“Development of a writer” – A retrospective by Jeff Copperthite (Part 3/4)

By Jeff Copperthite:

In my last installment of this miniseries of articles, I gave some insight into my love of video game music, and some of the things that genre has caused me to do.  For the final part, i’d like to bring it back to original composition work, live music, and help bring it full circle.

In the first part, I mentioned that I took part in many musical endeavors in high school.  Nearly every band or music ensemble that existed, I took part in.  I sang in choir, played trombone in the concert band, double bass in the orchestra, electric bass and trombone in the jazz band, and whatever else needed playing for musical productions, talent shows, and even some Senior Court jam sessions w/ Scott.  I taught myself how to play all the instruments I play with the exception of Trombone.

In 1997 I joined a band that was fronted by a guy named Dave.  I was only part of the band for a few months because my work schedule conflicted with when they wanted to practice and write.  It was a mutual parting and I held no animosity to them, nor they to me.  We did get a couple of live shows in those 3 months, and they were fun to jam with.

I didn’t really play with any bands again until senior year, when Scott asked me to play bass at the talent show (I forgot the name of it, but the idea was for students to display various arts on the stage, be it music, dance, or the like) with another friend of ours named Brian.  The three of us were going to play Dave Matthews Band covers in our act.  We learned about 7 songs (could’ve been more or less) and our performance was actually played towards the end.  I also played bass w/ Brian on drums for one of our other mutual friends’ Lindsay to do her rendition of the song “Fever”.  Funny thing is I still know how to play all these songs on the bass.

Our show was liked by the school that we were asked to play at the school’s other talent event called “EATA” (Evening At The Arts).  Our year was the kickoff for this show and again, it was meant to be a display for all the talents of the students at our school.  Except this time, there were events going on at multiple locations.  I myself loved the idea and the three of us jumped at the opportunity.  Scott & I played the open-mic as a bass/guitar duo, and it was easy to do because for the few weeks coming up to the show, we sat in the senior court playing tunes from the show (we had expanded to other covers as well, such as “With A Little Help From My Friends”).  I think we even collected a few bucks.

That show was awesome.  Somewhere i’ve got a picture of us playing at that show.

Not long afterwards, Scott asked me to contribute some recordings to some original songs he had written for an English Project.  The three songs we recorded would become known as our first EP, which was simply called “English Project”.  How appropriate.  The songs that we recorded were patched together rather quickly because he had recorded the guitar part by himself, so I had to put drums and bass on top of that.  Although for a rookie effort, it worked out nicely.

Around this time I also helped Jim put together some MIDI productions that he used for a project (which class?) on MacBeth, putting some songs to varying points of that play.  It was fun to lend my growing instrument collection (which at that point included the Yamaha PSR 320 I had done MIDI on previously, and the Roland Electric Drum Set I still own and use).

Scott & I had a great reception from his recordings, and we were encouraged to record them more formally, along with four more songs.  That album would become “First Stitch” by Quilt.

That reminds me, we came into that name because we saw it on a license plate while going to Sam Ash to get my bass and amplifier.  I still have the bass, but the amplifier met it’s demise last year (you’ll have to check the blog from March of last year to read all about that).

Scott & I continued to record songs, and our duo still is active.  We have recorded two additional albums and one EP since “First Stitch”.  The albums are “Patchwork” and “Expressions” (the latter of which featured my writing exclusively), and the EP was called “Blanket of Death” (which i’ve mentioned already contains some of my favorites from Scott’s writing).

Well, I’m going to stop this for the evening, as it is late.  I’ve decided there will be a part four about a month from now.  Too much music history left to write about.  Stay tuned for that, and i’ll be back next week for another regularly scheduled laptop session!

This is one in a series of acoustic cover songs, original music, and free mp3 downloads here on the Laptop Sessions Music Video Blog.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *