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CKMS Community Connections for 20 January 2023 with Tim McInnes

Show Notes

(headshot of Tim McInnes wearing a fedora and dark sunglasses)
Tim McInnes

Tim McInnes joins Bob Jonkman by telephone to talk about his music, collaborators, composing, pianos, and classical composers.

The interview starts at 5m20s.



Download: ckms-community-connections-2023-01-20-episode110.mp3 (55.3 MB, 57m31s, episode 110)


Time Title Album Artist
0m00s Theme for CKMS Community Connections ccc CKMS Sunflower logo (yellow petals surrounding a black centre with white wavies all on a teal background)
CKMS Community Connections
Steve Todd
1m00s Repetitive Stress Shadowlife | Tim McInnes (photo of the shadow of a man cast on a concrete sidewalk)
Tim McInnes
3m07s Basketball Rock
5m20s Tim tells us about Basketball Rock, more of a novelty song for him, but now the music he writes is labelled “neo-classical”. All his songs are recorded at River Music Studios in London, Ontario, the better for the quality of the music. Tim Schwindt, propietor of River Music did the guitar, bass, and drums; Tim (McInnes) played the piano and sang the vocals, and, of course, wrote the song . Tim’s first album was almost all ragtime music, with seven Jellyroll Morton covers, and seven of his own compositions in the ragtime vein. His second album, Shadowlife is almost all his own music. Tim says you can hear his style get more serious, for example he says Repetitive Stress is being picked up on dark, lugubrious playlists on Spotify. Tim wrote It’s A Sad Song and An Even Sadder Song in an attempt to create the saddest song ever written. Certainly it’s the saddest song Tim could write.
9m11s Tim is mostly self-taught. He took piano as a kid and teenager, but what he doesn’t know about music theory would fit into a good-sized warehouse. He finds YouTube useful for picking up music theory. Introducing An Even Sadder Song (but Bob plays Music For Money instead).
10m05s Music For Money Shadowlife | Tim McInnes (photo of the shadow of a man cast on a concrete sidewalk)
Tim McInnes
12m10s An Even Sadder Song
15m05s The viola and violin parts were played by Tim’s neighbour, Kelvin Enns, the principal viola player for the London Symphonia. Kelvin and Tim have collaborated on several pieces, including For Ukraine and Almost Home. Tim has also collaborated with Jessie Grandmont on the song Ghost Dance. Jesse is currently touring with Fiddler on the Loose (plug plug!) playing in Drayton, Petrolia, and even in the United States. He’s an excellent violin player, and Tim says he just plays some triads on the piano…
17m01s Bob comments on Tim’s varied repertoire; Tim says he’s narrowing down to writing only neo-classical music. But every now and then a funny song occurs to him, like Better Days, about vaccination, in which he also plays ukelele. Current events sometimes get Tim going, like writing a pro-vax song to counter the anti-vax songs.
19m06s Tim just had a birthday (the Big Seven-Oh); he started his “music business” after he retired from being a forklift driver. He started seriously playing music in 2015 playing at the McCormick Home for Alzheimers patients, every now and then sneaking in his own compositions. Once Tim started getting ready to record the songs just kept coming. All of Tim’s musical connections (collaborators, studio, playing venue) are within walking distance of his home. Tim stays out of the spotlight, preferring to do studio work and writing songs rather than performing. He’d love to find other people to perform his music. Some of Tim’s music is getting thousands of streams on Spotify.
23m13s Tim is working on a new song. It was something Tim had heard before — something he had written himself. But Tim says it’s not wrong to steal from yourself. Sometimes Tim thought he was in a rut, but then a brand-new melody occurs to him. There are hundreds of songs that have gone through the transom of his mind; there are parts of songs, ones for which there’s no ending, and some he’s just plain forgotten. Tim can’t keep two different songs in his head. A new song will knock out the one that was there. Tim set up a video camera to film himself playing, so if he forgets something he can go back to remind himself of the melody. Tim introduces Ghost Dance with Jesse Grantmont on violin.
25m57s Ghost Dance (Tim McInnes standing beside a statue hanging upside-down at the side of a pond)
Tim McInnes
29m51s Pandemic Rag
34m04s Music Box Waltz
36m49s Talking about the instrumentation on Music Box Waltz — it’s a celeste, also used in Mozart’s Magic Flute and Tchaikovsy’s Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy, then Music Box Waltz switches to a Fazioli-sound piano. Tim is a connoisseur, he can tell the difference between a Bösendorfer, Yamaha, or Steinway piano. For some songs he uses the effect of an upright or broken-down piano, for example in Silent Movie Heroics.
39m12s Silent Movie Heroics (headshot of Tim McInnes wearing a fedora and dark sunglasses)
Tim McInnes
41m44s Silent Movie Heroics is meant to emulate movies of Douglas Fairbanks Sr., swashbuckling, swordfights, and chases. It’s a change of pace from the serious neo-classical stuff. The slightly out-of-tune piano sound is an effect added digitally to a midi keyboard. Done professionally, the effects sound like the real thing.
43m41s On Music For Money that’s Tim’s brother Brad McInnes playing the Irish flute. Tim told him what the melody was, then Brad was on his own. Tim hasn’t collaborated on composing, but he has “borrowed” from other composers, for example Almost Home sounds a lot like Beethoven’s Pathétique.
44m59s Almost Home (photo of a the front door of a detached house, with snow-covered shrubbery in front)
Tim McInnes
47m18s Introduction to Chopinish.
48m00s Chopinish Tim McInnes | Selfie (headshot of Tim McInnes laughing, wearing a baseball cap and sunglasses)
Tim McInnes
49m43s Does Tim deliberately try to emulate other composers? He did in this case, although he says his composition is not as sophisticated, and doesn’t have as much “meat on the bone” as Chopin’s real music, but it’s a suggestion of his music. Tim suggests playing Backwards Boogie.
51m04s Backwards Boogie Shadowlife | Tim McInnes (photo of the shadow of a man cast on a concrete sidewalk)
Tim McInnes
53m15s What’s backwards about Backwards Boogie? Tim says it’s the left hand — if you play it backwards you’ll get some subliminal messages. Tim went into the studio and improvised. It’s not a three-chord boogie but a six-chord boogie. Tim prefers people use Spotify to get his music, wants to get Ghost Dance over 1,000 streams.

Bob gives the end credits.

56m01s Shadowlife (playout) Shadowlife | Tim McInnes (photo of the shadow of a man cast on a concrete sidewalk)
Tim McInnes

CKMS Community Connections Hour One airs on CKMS-FM 102.7 on Monday from 11:00am to Noon, and Hour Two airs on Friday from 3:00pm to 4:00pm.

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Bonus Video

YouTube: CKMS Community Connections for 20 January 2023

Show notes and podcast interview content is Copyright © 2023 by the participants, and released under a CC BYCreative Commons Attribution Only license. Copy, re-use, and derivative works are allowed with attribution to Radio Waterloo and a link to this page. Music selections are copyright by the respective rights holders.

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