I was delighted to have the recent opportunity to work with the wonderfully talented Kathleen (Kay Clarity) on several live music videos. She is a tremendous singer-songwriter in Saskatoon and it was wonderful to work with her and our mutual friend Liz. I was the tech guy, handling the audio/video setup (something I really enjoy doing! #geek) while Liz has a keen eye for photography and did a great job operating the camera.
Here is the first song we released last week: Forever. More videos are coming!
Some tech details:
Camera: Canon Rebel T2i with a 50mm Pentax prime lens from the 1970s. That lens is a pretty amazing piece of glass!
Lighting: Two Yongnuo YN-300 daylight (5500K) balanced lights as key and back lights, and a less bright Viltrox L116T, also at 5500K. All were battery powered and attached to microphone stands with 1/4″ – 5/8″ adapters. These were set up in a traditional, three-point arrangement.
Microphones: Shure SM7B for vocals and the always-trustworthy Shure SM57 for the guitar.
Recording: Fivefish Audio SC1mk2 preamp fed into an older Presonus Firepod, going into a 2012 MacBook Pro.
Software: Logic Pro X for audio and Final Cut Pro X for video. Video compression was done with Apple Compressor. (And yeah, my 5+ year old computer sounded like it wanted to cry when it was editing and rendering the video. Heh. It may be on its last legs…)
One issue that I have yet to fully crack is YouTube’s video compression. Depending on your viewing device you may notice some colour banding in the grey background near the beginning of the video. That is due to YouTube’s own lossy compression of what was initially a pretty high quality upload (ProRes). Apparently YouTube will sometimes recompress video into the newer/better VP9 codec rather than the default h.264 but I haven’t figured out how to make that happen. I do take heart in that I’m not nearly the only person dealing with this problem: I was watching the finale of the AMAZING fan series Star Trek Continues (seriously, if you’re at all into the original Star Trek, check it out!!) and even with their high-end production the YouTube feed suffers the same problem with background colour gradients. So I’m not alone in this, at least. :) I did insert some extra noise into the signal to limit the problem and it helped, but if you have any further suggestions for how to make YouTube (and Facebook) compress video more nicely I’m very open to hearing them!
Regardless, I am very pleased with how it turned out (11000+ views and counting on YouTube and Facebook). Most of all, it was a true gift to be able to work with Kathleen and Liz. Thank you both!
One of my longtime hobbies has been to record/play music. (See the “Music” button above for some stuff that we did about 7-8 years ago.) Unfortunately, I haven’t had much of a chance to do any recording lately but I think it’s time I got back into it.
I’ve especially been interested in some of the nifty features found in the latest versions of Apple’s Logic Pro X. With its MIDI abilities I’m able to connect my old keyboard and make it create just about any instrument sound you can think of. To aid with this, I picked up some new, professional instrument sounds from EastWest Sounds Online. Here’s a quick video of the pipe organ sound from their Symphonic Orchestra Silver package.
I hope to try out other instrument sounds soon. The package basically comes with a full orchestra worth of samples and they sound amazing. I’m excited to do more with them!
(And yeah, my keyboard stand bounces around a lot… 😜)
In March, 2017, I was blessed to join Lino Rulli and a group of 40 listeners on a Catholic Guy pilgrimage to Rome. During this time, we celebrated Masses in various churches.
Audio from my homily for each day has been published as a separate post on this website for those who subscribe to the podcast feed. I’ve also collected them all here on one page. Simply click the play button to hear each homily:
Today we celebrated a special Mass in honour of the 50th anniversary of Holy Spirit Parish! It was presided by Bishop Donald Bolen and afterward there was a reception in the parish hall. It was a fantastic afternoon!
One of the very awesome things is that a song was written in honour of the day: “Holy Spirit” by Sally Meadows and Stan Garchinski. Listen here:
I do not say this lightly: An experience happened during my recent pilgrimage to the Holy Land which I place as among the top experiences so far during my time as a priest.
By way of context, I was blessed and tremendously grateful to have been asked to be the chaplain of a large pilgrimage to the Holy Land with SiriusXM’s own Lino Rulli and Gus Lloyd. Over 90 pilgrims joined us as we toured the land of Emmanuel, where Jesus walked and continues to walk. We spent time at Caesaria Maritima, the Sea of Galilee (including a boat ride on the Sea), Nazareth, Capernaum, Mount Tabor, Bethlehem, the Mount of Olives, the Upper Room, and other places. In each place the Bible came alive in new ways.
However one aspect of the pilgrimage struck me repeatedly. As I was blessed to be able to celebrate the Mass in different locations, I could not help but notice one important feature about the liturgical books for each site. Typically a votive Mass was offered in these places that called to mind the Scripture story that took place there.
Site of the Annunciation. The Word became flesh, HERE.
In these places, the prayers and Scriptures were modified such that they emphasized the location. For example, at the place of The Annunciation, the texts referred to the Word becoming flesh, HERE. The Transfiguration on Mount Tabor referred to the glory of the Lord being made visible on THIS mountain. The Last Supper was celebrated HERE in the Upper Room. Every time one of these words would arise in the liturgy, they were presented in bold and all capitals so that we would not forget where we were and what had happened there. That led to a few emotional moments during the Masses as it hit me what had happened and Who had been present at that place.
But then, as I mentioned at the top, came one of the most moving events in my time as a priest.
The tomb was emptied. HERE.
I celebrated Mass at the site of the Holy Sepulcher, at The. Tomb. It was HERE that sin was defeated. All of history was changed forever, HERE. It was HERE that death lost and eternal life won. It was HERE that hope was poured out and love triumphed.
It is HERE that Jesus rose from the dead.
I don’t know how I held it together as I presided at that Mass. I could only imagine that it was a good amount of grace. It will take me a while to process what happened to me in that place, as HERE I reverenced the stone of the tomb at the beginning and the end of Mass, and Jesus became present once again in the Eucharist in the place where he rose in triumph.
All I know is that something changed in me. Somehow the Resurrection (which I believe and hold onto to the core of my being) became more real to me. Hope became more firm. Because of the Love that triumphed HERE, in that Tomb, I have, as the liturgy for funerals says, “a sure and certain hope” that my ultimate resting place is not in a tomb but in the Father’s house. And if I stay close to Jesus, who was and is victorious HERE, then his victory is also mine. It’s ours.
Again, this is not anything that I didn’t know before. And the same Jesus is every bit as present in my own land as he is in Jerusalem. But there was something about the tangible reality of that now empty piece of stone that affected me deeply. Perhaps St. Paul says it the best:
Death has been swallowed up in victory,
Where, O death, is your victory?
Where, O death, is your sting?
Thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
(1 Cor. 15.54b,55,57)
HERE is the place of victory. Not just in a cold stone 10,000 km away, but HERE, offered to you and me.
Some big news in Riderville, as the Saskatchewan Roughriders of the CFL part ways with their General Manager, Brendan Taman, and Head Coach, Corey Chamblin. Fr. Darryl discusses this with Frs. Geoffrey Young, Andrew Schoenberger, Cory Sticha, and Travis Myrheim. The MLB playoff hunt is also discussed, especially the Toronto Blue Jays and the incredible season being had by the St. Louis Cardinals. All that and more… next!