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The Writing Process 

I saw an interview with music legend Brian Wilson a few years ago. The interviewer asked him if he started with a melody. He said, "No." "A lyric?" "No." "How do you do it?" "I just sit down at the piano and play a few chords until something clicks," he said. I sat there stunned as that's more or less how I write music. I get a feeling or even a buzzing in my head and know I have something to write. Often, it's in the middle of the night when the house is quiet. I will sit at the synthesizer, Fender Stratocaster or Martin D-12-28 (for some unknown reason those guitars work best in the creative process) and wait for something to pop into my head or noodle around until something sounds good. When I write with Tony Sheppard, we jam back and forth until a progression sounds good. I record the sequence immediately, as the creation is fragile and will dissolve unless documented. Lyrics are a different process. I get inspired by something I see, read, hear, or experience. Lyrics are about what's important at any particular moment. I guess I could use a little more lightness, and have always enjoyed writing with a partner. I'll write some ideas down and then go over them, usually cutting out words, the mantra less is more comes to mind. I admit I use a rhyming dictionary (hey if Sting does it so can I) and I like words that sort of rhyme. Usually, the music comes first, but not always. Eventually, a melody emerges and it's a joy when it does. 

Peace,

Dr Dreamwalker

New Sounds, New Musical Dreams 

Dreamwalkers Band rehearsed Sunday evening. We continued working on new material from Jeff Hocker and Tony Sheppard initialed last week. I am thrilled at the progress we are making with these new tunes. Jeff's "Dolphin" is a jazzy delight, while Tony's "Road Song" brings up echoes of surf music of the early 60s. I managed to keep up with everyone on keyboards during Dolphin, and used a Fender 12 string guitar to help the sound of Road Song. These are not just new songs for us, but new sounds, stretching the boundaries of our group, allowing us to move into new musical places. We also continued to experiment with key changes to make the songs friendlier to my voice (and to your ears). I appreciated the input of our drummer, Jeff Dillon, and bass player, Jeff Hocker, who encouraged me to look at the songs differently and sing higher. I think it's working. We will be out of pocket for several weeks due to various band members being out of town, but we are looking forward to gigging with the new material and chasing new musical dreams. 

Peace, 

Dr Dreamwalker

Dreamwalkers Rehearsal: Shaping "Dolphin" and "Road Song" 

What a great day to be a Dreamwalker. The ranks of songwriters with songs to play in our group went from one to three today. Our rehearsal became a day of creation manifesting, as we prepared the songs of Jeff Hocker and Tony Sheppard to be ready to play out. Jeff wrote the song "Dolphin," a jazzy instrumental based on his perception of Dolphins swimming through the ocean. I learned the keyboard part and when the groove came together, it was great fun to play and sounded so good. Tony Sheppard's "Road Song," is a rock and roll instrumental that really moves and is punctuated with some great lead guitar work by Tony himself. As we played the song a few times, the song began to reveal itself and was exhilarating to play. I saw the looks of joy in my friends eyes, as their musical 'children' are now taking their places in our musical world. I know the feeling well and am so happy for the band.

Peace,

Dr Dreamwalker

Seeing a Legend 

Any time you have a chance to see a legendary musician or band, go for it. Carlos Santana and the Santana Band played at Amalie Arena in Tampa, Friday evening. It was my great joy to hear Santana as if they were in a club, having fun, so energetic and relaxed, playing brilliantly, with pristine sound. It was very emotional for me, as I've always loved them and Santana was my father's favorite band. In fact the only autograph he ever asked for and received was Carlos Santana when they met in the 70s. Dad would have loved the show. Then it was a flood of memories of the many times I've seen the band, as if they held a road map of my life. Tonight's show was spectacular and he was wearing Lightning colors, which made things even better. What a sweet, wonderful musical experience. Bravo, Carlos Santana.

Dr Dreamwalker

The 60s Vibe 

Dreamwalkers are adding legendary guitars, the Rickenbacker 330-12, enhanced by a Janglebox compression pedal, a Fender 12 string electric and a Gretsch Tennessee Rose to our band's herd of instruments. The Rickenbacker 12 string electric guitar was considered The Beatles "secret weapon," popularized by George Harrison, who received the second one ever built. Roger McGuinn of The Byrds brought the chimey, jangly treasure to a wide audience on songs like Turn, Turn, Turn and Mr. Tambourine Man. Pete Townshend of The Who used a Rickenbacker live in the early days of the band and on several of their early albums. Tom Petty used Rickenbackers extensively in his live performances and studio work. You can see Rickenbacker guitars playing in many British Invasion bands like The Zombies, Herman's Hermits, and The Searchers. The Janglebox pedal was designed to replicate the Byrds sound, and it does it's job faithfully. The Rickenbacker 12 sound put it's distinctive stamp all over 60s music and continues on to this day. The Fender 12 electric came out of Japan in the 70s and is a bit of a rarity. It has a sound reflective of early 60s surf music and I love it as well. The Fender is easier to play, as the Ric's neck is very small. Finally, there is a Gretsch Tennessee Rose. George Harrison played a Gretsch Tennessean on the Ed Sullivan show all those years ago and I thought it looked so cool. The Tennessee Rose is a modern version of that guitar and captures to original Gretsch "growl." All are sounds of the 60s and have the vibe  I personally love the sound and am happy to be playing these wonderful guitars. We are looking forward to bringing the sound and vibe to some of our original songs as well as beloved cover songs. Check out the video section for a demo of the Rickenbacker.

Peace,

Dr Dreamwalker

Joni Adno sits in with Dreamwalkers Band 

Dreamwalkers Band's rehearsal, Sunday evening, brought in a fresh voice and new musical ears, as we were joined by our friend, Joni Adno. Joni shared her gorgeous voice, keyboard skill, and musical ideas with the band. The process of bringing someone new to an established group can be difficult, however, once we overcame the initial jitters, it was very productive and a lot of fun. Dreamwalkers Band is a very flexible and open group, incorporating new ideas fluidly and rapidly. The band played some of our original songs and covers, but also played some songs emerging from the new energy. The rhythm section, Jeff Dillon on drums and Jeff Hocker on bass provided a solid and creative foundation for the songs. Joni and Tony Sheppard have been in several different bands together and already have a simpatico in their playing. Joni suggested some key changes to fit my voice, which I thought were very positive and we tried out a few new arrangements for songs. Changes are certainly in store for us, as I brought out my Rickenbacker 12 string guitar, to add a rock and roll element to some of the songs. This is an exciting time to be a Dreamwalker. 

Peace, 

Dr Dreamwalker

Music Videos: 12 Years Later and A Dreamer's Story 

Two music videos were added to our Video section. 12 Years Later was written as a tribute to all who were murdered at the World Trade Center, and dedicated to my cousin, Lonny Stone, who died there on September 11, 2001. 

Here is what I wrote at the time. . . My cousin, Lonny Stone, died at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. I wrote this song in 2013, twelve years after the tragedy. 12 Years Later is the story of how, after death, Lonny's spirit came to me to ask that I tell his mother, my Aunt Evelyn, to let go of her grief, that he was fine. He looked beautiful. After that happened, I wondered how the others who died on that terrible day would feel about the fact that a war began and many thousands died. My answer was they would have wanted us as a nation, to grieve and move on. Video by Daniel Lee Schulman. Words and Music by Richard Schulman.

A Dreamer's Story was more of a home grown affair. I used iMovie and the Ken Burns technique to have a little fun with the song. All dreams depicted in the song were real (and mine). Jeff Hocker played Bass Guitar and Wolfgang Koehler played Lead Guitar. The computer supplied the drums. I played everything else and sang. I had a lot of fun putting the video together and the experience gave me a great appreciation of how difficult it is to do this well.

https://dreamwalkersband.com/video

Peace,

Dr Dreamwalker

Dreamwalkers Evolution  Podcast

Hello Dream-Gliders,

Playing out is always a great learning opportunity. Porchfest gave us a wonderful experience, and watching the videos (thank you, Carla Henshaw) was very enlightening. Integrating what I saw in the videos with feedback from people who attended gave me insight into the next step in Dreamwalkers evolution. So, considering this information along with conversations with the band members, I will be breaking out electric guitars to give us a bigger sound. I have always been more comfortable playing acoustic guitars, and won't abandon them completely, but as I have been taking marvelous guitar lessons from our very own guitar wizard, Tony Sheppard, and working with electric guitars, we agree it's time. 

The band is also expanding into original songs by Jeff Hocker and Tony Sheppard. I am very excited to work on these great songs and I'm sure our fans will love the new material. I continue to write and have a few new ones for the band to consider. I am also looking forward to singing with Jeff Dillon and Tony Sheppard, as we incorporate their voices into our performances. 

We are looking for places to play and worthy causes to play benefit shows for. If you have a cause you'd like us to play for please go to the contact page and let us know. If you have a venue and would be open to showcasing our band we would love to speak with you.

Peace,

Dr Dreamwalker

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  1. Diamond Filled Bouquet

Video Section is Operating 

The video section is now up and operating. If anyone has videos from any of our performances, Dreamwalkers would appreciate it if you could let us know through the contact section of the website. https://dreamwalkersband.com/video

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