Archive for 1996-10

Tetris

01996-10-16 @ 16:10

i am sitting in a hotel room in Kansas City… the concert in St.Louis was cancelled and we are on our way to Boulder, Colorado… while riding the tourbus from Atlanta to Kansas City i achieved a new high-score on the Gameboy version of TETRIS: 610,063 points!!!! could this be a world record? has anybody ever had a higher score??? inquiring minds want to know… a little after midnight we will set out for Boulder which we hope to reach by tomorrow afternoon, then Thursday evening off, Friday off and the last show of this tour on Saturday evening…

Date: Mon, 20 Jan 1997 15:24:53 -0600
Mime-Version: 1.0
To: lunanegra@nets.com
From: Nintendo Nintendo
Subject: TETRIS/GameBoy -Reply

Hi there.

It’s the highest one that I’ve ever heard of, but since we don’t keep track of high scores, I can’t tell you if it’s the highest ever.

Nintendo of America Inc.
Jerry Casper

Atlanta, GA – how to get a room

01996-10-14 @ 16:10

a day off… i wake up on the bus in front of the hotel in Atlanta… i find Bondo in the hotel lobby, his hair ascew (aka “bushead”), wearing black shorts and one of his three Oakland Raiders “Hostetler” shirts… he sits in the lobby, waiting for our rooms to be ready, drinking coffee and reading McNews (USA Today)… i ask him how he always gets our rooms so early – often between 8 and 9 am!!! “A good Production Manager has lotsa tricks”, he says, sipping coffee, “I saw this guy on a tour once who was waiting for his room at a very nice hotel in New York. The receptionist had told him his room wasn’t ready yet and he waited a while and then, when the rooms were still not ready, he walked up to the reception, took his shoe of and put it on the desk. The receptionist looked up and the guy asked wether the room was ready. The answer was no, and he then took off the other shoe and placed it next to the first one. Next the socks came off one by one and the guy declared that the rest would come off as well, if he didn’t get his room key right away.” wow, that’s determination…what happened, Bondo? “Take a wild guess” Bondo says and unfolds the sports section of McNews…

it’s our first cold fall day here in Atlanta… i practise guitar and work on a couple of new pieces for tomorrow night, since we have done the “Opium” show in Atlanta already in April…

Jacksonville, FL

01996-10-13 @ 16:10

the Florida Theater is our first headlining show since Greece… luckily we get a long soundcheck and can rehearse all the pieces we haven’t played in all the weeks with Santana… tonight i get to use the Midi guitar again…

Jon and i go for lunch to the nearby Riverside Mall and end up searching for a relatively quiet corner where we don’t have to hear the loud music that fills the mall, courtesy of a country music radio station and a P.A. system set up on a stage… why do they force this loud music on everybody… why is our world getting so unbelievably noisy… speaking of noisy, last night we measured the ambient noise on the bus – just the sound of the engine and air conditioning, no music and no talking… Patch guessed that the bus noise was around 45 decibel loud, and i guessed it was around 65 decibel… i pulled out my trusty Radio Shack meter and the noise was in fact around 74 decibel on the “C” scale, 69 decibel on the “A” scale… pretty loud!

we have laws against smoking in many workplaces, restaurants and public places… hm, what about noise abuse?… i mean of course laws aren’t the answer because they would probably police anybody having a little fun singing along to a tune in a car with an open window… i’m just talking about an awareness of the dangerous aspects of noise… and that starts with people designing and manufacturing machines, lawn mowers, trash blowers, cars, trucks and of course buses, and ends with us choosing not to have load music in so many public places… peace

Santana Tour Report #32

01996-10-12 @ 16:10

Sunrise, Florida: our last day on the Santana tour… we have printed up special black crew t-shirts and swag (free t-shirts) all of Santana’s crew – as is customary… my crew is a little disappointed that they don’t receive any Santana swag in return, this being the FIRST time in over 5 years that the swagging wasn’t reciprocated… during our last set i am having problems with the monitors and i can’t tell wether i am simply going deaf from playing with Santana or wether there is a technical problem… but, we finish the show to a standing ovation… then the last sitting-in with Santana… we’ll miss those guys… the whole band are great musicians… from the great Chester on keyboards to Raul on congas, Karl on timbales, and of course Carlos, all of them very nice people… and we’ll miss all the people that dance at Carlos’ shows, but that’s why it will be fun to tour with LUNA NEGRA XL, the rhumba-phonic, flamenc-o-matic dance band, next year…

Santana Tour Report #31

01996-10-11 @ 16:10

Sunrise, Florida: Carlos signs the artwork of the Santana band’s triple live-LP Lotus, which i received from my parents for Christmas 1973 or ’74, and which was a major inspiration for me, because up to then i had only studied classical guitar…

Santana Tour Report #30

01996-10-08 @ 16:10

Tampa: thought: what is worse than any economic gap is the culture gap.

By morning the rain has stopped, the wind has died down, and the sun peaks from behind clouds. Today’s show is in the Tampa Sundome, a huge, cavernous, echoey building – but filled with a nice audience. we get a standing ovation at the end of our set. the duets with Santana sound great… afterwards we drive to Orlando and find a little pub near a strange Disneyland-like area that appears relatively new, but was built to look old… instahistory… pretty awful, actually… history is messy, one house is built on the ruins of another, not all neat like this… organic growth is never neat… and i mean neat in that clean, Mall-culture Disney sort of way… at least my guys had some good black and tan in the pub and Carl begged until the bartender gave him a free glas of milk for his cereal – ’cause Carl has to eat every couple of hours…

Santana Tour Report #29

01996-10-07 @ 16:10

Tampa, Florida: it’s still raining when i wake up… a hurricane is approaching from the Gulf of Mexico and might strike Tampa sometime tonight or tomorrow… the elevators at the Holiday Inn aren’t working and Jon had to walk down 11 flights of stairs this morning… hm, did i mention there is no air-conditioning in the hotel restaurant or the lobby? how about that the a/c in the room is really, really loud… or that the coffee is really, really bad?

Santana Tour Report #28

01996-10-06 @ 16:10

we leave Houston shortly after 9pm on Saturday evening and arrive in Tampa at 5pm on Sunday afternoon… a very long submarine ride… i finally finish Ken Wilber’s book “A Brief History of Everything” – what a brilliant book…

Carl buys beer holders for everybody at a Texas truckstop… and it rains all the way from Texas to Florida and is still raining now…B ondo, Jon and i take a cab to Hyde Park in Tampa for dinner…

Santana Tour Report #27

01996-10-05 @ 22:10

Houston: it’s raining when i leave the bus @ 8am looking for this venue’s catering and coffee… but the coffee is terrible and i choose Twining’s Earl Grey tea instead… i hear that last night’s show in San Antonio was almost shut down… 5 policemen and a couple of councilmen threatened Santana’s soundman Bruce to turn down the music or have the concert shut down…

hm, 5 cops against 5,000 fans, many of which had visited the Beer tents frequently … in fact, there were lots of guys wearing yellow t-shirts that said “BEER” who delivered beer to all the fans in the stands… that would have been a very realistic fight!!… but, in the end, the sound was turned down and then one angry member of the audience, unhappy with the lack of volume, poured a whole big-gulp of beer into Santana’s mixing console… as a result the drums went silent until they were patched into our mixing board a few minutes later…

hm, the politics of Rock + Roll… seems to me that politicians should stay out of the concerts once they have been approved… we all know that Rock + Roll is loud… if you don’t want the concert, don’t rent the venue to a promoter for a rock band… but don’t allow the concert and then threaten the soundman and almost incite a riot… pretty dumb if ya ask me…

so – it rains all day in Houston, and the humidity is unbelievably high, but we play well, especially considering that the fingers stick to the strings in this humidity and drumsticks somehow want to fly away… one of Carl’s sticks accidentaly flies high into the air and comes straight back down into his hand…

Santana Tour Report #26

01996-10-04 @ 22:10

San Antonio: i wake up at 4am and can’t go back to sleep… from 5 to 7am i go online and read various news items…

a vulcano is erupting under a huge glacier in Iceland… international airtraffic has to be rerouted because a cloud of steam rises up 3 miles in the air… a big flood is expected…

i can finally fall asleep around 8am… another show in Sunken Gardens tonight, then off to Houston…

Santana Tour Report #25

01996-10-03 @ 22:10

San Antonio: it’s a grey, overcast day… we arrive at Sunken Gardens a little after 2pm… a lot of Bamboo has grown near the venue and somebody says that there used to be a Japanese garden years ago… we experience the worst catering on this tour and i end up eating a bagel because dinner looks disgusting… i tell Carlos i saw him in Cologne, Germany, in 1974 with Earth, Wind And Fire as the opening act and that my parents gave me his triple album “Lotus” that christmas… he tells me how big that tour was, the amount of gear they had to take… it must have been quite a nightmare actually… but what a wonderful show!!! btw, we have an offer to play in Mexico in November…

Santana Tour Report #24

01996-10-02 @ 12:10

San Antonio: We arrive around 10AM at the Radison hotel… off again, no show tonight… reading by the swimming pool… thinking… rambling/ranting: you can look at a brain and observe it, but you must talk to a mind and interpret it: you can understand the EVOLUTION of a guitar solo by transcribing the solo and looking at it, analyzing it, determining the rythm of the phrases, determining the scales, the intervals, and comparing it to other solos in history etc… but in order to catch the SPIRIT of the solo you have to listen, you have to feel, you have to interpret the world painted by the melody… you have to STOP analyzing, you have to stop the empirical gaze, shut your eyes and listen… you have to feel instead of thinking… however both appproaches are important to advance one’s understanding of music and of the WORLD… our world is not just EVOLUTION, observation, and the genes you were given at birth, it is equally SPIRIT, interpretation, and growing/learning… society is NOT people governed by laws, simply together… what I mean is this: you can have thousands of rules and laws, but in the end it’s not the rules that keep us from harming one another – we all break one rule or another every week… or in other words: I will treat you fairly, not because i will be punished if i don’t, but because I WANT TO… i will help you, not because i must, but because i want to… the evolution of the guitar solo, its transcription, is the laws and rules that govern society – sbjective and logical… and the interpretation, the spirit of the guitar solo is the morality of society – personal and transpersonal.

Santana Tour Report #23

01996-10-01 @ 22:10

Dallas, Texas: we open the show, then Buddy Guy, then Santana… we leave early, after about 5 minutes of Buddy Guy… off to the Deep Ellum part of Dallas… we park the big white bus on Elm street and wander around until midnight… drinking, playing pool, talking… there isn’t much going on here on this tuesday night, but that’s fine by us… footnote: Carl looses only 3 out of 15 games of pool…

 


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