Newly acquired: custom viola ("Sir Vile") and an Arena Reverb Pedal. Can't wait to make some dark, dreamy, moody, creepy, ethereal sounds...
I have wanted to play the viola as long as I can remember. I love the deep tones and sorrowful, sweet sound. I had played a friend's viola once before, many years ago, and now realize that it must have been a smaller instrument, because the one that I now have is quite a bit larger and more cumbersome. I'm having to stretch my fingers at much larger intervals than what I'm used to on the violin, and applying a little bit more pressure. It feels so heavy, too! But all for the love of that low C-string...so many more string-arragement possibilities! I worked my way through some beginning books, to wrap my head around the alto clef, as each string that I'm used to on the violin now has a different meaning in the notation. But it's great fun experimenting, and I can't wait to try out some songs, and start writing.
Here's a few tracks that I learned feature the viola:
As for buying the reverb pedal; it's something I've been hunting for ever since I started playing live -- previously I'd been using a digital multi-effects pedal, but have had the unfortunate experience of having to fumble with it in front of an audience, when the settings inevitably go off for some unknown reason. Much screeching and feedback usually ensued. I wanted a simple setup that I can be confident will provide a nice sound with limited noodling. I tried a few different ones in the store, but the Arena Reverb Pedal (see demo video below) had some really nice sounds, while still providing enough options that I'll be able to do some customization for the effect I want, and can adjust for each venue or recording setup. Now I guess I finally need to set up a little pedal board, to keep everything in order! (That's probably secretly why I wanted another pedal...to push me over the edge...!)
More experimenting to come.
Sang backup and played violin for a friend of a friend's bad movie night last night -- I think they were playing Piranha 3D? It was a great group of folks, and the group I sang with ("Night Brown" as they introduced themselves) is a very talented duo. One of their original songs is a sweet and introspective tear-jerker, and the other was a more upbeat, empowering piece. Lastly was a cover of ABC's "The Look of Love," sung by the host. It was a treat to be involved, and more may come of our collaborations... Not to mention I got to see my dear friend Allen of Mystery Lawn Music as well!