, Fu Wei - Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, States, Germany, China - Cristiana / Electrónica / Pop  -

Jerron added that Faith Yang was formerly from “2Gals” (“两个女生”) that did quite well in Taiwan & Singapore in the late 1990s. I found this article from Channelnewsasia.

Faith Yang (not to be confused with another “Faith Yang” who’s implicated in a drug scandal) was interviewed on recently (if you’re confused why the DJ started by talking about jewelery, Cavemen and Christmas trees, you’re not alone. But listen on).

In the audio interview, Faith explains more about Rebirth (, a collaboration/ production house.

From this post:

And I am happy to have founded this audio production house. Other than that, we hunger for our own creation freedom and space as well. We invite other talents to work with us on the visuals side of things. We call ourselves, the ‘Rebirth’.

This page says “We love to work with others”.
Rebirth » Collaborate

Um… Adrian, you think Faith will consider singing for one of our songs? LOL

Faith just launched her first single titled “Simple Living” (you can hear samples here).

She’s got a nice voice. 🙂

And marketable looks.

Recipes for success.

I like the track that is featured in this post (starts off with a piano piece, and then the distortion guitars coming in). It doesn’t seem to be featured in the samples though.

The CD retails at SGD$11.90 and can be purchased online

Will I buy the album?

Let’s put it this way… it’s like some of our reviewers saying they like our SeaStars album on the whole, but they probably won’t buy it ‘cos New Age isn’t really their thing. Ah, but to compare SeaStars and Faith Yang would be to compare two proven amateurs with one proven singer/ composer!

In my rambling way, I’m not saying it’s a flat no. I may not be ordering the CD right this instant but l’ve subscribe to her blog. If her blog posts make a connection with me, and if her songs continue to be as good, then I’m sure it’s a matter of time that I make that purchase.

Anyway, good luck with the CD sales, Faith Yang. I’m happy to see a Singaporean artiste creating her own opportunities, and making her own brand of music.

~ Ivan

Guitar Instrumental – “Just Wanna Be With You”

This is an instrumental version of this song (published in my personal Art blog). I’m releasing this as part of the Starfish Stories collection.

Listen/ download MP3 at ARCHIVE.ORG

I’d stripped away the vocals from the earlier song. Then added “live” guitar tracks, drums, bass, incidentals like Piano and Phased Sitar.
Just Wanna Be With You (Guitar Instrumental).band

I feel that this song is quite complete. But maybe Adrian or listeners here might think otherwise (I’m open to suggestions!)

Ivan Chew - Profile
~ Ivan

[5 Sept 08 – UPDATE: This song’s featured in this YouTube video!]

David Greer

My friend, Ollie, pointed me to this musician, David Greer, at Says he’s a singer/songwriter from Montgomery, Alabama.
Transmissions - HOME

One of his songs automatically loaded and started playing when his website loaded. Normally I hated that but this time was an exception. It was his singing, the arrangement, the sound of the instruments, the sound engineering… whatever.

It was excellent stuff.

I downloaded all the songs. Took quite a bit of time but it was worth it.

Being a free-thinker, I’m not into any particular religious-inspired music of any kind. Actually, it’s more accurate to say that I enjoy all sorts of music if the melody and tune gets to me.

David Greer’s music does get to me.

He’s got a new fan.

Subscribed to his mailing list.

Can’t wait for more.

Ivan Chew - Profile
~ Ivan

SeaStars blog has been hacked

Sanitised version of our SMS conversation around 8am this morning:

Adrian: The seastars blog has been hacked into…

Ivan: Really? Wat it look like now? We must change all wordpress passwords then. Hacked using either of our accounts? [As Ivan was replying to Adrian, he’s thinking, “Alamak, this Adrian must have left his password lying around in school”]

Adrian: how do i know this sort of thing? wah piang there’s lots of crap in there lah… some of the music is still there.

Ivan: Can only look at it at home later. Hope the hack is only to seastars and not our other blogs. Must check if still got (my) RSS feed as backup.

Adrian: what day is today lah?

Ivan: [Pauses for a split second. Breaks out in a grin in mid step while walking to a meeting venue and giving others the impression he’s one card short of a full house. Replies:] Somebody is too free. Thks for the laugh though. U realise ur credibilty has taken a dive, don’t u? heh heh

Adrian: hee hee hee… The world is too serious… Glad I made your morning. What credibility?

Ivan: Dude. What would Gandhi say?

Adrian: He’d laugh out loud

Yeah, I really think Gandhi would 🙂
But Adrian, try it again and well… remember the Cry Wolf story!
Ivan Chew - Profile
~ Ivan