Herbanism, 20 Years Later
20 years ago my first album was pumped through the international distribution network that was the recording industry. Little did I realize that the CD format was peaking and only 3 years later Napster would come along and signal the end of an era.
The name of my CD, “Herbanism,” referred to a melding of the natural and the artificial, as did the name under which I recorded it; Electro Organic Sound System. I was exploring electronic instruments — often thought of as cold and artificial — and their ability to create warm, natural sounds.
Since then music is production, distribution, and consumption have fundamentally shifted. Herbanism was recorded with analog synthesizers, drum machines, outboard effects processors, and samplers, often directly to a 4-track cassette. It was a lot of work preparing the album for digitization to CD, and then distribution of the physical product into brick-and-mortar stores where it would spread through industry magazines and word-of-mouth.
That was then and this is 2016. To celebrate Herbanism’s 20th Anniversary I’ve created a special edit on my laptop and uploaded it to Mixcloud and Soundcloud. If you want to listen to the original tracks you can download them through iTunes or stream them with Spotify. My, how things have changed!