July 04, 2015

Sweet Land of Liberty

America is the Budweiser Beer of nations: very big, very important in the scheme of things, not nearly as good as one might wish in the event. Another round, if it pleases?

June 27, 2015

Dead Dead at 50

The group that continues to think of itself as the Grateful Dead, now comprised after all these years of only Phil Lesh, Bob Weir, Bill Kreutzmann and Mickey Hart, has vowed to stop calling itself that anymore after this one, last, 50th Anniversary tour, which begins tonight at Levis Stadium in Santa Clara before moving on to Chicago for some shows around the Fourth of July. May their 401K's increase.

June 24, 2015

Looking South South West Or So

From the Trail at Twin Lakes, Santa Cruz, CA 2014

June 22, 2015

Phil Austin, April 6, 1941 – June 19, 2015

Phil Austin and his confederates created, in Firesign Theatre, the most sublime aural comedy ever made. His is the voice of Nick Danger, Third Eye.

June 13, 2015

W.B. Yeats (June 13, 1865 – January 28, 1939)

The renowned Yeats originated a hundred and fifty years ago today. So, there's that. I'm fond of this setting of Yeats to music:

June 09, 2015


Base of Redwood, Henry Cowell Redwood State Park, 2013

Part of a Large Tree, Henry Cowell Redwood State Park, 2013

June 04, 2015

The Other Side of the Bay

Pacific Grove beach, September 2009

May 30, 2015

Escape Officially Denied

Not Far Enough From Santa Cruz Harbor,  CA, 2015

May 15, 2015

B.B. King, Sept. 16, 1925-May14, 2015

I remember in my callow youth how very old I reckoned B.B. King to be, some lingering relic of a long-past era, when I saw him play Winterland in December of 1967. "Caldonia, Caldonia," he sang, "what makes you big head so hard?" Little did I know at the time that this was the first song ever described as "rock 'n roll" in print when recorded by Erskine Hawkins back in the 1940's, and that B. B. King had been a disc jockey back then, and probably played the record on the air, since it was a pretty big hit, and probably knew it had been called "rock 'n roll" at the time, too. And there he was in front of a crowd of the white student/hippie sort that Winterland attracted, reading the origins of rock 'n roll back to us before getting on with the regular order of business of the blues.

May 11, 2015

May 07, 2015

April 24, 2015

April 21, 2015

Three Quarks for Muster Mark It Says Here

The Idea of the Last Quark Before the End of the Universe, Illustrated

In the Falkland Islands, the bird is called "quark", which is an onomatopoeia similar to its name in many other languages, like "kwak" in Dutch and Frisian, "kvakoš noční" in Czech, "квак" in Ukrainian, "кваква" in Russian, "vạc" in Vietnamese, "kowak-malam" in Indonesian, and "waqwa" in Quechua.

April 09, 2015

April 08, 2015

iBillboard Scanned on the Information Superhighway

An unnecessarily ineptly worded pronouncement considering the number of underemployed English majors who could whip its phrasing into plausibility in a trice, unless, of course, the purpose of the missive is to underscore the fraudulence of the whole affair by lending the strong scent of corrupted language to the effort.

April 05, 2015

April 02, 2015

Fools Day Narrowly Averted

I see in the comments to this video of Paul Butterfield performing with his band at the Monterey Pops Festival that there is some sentiment for electing him to the Rock 'n Roll Hall of Fame.

However much his albums, particularly his first few, might be found in the record collections of many many discerning people who really really like rock 'n roll, just because the music he laid down there with his band is compatible with what many discerning people look for in rock 'n roll, it is not rock 'n roll he played, at least that I ever witnessed.

Electing him to The Rock 'n Roll Hall of Fame would be equivalent to electing Tiger Wood to Cooperstown. There are sports that are not baseball to judge the performance of those such as Wood who choose for whatever reason not to play the game, just as there are musics that are not rock 'n roll by which we can  judge the excellences of Paul Butterfield.

All of this because of a stray David Sanborne saxophone comment here, reminding me that I've pledged to forgive whatever infelicities Master Sanborne may ever deliver with his horn for the sake of the sequence of notes he managed here:

April 01, 2015

March 22, 2015