I’m solo at WildSnow Field HQ, high in the Colorado mountains. Winter is nigh. In the loft reading, I’ve got XM tuned to an “ambiance” music channel (yeah, I know, no comments, not exactly Waylon Jennings).
Snow sifts down outside, first of the season, easily viewed out our north window. I fall into a trance as mesmerizing piano music blends with the lofting flakes. Magical. Before the song completes I break my reverie and glanced at the sat receiver — song title is “First Snow.” Wow. Serendipitous convergence or blind chance? I’ll take the former.
Something must be done with this, but how?
I googled up composer Kevin Keller and made a reasonable deal for slideshow music rights. The hard part was producing, as I was going through some computer upgrades and shifting my video editing software.
For those of you who do video, I’ve been through Adobe Premier and Vegas Pro, and gotten to the point where incompatibilities and upgrade costs were getting ridiculous for the occasional projects we do. So I fell back to “prosumer” editing suite Cyberlink Power Director, which does nearly everything I need for fraction of the cost and hassle of higher end stuff.
Cyberlink never crashes and seems to effectively utilize my ram packed Asus Zenbook for acceptably fast rendering. It’s got some strange limitations (such as not being able to quickly mark and test render only part of a project), but workarounds are easy to find.
I have no idea if musician Keller skis or otherwise encounters much snow (though he apparently lives in the environs of New York City, so most certainly experiences a winter storm now and then). His music is wonderful, with energetic dance and pensive film scores and interesting tone poems, along with peaceful instrumental ballads that make a perfect compliment to relaxing with a good book and hot cup of tea. Or, if you want to go out of gamut, check out his Fantasy Noir — it’ll keep awake well into 29 hours on the Alcan.
I’m not a professional video editor. Thus, I don’t know if I really did Keller’s song justice. But I like the result, let me know what you think.
WildSnow.com publisher emeritus and founder Lou (Louis Dawson) has a 50+ years career in climbing, backcountry skiing and ski mountaineering. He was the first person in history to ski down all 54 Colorado 14,000-foot peaks, has authored numerous books about about backcountry skiing, and has skied from the summit of Denali in Alaska, North America’s highest mountain.