lllyre is Charlie Shifflett's electronic and ambient music project.
lllyre is an ambient & electronic music project launched in 2018 by Charlie Shifflett. Charlie has released a five-song EP, Dog Days, and is currently at work on tracks that will be featured in a family documentary he is producing. One of these tracks, “We Were Nervous, You & I” , was released as a single in April 2019.
“We Were Nervous, You & I” (Single, 2019)
Dog Days (EP, 2018)
Dog Days Q&A (2018)
so your new ep, dog days... tell me about it.
well, it's my first attempt at composing electronic and ambient music. i've dabbled in music ever since high school, when i was in a rock band. about two years ago, i began experimenting with hardware and software synths, as well as DAWs, and eventually i found myself composing complete songs.
mercifully, there are no vocals.
haha - that's right. folks can listen away without fear of hearing my falsetto. there are no traditional vocals, but there are songs with some whistling, humming and chirping birds I recorded on a hike in rural northern virginia.
can you tell me a little about the track "the good people of zhongguancun"?
song titles, especially for tracks with no vocals, are always a little tricky. that track is sort of an ode to my first place of residence in beijing, after i moved to china in 2002. i lived in a neighborhood known as zhongguancun. it's the city's technology hub. back when i was there (am i sounding old?), i regularly interacted with university students, entrepreneurs, construction workers, farmers -- all in one place. i wrote the song almost entirely on my iPhone, as sort of a nod to the neighborhood's tech focus. in the composition, which evolves instrumentally from section to section, i tried to reflect the diversity of people i met while living there. china has a really special place in my heart and memories, and that's probably one of my favorite tracks on the ep.
two of songs -- "dog days" and "beneath these florida pines" -- feel quite different than the other tracks on the EP.
definitely. i wanted to have a couple of songs that were softer and a bit moodier. at the same time, i wanted the songs to reflect a change, from beginning to end. i feel that both compositions accomplish this. "beneath these florida pines" introduces a whistle mid-way through that becomes the catalyst for a mood change. and "dog days" evolves from a boggy melancholy tune thanks to some choral-like synths that pull the listener onto more hopeful ground by the song's end.
so where do you go from here?
well, i'll be embarking on a world tour, opening for -- just kidding... i'm staying right here, though i might go downstairs and brew a cup of coffee shortly. i plan to keep writing and composing. i have some lyrics that i'd like to pair with music, so in a few months -- who knows? -- folks might get to hear my falsetto after all.
those who are still listening, that is.
true, true. there may not be very many who make it through a first listen of dog days. but hopefully my dog will still put up with my late-night songwriting, if no one else will. i did give him prime placement on the ep cover art, so hopefully that buys me a little time with him to continue growing and improving as a songwriter and composer.