Taylor Phinney mix
For our upcoming Far Ride Artist Feature, we sat down with Taylor Phinney to chat about his transition from the professional racing world into life as a painter. During the course of our conversation, we also learned of Phinney’s passion for music, and he has put together a special Far Ride mix for our readers to enjoy while riding, reading and relaxing. His thoughts on the process continue below.
I believe that a work of art is defined by the people who engage with it and interpret it in their own unique way. This mix has a meaning to me, however that meaning might be different for you, and that is ok.
I also believe in the importance of improvisation and flow, mistakes, recoveries and post edit worm-holing. I love this platform because I can record a mix and get a live feel for the transition between tracks, but then I can go back and edit the whole thing after the fact and fine tune it until it sounds the way I want it to sound.
This mix I recorded with Far Ride in mind. I spent the afternoon on the track list and practiced a couple transitions, and then my girlfriend graciously obliged to listen to the headphones while I mixed on monitors so I could have at least one person engaging with it in a live environment.
I have been playing around with Ableton as a music making tool for the past couple years. However, I only learned how to “mix” about a month ago, a couple weeks deep into our seven-week Spanish quarantine.
Earlier in my career I would often ride and train listening to mixes from my favorite artists, notably Nicolas Jaar, David August, Four Tet, DJ Koze, Acid Pauli, Max Cooper, Bonobo ...the list goes on…and SoundCloud is an incredible resource for such mixes, podcasts and live shows. I have the deepest respect and admiration for musical artists and composers. I can remember crying five years ago watching a recording of Nicolas Jaar performing a boiler set on YouTube, just because he was so good, and I felt overwhelmingly inspired.
I never thought of mixing when I started to play with software, but I just kept tinkering with things, and finally, once I began to ask the right questions, the platform opened up. I still feel like I have a long way to go, but I have momentum and a deep love for music.
Sitting down to mix excites me to the deepest fiber of my being. I love it and I feel like time stops, that finally my ADD brain can calm...nothing to do but everything at once. It’s very much like painting, but I have all my resources directly at my fingertips which allows for the flow to remain uninterrupted for longer periods of time. Of course, there is ample prep time involved in having everything “at my fingertips”, something that translates to painting and something that I feel I often overlooked in my early years as an artist: yearning to be deep in the creative flow without necessarily creating the environment beforehand. Music is helping me to understand that I need to prepare more for the creation of visual arts as well. Ultimately, it’s all about optimizing expression and inspiration, although maybe that is just the ex-pro-athlete in me—always striving.
This mix is just over an hour and features two vocal audio clips, one from Sylvia Plath at the beginning and one from Patti Smith at the end. Allow yourself to interpret what they say through your own unique lens. There is a tone of nostalgia in this mix, with the opportunity to dance yourself anew. Be patient with the ebbs and flows, listen to the lyrics, and above all, enjoy the music whether you’re on the bike or in bed, (my personal favorite place to listen to a mix)—brush and floss your teeth, perhaps spark your favorite Indica dominant hybrid, plug in, close your eyes and surrender.
© Far Ride Magazine 2020