Archive for 2002-06

Site Santa Fe

02002-06-28 @ 15:06

Visited Santa Fe’s wonderful modern art museum “Site Santa Fe” on Paseo de Peralta this Morning. Of the three artists shown, one stood out I thought. His name is John F. Simon and you can see a few of his pieces online at:

However, seeing them live is much better, because quite a few of the pieces constantly change and evolve. I also enjoyed John Simon’s laser-cut acrylic pieces, which reminded me of old Japanese woodcuts.

Yesterday and today I have been cleaning up our studio which has accumulated a lot of STUFF since opening in 1994. You know what I mean by STUFF – to good to throw away, but hardly ever used and taking up too much space…..
We have sold the Euphonix mixing console, but the Sony 24 track recorder is still taking up space in one of the rooms. Everybody went digital at the same time and there is no market for these wonderful machines. They might become the rage again in another 20 years????
Anyway, I am slowly clearing the big 16 x 4 ft. table in the control room that so many items had accumulated on…..and the studio is starting to look brand new…..


02002-06-26 @ 15:06

Smoke from the big 300,000 acre Arizona fire is filling the sky around Santa Fe. They announced that just breathing the air today is the equivalent of smoking 4-5 packs of cigarettes. The ambient light is so different from the usual brilliance and beauty.

Today I worked on a remix of “2 the Night” and following a whim I patched a cajon performance through a “virtual” Fender Bassman amp with presence and drive cranked up. Wow, it sounded cool!

Gotan Project – La Revancha del Tango

New Cover

02002-06-19 @ 15:06

Idea for Fiesta! cover: Use lots of negative space. Leave a lot of white instead of covering every square inch of the little CD booklet. Possible solution: put Credits and Thank Yous and similar info on our web site…..the only text in the booklet would be the titles of the songs, the author and publishing info and the little legal bit with the copyright information – less than one page of text I would think….Every public library has access to internet and if a person wants to have the information in hand they can always print it out themselves. This might be a cool solution to the dreadfully busy, busy, busy CD booklets…..

Another option might be to encode the info on the CD itself, but then a person would have to insert it into their computer – would that be an advantage or disadvantage? Put info in html form on CD which a person could open with their browser of choice?

New Diary

02002-06-18 @ 15:06

Started a new diary, of course in the middle of the year – writing longhand into a book of unlined pages. Discovered that I prefer pencil over ballpoint pen, rollerpen or fountain pen. Pencil compares to rollerpen as Flamenco guitar compares to synthesizer, that is character over uniformity!? I found myself writing more and enjoying it more.

The dogs are loosing a lot of hair in this Summer-like heat that has hit Santa Fe. Tibetan Mastiffs only shed once a year, towards the end of spring – otherwise they keep their coat. The dogs look quite small after they loose the big winter coat. The hair is soft and many shades of grey. Would make a great rug or wall hanging…

50% chance of rain on Saturday according to, which I visit more often than every before.


02002-06-13 @ 15:06

While I was given a massage this Morning we listened to “In the Arms of Love”… and the music is everything I had hoped for: it creates a little oasis, an dreamy aural landscape. What a wonderful luxury a massage is. Mind drifting to the music, body relaxing and releasing tight muscles.

It is dry in Northern New Mexico. Deer are coming down from the mountain forests into people’s yards and are eating whatever plants they can find there. We collect the water before the shower gets hot in a bucket- usually about a half gallon. We cook pasta or vegetables in plain water without salt or oil so we can water a tree with the water once it has cooled down.

In the evening the wind started blowing smoke from the Pecos fire towards Santa Fe and it smelled so strong that it seemed that the fire should have been in the neighborhood. Smelling smoke is a strange sensation. It seems like thousands of years of human experience has taught us to be alert and worried when we smell smoke. That might make for some interesting dreams tonight.

How dry is it?

02002-06-12 @ 15:06

It is very dry in Santa Fe.
How dry is it?
It is so dry in Santa Fe that when one of my dogs drools hundreds of ants dive onto the spit for a drink!!!

Best of…

02002-06-09 @ 15:06

I noticed that Epic is releasing their “Best of Ottmar Liebert” CD in July. I wish they had asked me or at least let me sequence the album – but they didn’t. I wonder which songs they picked. These “Best of…” collections are so embarrassing…..This will be the third “Best of…” record…(or fourth if you count “The Rumba Collection”)….

Here is the dilemma: almost two years ago I decided to record a new album that would show how some of my songs had grown and changed during the last decade. New parts, new arrangements, new textures and a much better sound quality thanks to new digital recording technology…etc. So I wrote a couple of new songs and picked 10 songs from various albums (basically the period from Nouveau Flamenco to Opium) and recorded new performances. The new “Snakecharmer” for example starts with the intro we play live and has a long ending which also reflects what we do in performances. This new version is beautiful and over 8 minutes long. Similarly we recorded “Barcelona Nights” and added a fourth verse with the horns we had during the Luna Negra XL tour. It sounds fantastic. “Morning Arrival in Goa” was recorded as a Bossa Nova for this album, which is how we performed it in 2001. The chorus is lovely and very uplifting with the Bossa beat and the added horn line. The two new songs are a very happy Bossa Nova and a Cuban-Flamenco sounding piece.

What to do now? I had hoped to release this album, named “Fiesta!” this Fall, but does that make sense after Higher Octave released two “Best of…” CDs of old material in 2001 and Epic Records will release yet another “Best of…” CD this Summer? Granted, “Fiesta!” is a brand-new recording that sounds fantastic compared to the rehashed “Best of…” albums, but might it be seen as yet another compilation?

In favor of “Fiesta!”: new recording of great new performances, innovative new arrangements… two new compositions…great new digital sound…classical musicians constantly re-record compositions – as do Jazz musicians playing “”standards” – why shouldn’t we…new recording captures the growth of the songs after a decade of performing them hundreds of times…

Against “Fiesta!”: might be perceived as rehashing old material…standing still and no longer innovating (innovation for innovation’s sake is boring anyway)…OL has writing block and records old songs…even if this recording contains all new performances, new solos and many new parts, do people want to hear a familiar melody or do they want to hear a new melody…

An what are the options? Do I wait with the release until next year? Or even longer? Do I write and record more new songs and then divide “Fiesta!” over two albums, each with 5 new recordings of old songs and maybe 6 or 7 new songs?

My gut feeling: release “Fiesta!” and let the chips fall where they may, then write and record an album with all new material sometime next year….but I am unsure…

Let me know how you feel about my dilemma:

I wanna see

02002-06-07 @ 15:06


That’s what a fan wrote on our web site. It brought a big smile on my face. Yes, we would love to play in Italy again. Our two week tour of Italy a few years back was so much fun. Maybe next year.

In the Arms of Love – Review

02002-06-05 @ 15:06

Somebody named Terry Wood wrote a rather dumb review of my new album for (I don’t think he liked “Little Wing” either but he obviously gets a kick out of reviewing my music). I don’t think he got “In the Arms of Love” at all, not the ideas, and not the work itself. He writes that the album contains 13 tracks of solo-guitar and that is so far from the truth that I suspect the author is deaf. There is only ONE solo guitar piece on the whole CD, namely “Querencia”. All other pieces contain at least 3-5 guitars and in some cases up to 30 guitar tracks! In addition to the Flamenco guitars there is my fretless luitar, some steel string guitars, electric guitars, synthesizers etc……

(DJM – is that enough vitriol, silliness and salsa?)

New Mexico Fires

02002-06-04 @ 15:06

Currently 6 separate fires are burning on over 50,000 acres in New Mexico. One can smell the smoke in Santa Fe. Sunsets are spectacular because the smoke mixes with the clouds and creates intense colors. Altough no rain was predicted for today we had a lovely light rain shower that lasted about an hour.

Adobe Walls

02002-06-03 @ 15:06

I noticed today that the stucko of a certain house I like in Santa Fe was being re-done. The owners of this house always use the traditional adobe mud stucko with the straw mixed in. This is very beautiful, but work intensive as it needs to be redone almost every year.

It reminded me of different outlooks on architecture and time. The Taos pueblo redoes or patches their stucko every year. It is considered an important communal act for the pueblo. Then there is a temple in Japan that is dismantled and rebuilt so many times every century. It has been standing at the same location for several hundred years. Contrast these two examples with many European buildings that were built out of stone to last at least a few lifetimes. However, many of those stone buildings are now endangered because of pollution. The cathedral in Cologne for example employs a couple of dozen stone masons who are constantly carving sandstone pieces to replace what is being destroyed by acid rain and polluted air.

Choice A: Build with materials that can withstand time. Stone for example.
Choice B: Use “softer” materials and re-build at specific intervals….

The human body uses the renewal method regenerating all of its cells every 7 years.


© Copyright 2019 Ottmar Liebert • Site by Canton Becker • Diary powered by WordPress