New SOng: Cherished Spirit

NEW SONG:   Cherished Spirit

Kevin Maher Sketchbook: scribbles and scribes

Song #7 Incognito 

Hi everyone! Kevin Maher here, welcome back to the Sketchbook. It has been a while since I posted a vlog and thought I would get outside and record one since it is a beautiful day. I hope you are well and able to enjoy the Spring weather. Today I am releasing the next song in the Sketchbook series, entitled Incognito. This original saxophone composition is a piece that reminds me of the dark saxophone that you might hear in an film noir Humphry Bogart – This genre of music is sometimes called sax noir… but  today it’s  -  Maher Noir, if you will ; )  Since last month was the anniversary of my wedding the love of my life, I am dedicating this release to her, as she fills my heart and never ceases to amaze me with her kindness, and commitent to making the world a better place. Given the general theme, I also decided to have a little fun with the video just to help set the mood.  This is the seventh release in this series where, over the course of a year, I am publishing a new song from my catalog, every month, for you to hear.  If this is your first time here, I am glad you stopped by and I invite you to listen to the tunes that I have posted. These songs represent sketches of musical compositions that I am working to find a path to develop, record and re-envision through collaboration with musicians, engineers and producers. Releasing the music here is one step in a process that I hope will help me make those connections. 

  Every month there will be something new. I hope you will join me on this journey and help me by sharing and liking if you see fit. You can also go to my website and sign up for the mailing list. If you do this, I will send you a note on the day that the next new song is released.    

Although I am continuing to work on my production skills, the sound quality is likely to vary between stereo systems, so If you can, do listen with headphones, because it may produce an experience closer to what I am aiming for. 

Feel free to leave feedback and if you are a music professional who would like to collaborate with recording, production or any other aspect of the process, please let me know. If you enjoy it, please give me a thumbs up, subscribe and tap the bell.  With that, I will let the song speak for itself. Thanks for listening and I hope you like it. Peace. 

p.s.  

To see the Maher Noir video for the song Incognito, go to: https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLdSNpwBNz2Uei6-t1POIEu8MxfSg7eTxb 

To see the video version of this blog, go to: https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLdSNpwBNz2UcupvV-0DF-ItlnAHsVknkW 

Or navigate to the YouTube playlist using the YouTube Buttons to the left and at the top of the page.

Song #6: Cherished Spirit 

Hi everyone Kevin Maher here, welcome back to the Sketchbook. If this is your first time here, I am glad you stopped by and I invite you to listen to the music that I have posted. Today I am posting a new composition for saxophone, entitled Cherished Spirit. This is the sixth song that I am publishing in this series. This is part of a project, where I am posting a new song from my catalog, every month, for you to hear.  If you are interested in joining me on this journey,  please go to my website and sign up for the mailing list, I will send you a note on the day that the next new song is released. 

The piece I am releasing here (Cherished Spirit), is written for three sax voices, acoustic bass and piano (though I have started a symphonic arrangement of this same tune, which I will post down the line). This piece, like most of my music is abstract in intent and takes a path of its own, but it was recorded under the setting in which I felt the presence of my departed mother in the space of that creative moment. I won’t opine on the nature of that experience, other than to say it clearly shaped the tone and temperament of the piece. So it is, that I am dedicating this composition to my dearly departed mother, in honor of the joy, kindness, laughter and support she gave me and all who know her.   

If you like what I am doing here, please visit and subscribe to the YouTube channel by clicking the subscribe button and don’t forget to click the bell so that you get the notifications. Please share this with everyone you think might appreciate it, as I would like to connect with as many people as possible in the hopes of moving this music to the next stage. And remember, this site is called Sketchbook, because these compositions are first round sketches of songs that I hope to re-orchestrate, re-record and re-envision in collaboration with others. But the first step is to connect with those producers, engineers and musicians who are open to collaboration and I hope you will help me build the fan base to get that exposure. Feel free to leave feedback and if you are a music professional who would like to collaborate with recording, production or any other aspect of the process, please let me know. With that, I will let the song speak for itself. Thanks for listening and I hope you like it. Peace. 

we were, 

once cleaved 

together then 

apart 

you gave 

til could no more and 

in passing, 

were grieved 

beyond dried tears 

held close, 

you left 

strength molded, 

love touched, 

we are, 

but for you 

 

                                     -Kevin

Song #5: The Progressive Deviant 

Hi Again and Happy New Year! Kevin Maher here, welcome to the Sketchbook. I truly hope that you are faring well, staying safe and managing the challenges of the current pandemic. If you looking for a little distraction, I’ve got it for you. Today I am posting a new composition for saxophone, entitled The progressive Deviant. This is the fifth song in this series where, over the course of a year, I am publishing a new song from my catalog, every month, for you to hear.  If this is your first time here, I am glad you stopped by and I invite you to listen to the tunes that I have posted here. Every month there will be something new. I hope you will join me on this journey,  by going to my website and signing up for the mailing list. If you do this, I  will send you a note on the day that the next  new song is released.     

This piece I am releasing here, is written in a progressive rock style and features tenor saxophone. If you can, do listen with headphones, because it will be easier to hear the different voices within the sound stage. If you want to know more about why I am recommending this, see the blog for For When the Righteous Rule Again,  on my website, which discusses this topic in more detail. 

If you like what I am doing here, subscribe to this channel by clicking the subscribe button and don’t forget to click the bell so that you get the notification. My goal for this project is to connect with as many people as possible in the hopes of moving this music to the next stage, So, please share this with everyone you think might appreciate it. The site is called Sketchbook, because these compositions are first round sketches of songs that I hope to re-orchestrate, re-record and re-envision in collaboration with others. Feel free to leave feedback and if you are a music professional who would like to collaborate with recording, production or any other aspect of the process, please let me know. With that, I will let the song speak for itself. Thanks for listening and I hope you like it. Peace. 

p.s.  

To see the visualization video for the music The Progressive Deviant, navigate to the Youtube links on this page or go to: https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLdSNpwBNz2UfqtkHHcHwNe7H88lZM0GAH

Song #4: Daddy Did 

Hi everyone Kevin Maher here, welcome back to the Sketchbook. If this is your first time here, I am glad you stopped by and I invite you to listen to the music that I have posted. Today I am posting a new composition for saxophone, entitled Daddy Did. This is the fourth song that I am publishing in this series. This is part of a project, where I am posting a new song from my catalog, every month, for you to hear.  I invite you to join me on this journey by going to my website and sign up for the mailing list, I will send you a note when the next new song is released. 

The piece I am releasing here (Daddy Did), is written with several sax voices interacting in call and response type interplay. If you can, do listen with in-ear monitors/headphones, because it will be easier to hear the different voices within the sound stage. If you want to know more about why I am recommending this, see the blog for “For When the Righteous Rule Again”, below, which discusses this topic in more detail. 

If you like what I am doing here, please visit and subscribe to the YouTube channel by clicking the subscribe button and don’t forget to click the bell so that you get the notifications. Please share this with everyone you think might appreciate it, as I would like to connect with as many people to help bring this music to the next stage. And remember, this site is called Sketchbook, because these compositions are first round sketches of songs that I hope to re-orchestrate, re-record and re-envision in collaboration with others. But the first step is to connect with those producers, engineers and musicians who are open to collaboration and I hope you will help me build the fan base to get that exposure. Feel free to leave feedback and if you are a music professional who would like to collaborate with recording, production or any other aspect of the process, please let me know. With that, I will let the song speak for itself. Thanks for listening and I hope you like it. Peace. 

-Kevin 

p.s.  

To see the visualization video for the music Daddy Did, go to:  https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLdSNpwBNz2Uf_gqNUwfjJ8lHX6JNy3snG

Or navigate to the YouTube playlist using the YouTube Buttons to the left and at the top of the page.

Song #3: For the Love of God 

Hi everyone Kevin Maher here, welcome back to the Sketchbook. If this is your first time here, I am glad you stopped by and I invite you to listen to the music that I have posted here. Today I am posting a new composition for saxophone, entitled For the Love of God. This is the third song that I am publishing for you to hear, from this series, where I am posting a new song from my catalog, every month.  If you are interested in joining me on this journey,  please go to my website and sign up for the mailing list, I will send you a note on the day that the next new song is released. 

This piece I am releasing here, is written with several sax voices interacting in call and response type interplay. If you can, do listen with in-ear monitors/headphones, because it will be easier to hear the different voices within the sound stage. If you want to know more about why I am recommending this, see the blog for “For When the Righteous Rule Again”, below, which discusses this topic in more detail. 

If you like what I am doing here, visit and subscribe to the YouTube channel by clicking the subscribe button and don’t forget to click the bell so that you get the notifications. Please share this with everyone you think might appreciate it, as I would like to connect with as many people as possible in the hopes of moving this music to the next stage. And remember, this site is called Sketchbook, because these compositions are first round sketches of songs that I hope to re-orchestrate, re-record and re-envision in collaboration with others. But the first step is to connect with those producers, engineers and musicians who want to work on these, and I hope you will help me build the fan base to get that exposure. Feel free to leave feedback and if you are a music professional who would like to collaborate with recording, production or any other aspect of the process, please let me know. With that, I will let the song speak for itself. Just scroll down to the bottom of this page for the  VLOG and music videos. Thanks for listening and I hope you like it. Peace. 

-Kevin

p.s.  

To see the visualization video for the music For the Love of God, go to:  https://youtu.be/TCZu8Vl27So 

To see the video version of this blog, go to: https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLdSNpwBNz2UcqN54xSLnamXdLS8dNaT75 

Or navigate to the YouTube playlist using the YouTube Buttons to the left and at the top of the page.

Song #2: For When the Righteous Rule Again 

Hi everyone and welcome back to the Kevin Maher Sketchbook. First, I’d like to send a special thanks to everyone who took the time to listen to my first song, In Honor and for providing all the positive feedback. If this is your first time here, I will briefly tell you that I have been writing music for saxophone for the past 30 years and am posting a new song each month for you to hear. The site is called Sketchbook, because these original saxophone compositions are sketches of songs that I want to be re-orchestrated, re-recorded and re-envisioned as I collaborate with others. If you go to my website and sign up for the mailing list, I will send you a note on the day that the new song is released. Today I am posting song number two, entitled, For When the Righteous Rule Again

As you will hear, this piece is a lot more upbeat. It has some rocking energy, New Orleans jazz type interplay between the voices, and maybe even a bit of Latin swing. If you can, do listen with in-ear monitors/headphones, because it will be easier to hear the different voices within the sound stage. This is especially important for this piece and my music in general, for several reasons. Although I often incorporate synthesizers to add drums, piano, bass, strings and other horns, I am primarily a saxophonist, and I use the sax to write much of my music, just because I get better flow of my ideas that way. I like to introduce several sax parts to carry opposing melodies or to set up a dialog between several voices. Ultimately, these sax parts may be replaced with other instruments, but at this stage, because these different voices are all saxes, the spectral characteristics can be very similar and it can make it hard to hear which voice is saying what and listening on your computer speakers can make it sound like trying to follow a conversation in a crowded room. I approach this challenge in the production process by trying to apply slightly different EQ, compression and panning to place the sounds in a distinct place in the sound stage and frequency range, so that the sax parts are more distinct. There are plenty of producers who could do a better job at this and I welcome their participation, but for now, headphones will help you to hear what I intended better than computer speakers. By all mean (!) feel free to listen wherever you want, but because I also did the mastering with in-ear monitors/headphones (and I am not a professional mastering engineer), playing my music back in your car, computer speakers or home stereo, may give unexpected results (e.g., one part might sound too loud or harsh). I am truly thrilled you are listening. If I succeed in hooking up with others who can help me move this project along, I will post the new versions as they evolve.. 

If you like what I am doing here, just click the button below to sign the mailing list and I will let you know when the next song is posted. You can hear today’s release by clicking the player above, or by clicking the YouTube link (to the left of this post). With that, I will let the song speak for itself. Thanks for listening and I hope you like it.  Peace. 

-Kevin 

p.s.  

Please do share this with everyone you think might be interested or might appreciate it, as the goal here is to hook up with as many people as possible in hope of finding collaborators.

To see the visualization video for the music For When the Righteous Rule Again, just scroll down this page or go to:  https://youtu.be/gonfnYEMzGs

Subscribe to my YouTube Channel and press the Bell to receive notifications: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC2O6Joxcyc8hK-Iw74Iw0VA?sub_confirmation=1

To see the video version of this blog, just scroll down this page or go to: https://youtu.be/BBCspbqidrE 

Or navigate to the YouTube playlist using the YouTube Buttons to the left and at the top of the page.

 

Song #1: In Honor - saxophone music video - September-11 musical tribute 

Hi everyone and welcome back to the Sketchbook. I am so excited to announce that today I am publishing here, the first of twelve monthly-releases for you to hear. This first song, is called In Honor. I mentioned previously that my music is usually abstract, but on occasion, my music is written with a specific thought in mind and this song is one such example. I wrote In Honor this past Memorial Day weekend.  I started off as usual, thinking about our military who gave their lives to help make this country great, but then I couldn’t also help but think about COVID-19 and how each day, countless people are devoting their lives (and some making the ultimate sacrifice) for the common good of all. Here, we have first responders, doctors, nurses, laboratorians, public health workers, and everyone else who takes on the risk of infecting themselves and their family, and they go to work in the face of this pandemic, to keep our society moving. Now, I originally wasn’t going to release In Honor first, or even second for that matter, but I couldn’t think of a better time to release this than as a September-11 musical tribute  because the World Trade center attack was another example where many first responders and good Samaritans sacrificed their lives and health for others. 

I will just note that this composition was recorded in my home studio and optimized for playback with ear buds, so headphones or earbuds will likely give the best listening experience.  If you liked this piece, please sign up for the email list and I will let you know next month when the next song is published. If you didn’t care for this song this song or if you find this stuff all too depressing… sign up anyway! I promise, each month there will be something different and next month’s song will be way more upbeat !!! 

So, in these somber times and on this somber holiday, I just want to express my gratitude and to honor the selfless acts that people make for others, irrespective of race, creed, color or political party. It is this spirit that has and always will make America great. With utmost respect and appreciation, I share this very small token with thoughts of a brighter tomorrow for all. I hope you like it. Peace. 

-Kevin

p.s. 

To see the video for the music In Honor and video version of this blog, just scroll down this page or go to: 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LBxy5NXMGJw&list=PLdSNpwBNz2UfbAkUNhh8vtzIblrmO453-   

Or navigate to the YouTube playlist using the YouTube Buttons to the left and at the top of the page.

 

Welcome to the Kevin Maher Sketchbook – the Home for Original Saxophone Music and Saxophone Music Video 

(Note: If you would rather watch the video version of this blog, click the Youtube icon above)

To all my friends, old and new, I am so excited that you have made it here. This webpage is just part of a new project that I am launching to help share my music with you and everyone else who might appreciate it. For those of you who know me, you know I have been playing music most of my life, and over the past thirty years or so, I have been composing and recording music. But, no one, besides me, has ever heard any of this stuff.  So here we are, after years of creating, I find myself with all this work and I have decided to share some of what I have written and we will see where it takes us. 

About Me: I am a sax player. I was trained early in classical music, and when I was eight years old, I asked my mother to buy me the record Wendy Carlos’ Well-Tempered Synthesizer, because my third-grade music teacher, Ms Russo, played a copy of Switched on Bach, and it blew my mind. Wendy Carlos was a pioneer in electronic music (wrote the soundtrack for Stanley Kubrick’s Clockwork Orange) and this album really expanded my concept of music and instilled within me, the quest to own my own synthesizer one day (we've come a long way). As I grew older, I had heavy influences from many Blues based rock groups like Humble Pie, prog rock groups like Genesis, ELP, Pink Floyd, etc., Fusion based groups (e.g., Return to Forever), the eclectic Frank Zappa, George Clinton, New Orleans Jazz and more traditional and contemporary blues like Muddy Waters, Buddy Guy and Stevie Ray Vaughan. When composing[, I don’t try to emulate any one of these genres and I am not sure that what I do could be technically affixed to any one of those musical forms, but I am sure that all of what I have listened to, has shaped what I do. Its some blues, some rock, some classical and I guess mostly a fusion of these. Each piece is a sonic slice of where I was emotionally, at the moment I wrote it and captured in that recording. 

About the Music: The work, as a collection, is a reflection of my life, its ups and downs, ins and outs. As such, it fuses the music I have listened to and loved: Blues, N.O. jazz, funk, rock, classical and R&B. In some cases the work is about something in particular, in other cases, it is just a feeling that came to life. Some of these are quiet and somber, others more rocking, some busy with multiple voices playing off each other. Rough and grungy, this music carries the thoughts and feelings that I hope to share with you, that you might find in them, interest and enjoyment.

About the Plan: In the coming months and over the next year, I am planning on selecting some of my compositions and posting themon the Kevin Maher Sketchbook website (with links to Youtube, Facebook, etc.). I call it Kevin Maher Sketchbook, because the pieces I am presenting there are sketched-out ideas of what I think the song might be. Each recording was captured with the equipment and technique that I possessed at the time. I see in many of them, alternate arrangements and would love to hear what other people  can do with them, or even see them scored for film. Since recording them, I have been able to do some additional production work on them, but they are all original recordings. I hope that with your help, I can move these pieces to the next phase of this project, where I can hook up with some collaborators and finish these properly. The Sketchbook is one step down that path. 

About Your Role: I hope you’ll enjoy what I am doing and can join me on this path. If you do, I ask you to please help me by sharing it with anyone you think might be interested. Join the email list below, and I will send you updates as I post each new piece (around monthly) so you can come check them out. If you know someone who might enjoy this, please share it where you can, to help me build some presence and increase the likelihood I will cross paths with the right people and opportunities. If you see other ways to help me move the music along, let me know. The purpose here, is to put my music out there, to engage with people who like this kind of music, and to connect with producers, engineers  and musicians who may be interested in helping to bring these works to where they can be. 

Just sign up now and I’ll see you next time. 

-Peace 

-Kevin 

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