The Simple Carnival (2 Albums, 8 Tracks)
- Jeff Boller
What is The Simple Carnival?
The Simple Carnival is a "band" (more like an ongoing studio recording project) led by Pittsburgh singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Jeff Boller.
Up until the current project, Smitten 3D, I played all of the instruments and sang all the parts on The Simple Carnival's recordings. I'm still playing most of the instruments, but I've been incorporating other musicians into the mix as well.
Earlier in 2008, the Me and My Arrow EP was released. It consists of three slightly edited tracks from the then-forthcoming Girls Aliens Food album, plus the title track -- a cover of the Harry Nilsson classic.
Beyond that is 2006's Sonic Rescue League Vol. 1, an odds-and-ends EP of early Simple Carnival recordings, and 2005's Menlo Park EP, a just plain odd EP with hardly any singing at all.
Does The Simple Carnival play live?
No. Maybe one day, if it makes financial sense to do so.
Where does The Simple Carnival record?
In my basement.
Can I come over to your basement?
No, not unless you're invited.
Do you want to collaborate on my music project?
Unless you're a good friend, probably not. I barely have time for this project, and I can't imagine taking on something in addition to Smitten 3D.
Are you really playing all the instruments and singing all of the vocal parts?
Other than these exceptions, yes. Every note you hear on The Simple Carnival's recordings is the result of me repeatedly overdubbing myself. Most modern production touches (samplers, loops, drum machines, AutoTune, harmony processors, etc.) are avoided or not used at all.
While I'm not opposed to modern technology (I use a computer for recording and mixing), I tend to stick to only the recording techniques that were possible before 1980.
With a few exceptions, it's all "real" instruments recorded and layered one part at a time.
What instruments are used in The Simple Carnival's recordings?
This is not a complete list. Upright tack piano, spinet tack piano, Hammond organ, Clavinet, Fender Rhodes, electric guitar, acoustic guitar, electric bass, drums, congas, flute, a homemade marimba, clarinet, violin, cello, Electro-Theremin, glockenspiel, ARP Omni, Sequential Circuits MAX, circuit-bent toys, hacked up cassette players, various percussion doodads, lots of homemade gadgets, thrift store finds, and dollar store toys.
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