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About BloomingLate

  • Rank
    Eggplant Wizard (+50)

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
  • Interests
    The Bible, Christian Faith & Apologetics, Music


  • Biography
    I'm a 33 year old male from Europe. A Christian, married, a musician-in-making, and battling Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Asperger's while at it.
    Due to my severely limited energy and near constant pain and fatigue I have to take life in small bites. My access to the computer is limited to protect myself. As a result, I may take some time before replying to messages, but feel free to contact me and say hi or something.
  • Real Name
    René Mulder
  • Occupation
    formerly Front-End Developer (IT)

Artist Settings

  • Collaboration Status
    2. Maybe; Depends on Circumstances
  • Software - Digital Audio Workstation (DAW)
    FL Studio
  • Software - Preferred Plugins/Libraries
    Cinematic Strings 2, Garritan Personal Orchestra
  • Composition & Production Skills
    Arrangement & Orchestration
  • Instrumental & Vocal Skills (List)

Recent Profile Visitors

785 profile views
  1. Yes, that's what I was thinking. I would feel best knowing the original composer at least approves. That is reassuring. Maybe I'm just being too sensitive about the issue. Also good to know there are options when you do want to do covers and pay your debt (so to speak) via royalties.
  2. Here is another piece that grew out of a improvisation session. I have been messing around with it for some time before finally putting it down on paper so to speak. I came up with new ideas while inputting stuff in FL Studio. I think it has some interesting moods that I'm not sure how to describe. The opening is kind of tense which then resolves to something more relaxing but finishes with something a little uncertain. Hence the title "Conflict and Resolution". PS: For the life of me I can't work with those pesky sustained strings How would you describe the mood of this piece?
  3. I understand. So in my mind it kind of comes down to it being a gamble. You know you are violating the letter of the law, but given the odds of getting caught, you take the chance and go ahead anyway. Not selling remixes makes it a safer gamble. In a sense there is a clash of values when it comes to copyright laws and I guess that's the reason something like Fair Use exists in the US. 1. Artists need protection of their creative works so as to avoid theft and loss of income. 2. The public desires to use and adapt artists' works because reasons. The spirit of the law is to protect artists against abuse of their works, but the letter of the law prohibits the public from taking something to make something else. At least when it comes to music and graphical art. Reading through my country's copyright laws is still on my to-do list. I have it bookmarked but I haven't had the strength to dig through yet. Maybe I should do it now Anyway, what I hear most people saying is: "It will be alright to remix game music, its a safe gamble". I can see the point, but would still find it hard to shake that feeling of knowingly "transgressing" the law. Need to think about this some more.
  4. You're welcome And thank you for the tips. I'll have to look into that more because muddiness is definitely a thing that keeps ruining my tracks i.m.o. Hmm, yeah, choices. I personally think the parts with multiple instruments are appropriately "grand" as they are. I only felt that the piano was a little solitary and distant in the beginning, but it is realistic in the sense that it feels like it is set on a larger stage shared with the other instruments that come in later. Since the piano does play a big part in the whole composition, it would be a shame if it got washed out because of reverb or something. It needs that clear rhythmic stuff. Will you be submitting the final version to OCR?
  5. I can't take too much credit for this insight. My co-worker once shared an article with me to explain why he didn't want to engage in a discussion about religion with me. The article pointed out that such discussions, much like those about politics and programming languages (at least online) tend to result in flame wars. The reason being that people have invested too much emotion and identity in their respective positions. I don't think you can escape that completely, but it is good to be mindful of that and ask yourself if you really should be so attached to say, your Operating System of choice. We live in an age when people, despite all the advances in communication technology, seem to be particularly bad at having respectful, meaningful and fruitful conversation about pretty much anything. I'm inclined to agree with Servbot#36 when he/she says: I do think there are some "objective" standards by which we can judge the quality of different works of art (music, literature, photography etc.). Or at least things we can "universally" agree on. But regardless of that I would say arguments about opinions on games are useless from the start. Especially when coming from the angle that you laid out in your opening post. I don't know exactly what sources you (John) have been reading, but if these arguments are coming from random kids on the internet, I wouldn't let that get to me too much. To have a semi meaningful discussion about good and bad video games I think everyone would need to lay out their criteria on the table first. I imagine these will vary per genre and per console (I don't expect PS4 quality on a Gameboy game for example), or at least some criteria may weigh less or more depending on those. The goal of the discussion should not be to convince someone who likes a game to not like the game, or vice versa, or to shame them. A better goal might be to learn more about the person you are talking to. For example, you mentioned Tales of Symphonia. That was one of my favorite JRPG's ever and I remember being so excited to have that coming to a Nintendo console. The animations, music and battle system (but especially the music) made me desire it greatly. Now, I actually have very concrete criteria for judging whether a JRPG is "good" in my estimation: 1. STORY - The story must be captivating/emotionally moving 2. WORLD - The game world must be expansive, and not linearly explored (ToS 1 = Good, ToS 2 = Bad) 3. BATTLE SYSTEM - Streamlined and varied, controls must make sense 4. MUSIC - Battle music must be good, since you'll be hearing it A LOT (FF7 = Awesome, FF6 = Not so much) 5. CONTENT - I want to take at least 40 hours to get through the main story and then have plenty more optional stuff to do 6. COLLECTION and/or CUSTOMIZATION - I like it when there are many items to get and upgrade/customize things 7. GRAPHICS - The fantasy world must feel "alive" and be rich in color and detail etc. 8. DIFFICULTY - An optional difficulty setting would be great. I don't want the game to treat me like a baby, but it can't be too tough either. 9. OTHER FEATURES - Battle Arena, Mini-games, New Game+, Animated Cut Scenes With this framework I can easily rank all the RPG's I've ever played. And I wouldn't call a game bad or good based on just one of these criteria. It may still be somewhat subjective, but I think no one would argue that having nonsensical, clunky controls are to be desired above streamlined ones. Nor would you prize vague, dull, colorless graphics over crisp, vibrant, colorful ones. [EDIT: Maybe the context of the game might call for vague and dull. When an artist is trying to communicate sadness and darkness, I think we can "objectively" agree that he has failed to communicate that emotion when he uses light, bright colors and happy faces resulting in much joy and laughter.] Anyway, at the end of the day it doesn't really matter all that much what someone thinks about a game. But yeah, when immature criticisms are leveled at your person for your opinion on a game, or your level of engagement with games ("hardcore" vs "casual"), I can see how that could get to you. I think I'd avoid discussions like that altogether. It could get interesting when we can get into why we felt the way we did about say, the story of a game. That may offer a window into the other person's soul.
  6. From my own experience I know people, including myself, have a tendency to bring identity into the mix, but never openly and up front. There is a lot of immaturity involved there. For example, I couldn't stand Playstation games because I wanted to be a Nintendo guy. I felt like I would betray my identity if I were to also invest in Sony games. It would be even worse if certain types of people were playing those other games. I wouldn't want to be associated with them either. So there is that group mentality that factors in too. At the same time I would have to do a lot of suppressing of the fact that some of those non-Nintendo games did appeal to me. I didn't want to admit that. You can kind of see the same thing happening with operating systems, programming languages and DAWS. An immature and uninformed mind (like my own in the past) would be very susceptible to taking a side just because someone says this or that is good and you are lame if you think that other thing is good. Maybe someone who comes down hard on games that a lot of people enjoyed, but they didn't is because of the identity thing. "You're not of my group, and I certainly don't want to be in your group." To knock a game from its pedestal might just be a means to deal with that. Am I making sense? As a side note: nostalgia doesn't always prevail. I have great nostalgic memories playing Mega Man 2 on the Gameboy. In my memory, the music was really cool. When I listened to the soundtrack again some time ago I just cringed and couldn't stand it anymore. I also hate the difficulty of the game itself. No matter how much nostalgia I have with MM, I would never buy another MM game again.
  7. Hmm, the first game I bought with money I earned is a lot harder to remember than the first game I bought with allowance... That certainly won't be the first game I ever owned. My first paid job was as a stock boy at a local grocery store. That must have been around the summer of 2000. I did a paid internship somewhere in 2001 too. I specifically remember buying Pokémon Stadium 2 for the N64, which had just come out when I was working at a toy store. So that would be a good candidate for being a first game bought with my self earned money. My first serious job started by the end of 2008. Up until then I guess I always bought stuff from the allowance I saved up. Most of my money went into Pokémon trading cards. My last game was Donkey Kong Country Returns (Wii). By that time I had become a christian and realized I couldn't go on gaming.
  8. Here is a new, loop-able piece I created recently. I was playing around on the piano and accidentally hit a wrong key doing an arpeggio, which struck a chord with me (see what I did there?). It ended up becoming a feature of the main rhythm . [Grammatically speaking, does the period come before or after the emoticon?] The rest came through improvising over the recording of the rhythm. Most of the effort went into getting the piano recording to sound right. The whole humanization thing is really frustrating to me, but I'm hopefully getting better at it. The other instruments I left quantized more or less. I imagine this playing in the background for some adventure game when the player is traveling inside or towards a mining or industrial town or something like that. What do you think?
  9. I like it a lot. Especially when more instruments are kicking in around 0:49 and later around 2:00 with the build up. The different instruments sound nice and clear and don't seem to clash all that much. I'd love to learn how to do that I'm not familiar with the source material so not much I can say about that. PS: I favorited some of your works on SoundCloud and did a "Follow", just so you know I'm not some crazy bot.
  10. How about: So what I'm going to do is slap Christian lyrics on the Donkey Kong Country soundtrack and BOOM! Untouchable My church will be praising to the tune of Aquatic Ambience. I'm pretty sure the old Reformers used popular tunes for their hymns as well. Just kidding... I'll have to look further into those pre-existing exceptions. I recall reading that new exceptions are not allowed to be made by individual EU countries. Or at least it will involve a long and tedious legal road before changes will happen. I assume any copyright cases are handled on the basis of the laws of the land in which the violation takes place? Say OCR was to host a mix both in the EU and in the US and an angry copyright holder comes after you. The US side would not fall under the Article 17 that you mentioned. But the EU side would? And going by the Fair Use scheme, I guess Nintendo USA would have to phone up Nintendo Europe to come after me? One thing that is reassuring is what people have said about the industry generally supporting the remixing efforts. I don't intend to make money off of mixing and am basically in it for the same reason most of you guys are: love for the music of our favorite games and nostalgia. To pay that tribute. And ideally, an unhappy copyright holder is going to ask you kindly not to distribute your mixes, rather than sue you for all you're worth, without warning.
  11. Thanks for the direction Gario. I like the Fair Use thing. Unfortunately for me this Fair Use is explicitly not available in Europe or the Netherlands (from what I've read). The available legal exceptions do not really seem applicable. I recall that Soundcloud's policy states that by uploading material I affirm that it contains no copyrighted material that I do not own. Even if the original copyright holder would not have a problem with my remix, I would by lying when I submit the material. That kind of bums me out. I guess this is an issue of the "spirit of the law" versus the "letter of the law". I understand that Fair Use would be our best bet (or else obtaining a license), but like you said, it isn't a silver bullet.
  12. Some time ago someone posted a thread, asking basically if you still remix and why. The conversation developed into a discussion of copyright, at which point I was a little overwhelmed and disengaged. The subject has been nagging at my conscience ever since anyway. Basically, as the title to this post suggests: I am having issues with the fact that I am technically violating copyright law when I remix and am uploading remixes, without having any kind of license to do so. I never really knew that you can't just go ahead and remix just about everyone's stuff, but now I do. I tried to contact Nintendo about licenses and whatnot, but I never did get a response (and I learned via other sources that Nintendo is being rather "uptight" about holding on to its music). Just now I was checking my Soundcloud profile and somehow I discovered someone actually stole one of my original tracks and posted it on their profile with no mention of the original creator. It was not remixed or anything. They even changed the title, but the song is exactly the same (which can be downloaded as mp3 off of my profile). I was disappointed to find out someone has taken something from me and potentially taking credit for it. I reported the person, but in the process realized I can be reported just as easily for the unlicensed remixing. I don't want to be a hypocrite and I like to obey the law. So for now I have taken down my remixes until I figure out how to go about things legally. No doubt most remixers won't have such a sensitive conscience as I have, but it really does bother me. Even if the chance of being sued is slim, I want to do the right thing. So yeah, now I want to find out how I can register my own music and how to obtain licenses for remixing (and figure out if it is worth the money). I'm not sure where to even begin. Anyone have any experience with this?
  13. I'm enjoying it too :) Sounds great :) I think I would probably like something like that better than say being Mr. Fancy DJ in front of a crowd of 10.000 anonymous people (but I can understand how some people may find that to be very thrilling). And when your audience is made up of a lot of friends I think that has the added benefit of them not dropping you the moment they lose interest in the music. And with friends of friends there is a probably a higher chance of meeting like-minded people. As a side question (and other people may answer too) : how do people you meet (in general) respond to the fact that you're a musician? Do they show interest and do they want to know more? I'm asking because I recently read an article that listed "your musical instrument" as one of those things you probably shouldn't bring up in conversations, for fear of boring people. I was kind of taken aback because I figured most people like and listen to music and would be very interested in hearing more when they learn you make music. Every time I tell people I take piano lessons and make music they show interest (and I'm not even boring them with esoteric facts related to the instrument!). If it were my rock collection*, then yeah I would understand, but come on! We make musics man! Yeah, I think I understand what you're saying. And I think I'll try to kind of separate the two things more: making the music and getting the connections. Connections can be made in other ways too. I was thinking about checking this local orchestra that occasionally comes together for practice. That might give me the "practice" of going out and trying to connect with people. I might even learn a thing or two about orchestral instruments :) * I don't really have a rock collection... well, maybe a tiny one Hey Patrick, thanks for also chipping in. I think that's an interesting point. From a business perspective that seems like a very smart way to go, so I guess I can see why even artists who are trying to make a living would go that route. Now that I think about it, I think there are three elements in play here and which element you value the most will determine your direction: 1. The product (the song, drawing, painting, sculpture etc.) 2. The consumer (the audience, fans) 3. The business (your income) If you value your product the most and you want to stay true to yourself, chances are you're not going to go for the "broad" approach (to use your terminology). If you value your customer getting what he wants the most, chances are you are going to go for the broad approach. If you value being able to pay your bills the most, then the move to the broad approach also makes more sense. I think actually finding a niche is pretty hard these days since our lifelong exposure to the mainstream music (its everywhere!) almost programs you to go that direction. I seriously can't follow a classical piece that doesn't repeat every 8 measure, and that shows in my music :P. Even when you look at tutorials online I'm stunned by the amount of people who are basically just trying to copy what is popular today. I'm not judging them, but I am observing it. Doing something original - especially with music - is a challenge. One final thought that came to mind as I was pondering what we've been discussing so far is that I'm going to have to let go of wanting to control my potential audience and how they'll treat my music. I can't micro-manage each and every listeners behavior, nor can I choose who is "worthy" of being a fan. So if my fear is to have my beloved product end up as something people consume and then forget... not much I can do to stop that.
  14. Thank you for joining the discussion with your valuable insights. I understand. And I share those other reasons for making music with you (fun, discovery, learning, emotional reward etc.) I think my personal history has a lot to do with how I perceive things now, which may make the story a little less relatable for other artists. All my life I have been kind of struggling to get noticed, to get attention. At an early stage in life I “discovered” that you need to have something going for you if you want to get that attention. I wasn't strong, or attractive, or whatever. My selling point then became drawing. And people would usually applaud me for my drawings, which would make me feel good. Then, as we got older life became even more of a popularity contest (high school). To make a long story short: I became increasingly isolated from peers and thus began craving the attention more (while at the same time having strong reactions against the popularity contest mentality). Years later I ended up online which allowed a shy person like myself new opportunities to interact with people and discovered that I could get a lot of validation for the artworks I shared. But still, the online world was just as much a popularity contest which just frustrated the whole thing. By now, I don't want to fall into that trap again of trying to seek attention and validation. I am still struggling to find my place on the playground with the other kids, so to speak. To state it bluntly: I don't want to always play by myself. So while I do get a lot of satisfaction out of making music, I don't want to be the only one listening to it (having just my mom say “nice melody” also isn't very rewarding ;P) You sound like you're a more stable, mature person who doesn't have that baggage. Also, having the dedication, experience and drive to do what you do seems very helpful. I'm generally very discouraged because of a number of failures in life. There are some personal roadblocks for me if I ever want to go that direction. And again, that may not be the road for me. I only discovered my musical talents a few years ago and I'm not going to bet all my chips on this. In fact, I do have other priorities in life. That said, I do want to see how good I can get and maybe I'll discover new paths along the way. I still have a lot of maturing to do in the first place (autism doesn't help...). I understand. What you're describing sounds pretty cool. Like you do get to play with the other kids in the playground. And yeah, that approach certainly sounds more fulfilling than just making music behind a computer screen. Hmm, so maybe desiring for the music to produce the connections is going about it the wrong way. Its asking too much of the work and of the people listening to it. But in your case, you already have the network and the social skills to pull something like that together. For me, even starting a connection, let alone maintaining one is an insurmountable task (again, the autism) Hmm, I see your point. I guess I said that out of ignorance. Time spent doesn't have to mean much, that is true. And I guess I've got to let other people have their own process too, even if that involves glutting the stream with what I perceive as amateur stuff. We all start out as amateurs. I'll clarify. I make music in my own time, for me. I started learning to play the piano a few years ago and quickly moved into making music digitally to save time on writing sheets. That opened up new possibilities that got me into writing for other instruments as well. Since I love VGM and have known about OCremix I do remixes on the side, as part of the overall learning process. Knowing there are more appreciators of VGM I figured I'd share my stuff here. I needed a way to link to my works, and that's why I have the Soundcloud account. I am not actively or seriously pursuing a musical career, nor am I advertising to get exposure. If it was my goal right now to get exposure and find meaningful connections with fans, and I wanted to not just have random people consume my music, then I agree 100% with your comments. I would not be approaching things in a very productive manner. Well, I trust your experience more than mine. I'm looking at it from the perspective of a (somewhat jaded) outsider but you and pu_freak have positive experience and knowledge of the inside situation. I think it is what I perceive about the music industry, modern society and people that is making me unsure about wanting to enter it. Maybe it is too early for me to make final judgments and perhaps I need to get out of the isolation more and actually find people who are artists. To learn more about the field. Given my personal limitations I'm honestly not sure if a professional music career is for me, but perhaps I can do something on a smaller scale, with smaller expectations. I do want to keep making music, that's for sure. Thank you for your respectful and helpful response .
  15. Thank you for your response. I hope I didn't sound like I'm unappreciative of the technological developments and tools and platforms that enable us to even do what we are doing now. I do think it is great that I can have a digital camera and take beautiful pictures without having to own a dark room and knowing the finer details developing film. And of course being able to put together cheesy trance tracks on the computer in just a few hours :P Like with many things, technological advancements come with gains and losses. If we didn't have all these things we would surely have to find other ways to get noticed and our reach would be much smaller (but perhaps more personal?). I don't think becoming a performing artist (in the sense of going on stage) is where I will be going, but if I would, I think I would experience what you said. That the best connections do come from those live shows, just like a visual artist will get the best connections standing in the art gallery. Having the extra platforms available is an added bonus, yes. The realization that I think the human connection is important to me is I guess just another step in the process of figuring out where I want to go with my music and how I want to go about everything that comes with it. Human relationships are extra challenging for me in the first place, so I have my ways to go. That's true. And having mass produced things doesn't have to be a bad thing per say (I'm thinking of Ikea furniture :P). Can I ask you, how do you approach a live show ? Do you expect and actively seek out the connections or do you maintain a certain "professional distance" shall we say? Do you see yourself as the hired person hired to perform the gig (i.e. I'm here on the job) or more as the artist looking to share his works (assuming you're presenting your own works)?