Music

There's a lot of music on this site. You can find my music-related blog posts by selecting "Music" from the sidebar under Categories. I also have released three commercial records, each profiled below with links to all the tracks. On the individual track pages you'll find lyrics, liner notes, and the song itself (free! although if you like, I encourage you to buy it to support my work).

Everything and More

Everything and More was my first release under my own name, and it was a two-volume set. Unlike my previous two releases, it's available for download only, partly as a cost saving measure, but primarily because I'm anti-stuff. This was in 2011, and a few years later, not many people even remember what CDs were, so I consider myself to have been on the cutting edge of a new era in the music industry. This web page may be the only place where you'll see both the front and back covers:

Front Cover

Front cover, a photo of the vast, infinite universe in vivid color, courtesy of NASA

Back Cover

Back cover, divided into halves, Day (represented by a photo of the sun) and Night (represented by a photo of the moon). Each half includes the track listing for that volume

Tracks

Everything and More is available at all the usual online music sources, like these:

  • CD Baby
  • Apple Music
  • Amazon Music
  • Spotify

Flow Theory - Flavors

Flavors was my second album, released in 2009 under the name Flow Theory. As I describe it in the liner notes, the album features balanced, full-bodied jazz-, blues-, and world-influenced folk rock with delicate floral notes and lingering finishes. I provide all sounds and flow — primarily voice, guitars, percussion, and sounds captured from the world around me — and mix them all together into a hot, delightfully palatable soup du jour. The name Flow Theory is a phrase used to describe the ideas of Mihály Csíkszentmihályi, who proposed, described, and conducted research into that moment when a person is fully immersed in what he or she is doing, breaking down the duality of self and other so that everything becomes one. When making music, there's a point at which all there is... is music. Cool name for a band, eh? The trouble is - I'm not the only person who thinks so. I started recording under that name in 2007, and later at least two other bands decided to do the same. I'm cool with that, but let it be known that mine was the original Flow Theory band, and is still the only Flow Theory with an album called Flavors.
Mastermind Terrill Thompson has created a crafty book of work that flows from song to song, keeping the listener involved and interested. — What's Up! Magazine
Flavors CD cover, featuring nine perfectly arranged tea cups with tea bags draped over the edge of each. Cups are labeled Reali, Subtle, Creativi, Sereni, Abili, Agili, Musicali, Digni, and Profani

Tracks

Flow Theory - Flavors is available at all the usual online music sources, like these:

  • CD Baby
  • Apple Music
  • Amazon Music
  • Spotify

Morality Rock

Morality Rock was my debut album, released in 2005 during the George W. Bush presidency. Morality Rock is music inspired by the subliminal backward messages in the speeches of the former U.S. President. This continues to be my best seller, and has received air time on the Dr. Demento Show and on progressive radio stations around the world.
Morality Rock CD cover, featuring a photo of President Bush flipping off the camera
It actually has a website of its own; check it out at moralityrock.com!

Accessibility of College Radio Stations

This post comes live from the National Student Electronic Media Convention, the annual fall convention of College Broadcasters, Inc (CBI). It's in Seattle this year, and I was invited to present on web/media accessibility along with folks from WKNC, North Carolina State University's student-run radio station. This is a very cool coincidence, since my co-presenters weren't even aware that I was once employed by NC State, and was a regular listener to WKNC in those days.

In fact, I'm a huge fan and supporter of college radio! Two of the six stations on my car radio dial are KEXP (UW) and KUGS (WWU), and before moving to Washington I was a regular listener of WKNC (as I mentioned) and before that, KJHK, "The Sound Alternative" in Lawrence, Kansas. Also, as an independent musician, the only radio stations that have ever given my music air time are college stations.

To prepare for my presentation, I thought I would do a quick informal assessment of the state of accessibility on college radio station websites. Hence, this blog post.

Continue reading

Introducing MOATmix

On New Years Eve 2015, I completed my latest music project which I'm calling MOATmix (MOAT = Music Of All Time). MOATmix is a celebration of the music that has shaped our lives for generations, and is now available by invitation only at MOATmix.com. Over three years in the making, this is my most ambitious, and arguably coolest, musical project to date. In fact, it's so cool that I've decided to limit access for now to a private audience by invitation only. If you're a close personal friend of mine and would like to be on the invite list, please drop me a line.

Happy Holidays, Stevie Wonder, & Logic Pro X Accessibility

You may have seen the new holiday commercial from Apple featuring Stevie Wonder and Andra Day singing "Someday at Christmas", a beautiful and poignant holiday song for the times, with lines like:
Someday at Christmas
men won't be boys 
playing with bombs
like kids play with toys
and
Someday at Christmas
we'll see a land 
with no hungry children,
no empty hands
Stevie Wonder using Logic Pro X
Stevie's using Logic Pro X on a MacBook Pro to do the mix (some online media sources have misreported the software as GarageBand—it's not). The commercial opens with VoiceOver announcing: "Track 5 Vocals. Track 3 Piano." At that point Stevie seems to press a two-finger command then starts playing the piano. Presumably he's recording his piano onto Track 3. Kudos to Apple for presenting accessibility so casually here. In a 90-second ad, only three seconds feature VoiceOver, and they never specifically mention accessibility. Stevie Wonder just happens to be doing the recording and mixing. It's a passing reference, no big deal. And it shouldn't be. It's just the way things are. Continue reading

#a11y rocks!

My song Man with Small F (The Inaccessible PDF Song), originally released on my Flow Theory Flavors album, is now featured on a compilation album called ‪A11y‬ Rocks!

#A11y Rocks! logo

Man with Small F features a screen reader on vocals, trying but failing to make sense of a PDF document that wasn't created properly for accessibility. There's more of a back-story, plus lyrics, on the Man With Small F Liner Notes page. Screen readers are tools used by blind computer users, enabling them to access computer-based information and applications via synthesized speech rather than a screen. The most popular screen reader is a product called JAWS (Job Access with Speech), which costs consumers over $1000 plus hundreds more for each major upgrade, released about once per year. For decades blind computer users (the most disproportionately underemployed of all minority groups) have had to pony up or be left behind.

But now there's a new kid on the block, NVDA (NonVisual Desktop Access). It's an open source screen reader that was developed by a couple of blind guys in Australia, and is available for free. All proceeds from the sale of A11y Rocks! go to accessibility-related causes, including NV Access, to support continued development of NVDA. The album is only £3 (under $5 at today's exchange rate) and you get a dozen cool tunes in addition to my own, plus you'll be supporting a worthy and much-needed project

Check out the A11y‬ Rocks! website for additional info. And thanks for supporting accessibility! Rock on!