« Race to Judge »

I have a new tune to play you. I call it Race To Judge. Paul Horn played drums. I played everything else, including a few guitars and bass. It's been frustrating for about two years, not really doing much in music. More specifically, not much in the RECORDING of music. I've been frustrated with players, gear, and myself. The standards are being raised and I know that I need to keep things improving. This tune is the first to reach this level of completion in recorded form in some time. Paul and I began playing together in September, and we have tried a number of guitarists and working methods with varying degrees of success. The recent successes were had when I put on the super Strat and just raged through the Mesa. It's very primal that way. Paul gets off on cutting loose, and it gives me a chance to freeform my guitar ideas. It's still messy and not too nice to hear, but to me it's like shaking the money tree and watching the filthy stuff fall into my hands. So I have not been playing bass with Paul, like I set out to. Guitar. Rocking electric guitar. Raging Electric Guitar. It's beautiful. Paul responds better to my playing guitar, and it's a lot more liberating to just cut loose on that. It's something I think we need to do more of. I may just do that. The thought of me finally stepping up to the plate and asserting myself as a guitarist for my own material is beginning to get some attention. Paul has led me to doing things I hardly ever gave myself the ability to believe I could do. And then there is this for more inspiration for us impressionable young musicians:

King Crimson still kicks ass. I just got their latest, The Power To Believe. I have to tell you, that band keeps writing my tunes! I have been into KC since about this time eight years ago when I got the newest thing from them at the time, Thrak. That came at the same time as I was getting into playing guitar. And it left its mark. If you like KC, you must get out and get this record.

On a virtually unrelated note, I have been working like a dog lately. It's actually the best month since about the summer before 9/11. And it's just in time to fund the payment of some credit bills, and all those wallet-sucking sort of expenses. So no plans to go to the UK anytime soon. (For those who don't know, the UK is a long anticipated destination for me, but now it's been more than 10 years since I went to Germany, and damn if that didn't go fast. And now it seems that it's not really the best time to go flying to foreign lands.)

The next best thing is being host and amateur diplomat for those who come to my country. This month, I have this short stint as a bus driver for a group of Japanese ESL students. It's only a three week program, already entering the second week. A number of my student passengers are staying in private homes Clairemont, which is my home turf. In passing, we go by most of the places I have gone to school, my houses and apartments, etc. It's not anything special really, but sometimes mundane is special in its own way. I have never hosted a group before, but a couple of friends from overseas have been shown around SD, and I like doing that. And we all know, if the government isn't going to present this country's best side, we need to do that as individuals. And with this impending war nonsense, any shred of humanity and diplomacy is desperately needed, coming from this country. This group almost got canceled because they traveled in the same week as we went code orange. Some groups actually did cancel. I have two more weeks to think about the importance of being a shuttle driver for Japanese students.

And if the amount of housework ever really decreases, I may just get a moment of clear mindedness in to think about such things. In the last week and a half, I had a roommate move out on weak terms, the basic house work to do, and then as I was prepping to paint the room, I found a puddle of water in the closet. That led to a large scale task: tearing out carpet, trying to salvage the least damaged parts, discarding some, tearing up floor tiles that were waterlogged and buckling, stripping two walls from the bathroom, and now it's time to put it all back together. Needless to say, it's a lot of work. And I'm not even the only one doing it. It comes at a bad time, given that the shuttle job is a five day a week job that takes up most of the day. It's pretty overwhelming. And that isn't even mentioning trying to fit any music making, web site work, or girlfriend time in.

Speaking of web site work, my commercial pitch site is almost in the can. It's intended to be the services-for-hire site, with information about my web building and recording studio services. I have a few things to fix and fine tune, but it's mostly there. Thanks to Colleen Carr for the invaluable assistance and guidance.

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