Archive for 2005-09

Holiday Tour 2005

02005-09-28 @ 16:09

Added a date in Toronto on November 23rd and a date near the end of the tour in Denver on December 22nd.

Direct

02005-09-28 @ 14:09

Music: Steve Stephen unreleased music

Well, we just accepted 2 offers for my Solo show next year. Both in April, I think, both on the Westcoast. Interesting. Ottmar Liebert: an evening of solo guitar + conversation – or something like that. What a trip! I’ll talk more in that first show than I have said on stage in the last 15 years combined. We might be unleashing a monster that is best left caged, eh?

This thought had me laughing this evening: maybe I’ll be performing de-constructed 21st century folk music, singer-song-writer stuff… only, instead of hearing a set of songs, you’ll get half a set of music and then half a set of words. How modern!

Scent

02005-09-28 @ 10:09

I am always amazed at how our nose/brain connection works… we forget a smell after a few minutes. Only to experience it brand new and fresh later. I am always struck by the amazing scent of the desert after the rain. It knocks me down every single time.

Forget-me-not flowers received their name because they are unique in that their scent triggers an on/off switch in our brain… 2 minutes on, followed by 2 minutes off, then 2 minutes on etc…

Visions of Science

02005-09-28 @ 08:09

BBC News | In pictures | Visions of Science
6

Thanks Eric N.

Crooked

02005-09-28 @ 07:09

Haiku: Translation and Calligraphy by Brother David Steindl-Rast

Intention

02005-09-27 @ 13:09

David’s Journal: Current

This unconscious flow and intention, which I know from experience, can be used to write songs, for example, without any conscious sense of what they are about – but then in retrospect they all seem, or the subject seems (sometimes) glaringly clear and obvious – as if, on looking backwards, one can see the connections, and trace a line of presumed intention. Which does NOT mean the intention was not there in the first place – it was merely unconscious, invisible to the creator – mercifully so. Playing Monday morning quarterback on one’s own work, it then becomes hard to believe that there was never that conscious intention to begin with – hard to believe that it was hidden from the creator but subtly guided the hand and heart – and the creative decision-making process – but I think it’s true.

Very true. And, we always lose when we try to force a song that wants to be a ballad into becoming something else. Funny thing, creativity. A flow, a current. Something one can surf or ride, but never really control. If we are good surfers of the creative current it may seem like we are in control, but we are simply following the wave, not controlling it.

It’s Just Us

02005-09-27 @ 11:09

‘This whole planet is just us,’ the 70-year-old exiled monk said Sunday. ‘Therefore, destruction of another area essentially is destruction of yourself.’
(via The Buddhist Blog)

Brain:Mind

02005-09-26 @ 15:09

Awareness flows, never stands still. In Zen we sit still, but we don’t concentrate. It makes us aware of the nature of our mind, which flows and jumps and flies like a butterfly, not a bird – that is, rarely in a straight line. Our brain connects imaginary dots, creates comparisons and preferences in a constant stream. Sometimes the flow stops for a moment and that moment can seem like an eternity. But, the flow will start up again – or I am brain-dead…

I read that it is unhealthy to sit at a desk, that our body needs to keep moving, adjusting its posture. In fact it is healthier to stand in front of your desk, because it allows the body to constantly adjust. Our brain is very similar, I think. Rather than forcing it to be still by concentrating, we observe it and let it go. By allowing it to function we are rewarded with moments of true silence.

Blogging the Blogging

02005-09-26 @ 15:09

Great Blogs #1: Ottmar Liebert

I’ve decided to launch a new series of posts about some of my favorite blogs, plus examples of interesting and well-designed blogs I come across. One such blog belongs to the multi-faceted, Grammy-nominated, platinum-selling (and fellow German) guitarist Ottmar Liebert. His posts are an interesting smorgasbord on music as an art form, his performances, life in the recording studio and the music business. Archives go back as far as 1994. (Yes, I also find that a little hard to believe, but nonetheless, he’s got some good stuff in there.)

From MarleneJaeckel.com (feed)
(Via Feedster Search: ottmar liebert)

Well, of course there was no “blogging” back in 1994, but I traveled with my Apple computer and had a mailing list of fans who would receive regular posts, I mean emails, from me while I was on tour. I was using CompuServe up to the time they were bought by AOL. They had a great international network of local dial-up connections. Thanks for the mention.

giant bunny

02005-09-26 @ 07:09

Ananova – Artists erect giant pink bunny on mountain

An enormous pink bunny has been erected on an Italian mountainside where it will stay for the next 20 years.

I have nothing to add to this.

White on White

02005-09-25 @ 17:09

New photo set on Flickr. Maybe a beautiful album cover. I like the title as well. What would the music be like? Either Flamenco guitar played very slowly in a sea of reverb… or maybe the new ambient album Jon and I are planing to record this winter in one evening… t-one: white on white

iPod thoughts

02005-09-24 @ 22:09

Music: Tears in the Rain

Technology shapes and inspires art. Bjork has talked about how listening to music on her computer influenced the album Medulla. She mentioned that little sounds become big when listening with headphones.

Over the past couple of years I have probably spent as much or more time listening to music on my iPod than on my stereo system. I think Tears in the Rain has a lot to do with that. I find that listening with headphones makes the music more intimate. One enters the space of the music, rather than having the music transformed by one’s own space. Listening with headphones the mind easily slips into the architecture of the sound rather than experiencing the sound of the music shaped by the architecture of the listening room.

New E-Solex

02005-09-24 @ 18:09

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Design group Pininfarina has released a picture of the new “e-Solex” and re-imagining of the classic moped that they have designed for Cible Group, the French company who bought up the Solex brand from Magneti Marelli. It has an electric engine, disc brakes and front suspensions. It can reach speeds of 35 Km/h (around 21 mph).
from luxist.com

Ah, Solex, what a classic. You had it made if you could afford a Solex in my highschool. Here are a bunch of links: USA, Holland, England, France, and Germany.

Music Biz

02005-09-24 @ 18:09

Slashdot | Music Exec Fires Back At Apple CEO

Warner Music Group CEO, Edgar Bronfman Jr., has fired back at Steve Jobs in response to the Apple CEO’s claim that having variable pricing for iTunes music would be ‘greedy.’ From the article: ‘To have only one price point is not fair to our artists, and I dare say not appropriate to consumers. The market should decide, not a single retailer … Some songs should be $0.99 and some songs should be more. I don’t want to give anyone the impression that $0.99 is a thing of the past … We are selling our songs through iPod, but we don’t have a share of iPod’s revenue … We want to share in those revenue streams. We have to get out of the mindset that our content has promotional value only.’

I think Mr. Seagram Jr. means that the record companies sell their music through the iTunes Music Store and that he wants a cut from ech iPod sold – yeah right! Within a short while this comment popped up:

Edgar Bronfman, Jr. does not know a lot of things. He inherited the Seagram fortune, sold its $9 Billion stock of Dupont to buy MCA, for the sole purpose of becoming a media mogul. He’s failed miserably. Here’s a great article about him on Slate [msn.com]. I especially like this quote, “Edgar Jr. has been designated the movie industry’s official idiot–a 42-year-old child who’s squandering his family (and his shareholders’) fortune on romantic Tinseltown fantasies.”

Don’t think he speaks for the entertainment industry; he’s an idiot even among those morons.

Ouch! And then this clever tongue in cheek comment:

I also suggest speakerwire be taxed per foot, since the longer the cables, the bigger the room and thus the more people can listen at the same time.

Saturday Morning Pt.2

02005-09-24 @ 12:09

Visited Santa Fe luthier Keith Vizcarra, who is experimenting with brace-less guitar tops. Can’t wait to hear what the guitars sound like when he is done.

Then I went by a feed-store that had the kind of water-tanks/rain-catchers Upaya uses, and rounded the morning off with a visit to my brother’s show at Counter Culture..
IMG_3550.JPG

Saturday Morning

02005-09-24 @ 10:09


I have never been to Portugal, but I have often wanted to visit the country, and especially Lisbon. I found this beautiful photo on Flickr this morning. I want to record some guitar pieces in the lighthouse!

Will visit the Counter Culture cafe on Baca Street this morning. They are showing some photos my brother took.

I will leave on Thursday for a few weeks in Italy. In fact I am going to have to pack – have I mentioned I hate packing – this weekend because I will ship a guitar and luggage via FedEx on Monday. No rushing through endless hallways with luggage to make the connection for me this time. Travel very light – and ship the rest…

I don’t know how often I will be able to post from Italy. I might end up using MARS (What? still no title-support for Blogger in MARS!?!?) to write and will post when I can get a connection, but no later than the last weekend of October.

Tears in the Rain

02005-09-24 @ 09:09

From an email regarding Tears in the Rain:

In this music there are pauses that are very poetic and at the same time very emotional.

Thank you, that’s one of my favorite compliments. A pause in music is the same as white space on a canvas. Japanese music more than any other music utilizes that space. Most traditional Japanese music does not have a specific meter or pulse running through it. Spaces are notated as such and do not have a specific length. Space or silence is considered just as creative an expression as sound. Actually, I think space is harder to create – it seems to require more experience.

I listened to the six pieces in the Tears in the Rain album this morning and I love what I hear. It sounds bare, exposed, personal, tender, but also strong and confident. I have wanted to do improvisations like this for a long time, but something was missing before and so it remained private until now. I feel that there is more about me in these six pieces than in all my previous albums combined. Or maybe I should say that it is a very different POV of that arbitrary collection of experience and preference that makes up OL.

In case you are new to this Diary – Tears in the Rain is a work in progress, a collection of solo guitar pieces available only from our ListeningLounge. I have recorded six pieces so far and upload them as they are created, without EQ or compression.

Winter Solstice

02005-09-23 @ 18:09

Winter Solstice Traditions

Roman masters feasted with slaves, who were given the freedom to do and say what they liked (the medieval custom of all the inhabitants of the manor, including servants and lords alike, sitting down together for a great Christmas feast, came from this tradition). A Mock King was appointed to take charge of the revels (the Lord of Misrule of medieval Christmas festivities had his origin here).

Tears in the Rain

02005-09-23 @ 11:09

From Matt Callahan:

I had originally thought about adding the Mindbell between tracks to provide some room for a breath or two before moving to the next song. Now I think the sound of rain or even running water would be nice to go along with the title concept. Something faint enough that you really need to listen to hear it.

Each person could add the sounds independently. Some may not care for it at all and some may only want the addition between certain tracks. To me, this sort of flows with the idea of creating your own CD case or storage box. Any thoughts? Do you have sound files similar to this already on hand that could be added to the Lounge?

Interesting concept. Garnish or condiment??
No matter, I shall rummage through my files and look for more bells, rain and water. More building blocks for a very unique CD you can make yourself, if you like.

This would make a great gift for a friend, I think. There is the basic music I have recorded, the field sounds I will also supply, and then there are the precious ingredients of your own thought, creativity and care – downloading the music, possibly adding some field sounds here and there, burning a CD, creating a container. That’s not just a store-bought CD in a wrapper with a post-it note that says Happy Birthday

Supermodels

02005-09-23 @ 11:09

Thanks to a certain supermodel, cocaine is a hot topic this week. Here one of Britain’s leading artists explains why she, for one, can’t stand the stuff.

Yes, well put. I never enjoyed the vibe of people who did cocaine, therefore never tried it myself.

 


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