From The Desk of Dr. Thallium

Update August 2023 

So I’ve been having some rough times. I wanted to release an album last year but I’ve been having a variety of issues, namely struggling to find a day gig to pay the bills and keep food in me. But there’s another thing that I wanted to say that I think may be laying deeper than I care to admit. I think I have a problem with wanting to think of ways to monetize things.


I have been struggling to make music that I care about because I’ve been obsessing with how to make money with it so I can do that instead of actually enjoying my work. I have ideas all over the place. I am told by conventional sources that I should focus on a single niche, to the exclusion of all else, and market off of there. I get ideas to write songs, but also instrumentals, but also stuff that doesn’t fit in a “brand”. I get so scared that I will put time into something that will not fit within my “Brand” that it will drive people away from me. So in that fear, I find myself trying to think of marketable things to write, and end up writing nothing at all.


I’m not getting any younger, and I’ve been banging my head on the “make music a career” thing for ages. I’ve had plenty of setbacks, but I am not willing to give up, but it’s been real tempting to me. It’s been like I lost my shot and I didn’t have a thing to add. If you’ve been following me and my work, I cannot thank you enough.


I want to release things. I want to share music with all of you, it’s the best part of the creative field. I just need to get out of this “Grindset” mentality that’s choked out my creativity and just write. I hope to have things going again soon. Things have stabilized in my life, and I am getting to enjoy things without fear of being able to make bills. Thank you all and I hope to make something you can enjoy as well.

Some Changes Going On 

News from the very top: Dr. Thallium is pushing to make music for more of a living!

So for those who may have follow my Twitter account, things aren't going so hot. I have decided that for the sake of my happiness, I am doubling down to get my music going and out into the world.

Currently, I am working on a single that is close to mixing stage. After that, it's a matter of getting a master and scheduling a release. I will announce it when it is ready, so don't worry!

Going forward, there will be need to get income flowing to better aid my day job to make bills and to afford to take care of myself. To accomplish this I am going to try to open up for commissions, but I will need to assess my needs and what I can get done. To better help potential clients, I am going to make some small clips of different styles of music to listen to and see where my strengths are. SoundCloud will probably be the best place to keep this Digital Demo Reel.

If you have the means to take care of your own needs first, and have something to spare, please consider donating to the Laboratory!

What your donations help me do:

  • Make ends meet so I am not as scared about whether I am making enough at my current jobs that week (I currently work three part-time jobs)
  • Help pay for outside assistance: Mastering, Artwork, etc.
  • Registration of my work to multiple streaming platforms

When I can get through these points safely, I will consider myself on the right track. No man is an island, and I have already had to rely on others to help me make this happen, so anything you can do to help is invaluable. Thank you.

- Dr. Thallium

Better Late Than Never! 

After some issues involving sickness, financial worries and the stress of working three jobs while trying to write an album, it is understandable to be significantly behind schedule.  That being said, I had to confront some of my thinking to this point. Since before the start of the year, I have been under the assumption that I would be having to become a proficient keyboardist (pianist) while also trying to write the album itself. This has proved to be faulty thinking on my behalf. It may have set my early attempts up for failure.   

I was under the mistaken belief that because instruments like saxophone were, at best, unpopular outside of the jazz world, and downright cheesy and cliche at worst. I went forward thinking that I would have to change my entire self, skills and past accomplishments to find success. What resulted was not only feeling like my piano work was suffering, but my ability to write appropriate music was hampered by my lack of skill at an instrument that has only existed in the practice room.  

What I have come to understand is that I should embrace my strengths again. I have skills that I can tap into and can only be  enhanced through more persistent practice. Much of my work is arranged by computer, so live piano performance shouldn’t be my main concern. The challenge of being a composer is to know what can be done and writing accordingly for instruments you may never even play. This is what separates me from other artists: I have  the academic background and foundation and can make use of it where others have to try and learn outside of the resources I had.   

So I happily pick up my saxophones, break in a new set of reeds, and ensure that I can better target places where I need the most practice and can improve, and leave the instruments that I am not as proficient upon to either friends that are, or technology. My duty is to make what I feel is right and sing with a voice that I can make my own, even if it does not come from my throat.

The Year Of The Album - December, 2021 

December, 2021 

With the upcoming year of music making, I decided that I would take some time to enjoy the remaining amount of my month. I currently work about three jobs, including food service, music retail, and teaching. It shouldn’t feel like I am doing so much, but during this month, it’s pretty wicked. I decided to focus on doing enjoyable things, since my holidays are pretty limited. I did get to enjoy some things that I would be happy to share 

Meeting up with gaming friends. I enjoy playing tabletop games, and I’ve had experience in playing them for many years. Originally, I started with Warhammer 40,000 in college. I didn’t have a lot of friends on campus, seeing as I was the one of two people from my state on campus, but the hobby got me out of my dorm room on weekends to hang out with people I felt comfortable with. Admittedly, I wasn’t very good, but it was the assembling and painting that made me happy the most. I would move on from early paint jobs to improve greatly. Today, I actually play a number of games when I can, and have some very good friends to share them with, even if they are also working professionals with little time of their own. 

I do think it’s important to have hobbies outside of music. The last thing that you want to have is serious burn-out and then you feel worse because it’s all that you are doing. Being able to distract yourself and get out of yourself for a time is something to be encouraged. Read a book. Paint Miniatures. Play some video games. Go to a Board Game Night with friends. You might even find some inspiration for something in what you do for no other reason than to please yourself.  

Plus, I should add, visual arts of any kind are a good partner with music. Music exists in a state limited by sound and time. When it’s done, it’s gone and nothing else to be done than put the needle back at the beginning of the record, or do another count off. With something like visual arts, you can set it down, admire it, hate it, love it again, and then put it somewhere to enjoy later.  

Composition is a rather lonely sort of thing, with lots of time being spent working however you produce, with a lot of pressure to perform and to have brilliant ideas. Maybe pick up some paints, or a sketchbook, or a copy of Space Hulk and go meet up with someone to play?

Now on Bandcamp! (and Update) 

You called for it, and it is delivered!

For those of you that have a BandCamp account, you can visit and follow on there for releases!

Also, for your convenience, the single "Into The Breach" is available on the main site!

Hard at work with another track! Stop by the Twitch channel to catch previously recorded VODs of the creation and follow along for upcoming work!

It SHOULD be able to be safely streamed on Twitch without problem. If you DO have problems, TELL ME! I want you to show my work to your viewers!

Opening for Feedback! 

Hello Interns!

So some of you have been asking for me to open up some of my new music for feedback. I say this a wonderful idea! So I've brought my SoundCloud account up to speed and brought out a nice rough mix of a piece recently finished composing from this week of live streams!


Feel free to take a listen! If you have an account with SoundCloud, please feel free to comment! Something need to be tweaked? Something not sound right? Let me know here or there!

The Plan Going Foward 

Hello Interns! 

I wanted to catch you all up with how things are going in the laboratory. Yes, things have been rough on all of us, and I am happy that we are all finding our ways of coping! Things have been quiet here for a bit, so here's the shakeup that is going on! 

There are plans in the works for releasing more content in the coming times, primarily of which is the goal of releasing a new, polished, ready to go tune per month! Thankfully I am going to take advantage of what's left of October to get a head start and try to get ahead of the game. The way things are leaning, for now, I haven't been very pleased with my singing, and lyrical content. So that's going on a back burner. I am taking this opportunity to get back in touch with more instrumental works, focusing on my strength as a clarinet and saxophone player.  

YES! You heard correct! While some are familiar with my more mercenary work as a saxophonist for individuals and bands, I have a degree in music with a focus on woodwinds! My saxophone is second only to my Clarinet in terms of how long I've been practicing them. I think it's time to contribute to the musical community some of what I have to say in the instrumental space! 

In-between these monthly releases, I am gearing up to start work as an Online Busker! I have visited and befriended some very talented people on services such as Twitch. So I thought this would be a good way to get more experience with audiences (in the absence of so many venues due to the current health concerns around the globe). The plan of it is simple: For starters, it's just going to be me performing as if I was on the street, only instead of feeling awkward standing and listening, you can simply keep me running in another tab and go about your work! If you want to hang out with me, I would be more than happy to talk with you, but as this is more of an audio-focused thing (on a video platform, I know), there will be visuals to at least mark what is going on at the time for those browsing. We'll see how this works out!  

For those who listen on SoundCloud, I have an account there but have not given enough attention to it in recent years. THAT WILL CHANGE! Atop of the normal releases on Apple Music, Spotify, et cetera, I am looking to release these on SoundCloud to bring things to your ease of access!  

Thank you all for your continued support, and I hope to bring more great music to you all! 


Dr. Thallium

The Blessing And Curse of Having Multiple Interests 

There are folks you run into in life, and you marvel at them. You see how they work and how singularly driven they are in one particular field. They are amazing! You know them for that one thing, and one thing only.  

You struggle to believe how anyone could be so devoted entirely to their field, they are an inspiration! On the other hand, you find it hard to concentrate on any given thing. You work on music, but you hit a wall. You begin to write, only to have your brain scream at you that you should be doing something more productive with your music. You try drawing and the inner critic gets even worse. 

“You need to focus! You don’t have time for something like this!” 

It is hard not to get down on yourself, to feel like you are wasting your time. You do these things anyway, because you would rather do something than nothing at all, which feels like the worst sin of all. 

In time, you may befriend one of these single-minded, purely focused individuals. You tell them how amazing they are and how you wish you were more like them. It’s then that they turn to you and say. 

“That’s the thing. If I can’t do this one thing, I don’t do anything. I don’t feel like I could do anything else. I actually envy how you can go from one project to another and seem absolutely unphased by changing entire mediums! You can do a lot of things. I can only do one thing, and when I can’t do that, I do nothing at all.”

“Day Gigs” and You  


With how the world has been coping in the aftermath of the COVID-19, some of you will have been able to do what you have always wanted to do by spending all this time creating. Let me be the first to say, I am ecstatic for you! If you’re like me, creativity has been slow going. You get something done one day, the next you are finding yourself distracted by a myriad of things, including the search for your next “Day Gig”. 

The job market has been pretty bad for a lot of folks, especially friends of mine who make their livings as performers. I, and many others, have had to find methods to keep solvent and make plans for future endeavors. 

That’s why I want to dedicate this post to the situation most of us in the music fields are in: Day Gigs. 

For the past nine years, I was working for a company that had absolutely nothing to do with music. I went there, logged in my time, and left. I was taking lessons to try and remain productive, but when there are variable daily hours of 8-10 hours a day, That will put a drain on a person. My family told me there was a marked difference in my overall attitude and demeanor when I finally left the place. Much of this time unemployed, I have been recuperating, studying, and trying to find something that would help me and better fund my music. For me, that answer, for now, is IT. 

Now I want to tell you, it doesn’t matter whether you are in food-service, retail, technology, whatever job you may find yourself in. As long as you are finding ways to keep the power on, and put food on your table, you are doing your best. Too often I and other people believed that if we weren’t doing anything in music, we weren’t who we thought we were. I and so many others were wrong in this thought. I have known skilled DJs that worked for Amazon, Blues and Jazz players that work in Pharmacy. You take work where you can get it because its part of the fine print we didn’t read of our craft when we signed up. 

In my case, I am lucky enough to land back in with a music store in my area, after so many of them had gone under after the housing market crash of 2008. I am in a position where even if I can’t find full-time work, I am now teaching lessons to young students and it has revitalized me. It helps me get back into the mindset of practice and being active again. So now, even as I look back to find regular work, I know I have something that ties me back to the music community. 

That’s what you should remember when it comes to finding Day Gigs. Yes, it will very likely not have anything to do with your craft. Don’t let that get you down! Carve out that time where you can practice, find that connection to your local music community, and most importantly… 

Keep Practicing.

Introductions Are Always Awkward 


If you are reading this, then congratulations! You have made it past the horrible death traps and dead ends to make it to this terminal! Good for you! 

While you are here, please take a look around, I’m sure you will enjoy yourself! Enjoyment is mandatory and any infractions are dealt with severely! 

Yes, things seem a bit empty, and I must admit, there are plenty of things going on to keep anyone occupied, and I can’t say that things outside of this laboratory are any less distracting than what goes on within. Still, progress must press on!  

I’m starting with this blog because, well, I enjoy writing words as much as I enjoy writing and performing music! I’m sure there are still a few people out there that will read this, so might as well scratch that writing itch and keep others informed of developments as they come. Maybe I could go into some of the processes, maybe even things I’ve learned.  

I will be honest, I am not exactly the youngest in this field, and maybe those that have waited longer to begin might have something to gain from where I have fallen short?  

Either way, I am glad that you are here with me, and I hope you will decide to join me. It sure beats having to go back the way you came and I doubt those alligators are any less hungry this time around.