China Street

China Street sample (0:36)

What its about

A juxtaposition of the exotic and the mundane

Well ... um ... actually ... its just the name of a street in Lancaster

How it was written

As usual it started with a riff (0:12)
China Street tabs for riff 1

The third chord can be analysed 600 different ways so its just listed as a variant: "A var"

The riff was offered to a group of web-based songwriters to see if anyone was interested in a collaboration but sadly there were no takers. One member commented that it sounded dissonant because of the D# and E notes and that got me thinking about discords

Discords are produced by two notes a semitone apart (such as D# and E) so decided to look at melodies and chord progressions based on these minor seconds. Since discords sound pretty good in Chinese and Japanese music it seemed a good idea to use a koto instead of a guitar. The second riff followed pretty quickly

Second riff played by koto over modified chords (0:12)
China Street riff 2

Sounded pretty harmonious so far so decided to go completely Japanese and add taiko drums, chinese cymbals, synth pads, bells, whistles, you name it and the song was off and running

All this commotion and dissonance clearly pointed to the need for a zen ending. The sound of one hand clapping seemed a bit extreme so compromised by adding a couple of beats silence to the last 8-bar sections

Zen deep end bass (0:12)

China Street peace

China Street ending