About the C.Y.B.O.R.G. project: People tell me these are great songs, but I’m not a business man. Writing band bios, descriptions of my music, I suck at self promotion. But here is what the album is about:
The basic concept: (because C.Y.B.O.R.G. is first and foremost a concept album) – David Benedict is a fighter pilot in a dystopian future who crashes his jet during World War III. Although he dies, his memories are downloaded into an armored robotic body designed to explore distant solar systems. His mission: Make first contact with alien life.
Years go by, and his optimism fades as he slowly spirals into insanity. Memories that had been erased with psychological conditioning begin to re-emerge, triggering feelings of rage and betrayal.
About me: I’m a musician and amateur author, artist, and filmmaker. I work with Adobe Audition, Paint Shop Pro, Vegas Pro, Celtx and some other software to do the work. I’m happily married to my wife Torri (we have been together for over 23 years!), and we have a wonderful son named Muggy, who we love and spoil way too much, and who has a rare genetic condition called PDS as well as being autistic. I made a website about him if you are interested in reading more about this amazing kid: B6kid.com
I’m also 50 years old, and over a year ago I had a heart attack that damaged my heart, but the doctors are unable to determine why. I don’t want to go into too much detail, but it wasn’t an arterial blockage, and it isn’t a fibrillation cause. For some reason my heart just goes crazy sometimes (for no reason) and I have episodes of extreme tachycardia. It causes me a great deal of pain (angina, especially when I over-exert myself), and requires me to take blood thinners, beta blockers, calcium channel blockers, stress and pain medications, cholesterol lowering drugs and I’m on an aspirin regimen. I have had so many tests: MRIs, CAT scans, Echo cardiograms, stress tests, EP studies, I’ve had 4 heart catheters, and so I guess I lied and went into a lot of detail.
This is why I have such a sense of urgency about this project, and my musical career in general. I have an uneasy feeling that I’m not going to be around much longer, so I’m trying to get as much done as possible while I still can. I’d appreciate any help: SoundCloud listens, adding me to Spotify playlists, telling your friends about my music, anything at all. I’m at the point to where I feel I have nothing to lose. If you DO help spread the word, from the bottom of my heart I thank you.
About the science: I tried to make the science in this story as realistic as possible, but I’m sure I made mistakes. I hope you’ll suspend your belief in a few places and just enjoy the story for the story’s sake, but things like population projections and nearby stars with planets within habitable zones, their locations and possible futuristic technologies are as realistic as I could get.
CDBaby: I have already recorded, released and published the C.Y.B.O.R.G. double album (32 songs!) through CDBaby, but I’m NOT doing this for money. I have a suck ass day job like most people that (barely) pays the bills, and my wife mostly keeps us afloat with her sign language business TLC Interpreting Services.
I just want the music to be heard by as many people as possible.
Anybody interested in doing a critic or blog review, or wants to contact me, use my form at: http://daveryder.com/contact . The music can be streamed for free from Spotify, SoundCloud and other websites:
About the musicians that helped make this all possible: These guys have been with me for over 30 years, they are my bandmates, but more importantly they are my friends, and this project would suck without them:
Chris Rose played drums on: The Gardens Of Yokohama, Ignorance Is Bliss, Am I Alive, These Old Rocks, Bad Decision, Glitch, Floating, Memorial Day, Dust, On Fire, Alien To Me, My Only Friends Are Aliens, Big Black Sky, I Was A Man, and Red.
Kent Hall played drums on: Beyond The Sun, Silicon Hell, Man From Mars, Driving In Starlight, Adrift, Children Of The Void, This World, Lost [Sundive], and sang vocals on Beyond The Sun.
Don Cole played piano, electric piano, organs and synthesizers all over the album, I don’t know what all is him and what is me: if it sounds exceptionally great and cool, it’s probably him.
Dan McHugh played bass on many of the tracks, and sometimes I did. When we listen to it, we scratch our heads and say, “is that you, or me?”
Keith Halley played bass on Am I Alive, My Only Friends Are Aliens and Red.
About the artwork that goes with the music:
I created the majority of the booklet photos and artwork, but not all. The ones I did not make I’m allowed to use as they fall under this license:
“Virus” is in the public domain, created by Douglas Jordan of CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and photographed by Dan Higgins. Thank you, gentlemen.
“Death’s-head Hawkmoth” was originally a black and white illustration from an old encyclopedia (pre 1920’s, so in the public domain). I spent entirely too long colorizing it, airbrushing, texturizing and enhancing the skull image on it’s back, changing the antennae and adjusting the wing shapes to make it look more realistic, since I couldn’t find one that would allow me to use commercially. It puts the lotion on the skin.
“Mars” and “Earth” planet came from NASA – they are so cool, they let everyone have access to their incredible imagery. I love NASA. Anything negative you may derive about NASA from this story is not in any way, shape or form what NASA is and represents TODAY: This is a fictional story in which I’m imagining a NASA in the distant future (in a dystopian society during World War III). A fictional version of NASA that has been taken over by a desperate country fighting for survival, something I fervently hope never happens in reality.
The Parris Island “Iron Mike” is in the public domain because it contains materials that originally came from the United States Marine Corps. As a work of the U.S. federal government, the image is in the public domain. This one’s for you Scott Fiedler – I miss you brother: SEMPER FI! https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iron_Mike
“Ring a Ring O’Roses”, 1880, is a painting (oil on canvas) by Elizabeth Forbes. I photoshopped it to make it look more “real”, as if it were an actual photo. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elizabeth_Forbes_%28artist%29 Uploader: Waterborough.
“Starlight Express”, the outside cover of the Pianoforte Suite “The Starlight Express” by Edward Elgar, published 1916 by Elkin & Co. Ltd., London. The Starlight Express is a children’s play by Violet Pearn, based on the imagnative novel “A Prisoner in Fairyland” by Algernon Blackwood, with songs and incidental music written by the English composer Sir Edward Elgar in 1915. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Starlight_Express
“Bounty“, is a painting of a replica of the Bounty entering the harbour of Ostend, Belgium, by Yasmina, a Belgian painter who specializes in oceanic themes and depictions of tall ships. I cropped the image, and turned it into a black and white negative for artistic effect. I wish I knew what Yasmina’s last name is, she is awesome and I love her paintings.
Author:Yasmina. Uploader: Georges Jansoone. https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Yasmina.Bounty.JPG
“Sperm Whale Skeleton” was drawn by the English naturalist Richard Lydekker for the 1894 Royal Natural History, Vol 3. Originally, I mentally compared him to Stephen Maturin of the Patrick O’Brian novels, but upon reading his description of the whale in which he stated “in appearance the sperm whale is ungainly and ugly in the extreme”, I lost respect for him. Maturin would have bitch slapped him for making such a statement.
“Laser Beam” is a work of a U.S. Air Force Airman , taken as part of that person’s official duties. As a work of the U.S. federal government, the image is in the public domain. I altered the Airman’s face to resemble the CYBORG, and tilted the perspective. The military scientist operating the laser at the United States Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) Directed Energy Directorate is extremely cool: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laser#/media/File:Military_laser_experiment.jpg
“Skinner Box” was uploaded by a pywikipedia-based bot operated by Betacommand, but probably was created by Andreas J. Schwab, Dr.rer.nat., Assoc. Professor, McGill University, Medical Scientist, McGill University Health Centre: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/en:User:AndreasJS?rdfrom=commons:User:AndreasJS
I altered it to make the descriptions and arrows fit into a smaller area. As an aside, Skinner did not like the term Skinner Box, and did not want to become an eponym, so naming the song “Skinner Box” may be doing him a disservice. I’m not sure if I care, he did some amazingly cruel things to animals in the name of science, a practice still continued to this day by people of whom I suspect of having questionable morals and ethics. As for cosmetics testing and other forms of animal cruelty, it just makes me sick. I like chicken and eggs as much as the next guy, but fuck there’s gotta be a more humane way (don’t click that link if you have a weak stomach, which is ironic because it’s all in the cause of feeding our stomachs, which is kind of the whole point of my imagined World War III and population projections in C.Y.B.O.R.G., and now we’ve come full circle and ended where we began. Which came first, the chicken or the egg?).
Every other image was either made by me or is in the public domain.