On the Rocks album is a reality

After nearly 7 years in the making, my third album is finally a physical reality.  It contains 20 tracks that are my usual range of diversity: a cappella to electronic, with quite a few ballads this time.  This is the first album to use acoustic instruments.  On two tracks I play the recorder, in one case multi-tracked to about 6 tracks (My Anchor).  In another I have a saxaphone solo by Trent Howard in the song Scared. Samples of some of his takes are used in two other songs: Too Far and Tiny Blade.  Katherine Sivieng features as a vocalist in one of the bonus tracks (Song for Ben).  The wonderful album cover was designed by Brenden James.  Some of his photography can be seen on YouTubeDarren McKinty (aka Xaeja, aka Dags) gave lots of help sprucing up the audio quality.  If you want to hire a sound engineer “up Upwey way”, then I heartily recommend him.  Mastered by Crystal Mastering.

I don’t have digital distribution yet, but if you want to hear some of the album drafts, you can find them on SoundCloud.  Some have changed dramatically for the album – particularly Drowning.  The Too Far album draft is used in my video.

The first CD sale was on Sunday.  So it begins…

Catch gig tonight

I’m performing two of my catches tonight at the opening of the Queermance Festival in Hares and Hyenas in Fitzroy, with the assistance of members of my choir and the organiser of the festival.  Should be fun!
Tonight’s event is free.  We’ll also be performing on the Saturday and Sunday of the festival.

Details at: http://www.queermance.com.au/

Things That Fall Over

I’m singing in a production that will be performed this Saturday at the Footscray Community Arts Centre.  Through it I have met some amazing people, such as Peta Murray, the writer and architect of the project, Robin Laurie our choreographer, and the incredible Margret RoadKnight, who is the star of Swansong.  If you have a chance come to Swansong to get a glimpse of this work and to get a rare chance to see and hear Margret RoadKnight perform in Melbourne.

Details here: http://footscrayarts.com/calendar/things-that-fall-over-an-anti-musical-of-a-novel-inside-a-reading-of-a-play-with-footnotes-and-oratorio-as-coda/

For the blog of the project see http://wordpress.com/read/blog/id/40540186/


Language and comic book stuff is moving

Language and comic book stuff is moving

To make my blogs more focussed I’ve created a separate one for my language learning comic.  The Sandra Bogerd one will be largely restricted to my music projects.  It’s a bit of a blurred line though, as my comic book project involves writing and recording songs as well as creating the comic book.  The main reason for the division is so I don’t clutter up this blog with quantitative linguistics and the like.

A New Beginning

Not actually a New Year’s Resolution, but with the determination that comes with a new year, I’ve decided to try to post to my blog on a regular basis.  I still need to sort out my on-line plan, but one thing I learnt first-hand last year was that putting things off until they’re perfect often means that you are too late – sometimes with sad consequences.

It’s late in Melbourne, but at least I’ve made a start.

New thoughts on my language comic books

The premise of my language comic books is that:

  • Images improve retention
  • Repetition improves retention
  • There is a lot of common vocabulary that can be exploited between source and target language
  • Achieve maximum bang per buck, by introducing words in approximate word frequency order, most frequent first
  • Engaging stories keep people reading at a higher level of language difficulty

One thing that I don’t directly exploit is how children learn and how people learn by ear and during immersion.  Research shows that children start by using a one-word sentence grammar, then move to 2-word sentences and then to more complex structures.  My experience of learning languages by ear by watching television shows also reflects that.  We pick up the common short phrases first, and it takes a while to understand the longer sentences.  Similarly, the most important predictor of readability is sentence length.  In my analysis of the text of French classics I found that the most common grammatical structure found was the single-word sentence consisting of an interjection, such as “Ah!”.  This was followed by other one to two word sentence structures.  Long sentences tend to have virtually unique structures.

I’m not sure yet how I will exploit this in my stories.  In some ways I already do, since it is easy to write dialogue such as “Silence!”, “Ah!”  and “Jacques!”.  La saga continue…