Greetings ,folks - been awhile….
Had some ‘job changes’ to go thru this fall – if you told me 25 years ago, I would be a substitute teacher in the Storm Lake,Iowa area, you would have gotten a chuckle, and vague looks from me. Of course, now it all makes sense, because that’s a another gig I’ve got going. I wanted to see if my years of teaching music lessons would pan out to the traditional classroom – so far, so good. A bit scary,huge learning curve, but on any given day, you can learn applied math, cover Shakespeare’s “Julius Caesar”, and learn about blood flow direction in the human heart – fascinating, uh?
The gutting of a world economy, regional wars that never seem to end once troops leave the area, and what’s shaping up to be a class social system in the good ol’ U. S. Of A – doesn’t look promising. Thank God and the fates we have the arts to turn to when enough is enough. Of course, all I can tell you is my perspective – that’s all I know, logically, no matter if it’s hip or it ain’t. So, please allow me to rap waxsodically on my view of 2011……
Technology – gotta love it because it’s become the great leveler of power between artists and “The Man” – the old’ record company’ is a thing of the dust and dirt in the music bid’ness. Create, upload, file share, download – for better or worse, we can all buy and sell(and steal,unfortunately)audio and video between our little own tea party. Don’t be afraid,son - here, have this file;the Big Ol’ Bad Music Company isn’t going to hurt you. Plus, here’s another cool thing – you wanna start an art project? Go on-line, and have people all over the dang planet invest in you – you’re selling stock shares in YOU now, Gomer! The coolest……
Finally got a digital field recorder and digital video recorder – not the most expensive, but the Tascam stereo field recorder( $89 at Sweet water Music), and the Zoom Q3(also at Sweet water) have opened my world up for writing music, capturing music lessons, and student concerts and jams for my studio while getting GREAT sound and video( I don’t wanna even think about the old days of how much equipment that would have taken to make it work).
Somebody had mentioned that the recent Metallica/Lou Reed collaboration ,”Lulu”, falls in the ‘genius/joke’ category – I must admit, I had visions of “Sweet Jane” mashing up with “Master Of Puppets” myself. From that end, I was wholly disappointed, but I think the 90 minutes of the self-absorbed, meandering at times, ‘MetaliReed’, does have it’s brilliant moments. Like an ancient blood-letting ritual, Lou and the M-Boys want to cleanse and shock the system – it’s like sonic group therapy.
Need to say goodbye to an early influence,Mr. Glen Campbell – his last album ever, due the tragic,rotting effects of Alzheimer’s – is brilliant. “Ghost On A Canvas” should be up for some Grammys, if Adele ( another fresh force of wind to our industry) doesn’t snatch them all up. Late 1960’s, being a kid with a deceased mom and a dad working nights at John Deere, trying to forge a way to get his feet back on the ground after a devastating loss, my aunt and I would watch the “Glen Campbell Good Time Hour” ( Wednesday nights, I believe, on CBS). I found out about Jimmy Webb through Glen, whose wonderful interpretations of such Webb classics as “Wichita Lineman “ and “Galveston”, would forever etch a musical path in my brain, and persuade me to follow my dream in the arts. Plus, Glen Campbell could absolutely BURN on guitar – kill it, man! So long, Glen – thanks for giving me a spark to pick up a six –string, and challenge myself to play and sing those songs you’ve made classics.
Also thankful for the young and old minds I try to inspire, teach, and mentor each week thru my music studio, and now, thru the area school systems. Thanks to all of you for giving me a chance to help you help yourselves – let’s keep it going in 2012.
Mary, Andrew ,and dogs Cody and Maggie – Dad loves you, thanks for your love,forever.
Ciao, kidlets – go out in the world this coming year, and make it better!