Colin Tyler
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Colin Tyler

Chicago, Illinois, United States | SELF

Chicago, Illinois, United States | SELF
Band Alternative Rock


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Demo 2009

1.) Shake the Tree
2.) The Nightwatchman

Live Video EP (APR 2011)

1.) Sad Grin
2.) What Ails Me
3.) I Don't Know a Thing
4.) Your Baby Boy

Live Video EP (JAN 2012)

1.) Got it Bad
2.) The West
3.) Momma, Take Rest
4.) Behind the Scenes & Bonus Material



Pietro Mascagni, an Italian operatic composer, once said,
“Modern music is as dangerous as cocaine.”

We can’t be sure why Mascagni thought it “dangerous,” but in today’s music culture, with pitch-perfect auto-tuned vocals, formulated song structures, entire albums created by computers, and artists altogether duplicating their predecessors; modern music is anything but “dangerous.” In fact, it sounds downright “safe.” But what we all seem to be forgetting is that music is still an art form. And in all mediums of art, good art is dangerous! It takes risks! It brings to life something that never before existed and abolishes the normal and mundane!

It is my firm belief that here and now our culture is standing at the threshold of a revival; and not just musical, but of all things synthetic. We are begging for something honest and pure in all aspects of our existence; from the foods we eat, to politics and the information we receive, right down to music and art. I am reminded of the excess, glam and utter insincerity of the 80s just before Kurt Cobain took the helm of the grunge revolution. We are beginning to see that, although our technologies increase efficiency and productivity, we are sacrificing something more inconspicuous.
And I am a liar…

As digital recordings shift to higher and higher levels of “perfection,” we notice we are slowly phasing out the goals music itself set out to accomplish. Music is not supposed to be perfect, it is supposed to be honest. And I am a liar. I have lied in all my recordings to date. I have layered dozens of tracks, each recorded separately, to give the illusion of a full on performance. I have recorded take after arduous take, to give the illusion of musical mastery. I have used hundreds of studio tricks to give the illusion that I am more than I really am. And it’s all bullshit.

Upon listening back to all my studio-perfected music, I sensed something was missing; something was incomplete. It was sonically pleasing, but it simply had no soul. I realized I had been trying to imitate something that was once raw and emotional. Now, all honesty and emotion had been suffocated and only a shadow of a ghost remained. I then decided to never make a studio recording again. Live recordings are my future.

Recording is a fairly new technology and concept, given the scope of music history. How did people listen to music before the phonograph? Imagine it, for a moment. They had to physically be in the presence of the artist to hear the music. Great music wasn’t readily available to them. They could not access it with a stroke of the index finger. It was something special; something sacred and they knew it. Can you imagine if you were one of the lucky few able to see Beethoven himself perform Für Elise? What an experience it must have been!

In some cultures, separate words for music and dance do not exist. They are one and the same. The movement of a person is as important as the sound. So where did we go wrong? When did compact disks and MP3s become all that is music? When did the performance become secondary? It seems like we are taking photographs of mountains and pawning them off as mountains. Yes, you can look at a picture and gain a pretty accurate idea of what a mountain is with a little imagination, but to actually stand at the base of Mount Everest and look up is quite another impression far beyond the dimensions of a photograph. No wonder everyone is stealing music. They’re starting to smell the bullshit.
Let them steal it!

If someone steals a postcard of Mount Everest from the gift shop, does it in any way affect the mountain? We know no matter how many photos of Mount Everest one has, they will never amount to the experience of standing in its presence. That is what musicians should be selling— the experience. It is energy only the artist can create and a power only they hold. It cannot be duplicated or fabricated and can never be poached. The focus should be on the experience and creating a moment in time where no amount of piracy can surmount it. This is my vision for my music.

Here we return to Mascagni. It is possible that he believed popular music to be so dangerous because he foresaw what it has become. From this day on, let us make a point to prove him wrong and initiate a paradigm shift in the Western perceptions of music. Let us reinstate value in the arts. Let us turn our sails to the winds of change and finally experience music again with childlike wonder.