A Better Life

Chip Gibbons

A song expressing concern for the future of mankind that is built on top of the Morse Code for SOS, the universal distress signal.

This song expresses distress over the current state of mankind on our planet. Of course there is a lot that is great for many of us in our current lives, but there are also many problems, for example economic, environmental, political problems that are not being taken seriously. We may already be past the point of no return with some of them.

This song began as a simple acoustic arrangement but evolved into something with a greater sense of urgency, one of the reasons I added horns to the arrangement. The music also rides on top of the Morse Code for SOS, which is three dots, three dashes, three dots. SOS stands for Save Our Souls which is the universal distress signal.

The song also changes time signatures, going from 4/4, to 3/4 (waltz) in the bridge, and then back to 4/4.

In addition the music deviates from a straight D minor key, using an A major chord wherever an A minor would be expected.

One problem with the idea of a better life is that everybody has their own idea of what a better life is. Humans have long fought wars over whose idea of a better life is better.

The album cover, which I also designed, reflects this. The picture frames contain blank canvases so that others can photoshop their ideas for a better life into them and distribute them on social media. You might put your favorite presidential candidate in there or a religious figure or some other symbol or image that is important to you. This will promote the song, but also make people think about what their own better life would be.

Audience participation helps.

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Food Is a Drug

Chip Gibbons

A fun upbeat song about the relationship between emotions and eating. Composed on an iPad using GarageBand, the quality of the production will surprise you. Like a good meal, it's meant to be shared with your friends.

As a songwriter/composer I try to explore different styles of music. My first album, "Billion Dollar Pill" was more pop/rock/folk influenced. My second, "Isolated Incidents" was synth based, instrumental, and experimental. The three "Trumplandia Cathedral" singles are electronic and dance oriented with an added mystery element thrown in.

This latest single, which was actually written before many of the other songs, is based on the classic 12-bar blues structure, with some funk/rock elements thrown in. It also has experimental elements and a lyric with something to think about. It was written, mixed and mastered exclusively on an iPad using GarageBand.

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Billion Dollar Pill

Chip Gibbons

An intimate, thoughtful, unique collection of beautifully arranged songs written, performed and produced by one man.

From the light rock satire of the title track, "Billion Dollar Pill", to the thoughtful musings on quantum physics in "Oh" and the layered voices of "Your Face", this album offers a selection of tracks outside the mainstream of pop music. The lyrical content deals with subjects like depression ("Inside a Hole"), war and father/son relationships ("Father"), sadness at Christmastime ("Anyway"), and the inevitability of death after a lifetime of enduring enigmatic realities ("The Song in My Heart").

All tracks on this album were written, performed and produced by Chip Gibbons. When no committees are involved in the creative process, it is bound to be the expression of one individual's vision. By itself, that doesn't guarantee a deeply personal or intimate result, but it certainly leaves the door wide open for such a result to occur. That is what happened with this collection of music.

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E Major Blues 80 BPM Backing Track

Chip Gibbons

This is a 12-bar-blues backing track with a tempo of 80 BPM. It is straight time, not swung. It's a great way to stretch your creativity and more fun that practicing with a metronome.

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E Major Blues 100 BPM Backing Track

Chip Gibbons

This is a backing track for practice and pleasure. It's a 12-bar-blues instrumental with drum, bass and synth tracks, just waiting for you to add guitar or another instrument to it. Playing with a backing track is more fun than just a metronome. Have fun!

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Major Betty Blues Backing Tracks

Chip Gibbons

A spacious 12-bar-blues backing track in all major keys at both 110 bpm and 90 bpm for practice and improvisation.

It's way more fun to practice and improvise to backing tracks instead of that boring monotonous metronome. This album allows you to practice or improvise in all major keys at two tempos. You can play through them in the album order or create your own playlists so that you can play through them in the order that works best for you. Regardless what instrument you play these tracks are great for:

  • Practicing and improvising on all the major scales.
  • Learning the 1, 4, and 5 chords in all the major scales and all their inversions.
  • Learning different ways of expressing the chords like arpeggios, or block chords.
  • Try playing the minor pentatonic scale of the relative minor against the major. (Like playing A minor pentatonic with C major backing track.
  • There's a lot of space in these backing tracks so you can let your imagination take you where it leads.
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Relative Minor Blues Backing Tracks

Chip Gibbons

Fun 12-bar-blues backing tracks in all the relative minor keys, in two tempos for practice and improvisation.

It's way more fun to practice and improvise to backing tracks instead of that boring monotonous metronome. This album allows you to practice or improvise in all relative minor keys at two tempos. If you don't know what relative minor is it's the minor scale this has its root a minor third below the root of a major scale. For example: the relative minor for C major is A minor, and it uses the same notes as the C major scale but has a very different (and minor) sound.

You can play through these tracks in the album order or create your own playlists so that you can play through them in the order that works best for you. Regardless what instrument you play these tracks are great for:

  • Practicing and improvising on all the relative minor scales.
  • Learning the 1, 4, and 5 chords in all the relative minor scales and all their inversions.
  • Learning different ways of expressing the chords like arpeggios, or block chords.
  • Try practicing/improvising using the minor pentatonic scale.
  • There's a lot of space in these backing tracks so you can let your imagination take you where it leads.
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