Welcome to the Lovely, Lo-Fi Musical World of Babbitt. The tracks here are fairly diverse: different genres and arrangements... which is a point of pride. I've tried to be loose and precise, to be ragged but refined; I've tried to innovate and be a skilled musical craftsman; I've tried to take my Bowie classes and my Miles classes and my Jeff Beck and Jimi classes, you know... In almost all cases, I have no producer or engineer or anyone else really, making it very difficult to progress these Pro-Tools pieces beyond the LoFi DEMO stage - so please forgive the comparatively sub-standard audio if you can. My mixes are getting better and better, but you don't know how truly skilled these engineering wizards are until you've tried it your own damn self. But I enjoy the process so much - ever since my first TASCAM 4-track cassette recorder in, say, 1983... So cool, so cool. I'm happy to say, however, that at some point along the way I stopped being an imitator... and embraced the crazy rough diamond that is my racing musical heart.
All instruments played and programmed, all arrangements mixes and words, all vocals, horns and strings - by TB, except: ** Drums & mixing by Sam Kapala; *** Backing vocals by the great Lisa Redfern.
These tracks are favorites and, you know, still quite rough. But that's okay. J Dance is a soundtrack to a test motion project featuring Francine's son, Jourdan dancing - I love listening to it. The Treasure is about a sad journey to a sad song. Here We Are is hopeful, as it expresses the crazy unlikeliness of love following despair... And finally, the trippy If You Could Love Me Too tries to ensnare with it's moody, trancy groove. "If you could me too, we could give this day it's due..." Now I've added 2022's The New End of You just because I can. Cover created with dog photo by FLOUFFY on Unsplash.com
Some of the old, some of the brand new. Now or Nevermore indulges my more lush, string-laden side with my love for Radiohead, kinda. Wake Up Daddy is as basic a 3-chord rock song as ever, and an earnest cry about the epidemic of absent fathers. I've included my (so far) favorite Home recording of Chameleon Man, and Hit Parade is just another routine horror story of domestic violence and servitude. Nothing completes the set, leaving the listener with a little hope, a little love story about my one and only. Enjoy!
THE SOLOS COMPILATION (2023)
Excerpts from solo guitar work over many decades in a single track, you lucky people... I reached for Jeff Beck, Jimi and Fripp... and ended with me... Thank God.
MURDER OF BILLIONAIRE CROWS (2020)
Sloppy but true tracks from the vault. Most are new songs from 2018-2019. Paper World was written for an Instagram animation about an unfortunate "paper" man unable to navigate in 3D, and was then expanded to a full song. Maybe Go Walkin' is about being desperate in the city, and dialing a number you said you wouldn't... Thanks Anyway is a trancy, fever dream about, yes - some days there is no hope. Gaslighter - Well, I'll bet you think this song is about you...Thanks for Nothin' is just good old rocky guitar-slinging shtuff. Finally, Dark World is about our scary trajectory and - watching "...all these monkey-men and women throw it all away..."
WHITE & BLUE (2019)
It's always been strange to me, my deep resonance with the blues... I think of my "silver-spoon existence" and then I think of Robert Johnson... like I'm a stranger in a strange land. And basically, that's true. But then, we all do have pain and anguish and struggle, and I certainly have. You can't fake the blues, that's the thing. Everybody can tell... Here are humble offerings. Blues C Does It is a freestyle, sloppy rocker with whole-tone notes and me finally getting a chance to play the harp again. Remember My Name is a plaintive call from Maine to Mass where my true love lives.. Sweet Virginia - "Come on sweet Virginia!! Let your river run with mine!" Indeed. Making a Garden is a portrait of Frankie, "woman-handling" the garden - as her lover looks on with delight.
CHAMELEON MAN LIVE (2018)
Live show filmed in September 2018, featuring 8 original songs and an extended version of ZZ Top's "Blue Jean Blues." The concert took place at SPACE 320 in Newton, MA with a studio audience - and features musicians Marciani from Argentina (guitar and vocals); Pietro Gennenzi from Italy (bass); Juan Mahea from Colombia (drums): and Santiago Galeano from Argentina (Keyboards and vocals). Each of these monster players (and truly wonderful guys) are Berklee School of Music grads and accomplished composers, arrangers and bandleaders in their own right. Tom's animations, as well his films with Francine Zaslow were projected during the live show as well as integrated into the finished film, edited by TB.
TELL ME (2015)
I tried for some BIG sounds here, and there are some moments. Taller Grass uses only three chords (I'm very proud of that...) - if only to see if I could create drama using such a spare frame. I wrote The Good Life thirty years ago about our fair city Boston, and Ruff Revere. I tried to create a huge intro like Gabriel's "Red Rain." Guantanamo is a terror dream - and a metaphor for how so many of us live in fear. With the song, Tell Me, my partner, Francine Zaslow, and I created a reasonably elaborate music video that won some awards (Best Music Video / Los Angeles Film Awards). A very raw, original version of Tell Me was written 30 years ago, and amounted to more of a primal scream type deal. Finally, Am I Real? is another written in my twenties and reworked minorly... It's all about trading fours vocally, locking in to the clipped guitars like percussion.
OUTSKIRTS OF YOU (2013)
From Ice Station Nine, (a metaphor for the US and it's "out-caste:" the homeless); to the title track, Outskirts of You a kind of old-school epic ballad, not too far from Layla's house, these tracks were mixed in Portland, ME by the awesome Steve Drown at The Studio. I worked with a fierce studio drummer on both Wild One and "Ice," and it really shows. Bleed 4 You closes the show, a desperate plea to my future and only true love - who I had not yet met.
I REMEMBER YOU (2017)
A collection of short stories in a variety of genres - from a kind of wistful, "Chris Isaac" mood piece, I Remember You; to an Eno / Gabriel / Al Jarreau (?) love song, Frankie Full of Grace; to a mandolin-ian celebration of love, Better Than It's Ever Been; to a dark story of depression and abuse, Passerby - in a King Crimson trance-thing with still-sweet strings.. and finally, we've got Wonder Boy, a simple, yet satisfyingly dissonant, story of a one-hit wonder who "kind of falls asleep..."