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Me and Sylvia, on the Potomac (September 2010)


Jeremy's journal

Improvement makes straight roads; but the crooked roads without improvement are roads of genius.

— William Blake

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Go, little buddies, go!

posted Tuesday evening: Respond



Luminiferous Genesis
by J Osner

The first day was water. On the second day
water created earth.
On the third day mud

breathed air. On the fourth day creation blazed, and said
that it was good. Muddy reality,
eternally drying out in the heat

of the moment.

posted Saturday morning: Respond
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Saturday the 6th

Twilight Zone - Once Upon a Time - Buster Keaton by pourlidasnstavros

posted afternoon of the 6th: Respond

Sound advice

Sedula curavi humanas actiones non detestare neque flere neque ridere, sed intelligere. (Spinosa)

posted morning of the 6th: Respond


on an easel on the stage, the title -- ποταμοῖσι τοῖσιν αὐτοῖσιν ἐμϐαίνουσιν, ἕτερα καὶ ἕτερα ὕδατα ἐπιρρεῖ. Different waters bathe those who step into the same river. --Heraclitus of Ephysus. The spot fades and the placard is removed; enter Cratylus stage right. Lights come up stage right on Cratylus and gradually on the rest of his colleagues, who are standing like statues. Each (except Cratylus) has a placard identifying the character's name at his feet. Cr. kicks them away one by one as he points at the actor -- "waking him up".

posted morning of the 6th: 3 responses
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Monday, November 17th

1955: Lavender Mist

— My friend, you are a barbarian. You paint as if one eye were on the moon and the other on Mars. I don't like your work; but you have made me weep. And tears are the blood of sincerity.
Cool -- two publications in a row of Marta Aponte Alsina translations! A story I translated last year is included in the November issue of The Acentos Review -- 1955: Lavender Mist.

posted evening of November 17th: Respond
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Saturday, November 15th

The Modesto Kid

Some folk music for your perusal --

The Modesto Kid -- Very happy with this playlist of folk tunes and covers that I've been recording over the past few months. (Primarily happy about this since I am really enjoying listening to it -- the thing that most strongly motivates my playing music is how much I enjoy listening to the tapes -- is this an embarrassing thing to admit? And happy as well about the prospect of other people digging the tunes. So please take a listen!) Here's a track listing and a couple of annotations.

I seem to have happened on a rhythmick formulation through which one can transform a song: a way to create a totally new song on the structure of a traditional or a popular tune. I've been recording a lot of songs transformed through this method -- this method of altering the song's beat and key and (in consequence) twisting even the melody and lyric itself as necessary -- and here lay out some of the fruits of that project.

"Here Comes the Sun" is the most recent of the group -- I made this recording on the spur of the moment and it is what revealed to me that the project was complete.

"Bring it in over to my house, mama," by Blind Willie McTell. Excellent, excellent, exciting ragtime lick! (Thanks, Dylan, for the introduction to Blind Willie McTell -- thanks, Erik Frandsen, for teaching me this song.)

"Ballad of Hollis Brown" is one of the saddest songs I've ever heard. (The three saddest songs I can think of are all by Bob Dylan; the fourth is a traditional number sung by Dylan.) I'll put this in a category with several other trax here as a song that I could picture being traditional. Just hoping I can do my bit to help turn these songs into traditional numbers :)

We been playin' some old-time favorites. Here's "Tell Old Bill." I know this song from the Chad Mitchell Trio. Not totally sure whether it is by Dave Van Ronk or traditional* :)

"Richland Woman Blues" by MS John Hurt, which I know via Jim Kweskin & the Jug Band. I'm no Maria Muldaur but I sure do love to sing that lilting melody! Another one I learned from Erik Frandsen.

(Turning the recorder back on, here's) "Stagger Lee" (hey finally an actually traditional traditional!) -- another tune that I know via Mississippi John Hurt. He's the first delta blues artist I ever really got into.

alright now here's something a little different. A version of John B. (this is a song deeply rooted in my memory of childhood campfire sing-alongs.) I'm never quite sure what to make of this narrative (to tell the truth) but I love the melody/the sound and sentiment of it. This recording has a flaw and I ought to redo it, same goes for a couple of other trax here. Apologies if I have not addressed this already. Oh my god I feel so broke up. dig the solo. (now let's see how that came out.)

kooky little instrumental. was finally able to figure out a dramatic way to end this lick. nice.

Oh yes! Lady waters and the hooded one! made up changes! This is a song off Element of Light by Robyn Hitchcock. Seems totally like a much older, traditional ballad. Great story! (Each time I sing it I wonder why exactly, the hooded one would have recoiled from Lady Waters' sickness? -- seems like as Death he'd have been into that kind of thing.) Extremely erotic song about death and Death.

"desolation row." (grin, shrug) A possibly self-indulgent tribute to an idol. If you're not into that sort of thing, skip it. Otherwise enjoy! :) This song's story-line is a bit harder to follow -- definitely there are moments of insight if you look/listen closely enough. Listen to Cinderella sweeping up, on Desolation Row.

another kooky little instrumental to bracket the two long vocals :)

"wish you were here" (speaking of tributes to idols), featuring me and John as Mountain Station. dig the solo/dig the harmony!

"12 gates to the city". Hey everyone: if you haven't gotten to see "Harlem Street Singer" yet, go find a way to see it! I've rewritten a Gary Davis gospel number a fair bit, came up with something new :) -- threw in a little Apocamon imagery. You owe it to yourself to listen to Gary Davis, and to watch the film if you get the chance.

"taps" (on balalaika :)) -- goodnight.

posted evening of November 15th: 2 responses
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Saturday, October 25th

Ok, check *this* out:

ok, check *this* out:
#desolationrow #coverversion #dylancovers

posted morning of October 25th: Respond
➳ More posts about Music

Sunday, October 19th

Two epigraphs

"Be quiet the doctor's wife said gently, let's all keep quiet, there are times when words serve no purpose, if only I, too, could weep, say everything with tears, not have to speak in order to be understood."
-- Blindness, Jose Saramago

"Doc tried calling her name but of course words out here were only words."
-- Inherent Vice, Thomas Pynchon

posted evening of October 19th: 1 response
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Dark Star/ Howl

It is difficult for me to express what a great idea this mash-up is. I can almost picture the notional Ginsburg out on stage with the Dead. Which indeed I think he did interact with them some times. Absolutely riveting. I must congratulate and thank Brendon Banks.

This is the kind of pairing that makes you see each component in a new light. The poem, below the fold.

posted morning of October 19th: 3 responses
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