Various – Regional Zeal

Various - Regional Zeal LP front cover
Various - Regional Zeal LP back cover
Various - Regional Zeal LP side 1

Produced by US composer and sound engineer Steve Peters, born 1959, this compilation gathers members of the Seattle independent music scene ca. 1982, with a special focus on vocal experiments. While he was studying art in Olympia, WA, between 1979 and 1985, Peters contributed reviews and interviews to OP Magazine, and was a radio producer on Olympia’s KAOS-FM. During the 1990s, Peters worked as producer for all ¿What Next? releases – as well as helping materialize the monumental Soundviews: Sources compilation cassette, 1990, posted earlier on the blog – and co-founded Non Sequitur, an experimental music label based in Santa Fé, New Mexico. He contributed an article to Robin James’ Cassette Mythos anthology in 1992, reporting on the Snapshot Radio broadcasts and cassette series he led with Rich Jensen, in which he asked volunteers to send their homemade cassette recordings, interviews, family and archive recordings.

♫ Regional Zeal appeared on ambient music label Palace of Light, led by Kerry Leimer in Seattle, WA, active between 1979 and 1983. Contributors include musicians from Washington State like vocalist Heidi Drucker, keyboard player Harlan Mark Vale or Steve Fisk (of  Pell Mell and Pigeonhead). While some of the musicians included became professional artists later in the 1980s and in the 1990s, in 1982 they were still experimenting with their instrument and recording studio facilities, which gives this LP a wonderful exploratory atmosphere. The brief was apparently to contribute tracks based on words and vocals and the results range from sound poetry with added sound effects to multi-tracked vocal tapestries. For instance, singer and bassist Cheri Knight contributes two dense, multi-tracked vocal exercises in which she transforms the simple enunciating of monosyllabic words into a one-woman chorale, a kind of self-help mantra, so to speak, all thanks to re-recording. The duo of Steve Fisk and Steve Peters, Customer Service use a lock groove at end of side 1 to propel their obsessive sound poem into orbit. Steve Fisk reads a poem accompanying himself with a toy music box, OP Magazine editor John Foster added electronic sounds to his humming performance, while others bathed their vocal delivery in a background of sound effects.

01 Alex StahlTimbre Management (3:26)
02 Steve PetersLotta Lights T’night (6:28)
03 Steve FiskGenerosity and Compassion (2:55)
04 Harlan Mark ValeGood God Almighty (2:07)
05 Heidi DruckerGetting Things Done (3:10)
06 Customer ServiceDog Eyes (3:20)
07 Cheri Knight Primary Colors (4:23)
08 Cheri KnightHear/Say (3:58)
09 Steve FiskDonna Summer on the Radio (2:16)
10 John FosterAcademic Exercise (2:18)
11 Christopher David KunkelHeydiddlediddle (3:40)
12 Robin JamesThe View of the Moon . . .  (1:40)

Total time 39:41
LP released by Palace of Light, Seattle, WA, 1982


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16 Responses to “Various – Regional Zeal”

  1. 1 lizard johnny jewel April 9, 2012 at 12:50 pm

    mmmm, this looks like a tasty one. :)

  2. 2 continuo April 9, 2012 at 3:27 pm

    The music here has the potential to take you by surprise. Hope you’ll enjoy.

  3. 3 O-Gerg the Wise Chip April 9, 2012 at 7:44 pm

    Surprises are good! Thanks.

  4. 4 continuo April 9, 2012 at 7:56 pm

    Definitely. Thanks for your comment.

  5. 5 aboombong April 10, 2012 at 5:15 am

    Steve is not only a man of exceptional talent and taste. He’s a super nice guy. You can keep up with his activities here

  6. 6 continuo April 10, 2012 at 6:43 am

    Well, what he did with Non Sequitur and The Aerial compilations was certainly exceptional.

  7. 7 Nonseq April 11, 2012 at 2:23 am

    Sweet of you to drag this old skeleton out of the closet. Almost all of the artists on that LP went on to do interesting things, and some still are. One small correction to your note above – Soundviews: Sources was produced by Jeffrey Bartone. It was the first release (cassette only) on What Next? label, but it was Jeffrey’s vision and hard work that made it happen. I just guided it through the publication process.

  8. 8 continuo April 11, 2012 at 7:56 am

    Hi, Steve. The “skeleton” sounds fresh to these ears! It seems amazing you were only 23 years old when you curated this compilation and encouraged other artists to venture into sound poetry, probably for the first and last time for most of them.
    Sorry, I didn’t check my copy of Soundviews: Sources and credited it unproperly. Besides, I’m not familiar with the name of Jeffrey Bartone.
    Thanks for your nice comment.

  9. 9 Harlan Mark Vale April 11, 2012 at 5:08 pm

    This is great Steve. Is there a Mac downloadable version of this file that I may access? iLivid is Windows. Regional Vinyl breathes digital life once more. Thank you.

  10. 10 continuo April 11, 2012 at 6:05 pm

    These are regular mp3s, Mark, playable with your Mac’s iTunes player.
    You just have to unzip the compressed rar. file with StuffIt Expander or similar.

  11. 11 Harlan Mark Vale April 11, 2012 at 7:41 pm

    ooop found one that works

  12. 12 Nonseq April 12, 2012 at 1:12 am

    I’m not having any luck either. Endless pop-ups that end up downloading a text file. ??????

  13. 13 continuo April 12, 2012 at 7:26 am

    There’s nothing to download on the MirrorCreator page, but if you look at the bottom of the page, you’ll find 8 different links to storage services hosting the mp3 files. Choose one, say “Deposit Files”, and a link to the Deposit server will appear (“Please click here to go to your download page”).Once on the Deposit page, click on Free Download. Good luck and welcome in the not so pretty world of illegal mp3 files!

  14. 14 Joaquín Mendoza Sebastián April 13, 2012 at 7:52 pm

    another marvelous post my friend! =) and it’s great that Steve showed up, if you are reading this Steve, great great record!

  15. 15 continuo April 13, 2012 at 8:03 pm

    Thanks for your comment, Joaquín.

  16. 16 Nonseq April 14, 2012 at 2:55 pm

    Finally figured it out. Us old folks are easily confused by too many pop ups and spammy “DOWNLOAD NOW!” buttons. Also, you’ll be hearing from our lawyers soon. (just kidding!) Thanks for nice comments, all.

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