Posts Tagged ‘alternative’

The Mystery

The Mystery (mk I), June 1986; standing Dave Ford, Paul Stenvig, Gene Treppeda, Mark Devere; sitting Craig Devere; photo by Ron Heimbecher

Since the Memorial Day weekend I’ve had some songs playing in my head. Not too unusual but these songs are all from the same album, one that hasn’t been heard by too many people. I have two copies of the CD, both of which are numbered (3 & 4) and signed by the producer. I think the reason this album is in my head is that it was recorded, all nine songs, and mixed over a single Memorial Day weekend twenty-five years ago.

My lifetime friend Paul Stenvig owns a company called Beyond Sound, which in turn owns the Capture Communications Group record label. Just before Memorial Day weekend in 1986, he had the opportunity to give a new model Tascam one-inch multi-track recorder an evaluation run.

“Take it and ‘play with it’ over the weekend,” they said. They didn’t understand how seriously Paul ‘played’ with things. A few phone calls later, a marathon session was set, and I was invited to co-engineer. The musicians, a group of friends Paul had been working with, weren’t really a band but had been playing together for a while and had a few songs laid out. The songs had been composed by brothers Craig and Mark Devere and friend Dave Ford, and I hadn’t heard any of them prior to the start of the session.

With the exception of Paul, everyone had regular day jobs, I was working in the local cop shop, so the session started at 5:30 on Friday night. By about ten, we had laid down reference tracks for ten songs and set up a schedule for each of the musicians to work separately on overdubs. Paul and I crashed at the studio for a couple of hours at a time while we swapped engineering tasks. We scheduled mixdown for Monday. Seventy-five hours after we started, we had master tapes for an album called How Many Pieces and a new band named The Mystery.

Craig Devere, vocals; Mark Devere, keyboards and vocals; Dave Ford, guitars; Paul Stenvig, bass; and Gene Treppeda, drums. More songs, and a number of music videos later, I joined The Mystery (mk.II) on vocals, keyboards, and guitars.

How Many Pieces back cover

Here’s the track list. Perhaps I’ll have more in the future about some of these songs.
1. R.E.R.E.S.T.B.
2. Glass Wall
3. Carpenters & Builders
4. Solid Ground
5. Angels Pin
6. Make a Wish
7. Man No Eat
8. Rock Slide
9. So I


We didn’t do video for any of these tracks, but over the period of several months following this amazing weekend, we did a number of music videos featuring the same musicians, many of which were incorporated into the television comedy series Detective Rock Hound, from Beyond Sound.

image from "The Down Button"

A scene from The Down Button, a Rick Lynxwood film starring Ron Lynch Chalice

In our typical way, we inside the mind of the HoarseMan have decided that we won’t bother to get specific in the name of this blog. Instead, we created a set of post categories that map directly to most of the options we were thinking about as titles for this blog. Here are the new post categories, and what they mean.

  • the Apoapsis: stuff gets written here when the HoarseMan is feeling way off center
  • the Apocarpous: the tendons in the HoarseMan’s wrists are getting tender from typing so freakin’ much – no not really, which would be a good explanation if the “carpous” part referred to “carpal” but it doesn’t. The real reason the HoarseMan chose this is so he could sneak by the censors with sexy stories about carpels being separated by a pistil or two.
  • the Apocope: Leaving stuff out at the end of…
  • the Apocrine: the post probably stinks
  • the Apomorphine: the HoarseMan is having an “off” day, or he’s trying to make his dog puke
  • the Aporia: there’s some intentional confusion or mis-definition in there
  • the Apostasy: the HoarseMan is going off in a different direction, away from his principles (if he had any)
  • the Apostrophe: O Goodness, the HoarseMan is talking to someone who isn’t there, or maybe something has been left out…
  • the Apothecary: did the HoarseMan miss his meds today?
  • the Apotheosis: an expansion of the HoarseMan’s consciousness

We hope this list makes more sense to you than it does to us. Don’t forget about our category friends…

  • 6th Period Civics – where the HoarseMan waxes political, which is really nothing at all like a Brazilian Wax.
  • WTF? – where HoarseMan responds to the aeonian questions “What is this all about, dear?” and “What does this mean, dear?” or perhaps “What the hell is going on here, dear?”

We Inside

Q: What the heck does Apo-something mean, Hoarse Man?

A scene from The Down Button a Rick Lynxwood film starring Ron Lynch Chalice

HM: Apo-something means I just don’t know what yet! The easy way out would be Apocalypse…but it’s like way overdone. How many freakin’ movies can they make about it? So I started looking at alternatives. The internet is handy, but sometimes nothing beats a big fat hardcover Webster’s Dictionary. Take a look at the list below, and let me know what YOU think.

  • Apoapsis – Man, I’ve gotta say that certainly fits, same number of syllables, too. Sometimes I really feel like I’m a long way from my gravitational center. Out of the loop, almost.
  • Apocarpous – Sheesh! I don’t have any carpels, let alone separate ones. WTF is a carpel anyway? Sounds a little bit like the PITA tunnel I have in my wrist.
  • Apochromatic – First of all too many syllables. Not even going to waste time with that distorted image. (even a self-image)
  • Apocope – Wha…? Th… F…
  • Apocrine – we don’t do secretions here.
  • Apocrypha – Nope! I know who’s writing this crap. No doubtful authorship here. Hmmm… about that authenticity, though…
  • Skipping, skipping, skipping…a bunch of really boring ones.
  • Apologist – Like that ever happens, I should kick apology off the list, too.
  • Apomorphine – What d’ya think? Sounds a little hazy to me.
  • Aporia – This one has got to be getting close. The definition has a lot of big words in it, including literary
  • Apostasy – No, I’ve got no belief that this one is right.
  • Apostrophe – By Jove, I think this is it! I leave stuff out…and the stuff in here (the blog, not my head…ok, maybe in my head) is mine…mine…mine!
  • Apothecary – ask me tomorrow when I’ve taken my meds…
  • and last, but far from least…Apotheosis – thanks, you really shouldn’t, but hey if that’s what you think who am I to disagree?