Seasons was the first new music I released after my retirement from Berklee College of Music, where I had been a student, teacher, founding chair of what is now the Electronic Production and Design major, and lastly Senior Vice President for Innovation, Strategy, and Technology. Some of the work on this album is brand new since retiring in May 2017, others were recorded over the past few years in my spare time, but it wasn’t until I retired that I was able to devote the time to complete the recordings and mixes.
Special thanks to Peter Bell, my co-producer and engineer and long-time friend and partner in musical crime. A big thank you to Wendy Young for the great artwork for this album project. The cover is a section taken from a larger work entitled “Listen 2 ,” painted in 2017. Also special thanks to Bruce Nifong for his beautiful alto tracks on Autumnal Equinox and Summer Days. Bruce and I go way back to our days together in Ictus in the late 1970s to early 1980s, and share so many years of friendship. Lastly, I couldn’t have done this project without my buddy Greg Badolato, with whom I’ve been making music since 1983. His beautiful playing graces WinterStill, Spring Forth, The Start of Something New, and Blues in Navy Green. I’m blessed to have such great friends and collaborators.
I performed all the instrumental parts except for the saxophone parts, using guitar and keyboard MIDI control over hardware and software synthesizers and used software based digital signal processors on my guitar sound.
This album is dedicated to my family; my wife Erica Mash, daughters Reesa Morabito (and husband Mark and daughter Lucy) and Sasha Frinzl (and her husband Joe and son Avery), who inspired many of these tunes!
As the title suggests, this piece celebrates my first “summer vacation” since 1976, a result of my retiring from Berklee College of Music beginning in May 2017. This recording features Bruce Nifong on alto saxophone. Recorded in 2016-2017.
Spring Forth (for Sasha)
This piece was written as the recessional music for my daughter Sasha’s wedding in 2013, and was originally written for soprano and classical guitar – and performed by Greg Badolato on soprano sax and My old pal Harry Chalmiers on guitar. This version was arranged and recorded between 2015-2017. This recording features Greg Badolato on saxophones.
The opening chords of this song are created by taking the audio from my Godin Montreal Premier Tripleplay guitar, processing the magnetic pickups and the piezo pickups through separate signal chains in Native Instruments’ Guitar Rig, and the MIDI controls software synthesizers Onisphere and NI Kontakt. The resulting sound was so big and moody that it inspired the creation of the piece. This song features Greg Badolato on tenor saxophone. The recording was started in 2015 and finished in 2017.
This song was originally written in the 1990s, but never fully produced or released. This version was recorded in 2016-2017 and features Bruce Nifong on alto saxophone.
Funny You Don’t Look Spanish
Written and recorded in 2016-2017, this piece was inspired by a newly acquired Godin Multiac Grand Concert Ambience guitar, which sounded so beautiful that when I started playing this piece just emerged from the instrument. I play all the instrumental parts on this recording.
The Start of Something New (for Erica)
I originally composed this music for my wedding to Erica Mack in 1982, and it was composed as a duo for flute and classical guitar, and performed at our wedding by Bob Zung of Ictus and my good friend Harry Chalmiers on Classical Guitar. I then did a multi-horn arrangement of this piece for the first Mashine Music concert in 1983. Both my daughters used the piece for their wedding processionals, and I re-arranged it for Greg Badolato on Soprano and Harry Chalmiers on Classical Guitar. This version features Greg Badolato on tenor, and was recorded 2016-2017.
Mashabito (for Reesa)
This song was originally written in 1984, and recorded to cassette tape for my wife Erica to listen to during her labor with our daughter Reesa, then many years later reworked as background music for a slideshow of pictures of Reesa and Mark for their wedding rehearsal dinner in 2012. Here it is again rearranged as an electronic voyage and finally ready for its first public audience. The title is a mashup of Reesa’s maiden name (Mash) and her married name (Morabito); and was first coined by Reesa and Mark as a possible conjoined last name.
Written in 2017, when my grandson Avery was visiting (at 16 months old). I picked up the guitar to play for him and was watching his face as I improvised the arpeggio that comprises the opening of this tune, and it took me places I wasn’t expecting. So I went into the studio and decided to create this piece as an electronic lullaby for my grandchildren Lucy and Avery, thinking about bedtime for a young child, and searching for sounds that would inspire awe and wonder in the dark. Listen loud through good headphones in the dark…
Blues in Navy Green
As the title suggests, this piece is a bit of a twist on the blues form, and was originally written in 1982 for Berklee’s Ensemble Workshop program. This arrangement was later conceived for the first Mashine Music concert at the Berklee Performance Center in 1983. The recording for this version was begun in 2015, and completed in 2017 and features Greg Badolato on tenor saxophone.
What My Head Sounds Like
This was the first totally new piece I wrote following my retirement from Berklee in May, 2017. The first few weeks were rather strange for me after having been at Berklee for 44 years. and I went into the studio to try to capture how I was feeling in the music I was recording. With Peter Bell’s prodding and inspiration, I took this piece in new directions and had a lot of fun rocking out on guitar.
David plays Godin Guitars exclusively and uses the Fishman TriplePay system to control his synthesizers. David uses the Native Instruments Komplete Kontrol Keyboard, and Komplete Ultimate synthesizers; Spectrasonics Omnisphere, Stylus RMX, and Trillian software instruments; Arturia Collection V; the Korg Legacy Collection; and Moog synthesizers. All the drum tracks on this recording were created using Sonoma Wirework’s DrumCore 4 software.
This music was produced on an Apple MacBook Pro laptop using a Universal Audio Apollo audio interface and DSP plug-ins, and Apple Logic Pro X software. In live performance I use the MacBook Pro with an iConnectivity Audio 4+ interface with Logic and Ableton Live software. I uses a Source Audio Soleman foot controller with Source Audio HotHand USB accelerometer rings. I also use a CME-Pro XKey keyboard. Thanks to all my friends in the industry for all your support!