Archive for the ‘Video’ Category

It’s Friday again and we hope it’s the start of a great weekend for everybody! Here’s what the members of GRACE@ARMS are up to:

Bastion:

I’ve done some stupid things in YouTube videos like drinking a bottle of Tabasco sauce or speed-eating Qdoba burritos, but I hadn’t yet attempted to chug a 40.  Some people had been pushing me, so here it is (oh, I decided it wasn’t awesome enough so I went ahead and chugged a bottle of Tabasco sauce, too)!  Here’s the short version of the video.  If you want to see the whole version with the Capri Sun and me sitting around, scroll down!

Milo:

I’m fired up because the show on Saturday went well [Thanks, JB for covering! – All] and now I’m preparing to intern in Chicago this summer!

Bastion (again):

If you want to see the whole video (the only parts I really cut out are me waiting to burp), I decided to post that, too:

If you’re unfamiliar with GRACE@ARMS, you can find us on iTunes, Facebook, YouTube, and at our homepage, graceatarms.com (you can also find us just about everywhere else–just search for Grace@Arms or BastionAtArms). You can also keep up to date with my blog, my art projects, my music, and my madness at my Facebook, Twitter, and my original blog at graceatarms.com/bastion.

Thanks and thanks again. Keep rocking with all that you’ve got.
– Bastion, of Grace at Arms

Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) chugging a 40 oz Magnum high gravity malt liquor while wearing a Grace@Arms shirt.  This is a screen capture from a YouTube video.  All art and logos copyright Grace@Arms, Bastion Crider, Greg Crider LLC.

Bastion’s speed-eating burritos, Milo’s partying for Little 5, and Cooper’s slack lining!  Check it out!

Also, we’re a week and a day away from our concert at Mike & Joe’s in New Castle, Indiana so be sure to tell your friends, make your plans, order your sick new t-shirts, and pick up your GRACE@ARMS cards (worth $1 off the ticket price)!  In the mean time, here’s what we’re up to:

Bastion:

After I ate that over-stuffed Qdoba burrito in about two minutes, my good friend Andy Adams approached me about eating another one.  I felt like I spent too much time chewing last time and was pretty sure I could beat my time, so Adams and I sat down to tackle a pair of well-packed chicken burritos with fajita veggies, ancho chili BBQ sauce, rice, two scoops of extra-hot salsa, a scoop of corn salsa, cheese, and sour cream.  These things were monsters, but, when I matched my previous time of 2:08 and Adams polished off his burrito, we celebrated… by eating a second round of giant, over-stuffed burritos!

Milo:

I’m enjoying my final Little 5 week at IU!  BOOM!!!

Cooper:

My friend introduced me to slack lining this week.  Before attempting the endeavor, I was apprehensive.  In retrospect, I was right to be.  Slack lining is like safe, easier tightrope walking.  I used the word “safe” loosely.  If you slip, and the line happens to get between your legs, complications arise.  My advice;  respect the line.

Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) and Andy Adams eating giant Qdoba burritos with chicken, fajita veggies, rice, extra-hot salsa, corn salsa, ancho chili bbq sauce, cheese, and sour cream.

If you’re unfamiliar with GRACE@ARMS, you can find us on iTunes, Facebook, YouTube, and at our homepage, graceatarms.com (you can also find us just about everywhere else–just search for Grace@Arms or BastionAtArms). You can also keep up to date with my blog, my art projects, my music, and my madness at my Facebook, Twitter, and my original blog at graceatarms.com/bastion.

Thanks and thanks again. Keep rocking with all that you’ve got.
– Bastion, of Grace at Arms

If you’re in or around New Castle, Indiana, come out to see Bastion and Cooper play a short acoustic set at a block party outside of Imagine Music tomorrow at 1:00pm!  The event is set up to benefit local charities (like God’s Grain Bin) and local businesses.

Bastion:

Milo and I went t0 a hotel last weekend but forgot to bring a bottle opener so I improvised with a door frame:

Milo:

“When you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced.  Live your life in such a manner that when you die, the world cries and you rejoice.” – Traditional Indian Saying

A beautiful ballroom in the West Baden Springs Resort.  Photo by Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) March 2012.

P.S.  Those of you who follow my Twitter and Facebook know I’m a big fan of eating big things.  I ordered a sandwich from JBolts, a local deli here in New Castle, Indiana which I’d call the shop’s flagship sub, but it’s more like an entire fleet!  Here are two funny pictures of me trying to bring the giant down:

Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) in his home preparing to eat a giant sub-style Philly Cheese Steak sandwich from J-Bolts (JBolts), a deli in New Castle, Indiana.Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) in his home preparing to eat a giant sub-style Philly Cheese Steak sandwich from J-Bolts (JBolts), a deli in New Castle, Indiana.
If you’re unfamiliar with GRACE@ARMS, you can find us on iTunes, Facebook, YouTube, and at our homepage, graceatarms.com (you can also find us just about everywhere else–just search for Grace@Arms or BastionAtArms). You can also keep up to date with my blog, my art projects, my music, and my madness at my Facebook, Twitter, and my original blog at graceatarms.com/bastion.

Thanks and thanks again. Keep rocking with all that you’ve got.
– Bastion, of Grace at Arms

A recent back injury has stuck me at home long enough that “stir crazy” has become “stir creative.”  The first manifestation of this came when I noticed that Reese’s Cups were now available in both white and dark chocolate.  I’m a contrast fan (add that to your Facebook profile–“Interests: music, skateboarding, contrast, hanging out with friends…”) so I decided to pick some up and photograph them.

White chocolate and dark chocolate Reese's Cups sitting next to each other in a photograph taken by Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) in February 2012.

"Am I the only one blown away by the juxtaposition of white chocolate Reese's Cups sitting next to dark chocolate ones?" - @BastionAtArms

Enough people seemed to enjoy the image that I felt a little more confident when I revealed that I had also purchased some white and dark chocolate KitKat bars!

White and dark chocolate KitKat Bars sitting next to each other; arranged and photographed by Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) in February 2012.

"And this time, we have a white chocolate KitKat next to a dark chocolate KitKat! I am, yet again, awe-struck." - Sebastion (Bastion) Crider

This time the response was huge.  I don’t know how or why photographing white and dark chocolate versions of the same candy bar isn’t already a nationwide fetish, but this seemed to kick off a LOT of excitement and suggestions.  One that came up a few times was “build a keyboard.”  Since I’d been kicking around a similar idea during the week, I decided it was time to build the KitKat Keyboard.

Stacks of white, dark, and milk chocolate KitKat Bars arranged and photographed by Bastion Crider in February, 2012.White, dark, and milk chocolate KitKat Bars arranged and photographed by Bastion Crider in February 2012.White chocolate KitKat Bars lined up like the white keys of a piano keyboard and photographed by Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) in February 2012.Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) placing dark chocolate KitKat Bars (black keys) over white chocolate KitKat Bars (white keys) on the chocolate piano he built in February 2012.Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) eating a dark chocolate KitKat Bar while building a piano keyboard out of dark and white chocolate KitKat Bars.A piano keyboard made out of dark chocolate and white chocolate KitKat Bars arranged and photographed by Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) in February 2012.Dark and white chocolate KitKat Bars arranged by Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) into a piano keyboard and then photographed by Bastion in February 2012.White and dark chocolate KitKat Bars arranged by Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) into a piano keyboard and photographed by Bastion Crider in February 2012.Bastion Crider posing with the piano keyboard which he constructed out of white and dark chocolate KitKat Bars in February 2012.

Of course, I’ve never looked at something awesome and thought, “well, that’s enough of that.”  I kept thinking about the keyboard and how plain it felt.  I ran to the store.  A few dozen Hershey’s candy bars later, I had finished an electric piano which I styled after old Wurlitzer Electronic Pianos.

A model of an old-style electric piano made out of white and dark chocolate KitKat Bars, milk chocolate Hershey Bars, Hershey's Cookies 'n' Cream Bars, Reese's Cup Minis, and white chocolate Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, arranged and photographed by Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) in February 2012.A model of an old-style electric piano made out of white and dark chocolate KitKat Bars, milk chocolate Hershey Bars, Hershey's Cookies 'n' Cream Bars, Reese's Cup Minis, and white chocolate Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, arranged and photographed by Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) in February 2012.A model of an old-style electric piano made out of white and dark chocolate KitKat Bars, milk chocolate Hershey Bars, Hershey's Cookies 'n' Cream Bars, Reese's Cup Minis, and white chocolate Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, arranged and photographed by Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) in February 2012.A model of an old-style electric piano made out of white and dark chocolate KitKat Bars, milk chocolate Hershey Bars, Hershey's Cookies 'n' Cream Bars, Reese's Cup Minis, and white chocolate Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, arranged and photographed by Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) in February 2012.A model of an old-style electric piano made out of white and dark chocolate KitKat Bars, milk chocolate Hershey Bars, Hershey's Cookies 'n' Cream Bars, Reese's Cup Minis, and white chocolate Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, arranged and photographed by Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) in February 2012.A model of an old-style electric piano made out of white and dark chocolate KitKat Bars, milk chocolate Hershey Bars, Hershey's Cookies 'n' Cream Bars, Reese's Cup Minis, and white chocolate Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, arranged and photographed by Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) in February 2012.Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) pretending to play a song on the model electric piano which he built out of white and dark chocolate KitKat Bars, white chocolate Reese's Cups, Reese's Cup Minis, milk chocolate Hershey Bars, and Hershey's Cookies 'n' Cream Bars in February 2012.Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) pretending to play a song on the model electric piano which he built out of white and dark chocolate KitKat Bars, white chocolate Reese's Cups, Reese's Cup Minis, milk chocolate Hershey Bars, and Hershey's Cookies 'n' Cream Bars in February 2012.

There you have it!  If you’ve enjoyed yourself, then be sure to subscribe to my blog (either here on WordPress or at my original blog at graceatarms.com/bastion), become a fan of my Facebook page, or Follow me on Twitter.  If you are interested in hearing me play actual music, be sure to check out my band, Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) on iTunes and Facebook.  If you’re looking for both music and my silliness, hit our YouTube page here!  Thanks for reading and have a great day!

If you’re a representative of Hershey’s, Reese’s, or Kit Kat, and would like to contact me regarding the use of my piano, please email me at bastion@graceatarms.com .

It’s Friday again! We hope you had a great week and that the weekend matches! For those of you who missed Bastion’s cover songs in his Valentine’s Week series, here are their blog entries:

1. “Can’t Help Falling In Love” by Elvis Presley
2. “The One I Love” by David Gray
3. “Hold On” by Tom Waits
4. “Iris” by the Goo Goo Dolls
Or you can click here to go our YouTube page.

Bastion:

As promised, here’s a new (for those of you who’ve missed our last two concerts) song called “Remember to Breathe,” which I just wrote a few months ago!

“Remember to Breathe” by GRACE@ARMS

Milo:

I’ve been busy studying for my midterms because as soon as they’re out of the way… I can resume studying for my national boards!

Cooper:

Valentine’s Day was this week, and I spent it with the lovely Raeanne Schlotterbeck. We exchanged candy and gift items on Tuesday, and we will be going on a real date this weekend. Conflicting schedules dictated our plans for us. We will be be eating and then seeing The Vow this Sunday. While I’ve heard nothing but terrible things about the film, I’m sure I’ll endure it. It’s all for love, after all!

 

Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) performing an acoustic version of his song, "Remember to Breathe" in a video available at http://youtube.com/graceatarms.  All art, logos, and titles copyright Bastion Crider, Greg Crider LLC, and Grace at Arms.

Remember to Breathe lyrics:

I looked up, dropped my jaw to my expectations.
I forgot I’d forgotten my limitations.
I lost footing in my shifting mentality.
“Hello, can I get an… umm… Can I get a look in your eyes?
Can you help me with this–help me, it’s the look in your eyes.
I’d never seen–you see–but I see you and me.”

’cause I’m lost. I don’t care where I am as long as I
I’ve waited for someone to break me down to who I am
And question why I’ve held on to all this pain
When I knew someday I’d find all I’ve found in you.

I sit up. Did I really spend my dreaming time living last night?
’cause I can’t believe that I’d even stumbled into your sight.
You’re like a glacier racing for my hard disbelief.
I don’t know what to do ’cause I’m not used to being here in this role.
I thought I was doomed to be the leader; doomed to endless control
But I would follow you anywhere.

’cause I’m lost I don’t care where I am as long as I
I’ve waited for someone to break me down to who I am
And question why I’ve held on to all this pain
When I knew someday I’d find all I’ve found in you.

All I’ve found in you
All I’ve found in you
All I’ve found in you
Ooh, in you…

I see you standing in your robe of self conscious need
Like a shining bright sparkling–breathe
I’ve got to breathe. I’ve got to remember to keep
Breathing when I look in your eyes.
I want to kiss your neck or touch your lips, I want to see your eyes
Or turn your back so I could nibble on your shoulders ’cause I can’t
Believe I can’t breathe, be, hear, see,
Laugh at me. Laugh at me. Laugh at me. Laugh at me.

I had so many words when you walked through the door
But they all feel so tiny when I’m holding them up to your smile
Makes me want to cry out and want to cry inside.
It hurts to see you looking so good that I can’t stop the words
’cause you deserve to hear and feel the roar here in my heart
When it’s close to yours, you’re close to me.

’cause I’m lost I don’t care where I am as long as I
I’ve waited for someone to break me down to who I am
And question why I’ve held on to all this pain
When I knew someday I’d find all I’ve found in you.

If you just started following my V-Week blogs, I’m posting a video of myself performing a different cover song about love each of Monday through Thursday this week before posting a new original song on Friday. If you missed them, be sure to check out the other videos I’ve already posted:

1. “Can’t Help Falling In Love” by Elvis Presley
2. “The One I Love” by David Gray
3. “Hold On” by Tom Waits
Or you can click here to go our YouTube page.

Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) performing "Iris" by the Goo Goo Dolls.  Image is a screen capture from a video of said performance available at http://youtube.com/graceatarms.

Doing things differently.

I’ve always considered similar experiences with different people to be completely different experiences. I make it a point to learn something from everyone I meet. Every time I’ve ever fallen in love has been the very first time.

This aspect of me is particularly fun when I meet new people because that new contact with an entire life’s worth of history, ideas, and attitudes provides so many opportunities to learn, to grow, and to explore.

I’ve had the good fortune of meeting a lot of new people lately, but one particularly interesting girl is an avid reader with a deep appreciation for vocabulary and its ability to not only describe but to shape our feelings. Since I feel like the pursuit of such powerful words are core to writing, I was shocked to find out that she’d never attempted to write a story or poem in her life!

The combined excitement of writing poetry and exploring her brain overwhelmed me and I declared that I would help her write her first poem. Her nervousness was dwarfed only by her certainty that she was going to make a fool of herself, but her vast experience with written language and her natural empathy and intelligence quickly silenced all doubt as she accidentally wrote her first poem–a simple, elegant, free-verse description of her appreciation for books–in a matter of minutes (she was actually just organizing her thoughts when I noticed that her notes were already poetry)!

Moved by her willingness to share such an (in my mind important) experience with me, and without a fourth song for this series, I offered to learn a song of her choice. Moved by her bravery, I decided that I was going to perform and record this song in a very different way from any I’d done before.

She chose “Iris” by the Goo Goo Dolls.

I built this:

A collection of microphones and light fixtures arranged by Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) in his living room in Valhalla to be used in the filming of Bastion's performance of "Iris" by the Goo Goo Dolls.  A video of said performance is available at http://youtube.com/graceatarms.

Change of plans…

My original idea was to film myself playing several instruments and then layer the audio files in the way that I do when recording albums. I would then splice the video clips together to create a little tapestry. Here are some screen shots from the video-gathering:

Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) performing "Iris" by the Goo Goo Dolls.  Image is a screen capture from a video of said performance available at http://youtube.com/graceatarms.Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) performing "Iris" by the Goo Goo Dolls.  Image is a screen capture from a video of said performance available at http://youtube.com/graceatarms.Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (GRACE@ARMS) performing "Iris" by the Goo Goo Dolls.  Image is a screen capture from a video of said performance available at http://youtube.com/graceatarms.

Unfortunately, a headache and a soul-deep hatred for iMovie later, I realized that it would take dozens of hours to complete the project given my lack of professional video editing software and iMovie’s lack of anything you might ever want in a video editing program.

Salvage!

Fortunately, I was so proud of my lights-and-mics rig, that I left it up while I was trying to mix the videos. As soon as I realized the plans needed to change, I charged off and recorded a single-take version of Iris… with a really awesome background.

“Iris” by the Goo Goo Dolls

Be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss any of the love!  You can also find Grace at Arms on iTunes, Facebook, or graceatarms.com!  You can also find Grace at Arms’ singer, Bastion on Facebook, Twitter, and at his original blog at graceatarms.com/bastion!  Don’t forget to pick up your t-shirts and other gear at graceatarms.com/alive2012!

If you just started following my V-Week blogs, I’m posting a video of myself performing a different cover song about love each of Monday through Thursday this week before posting a new original song on Friday. If you missed them, be sure to check out the other videos I’ve already posted:

1. “Can’t Help Falling In Love” by Elvis Presley
2. “The One I Love” by David Gray
Or you can click here to go our YouTube page.

And now it’s time for some Tom Waits action…

Bastion Crider of Grace at Arms (Grace@Arms) in Tom Waits-esque attire performing his version of Tom Waits' song, "Hold On."  Image is a screen capture from said video performance, which is available at http://youtube.com/graceatarms.

Hold on… Tom Waits?

Those of you who’ve been to our acoustic concerts know that my version of Hold On differs drastically from the original. Tom Waits’ version of the song is what I would call “texture music.” He blends instruments and vocals into a beautifully complex sound that breathes slowly from the beginning to the end of the song. My version, on the other hand, simplifies the music into a more rock feel, which in turn puts a greater focus on Tom’s absolutely incredible lyrics.

The other significant change I’ve made to the original is in the third verse. In the original version, Tom sings, “St. Louis got the best of me.” I don’t know what the line means, but I have to assume that it relates to a personal experience. I don’t think that singing a line I don’t understand in any way preserves the heart of the song, so I have changed the line to “Phoenix stole the soul from me,” which relates a personal experience of my own, thereby preserving both the cryptic nature of the line in the audience’s ears and maintaining the level of personal investment on the part of the artist.

Love: Romantic and Otherwise

The story told in “Hold On” obviously includes plenty of romance and heartbreak, but the instance of love which I find most moving is of an entirely different kind.

I recorded the vast majority of Chrysalis myself, did all of the editing and mixing myself, and put more than one hundred hours into the album art. I spent my entire life savings (and then some) publishing Chrysalis and am solely responsible for marketing it. I wrote every note of every instrument on that CD. I wrote both Believe and No Way Home as alternatives to suicide. I literally have more hours in Chrysalis than in college and law school combined.

The end result of all of this work, however, is little more than a prayer. Chrysalis is my outstretched palm. Its value comes from the connection that it makes with listeners–when people play my songs and for a moment, their hearts connect with mine.

Today, people tell me about them and it moves me to no end. Now, when I take the stage and feel the hearts of the audience. When I was putting in the vast majority of those long, painful hours, though, there was nobody listening. There was no connection, no validation, and no music. All I had was hope and the song inside my head.

The second half of the fourth verse of “Hold On” sings the story of that experience in a way so moving that I’ve never been able to sing it without throwing my entire heart into it. There’s certainly a story of romance in this song, but what I find most moving is this short story about my heart:

But it’s so hard to dance that way; when it’s cold and there’s no music. Your old hometown’s so far away, but inside your head, there’s a record playing a song called ‘Hold On.’

Hold On, by Tom Waits

 

Be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss any of the love!  You can also find Grace at Arms on iTunes, Facebook, or graceatarms.com!  You can also find Grace at Arms’ singer, Bastion on Facebook, Twitter, and at his original blog at graceatarms.com/bastion!  Don’t forget to pick up your t-shirts and other gear at graceatarms.com/alive2012!