by Ahly Titchener
Song for a Misty Morning by Timothy
Late last year I received a video from Timothy that transported me out of my office into the paradise of ‘somewhere’ exotic. The video is a serenade to the mountains and trees on a misty day, and as I listened, I imagined myself far from home and carefree from all my responsibilities.
Timothy captures the magic of the moment.
When I asked ‘where on earth is the magical exotic place?’ He replied “I filmed it at the place I am renting, but sadly I have to move out. It’s a special spot, but somebody else will get to enjoy it now”.
Yes but where?
“New Plymouth, New Zealand” wrote back Timothy. “I recorded Song for a Misty Morning last year on my old rental property, which was a container house on a rural property here in Taranaki. I think it was a Saturday morning, and I woke up to the mist and decided to record it then and there. I filmed the video footage that same morning.”
Oh that got me giggling. That’s not exotic at all – it’s just a couple of hours north from where I live. Amazing how I got transported into another time and place altogether. Must have been the slow simplicity Timothy captured, juxtaposing with my end of year frenzy.
It’s a retreat that has created space for an album to be born. He is releasing his album Flute Songs & Lounge Guitar onto Spotify pretty soon.
I asked Timothy to share a bit about himself for our community. He writes:
I prefer to go under the stage name of Sosruko. Sosruko is a trickster character from the mythology of the Caucasus Mountains. He is kind of an outsider, and a somewhat morally ambivalent character, like Loki from Norse mythology.
I have played acoustic guitar for many years, and was first inspired to learn the Native American Style Flute about five years ago when I heard R. Carlos Nakai Earth Spirit – which remains one of my favourite albums.
More recently I’ve been listening to another album by Nakai called Island of Bows*, which is a collaboration with musicians from all over the world and was recorded in a Japanese temple. This album is really magic and deserves way more recognition than it gets.
When I began learning the flute, I had the sensation of being meant to play it, and it has really done my soul a lot of good. The time I spend playing is generally meditative and very peaceful.
There are some collaborations underway with a local harpist and some of those songs feature Native American Style flutes. It will also feature the Japanese bamboo shinobue flute, and the American style of panpipes called quills which are in a pentatonic scale.
Writing songs for the flute has been a bit of a challenge, because up until now I had only ever improvised on the flute & couldn’t really play the same song twice. [editor’s note: yup; I know that one]
I frequently play flute at a local bi-monthly event called Singer Songwriters New Plymouth – and it is a privilege to play the flute for the people there – many of whom are hearing the flute for the very first time.
I asked Timothy to share his video set up too:
For most of my recordings I have used a home set up with a Rode NT1-A Large Diaphragm Condenser microphone – just sneakily out of shot in the video! I usually plug straight into a Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 audio interface into my laptop. I’m not very precise with my microphone placement because I prefer to set up quickly and sit comfortably than worry too much about that. For mixing & mastering, I handover to my friend Chris Foreman at Swampshack Studios here in New Plymouth.
Thank you Timothy for your generosity in sharing a little about yourself. I look forward to hearing how your future collaborations go.