Thursday, April 10, 2008

J-Rock Guitar Hero

I know I haven't posted in a few days. I will get back to it, I promise... but 2 days ago, I got fed-up and bought Guitar Hero III for PC. Ever since, I have been moding the hell out of it with custom songs. Last night, I found out how to make my own custom songs. So... coming soon... J-Rock Guitar Hero! My first song: BLOOD - Morphine!


Sunday, April 06, 2008

Paint It Black: Roger's Mix IV

Just before my 10th grade year ended, I had a big falling out with the friend that inspired the first Roger's Mix. However, we wound up having our Political Science class together the next year. At first, I was just letting bygones be bygones, but we wound up being on friendly terms again. When we did, he kept going on about a program called Kazaa and all of the hilarious stuff he was finding on it, more specifically AMV's (a DBZ clip where the dubbed over the "WAZZZZUP" commercial). I wasn't much for file sharing then, but after hearing all about this content before there ever was a Youtube, I had to give it a shot. What I found was not only funny AMV's, but music I was never exposed to in the form of videogame remixes, soundbites, and, especially, orchestral renditions. And when I finally got my own CD burner, it was time to take Roger's Mix to a new level.

January 2002 - Paint It Black: Roger's Mix IV

Kazaa opened up nearly infinite possibilities for the mix albums now. I was no longer limited to what I had already on CD. I could now go out and find the music I wanted to really put on the CD, as well as accidentally come across some tracks I never even new existed. Simply typing in words like "videogame remix" yielded a plethora of musical choices for the mixes now. All I had to do was choose the ones that best fit the album. As mentioned before, the driving force of this album was my discovery of fully orchestrated renditions of videogame songs, specifically from the Orchestral Game Concert series. This were beautifully done, professionally scored, adaptations of many of Nintendo's greatest musical pieces, mainly from the 16-bit era (God I miss ye).

Due to the amount of material I had for this, and all of the bases I wanted to cover, I made this mix a double album. With no real theme behind it, it kinda returned to the feeling of the first one, Though I experimented a bit more with giving the songs of the mix a natural flow. The first disc did this well, but the second disc really feels like 2 parts, with one hard transition in the middle. I chose the Rolling Stones' Paint It Black as the title track for the album coz it's the most sinister song ever, and kinda fit my personality during that time of highschool. The classic rock vibe continues, as even Bitter Sweet Symphony is a pseudo Rolling Stones cover. The symphonic work soon dominates the remainder of the CD, with a quick glimpse of what's to come in Disc 2 with Moby's version of the James Bond Theme.

The second CD though quickly picks up where Roger's Mix 2 left off (RM3 was completely devoid of humor) with a clip from the Jerky Boys, which was probably their best clip ever. The entire first half of the second CD was completely dedicated to humor, with the final track of the first half being labeled as "Nirvana! - Enter Sandman". This was indeed the name of the file, but when i downloaded it, it was actually Wesley Willis - Suck my Dog's Dick. Kazaa users were famous for these RickRoll-type antics. I even renamed a file "Dragon Ball Z - Bulma's Theme" which was actually Eddie Murphy's Party All The Time. The second half contained a mix of actual videogame song, remixes, and live band renditions, closing the album with The Vines' cover of Paint It Black. The art work was a pic of Frog from Chrono Trigger looking at Magus's Castle with a black and white color scheme for Disc 1, and Max Payne shooting directly at you for Disc 2.

Paint It Black: Roger's Mix IV wound up being the most popular with the kids around school out of any of the mixes. I guess that was due to it having a little something for everyone. It was a great gateway for the things to come.

Disc 1
01. The Rolling Stones - Paint It Black
02. Mick Jagger - God Gave Me Everything i Wanted
03. The Verve - Bittersweet Symphony
04. Blue Oyster Cult - Don't Fear The Reaper
05. Aerosmith - Dream On
06. Castlevania - Bloody Tears (Metal mix)
07. Tokyo Symphony Orchestra - Theme of Chrono Trigger
08. Tokyo City Philharmonic Orchestra - Theme of Samus Aran, Galactic Warrior, Big Boss BGM, Ending
09. Tokyo City Philharmonic Orchestra - The Legend Of Zelda Theme
10. Tokyo City Philharmonic Orchestra - Medley (Super Mario Bros.)
11. Tokyo City Philharmonic Orchestra - Star Fox Theme
12. London Philharmonic Orchestra - Time (as made famous by Pink Floyd)
13. Nobuo Uematsu - Aeris Theme (Piano rendition)
14. Beethoven - The Moonlight Sonota
15. Moby - The James Bond Theme

Disc 2
01. The Jerky Boys - Terrorist Pizza
02. The Minutemen - Corona
03. CKy - Santa's Coming
04. Unknown Author - Vegeta's Gay
05. Unknown Author - Resident Evil Sex Scene
06. Unknown Author - Krillin Prank Phone Call
07. System Of A Down - The Legend Of Zelda
08. CKy - Fat Fuck
09. Brandon Dicamillo - Chinese Freestyle
10. Nirvana! - Enter Sandman (Wesley Willis - Suck My Dog's Dick)
11. Star Fox - Corneria (Techno Remix)
12. Castlevania: Symphony Of The Night - Lost Painting
13. Unknown Author - Lost Painting (Piano rendition)
14. Unknown Author - Mega Man 2 Main Title (Rave Remix)
15. The Minibosses - Metroid
16. Kimmo Kajasto - The Max Payne Theme
17. The Vines - Paint It Black

Friday, April 04, 2008

Roger’s Mix 3: The Sonic The Hedgehog Mix

This one came about in the very beginning of summer break, on the way back from a trip to Key West. The van we were traveling in had a separate tape deck in the back that you could plug headphones into. So, I was back there listening to some random tapes and mix tapes, as well as my portable CD player, when some of the songs I was listening to reminded me of characters from Sonic The Hedgehog, my favorite video game mascot and childhood icon. I remembered the home made Gundam soundtrack my friend Kristen made, and wanted to do something similar for Sonic. As soon as I got home, Roger’s Mix 3: The Sonic The Hedgehog Mix was put together.

The tape version was similar to Roger’s Mix in that it was a mix of music from other videogames’ music, popular songs, and techno mixes. I put together the mix tape as a soundtrack, not labeling songs by their true title, but rather where I wanted them in the Sonic universe (Green Hill Zone, Tails’ Theme, ect). Most of this was due to the fact that, at the time, I had no actual Sonic tunes on CD, and almost wanted to make believe I could carry around Sonic music with me. The mix tape even made references to the Saturday Morning cartoon, as characters like Bunny and Sally had theme songs representing them.

Once again though, with the acquisition of a CD burner in January of 2002, the mix was overhauled. This was the first of the mix tape Roger’s Mixes that I remade onto CD. The biggest reason for this was my discovery of one of the best websites on the net: Basically, this website is a place for amateur musicians to remake or remix videogame songs, and listeners could download their creations for free. Once I discovered this site, and its plethora of Sonic tunes, I had to remake RM3. I decided that for the CD's cover art, I would use the ever enigmatic, but possibly coolest videogame cover art ever, the box art from Sonic & Knuckles.

This version had much more focus on the games, and I included as many Sonic tunes as I could. I did however retain some of the personal character themes, and stages from the mix tape. Showing the times a bit, Limp Bizkit’s My Way represented Knuckles. Luckily, though, this is one of maybe 3 of their songs I can still listen to this day and enjoy. One big hit with the people I handed these out to was Robotnik (now known as Eggman)’s theme. It was a track from the spiritual sequel to Twisted Metal 2, Rogue Trip: Vacation 2012 called “Big Daddy”, which made Robotnik seem like some gangsta pimp. I think it was actually the only real rap song to appear on any Roger’s Mix too.

One track that kinda “WTF”ed some people was my choice to have Linkin Park’s In The End as the ending theme to Sonic Adventure 2. I guess I did that because I was all emo that it was the last game to ever appear on a Sega system… which also had me a bit bitter. At the time, I was stretching the lyrics to be from Sonic and directed to the videogame fanbase for abandoning Dreamcast, which had crazy, original, fun games, for the PS2 (which had a very very lame launch series of games) out of mere name recognition, there-by killing Sega.

This mix actually ranks in my top 3 favorites. Its tracks I still listen to, to this day. Not only that, but it also spawned what became my online-gaming battle anthem (especially during my Return To Castle Wolfenstein days), Super Sonic [Brainbug Remix]. It’s the track I play every year at the Temple of Sephiroth in December, asking the fanbase if they know who the artist is. It also was one of the first personal mixes I made, as Sonic is really special to me, and is pretty much the inspiration for everything I’m doing right now.

Tracklist (Original Mix Tape)

Tracklist (CD Re-vision)
01. Sonic The Hedgehog - Main Theme (Super Sonic Dance Attack Remix)
02. Sonic CD - Sonic Boom
03. Sonic Adventure 2 - City Escape (Jet Moto 2 - Track 2)
04. Knuckles Theme (Limp Bizkit - My Way)
05. Razed In Black - Open Your Heart (remix)
06. Sonic & Knuckles - Flying Battery Zone (Jivemaster - rAAw Battery)
07. Unknown Author - Super Sonic [Brainbug Remix]
08. Tails Theme (The Mighty Mighty Bostons - Rascal King (live))
09. Sonic Adventure - Speed Highway (Motorhead - Ace of Spades)
10. Sonic The Hedgehog - Scrap Brain Zone (Jivemaster - Particle Brain)
11. Sonic The Hedgehog 3 - Bonus Level (McVaffe - LatinSphere)
12. Robotnick Theme (Rouge Trip - Big Daddy)
13. Sonic The Hedgehog 3 - Ice Cap Zone (McVaffe - Icecapped)
14. Sonic The Hedgehog 2 - The Marble Garden (remix)
15. Sonic The Hedgehog 2 - Ending Theme (Remix)
16. Sonic The Hedgehog 3 - Ending Theme (Jivemaster - Tight Finale)
17. Sonic Adventure 2 - Ending Theme (Linkin Park - In the End)
18. Sonic Theme (Crush 40 - Open Your Heart)

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Roger's Mix Version 2.0: Funny Fucking Special Edition

May 2001, May 2002 - Roger's Mix Version 2.0: Funny Fucking Special Edition

This one is a tragedy of sorts in that... well... it doesn't exist anymore.

This one came around soon after the first one, as I started to accumulate some comedy material (Adam Sandler, The Jerky Boys, ect). I was itching to make another mix tape, so, after compiling some of the comedy material, and some random funny songs I had, I made Roger's Mix Version 2.0: Funny Fuck Edition.

Once again, I remade the mix as a CD and renamed it Roger's Mix Version 2.0: Funny Fucking Special Edition. However, I almost completely over hauled it. Most of the song portions were deleted as the power of internet exposed me to tons of comedic skits and sound bites. The dominate presence on this album was my discovery of Arnold Schwarzenegger prank calls as the CD featured 4, and even had Arnold as the cover art. It wound up being a great CD to have around the lunch table to hand the headphones off to random kids and be like "Hear this!".

The tragedy is in that the CD art, after time, ripped the top side of the CD off... and I didn't have the CD backed up on my hard drive. While I do have some of the tracks, a good majority of them are now forgotten to me.

This did set a few precedents though. This was the first mix that I distributed amongst the kids at school. My closest friend Mike, though, was annoyed as I took the cow skit from Adam Sandler's "What The Hell Happened To Me", and chopped it up so that portions of it appeared in between every few tracks. In the CD version though, I left the track uncut, which my friend liked better, as it was easier to skip over.

This was also the first CD to have a theme to it, something I would use to great extent in future editions of the series. While the theme didn't translate well in the original mix tape (it contained some techno oriented tracks that were more dance oriented than comedic), the CD version, highlighted by the Arnold pranks, had many people dying from laughter from start to finish.

Tracklist (Original Mix Tape)

Tracklist (CD Special Edition Re-Release)
Possible Inclusions Are:
Fatboy Slim - Heaven
Adam Sandler - Joining the Cult
Arnold Calls Some Guy's Mom
Star Wars Gangstah Rap
Adam Sandler - The Adventures Of The Cow
Arnold Calls Mrs. Cleo
Stoned On Sesame Street
Adam Sandler - Memory Lane
Arnold Calls A Drunk Guy
Arnold Calls A Drunk Guy Again

Tuesday, April 01, 2008


Recently (and by recently, I mean the past few months), I've been really missing the weirdest thing, something that I thought I would never miss... highschool. More specifically the middle 2 years. Why? I hated highschool. I considered it a waste of my time, and still do now. So, now why am I missing it so much? I have a theory. I think thats because those were the years where all of this pent up creativity that I've had for years finally started to make its way out.

Anyway, the other night I left my TV on while I fell asleep. As I was sleeping, I was awaken by some very familiar... jazzy sounds... followed by dialog I almost know by heart. Cowboy Bebop was on. And since then, I got really nostalgic for a specific part of highschool.

The mix CDs I was making and distributing around school (mainly to friends). I think I talked about 'em before on here, but never in great detail. A friend of mine in 10th grade that I idolized (a little too much, who turned out to be a fucking hack) made a mix CD part way through 10th grade with some killer anime songs and videogame remixes on it (especially from Street Fighter 2). I really liked it as it brought out the nerd in me, and back then, anime was only beginning to become sociably acceptable (after the explosion of POKEMAN and Toonami), and listening to videogame tunes wasn't common (though I had been secretly doing it for years, but I'll explain that later). After he made a second one, I decided I had to start making my own, which was the beginning of several series of mix CDs that I started making. I guess I'll do this in a list form.

May 2001, October 2002: Roger's Mix - This one was the first, and was pretty similar to what my friend was doing at the time. Just a mix of various videogame and anime tracks that I threw together for my own benefit, not really to distribute it (though I did later when I re-released it). However, this was orginally a mix tape, not a CD. I didn't have a burner back then, so I used the tape deck on my boombox to record from CDs I already had.

I mainly took tracks from the games I had at the time. See, back then, Playstation and Saturn games sometimes had their soundtrack available on disc, so that all you had to do was throw them in a CD player. I mainly took tracks from 2 of my favorite videogame soundtracks ever: Jet Moto, and Alien Trilogy. I also added tracks from a homemade Gundam Wing soundtrack a friend of mine made, and tracks from the other friend's mix who was the inspiration for the disc. If I remember right, I did make a copy for that friend, and he commented that he liked how I used some of his tracks.

About a year and a half later (October 2002), after I had a CD burner, I remade it into a CD and added additional tracks (packaged it as a special edition! lol)... though most of the added tracks were radio-played songs. I dunno why I did that, probably just because I liked them, or felt they went with the flow, but I didn't like throwing in songs people knew well, and only did it if I felt it fit the flow or theme. Unfortunately, this practice became common later on, especially in the last Roger's Mix, but I'll talk more about that later. I also took out the tracks from Air Combat because I didn't have the disc anymore and couldn't find the songs anywhere. Another thing added was CD art... and I didn't like the art on this too much. It's just a blurred pic of me in a dark room smiling. I was more creative with the other releases. The last thing added was a short intro track with me saying "This is it... the very beginning... It all starts here." Reason for that? I was trying to be artsy-fartsy about the whole thing and impress a girl.

Tracklist (Original Mix Tape)
1. Alien Trilogy - Xenophobia
2. Apoptygma Berzerk - Fade To Black
3. Gundam Wing (Friend's homemade soundtrack) - Night Of Fire
4. Jet Moto - Ride On
5. Air Combat - Track 2
6. Gundam Wing (Friend's homemade soundtrack) - Heero's Dream
7. Air Combat - Track 5
8. Alien Trilogy - Respirator
9. Street Fighter 2 - Guile's Stage (Live Band Remix)
10. Street Fighter 2 - Ryu's Stage (Live Band Remix)
11. Megadeth - Duke Nukem Theme
12. Dick Dale & Stevie Ray Vaughn - Pipeline
13. Green Day - Last Ride In
14. The Jerky Boys - Bad Tomatoes
15. Primus - Tommy The Cat
16. AC/DC - The Jack
17. Metallica - Orion

Tracklist (CD Special Edition Re-release)
1. The Beginning (Intro Track)
2. Alien Trilogy - Xenophobia
3. Apoptygma Berzerk - Fade To Black
4. Gundam Wing (Friend's homemade soundtrack) - Night Of Fire
5. Jet Moto - Ride On
6. Gundam Wing (Friend's homemade soundtrack) - Heero's Dream
7. Jet Moto - Epic
8. Alien Trilogy - Respirator
9. Street Fighter 2 - Guile's Stage (Live Band Remix)
10. Megadeth - Duke Nukem Theme
11. Street Fighter 2 - Ryu's Stage (Live Band Remix)
12. Dick Dale & Stevie Ray Vaughn - Pipeline
13. Green Day - Last Ride In
14. The Jerky Boys - Bad Tomatoes
15. Primus - Tommy The Cat
16. AC/DC - The Jack
17. Filter - Take A Picture
18. Coldplay - Trouble
19. Metallica - Orion

Next post - Roger's Mix 2.0: Funny Fucking Special Edition