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Me and a lorikeet (February 24, 2008)

READIN

Jeremy's journal

Songs are just interesting things to do with the air.

Tom Waits


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Monday, April 30th, 2012

Otra vez publicación

I got word yesterday that Metamorphoses, the journal of literary translation at Smith College, accepted my translation of Slavko Zupcic's story, "Tescucho, Italia" -- nice! This is the first piece that I have had accepted after submitting it to a couple of magazines and being rejected. Glad I kept sending it out. It will appear in the fall 2013 issue of Metamorphoses.

posted evening of April 30th, 2012: 1 response
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Sunday, April 29th, 2012

Fiddle Songbook

Latest addition to my repertory is "Billy in the Lowground," which I've been wanting to learn ever since I saw the Ether Frolic Mob playing it. Here are two takes:

Billy in the Lowground

by The Modesto Kid

Billy in the Lowground (alternate take)

by The Modesto Kid

Here, in no particular order, are the songs I know well enough to think of them as my repertory (excluding numerous songs like "Crawdad Hole" and "Uncle Joe, Uncle Joe" which, while I can play a pretty nice instrumental version, I think of as songs to sing. These are just the songs that I identify primarily as fiddle tunes.) Criteria for this list is, I have to know the melody by heart (after maybe a glance at the music) and be able to play it easily with improvisation over the melody and be able to cover up for myself ifwhen I make a mistake.

  • The Red-Haired Boy
  • The Sailor's Hornipe
  • The Devil's Dream
  • Bill Cheetham
  • The Halting March
  • Harvest Home
  • The Boys of Bluehill
  • The Growling Old Man and the Carping Old Woman
  • The Road to Lisdoonvarna
  • The Irish Washerwoman
  • The Swallowtail Jig
  • East Tennessee Blues
  • Billy in the Lowground
  • Soldier's Joy
  • Whiskey Before Breakfast
  • The Modesto Kid
  • Jeremy's Breakdown
  • Drowsy Maggie
  • Bonaparte's Retreate/ Bonaparte Crossing the Rhine/ Bonaparte Crossing the Rocky Mountains

Two new songs to learn, that I printed out music for today: "St. Anne's Reel" and "Ragtime Annie".

posted morning of April 29th, 2012: Respond
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Friday, April 27th, 2012

Genre

Let's listen to Anton Barbeau.

You're welcome. Everybody has to go buy this record and listen to it.

posted evening of April 27th, 2012: Respond
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Central Park South

posted evening of April 27th, 2012: Respond
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Thursday, April 26th, 2012

You make it sound so simple.

Martha M.'s video poem "innocent beat" is featured at Moving Poems.

Wheels within wheels! I love the image of words as gears.

posted morning of April 26th, 2012: Respond
➳ More posts about Readings

Monday, April 23rd, 2012

Something happens, and the scene is transformed.

The Cat's Table is an odd book. I liked it a lot, but without ever being sure just what I was reading. Most of the book, you do not get the impression that you are reading a story -- just some lovely and fairly disconnected childhood reminiscences. (Ondaatje has a note at the end, which I found gracious and helpful, saying that "although the novel uses the colouring and locations of memoir and autobiography, The Cat's Table is fictional.") As you come to the end, it turns out you have been meeting the characters and learning the setting for a swashbuckling adventure story -- and then in the final pages it is suddenly not that either, it is something altogether different and touching.

posted evening of April 23rd, 2012: Respond
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Saturday, April 21st, 2012

Speed

I was at the song swap this afternoon -- for the first time -- I am certainly going to be going back there, and to hope that Deena and Rebecca ask us to perform there sometime. What a great pool of talent! I played "Devil's Dream", and I still can't quite believe how fast I played it -- for weeks now I have been thinking, "well, I'm playing it much slower than the standard tempo; but on the other hand I'm getting a really sweet, romantic sound in that slow pace"; but it turns out one can also get a really sweet, romantic sound in a fast tempo, too! I think I was still not playing just as fast as the bluegrass fiddlers I've heard playing this song... But just being in front of the audience really pushed me, drove me into the song. I also played (a bit slower, but again faster than I have been practicing the song) a new composition called (bet you never did) "The Modesto Kid". -- I also recorded that tune and am loving listening to it. Probably will upload to Soundcloud soon.

Update: Here it is!

posted evening of April 21st, 2012: Respond

The lie that helps us see the truth


Edward O. Wilson's article for Harvard Magazine on the biological origins of the arts includes the startling insight that metaphor can be seen as a way of compensating for the limited range of human senses. (Thanks for the link, Joe!)

posted morning of April 21st, 2012: Respond
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Let's Listen to

Kimberley Rew!

You're welcome.

posted morning of April 21st, 2012: 2 responses

Thursday, April 19th, 2012

Danko/Manuel/Helm

Rest in peace, Levon.

posted evening of April 19th, 2012: Respond
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