Geoff Groberg

Nebo Loop

Skipped work on a rainy morning.
Strapped a video camera to the front of my truck.
Drove the Nebo Loop.

Created in 2004, I think.


Koosharem is a place in Utah. It’s out-of-the-way. I don’t even know if it qualifies as a town. In fact, I’m willing to entertain the idea that it’s not a real place, but just a distant memory or a dream.


On September 6, 2008 we loaded Trent’s SUV with banjos, mandolins, and other instruments and drove to Koosharem for a wedding gig. It was outdoors, in the middle of nowhere– the kind of gig that reminds me why I love bluegrass. There were 5 of us crammed in the SUV and we listened to music and talked as we traveled thru small towns.

Our band name was Miles To Go, a fitting name. Traveling is one of the blessings of bluegrass. Here are some more:

  1. Tons of super good barbecue.
  2. No one cares if you actually know how to play.
  3. You get fantastic ideas for how to put on a beautiful, memorable wedding.

We followed hand-made signs. Some of them made us laugh. They led us down dirt roads and eventually to the wedding site: an open field in the middle of ranch-country. Food was prepared while we set up our sound equipment. There were strings of paper lanterns, wood crates, and coke bottle vases filled with wild flowers. Glass jars with tealight candles hung from an old tree. And on the ground in front of us there was a makeshift wooden dance floor.

It seemed like the perfect place at the perfect time. The mountains were in silhouette as the setting sun turned everything to gold. We breathed the early autumn air as the sun disappeared completely and the sky filled with stars.

MegWed_573We played traditional tunes while people visited and danced. I remember Cassie and the bride sang Blackbird. I remember realizing too late that the arrangement I knew wasn’t standard and would probably throw them off. I also remember that we had to play for longer than normal, which meant we got to try out a bunch of songs that weren’t quite ready. Tamilisa improvised on mandolin while I tried out my newly discovered classical-steel-string-banjo-guitar and sang, “One morning, one morning, one morning in May.”

We ate dinner on a picnic table in darkness, away from the lights. That’s the best way to eat barbecue, when you can’t see what’s on your plate. You just dish spoonfuls of bean/corn/spare rib surprise into your mouth: wave upon wave of sweetened tomato sauce deliciousness.

Thinking about Koosharem makes me hungry and nostalgic. I’ll probably never have a reason to return. But I do have a souvenir to help me remember. It’s a drink holder that says “Eat, Drink, and be Married! Rickenbach Ranch, Koosharem, Utah, USA.”

Pictured above, Miles To Go (in 2008) was Geoff Groberg, Tamilisa Wood (now Miner), Cassie Singley (now Gadd), Trent McCausland, Hillary Barlow (now Harris). All the beautiful photos in this post were taken by ?, the wedding photographer.

What’s your favorite instrument? A truck.

A very short video snippet featuring Isaac and Mark Geslison.

The road to Lund, Nevada

In October 2012 we had a bluegrass gig in Lund, Nevada. What? You’ve never heard of Lund?! It’s a tiny town in the middle of a desert. The drive there can be spectacular.

A few fellow travelers on this fun road trip…

Arizona Road Trip

Unbelievable scenery on our way to a family reunion in Arizona…

Final Limit

Final Limit is an audio effects processing plugin. It’s a “limiter” designed to be the final element in your signal chain. It brings the overall volume up, without distorting. (Unless you want a bit of distortion, which it also provides.) I created the plugin using SonicBirth.

How it works

The main slider increases the gain of the input signal which is then processed with a compression algorithm I designed. Any leftover peaks are attenuated using a shaper function curve. There are also options for EQ, attack and release characteristics, and maximum output level.

The user interface is inspired by an old Ensoniq synth I used to own. I avoided naming the limiter’s attack and release characteristics with technical numbers and labels (like milliseconds). Instead the controls are labelled with fun/zany titles like “Dog Slow” and “Burnt Toast.” They sound funny, but the idea is that they actually describe the sound better than a label like “80ms.” The UI was also designed with the idea of minimizing visual feedback. All too often audio engineers make adjustments based on what they see (like the curve of an EQ) instead of what they actually hear.

You can download it here. It runs on OS X as an AudioUnits plugin, but unfortunately it is 32 bit only because sonic birth doesn’t allow exporting 64 bit plugins. It won’t run in hosts that are 64 bit applications.

Chickens and Ducks

Here is a movie about kids making a movie. These are my kids: Eira, Lucy, and Amanda feeding and playing with the neighbor’s chickens and ducks. Our dog, Natasha, wishes she could join in, but she is a well known chicken killer.

The Story of Kish

I composed the music for this short film. It’s part of the Olive Us videos my cousins have been producing.

Redeemer of Israel and Irish Whistles

Mark and I are finishing another Hymns CD. Here’s the opening track, featuring a little too much Irish Whistle playing. Or, can you really ever have enough?

I actually used 2 Irish Whistles on this recording. One of them I purchased recently, and it was actually made in Ireland. The other one I made several years ago out of an aluminum shower curtain rod.

a page from the original 1835 edition of the LDS hymnbook

a page from the original 1835 edition of the LDS hymnbook

A little trivia

Did you know Redeemer of Israel was among the original hymns that Emma Smith selected for the 1835 edition of the LDS hymn book?

I have an interesting memory from my mission about this hymn. I went to England and expected to be with quiet, reserved Brits. Instead, I found myself in the heart of London with a bunch of Africans. My first Sunday in sacrament I was on the stand, because they wanted to introduce me. So I was facing the congregation. And when they started singing– whoah! I felt like the guy from those Memorex ads with hair blowing back as he listens to super loud music. (Is it live or is it Memorex?) Africans sing. They don’t hold back.

More trivia: I Saw a Mighty Angel Fly is the other tune you’ll hear in this medley. I also became familiar with it on my mission. Every year around Christmas time I would hear O Little Town of Bethlehem sung to this melody– totally different than what we’re used to in America, but really beautiful. Somehow it became a restoration hymn. But from the beginning it was not so.

I’ll update with more soon and you can hear the whole CD. (It’s updated. Go check it out!)

Fairy Houses

Over the holidays we made Fairy houses. They’re made out of old flower pots and other odds and ends (the same way that real fairies build their houses). The girls and I made them and kept it a secret from Jennifer until her birthday. Made me feel very crafty. Eira is hoping that real fairies will come and live in the houses.