Thursday, May 10, 2007

Day in and out the life; body language

Yesterday (May 9) I bussed downtown in order to go to the library to hear the Ladies Musical Club lunchtime concert. I went as is my wont to Cafe Ladro for a tall drip (I've been called worse) and a peanut butter cookie (which I tried to install on my computer to no avail)
While I was munching and slurping, a musician I know (I've eaten an Oreo at his house)
happend in, apparently on break from rehearsals at the musical salt mine across the street. Poor guy, he is a truly talented, amusing, and friendly gentleman, an all 'round nice guy.
Generally, we wave, or nod, or occasionally say a few words.
Today, however was a bit odd. I saw him coming with some of his musical co-conspiritors, gave a little wave and smile, he did the same, but then continued to expend energy nodding, smiling, waving, but not speaking. I got the feeling that he was embarassed by my presence somehow. Hmmm.
Last time I saw him was in the same location and on that occasion I dumped a CD of my latest assemblage of (meets the legal description of) music on him.
And, my card.
Could it be that he is embarassed by knowing what a turkey of a composer I am?
It doesn't embarass me to know that.
So anyway, he went to the counter with his friends and bought his stuff, I went back to my cookie. (cute word, cookie, a kids word)
On his way out, however, he started making motions with his hands that were apparently meant to convey some kind of message. There was a vertical component to the gestures that could have been a salute, or a wave or something. Also there was a horizontal component that, combined with the vertical, almost seemed like a genuflection.
Was he acknowleding my godliness?
Was he making the sign of the cross in order to ward off evil?
Or, perhaps Hi, how are ya, (vertical) I've got to get back to work (horizontal, movements, like operating a bow {he is a string player})
It is obvious to me that he considers me a true looney, somthing which all of you are aware of already.
Or perhaps he was conducting, hoping to keep some semblance of control over my insanity.
I guess that would be the same as the sign to ward off evil.

The last time anyone connected with that aformentioned dark hole of the Seattle music scene spent that much energy acknowledging my presence in public was when a certain flute player walked across the length of the opera house (the old, interim one in the ice skating rink)(That's how long ago it was) to engage me in conversation. To see how that turned out, search "The Story" on this site.
So my paranoia meter is on the rise again.
The concert was nice, with a saxophonist playing Bach on a soprano, a piece by Evan Chambers on an alto, and a piece by David Keane on a baritone.
Liked it all, but the Bach was transcribed from a flute partita (A minor) and I thought that the sax voice did not do justice to the work.
the sound is harsher than a flute, besides being a tone lower.
Thanks to the Ladies Musical Club for putting on these concerts. (

We want on a road trip we drove long hours.
We saw geological features.
We saw fossils. We saw mountains.
We saw waterfalls. We saw gardens.
We stayed in motels. I read the book the Gideons left.

The falls were the ones known as "Silver Falls" in Oregon near Salem.
The garden is the one known as "The Oregon Garden", also near Salem (follow the signs to either place), a relatively new place, underfunded, relying on volunteer support (Hmm), but rivalling the fabulous Buchart Gardens just outside of Victoria B.C.

My attention deficiency disorder is beginning to kick in, 'bye.

Besides today I must move the refrigerator, the stove, and the cabinet and glue tile under 'em.

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Blogger butch said...


And the first shall be last. Great hulking ingrate dummy that I am about classical and modern music, I had to look up Evan Chambers:

Evan Chambers (b 1963, Alexandria, Louisiana) is a composer, traditional Irish fiddler, and Associate Professor of Composition at the University of Michigan. He received a Doctorate in music composition from the University of Michigan. His teachers include William Albright for whose Requiem he composed Lament, Leslie Bassett, Nicholas Thorne, and Marilyn Shrude, with studies in electronic music with George Wilson and Burton Beerman.

Chambers' compositions are deeply rooted in folk music, his own spirituality, and a keen comprehension of musical gesture and form. His works for large ensemble include Concerto for Fiddle and Violin for Irish fiddler, violin soloist, and orchestra; Three Islands for orchestra; The Tall-Eared Fox and the Wild-Eyed Man for string orchestra; and Polka Nation for wind ensemble. His chamber music includes Cold Water, Dry Stone and Crazed for the Flame. His electronic music compositions include Rothko-Tobey Continuum for violin and tape and Cell Phone Java Bodhi Svaha, with video by Andy Kirshner based on Buddhist-themed poetry by Chambers.

Chambers' music has been recorded on the compact disks Cold Water, Dry Stone (Albany, Troy 422), Simple Requests (Cambria CD-1088), Brutal Reality (Albany, Troy 354), and Alternating Currents

There, that tells me a lot. Next up who is David Keane? It helps to know more so that I can visualize the lady playing his music.

Keane, David (Roger). Composer, teacher, bassist, b Akron, O, 15 Nov 1943, naturalized Canadian 1974; B SC music education (Ohio State) 1965, B MUS (Ohio State) 1965, M MUS composition (Ohio State) 1967. He studied piano with George Haddad and double bass with Theron McClure 1961-5, Robert Meyer 1968-70, and Allan Molitz 1971-2. He moved to Canada in 1967 and taught music in schools, played double bass 1969-70 in the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, and instructed 1969-70 at Simon Fraser University. In 1970 he was appointed to Queen's University to teach composition and double bass. He founded the university's Electroacoustic Music Studio in 1970 and remained director of it in 1991. His book Tape Music Composition (London 1980) is an important study of the aesthetics and technology of electronic music. He has written many articles and reviews about music technology, pedagogy, and aesthetics for CME, Computer Music J, CUMR, Musicworks, Queen's Q, and other journals.
Keane has received many commissions from Canadian and European organizations and has travelled extensively in Europe and North America to deliver papers and to supervise performances of his compositions. He has used a wide variety of styles and media, and his prolific output ranges from works for traditional instruments to tape pieces and sound sculpture. His style was initially influenced by Hindemith, Bartók, Stravinsky, and early music (eg, Machaut). His interest in electronic music dates from 1963; much of his music involves electroacoustic aspects. After a brief flirtation with aleatoric music, his style became aligned more closely to minimalism, with highly concentrated melodic and rhythmic development. His music is a reaction against highly formalized structures and serialism; it evinces tonal centres but avoids functional harmony.

Keane is a founding member of the Canadian Electroacoustic Community and the Confédération internationale pour musique électroacoustique, a member of the CLComp, and an associate of the Canadian Music Centre.

Hey, tell us more about the "Tall Drip", and yes you have been called worse. I love the levity, by the way, that seems to show up in your writing; puns abound, and playfulness persists. And "cookie" is a great word like kitty, doggie, mommy, daddy, and a couple of others; all kid's vernacular.

This musician that you "know", this wonderful person who once took you to his house and let you eat an Oreo within --he seems victimized or traumatized by the 5th floor gestapo. Is it possible that Doug Palmer will be, or was yesterday, some hot topic around the water cooler? "Nodding, smiling, and not speaking..." now that is strange. Odd that he never attempted to give you some feedback about your card, or your CD of "music". Perhaps you now have the Pariah reputation there at SSO, perhaps you have such a penetrating personality, such a sinister gaze, such a bizarre vibration --that this poor bastard just was tongue-tied with exasperation; or maybe he was just constipated, and needed to swallow a grasshopper backwards and let it kick the shit out of him.

At least toward the end of your encounter, he made some attempt to communicate with you. Too bad you never studied American Sign Language, or SSO doublespeak, or attended enough church services to fully comprehend the excellent endeavor you witnessed; or not.

As to your "Godliness" or "looniness", sir, these truths are more than self-evident. What you are, beyond carbon and pulse, is a unique vibration, and at times a creature beyond comprehension; and you are pretty damned good with your hands, that used to strum guitar strings. When did that stop? I guess it's like everything else, my painting, sketching, and drawing, and your career as a rock star, just fads, just glimmerings of talent that never came to fruition. But, hey, one can return to one's old fixations whenever you want. Look at me and my writing. This last two years I have cranked out more words than in the 60 years previous. Well, yeah, perhaps some of them were/are innane, mundane, and poppycock, but hell, I'm having fun; and not more than a few dozen people have suffered grevious harm from them/it.

Paranoia, what a reality. Perhaps there is something in the SSO wind? Only the Shadow knows, and he ain't saying shit.

I am always suprised when you travel how little you enjoy it, or seem not to. By now you must be very familiar with he Gideon Bible. Do you bring other reading material as well? Several years ago, for my 3rd wedding anniversary, on April 3rd, Melva and I went down to the Oregon shores and checked out those fabulous beaches; too damned many tourists to suit me. So then we traveled inland. Oregon is one of the only states that on their map show the sites of all their covered bridges. We went on a covered bridge hunt one spring day, and found four of them. The map only gets you within a few miles of them. Most of them were built in the 20's and 30's, and none of them have the charm of the New England covered bridges; but it was a hoot, and we took some pics. Did you go over to central Oregon, past Mt. Hood, and down that beautiful inland highway on the east side of the Cascades, down past the twin sisters and Mt. Bachelor, on the way to Crater Lake?


6:10 AM  
Blogger Lane Savant said...

I never heard of these two guys either.
Or maybe I did but don't remember.
I was at his house for a rehearsal for a show that a piece of mine was to be on. "Nightmare Prelude"
I enjoy traveling. I pass through, I experience, I forget. The events that I've posted so far are from the end of the trip. More to follow. I took notes this time. If I can find where I put them.....

10:05 AM  

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