Tag Archives: music

🙄

so, i decided to reposition major furniture in my office, to achieve the following results:

  1. i have to figure out how my studio is set up. i originally set it up to use with the piano/synthesizer setup, and i seem to recall doing at least one piece of music in that configuration… and then i set it up some other way, which i don’t remember, and now everything is mixed up and i can’t figure it out, because all of the connections are on the back of the devices, and in order to access the back of the amplifier, i have to move the printer, and stand on a stool, while leaning over the printer, and accessing the back upside down… which isn’t ideal. what i need is the back of everything to be as easily accessible as the front, which means moving stuff around.
  2. in the process of trying to figure out how the studio stuff was hooked up, i thought i had completely disconnected every audio connection from my computer to the amplifier… and yet, i seem to be able to play music from my computer, and hear the sound through the speakers… which would seem to indicate that there is a new/different/as-yet-undiscovered audio connection that i have overlooked somehow… (possibly the HDMI connection from the monitor, but how does it get to the amplifier??? 😕) but, unfortunately, the cables from the computer to the amplifier are accessed from the back, AND under my desk… which is REALLY not ideal… i’ve got to figure that out.

this may involve a trip to ikea and possibly a new desk, as the one that i have is a repurposed ikea table.

the reason i want to figure out how my studio works (again), is because i have recently discovered jamulus, which appears to be an audio interface that is designed to be used over internet. i realise that there’s some pretty hard physical constants that make audio connections… let’s say difficult… over long distances, but, apparently, distances less than 50 miles or so the latency is tolerable, and they get around the rest of it, sketchily, by having everyone listen to the server, and not the actual sound coming out of your instrument, and… well, i haven’t been able to busk the past couple of weeks (HVAC stuff), and i’ve been going nuts, because there are new songs that we’ve been talking about, but we can’t get together and rehearse because i have to be at home to let the workers in… and now i’ve got jamulus installed, and (apparently) working… all i have to do is hook up a microphone, which i do, but… no sound… and thus began the task of figuring out how the studio is set up.

there’s another thing i tried to get set up, but couldn’t, because of a lack of installation instructions. JamStud.io actually advertises “jam online without latency”, despite the fact that, as far as i know, scientists are still stymied by the speed of light 😉 which makes it impossible to have an audio connection without more and more latency as the distance increases… but, hey… if i could get it installed, i might be using that, instead.

here we go again… 🙄

i’ve got a zoom class this evening, a telehealth appointment tomorrow, and a moisture festival rehearsal on saturday…

… and my tablet decided to stop charging this morning. 🤬

i got in touch with the technician that replaced the charging port (odd that this seems to happen on an almost yearly basis… odd indeed… 😒), and informed him that it had quit charging again, and he said i should bring it in. so i left an hour earlier than normal, and headed up the east side of the lake to redmond, where the technician confirmed that it was, indeed, a faulty charging port, said that they would fix it on warranty, and ordered the new part. 👍

problem is, i’m fairly sure he DIDN’T also order a new screen at the same time… and this particular model of ipad is NOTORIOUS for screen breakage when you have to open it up FOR ANYTHING… kinda like they had to do last year (and the year before) when they replaced the charging port. it turned into a two week job, during which time the screen of my tablet was BROKEN, which precluded me from using it for ANYTHING… 😒

and that can’t happen this time, because i have zoom classes, telehealth appointments, and moisture festival rehearsals AND PERFORMANCES in the next three weeks. i can get through the rehearsals and performances with my old-school hard-copy music, and the zoom classes and telehealth appointments THEORETICALLY can take place on my phone, but it will be at least three levels of hassle that i would rather avoid, if i had the choice. 😒

VEWPRF/year-end stuff

i’m slowly rebuilding my music collection. today i added two tom zé albums, from the early 2000s, which are “no longer available” — meaning “the only place to find them is on discogs. one is an album i had pre-cloud-drive-disaster, called “Estudando o Pagode (Na Opereta Segregamulher e Amor)“. the other is one that “just happened” to be available from the same vendor, from two years earlier, in 2003, and it’s called “Imprensa Cantada“. both of them appear in several tom zé anthologies, but the original CDs have artwork that is NOT included in the anthologies, and, especially in the case of tom zé, the graphic artwork is almost as important as the musical artwork in the overall scheme of things. i should be getting another Gogol Bordello CD pretty soon, also

we’re giving away the last piece of ikea furniture that we own, that is NOT shelves, tomorrow… which should be interesting, as we currently have three days worth of snow on the ground, and only a few tire tracks of people driving past our house. it’s the king-size storage bed frame, which means that now we’ve got the adjustable bed frame on the 4-inch legs that it came with (rather than on the 2-inch legs, on top of the storage bed), no storage under the bed (currently), and no headboard (currently). the plan is to get some other form of storage, and a headboard… and, possibly a dresser and nightstand to replace the ones i inherited from my grandparents in 1980-something.

moe is getting “stem cell treatment” on her knees on thursday [UPDATE: WEDNESDAY!!] (hopefully the roads will have cleared enough by then that i can drive out of the neighbourhood). this is to (hopefully) “cure” her bum knees, which currently have no meniscus. if everything goes according to plan, this is going to create “new” padding between the bones in her knee. naturally, “insurance” won’t pay for it, and the only other option — total knee replacement — isn’t happening at the moment because the orthopedist that moe has been seeing is fat-phobic, and won’t operate until she’s lighter than she’s ever been in her adult life. 😒… so the (veterinary) clinic is paying for the whole procedure(!!). alledgedly, it’s going to be a couple of days of being “pretty out of it”, followed by a couple weeks of “light duty”, and then it will develop into an “up to 80% improvement”, which is A LOT better than where she’s been for the past few years.

i’ve managed to stay a lot more insulated from the standard xmas “celebration”, this year, but it’s primarily because of the pandemic, which doesn’t look like it’s going to be ending any time in the forseeable future, barring a miracle of some sort… and, as we all know, miracles that involve anti-vax mask-holes, and the right-wing, republican’t, fascist, white-supremacist IDIOTS that currently make up slightly less than HALF of the population of this gawd-forsaken wasteland, are, for all practical purposes, totally unheard-of… but, on the plus side, almost complete isolation for the second year in a row, has made it so that i have only had to listen to one, partial rendition of “feliz navidad” this year, so i can’t say that’s all bad.

and i got a theremin for xmas! 😎

yawn, again…

back to nothing happening again…

my harvest is curing, but the trimmings aren’t drying as fast as i would like them to. i’m pretty sure that if i took the screen off of my office window (which i am not currently using anyway), i could speed up the drying process. maybe i’ll do that today.

i went to a concert with moe and her friend lora, a couple days ago. i was chosen at the last minute to substitute for lora’s husband, who said that a concert might jeopardise his recent sobriety (and he was an AWFUL drunk, so i totally agree), and, also, because, that way, i could drive and lora and moe could talk. 😉 it was the first time i have done ANYTHING that “public” in almost two years, and it felt really weird. it felt weird going to the tacoma-dome, and being in the (relatively light) crowd of people getting into the venue… i wore a N95 mask AND my cloth mask, and kept my hands in my pockets as much as possible. it felt weird sitting in the row of seats with a totally strange (masked) woman so close that she was touching my arm, for the two and a half hours of the concert. a majority of the people were wearing masks, but there was also food and drink available, and a significant number of people thought it was “okay” to wear their masks incorrectly (under their nose), which made me feel like they could have easily taken it off and not felt guilty about it. it felt weird, and creepy, and, when i got home, i felt like i had been swimming in other peoples’ cooties. i took a long, hot shower after the show.

the concert was jackson browne and james taylor, with both of whom i am, more or less, unfamiliar. with jackson browne, there were a few songs that, once he started singing, i went “yeah, i know that song” (although there was one that moe said “if you were alive in the ’70s, you know this song”, but i didn’t), and even a couple that i knew most of the lyrics to, but, honestly, if it weren’t for the fact that i was hearing them at a show that featured jackson browne and james taylor, i wouldn’t have been able to tell you that it was a jackson browne song… hell, i was under the impression, prior to the concert, that jackson was a black man, because that’s the way i always imagined him. that’s how ignorant i was. 😕 james taylor was only a little better, in that i knew that he was white, and i knew a few james taylor songs — all of which they played, of course 😒 — but with both of them, i never had time to listen to their songs because they were INTENSELY popular, so much a part of popular culture, and, particularly, because, james taylor was married to carly simon, and was addicted to heroin…

i never had a thing for carly simon, but i figured that if he were that famous on his own, and he was married to carly simon, then i’m guessing there was something more than “love” involved in the process. 😒

besides which, at the time, i was a lot more interested in the music of morton subotnik, arnold schönberg, and karlheinz stockhausen, who were — and are — A LOT more interesting… 😉

but the musicianship was outstanding — james taylor was backed up by steve gadd on drums, and bruce fowler on horns, both of whom played with frank zappa — the music was good, the lyrics were as “woke” as i remembered them to be in the ’70s, and more “woke” and more “blunt” for the newer songs, james taylor is no longer married to carly simon, or addicted to heroin…

but i would still have much preferred to see a concert of music by morton subotnik, arnold schönberg, or karlheinz stockhausen. 😉

they started up my unicycle class again. it meets for the first time on sunday, which is also halloween. i have to figure out a costume in which i can also ride a unicycle… also, now i have a much higher possibility of learning how to turn left before the end of the year.

i ordered two “performance masks” on the 5th of october, and they still haven’t been shipped out… but it’s just as well, because it has been raining a lot, particularly over the past few days. the pond has water in it, again, but it’s still drastically low.

hope? — dashed?

sorting through the mess of recovered data is heartbreaking.

i’m finding all sorts of stuff that, once i actually see (or hear) a bit of it, i know exactly what it is, and i’m starting to get things organised enough that, some of the time, i even have a place to put it, once i’ve discovered what it is…

but, then… everything doesn’t come crashing down, but…

i haveHAD a CDR album called “We Bore 2“, which was one of my favourites. it was produced in 2003 by Toast & Jam Records, which has, since, gone out of business, and their web site is now a japanese porn site… it was a “various artists” compilation of electronic, experimental, glitch music, and it was AWESOME!

i found a .RAR archive with the .mp3s for “We Bore 2”, and i was, like, “COOL!”… i expanded the archive, and put it in the place it had been taken from in my collection, and went on to the next archive.

today, for the first time, i actually LISTENED to “We Bore 2″…

yeah, all the tracks are there, but track 1 is NOT what was there the last time i listened to “We Bore 2″… and track 2 is also the same way, to a lesser extent… and track 3 is pretty messed up… and track four is mostly there, except for a patch in the middle which is totally missing… and track 5… and track 7… and track 8… and track 9… 😭

pretty much all of the tracks have something wrong with them…

and i can’t get another copy of the CD, because i originally downloaded it as a .rar file…

and, i’m pretty sure (given the huge quantity of .rar and .zip files that got recovered) that more than a few of them are going to have exactly the same problem. 😭

ETA: all is not lost… well, for “We Bore 2” anyway… it turns out i actually have the original CDR for this album… but i’m fairly sure that is NOT going to be the case with a majority of the .rar and .zip archives i have…

sumbunal

i found sumbunal of my music collection, on a huge stack of CDs and DVDs (possibly two, i haven’t checked thoroughly, yet) which i had stashed in the garage, in a cabinet in front of which i have stacked 4 huge cartons of incense… so, naturally, it was the absolute LAST place i thought to look. this appears to be my music backups from 2002, or thereabouts, until 2016 or 17 — when i “moved everything to the cloud” — which means that the part of my collection that isn’t backed up, is, very likely, music that i have on CD (which i can re-rip, if necessary) or music that was in a .zip or .rar archive… and, strangely enough, not many of the .mp3s that are on the recovery disk actually made it, but there’s probably 90% to 95% of the .zip and .rar archives that appear to have made it through… meaning that, when i opened the archive with ark, it opened and didn’t tell me that the archive was corrupt most of the time… 😕 i don’t completely understand how that happened, but i’ll take it.

and, to be honest, there are more than a few albums where i was able to download all but one track from the backup disk (for whatever reasons), so i’m really glad that i actually have as many CDs as i do, because that makes it a lot easier to go back and re-rip one track from an album.

it’s been more than a month since i played music through my stereo speakers. i spent ALL DAY today, listening to music and uploading gigabytes of music to the new NAS. 👍😉

and, TOMORROW, i’m going BUSKING!!! 👍😎👍

Evolution Control Committee

“What Would You Think If I Sang Autotune” by Evolution Control Committee.

“Whole Lotta Royalty Payments” by Evolution Control Committee.

i found this book in a “little free library” today… i’m having a lot of fun imagining what it COULD BE about… 😉

The Complete Book Of Meat
The Complete Book Of Meat

creativity…?

i recorded the tuba part for a collaborative effort to create the panto 2020 “Welcome Song”, but since we can’t actually meet to rehearse, we’re recording the parts, which, presumably, will be together enough that they will be able to be combined together, and then emailed to the people who have come to the pantos in the past.

i experienced the clarinet part, and the “click track”, which was kiki playing the song on the ukulele and singing, along with a metronome. without the click track (which, i’m assuming is the ultimate goal), the clarinet part and the tuba part ended up staying together… mostly… and the times when it seemed like we were going to lose the beat, miraculously, found the beat again in a lot less time than it would have taken if we had been in a live rehearsal.

but it’s really weird playing the tuba part without all of the other parts, only knowing that they will be put together at a later date.

Heirophany
Heirophany
there’s a possibility that thaddeus and i are going to resurrect “Heirophany”, which is me playing the harmonic flute and twiddling with electronic gadgets, and thaddeus playing guitar, and twiddling with electronic gadgets. we released a 12 minute long single — with a fantastic cover, which is a picture of a ‘cello on fire 😉👍 — a couple of years ago, and then didn’t do anything else, but, at this point, we can do it “socially distanced”, and i’ve even been thinking of designing a mask for the harmonic flute, anyway, that will make it so that i can play when it’s windy… only, now, it’s so that i can play while i’m masked… and it’s something where we can play for other people, and, potentially, make some money at it at the same time.

#drumpf still hasn’t conceded, and his lawsuits are getting tossed out as fast as he can file ’em, but, ultimately, i think he’s going to try to make an end run around losing the popular vote and the electoral vote by “declaring” the election invalid, refusing to accept the results, and going to the supreme court (which he has stacked with sycophants) to make the final decision. he has made statements within the past 24 hours that include “just get rid of the ballots”, and “there will be no transition”, and “biden can’t enter the white house without proving that his ballots are legal”, which don’t make it sound particularly like he’s intending to go anywhere. and, while i would like nothing better than to watch as he was dragged out by his heels, kicking and screaming like a three-year-old having a tantrum (which, i have no doubt, would happen, if it came to that), i seriously doubt that any president that comes after that would have any chance of pulling the country back together again any time within my lifetime, i don’t care who he is, or how fast he impliments universal health care and universal basic income.

420 update

i’m getting closer and closer to divesting myself of all of my web hosting clients. i’m hoping that my last day of hosting anybody except me, and people directly related to me (i.e. my wife and son) will be 190430. i’m still trying to get two domains off my server, and then there will be one, which i don’t know whether they are going to find a new server, or whether they are just going to let it die. either way, it’s SEP and i don’t have to worry about it…

although i am… 😒

we came back from the beach. it rained a lot. i planned on taking mushrooms, but it rained, so i didn’t. i did spent a lot of time sleeping… and other passtimes:

190408 drawing
190408 drawing

like drawing…

190408 picture
190408 picture

although the dog moved by the time i took the picture…

and, given that it’s the first time that i’ve drawn anything other than doodles since my injury, i kinda like it…

then, we came home, and went to a concert by The University of Washington Harry Partch Ensemble, with authentic Harry Partch instruments:

190413 Harry Partch Instruments
190413 Harry Partch Instruments

the instruments are the Cloud Chamber Bowls, the Adapted Viola, the Adapted Guitar III, The Kithara II, the Spoils Of War, the Bass Marimba the Harmonic Canon, the Surrogate Kithara, the Diamond Marimba, the Marimba Eroica, the Koto, and the Chromelodeons I and II

190413 Spoils Of War
190413 Spoils Of War

a close-up of the Spoils Of War, with the Cloud Chamber Bowls in the background, and the Diamond Marimba in the foreground

190413 Modified Viola music
190413 Modified Viola music

it’s STANDARD NOTATION!!! just sub-scripts and super-scripts to define the microtones and the rythmn… i never would have guessed… but, at the same time, when you’re already working with music that is THAT DIFFERENT from what we, in the west, think of as “normal”, i suppose it’s a lot easier to not have to learn a new way of notating that “abnormal” music, as well…

it turns out that the current Harry Partch Foundation is located at the UW, and all of his instruments are housed there. again, i never would have guessed, but… wow.

i told monique, when we walked into the concert hall, that they had not played a note and i was already ecstatic.

i started my third session of my circus class. it’s a “basic circus skills for handicapped adults” class — mostly people with parkinson’s — but, because of the fact that i took to unicycle, i started a unicycle class, as well:

190419 my very own unicycle!
190419 my very own unicycle!
at first, i borrowed a unicycle from one of monique’s co-workers, but it was too short, so i went on craigslist and bought an almost-new, used unicycle, that was exactly the same size wheel but a longer seatpost, that is now my very own, personal unicycle.

i have this vision — my training from the flybottle class would say “fantasy” — of what i want to do with the unicycle: there’s this guy, in portland, who is known as “The Unipiper”. he rides around portland, on a unicycle, playing a flaming bagpipe.

i’ve wanted to make a flaming tuba for a long time. i’ve got all the necessary materials to make a flaming tuba. all i have to do is learn to ride a unicycle, and i can be “The Tubacyclist”.

i hope to be relatively stable on the unicycle by OCF this year. i’m GOING to do this! 🐉

before & after

before
before

before = three notebooks and a file folder full of music, weighing approximately 40 to 50 pounds.

after
after

after = one 8½"x11½" tablet, weighing approximately 2 pounds.

and ALL of that music takes up only a tiny fraction of my local storage… 292.5MB out of 256GB, so there’s plenty of room for more, as well! 😎

when going places with my tuba and/or my trombone, this is definitely several steps in the right direction! 👍😎

although i’m probably still going to take the big purple notebook (on the bottom of the stack) with me, when i go busking, because when i’m playing for nickels and dimes, i don’t want to have a $1,500 tablet on my music stand where anyone can grab it and run off… 😉

a step forward

new ipad
new ipad
the fedex package finally arrived, which, of c(o)urse, meant that i went to the fedex distribution centre and forced them to let me have it there, rather than waiting for them to pull their head out of their ass and hire a full time driver who learns where my address is, instead of using a different contractor who doesn’t have the first clue — EVERY! SINGLE! TIME! 😠

anyway, i’ve got it more or less set up. i set it up as a new ipad, rather than transfering all of my old apps to it, which meant that i had — and still have — some finishing touches to add, most notably, the noisepad app, which requires a hard link to itunes in order to upload new sounds, but the version of itunes i have on my ancient macbook pro is several versions out of date and won’t recognise my new equipment, and even if it did, the ipad only has a USB-C plug, and my macbook only has USB-A plugs… so i’m probably going to have to use moe’s machine to get around that.

the big benefit is that i can display full-size, 8½”x11″ pages, which is 90% of my music, and the other 10%, which is more than one 8½”x11″ page, i can get a bluetooth foot-pedal page-turning gadget for about $50.

new ipad
new ipad

AND i’ve already got a fairly substantial portion of my music already “on the cloud” — i.e. either dropbox or my own, personal cloud-server — which means that, under the best of circumstances, i won’t even have to load my 256GB disk down with music files… although i might want to keep files on the ipad anyway, just in case i don’t have network connectivity, as i would (not) at the oregon country fair… 😉

and, after all, loading it down with music is the principle reason i bought a huge-ass tablet anyway… 😉

idea

thurible
thurible
recently, i’ve been incensing the neighbourhood.

i’ve been taking my thurible outside (because, realistically, that’s the only place i can use it without setting off my smoke alarm), drinking beer, smoking pot, listening to frank zappa, and burning frankincense, benzoin and copal resin — rather like the ethiopian family that lived next door to us, where we used to live, in renton, did…

although i’m reasonably sure that the ethiopian family didn’t smoke pot, drink beer, and listen to frank zappa… πŸ˜‰

but, basically, i really like burning incense, i really like burning frankincense, because it has the scientifically-proven ability to calm my anxiousness, and i really like “sharing” the good smells with my neighbours… whether they like it or not… 😈

which got me to thinking, yesterday…

i also REALLY like playing music for people. particularly, i really like playing my overtone flute at the oregon country fair, where people passing by have the possibility of hearing my music, but not knowing exactly from where it may be coming.

so, i thought, why not combine the two, and put together a “performance” or a “concert”, or something like that, where i set up somewhere, incense the whole place, and play my overtone flute?

it would have to be an outside venue, because nobody would want “concert” like this inside, where it would be extremely likely to set off smoke alarms, but that’s okay, because if it’s outside, there’s more of a possibility that people will experience the scent and not even be able to tell from where it’s coming… possible places are greenlake, volunteer park and gasworks park.

i would probably also want to set up a sign, or something, letting people know what i’m doing… but it would also be interesting to do that sort of thing without any clues, just to see how people might respond…

rⒾⓅoff…?

i present, for your musical enjoyment, Mexican Dance, by George Gershwin:

written in 1923, it is subtitled “Tomale o I’m Hot For You”.

it is suspiciously similar to Golliwogg’s Cakewalk, by Claude Debussy:

which was written in 1913… 😉

maque asked me to build a bullroarer

maque asked me to build a bullroarer. i may have gone a little bit overboard…

i built a 30″ bullroarer. it’s big enough that i had to order special rubber bands to finish it. then, when i realised that i had to wait for the rubber bands to be delivered, i went crazy and spent two days going various places searching for a suitable alternative.

180506 30 inch bullroarer
180506 30 inch bullroarer

it’s a lot quieter than i expected. i’m going to have to build a smaller one, like this:

to see if smaller helps it be noisier.

take-away from the 2018 moisture festival

here’s what i want:

i want a tablet that has a USB interface (or not, depending on its disk size) that is approximately 9″x12″ or thereabouts, on which i can store ALL of my music (and, potentially, music for everyone else in the band, as well). if it has a USB interface, then i can have different bands on different flash drives. if not, different bands go in different directories or suchlike. my understanding is that there is an “automatic page-turning” app that one operates with a remote using their feet, but my impression is that most PDF readers switch pages with a swipe, which is pretty much what i do already, anyway…

that way i won’t have to carry around 40 pounds of music, as well as my tuba, music stand and chair…

180325 tom noddy and the littlest gymnast
180325 tom noddy and the littlest gymnast
the second week of the moisture festival — the one that i played in, with the fremont philharmonic — is over. it went really well, i played a majority of the right notes, didn’t drop my music, or lose tunes, made a majority of my cues, kept ALL of my music in alphabetical order, except for the tunes that were “officially” part of the show, so i could find things instantaneously when things changed abruptly without warning…

which they INEVITABLY do at the moisture festival.

hacki and möppi were there, tom noddy was there, sandy was there, frank olivier was there, peewee and joanne (barry and yvonne, couple #69) were there… i saw people that i only see once a year, at the moisture festival… it was the 15th anniversary of the longest running comedy/varieté showcase IN THE WORLD (and my 15th year as a performer in the moisture festival), and hardly anybody mentioned the fact that the palladium is up for sale, and there’s a possibility that whoever buys it will not honour the contracts that events like the moisture festival (and the panto) have with mike hale… but, at least for now, things are happening in a more or less normal, for the moisture festival, way. who knows what’s going to happen next year… apparently somebody does, but it’s not me, and whoever it is, isn’t saying anything.

otamatone! オタマトーン 😊

i’ve wanted one for a long time: pretty much ever since i first read about them on internet, a few years ago. but i’ve never bought one, because it seemed too frivolous… and i’ve read some really negative reviews of them, that made me think they are not very well built, and so forth.

but this a gift, and it is from my lovely wife, so, of course i want it… and, actually, it plays pretty well — for a “novelty” “toy” that doesn’t have notes marked on it… it will definitely be an honoured member of my sound-effects collection, if nothing else… 😊

otamatone オタマトーン
otamatone オタマトーン

not only that, but the guy on the package (who, i assume, is Novmichi Tosa, the inventor of the otamatone), is wearing a wrist watch with an old-school telephone dial on it:

wrist watch with a telephone dial... what does it do?
wrist watch with a telephone dial… what does it do?

bleugh…

i’ve been sick for the past couple of days. i hope i’m going to be well enough to perform in cinderella on saturday, because that’s when it starts. dress rehearsal is tomorrow, and i haven’t even marked all of the sound effects or where to use them, so it’s going to be touch and go. i should be well enough to make rehearsal tomorrow, but i’ve already loaded the first batch of sound effects into my car. i’ve still got a huge box, plus the bell, which has it’s own stand…

i’ve volunteered to play trombone for a SANCApators performance at Teatro ZinZanni in redmond, in february. reheasals start during the run of cinderella, but the sancapators rehearse during the week, and cinderella is on the weekend, so there won’t be any conflict.

#SCROTUS #drumpf just reduced the size of two national monuments, Bear’s Ears, and Escalante, in utah, to about half of their original size. he wants to eliminate all national monuments, completely, and open the areas for oil drilling and mineral exploration. it’s probably illegal, and there’s already at least one lawsuit filed over it, but that won’t stop him from running rough-shod over it while he has the chance. DAPL has already sprung a couple of leaks, and there are lawsuits over that, as well, but you can’t put oil back in the ground, once it has been extracted… and spilled. meanwhile, there’s a rumour that democrats are going to force a vote to impeach him soon, but as long as the republicretins are in the majority, it’s not going to go anywhere. there’s eventually going to be action from special prosecutor mueller – he just subpoenad Deutsche Bank’s records concerning #drumpf’s accounts, and those of his family (although faux/fake news/jay sekulow (of the ACLJ, a “christian” hate-group) says that he hasn’t), which, allegedly, was the line across which, if he stepped, #drumpf had vowed to fire mueller, but it just happened this morning, so there’s no news on whether he will actually follow through. my personal opinion is that, if he fires mueller, i’m going to start fomenting revolution, and i’m not alone. on the other hand, if he doesn’t fire mueller, then he can definitely be more easily impeached, because his criminal activities, not to mention his treason, will be much more obvious… but once #drumpf is impeached, we’re going to have to impeach pence, and ryan, and the whole list of “republicans all the way down” before anything is going to change… and the only other option is for mueller to declare the 2016 election null-and-void, because of #drumpf’s treason and collusion, but, by then, it’ll be too late to do it over… and it’s never been done before, so nobody’s really sure whether or not it even CAN be done…

i want to be the person he shoots

moe’s father and his piano

moe’s father died, suddenly, in late october. his funeral was last saturday. some would say “fortunately”, i had two panto performances that day, so i couldn’t go. however, one of the things that was an upshot of moe’s father dying was that moe inherited his piano. so, we now have a fairly decent spinnet piano in our house… or, rather, it will be a fairly decent spinnet piano when we get somebody in to fix the dead keys and clean out the bird-seed and spider-webs. in order to fit it in our house, we had to completely clear out the “office/guest-bedroom” which hasn’t been used as either for a couple of years. the office had a double bed, and a reclining chair that turns into a single bed, along with all of my inventory from hybrid elephant, most of my sound effects (i.e. the ones that i don’t have at the panto currently), a trombone, three trumpets, two soprano clarinets, an alto clarinet, a guitar, a whole bunch of home-made instruments, two huge bags of air-pillow packing materials, a cosco-sized bundle of paper towel rolls, three sleeping bags, and a bunch of other miscellaneous stuff. we got up fairly early yesterday, cleaned out the room and the hallway leading to it, and then we, along with moe’s step-brother, took delivery of a piano. also, because of the fact that it was superfluous, we freecycled the bed… and then we loaded up the back of moe’s step-brother’s truck and made a dump run with a bunch of brush and old lumber.

initially, i was hesitant about bringing the piano into our house, because i was under the impression that it was one of those upright pianos that you see in old western movies, that people stand, lean on, and put their glasses of beer on top of. this piano is actually about half that size. it’s about 3 feet tall, and 24 inches deep.

so, now, instead of an “office/guest-bedroom”, we have a “music room/guest-bedroom”. i’ve already moved in my bach trombone, my fender-rhodes piano, my DX-7, my E♭ tuba, my Sandviker’s Stradivarius musical saw, and my didjeriflute. the theory is that, eventually, that will be a place where we (meaning moe, too, whether she likes it or not! 😈) can go and IMMEDIATELY play music on a variety of instrumets, and the most preparation we might have to do is take an instrument out of its case. it will also be very beneficial for me, when i am transcribing music and need a keyboard. and, because my laptop is portable, i can easily use it to do all kinds of recording and editing and, using my DX-7 as a MIDI controller, i can even use my laptop as an instrument… 😎

Your Gold Teeth II

Your Gold Teeth II

Who are these children
Who scheme and run wild
Who speak with their wings
And the way that they smile
What are the secrets
They trace in the sky
And why do you tremble
Each time they ride by

Throw out your gold teeth
And see how they roll
The answer they reveal
Life is unreal

Who are these strangers
Who pass through the door
Who cover your action
And go you one more
If you’re feeling lucky
You best not refuse
It’s your game the rules
Are your own win or lose

Throw out your gold teeth
And see how they roll
The answer they reveal
Life is unreal

the bewlay brothers

in the mid-1980s, i lived in an apartment with randy, who was a david bowie fanatic. i was not, at the time, because i had been brought up listening to jazz, classical, and contemporary classical music, had been heavily involved with jazz, marching and concert bands and orchestras, and, basically, “didn’t have time” to listen to “inferior” music made by “talentless” artists.

but, at the same time, i was also beginning to suspect that everything i had learned about “christianity” was not only false, but that there HAD to be another alternative to what the “christians” were ranting about. i had read some of the works of Aliester Crowley, and been able to make exactly zero sense of it, and started heading for other religions to fill the gaps.

then i heard this song, and a few others like it, and they helped me to realise that sometimes, in order to comprehend the deeper meanings of things, one had to read more than what was on the surface…

new antique music by somebody else…

once again, i would like to offer my utmost gratitude to my wife, who made it possible for me to own the awesome music notation software called Sibelius. it has made processes like this take so much less time than doing the same thing “by hand”… and it’s not something that i have to imagine, as i have actually done projects like this “by hand” in the past, and it was so tedious and drawn-out over, literally, months, that i no longer do such projects… conversely, this project in it’s entirety, took 5 weeks to go from “a gleam in my eye” to having finished parts and a recording… and 4 weeks and 5 days of that were waiting for the score to arrive from the publisher. 😎

so, there’s this march in honor of Joyce’s 71st New York Regiment written in 1881 by Thornton Barnes Boyer, which we’ve been trying to play with the Ballard Sedentary Sousa Band for several years now, and getting nowhere… primarily because of the fact that there are several different “arrangements” of it scattered across the 35-odd musicians in the band, which have several differences which, while not major, definitely mean that playing it as an ensemble is a lot more difficult. and that’s not to mention that it is in the key of E♭ minor (six flats, for those of you who may not know), which, for a community band with players of all abilities, is asking a bit too much…

but that may or may not be the issue, as i discovered at a recent BSSB rehearsal that, in fact, there are two different “arrangements” of Joyce’s 71st NY Regiment March just in the trombone section, and that they are enough different that playing the two of them and expecting it to sound even reasonably coherent was impossible, as one of them had the “Trio” in an entirely different key all together.

a little bit of research revealed the fact that there are several different “arrangements”, which include adding harmony and ornamentation to the trio, changing the key of the trio to the relative major, and changing the location of the “Da Capo”, all of which were made long after the original composer, TB Boyer, had passed on, and nobody could decide which of the many different arrangements was “best”. one thing that they all agreed on, however, was that the original piece had been published by J.W.Pepper.

a tiny light bulb appeared over my head, as i realised that i actually own a 100-year-old musical instrument with the J.W.Pepper logo stamped on it, and i actually know where J.W.Pepper has a branch location in tukwilla…

so, i went to J.W.Pepper and asked if they still carried the original version of Joyce’s 71st NY Regiment March, not arranged by anyone, and, bob’s-yer-uncle, they have it. not only that, but they have a version of it that has been transcribed for modern instruments, which is really an issue when you realise that what constitutes a concert band has changed pretty dramatically in the past 120 years: no saxhorns, no helicons, no ophecleids, quinticlaves or clavitubes, no serpents, consistent woodwinds, a tuning note that is several cents higher than it was, etc., etc., etc…

however, they sold the publishing rights to some other company, which only prints copies on demand, so i had to wait until they printed a copy… just for meeeeee… 😊

i got it the other day, and entered it into the aforementioned, AWESOME MUSIC NOTATION SOFTWARE (which took all of 5 hours, stretched out over a couple of days) and transposed it down a half-step, into D minor, which only has one flat!

my impression is that it will be much easier to muddle our way through, now that we’ve all got the same arrangement, and it’s in a key that doesn’t twist our brains while we’re trying to learn it… 👍

and, because of the fact that the software also outputs in sound formats, i have been able to hear what it’s going to sound like (more or less) to make sure that all the parts are correct BEFORE i print them and hand them out to people!

Joyce’s 71st New York Regiment March

i suppose this is the only time i’m going to have to update this in a while…

so the moisture festival starts this week. i’ve got a sancapators rehearsal on wednesday, and then i play with the sancapators on thursday. then i’ve got a fremont philharmonic rehearsal on saturday. then starting a week from wednesday i play, with snake suspenderz, one show each wednesday, thursday and friday, three shows saturday, two shows sunday and one show monday. then i’ve probably got a fremont phil rehearsal on saturday, april 4th, and on wednesday the 8th i start all over again, with the phil, one show each on wednesday, thursday and friday, three shows saturday, and two shows sunday. my recollection is that last year i got sick on one of the days that i played with the sancapators, and spent the rest of the festival recovering. i’m going to try to avoid that this year, if at all possible.

moe broke a tooth few weeks ago, while she was on her way to las vegas, and then she broke another tooth about a week later, which she had pulled about a week ago, which resulted in dry socket, a very painful condition that i would have preferred she NOT have to suffer. she went to the dentist today to get her crown made, for the original tooth she broke, and she’s got another appointment to have some other work done in a couple of weeks. it makes me really glad that i’ve got indestructable teeth (seriously, ever since i was a kid the dentists i have gone to have shooed me out of their office as quickly as possible so that they can get actual, paying customers in their chairs, and some have been rather obvious and rude about it), but i wish she didn’t have to go through all this, because i know how painful it can be. 😐

i splurged and bought a USB turntable that actually works (compared to the sony turntable that i had, which appeared to work, but didn’t, in some extremely significant ways that weren’t actually evident until almost the end of the project), and re-started on the process of rendering all of the remaining vinyl in the house (which is a surprisingly small amount at this point) into a digital format that can be played on “today’s” devices. i’m rendering the vinyl albums into .flac format, for burning onto CDs, .ogg format for playing on my desktop, and .mp3 format for playing on my phone and tablet… of course i’m also thinking of how this whole project can be monetized once i’m finished with my own projects, because i can’t be the only person with a hoard of obsolete but desirable music… πŸ‘Ώ

some jehovah’s witlesses just came by our house. it’s the first active evangelisation attempt we’ve had on the house in a very long time. the last time i was taken off guard and actually took their line of drivel for a minute before i ejected them from the property, but this time i was alerted (thanks to zorah, who barks at anything that moves, so i had to be a little aware, as well), and i met the guy on the front porch and told him that i wasn’t interested in his drivel before he even had the chance to say anything. i went back in the house and, while i watched, four more people in a car drove up, so i went down to the driveway and said, very clearly and slowly, “Tina Chopp is God! Praise her OR DIE!!”… i suppose now they’re going to call the police on me, but it was worth it. πŸ‘Ώ

by the way, this post is at least partially because my sister posted that she and her husband are “not very exciting people”… the reason you’re not very exciting people is because you don’t try hard enough… πŸ˜›

rehearsal season is here

monday i’ve got a fremont phil rehearsal. tuesday i have a sousa band rehearsal. wednesday i have a fighting instruments of karma rehearsal. thursday i have a snake suspenderz gig. sunday, a week from today, i have a fremont phil gig. wednesday week, i have a fighting instruments of karma rehearsal… then the moisture festival starts…

oy… 😐

J.W. Pepper

Tenor Hornin a post called fezorocity and antique brass…, from 100911, i wrote of obtaining an antique tenor horn, around 100 years old, stamped with the J.W. Pepper logo. i actually did some research online and found pictures of similar horns from around the same era.

i immediately featured the horn in an educational post entitled “THE "RIGHT WAY" TO REMOVE A STUCK BRASS MOUTHPIECE“, in which i used it as an example of a stuck mouthpiece and the correct way to remove it.

120502 tuba triothen, on 120502, i posted a composite photo of me playing three different tubas, one of which was that same horn with the J.W. Pepper logo. at the time i was under the impression that it was more or less a “mid-west” and/or east coast company.

little did i know… 😎

140331 salamandir at the moisture festivalit turns out that there’s a branch of J.W. Pepper in tukwilla, just down the street from ikea. i went in there today and immediately felt like i’d been there all my life… they had racks of catalogued sheet music all over the place, a rack of batons for sale on the desk, and a friendly dog who greeted me at the door.

i ordered a copy of the piano score for Le Tombeau de Couperin by Ravel, which should be here next week, and i’m going to take the horn with me. 😎

music

i found the web site put up by Dave Gannett, who is my unwitting mentor in all things tuba. dave is the tuba player for Uncle Yoke’s Black Dawgs, a dixieland band from kissimmee florida, the artist behind Tubas From Hell, and one AWESOME tuba player. my first experience seeing him live was at the Friday Harbour Traditional Jazz Festival in 1991, where he played The Flight of The Bumblebee — at the correct speed — on his sousaphone. when he finished the piece, he had it rigged up so that he blew smoke and flames out of his bell on the last note…

i knew i had found a mentor at that moment… πŸ˜‰

also, two more tracks for The Church of The Pleistocene, thanks to my recent re-acquaintance with Dr. J. Vernon McGee of Thru The Bible Radio Network. i listened to Dr. J. during my ill-fated time as a taxi driver, just before the birth of my son. the main reason i listened to him was because, at the time, taxi cabs only came with AM radios, and the music on AM radio was AWFUL… Dr. J. Vernon McGee wasn’t an awful lot better, but at least i got familiar enough with his distinctive ‘twang’ to make music out of it thirty years later…

How Firm A Foundation (A Tribute to Dr. J. Vernon McGee)
We Don’t Like Things Like This

heebie

i’m cold, and i also think that i may be getting a cold, which is not good, because i’ve got important obligations that i’m probably going to have to fulfill, even if i am sick. it may just be that i am still wearing summer-ish clothing and it’s getting to the point where i should probably switch to winter-ish clothing, but i’m too lazy.

the obligations for the next few weeks include: giving rick a ride to the cannabis dispensary (which is usually an “all-day” event, depending on how many dispensaries we visit), a fremont phil gig for a moisture-festival/panto-related performance, the winter panto performances, the lenin lighting, and probably a bunch of other rehearsals, gigs, and what-have-you, that i am forgetting.

we’re well into the fall/winter rehearsal season, but we have only had one panto rehearsal, because all of the music isn’t completed yet. i have two new arrangements for the phil which are ready, however: one is a piano rag by scott joplin called “I Am Thinking Of My Pickaninny Days”, and the other is an arrangement of that piece of music made famous by the bulgarian womens’ radio choir, called “Polegnala e Todora” by philip koutev, which is in 11/16… it’s almost in 3/4 time, but not quite… which may make it a lot more difficult to play, but i’m hoping that we won’t have to get too technical about it. it’s also got a rubato feel about it, that, i’m hoping, will cover for any glaring technical difficulties that we might encounter.

even though i haven’t heard a note of either of them, i’m fairly confident that the arrangements are not going to be the problem once we actually get around to rehearsing them, because i also wrote an arrangement of Drei Equale für Vier Posaunen by beethoven, only four steps lower (so you don’t have to use an alto trombone for the high part), which i tried out with the trombone section from the ballard sedentary sousa band over the weekend. while they were sight-reading, completely unsure of the notes, and not playing with any confidence whatsoever, when they were all playing in the same place, the arrangement stood on its own… completely unlike the previous times i have tried to arrange things, using lilypond, and had significant difficulties getting the right notes to go down on the printed page.

moe has decided that we have to paint and re-carpet the bedroom before our new, king-sized bed arrives, which means that, once again, i am surrounded by boxes, and stacks of stuff, and dressers and suchlike that were in our bedroom. of course, the up side to all this is that, in a couple weeks or so, we will have a freshly, newly-repainted bedroom, with new fixtures, and a new bed… it’ll sort of be like a hotel room, except that we won’t have to go home eventually.

the rat problem is still there. i trapped two rats earlier this week. they go for two or three days without touching the traps, and then there are two in one day… then they go back to not touching them again. these intelligent creatures are being murdered by me, because they are destructive to the way i want to live. i am responsible for the murders of cute, furry, intelligent, rat mothers, fathers, brothers, and sisters, because i don’t like the fact that they chewed up the pluming under the floor of my house…

no matter how hard i try, i am unable to convince myself that what i am doing is not wrong. πŸ˜›

misc.

i panicked

i got this silly little app for my smart phone called Yellofier which is presented by a pair of folks, one of whom is boris blank (of Yello). the app is, basically, a sampler with a bunch of preset effects and a bunch of preset samples, and a sequencer, all of which is obscured by an interesting, quasi-intuitive interface. i’m not sure i’m going to actually use it for anything, although there is already a group that has has released an album using it… or, perhaps, because of that fact… but it’s silly and fun, and it will give me something to do while everybody else is playing angry birds. here is an example of what i’ve been doing so far.

snake suspenderz has been pretty busy recently. we did a wedding, and we did a set for the chateau at valley center, and today we’ve got a moisture festival ( 😐 ) gig. who knows how long it’s going to last this time, but fun is fun, so why not go with it?

Sony Super-Audio CD

quite a number of years ago, i bought a CD of “The Antiphonal Music Of Gabrieli” subtitled “The Glorious Sound of Brass” by the Philidelphia Brass Ensemble, The Cleveland Brass Ensemble and the Chicago Brass Ensemble. it was, i believe, one of the first purchases i ever made on a, then, brand new service called “amazon”, but the current iteration of that service has no record of my purchasing anything like that, so it might have been some other online service.

i have been playing music by giovanni gabrieli for a long time, and he is one of my favourite brass composers, so i figured that this would be an excellent addition to my music collection. however, when i received the disk in the mail, i put it into my CD player and…

nothing happened.

this was before computers had CD players on a regular basis, and the dedicated audio CD player that i had was a sony “diskman” that someone had been throwing away, so i searched around and found another dedicated audio CD player that didn’t have such a sordid background and put the disk in that and…

nothing happened.

then i took a closer look at the CD itself. what i found was this TINY inscription that said this disc is designed for use in super audio cd players only on the back of the box.

no problem, i figured. i’ll just put it into my (at the time) “state of the art” work computer (which did have a CD-ROM drive) and it’ll play there… no, i didn’t think i’d copy it into MP3 files, because this was before MP3 files existed.

but i was mistaken. it didn’t play there, either…

but it is gabrieli, and i’m sure the music is SUPERB, so i didn’t send the disk back. i held on to it, on the off chance that, at some point i would run into someone who had a “super audio CD” player.

which brings us to today… close to 15 years later, and i have tried it on every single computer i have owned, and a bunch of other peoples’ equipment, and i have STILL never heard this CD.

i have, since, learned that sony introduced the super audio CD in 1999, and by 2007 it was considered a failure, and not significantly better quality than standard CDs, but that didn’t make the fact that i have this one disk of music that i really like any easier to listen to… or copy into a format that i can listen to — which, i suppose, is what all this copyright/piracy gibberish that i hear bandied about in the news, is all about to begin with…

but, come on… this is all music that was recorded previously — the SACD is a combination of three other 12″ LP records, released between 1955 and 1980 — and i paid for the music… NOT the incomprehensible file format, or whatever it is that makes this particular disk NOT PLAY in the audio equipment that i HAVE. 😐 furthermore, i’m NOT going to buy a SACD player, which are now “audiophile” equipment, and cost anywhere up to three times what they did originally, so that i can play this ONE disk.

bottom line: does somebody out there have a SACD player that i can hook up to my computer, so i can make FLAC copies of the music? i have a digital pre-amp that plugs into my computer and has RCA inputs, and i have RCA cables, so all i need is the player, and you’d be able to get it back after i’m finished… i’d really appreciate it…

sibelius

the software, not the composer…

i bit the bullet and bought the academic version of sibelius 7… which cost $300, rather than the standard version, which has less capabilities, but costs $700 (a thing which i have yet to figure out, even though the capabilities that the educational version has are useless to me, because it requires that i have a network with at least one other installation of the educational version installed on it).

it actually took me a few days to make it “legal” because of the fact that moe’s WSU email address had been changed (since she graduated… oops!) and we had to work around that until she was able to phone the helpdesk and get things straightened out.

now that it is all legal and everything, i’ve gotta start actually learning how to use it. but it’s easy enough to use that, already, before i’ve even completed one of the FOUR two-hour tutorials it came with(!), i have been able to complete two lead sheets for beatles tunes that i copied from THE BOOK for snake suspenderz, and create a 6-part arrangement of a piano rag by scott joplin for the fremont philharmonic.

i still haven’t realised all of the goodies that this new, legal software holds in store for me, but i think it’s already well on the way to paying me back for the money i spent on it. 😎

whooee… 8P

okay, i had three gigs in three days with three different… well… iterations of the same band: Accidental Rhino is howlin’ hobbit and two or more other musicians, of which i am, frequently, one. i took monday off (to get caught up with laundry and dishes), and then today i had a rehearsal, tomorrow i’ve got a parade, and thursday i’ve got another gig…

i guess you could say i’ve been pretty busy… i’m certainly going through spoons at a phenomenal rate, although, surprisingly, i haven’t been feeling the lack of them – that much – the past few days. i’ve been really tired and sleeping a lot more than normal, but the fact that i made $300 in three days sort of offsets that.

the potential major blow-up that i’ve been suspecting is around the corner for about 6 months has, miraculously, been put on the back burner AGAIN, which is good from one standpoint, but questionable, at best, from the place where i see it. it’s not that i want this particular blow-up to happen, but my impression is that if it has been put on the back burner again, then it will be that much more spectacular and unpleasant when it finally gets around to happening.

not my music, technically, but…

two tracks by my friend Pliny Keep:

God Is Dead, Let’s Fuck

Art Is A Fart

pliny is a guy that i have known since he was about 14 or so. he is one of the best wordsmiths i have ever met. he raps in normal conversation without even meaning to. he invented a new art-form, which is called SPLAB.

these tracks were recorded in the late 1980s or early 1990s and have been lost in my box of tapes until today.

(previously, previouslyer, previouslyer, previouslyer, previouslyer)

functioning societies

the new orchid spangiafora album has got me inspired… i’ve got a whole bunch of cassette tapes of evangelical preachers ranting about this and that, which have been waiting for me to do something creative with, for quite a long time indeed, and now is the time. Functioning Societies Don’t Do That is a preliminary sketch, based on the source material found here. enjoy it or else… 😎

Functioning Societies QR-codeETA: i just figured out that, because i posted this on the web, it is now accessible by google, who conveniently gave me this wonderful QR code. because of the fact that i “know what to do” with QR codes, i can now make a meaningless-babble art which, under the right circumstances, will take people to a recording of this, and they won’t have the first clue what has happened…

i remember, a few months ago, i found a QR code posted on a utility pole in some extremely seedy part of downtown seattle. at the time, i didn’t have a QR-code-reader on my phone, but despite that fact, i’m about 90% certain that, if i did, it would take me to some web site for a band, or a porno site, or something like that… this will take people to a place that really will make them wonder… <hee hee hee>

mystery explained!

i logged into my computer today, and discovered the following email message from r. carey, the artist behind orchid spangiafora:

I recently checked the discogs page for Tin Windows and saw your name listed in the “want this” list. I remember our correspondence from the 1990s and I wanted you to have a copy. I have no idea why Feeding Tube didn’t respond to your email. I’ll have to talk to them and make sure they are getting their mail. I got your post office address from a link on the hybridelephant site. You are (obviously) free to do whatever you like with the five copies, but I thought if you had some extras they might find their way to some interesting people. Anyway, I hope you enjoy it.

squeeeeEEEEEEEEEEE!!!! πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€

weird mystery…

in november of last year, i read of a “new” recording by Orchid Spangiafora.

by “new” i assumed it meant “newer than Orchid Spangiafora’s first release”, which was their 1979 album called Flee Pasts Ape Elf — an ASTOUNDING work, which is still one of my all time favourites, but, unfortunately, it has been out of print for a LOOOOONG time.

specifically, the announcement said: “Tin Windows – 7″ vinyl 45 RPM – Available now at Feeding Tube Records, Northampton, MA and at Fusetron, Brooklyn, NY or try Discogs”. so, i emailed “feedingtube at me dot com” with an inquiry, and received no response… after waiting around four weeks, i figured that “new” meant some time before the year 2000, and that it was no longer available. i stopped expecting a response around the new year, and forgot all about it by the end of january. it’s important to remember that i NEVER paid, nor did i give any indication that i was GOING TO pay, and i NEVER gave them my physical address.

today(!) i got a “mystery package” in the mail. it was neither expected nor anticipated. it was addressed to my business address, and had a return address i didn’t recognise. contained within the package were not one, but FIVE copies of “Tin Windows”…

five BRAND NEW, UNPLAYED copies of the 7″ vinyl 45 RPM record…

and it turns out that “new” means april, 2012… meaning that it is, ACTUALLY a completely new release… πŸ˜€

i don’t know how they got my address, although it MAY BE because, several years ago (1996? 1997?), i corresponded briefly with the artist behind Orchid Spangiafora, and traded music with him… but if i recall correctly, that was before i had my current email address, and before i moved into my current location — which means that my business address was different, as well…

but, hey… i’m definitely NOT complaining… 😎

okay

moe has gone to southern oregon for the national sheep-dog handling finals — yes, we have not one, but two championship-quality dogs in this house, thanks, in part, to moe, who is the dog-whisperer to dog-whisperers… 😎 (and that guy who is “The Dog Whisperer” really doesn’t know what he’s talking about most of the time… really… you should hear moe rant about how cesar milan is wrecking dogs, when she gets to ranting about him)

but, of course, the down side to all of this, is that moe is gone for a week, and i have to stay here, because i have a performance on saturday and it would be too far to drive back from klamath falls for, especially since we’d either have to take both cars, or i would have to drive from klamath falls to seattle for a 2 hour performance, and then drive back to klamath falls to pick up moe and her dogs and gear… which would be especially important since we just bought a trailer/pop-up-tent/RV-like-thing, and that isn’t going anywhere without a vehicle to tow it.

so, the upshot of the whole deal is that i am alone for a week, with an ancient, decrepit dog, two ancient, decrepit cats, a bird (who is neither ancient nor decrepit), and an ancient, decrepit snake… i guess, since i am verging on ancient and decrepit myself, i’m in good company, but i would really prefer it if i was with moe, or she was with me… there’s nobody but stanley to talk to, and, while some of the things he says are definitely amusing, he doesn’t always respond the way a human being would…

the performance is with the sousa band, at Festa Italiana, and they’re probably going to feed us… which is always the right thing to do for musicians that you hire to come and play for your party… πŸ˜‰

apart from that, i’m still going back-and-forth with the incense guy from india. everything was going as expected until he quoted me a price that is essentially what i charge my retail customers for what would essentially be a wholesale purchace. when i responded, he didn’t come back with an answer for a few days, and then, this morning, he came back with a response in which he, basically, offered me the same incense for a quarter of the price, but only if i order more than a certain amount of it… which i would do, but i don’t want to seem too eager, because i know that if i can put him off long enough, the price has a very good probability of going down even further… and if not, it will also give me time to build up my bank account to the point where i can actually afford to buy a whole pile of incense from india… 😎

i still haven’t gone out to busk with my didjeri-flute/delay/amp setup yet, but i have been out busking with my tuba at least twice in the past week. a couple of days ago, i went out to the ballard sunday market, ostensibly to play with hobbit, but as we were getting set up, we were joined by julie b. who plays “delicious violin” (really, it says so on her cute little business card), who hobbit knows from the pike place market… and with a very little prompting from hobbit, we played quite acceptably, got a couple of inquiries about whether or not we were available for house parties(!) and made some generous tips for playing for a little less than 2 hours… i get the impression that, with a little more prompting, we could either add a violin to snake suspenderz (on a more-or-less temporary basis) or we could simply bill Accidental Rhino as a separate band and have twice as many gigs… either way is fine with me.

paeudt

i actually took my art car to the rainier beach artwalk today, which is the first time since i actually put art on it, and i wasn’t planning on doing something else, that i have attended an “art car function” this year… and i was pleasantly surprised to discover that the art-cartists were paid $25 just for being there. 😎 i also brought my didjeri-flute and played for a while… sort of like at burning man, with no expectation of anything other than making weird noises for people. the weather was cooperative, and not windy enough that it was impossible to play, but there was no electricity, so the delay/amplification wasn’t there, and, as a result, i competed with the bands across the street for most of the time i was there.

and, while i’m on the subject, Snake Suspenderz, the Official SACBO Band, is playing at The Can Can in the Pike Place Market, tuesday 9/18 at 7:00. cover is $5.00 and we hope to see a lot of art car people there! 😎 the snake suspenderz site or buy tickets.

but i’m still struggling with a couple of tunes, which i don’t remember, in spite of the fact that i’ve attempted to play them a number of times recently, and vowed to remember what they were… i really need to start writing down stuff like like that, because my memory is CRAP… 😐 and that has been complicated by the fact that my band-mates don’t feel like checking and responding to their emails: there are two days between now and when we play at the can can, i have repeatedly requested a rehearsal, or some busking, or (preferably) both, since wednesday or so, and i have gotten mediocre and lack-lustre responses AT BEST from the other members of my band… and i’m feeling frustrated about it, because my performance is going to suffer if a rehearsal (at least) doesn’t happen before tuesday! 😐

but, back to my didjeri-flute ravings for a moment: i REALLY need to get out to somewhere where there’s a publically-accessible electrical outlet and no wind (the public space at crossroads mall immediately springs to mind. why? i don’t know, but there it is), and see how i do busking on my own. i’ve got to put together a “busking kit” sort of like the one hobbit has, which includes a tip container and a sign indicating that it’s there… i wonder if the broken wire music stand i “donated” to hale’s palladium is still there?

i’m still “brewing” some new art, as well. it may be that it has something to do with my didjeri-flute, but i’m still not sure. πŸ˜‰

oh yeah, we also rocked their world at cholmondleighland last saturday. we got raving reviews from avner the eccentric who said “If I have a pit, I want you in it!” and said that he’d put in a good word for us with tim at the moisture festival for next year! (WOO HOO!!)

music, video

i played with the fremont philharmonic at big red last night, and also played my didjeriflute for a “talent show”. then, this morning, i got up at an unreasonably early hour and went to the ballard sunday market, where i busked with snake suspenderz until noon, whereupon i went to the edmonds city park and played with the ballard sedentary sousa band.

the video is pretty much exactly what i wanted, but i really need to figure out how to work iMovie a little better, because it could be a lot better… i’m not sure if i want to make a separate video explaining how the flute is made and how to play it, or whether i want to re-make the current video with that information included… or even if i actually want to include information about how it is made and how it is played… i mean, i suppose anybody with a little imagination can probably figure those things out, but it’s kinda neat that, as far as i can tell, NOBODY has done this kind of thing, and made a video of it before. 😎

finally…

so i’ve put together another And More album, but for a long time (i.e. more than two but not quite three weeks) i have been trying to upload the files to bandcamp, and my browser keeps coming back with a “we’re sorry, but you’re fucked” error, by which the bandcamp people have been stumped.

i finally got it to upload today, from opera on the mac… i tried multiple different combinations of browser and operating system, but apparently i never tried opera on mac… i still don’t know why it wouldn’t upload with any other browser, on either operating system, but now that it’s uploaded, here it is:

as may be obvious…

or not…

i have been rather busy over the past week, with rehearsals and preparations for my trip to san francisco. they said not to mention it on social networks or tell anyone why, so it’s still somewhat of a secret (although if you know me personally, you’ll probably have heard me mention it in passing).

the rest of the past week has been filled with transferring vinyl to digital. since i damaged your ears with some early “music” in which i performed earlier in the week, i figured it would be only just to undo the damage with some real, quality music, performed by REAL musicians…

Porgy And Bess: A Symphonic Portrait, by George Gershwin, arranged by Robert Russell Bennett
performed by the 1975 – 1976 Seattle Youth Symphony Orchestra

what i’m doing

i got a turntable off of freecycle, and i bought a behringer phono-to-USB pre-amp, and i am currently listening to the National Geographic recording “On Parade – The Music of John Philip Sousa” which has not been played in over 30 years. i am not only listening to music i haven’t heard since i got rid of my turntable (which was built by my father, out of spare parts from several other projects) in 1980 or thereabouts, but i am transforming them into the next generation of music files: ones which you can reproduce on your computer… will wonders never cease… i still have a huge crate of vinyl LPs (most of which are crap) that i’m going to dig out over the next few days and have fun (or not) turning all of them into ogg-vorbis files.

8)

wow…

okay, i’ve been REALLY busy over the past week, ending with a snake suspenderz gig and four panto performances in the past three days… which, oddly enough, has already resulted in my having, in my hot little hands at this very moment (well, not this very moment, because i’m typing – and that rather badly, because of the fact that my hands are cold – but you get the idea) cash and checks amounting to more than $250… and i’ve got another $100 being transferred to my bank account from paypal…

today i took an order from Rev. Mary, who called me on the phone this morning inquiring about aparajita… she didn’t say who she was, but she was raving about how much she likes it, and said that she wanted to buy 5 boxes. we talked for about half an hour about how much incense has changed since the 1960s and the “new trends” in incense. she then said that she would order from the site. when the order came in, it was for 12 boxes, which makes me think that it may be about time to contact that guy in india who has been spamming me with requests for the past year, who i finally convinced to shut up and go away…

anyway, back to rev. mary… i had no idea who she was when she called. i have since (obviously) discovered who she is and where she’s coming from. i’m rather amused that an old-time gospel preacher’s wife has latched onto my incense, but i’m not sure that she could be even more bizarre than i first imagined. she’s an old lady (the picture on her web site was taken at least 20 years ago, judging solely by what she sounds like), and it could very well be that she’s a “reformed” hippy, or, possibly one of those weird cross-breed hippies that took jeezis instead of LSD… or, she could be pre-hippy, a real old-time gospel preacher and just really like quality incense regardless of what religion its maker and seller belongs to, OR she could be really ignorant of everything (although how one could order incense from hybrid elephant and not come away with the impression that i might be hindu is somewhat beyond me, it may be that i am a little too close to the subject to be very objective) and has no idea that i’m not a “christian” as well…

anyway, she ordered 12 boxes, which means that i only have 10 left… and that’s including my “personal” stash…

鮭汁

鮭汁

so i’ve been feeling really subdued since being cracked last week… despite the fact that it didn’t really affect me that much, and i recovered quickly and completely with no more hassle and upset than the crack caused itself, i just haven’t felt like communicating that much.

we have only just gotten started with the panto rehearsals, although my understanding is that the players have actually been working separately for some time. we’ve only got a few weeks before the show goes live, and it has been almost completely rewritten between OCF and now, so it would really be good if things were moving somewhat more quickly, but i imagine it will all work out in the end.

snake suspenderz has a gig at mosaic coffee house on friday, which nobody remembered until i made some comment about a week ago that i had this gig on my schedule… and, at first, it was dismissed as a hallucination until hobbit realised that he had, in fact, scheduled the gig. we were doing really well, had a whole bunch of gigs in a row there for a while, and were making regular money busking, but recently it’s gone downhill, and we haven’t even rehearsed since the middle of last month.

the sousa bash went off without a hitch, and the sousa band is now officially on vacation until spring, with the exception of the phinney ridge holiday festival, which i’m not sure i’m going to this year, because it is REALLY crowded.

whuff

i realised, once again, why i don’t schedule more than one gig per day yesterday…

i’m beginning a couple weeks of relative busy-ness, and it started off with partying and not getting enough sleep saturday night, and continued abruptly yesterday, when i got up way too early and went to the ballard sunday market with snake suspenderz and busked for approximately 1½ hours before we were run off by a string quartet which was playing vivaldi and bach. while they were playing acceptably well, they set up 20 feet away from us and wouldn’t fess up when confronted with their rudeness… and then we discovered that it’s apparently a “new policy” that buskers have to get up and move every half an hour…

by the time we had played for half an hour or so with a classical accompaniment (which was really confusing, at best, and downright distracting most of the time) we decided to bag it, especially since i had to go to my second gig anyway, which was the ballard sedentary sousa band at the ballard locks… which was, fortunately, just down the street.

it was clear from the start that i wasn’t going to be able to play my best, because i had already been playing my best for an hour and a half at the previous gig, but this was on my trombone and that was on my tuba, and i figured that would account for something… but if it did, i probably wouldn’t have noticed anyway, because by the time we were done playing i was getting really tired… then the BSSB-at-the-locks concert was followed by the traditional beer-and-pizza-in-walter’s-back-yard, which got me home around 6:00 pm.

i actually tried to take a nap between 7:00 and 7:30 or so, but the doggie-alarm kept going off every time a twig snapped outside, until moe got home around 8:00. i finally went to bed at 9:30 and was asleep almost immediately.

i’ve got a ninja concert at the good shepherd center with the fremont philharmonic this evening, and a rehearsal with the sousa band on tuesday, wednesday i have a snake suspenderz rehearsal, and thursday is my “weekend” this week. then i’ve got a gig with snake suspenderz at chumleighland on friday… which has the distinct possibility of leaking over into saturday as well… and possibly another ninja performance with the fremont phil on saturday, then the ballard sunday market on the 14th, and on the 15th is the party that we were hired to do as a result of the sunday market…

and then there’s the “Garden Party” at krissy and chris’ on the 20th, which the fremont phil is probably not playing for in any official capacity, but we’re probably going to be there, and i’m going to bet that we’ll play a little. and then, next month, we’ve already got a two-gigs-in-one-day scheduled, on 18th september, when we’re scheduled for the pike place busker festival and the seattle symphony day of music at beneroya hall…

plus i got an incense order today, for the last of my old tulasi deepak stock, which, because, from what i’ve been able to find out, they don’t make it any longer is another incense that i have carried that nobody else carries…

parade

the parade was a parade…

i was signed on with the SANCApators as a temporary sousaphone player today. i got there with enough time to park my car close to the end of the parade route, and then walked with my sousaphone to the beginning of the parade route, which was a little more than two blocks. the actual parade route was from 34th and raye to 32nd and raye, but we went down 34th to mcgraw, and then down mcgraw to 32nd, and then back up 32nd to raye, so the parade route was about 8 blocks total.

it was supposed to start at 10:30, and i think it actually did start at 10:30, but it was almost noon before we started moving, and it was more like 12:30 by the time we actually “stepped off” and we didn’t finish until around 1:15 or so. i was actually really surprised that i was able to “march” (we weren’t really “marching” so much as “meandering”, but we were actually moving, which is a new experience for me, since my injury) and i actually was able to play most of the music in a more or less satisfactory fashion… and, considering that they were two relatively fast marches (Circus Days and Desert Patrol) i’m pretty satisfied with my performance overall.

The Shaggs!!

because of the fact that i worked the “late night” shift at a local college radio station for three years or so between 1980 and 1984 (KUGS 89.3 FM) i became familiar with a whole bunch of extraordinarily obscure music… stuff like “The Passion and Transfiguration of a Post Apocalyptic Eunuch” by David Snow, “Perfect Lives” by Robert Ashley, “Einstein On The Beach” by Philip Glass, music by The Glass Orchestra, The Nihilist Spasm Band and suchlike…

it is that experience, digging through literally tens of thousands of 33⅓ RPM vinyl albums, that has gone a long way towards forming my musical tastes today…

however there is one group, The Shaggs, that i’ve never quite been able to figure out, although i find their music fascinating… never been able to figure out, that is, until this afternoon, when i came across this video about the early years of The Shaggs at the BBC. now i understand: their music is the result of not being allowed to listen to popular music, until, one day, they were essentially forced to make “popular music” by a father who was obsessed and psychotic… they made a grand total of one album, “The Philosophy of The World”, and broke up upon the death of their father/manager because, as dot said, “it was embarrassing.”

get out there and watch the video now, because the BBC is only putting it up for a short period of time (and i can’t figure out how to download it, which is irritating). fortunately, i’ve got the album in my collection… one of the advantages of having the “late night” shift at a college radio station and having a collection of the weirdest possible music which no-one will notice when it goes “missing” from said radio station… πŸ˜‰

another week closer to the eschaton…

i woke up this morning, and checked my email. i had 4,856 new messages, all with the same subject line, which included the word “MLM”… please stop sending me these messages. they’re not accomplishing what you think they are, they’re really annoying, and i’m about to block your country’s IP addresses because of it. there are better ways of doing… whatever it is that you’re expecting to be able to do by sending out 4,856 spam email messages… 😐

A piece of their mind – they share thoughts… in spite of the fact that they have two sets of eyes, one can “read” what the other is seeing, without actually seeing it… The Fascinating Story of the Twins Who Share Brains, Thoughts, and Senses has more, including a video… fascinating!

The Return of the Stoned Ape – smart people do more drugs because of evolution. now it all makes sense… πŸ˜€ and, while we’re at it, Smart people SLEEP LATE as well… so there!

and now, to more mundane topics…

Fnord33 Conspiracy Theories That Turned Out To Be True – fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord. beware, the paranoids are watching you. fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord fnord.

The Information Super-Sewer: Will the Internet be Hijacked by Corporate Interests – funding a civilization through advertising is like trying to get nutrition by connecting a tube from one’s anus to one’s mouth. also Final nail in coffin for Net neutrality?all 95 house and senate candidates who pledged support for net neutrality lost their races. what does this mean? it means that your unlimited, uncensored, unthrottled and open internet service will be going away as soon as the major corporations that now own internet are going to get to decide how much to charge you for how much access… which means that it won’t be too long before internet will be exactly like television, unless you can afford to make it better.

A Modest Proposal to Republicans: How to Trim the Budget – hint: it’s something that a republican would never think of…

Chomsky: US-led Afghan war, criminal – to date there is no evidence that al-qaeda has carried out the 9/11 attacks, and still we use that as justification to make war on a people who have their own problems.

The Surprising History of Copyright and The Promise of a Post-Copyright World – copyright was never primarily about paying artists for their work, and trying to make it about that now is obfuscating the real reason, which is to make the distributors as much money as possible. copying is not theft, piracy, or anything else illegal, and the sooner we toss the current copyright law fiasco and start over again, the better.

Minnesota Mom Hit With $1.5 Million Fine for Downloading 24 Songs – copying IS NOT theft! (my new mantra).

Bankruptcy of U.S. is β€˜Mathematical Certainty,’ Says Former CEO of Nation’s 10th Largest Bank – yep… the end is coming, and it’s not looking like it’s going to be particularly pretty when it gets here.

Voters Approve Sharia Law Ban – meanwhile, fear, insanity and unreasoned reactionism comes to oklahoma, whether they like it or not… oh well, there are always 49 other states… 😐 meanwhile, it appears that Oklahoma Voters May Have Accidentally Voted Against Ten Commandments, Too – that’s what they get for being stupid and making nonsensical laws without thinking them through.

Details on PayPal’s Site Outage – they have been doing okay, despite the bad things that i continue to hear about them, but they apparently went down for anywhere from two to twenty four hours, depending on where you are, and so far they’ve not released any information other than to say “something broke. it’s fixed now, and we’re sorry.”

Google calls bug bounty hunters to YouTube, Blogger – $3,133.70 a bug seems like a lot, and i seriously doubt that their actual testers get paid anything like that. what this is, really, is an attempt by google to have volunteer “testers” hammer on their technology without having to pay them for doing so. then, when a “tester” discovers something, google can claim that they found it, pay the “tester” a minimal, one time fee and never mention the “tester” to anyone ever again… everybody’s happy, at least temporarily, and the big corporation profits at the expense of the american drone, who doesn’t notice because he’s too busy telling all of his friends how 733T he is… you can’t make a living on it, but it’s the american dream come true… 😐

Seagate squirts out rectal cleaning sprayno shit… πŸ™‚

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words: President Obama Visits Chicago and a Homeless Man Begs Him for Alms – no further comment needed.

Marijuana Legalization: Not If, But When – agreed, it’s just a matter of time, but it’s going to have to be the entire country, or it’s not going to work… and whether or not the entire country legalises it through a revolution or through a civil election still remains to be seen.

New Mother’s (False) Positive Drug Test Leads to Baby’s Removal… Poppy-Seed Bagel the Culprit – the only way to solve problems like this is to legalise all drugs, but if proposition 19 is any indication, even when we’re winning, we’re really losing… and while we’re at it, No reason for pot prohibition – when are we going to get the idea that the war on drugs is a collosal failure? not for the next couple of years, at this rate… 😐

not only that, but A molecular link between the active component of marijuana and Alzheimer’s disease pathology – the active ingredient in cannabis, delta-9-tetrahydracannabinol (THC), competitively inhibits the enzyme acetylcholinesterase (AChE), the key pathological marker of alzheimer’s disease. are we ready to legalise it yet?

Cargo plane bomb plot: passengers to face ‘ludicrous security measures’ – now that we have successfully prevented another terrorist plot from even reaching the country, of course, the logical response is to put more stringent measures in place to insure that innocent citizens are harrassed, poked, prodded, scanned and examined in new and unusual ways, to make sure that the terrorists don’t win again… oh, and by the way, Yemeni mail bombs suspect ‘had identity stolen’ – so we really don’t have any clearer an idea who did it then we did a week ago… swell…

For the First Time, the TSA Meets Resistance – they’re now searching your “crotchal” area, and they really want to get you to use the “Dick-Measuring Device” back-scatter imaging device, so be warned…

Pollution in China – this is why stuff is cheap in america. remember that the next time you buy something.

Obama may let CIA run more β€˜hunter-killer’ teams roam abroad – this is premeditated murder and i question what the real intent is…

Why I don’t voteW? T? F? i can understand a multitude of reasons for not participating in the farce of elections these days, but basing your abstinence in voting on 1 timothy 2.12 is far beyond anything that i could possibly figure out…

McDonald’s furious after San Francisco bans Happy Meals – apparently they didn’t get the memo

Ram Dass Has a Son! – DNA tests confirm it, and ram dass is okay with it, so it doesn’t look like it’s going to cause a major uproar (like it has with other “spiritual” teachers), but it also is pretty much not what you would expect…

dio de los muertos and other gig-related ramblings

tapetei had a gig last sunday, a rehearsal monday and wednesday, another gig yesterday, and a gig today. i get sunday off (because our usual rehearsal space will not be available this week), then i have a rehearsal monday, tuesday and wednesday of next week.sugar skull the gig yesterday was for the dio de los muertos celebration at the seattle art museum. unlike most of the previous banda gozona performances i’ve been to, this one included my camera and i took some really cool photos, not all of which are related to dio de los muertos. but most of them are… the gig today is the ballard sedentary sousa band’s “Sousa Bash” for john philip sousa’s birthday. unlike previous years, when we have had an outsized saxophone and a standing-room-only crowd, or last year, when there was a major storm, the bridge closed, and we had to start a half-hour late because most of the band wasn’t there, this year promises to be relatively tame… although that was said before the performance, and a lot could change between now and 6:00 pm. the philharmonic is into full rehearsal mode for the december panto, which has been extended to four weeks this year.

busy busy busy…

this is one of my five all-time favourite songs

I Don’t Work For A Living – Malcolm Dalglish & Grey Larsen

I don’t work for a living,
I get along alright without,
I don’t toil all day,
I suppose it’s because I’m not built that way.
Some people work for love,
And say it’s all sunshine and gain,
But if I can’t get sunshine without any work,
I’d rather stay out in the rain.

Give me a nail and a hammer,
And a picture to hang on the wall,
Give me a strong stepladder,
So that I won’t fall,
Give me a bottle of whiskey,
And a barrel of Strong’s best ale,
And I bet you I’ll hang up that picture
If somebody drives the nail.

this is from their 1978 album The First of Autumn, which i first heard at my friend deirdre’s house in 1980 or there abouts, and it very quickly became the song that inspired my life. at this point, thanks to my brain injury, i can honestly say that it’s pretty much true, too. πŸ™‚

another week closer to the eschaton…

The City That Ended HungerBuckminster Fuller said that we, as a people, have posessed the technology for 50 years (and he said this almost 50 years ago) to create a world where nobody has to work to survive. Why Bother Working At A Job You Hate? and The RICH Economy are my attempts at changing the world’s consciousness, but it may be that Belo Horizonte, brazil’s fourth largest city, has taken it one step further. brazil has a number of other interesting features upon which i have commented previously.

meanwhile, back in hell america, Building sand castles on Florida’s beaches is illegal – this is how BP is hoping to make you think that the oil spill is gone.

What the TSA isn’t saying about Full Body Scanners and Your Right to Opt Out – Say “I Opt Out.” Every Time. – has an interesting URI – Don’tScan.Us – and is there to remind everyone that, when travelling by air, you have the right to say “I OPT OUT” when confronted with a TSA request to what amounts to a strip search. also Portable, rapid DNA analysis tech developed – Big Brother doesn’t care whether or not you have fingerprints, and is interested in your DNA instead… more orwellian doublethink: Welfare is Employment Rights are Privileges War is Peace Illness is Health Collapse Is Recovery

Judge orders lesbian reinstated to Air Force and yet the congress in it’s infinite wisdom has decided that, even though a judge also ruled that DADT is unconstitutional, they’re not going to do anything to change it at this time. correct me if i’m wrong, but the judge that said that DADT is unconstitutional basically said that it’s against the law for the military to enforce the law as it currently stands, and still, congress feels that it’s okay to leave the law as it stands, right? that settles it, our government, and likely the governments of the countries in the rest of the world as well (since they all cooperate with each other, more or less) is irreparably broken. it’s time for that major shift in the way people think that i’ve mentioned before to actually start happening now…

and, by the way, now there’s Irrefutable Proof the Bush Tax Cuts Were a Miserable Failure – and we’re still losing to these morons…

despite the fact that Yes on Prop 19 Holds Steady Lead, 47%-42%, in Latest SurveyUSA Poll, this is what supporters of prop 19 are up against: Ex-Drug Czar Bill Bennett: Showtime’s β€œWeeds” is β€œDamaging,” Jonas Brothers Should Fight Prop 19 – regardless of whether prop 19 passes or not, however, Federal judge rules Colorado’s medical marijuana law is no defense for US drug charges. california can legalise all it wants, but until the federal government changes its mind, people will still end up going to jail for smoking a joint. and, while we’re at it, T-Mobile Claims Right to Censor Text Messages – big brother just got a little bigger and a little less like your brother.

along the same lines, according to Chapter 69.51A RCW on Medical "marijuana" (which is actually called “cannabis”, but i’m not arguing at this point), apparently i wouldn’t qualify anyway… oh well… 8/

Twitter blames website upgrade for re-introducing XSS holehopefully, the last word on my battle with twitter and their most recent cross-site scripting bug… which is still gone on my machine, but presumably that’s because i deleted my account before this latest round happened, and when they re-introduced it, i didn’t have an account to infect any longer…

twitter… 😐 feh.

Trojan poses as skeleton key jailbreak utility – but it only works on iPhones… wait, what? 8) heh heh heh… i am so glad i’m not a mac-head any longer…

GoDaddy.com Goes on the Auction Block – recently i read a couple of articles detailing how a whole bunch (<200) of wordpress blogs hosted by godaddy got hacked. i don’t know whether selling godaddy will make things better or worse, but it’s one of the reasons why i don’t use godaddy to begin with.

IE captain flees Microsoft for Google – when i was first getting into testing software, back in 1996, i attended a planning meeting in advance of the release of IE3 (which was still crawling with bugs, in spite of bill gates’ claim that micro$not released “bug free” software), and chris wilson was there, although he wasn’t as “important” then as he later became. however giving up micro$hit for google is sort of a lateral move for someone who is allegedly as “important” as he is… and, given that he is ultimately responsible for such travesties as IE4 and IE6, i would think that google would have second thoughts about hiring him…

How do you copy 60 million files? – yet another reason why linux rocks, and you should use it and not that crap operating system from redmond.

Nuclear Winter And Peace – look… another article by Fidel Castro… you might get the impression that he’s actually changed the way he thinks recently, and that i agree with him now…

pubic schools billboardOops! Billboard spelling error creates embarrassment

The true history of the Koran in America – reports of qur’ans in american libraries go back at least to 1683, and the first qur’an to be published in america was in 1806, over 100 years later. both thomas jefferson and john adams owned one and read it frequently… just sayin’…

Pope’s astronomer says he would baptise an alien if it asked him – unfortunately, is not a joke… nor is this: Christian group declares jct 9 on M25 cursed, although it took me several readings to confirm that it was, in fact, totally serious… what?!?

Church of Body Modification – this has been the subject of a bunch of spam messages i have been receiving recently, but it’s a real thing, and it looks fairly interesting…

Fabrican – it gives the reference to “jeans so tight you must have sprayed them on” a whole new meaning…

sickness, music and a dog with wheels

i was sick yesterday, but i went to play with snake suspenderz at the pike place market busker festival which i managed to pull off without too much sickness. playing with two other, respected buskers, howlin’ hobbit and thaddeus spae was only made that much more of an honour for me because the pike place market preseveration and development association (the outfit which licenses buskers at the market) has decided, in their infinite wisdom to ban music played on electronically amplified equipment and… wait for it… brass instruments… which, of course, means that any other time of year, thad and hobbit can busk at the market, but i can’t. where’s the justice in that, ‘eh?

busker festivali wasn’t able to get any relevant pictures of snake suspenderz, since i was playing with them at the time, but i was able to get a picture of the amazingly fearless dog in a wheelie contraption that took the place of his hind legs, which apparently didn’t work all that well. i believe the dog’s name was Rover. most dogs that have encountered my tuba have an almost instinctive fear of it: i don’t even have to play it, but they want to keep about as far away from it as possible. rover was completely different, however, and rolled right up to it and gave it a thorough sniffing… and then rolled away in search of something more interesting. it was as though he hadn’t just encountered the most dog-frightening piece of musical equipment that i own.

i’m feeling a lot better today, and have made up for the fact that i didn’t eat anything at all yesterday, by eating twice as much as i normally do today. it’s kind of weird, because i’m still congested and coughing up wads of green goo, but i’m starving. if i had eaten this much yesterday, i would have been a lot more sick than i was.

i spent a lot of spoons being sick yesterday. i’m definitely feeling better, however i’m not back to normal yet. maybe tomorrow.

i was poking around on the web this afternoon, and i came across these albums that i had back when albums were made of vinyl. Banish Misfortune and The First of Autumn by Malcolm Dalglish and Grey Larsen. i was able to download banish misfortune, but the first of autumn, which has the song “I Don’t work for a Living” on it, which has been one of my five all-time favourite songs ever since i first heard it, is only available as either an LP or a cassette. i have a turntable, but i don’t have an amplifier and the software to turn a LP into something that i can play with modern technology. wait! there’s a CD version of it at malcolm dalglish’s web site. these are albums that i haven’t even heard for 10 or 15 years, and i can still remember how excited i was to find music like this when i first came across them, almost 30 years ago.

fezorocity and antique brass…

salamandir, hobbit, jasonfriday i played linda lee’s open mike at the gypsy trader café with hobbit, and while i was there, i met another open mike musician named marshall who had already finished off one 40-ouncer and was well into his second (he had finished the second and was well into his third by the time it was his turn at the mike) when we came in. he immediately fixed his bleary gaze on me and my tuba, came over, introduced himself, and proceded to gush over my tuba, and how he had a “miniature tuba” that was exactly like mine, which had belonged to his grandfather, which he had determined that i should want to buy, because it was exactly like my tuba, but little. i payed little attention to him, becuase he was drunk and because i always get people raving about my tuba at open mikes anyway, but i gave him my business card and thought no more about it.

it was really nice to play music with hobbit, and it made me realise even more acutely the fact that snake suspenderz has been on far too long a “break” and i’ve got to get back into playing tuba for some band, because i really miss it… and tuba isn’t much of a solo instrument unless you’re The Tuba Man

last night i (#32) went to a fez-up with hobbit (#8) and fez-monger (#13) at the elephant and castle, an upscale “british” pub (although despite the “british” ambience and decor, there wasn’t a single brit in the entire joint) on 5th avenue that has been there for at least 20 years, but i have never been in it before last night. once again, it was great to be out with hobbit and another fez-wearer in public, and the fact that it was the fez-monger himself added honour and prestige to the whole evening, even if i was the only one who noticed it.

i’ve been playing email tag with fez-monger for a week now, and i still can’t figure out where the link to order an “order of the fez” fez is. jason assured me that it was on the order of the fez web site, and he said that he emailed me with the information, but i haven’t received email from him, and the only mention of it that i can find on the order of the fez web site says that you should contact jason at fez-o-rama, and i can’t find anywhere on the fez-o-rama web site that even mentions the “order of the fez” fez. perseverance (or, possibly, perseveration) is key when approaching things like this.

Tenor Hornyesterday, before the fez-up, i got a call from marshall, who was still obsessed with the idea that i wanted to buy his miniature tuba. he gave me enough details about it that i was able to determine that the instrument he had was probably very simlar to this one. he said that it had “engraving” on the bell (which i later determined was actually stamped there, rather than engraved, but i can’t expect him to know the difference) that said “J.W.Pepper, Importer, Philadelphia and Chicago” and that it had a serial number #24320. i determined that it was most likely manufactured around 1910 by John Distin for J.W.Pepper – a company that is still in business. i called him back and asked him if he could send me pictures, but apparently he is not technologically savvy enough to do such a thing, so i made arrangements to meet him today, to take pictures of the horn so that i could do some more research on it.

at 2:00 this afternoon, i met with him on dearborn avenue in seattle, and what he showed me was almost exactly the same as the horn that i picked out on the web, and it looked like it was in pretty good shape, for a 100-year-old silver plated instrument. it had some problems, but none that were not almost immediately overcome-able by a person with a bit of intuition and the correct tools, so i offered him $75 for it, and came away with a pepper tenor horn that is currently in the workshop with penatrating oil soaking through 100 years of corrosion on the tuning slides.

once i get the horn playing (which shouldn’t take too long, because all it really needs is a good cleaning and lubrication, and to have the lead-pipe soldered down where it’s come loose), it’s very likely going to join my menagerie.

dreek

i bought some 1shot clear coat for the hood of my car. it works okay on the black – it does cause it to bleed this interesting brownish red colour, but i can clean that up pretty quickly. on the other hand, when i apply the clear coat to the gold ink, it smears – even totally dry ink – and it takes long enough to clean up that i won’t be able to clear coat the car, at least not before tomorrow, when i have a show in everett for which i’m being paid $100.

i’ve been playing around with a stencil design based on Śrītattvanidhi, but the stencils i have designed so far are too big for the media i have, and while i know that larger media exists, i still haven’t found a source for it. it’s coming really close to the end of the “create an art car in the open with no garage” season really quickly, and i haven’t got more than the hood finished on the car, which is a perennial source of frustration for me. hopefully the newly expanded workshop space will facilitate my attempts to make this a reality.

Renaldo & The Loaf – Hambu Hodo

tah daaah!

hood finished!
finally!

i called maaco, and they said that it would cost around $200 to clear-coat the hood, depending on how the preparation goes. i told the guy that i would hesitate to spend that much on the car if there was something wrong with the engine, and my budget was around $100. he said that i should bring it by tomorrow, which i’m going to do, but i’m not expecting much. it’s possible that rick at edgewood tire has some suggestions, but i haven’t asked him.

i’m probably going to go get my tuba soldered tomorrow afternoon, or some time in the relatively near future.

i sent $500 to india for 20 dozen boxes of aparajita. i got an invoice for it, so i’m a little less suspicious than i would have been otherwise, but i still don’t know for sure that it’s going to be aparajita that the guy sends me. at this point, it’s wait and see, because i’ve already sent the money. there’s another incense retailer that’s going to buy half of the 20 dozen as soon as i get them, which is good, because i don’t have the space to store 20 dozen boxes of incense.

this is not a title

Extraordinary Rendition Bandthe world needs more girl sousaphone players…

my performances at Honk! Fest went off without a hitch, more or less. i got up at an ungodly hour (7:30) and made it to the first performance, at Casa Latina, by 9:00, where they didn’t know what was going on, and my ability to understand spanish is only because of my vague knowledge of french and latin, so i wandered around in the international district for 45 minutes or so until other honk fest/band related people showed up. we played for an hour, and then we had a break until 3:00, so i went and got breakfast and took a nap for an hour or so. the second performance was after the Extraordinary Rendition Band performed. the latino guy that’s standing in the background is someone from my band, and i suppose that i should probably know what his name is, because i’ve known him for a few years now, but i don’t… (is it yeba ignacio? i’m not sure…) i don’t suppose that it’s partially because he only speaks limited english, and i would only make myself look foolish if i tried to speak spanish…

DJ RX – White Lines is an interesting treatment of the song… in a lot of ways, it’s better than the original.

spoons &c.

i subscribe to a modified version of the spoon theory, and the past few weeks have definitely been ones in which i have pushed the limits of my spoons, traded one day’s spoons for another day, and that sort of thing. now that the moisture festival is over for another year, it is important that i rest up and gather my spoons for a spring and summer that looks exciting and frightening at the same time.

i am expanding hybrid elephant in a number of ways: i have gotten at least one and potentially three or more new web clients, which may mean that i’m going to need more web space eventually(!), and i have been talking with bfly about teaming up to teach some classes(!!).

i talked with dan from nanda about printing business cards and postcards for them.

i have also decided, now that moisture festival is out of the way, that i’m going to have my tuba “seen to” by someone that can re-solder the outside guard bracing that’s come loose, replace several missing braces that are currently being held together with zip ties, and tackle the third valve slide that is wider at one end than it is at the other, and is just waiting for me to bump it a little bit too hard in the wrong direction so that it will totally lock up and never move again.

i also have a new art car project to work on. i have every intention of putting all 1008 names of ganesha on my new art car, which, of course, will mean that i will have to write them a lot smaller than i did on the previous art car, which will doubtlessly mean more time spent on it. SACBO is in june, so that doesn’t really leave very much time…

happy Hunt-the-Gowk Day – you tell me…

considering the date today, i can’t tell whether the following products are a joke or not…

at the same time, it would explain a lot about “popular” music these days…

Turd Polisher Pro – a VST plugin for SFX Machine?

MF-401 Auto De-tune – an actual hardware device for your studio, from Moog Music?

makes me wonder what would happen if you pitted one of these against the other? would the result be interesting, or boring? would it create a perpetual motion machine or a time vortex? which one would fail first?

The Man In The Dark Sedan

I’m the man in the dark sedan and I have come to take your hand
I was sent down here to be sincere, truthful and steadfast
I came to say that judgement day of man has come to pass

I’m the man in the dark sedan and I have come to take your hand
You can follow me and I guarantee to take you far away
But we must leave before the eve of everlasting gray

I’m the man in the dark sedan and I have come to take your hand
You will leave this place and soon replace the names of those you know
With a brotherhood that has withstood the leeches and the snow.

i like that word ‘kleep’… it’s sort of like ‘telp’…

so the US copyright lobby is petitioning to put indonesia on the list of potential software pirates, because of the fact that its government supports open source software… if you don’t have your copy of linux and wordpress now, better get it soon, in case the US government decides that open source equals piracy.

i broke down and bought a price gun marker$125 for a little gadget that prints two lines of numbers on a price tag, and is designed to be used at inhuman speeds. presumably it will work, but i won’t be able to find out until after the weekend, because my mother-in-law is visiting for the weekend and her bedroom is also where i store the incense.

i’m playing for the “Vicars & Tarts” party at the palladium tomorrow (yes, we are taking my mother-in-law with us, which should be amusing). i am playing with a whole bunch of musicians i have played with before in various other configurations, but we have never played in this particular configuration, and there’s one guy, colin, who i’ve never played with before. it’s going to be colin on trombone, me on e-flat tuba and greg on b-flat tuba (two tubas! 8) ), roslyn on clarinet, joseph on saxophone, stuart on guitar and a drummer who stuart says i have met before, but i don’t remember who he is.

Continue reading i like that word ‘kleep’… it’s sort of like ‘telp’…

urk, kleep, pumg

i booted up my computer this morning and firefox told me it had an update for one of the addons, so i let it install, instead of starting firefox, it looks like it’s going to start, flashes a white screen for a moment and then crashes with no explanation. tried it a number of times in different ways, and no firefox. so i used another browser (konqueror) and i upgraded firefox (it’s supposed to tell you when there are updates, but it never has for me). now it looks like it’s going to start, flashes a white screen for two and a half moments, and then crashes with no explanation. i updated my software sources and updated my system (something which i haven’t done in about 2 months) and, lo-and-behold, there’s a new firefox in the updates, but it still doesn’t work.

i tried my mac, and it said “oh, look… there’s a firefox update. you want to install it?” to which i answered “yes” and it’s now installed, running, and works fine.

as much as i like linux, there are times when it can be really frustrating. i only hope that bill (my older, brain injured helpdesk client who is also running linux) doesn’t have the same problems i am having.

i tried running firefox from the terminal, and it gives me a whole bunch of UNKNOWN and ABORT errors that probably mean something to someone, but only indicate to me that i’m going to have to dig deeper to get to the source of the problem. 😐

i ran firefox -safe-mode from the terminal, and disabled all of my addons, and firefox started right up. i think it was the thing that looks up the flag of the country where the server lives, but it was a good excuse to dump a whole bunch of themes that i don’t use any longer, and a few addons that i used once and have been hanging around ever since version 2, and that sort of thing.

i got email from my router this morning, which says “TCP Packet – Source:63.245.212.23,54375 Destination:216.162.193.190,8081 – [DOS]”… i don’t know what it means, but judging by the fact that it says “[DOS]” (which i take to mean “Denial Of Service”) and there’s only one of them, i’m not going to worry too much about it. the drizzle guy said that IP space belongs to mozilla, so i am officially not going to worry about it.

regarding the NYC Musical Saw Festival, i actually got email from the Saw Lady, who is, apparently, the motivating force behind the musical saw festival, and i pointed her towards my saw case pictures. she said she’d add my name to the invite list, so that, on the off chance that i’m actually in new york city, and have my saw, i can come to the festival.

monday

mitnick security business cardnow that the second weekend of performances are over, i can catch up on my real life…

while the servers were down, i got a business card in the mail from Mitnick Security Consulting, LLC… yes, that kevin mitnick. in order to get this business card i had to send him, among other things, my IP address and the password to my system. i think it was a pretty good trade, myself.

the performances went really well this week. the only frisson that we had was when stuart wasn’t going to be there for the evening show and he took off taking pam’s music with him, thinking it was his. after a few frantic phone calls and pam playing half of the preshow with charts borrowed from other people, stuart showed up and traded books with pam, and everything worked out grand.

fez-o-ramai’m a little worried, though… now that clayton is playing with us, there’s more of a probability that eben will be able to copy music that jeremy wrote for the phil… music that he has currently said he doesn’t want the phil to play because he’s going through a publishing/copyright thing and doesn’t want to have extra copies of his music in places of which he is not aware.

after the show yesterday, i met up with hobbit, who is number 8 in the order of the fez. he and i (number 32) got together with jason (number 13) who owns Fez-O-Rama and his wife maya, and we spread some fezzerocity through downtown seattle last night… which basically involved meeting at the carousel in westlake mall, getting lost walking up to Von’s (a whiskey bar on 6th and pine) and talking about fezzes, internet, theatre and other stuff until 9:00 or so. i’m sorry to say that i had to borrow a fez from hobbit, because i hadn’t brought mine. also i need to get an “order of the fez” fez some day…

i’ve made some progress on finding a new host provider, but i’m still really mad about the fact that the current one wants to charge me almost 300% more, so i’m going to wait until i’ve calmed down a bit. i’ve found that, since my injury, if i rant about what i’m angry about when i’m angry i end up sounding like a drooling half-wit. besides, i’ve got an appointment with ned that i’ve got to go to now.

fläwmp

the first weekend of alad’din performances are behind me, and i now have a few days free until next week’s performances begin, which will most likely be filled with projects like finishing the insulation on the workshop, working on xmas gifts and other artistic projects, picking up my business cards, doing laundry, washing dishes, random web surfing and hiding out until all of the VEWPRFs are behind me.

saturday’s performances were interesting. there’s definitely a different “feel” about the philharmonic now that stuart’s not an “official” part of it any longer – in spite of the fact that he’s been there for every performance so far. it hasn’t been made plainly obvious what is going to happen with the phil at this point, but the probability that we will be going to OCF this year is still pretty high. whether or not it will be the phil, or another group with many of the same members is still a question. there hasn’t been any talk of changing the name of the group, but it’s very definitely a different group. we’ve got kellan, who is a college student trumpet player who is quite good, but isn’t as sure of himself as some of the more mature band members. on the other end of the spectrum, we’ve got clayton, who is playing euphonium, who is also in the ballard sedentary sousa band, and in la banda gozona (that makes three groups in which clayton and i both play). clayton is also an incredible musician who plays many different instruments in many different bands. i originally met him at the moisture festival a few years ago. he also is part of the fighting instruments of karma. we’ve also got a substitute guitar player, jacque, but he’s only going to be there for one show, and i’m not sure whether he’s actually planning on joining the band on a more permanent basis or not.

i have been playing my saw recently. i decided that i would actually purchase a bow for it, which is a totally different way of playing it than i have been used to in the past. my bow won’t actually be delivered until wednesday, but i have been making do with kiki’s bow, which she’s not using at the moment. with a mallet you get a much more bell-like tone quality and there is more room for error where you strike it than with a bow. as stuart said the other day, using the bow is the most difficult part of playing a stringed instrument as well.

sunday’s performance was a lot better than saturday’s, but there was only one of them, which is probably a good thing for a number of reasons: i was really tired because of two weeks of intensive preparing for a number of different shows, and also it was beginning to snow and i wanted to get home so that i wouldn’t be stuck later on. it turns out that most of the snow melted over night, and it’s actually supposed to be getting warmer over the next few days, so i didn’t go to marysville to get my musical instrument repair business cards from troy yesterday after the show, but i will probably go pick them up within the next two or three days. it was really amazing to have clayton playing the trombone/euphonium parts for songs that haven’t had them since jeremy and fred left the band.

once again, i am performing on new years’ eve in tacoma for the most money i have ever made in my life. thad & ada are getting married on new years’ day.

snake suspenderz at the gage academy of art

salamandir at the drawing jamlast night snake suspenderz played for the models at the gage academy of art’s 10th annual drawing jam. this was my second year at the drawing jam, but snake suspenderz has been there for five years, and “sketch” – our drummer – was an artist who wanted to “sit in” with the group at the drawing jam. a few years ago, snake suspenderz and the klez kats were sharing a set (as we did last night, because thad – our trombone player – is also the trombone player for the klez kats) and “sketch” was in the room drawing. when the klez kats drummer took a break, “sketch” asked if he could sit in with the suspenderz, and never left… in fact, last night, when our set was finished, “sketch” was off to find a room with still life models, or something like that. as we were putting our instruments away when we were done, i was presented with the picture at the right, which was drawn by Pat Haase – [email protected] – which was drawn instead of drawing the luscious naked model i was ogling instead of reading the music… weird… πŸ˜‰

i’ve got another gig this afternoon at the phinney ridge neighbourhood center with the ballard sedentary sousa band. the weather is looking particularly frightful, and the weather report was predicting snow yesterday, which didn’t happen… but today looks even more frightful than yesterday, so the probability is high that i will be driving around in the snow before the day is through.

mump & stuff…

Samuel Langhorne Clemens (Mark Twain) was born on Nov. 30, 1835, in Florida, Missouri. my ancestors from that time period were from the area around knob noster, missouri which is about 150 miles southwest of florida.

whoopie…

in spite of my desire to avoid the news in general, sometimes it slams you in the face and forces you to pay attention. this happened 20 minutes away from my house, but after a similar incident in seattle not too long ago, which put the whole state in an uproar, as though the two apparently unrelated events were cause and effect. my personal opinion is that there are very good reasons to get that angry with police officers in general, and they are not “completely innocent” regardless of how good they seem to be from time to time, but if nothing else these kinds of things are further indications that the world is, in fact, going to hell in a hand basket and there’s nothing that any of us, as individuals, can do about it except to sit back and watch in horror. of course, as a society we could do something about it, and there’s always that chance, but i don’t hold out much hope that we’re all going to be able to, literally, change our minds about so many things all at once. some of us could, there is no doubt, but getting most, if not all people to just change their minds like that is almost impossible. i’ve been told, by people i trust, that it’s going to get decidedly worse before it has a hope of getting any better at all, and that’s the primary reason that i simply don’t pay attention to the news most of the time. it’s not that i don’t care, it’s that i’d rather spend my time thinking about more positive things.

i have a rehearsal tonight, a rehearsal tomorrow, a rehearsal wednesday, a rehearsal thursday, the lenin lighting at the center of the universe (except that music will be provided by the Fremont Philharmonic, not the yellow hat band) on friday, the drawing jam at the gage academy on saturday and a free day sunday. then it’s the same thing again except that there’s also a free day a week from friday and an acupuncture appointment followed by two performances of alad’din a week from saturday and another one a week from sunday. my guess is that it’s going to be a couple of weeks of carefully conserving and spending spoons, otherwise there’s likely to be a meltdown before then.

taking it easy… for a change.

after the combined stresses of having my web server go down and the IPv6 fiasco on my local computer, i was feeling pretty wound up yesterday, but i’ve found that going to a gig with la banda gozona and playing some really difficult but energetic, challenging and fun music on my trombone (i’ve switched to trombone from sousaphone, becase another reliable sousaphone player showed up, and memo wants to “shame” the other trombone player into actually playing the written notes more of the time, especially during performances where he has a tendency to “take a solo” at inappropriate times), along with fixing the direct cause of that stress, would appear to be exactly the right thing to do to alleviate said stress. the result being that i feel more relaxed this morning than i have in a long time. my computers are working, i actually got an incense order during the time that the local computer was down, business is doing well, i’m playing a lot of music with a whole bunch of different groups, i’m caught up enough with the projects that have been on hold for 4 years because of a lack of workshop space, that now i’m coming up with new project ideas and thinking of things i can make for people as gifts. also, there’s a clarinet needing repair that appeared on freecycle, so i’m going to pick it up this afternoon, fix it, and freecycle it to some other deserving person.

and, to make matters worse, i’ve found a PDF-scanned “DIY” book from the early ’70s that has a whole bunch of ideas for simple, cheap, portable living spaces that fit right in with the dome project fantasy that i’ve been playing with ever since i got back from burning man last year for a long time. maybe it’s time to start actualizing some of this fantasy play… 8)

this is a really strange place in which to find myself… i’ve always had this… not fear, although it amounts to the same thing… of fantasies, because deep down, i know that they are fantasies, and fantasies don’t exist in reality. but i’ve been playing around with the philosophical idea that opposites are an illusion for a while now, so maybe it’s time to try seeing what it would be like to actually make my fantastic ideas into real things.

snakes! eye luvvum!

i don’t understand my snake. he eats three medium adult mice about every six weeks or so, except that recently he’s been acting like he’s hungry (trying to find a way out of his enclosure, “hunting” behaviour, hissing and rattling his tail, that sort of thing), but when i put a mouse in his enclosure, he ignores it.

two cycles ago, i put a mouse in his enclosure, he ignored it, i took it out two days later and returned it to the snake-food store, returned it to him about two weeks later and it disappeared almost immediately, along with its two helpers.

yes, i name the mice i feed to my snake. is that wrong? i name them “Breakfast”, “Dinner” and “Tasty Snack”… is that wrong? and in spite of the fact that moe is responsible for us having the snake to begin with, she’s a vegetarian (as well as a veterinarian) and she doesn’t do well with the fact that the snake eats live mice. of course he eats live mice. what would you expect him to eat? those frozen things that the snake-food store sells to people who have snakes bred and raised in captivity? this is a wild-caught snake, and he doesn’t go for that sort of thing… oh well…

the last time, i gave him “Breakfast” and he ignored it for 2 days before he got around to eating it – imagine two days trapped in an enclosure with something which wants to eat you, but hasn’t decided when… yet… it made me feel a little guilty, but the snake ate the mice in the end, so i didn’t feel that guilty.

but this time, he ignored the mouse for 2 days and i finally gave up and “rescued” him. i plan on taking the mice (i bought 3 of them) back to the snake-food store this morning on my way to rehearsal – “hi, i bought three mice from you the other day and now i’d like to return them. my snake just wasn’t hungry”… 8/

we’ve had the snake – a sonoran rat snake named Agador – for 11 years, and he was anywhere from two to five years old when we obtained him. he was wild-caught by someone in eastern washington and kept as a “classroom pet” for a year before we got him, so it’s sort of a miracle that he’s even still alive at this point, but then all of our pets are geriatric, and if anybody takes good enough care of their pets to make them far outlive any of their contemporaries, monique is that person. all i can do is keep trying to feed him and hope for the best.

in other news, i had a performance in burien for the night of 1000 pumpkins last sunday, last monday and wednesday rehearsals for alad’din, a performance last thursday at the seattle art museum, a performance with the ballard sedentary sousa band on friday, 6 november, monday alad’din rehearsal, today i’ve got a snake suspenderz rehearsal in preparation for a performance on thursday, tomorrow i have a veterans day performance in bothell and an evening rehearsal for alad’din, and friday i get poked with needles by chris. on top of that, i fixed a clarinet and brought in another clarinet which i will fix tomorrow, i’ve completed two jewelry projects and prepared to tackle two or three more in the next week or so, and i’ve added a new section to my web site. i’ve been a spoon-spending bandit and i’m hoping things are going to calm down a little for a while so i can build up a new supply of spoons for the holiday.

progress…?

insulation & pegboardi’ve accomplished about as much as is possible for me to do without help… and possibly a ladder. the insulation is left over from an igloo stage-prop that was a part of a movie that jeremy was a part of producing last year, before i went to burning man. he wrote a message to cirquechat saying that he had this “dome” that needed to be got rid of, and it sort of fit into my fantasy of what a dome should be, so i said i wanted it. but when it was delivered, i discovered that it was not very substantial, being made of quarter-inch plywood and foam insulation, so i stowed it under a huge blue tarp at the bottom of our property and used it for projects like insulation for windows, knowing that eventually i would have a project like this to use the rest of it. now i intend to cover the bottom half of the insulated wall with sheetrock (which is just out of camera range on the right side of the photo) and the top half with pegboard. i came home from home depot the other day with two 4×8 sheets of pegboard, and i realised that i have never had this much pegboard – with a purpose – in my entire life.

in other news, i installed gucharmap yesterday, and when i rebooted, apparently my operating system decided that instead of running KDE, it was really set up to run gnome by default. which, of course, meant that when i rebooted this morning, instead of loading my pretty, shiny KDE desktop, it loaded the red, drab, default gnome desktop, and gave me an error message that said “The panel encountered a problem while loading OAFIID: GNOME_FastUserSwitchApplet. Do you want to delete the applet from your configuration”. after a good deal of whinging and complaining, and a good deal of forum perusing, and a little bit of inginuity, i discovered that i could disable automatic login and change my session back to KDE, whereupon everything went back to the way i expected it to be.

also, stuart has decided that he’s not going to play with the fremont philharmonic any longer. i don’t know what that means in the short run, considering that we’ve got trolloween and december performances of alladin, but it means a substantial change in the phil, and potentially the end of the phil all together. pam has said that if she has the choice of performing with the phil for no money, or going hiking, that she’s going to choose hiking. ted hasn’t been showing up very regularly for about a year, and katharine just had a baby, so there’s no guarantee that he’s going to be any more consistent in the short run. joseph just quit the phil as well, about a month ago. that leaves myself, sasha, kiki, and possibly kim, and i don’t know how much any of those people – myself included – want to be involved with building a new fremont philharmonic, especially since we’ve got a huge repertoire, for which we would have to come up with all the parts, or start all over from scratch. it also affects my participation in things like the moisture festival, OCF and the fremont solstice parade. i’m stereotypically worried, but there isn’t much i can do about it at this point, because, although stuart says he’s discussed his decision with simon (the founding clown of the fremont players), macque isn’t even back from burning man yet, and i haven’t even talked to the other members of the band… but i’m stereotypically worried anyway. i hate to think that my ability to attend OCF (for example) could be affected by stuart’s quitting the band, but there it is, and at this point, there’s nothing i can do about it.

Metal Machine Music

a long time ago i heard of this album by lou reed called “Metal Machine Music” which was supposedly so horribly offensive to the ears that the company had to quit making albums because so many people had returned them. of course, being who i am, i was tremendously interested in hearing this gawd-awful piece of noise for myself, but at the time, there were no copies, nobody had it on tape or CD and mp3s hadn’t been invented yet, so i was out of luck. a good friend of mine had actually heard the album, though, and he had assured me that it wasn’t worth the time i spent trying to find out about it, because it was truly awful, and, because i had faith in this friend’s tastes in music, i took his word for it and gave up trying to find a copy.

that was until last week, when i found a bittorrent of lou reed that included the fateful album. of course i had to download it. i even wasted my good share ratio and only downloaded the albums i wanted instead of downloading the whole thing, because we were going on vacation for a week and i had to shut down my computer during that time. i just got around to listening to it today, and i have to say that, while i understand why most “normal” people wouldn’t find it appealing in the least, i find it really interesting indeed, and i am somewhat disappointed that i gave up so easily. actually, i find it compelling in the same way i find the music of john cage compelling. it’s definitely a classic, and while i can understand that it is the reason lou reed is considered to be the founder of heavy metal music, i also find that this particular piece bears a striking resemblence to karlheinz stockhausen, charles amirkhanian or luciano berio.

Metal Machine Music by Lou Reed – it’s worth a listen, regardless of what your friends who normally have excellent taste in music might say.

but is it music?

from kiki the hood, human theremin, comes the question “but is it music?” to which i respond with the classic john cage quote “which is more musical: the sound of a truck driving past a gravel quarry or the sound of a truck driving past a music school?”

only these guys did it with a tractor:

coming to the end of another moisture festival

i met ukulele dick at the moisture festival the other day. his “real name”, acording to his schtick, is Banjo Penis. i traded him a copy of serpentine for a copy of his ukulele dick cd and a copy of his “Dick Dujour” cd, Music to Scare Children by. i’ve been listening to them on and off throughout the day, and i must say, the guy is more than just a ukulele player. i also made buttons for him that say “Act Dorky, Live Forever”. i’ve got performances on friday and sunday for sure, and possibly saturday.

the big news, or maybe not so big if you hang out with the right people, i guess, is that circus contraption is breaking up. i have no idea why, but i can imagine, as with most artistic organisations like that, that there were some artistic differences somewhere along the lines.

other news: my SSDI hearing is the 24th. i’m approaching it with an interesting mixture of hilarity and dread. i got to see part of the forms ned was filling out earlier in the week, and he said about 10 things, of which i would think that 1 of which should be enough to get me on the “disabled” list in a perfect world, but because of the fact that the world is decidedly imperfect, i don’t know if it will help or not. we’re going to work on it some more after the moisture festival is over.

also i’m getting ready to be able to accept credit cards on hybrid elephant, but i’ve only gotten one order since i went live with the new site, so i’m wondering if i can’t put it off for another month until i get more of an idea about whether or not people are going to notice it.

despite the fact that i won the battle of the computer in record time – this time – i learned a bunch of things that i didn’t know in the process. the main thing i learned is that the intermittent quiet scratching noise coming from the computer is the power supply fan, which, instead of turning on and doing what it is supposed to do when power is applied, in fact, it rotates weakly, not anywhere near fast enough to be anything like the heat sink that it’s supposed to be, and intermittently emits a scratching sound that makes me think that it, too, is not long for this world.

chautaqua elephant

i played in the Fighting Instruments of Karma Marching Chamber Band/Orchestra in the benefit show for the New Old-Time Chautaqua this afternoon. it’s a mass conflagration of incestuous artistic talent with which i have been associated on the edges of for the past 30 years or so: i play with eben, bernice, clayton and liz in the ballard sedentary sousa band, i’ve played music with stephan, kevin and karl from bellingham in a variety of groups since i was in college, i currently play with thad in snake suspenderz, i’ve played with heather in the fremont phil… the chautaqua has been described as a karass, which is, in fact, a very apt description. but i never realised how intimately involved i was with it until today, when i saw how many of my friends were all gathered together to do God’s will.

in other news, i finally got the problems that i’ve been having with Hybrid Elephant fixed. they weren’t serious or visible problems (the graphics were showing up in the store, but not in the admin part), but they were a concern, especially if i end up switching host providers again, which is not out of the question. as much as i was raving about 1&1 when i first signed up with them, they have pulled a slimy, underhanded move that makes me wonder how they stay in business: they pulled a “bait and switch” move where i thought i was signing up for a $10.00 a month deal with no monthly contract, and in reality i was signing up for a $20.00 a month deal with a $50 rebate, and a 6 month contract. furthermore, i’ve discovered a host service which actually charges $7 a month, and has unlimited disk space, bandwidth, and SQL databases. of course 300 GB is a lot, but there’s a big difference between 300 GB and unlimited, especially when they’re actually going to charge me less than 1&1 said they were going to charge me. so i’m going to wait until my 6 month contract is up, and then switch host providers again.