Song created for the GB demo: “Crystal Tears – Epicentre Demo 26jun09”

If you caught my demo at the one-night only GarageBand demo at Epicentre@Orchard, you would have heard this:

“CRYSTAL TEARS – Epicentre Demo 26jun09”

Original composition. Guitars by Adrian Loo. Mixing & other instruments by Ivan Chew. Released under Creative Commons ATTRIBUTION 3.0 Singapore license. Feel free to reuse or remix this song (CC license applies), on the condition that you credit the music as follows:
Adrian Loo & Ivan Chew
Creative Commons License
Email us at if you need further clarifications. The track can be downloaded at

The track was created in under 15-mins. For the demo, I imported the rhythm track from Adrian’s Crystal Tears and the Dream Nebulae (still WIP as of this post). Showed a simple split/ copy tracks; added fade in-out. Added drum loops. Using GB’s software instruments; duplicating a MIDI track and adapting it for another software instrument effect. Exported the track.
Crystal Tears - Epicentre Demo 26jun09

I felt the demo went well, but then the audience would be a better judge. If you’re one of those who stayed for the demo, feel free to leave a comment. I had fun with the demo.

A big THANK YOU to the folks at Epicentre@Orchard (esp. the dude who fixed the screen resolution settings!); City Music (Mike, YL, HL); Kestrel and Lisa (you two rock!); SOFT (pleasure meeting you, James).

In case you were wondering, I wasn’t paid to do the demo.

This was reward enough:
One night only! “Best of GarageBand ‘09″ demo, 26 Jun 09

~ Ivan

Our album will be featured at Epicentre@Orchard, Wheelock Place

Just received confirmation today that "Starfish Stories :: The Band" will have our 2nd album featured at Epicentre@Orchard, Apple store! WOOT!

"One World One Moment" A4 Shelf-talker

Thanks to Kestrel and Lisa for helping make this happen!

It’s part of this.

I’ll be doing a 30min demo/ sharing session, on how we use GarageBand (exclusively) to record, mix, and sound-engineer our songs. If you can make it for 8pm, do drop by. Better yet, come by at 6.30pm, ‘cos the real pros will be sharing their stuff.

~ Ivan

Preliminary song list for our upcoming 3rd album

Here are the selected songs for our 3rd album.

  1. Crystal Tears and the Dream Nebulae (WIP)
  2. New Beginning
  3. I Wonder
  4. Saying Goodnight
  5. Stroke of Midnight (sound levels need to be adjusted; too soft!)
  6. To Be Free
  7. Running (WIP)
  8. Finding Love
  9. Vox Humana

Album cover preview: "Crystal Tears and the Dream Nebulae"

Most have been posted here. Right now, I’m working on the title track. Adrian has emailed me the individual tracks as MP3. I’ve decided not to rush to complete the song, as the whole point is really about the process.

~ Ivan

OWOM reviewed!


Thanks, once again, to musictomyears for such a flattering review of our 2nd album.
Download this album for free: 2009 One World One Moment - Jamendo

Here’s the review:

A phenomenal, atmospheric, album to really check out and truly enjoy, I was in sheer heavenly delight, listening, to all these awesome tracks. Very professional sounding, and excellent sound quality at that. I love the vocals, the ambient, enchanting, heartfelt vocals and the musical styles that varied from pop, rock to new age and even folk sounding tracks at times as well. Love the acoustic and electronic guitar especially, Fantastic sound…

An unsolicited review! 2009 One World One Moment - Jamendo

When I read the review, I had to check that it was really for our music! LOL

I was already blown over by the first review, here… and this one just made me all teary.

Thanks so much for your kind works, musictomyears!

You’ve made our day.

~ Ivan

Just joined SOFT

Just signed up for SOFT – – probably THE music forum in Singapore.
SOFT = Music In Singapore

Here’s my first post, a self-intro:

Intro: Rambling Librarian (“0.5” of Starfish Stories :: The Band)

Hey everyone, I’ve heard about but only signed up today. Someone told me most people here are in the mid-20s. I’m not sure if at 37 I’m the oldest guy here.

OK, self-intro (I didn’t read any regulations against long intros… so here goes!):

1) I’m into rock guitar instrumentals (e.g. Joe Satriani, Eric Johnson, Steve Vai) and New Age sounding stuff (e.g. Enya, Andre Vollenweider)

2) Started on the guitar at 18 years old. More to impress the girls but soon got REALLY interested in guitars. Discovered more about electric guitars and gadgets. However, am never formally trained in music.

3) Stopped playing after NS. My guitar collected dust for almost 10+ years. Only resumed playing in 2006. When I discovered GarageBand. First ever GB track here:

4) In 2007, I re-discovered a long-lost Sec Sch mate. He also just discovered GarageBand. Sent me a track via email. I added a lead guitar to it. Sent it back. To cut a long story short, 4 months later we self-produced our music album. We didn’t meet to jam nor record at a studio. Everything was done entirely using GarageBand. Then we released it online only. You might want to check it out here:

5) We decided our music wasn’t too bad (my wife didn’t cover her ears). Plus we didn’t have to spend any money, thanks to the Internet. So we continued as a team and gave ourselves a band name. And we released our 2nd album early this year.…ld-one-moment/

6) Currently working on our 3rd music album. Probably going to release it this year. All our music is released under the Creative Commons license: Meaning, anyone is free to use, distribute, share, remix… the ONLY requirement is to credit the band in the way we state (e.g. name and URL). No payment required — although if they decide to pay our of the goodness of their heart… ahem.

7) In my day job I work as a librarian ( What I do for fun, I post it up at

And now you probably know why I call myself “Rambling”.

OK, look forward to meeting more like-minded people at

Ivan Chew


Preview: Cover for our upcoming 3rd album

I’m pleased to announce that Starfish Stories :: The Band is just one final song away from our 3rd album.

Last night I created this cover using Photoshop, from Creative Commons or Public Domain licensed materials.
Album cover preview: "Crystal Tears and the Dream Nebulae"

Credits for the images:

As to why it’s titled “Crystal Tears and the Dream Nebulae”, more will be revealed later.

~ Ivan

Guitar Prodigy Tallan Latz

When I was eight, I didn’t even know electric guitars existed. Let alone play one.

And play it well.

Heck, I’m past my mid-30s and I can’t play like him! LOL

Apparently there’s some controversy (see also, this vid) with his playing at nightclubs (as a eight-year old).

The YouTube video was dated Dec 2007. Tallen is still playing gigs, as I saw from his MySpace page.

I had to smile at the part where Tallen said he saw Joe Satriani perform on TV, and wanted to be a electric guitarist!

One thing that stood out for me was Tallen’s conviction at playing the electric guitar for the rest of his life. Some part of my adult brain asked “How can he be so sure? He’s only eight!”

But then whether one is eight or eighty, you need a focus.

Tallen’s life goal may change when he hits puberty. Or it may not.

At least he’s got a clear direction right now. Which would be a good foundation for the future.

How many of us can claim to have that?

Good for you, Tallen.

~ Ivan

Remixed! “50 Things to do West of Dingle – Ventry Sand Fun”

Thanks to ventryvic for using the Twilight (2008) track in this video:
50 Things to do West of Dingle – Ventry Sand Fun


I left this comment at the video page:

Hey there! Thanks for remixing our music in your video. I enjoyed this video (not just because you used our song!) Pretty educational. Is building sand sculptures part of the Irish tradition? The picture at the 2min mark made me laugh! Thanks for sharing this. Oh, and I appreciate how you took pains to properly credit all the CC content owners. Thanks! ~ on behalf of Starfish Stories :: The Band.

~ Ivan

Remixed: “Can’t Deny” by Magic_Moon

Thanks to Magic_Moon for remixing my ccmixter Finding Love backing track.

Check this out: CAN’T DENY (BACKING MIX)

Remixed by Magic_Moon; licensed under Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial (3.0).


I like the electronica feel to his remix (at least it sounds like “electronica” to me). A nice contrast to my original rock instrumental.

Makes me feel like adding a remix… let me think about it.

Thanks for this, Magic_Moon.

BTW, Magic_Moon’s ccMixter profile says he’s a “Breakbeat DJ”. Check out his website at

~ Ivan