“Music was my first love, and it will be my last”, sings John Miles on his 1976 hit Music. While I can’t say with certainty that music was my first love—that might have been comic books, actually—music has been with me for a long time, and it will definitely always be an important part of my life. I was always told as a kid that I was musical, and I think that is not untrue. I have composed (and remixed) melodies, written song lyrics, recorded my own music, and presented music shows on the radio.
After a year of “general music education”, I played the piano
for about 8 years between the ages of around 8 and 16, first classical, then
jazz. While I wasn’t bad, especially in the beginning, it eventually
became apparent that a career as a professional piano player wasn’t for
me. Although I enjoyed playing the piano, I simply lacked the bloody
motivation to practice.
Meanwhile, I had been writing and composing my own songs—since Pokémon started and inspired by it, see the “Pokémon” page—some of which I composed and played on the piano. I would continue composing songs for several years, and around the age of 12 I adopted a stage persona named MCWaris. This was to eventually become the basis of the biggest music project of my life so far, a band called The Fat Men.
Outsider music: the story of The Fat Men
Radio work and playlist curation
While I was working on The Fat Men, I started dabbling a bit in amateur radio. One of the guys from the band had a brother who had his own amateur internet radio station, and even sometimes hosted a show on a sort of professional (although small) station. We went into his studio and recorded some shows together. It was so cool, he had a mixing console and everything, and I realized that I really enjoyed radio. Soon after, I was looking for a way to promote The Fat Men’s music, and it hit me: let’s create our own radio station! So we did, and it was called FMFM 133.7 FM, which was short for… Fat Men FM 133.7 FM. Yeah, I know, I know… So I became a radio deejay, which I enjoyed very much. In the beginning, FMFM emphasized The Fat Men’s own music, but it quickly became a sort of all-purpose radio station, that we used to share music we liked as well as broadcast our own opinions! It was actually quite elaborate; we had various shows, each with their own host, for which we discussed the planning and content. There were shows for various genres as well as talk shows and sports shows. Although there were not many listeners, they actually enjoyed listening to the radio (a lot more than they enjoyed our own music, for sure) and some broadcasts even acquired a quasi-legendary status. I even had a side gig on a semi-professional station for a while (the same one my friend’s brother was involved with)!
One part of having a radio station was recording jingles. This was quite a fun affair that took creativity and some research, to find the right background music and sound effects. Speaking of sound effects, we used those quite often—at one point I had a sampler program that mapped keys of the keyboard to sound effects—with very comedic results, I might add. Another important part, of course, was assembling the right playlist for the occasion. Most broadcasts were about an hour in length and had to stick to the theme of the show, but I additionally sometimes chose to give one-off themes to playlists, and sometimes I just went “screw it” and played something that had no bearing on anything whatsoever, just for the heck of it. In those years, another friend of mine was famous for the excellent playlists he had at his birthday parties, and we would try to one-up each other with the best playlist (and the best invitation). We termed those playlists ziecke pleelÿst (or variant spellings thereof), which is a hard-to-translate pun involving the Dutch word plee ‘loo’. This became another one of our “legendary” in-jokes. In recent years, I have been getting into curating playlists again for (my own) birthday parties and the like. I really, really would like to make radio broadcasts again. During the coronavirus lockdown, when everything was remote and you couldn’t get together for a party, I had this idea of music nights with varying themes, where people could get together virtually and chill out to music. Although the lockdown is now over and we can hang out in ‘meatspace’ again, I still think it might be an idea worth pursuing. After all, back in those days where no one had ever heard of a coronavirus pandemic, we also stayed in our rooms to listen to the radio.
What I do now
I recently recorded a song of my own for the first time in years. It’s a coronavirus-themed parody of “Ramona” by The Blue Diamonds.
You can listen to this and other music, if I decide to upload any, on my Soundcloud page.
I also sometimes compose music on Online Sequencer. Actually, the music for that track is a MIDI I made with Online Sequencer, which you can listen to in MP3 form here:
Here are some more songs I made with Online Sequencer:
- Pachelbel’s Doo-Wop in D. A doo-wop version of Pachelbel’s “Canon in D”.
- MALASADAS. A remix—almost complete—of the “Malasada Shop” theme from Pokémon Sun and Moon, based on this version by Latios212.
- Sequence #1530879. Some random thing.
- Sequence #1531123. Another random thing.
Of course you are free to use and modify these in any way you like, just please let me know. Send me an email. I’d really like to know if someone does something cool with my music.
Page last updated: 3 October 2021.