After this, more sedate Jazz…
I’m almost done with Miles Davis. Just On the Corner left.
I may not have mentioned this before, but I have a blog on Tumblr that is devoted to a somewhat geeky and idiosyncratic project: reviewing every music CD I own. It’s called Every. Damn. CD. and it’s got quite a history. I’ve been working on it for a long time, because I have long spells of being unable to work on it. And the structure – by genre, in alphabetical order – makes sense for the blog, but doesn’t always inspire work flow.
ANYway, I’m in my jazz cd’s right now, and I’m currently working on John Coltrane, who I’ve never been as devoted to as other people who like jazz are. The fault is doubtless mine.
Which is to say, fisking his liner notes, which are irritating and pretentions: the latest post over at Every. Damn. CD.
Original text in italic, my responses in Bold.
Notes on the Compositions Included Herein
AKA, I’M A MUSICIAN AND A GENIUS AND I LIKE FISH STICKS IN MY MOUTH.
1. Hungry Freaks, Daddy…(3:27) Was written for Carl Orestes Franzoni. He is freaky down to his toe nails. Some day he will live next door to you and your lawn will die. Drop out of school before your mind rots from exposure to our mediocre educations system. Forget about the Senior Prom and go to the library and educate yourself if you’ve got any guts. Some of you like pep rallies and plastic robots who tell you what to read. Forget I mentioned it. This song has no message. Rise for the flag salute.
While it’s cute to see what hippies were called before they were called hippies, and it’s disappointing to read what was said about Motorhead being first said fifteen years before the fact in reference to some rando, do you really think that anyone drops out of school in order to educate themselves? I know you guys hadn’t learned this in 1966 yet, but the kind of kids who go to the library and read are the same kind of kids who do well in school and don’t waste their time moaning about pep rallies, because they’ve already decided that they’re not worth getting worked up over. Kids who drop out mostly stop reading anything except pamphlets in the unemployment office entitled “Chlamydia and You.”
The song would be better without the stupid helium-voice sound effect at the end of every verse. I mean, I know it’s the Sixties, but damn.
I go on like that, because so does he.
A Song of Ice and Fire, Hold the Ice
If you’re on Reddit, you probably noticed or took part in the New Year’s Night vigil of watching George R.R. Martin’s livejournal for the update on The Winds of Winter. I myself did, and it was an instructive lesson in group emotions: first excitement, then frustration, then japery, rage, despair, and, just when we thought he’d gone to bed and we were getting all the news we were going to get, he commented and said he had one more update in him. The joy (“hype” as they call it on Reddit) was transcendent. Fans of A Song of Ice and Fire who were previously damning George for a lazy old fat prat got religion without even blinking.
He admitted his frustration with his progress and copped to the problems he’d been having. And I was fine with it. I was fine with him telling me what I surmised to be true: that Season 6 of Game of Thrones was going to spoil the books. It’s disappointing, but it’s okay. Now we can finally accept it.
Podcasting Takes Time
I’ve been trying to find the right moment to sit down and do my next podcast, which I have previously stated to be all about Star Wars. Now that we’ve had a chance to digest the film, I can see some of the complaints about it, but I’m going to talk about that more fully. I just need to make myself do it. And sooner, rather than later, because…
January is My Personal NoWriMo
Reading Larry Correia’s blog (especially this post) has inspired me to sit my rear end down and get cracking on my epic fantasy stories. I started creating this world on an electric typewriter back when I was 14, and seeing them in print has always been a dream. My first completed novel, The Island Prince, was from this world. It took me three years to write it, and its in no condition to be published. So I’m going to start again, with a story a few centuries before that. Hopefully what I’ve learned about writing over the last twelve years will show itself in the product. But at any rate, I’m on this. Working title: The Blood King
Actual Content Creation
And then there’s the music review project, Every Damn CD, on Tumblr. Currently I’m on the White Stripes, but there’s so much more to go.
I have long been fascinated by the Crusades, the Crusader states, and the military orders. Piers Paul Read’s The Templars is a magisterial book that fits in well with the newer generation of Crusade historians (good-bye, “ambitious younger sons”, hello “pious armed pilgrims”). The Templars, of course, met their brutal end before the Middle Ages were over, but the Knights Hospitaller survived, first on Rhodes, then on Malta, where they became the great anti-Turk sea-lords of the Mediterranean. They survive today as the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, a charitable organization with knightly flavor.
That history and a few viewings of Hellboy has inspired a piece of fiction, perhaps the stepping stone of a larger work:
On a related note, the claim of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant to the Caliphate of all Islam let me down the rabbit hole to learn one or two things about what went down in the Mid-East in the 20th Century. Most interestingly, I learned that the House of Saud has been ruling in the Arabian Penninsula for a long time. Check out the rest at my new svbtle.com blog, Histeria. A relevant quote:
The Caliphate is imperial by nature: it’s godly goal is to expand the ummah. Every Caliphate has stagnated and collapsed when it hit its military limits. That was true of the Umayyad Caliphate, the Abassid Caliphate, and the Ottoman Empire; it will be true of ISIL.
Where exactly those limits are is the question of the hour.
And of course, there’s my music tumblr, Every. Damn. CD. I just finished up with Led Zeppelin. Rockabilly to follow.
So I mentioned that I was re-vamping my Tumblr from having a no real purpose to having a purpose. In the past 2 days I’ve gained nearly 500 followers.
Granted, it’s Tumblr, so following is easy and doesn’t necessarily lead to connection or interaction with contact. It’s like Twitter that way. Of all those followers, there are only a handful of likes, and I think one reblog. But I only have 654 Twitter followers, and I’ve been tweeting for years.
To what do I owe this success, such as it is? I think the following:
- People get what my Tumblr’s about, and are interested. People like talking about music, and my posts are short and to the point.
- Bro, Do You Even Tag? In doing music reviews, it always helps to tag the band name, the song name, the album name. Then people who check the tags see the content, and decide to follow if they like what they see.
- YouTube is the New MTV. After (which is to say, above) every review, I do a separate video post which has either a favored deep track or a live version or something else that I think noteworthy. YouTube is great at giving you options, and people like to hear music when they’re done reading about music.
So, Focus, Reach Out, and Consistent Content. Hopefully this continues.
Check out the noise at Every. Damn. CD.
I have a Tumblr for reasons that I never understood. It was just a thing to get, and a direct violation of my actual purpose in having a single blog with my name on it. But there’s a problem that’s never quite been satisfied.
I had, at one of my old dead blogs, a music writing project that I tried to import here and never fully did. I never fully did because my life got twist-turned upside down when I became a dad, and summoning the eloquence to write about R.E.M. and the Rolling Stones felt like work. And when you’re a blogger, work doesn’t feel right.
So I’m going to re-charge the project. I’m going to rate and review all of my CD’s. In the following order:
- By Genre
- Within Genre, alphabetically by Artist Name
- Within Artist, chronologically by release date.
It’s called Every.Damn. CD. and what’s going to make it change is I’m not going to try for eloquence or knock myself out for insight. Every disc gets a paragraph, a grade, and a youtube link if I happen to feel like it. I’ll go for knocking them out once or twice a week or so.
I’ve got a diverse music collection and I used to care about it. Let’s see if anything interesting falls therefrom.