Songs from EP on SoundCloud:
My senior project was to write, record, and produce a concept album in the form of a rock opera. The songs, when played in the correct order, tell the story of the album’s namesake, ‘Special Eddie’. The Naming Game is an old concept I came up with a few years ago to analogize life as a challenge towards the character. From start to finish, the album tells a compiled story of his life from birth until death, with each song representing a specific part of his life.
The themes of the songs touch on childhood innocence, drugs, sexuality, politics, and in a way philosophizes on life and death in the 4th song on the album. The last song, ‘Memorial’, is meant to be a meditative, simplistic instrumental track, and in a way represents the character’s wake and funeral.
I recorded in a professional environment in a studio owned by Cynthia Daniels, who has won a Grammy award for her production work.
The artwork was partially contributed by myself, mainly the picture of myself as a child inside the package and the picture of my ultrasound on the cover. All of the graphics and other designs were done by Phillip Yarnall, who has done graphics work for Jimi Hendrix, Metallica, and AC/DC. This adds to the professionalism of the album, because I wanted it to be more than just a demo that someone recorded in a basement.
Special Eddie and the Naming Game
Student: Adin Doyle
Mentor: Shawn Clybor
Domains: Performing arts
Faculty Grader: Carleton Schade
Documentation of Product
Photo album of recording and production process:
Exhibition & Presentation Summary
Project Presentation Video:
Project Presentation Powerpoint:
Link for music clip on slide #14:
Link for video on slide #17:
I didn’t consult any books for this project, as my mentors (I switched mid-project) were unable to think of books for me to read about the subject. Instead, I listened to and researched concept albums such as ‘Kezia’ by Protest the Hero, ‘Mechanical Animals’ by Marilyn Manson, ‘Love Lust Faith + Dreams’ by 30 Seconds to Mars, and ‘Tommy’ by The Who. Each one is a different kind of concept album, and each offers a different way to get the concept across to the listener. In researching them, I learned that a concept album is not just songs that tell a story, but can be any album with songs recorded with the intention of sharing a common theme(s).