What Has Been and What Is to Come

The last few months have been a bit trying. Music Is A Journey, both this blog and the YouTube channel, has been held back more than anticipated.

I began the year attempting to increase my video output. Last year I had so many ideas I wanted to present in my videos but I ended up spending the first twelve episodes introducing new music. Not a bad thing, just there was much more I wanted to say. So I began 2019 by recording many videos, tackling topics I had scribbled down in early 2018. The problem was the time it took to edit and create the final video. I had been using a Lenovo ThinkPad laptop computer, which I bought before I ever had the idea to make videos. As such, the computer I bought was basically for Microsoft Office apps, surfing the Net, and other basic computer functions. Video making and even photo editing were not recommended (photos looked terrible on that display!).

But early on in the year, my father was hospitalized and I rushed back to Canada to see him. Then it seemed his health was improving, and so I returned to Canada once more in order to have a proper visit with him and my mother at their home. Most unfortunately, a couple of weeks after I left, his condition began to deteriorate once more and ultimately, he passed away.

July was, as always, a very busy month. My second job requires me to judge an English reading contest every July and November, and that keeps me very busy for about 18 days because I still have my regular job and of course my family. I also went away for a week to Ishikawa Prefecture for an episode of the NHK World program, Journeys in Japan.

By August, the heat was rising here in Saitama and my work room does not have an air conditioner. I was trying very hard to finish a video about musician and producer, Chris Gestrin, but the computer kept struggling as the video got longer. At last, it crashed and even after attempting to reset it there was nothing to be done but send it in for a repair estimation. The estimation came out to nearly the same price and I had paid for it. So, instead I bought a used Mac Mini and only just got that all set up and running this past weekend. One of my first projects was to finish off that video about Chris!

I actually have had a few blog topic ideas, but due to the heat and the absence of computer access recently, I have left all my blogs largely inactive except to post about my appearance on that TV program.

But now that I am back in business, I am looking toward the next few videos to make and two of them will be more introductions to new music. I’m very excited about featuring the first two albums in Steve Bonino Project’s Stargazer trilogy. The episode will include the latest releases by Kinetic Element and Marco Ragni, a suitable mix I reckoned because guitarist Peter Matuchniak plays on three of those albums. I’m also excited about featuring new music from The Inner Road, Joost Maglev, Seven Steps to the Green Door, and KariBow, all of whom have been featured in previous episodes. Also, I am anticipating the release of new music from Rosenkreutz, Murky Red, Band of Rain and even Grandval. Other bands I have featured before are working on new music, and I will dedicate an entire episode to Babal once they have wrapped up their Circle of Confusion of Tongues trilogy.

As for the blog, I hope to get around to writing about some of the topics that have passed through my head. Not long ago, I was reading a lot about Styx and there sure are some interesting thoughts there. For now, here are some recent video posts on Music Is A Journey.

The music of Densabi and photographs of Japanese mountains

A notice about the Lenovo crash and a brief introduction to the Sakiyama Tumuli of Gyoda City, Saitama.

A “Side Trips” episode about Virgin Steele

A dozen Vancouver bands (the video was recorded in Vancouver)

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Music Is A Journey Video Series a Success!

Music Is A Journey is posting its seventh episode this week. Each episode so far has featured different music artists and some of the albums on which they have played. Episode One was entirely dedicated to the late Colin Tench, and Episode Four was all about Oliver Rusing’s band, KariBow.

For Episode Seven, the video series turns its spyglass toward five albums – most of them recent releases – that have captured my aural heart, albums by Forever Twelve, Evolve IV, Colouratura, Fabulae Dramatis, and Babal. Clips from five songs from each of the five albums are included in the latest video.

Episode Eight won’t be recorded and prepared until late July or even early August, but that episode will be about the bands 3rDegree and Cell15.

Future episodes will first feature more artists and bands at first and then move on to specific genres and periods in the history of progressive rock and heavy metal.

Comments about the video series’ individual episodes have been very positive!

Episode One: Colin Tench

“Thank you so much for this, Peter! Very well done, natural flair, and a nice overview of the brilliant work of Colin Tench.” – Murky Red

“It’s good – it’s almost too good! You’re very good and not scared of cameras at all! You explain it all so well, and Colin must be smiling now! I’m deeply impressed and touched. Thank you, Peter!” – Pasi Koivu (Corvus Stone, Wolmari)

Episode Two: Petri Lindstrom, Blake Carpenter, Andres Guazzelli, Stef Flaming, Gordo Bennett

“Peter Skov’s videos are of such an added value to the music that I have the feeling that they will become iconic!” – Yolanda Flaming (Murky Red)

Episode Three: Steve Gresswell, Marco Ragni, Peter Matuchniak, Hamlet

“It’s Wonderful! Thanks a lot, Peter. Really appreciate it” – Marco Ragni

“A nice review of my musical past and present by Peter Skov – thank you, sir!” – Peter Matuchniak (Evolve IV, Gekko Projekt, Bomber Goggles, solo)

“Thanks for highlighting so many amazing projects (including mine!). – Hamlet (Transport Aerian, Fabulae Dramatis)

“Thank you for doing this. I love your videos and the way you promote the bands. The perfect pronoun of MRR. Much love and respect.” – Nick Katona of Melodic Revolution Records

“Another awesome job, Peter. Brilliant! You’ve got the knack, eh!” – Gordo Bennett (GorMusik, GorFusion, GorAcoustic)

“I’m truly fascinated at how it isn’t just an appreciation of the music, but how personal it actually is. You get to know the artists and dive into the micro universes of each one that many may never get to know.” – Jason Johannson (Theoretica)

Episode Four: Oliver Rusing and KariBow

“Peter Skov did it again and all I can say is ‘Chapeau’. Please take your time and watch this wonderful video. I highly recommend it to everybody who appreciates ambitious music projects, witty eloquence and charming presenters with a sense of subtle pronunciation issues. Thank you, Peter, for all your effort…” – Oliver Rusing (KariBow)

Episode Five: Phil Naro, Pete Jones, Grandval

“Peter was kind to talk about Grandval and the four fantastic guitarists!” – Henri Vaugrand (Grandval)

Episode Six: Sean Timms, Marek ArnoldChris Gill

“I had a blast watching this last night… even showed it to my wife… she was very proud. It’s a bit surreal when people such as yourself really enjoy what I do. Thanks for the kind words. I’m thankful, humbled, and honoured.” – Sean Timms (Southern Empire, Unitopia)

“Peter made 2 nice and funny videos about my releases with my prog bands… Thanks, Peter Skov – for your support. I really had much fun watching it.” – Marek Arnold (Seven Steps to the Green Door, Toxic Smile, Flaming Row, Damanek, etc.)

“Thank you so much for doing the video… Makes me feel like a rock star…” – Chris Gill (Band of Rain, The Nonexistent)