Archive for 2007-01

Without Walls

02007-01-31 @ 13:01

Without Walls
Powell believes the increased abuse he’s seen is linked to the growing isolation people have from the natural world. “When people are so disconnected from the natural world, the ability to empathize with anything outside their own epidermis becomes very, very small,” he says. “For me, this raised a very red flag. It said that we are doing ourselves a great deal of harm”.

Great article in the Santa Fe Reporter on teaching kids outside, in Nature – the big classroom without walls. Also see Environmental Education Association of New Mexico.

Another quote from the article:

The stream and the pond were my childhood companions, they were a playground, they were books and television, they were the mirrors of a gangly and contemplative Narcissus. In the splashings of any pool there is whatever one will need to see: the dream of everything, the nightmare of nothing, clouds and stars, a self.
— Stanley Crawford, A Garlic Testament: Seasons on Small New Mexico Farm

Guess This Sound #3 – Answer

02007-01-31 @ 08:01

Nice guesses everyone! Here is how I recorded the sound.

Wednesday Morning Links

02007-01-31 @ 08:01

1. Inochi
2. Drum Machine
3. Human Slingshot
5. Arabic version of the song Shaft
6. BBC’s Climate Challenge Game

They forecasted snow again. We had a little bit last night and it looks like it is getting ready to dump some more. Fog has already rolled in and the air looks thick.

Worked on Up Close yesterday, the next band-album. Ideas are starting to flow for that recording and I want to concentrate on it for the next couple of months. I want to have several tracks ready for Dave to play percussion on when he returns to Santa Fe later in February.

Made dinner for Kazuaki Tanahashi and Roshi Joan Halifax. Kaz gave me the above links to Inochi (Life-force in Japanese) and AWWA and Beyond Thinking, selected writings of Dogen Zenji, a book he translated and edited. While I was making dinner iTunes – in Party Shuffle mode – served up the above linked Arabic version of Shaft from the first Buddha Bar compilation. Most of this cover-version is unremarkable – I love the original – but it’s nice when the arabic violin lines mix with the funk. Canton sent me the Drum Machine link and I don’t remember where I saw the Slingshot vid first.

Summer 07 Touring Schedule

02007-01-30 @ 15:01

Touring Schedule
Jun 07 Phoenix AZ – The Celebrity Theatre
Jun 09 Las Vegas NV – Boulder Station
Jun 12 Santa Barbara CA – Soho Music Club
Jun 16 Saratoga CA – Mountain Winery
Jun 22 Reno NV – John Asuaga’s Nugget
Jun 23 Reno NV – John Asuaga’s Nugget

These are the first confirmed dates of a new summer tour with the quartet. More dates will be added as they are confirmed.

Guess this Noise #3

02007-01-30 @ 14:01

Stephen and I got together yesterday for Monday Night Flamenco (pizza ‘n’ beer, discuss Flamenco, watch YouTube, make fun of, admire, bitch and kvetch…) and came up with this idea for our Guess this Noise game.

Audio MP3

HERE is the solution.

If you are new to this game, you can find the first two noises HERE and HERE.

One or One Thousand

02007-01-30 @ 13:01

jhalifax’s Blog: One or One Thousand People Makes No Difference
Beautiful post by Roshi Joan Halifax.

The frog is jumping

02007-01-30 @ 10:01

WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future: “We Are Winning!”
The boiled frog is jumping. It turns out that a boiled frog always jumps. To think otherwise was a mere urban legend. The frog won’t jump free from its dire, life-threatening menace at the first effort, but next year will be even hotter and scarier, and the frog will jump harder. From now on, the frog will jump all the time. Further urging to jump will not be required from the likes of us Viridians. The frog has gotten the message.

Here you can check up on your real estate.

More info: Convenient Truths: Greenland’s Warming Island (TreeHugger)

Welcome to Country X

02007-01-30 @ 09:01

Country X :: View topic – Welcome to Country X

Tibet Slideshow Test

02007-01-29 @ 14:01

Please ignore the strange artifacts in the very beginning of this YouTube video. I uploaded the video three times, but the artifacts keep coming up. Anyway, I worked on this slideshow on the bus last week. Used Keynote to arrange the photos and exported the result to Quicktime. The music I used for this little test is “This Spring Release 10,000 Butterflies”, but I plan to write and record new music. I imagine the whole slideshow would be about 45-60 minutes in length.


02007-01-27 @ 11:01

Santa Fe is still cold, but now the sun shines. We came home yesterday, uplifted by a very nice performance at the Paramount in Austin.

Photo by Stephen Duros

Performances at the Paramount always tend to be a better than average and I blame a combination of good acoustics, beautiful venue, the nice vibe of the city Austin and its people, and last but not least a great audience. Thanks to all who came to see us on this little run. There might be a few more Texas performances sometime in the Summer after dates in Florida and Puerto Rico.

How to Enjoy Your Tea

02007-01-27 @ 11:01

how to enjoy your tea – a photoset on Flickr
A beautiful photoset, I might add.

Crockett on Wednesday

02007-01-24 @ 22:01

Tonight we performed in Crockett, Houston County, Texas. Jon’ s new Saz solo on Snakecharmer was happening, as opposed to last night in Dallas, when it was not happening – last night no sound came out at all! Today we discovered that the cable connecting the Saz to the soundsystem was bad, broken, kaputt! Switched cables and tonight he rocked out on the saz. It’s an electric Saz that Robbie Rothschild’s brother Char lent us for the week.

Took my new Brompton bike for a spin in Dallas yesterday. Rode to the post office to mail a couple of letters. The bike folds up in a couple of minutes – and it should only take 20 seconds once I remember the sequence correctly. Much better ride than the iXi bike I had before.

Dallas on Tuesday – Input

02007-01-23 @ 13:01

Voice-input for computers a la Startrek – yawn. Why would I want everyone in the control-room to hear that I am turning down the bass… Or I am sitting in a pubic space like a Wi-Fi cafe and people can hear my commands. Voice-recognition is great for blind people or people missing one or more limbs, but otherwise un-interesting, I think. Good for quick notes though. Note to self: the Legal Grounds cafe near the Lakewood Theater is frequented by more borgs (people wearing bluetooth headsets) than any other place I have ever been in.

Handwriting-recognition – double yawn. I can type much faster than I can write and that goes double for anyone in their twenties or thirties. I thought Palm Pilots with Graffiti were cool in the nineties, but since switching to a Treo 650 a couple of years ago I haven’t used a stylus and prefer the keyboard.

No, the interaction I want with a computer is gesture-based. My fingers are the best pointing device. I use my fingers much more than I would use, say, a pen or my voice. Take my studio for example. I have a two-screen set-up and when I am using ProTools the screens have so much going on that quite often I can’t find the cursor right away. Is it on the right screen or did I leave it on the left screen? I search and wiggle the mouse… when all I should have to do is touch the screen and that’s where the mouse is. I think once we have multi-touch screens we will wonder how long we made without them. Children will ask how did you do without multi-touch the same way I asked my parents how they got by using a hand-pump to draw water from a well. How did you take a bath? We went to the well with a bucket, several times, and then heated water on a wood-stove…

Enhanced by iTunes

02007-01-23 @ 11:01

A Red Cat’s Journey, Enhanced by iTunes – New York Times
Then Mr. Cooder noticed something else: When he burned a copy of the album using Apple’s iTunes software, it sounded fine. He didn’t know why until one of his younger engineers told him that the default settings on iTunes apply a “sound enhancer.” (It’s in the preferences menu, under “playback.”) Usually, that feature sweetens the sound of digital music files, but Mr. Cooder so liked its effect on his studio recordings that he used it to master – that is, make the final sound mixes – his album. “We didn’t do anything else to it,” he said.

Mr. Cooder is most likely the first well-known musician to master his album using iTunes, but other producers have also noticed its effect.

If this wasn’t the NYT, I would think it was a hoax. Well, what happens when the same algorithm is applied to the music twice, once by Ry Cooder and for the second time when somebody listens to his music on iTunes? Would it be like adding an EQ twice and possible over-doing it?

Can’t Buy Me Love (or a Long Life)

02007-01-23 @ 10:01

Can’t Buy Me Love (or a Long Life) (TreeHugger)

On average, Chileans can expect to live longer than the average American, even though GDP per person is about a quarter of America’s. A Cuban male has a better chance of surviving until 65 than an American male, even though GDP per capita in the US is about eight times Cuba’s.

And this is also despite the US spending 15% of its GDP on health. Cuba, for, example averages around $623 USD, per person a year, while the US manages $5,711, even though Cuba has the world’s highest proportion of doctors, per capita. So ain’t it odd that we’re raping forests, digging vast holes in the ground, polluting our air and water, etc, so we can chase more ‘stuff’ that will neither make our lives happier nor longer? Maybe, just maybe, this is a merry-go-round ride from which we need to dismount.
(Via Treehugger)

Maybe not odd at all.

02007-01-23 @ 10:01

RICHART’s Valentine 2007 Chocolate Gift Collection
Give your love the gift of tranquility with RICHART’s Zenitude Collection.

Zen + Attitude = Zenitude? I hope that did not spend too much money and time on coming up with Zenitude, because the word sounds awful.

Rahim AlHaj

02007-01-22 @ 20:01

Democrat & Chronicle: Living
Great interview with Rahim. Please read. Just found it as we are rolling towards Dallas. My laptop is hooked up to something on top of the bus.

Stephen posted some pics

02007-01-20 @ 17:01

Ottmar Liebert & Luna Negra Band Rehersal Jan 07 – a photoset on Flickr
If you could only hear the cool transition from a slow Blues to a Bulerias we came up with. Gives me vertigo. I get the same feeling while performing or listening to a time change in music, in the above instance from 4/4 to 12/8, that I get from looking down from a tall building. Suspension, going through a tunnel, a funny sensation in the lower chakra… it’s a little unsettling – in a good way. Like a carnival ride.

Fermat’s Spiral

02007-01-20 @ 09:01

The sheet that was hanging above Santa Fe has been lowered and now it appears as if we could touch it.

Fermat’s Spiral — from Wolfram MathWorld
Does the spiral on the right at above page remind you of the yin-yang sign? (Reference found on Roshi Joan’s blog)

So many ways to get to the bottom. Music, math, particle study, genetics. Every road traveled far enough will give up some gems. A million ways to touch the sky.

Rehearsal at 10AM today. I want to play Havana Club again.

Added the SSRI label to this week – Link. And here is the wikipedia entry on, which is basically your own personal internet radio station. Flickr for music. It also suggests artists and albums based on the music you like. I hear this works pretty well with Reggae or Techno, but not so well for our kind of music (which is WHAT?). A while ago Canton suggested that the reason for that is that there is a lot more data available for those genres. That makes a lot of sense. Here is Jon’s artist page and here is Stephen. Check this out: Hm, I don’t own a single album by any of the guitarists that suggests are similar to me.

Got home just in time after rehearsal – it’s snowing heavily again.

Thursday Morning Stuff

02007-01-18 @ 15:01

It’s Thursday Morning. 100% cloud cover. Like somebody had tied a bed-sheet above Santa Fe….

All of the iTunes reviews by the other “Ottmar Liebert” were taken down yesterday. I am off to have breakfast with Jon.

The Rahim, Ottmar, Jon and Barrett project (note to self – must find better name for the group!) is shaping up nicely. The few people who have heard it LOVE it. Maybe a Summer 2007 release…

Lots of interesting and even exciting stuff going on… hm, but nothing I can tell you about yet. What a tease…


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