Saturday, June 30, 2007

ebowing a toaster oven



What-what-ing the what?

Just as one can use a violin bow to play something other than violin strings, an Ebow (a sort of electromagnetic bow mostly used by guitar players) can be used to play the grill inside a toaster oven. Or any number of similar metal items.

My video above demonstrates that--if very basically.

Also a slide can be used to alter the pitch of the sound.

Now that you have this arcane knowledge, use it wisely . . .

Jamming with Ginger



Here's a video of Ginger the cat playing a theremin.

Courtesy renegadeaccordion and mentioned on sonicstate.com.

Devo interview

Recently caught on video--also at sonicstate.com.

the Modified Toy Orchestra

As the video embed proved to be squirelly, click here for a video (courtesy sonicstate.com) about the Modified Toy Orchestra, a group that plays circuit-bent toys.

While the interview with conductor Brian Duffy is okay, the video is short on compelling performance footage of the group.

My fave part (6:29 - 7:05) is Duffy demonstrating a circuit-bent toy electronic drum. Very cool.

And there's a great excerpt of their new CD at warmcircuit.com.

Friday, June 29, 2007

I don't care-Buck & Don et al



Having posted Aunt Mimi's roadside cover, I thought I'd embed this video of Buck Owens & his Buckaroos (courtesy sleepycreek, who's posted a slew of great country videos).

Remembering Buck as the assured pickin' & grinnin' host of Hee Haw, it kinda blows me away how in this other video ("Love's Gonna Live Here") he seemed to be getting his bearings as a TV performer. The man's giving a great musical performance, you bet--but as a MC he's blinking in the harsh camera light and reading stage remarks from something well below eye level.

Obviously he was always building onto his abilities as a performer. By the days of Hee Haw, he's facing & speaking to the camera like a best friend.

today on uberkayness: pictures of Stuckey's

pictures of Stuckey's: Stuckey's oh Stuckey's, near Williamsburg VA, Sept. 1999, in the wake of Hurricane Floyd.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

shakin' all over



A cool electromechanical noise rig courtesy of muzack.

I also rather like these sparky set ups (brought to you by ashfordaisyak):



Kewl, huh . . .?

Makes me wish I'd had a camera when I e-bowed a certain kitchen appliance. (Whoops, I've said too much.)

jamming with Pauline Oliveros



Alternate title: Lady of Space.

I love Pauline Oliveros and so not surprisingly I love this video of her improvising with two percussionists. Not a rock star vid to be sure, as Oliveros doesn't show up 'til the end (and then only her her right hand playing accordion).

Here's another video of same folks, the Timeless Pulse Trio, featuring tuned percussions and some fun trippy video edits. And here's another. And one of Timeless Pulse as a duo (without Oliveros).

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Aunt Mimi on the road



And in the front yard.

A homespun video I shot this afternoon of Steve Malatesta (right) & Derm Whittaker (left). Together they're called Aunt Mimi and they're caught in medias res singing the Buck Owens tune "I Don't Care".

Originally posted on uberkayness, this post breaks (for now?) my spate of avant-noisy video findings.

"it's okay . . I'm Glenn Branca's guitar tech . . ."



The funny thing about this video (uploaded to YouTube by sonichris) is how Glenn Branca kinda looks like The Boss with that Telecaster slung on.

'Course he's not. And this solo skronk fest is a bit different from Branca's later guitar symphonies. In any case, Branca rocks.

POSTSCRIPT: If the solo Branca footage seems a bit old-fashioned for your tastes, try this algorhythmic edit of the video by maurice666. To very roughly approximate: Jean-Luc Godard plays Pac-Man. Kewwwwwl.

"it's okay . . I'm starting a DNA tribute band . . ."

After your mom & dad have had time to say "a DNA wha' huh??", you could show them the following live footage of the inestimably skronky & skittery NYC No Wave band DNA & put their parental minds to rest.



Uploaded to YouTube by rawrumble courtesy www.brink.com (I'm guessing it's from the TV Party DVD).

Anyhow, gotta love these guys and in particular (for any of you electric guitarists playing at home) the very er, um, warm vintage tone Arto Lindsay's getting out of that 12-string Danelectro.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

our pal Foot Foot



The Wiggins sisters' original live performances predate home video.

But through the magic of animation, there are two concept videos of the Shaggs' song "My Pal Foot Foot". (To quote Bart Simpson, "pleasure overload . . .")

Both feature the original figure of Foot Foot from the cover art of the Shaggs' now famed LP, Philosophy of the World. Our elusive friend catches air on a hilly bike ride in one video and dons a beret & pads about the Eiffel Tower in the other.

The video above has drawn renderings of the band members while the second one animates the photo images from the album.

Boston Typewriter Orchestra



My wife just told me about this ensemble she found out about at www.bigredandshiny.com.

Emerging from my 20 year sleep/secluded mountain cave/(insert here your own objective corelative for way out of touch cluelessness), I found a video vista of the BTO. And heck they were even on the local Fox channel and Fox Cable News.

'Course, what's old is new and what's new is old again (again).

Typewriters & music have not been so far apart. And there were likely typing pools (at least in broad concept) kicking out the jams among the Futurists and at the Cabaret Voltaire. Certainly there's a spectral presence of those early Modern tricksters.

Below the BTO presents a very Dickensian Xmas via a kinda outsourced Trans-Europe Express/Music Man vibe. Many happy returns . . .

dang ol' Capt. Beefheart on dang ol' Music Thing

The 10 commandments for guitarists as put forth by the good cap'n:

http://musicthing.blogspot.com/2007/06/practice-in-front-of-bush-captain.html


Gotta go look for a bush . . .

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

the Monks, more Deni, Nico & the Cramps



If a picture's worth a thousand words, what's a video of guys with monks' haircuts all clustering around one guitar worth? Check it out above & see The Monks on German TV circa '66.

Here's a shortcut to more of those Duets With Deni clips, featuring the likes of Kimberley Rew and Richard Barone.

Dark den mother to all things underground, Nico sings "All Tomorrow's Parties".

The Cramps give a tip of the hat to Marcel Duchamp (I think). In any case, singer Lux Interior is sheathed in red PVC and wearing matching heels (Rrose Selavy?). And guitarist Poison Ivy is her usual bad self (all part of the "cornucopia of sex & horror" that is, well, purportedly her life). They will insist & you will believe: "You've Got Good Taste".

Monday, June 18, 2007

then I'll really love you



Deni Bonet rocks. And makes me laugh.

Evidently, she has a whole big tuneful history I was not clued into, but I've seen her before playing with that guitar playing/harmony singing guy in some movie.

YouTube also has this video of these two performing where Ms. Bonet breaks out her fiddle & the gentleman muso sings. And another, sprinkled with banter.

All very very good stuff.

And all from Ms. Bonet's Duets With Deni TV show.

POSTSCRIPT--More of Deni Bonet & Robyn Hitchcock:

Singing, talking about Robyn's cones.

Here singing "I've Got You Babe".

carpe datum?



Some funny guys who sing & play, the Flight of the Conchords perform "The Humans Are Dead". (Maybe this robot will interface with them.)

Laugh while you have a chance . . .

Sunday, June 17, 2007

advice to more than a few

My friend Bob (who sent me the Miller Williams poem the other day) sent me a cool thing folk singer-songwriter Bob Franke wrote to advise other songwriters out there.

Having strung noise & even some music & words together at times, I rather liked his advice.

But I thought for anyone not literally bothering with such things, the words may still carry some weight:

http://www.bobfranke.com/critical.htm#Advice%20to%20Songwriters

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Joseph Cornell show @ Peabody Essex Museum

http://www.pem.org/exhibitions/exhibition.php?id=60

Joseph Cornell's box constructions and collages make up a big piece of what's great in 20th century American Art.

If you're in Salem MA, you owe it to yourself to see this huge show of his work on exhibit at the Peabody Essex Museum.

It runs through 19 August. Don't let it get away from you.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Wilko Johnson rocks



My friend Mark turned me on to a ton (weighed in as vinyl--literally) of music.

Good music.

And wicked obscure stuff that one might easily namecheck now but was really off the map where & when we grew up (rural southeastern Virginia, circa 1980). Hearing such music then & there (and most places elsewhere outside of a big city or college town), you were listening to what the aliens had beamed in.

Wilko Johnson jamming out in this clip from kk99ll on YouTube is not a household name even now, not on this left bank of the big Atlantic pond.

But folks in the know, like my friend Mark, could tell you Wilko played in Dr. Feelgood and put out his own phenomenal LP, Ice on the Motorway, and such.

And you can see for yourself, even in this short bit of Wilko on guitar, why he has fans aplenty over on the right bank.

What's kinda interesting about this live video (for any guitar-centric viewers esp.) is how it's shot (& miked) right in front of Wilko at the foot of stage. So the rest of the band, even Wilko's own singing sounds a bit distant--it's all reflected sound. Front & center is the sound of his guitar.

on uberkayness--termite control

termite control--us over them, or, um, them over us?

Gene Hackman on CONELRAD



As my wife's a big fan, I thought I'd embed these clips of Gene Hackman in a civil defense movie, courtesy of conelrad.



For more about this movie and other Cold War relics, check out conelrad.com.

Thanks to Derm for letting me know about CONELRAD.

Monday, June 11, 2007

today on uberkayness--turkeys & clover

turkey hen & chicks--more backyard neighbors prevail

rolling in clover--clover blooms and daisies left standing tall, dandelion on the edge of a blue sky

Apaches plural

Much like the video I posted of the Cashmere Jungle Lords back in May, ZeKRuLe on YouTube has a few videos of bands playing "Apache". Here's one of a band playing "Apache" and (forgive my ignorance) another surf instrumental:

Saturday, June 9, 2007

now playing at the Wikipedia lounge

Seems everyone has a Wikipedia entry.

By which I mean, all kinds of cool bands you'd've had to beat up 3 high & mighty record store clerks to drag the names out of. You know, back once upon a time, before irony & information went mainstream.

Looking up the entry for the restaurant chain Appleby's (actually spelled: Applebee's), I instead find Combustible Edison, lounge band extraordinaire.

I haven't really looked up everyone or even every band to see what's there. Accept my anecdotal evidence and these other links as proof:

The noise rockin' Happy Flowers.

The C'ville VA hardcore punk band from whence they emanated: The Landlords.

Okay, that's enough. Now see who you can find.

er, um: let it out

Never been here--not my thing spending 30 or 40 bucks/hr. for a practice or jam space.

All the same, just had to mention JamSpot in Somerville.

Saw it in the final issue of the Middlesex Beat (R.I.P.). Full backcover ad with images of JamSpot doorway and some dude lost in the moment as his guitar not-so-gently weeps. Ad copy reads: Step On In and Let It Out. Kinda bigger than life in that by now thoroughly goofy rockstar way.

But hey, it got me to check out the website and be all impressed ("whoa, like, Richard Thompson and his band totally practiced there"). And write this blog entry.

Now, no louder than I get, I'll stick to playing at home.

But if you're itching to "let it out", or shall we say "play or sing really loud", and you don't live or work near Somerville MA, no big deal. Looks like the JamSpot folks are looking to franchise the idea.

I'm putting mine next to an Applebee's . . .

Friday, June 8, 2007

day eight--unterkayness takes a nap

Groundhogs & coyotes & turkeys (haven't got there yet--another day) & a departed Maine Coon cat. Videos old and new.

Enough for now--check in later. Or check out day one posts . . .

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Jeff Williams aka capo420420



Just being a big fan and oft-time user of drones & suspended chords, I have to post this Jeff Williams video of "SirVibe". But the great rhythmic vibe he creates here with his playing is very cool as well.

You can hear & see more of his acoustic guitar tapping here:

http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=capo420420

Public Bath



One more from the road (that road being Mass. Ave., Cambridge):

The Loved Ones cover Shonen Knife's "Public Bath".

Or avoid the embed's "extra features" & watch it here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=63zTvbLfs8E

Chester Murphy



"The dog remembered him . . ."

Indeed, The Loved Ones return with "Chester Murphy".

Or watch it here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yw2Ei9wLx2A

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Don't Buy This Song



Yet another item in our retro video series: The Loved Ones play their platinum-selling "Don't Buy This Song".

YouTube link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ObnPyiO5klY

Fre-e-e-s-sh Paint!



That is to say: "Fresh Paint" performed by The Loved Ones.

You can read my bad Bullwinkle-inspired puns below or just watch the video.

The players and dramatic personae portrayed herein are:

Dale Kutyna as Blistered N. Dasun, a young man bespeaking need for rejuvenation

Greg Binns as Dunne Wyeth Brushes, one whose comment dispels folly in one fell stroke

yrs truly as Mr. Evilyn Wah, purveyor of cleansing chaos and wavering tonalities


YouTube link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MWwBAjA9OyM

Grass over my grave



Again with the Loved Ones, performing "Grass Over My Grave".

In this ageless classic of man's relation to sod, we have:

Dale Kutyna--strummin' & a-singin'

Greg Binns--hitting stuff & bemoaning fate

yrs truly--electric weed-whacking


On YouTube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qytzuLxAxRI

some stupid with a flare gun

Rock out, y'all--AP story found on AOL:

Top News - 1,683 Guitarists Play 'Smoke on the Water' - AOL News

1,683 Guitarists Play 'Smoke on the Water'

AP
KANSAS CITY, Kansas (June 4) - More than 1,680 guitar players turned out, tuned up and took part in what organizers say was a world record rendition of Deep Purple's "Smoke on the Water" - a song that was the first many of them ever learned.

Some came from as far away as California and Germany on Sunday to take part in a Kansas City radio station's effort to break a Guinness world record for the most people playing the same song simultaneously. The record had been 1,323 people playing the same song in Vancouver, British Columbia, in 1994.

"It was cool to see little kids playing, people who had been playing for their whole lives, like older people, and then I'm sure there were people like me who just picked up the song a couple days before," said Autumn McPherson, of Winfield, a senior at the University of Kansas.

Preliminary numbers show 1,683 people played the popular early '70s guitar riff on Sunday at CommunityAmerica Ballpark.

"I thought it was going to be kind of cheesy," said Hannah Koch, of Prairie Village, who came clad in an elf costume. "But after I got here, I got caught up in the excitement of it."

Tanna Guthrie, a morning show host for KYYS (99.7 FM), came up with the idea for the record attempt. She said her station will send participant sign-up lists, photos, videos and copies of media coverage to Guinness seeking official recognition of a record.

Guthrie said she chose "Smoke on the Water," a track off Deep Purple's "Machine Head" album, because it's one of the first songs many guitarists learn.

"You never know if you can pull something like this off," she said.

One of the participants, John Cardona of Hanford, California, said he brought felt-tip pens so he could get others to sign his guitar.

"It was the guitar I learned on," the 41-year-old said. "It was very dispensable on the way here, but very valuable to me now."

Copyright 2007 The Associated Press. The information contained in the AP news report may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or otherwise distributed without the prior written authority of The Associated Press. All active hyperlinks have been inserted by AOL. 2007-06-05 13:56:55

Eyeballs & Eels



Video of parlor rockers The Loved Ones live at the Middle East upstairs, Cambridge MA, 6 May 1993. Part of a telecast hosted by the Wrong Hero.

Performing here without a safety net (or PA):

Dale Kutyna--singing & strumming

Greg Binns--snare & ride

yrs truly--eelectric guitar


On YouTube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y_65wbxxzyg

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

on uberkayness--Chucky prevails

Video & photo of backyard neighbor, Chucky the woodchuck with young.

Figaro, regal cat with the common touch



As my brother put it: Figaro, beloved friend and Maine Coon cat, died.

Figgy, Big Fig--he went by many names--shared a house with my niece, my sister-in-law & my brother. Fig was 18 years old. A lordly but sweet fellow who'll be missed by many.


Monday, June 4, 2007

Coliseum Mall Flyover to be demolished

My personal take on this can be summed up thusly:

Whoa . . .

Check out the coverage at the SickMalls blog (aka That Mall's Sick And That Store's Dead).

Used to go to Coliseum Mall a bunch as a kid with my mom. The flyover was a distinctive piece of highway then & now. But the mall is gone and the flyover's on its way out.

Demolished malls are the new urban renewal (as in "brown is the new black").

Roger Kizik profile in the Standard-Times

My wife just wrote this profile of painter Roger Kizik for the New Bedford Standard-Times:

SouthCoastToday.com: Roger Kizik imbues 'open-ended' abstracts with playful artistry

Sunday, June 3, 2007

"Francis Bacon" live in '93



Me performing my homage to painter Francis Bacon at the Middle East upstairs, Cambridge MA, 1993.


On YouTube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RJyaHEwbRm0

Roger Linn interview on BBC

Very recommended.  Saw notice of it at good ol' Music Thing--note that this BBC link has a short shelf life (about a week):

http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/musicfeature/pip/obul5/

Words from the man whose drum machine changed the pop music world. We also hear from the many sundry musicians (of which Brian Eno & Jerry Harrison are just two) who've use his machine.

Egypt Lane, alt version



Yes, another version of my homebrew music video. Just putting it up here in unterkayness for now.

What's different?

Changes made in the video in verse three ("Sun's shining down on the bay . . ."). A shot inserted to break up the long shot there.


YouTube link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vcp0PKdCufE

(Day three begins . . . )

Saturday, June 2, 2007

Egypt Lane, again with the . . .



Posted already on uberkayness, I've posted it again here: the video I created for my song "Egypt Lane".

Lots of Super-8 film (some of it shot in rather laborious ways like stop-action animation or time lapse--some of it hand-treated with chemicals & ink) was transferred with loud cranky projectors to video and later edited with some basic software that came with my wife's digital point & shoot camera.

So, whatever this is or ain't, after that much effort, you know I'm gonna post here, too.

Check out the uberkayness post for the many thank yous--might see your name there.

YouTube link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NnXMKbSTaL0

good god I love Ask A Ninja



Furthering my career as a shill for the entertainment industry is the above Ask A Ninja interview with Jon Heder and Will Ferrell about their recent movie, Blades of Glory.

Any comedy astrologer will tell you what happens when three such massive planets of talent align.

Jack squat, too often.

But this is as close to a true comedic convergence as any press junket will allow.

(Dang, I forgot to mention Ask A Ninja does a bit with Scott Hamilton at the end. So four massive planets of talent . . . )

None of this make any sense to you?

Well, try viewing more Ask A Ninjas here, maybe check out a Hope Is Emo video or two (featuring Christa Flanagan of MADtv) and see where that leaves you.

Laughing away the pounds (or at least the hours), my psychic says.

Since I love Hope Is Emo, too, let's end things with her:

let them see you sweat

The emailed posts below did pretty well.

AOL likes to add its own ad signatures to the end. And the email contains HTML tags that the Blogger post writing interface find disagreeable. So an okay option for very quick & dirty, but the nip/tuck follow up required to snip out ads and unwanted code makes it less than efficient.

[voice over in heavy tones, ponderous & portentious]
"Day two continues . . ."

the days of wine & backfill

Being that links to neat stuff are a big part of what unterkayness is all about, I thought I'd test things further with this venerable site I might've mentioned before:   U B U W E B :: 365 Days Project

In case the hypertext isn't so hyper:

http://www.ubu.com/outsiders/365/index.html

The 365 Days Project was created one MP3, one day at a time during 2003.  More crazy aural crap than you can ever imagine awaits you there. 

Honestly, it's more than I can even pretend to have sampled.  Maybe 5 or 10 I've heard. 

But rather than say "oh, yeah, you gotta hear this and that and the other", I commission thee to go forth and explore.  Go. Git!

And have fun.

day two begins--remote control

I love saying "day one", "day two". 

It's like I'm a well-paid, well-dressed, -coiffed & -spoken telejournalist who's covering some lone gunman up in a bell tower.  Not to encourage public mayhem of that kind--I detest TV news.  (And those of you unfamiliar with dark humor, I'm no fan of violence either.)

Anyway, I breaking my do it fast rule.

Day two begins and I'm playing with posting via email.

In the event of me actually having something to share with you, tune here for breaking news and other important ephemera.

Friday, June 1, 2007

day one--too good, too long

This is my experiment with blogging in lieu of forwarding emails etc.

Some will say: duh, that's what a blog does--gathers your stuff in one place for folks to read.

But my one true blog, uberkayness, is the public face. If I think someone out in the world might be interested in something that I had some hand in or experienced or documented, it get posted there.

If some 2nd or 3rd hand thing just strikes me as slightly interesting--some online goofyness I'd forward to someone I know--then here it goes in my quick & dirty, get it up/get it out blog, unterkayness.

My inner editor who believes in something approaching syntax and insists on using the dictionary (un PC, non-kid friendly verbal interlude here: spellcheck is for pussies!)--well, that guy can have me at the keys all day making an informal blog posting into an epic event.

Mantra going forward: faster now, say it and go.

the celestial shopping mall

Anita's blog, That Mall's Sick And That Store's Dead, is a elephant burial ground of retail. Or that's what any store or aggregation of stores should hope.

Geographically, it covers the Hampton Roads area of Virginia. Mostly old retail spaces in Hampton & Newport News like the recently mostly demolished Coliseum Mall or the almost completely repurposed Newmarket North Mall/Newmarket Fair/whatever the heck it's called now. More recently there's been coverage of Tower Mall in Portsmouth and so on. And the author also works on the national retail history compendium, deadmalls.com.

The blog's a cool resource with pics and info and links galore. Plus the regular readers there (of which I'm but a half-informed camp follower) are weighing in with their own facts and recollections.

And you can thank (or blame) it for tangentially engendering my blog, uberkayness, which now & then touches on some of the same fading retail/vanishing world turf. (I grew up in the rural outskirts of Hampton Roads during the 1960s & 70s and went to some of the aforementioned malls.). And a bit more tangentially, my wife's painting blog.

Anyway, check it out sometime. If you're not from or familiar with Hampton Roads, you may find a link to something strikingly familiar (but long gone) from your own corner of retail.

the curator

My friend Bob French forwarded me some cool stuff today. One item was the following poem by Miller Williams (Lucinda's dad):


The Curator
by Miller Williams


We thought it would come, we thought the Germans would come,
were almost certain they would. I was thirty-two,
the youngest assistant curator in the country.
I had some good ideas in those days.


Well, what we did was this. We had boxes
precisely built to every size of canvas.
We put the boxes in the basement and waited.


When word came that the Germans were coming in,
we got each painting put in the proper box
and out of Leningrad in less than a week.
They were stored somewhere in southern Russia.


But what we did, you see, besides the boxes
waiting in the basement, which was fine,
a grand idea, you’ll agree, and it saved the art—
but what we did was leave the frames hanging,
so after the war it would be a simple thing
to put the paintings back where they belonged.


Nothing will seem surprised or sad again
compared to those imperious, vacant frames.


Well, the staff stayed on to clean the rubble
after the daily bombardments. We didn’t dream—
You know it lasted nine hundred days.
Much of the roof was lost and snow would lie
sometimes a foot deep on this very floor,
but the walls stood firm and hardly a frame fell.


Here is the story, now, that I want to tell you.
Early one day, a dark December morning,
we came on three young soldiers waiting outside,
pacing and swinging their arms against the cold.
They told us this: in three homes far from here
all dreamed of one day coming to Leningrad
to see the Hermitage, as they supposed
every Soviet citizen dreamed of doing.
Now they had been sent to defend the city,
a turn of fortune the three could hardly believe.


I had to tell them there was nothing to see
but hundreds and hundreds of frames where the paintings had hung.


“Please, sir,” one of them said, “let us see them.”


And so we did. It didn’t seem any stranger
than all of us being here in the first place,
inside such a building, strolling in snow.


We led them around most of the major rooms,
what they could take the time for, wall by wall.
Now and then we stopped and tried to tell them
part of what they would see if they saw the paintings.
I told them how those colors would come together,
described a brushstroke here, a dollop there,
mentioned a model and why she seemed to pout
and why this painter got the roses wrong.


The next day a dozen waited for us,
then thirty or more, gathered in twos and threes.
Each of us took a group in a different direction:
Castagno, Caravaggio, Brueghel, C├ęzanne, Matisse,
Orozco, Manet, da Vinci, Goya, Vermeer,
Picasso, Uccello, your Whistler, Wood, and Gropper.
We pointed to more details about the paintings,
I venture to say, than if we had had them there,
some unexpected use of line or light,
balance or movement, facing the cluster of faces
the same way we’d done it every morning
before the war, but then we didn’t pay
so much attention to what we talked about.
People could see for themselves. As a matter of fact
we’d sometimes said our lines as if they were learned
out of a book, with hardly a look at the paintings.


But now the guide and the listeners paid attention
to everything—the simple differences
between the first and post-impressionists,
romantic and heroic, shade and shadow.


Maybe this was a way to forget the war
a little while. Maybe more than that.
Whatever it was, the people continued to come.
It came to be called The Unseen Collection.


Here. Here is the story I want to tell you.


Slowly, blind people began to come.
A few at first then more of them every morning,
some led and some alone, some swaying a little.
They leaned and listened hard, they screwed their faces,
they seemed to shift their eyes, those that had them,
to see better what was being said.
And a cock of the head. My God, they paid attention.


After the siege was lifted and the Germans left
and the roof was fixed and the paintings were in their places,
the blind never came again. Not like before.
This seems strange, but what I think it was,
they couldn’t see the paintings anymore.
They could still have listened, but the lectures became
a little matter-of-fact. What can I say?
Confluences come when they will and they go away.



CREDITS: Miller Williams, “The Curator” from Adjusting to the Light. Copyright © 1992 by the Curators of the University of Missouri.

[Hopefully, fair use applies here . . . Tho' if I ever sign up for Adsense, all bets are off.]

ConcreteBeat covers NYC street performers

ConcreteBeat could take up the good part of a long lifetime.

The blog's author videos musicians, painters and whatnot performing on the streets of New York City. And he videos on-the-spot interviews with these folks. Tons of cool stuff.

Since you gotta go there to believe it, I'll link you to a couple of examples:

The famous at 15 inventor of plastic bucket drumming, Larry Wright performing with his wife Sonya.

Recent performances of/interview with classically trained violinist, Luellen Abdoo.

Jolene Sugarbaker, the Trailer Park Queen

I ran across Jolene's videos on YouTube.

While cooking is her usual subject (& kinda not my thing), she did a few interviews with artists showing at an Artomatic 2007 event in Northern Virginia:

Michael Torra

Stephanie T. Booth

But my favorite Jolene may be her serenely caffeinated performance on an Omnichord (an electronic simulacrum of an autoharp). Kinda Dolly Parton does Mother Maybelle doing Kraftwerk.

Entering the 21st century by slow degrees, I'll go so far as embed the Jolene on Omnichord video below. Dig out, Miz J!




I'm so glad Les Paul invented the Internet.

today on uberkayness (the one true blog)

Recent view of Egypt Lane on video. Short video shot yesterday of area around Egypt Lane/the Atlas Tack factory. Shows a very different scene than 10 years ago with the factory mostly razed and the marshland excavated as part of an ongoing Superfund cleanup.

Franz Kline cornstalks & other flora. Some more pictures from my May visit to Surry.

you go high, I'll go low

As I have forwarded many an "interesting" email only to cringe soon afterward & question my sanity, I thought I'd try blogging said forwards as posts that will forever clog the Internet and leave many others to cringe in perpetuity. Shelf life be damned; dead links and untimely comments here we come!

Meanwhile, my Jekyll to this Hyde, my now by comparison beloved blog, uberkayness, will continue to put forth anything I think worth the attentions of the public at large. Get thee hither to my one true blog to be saved from this one.