Robert J

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Everything posted by Robert J

  1. Saw this on the Bill Evans webpages. Wow! Some great facts, letters, interviews and piano transcriptions. Here's the link to the pdf - just change the number at the end for each issue (up to 26) http://www2.selu.edu/orgs/34skid/html/1.pdf
  2. Zep reforming?

    I see youtube has "scheduled" maintenance @ 10pm. Perhaps didn't want to deal with the headache of a flood of Zep vids coming in?
  3. Zep reforming?

    the live blogging has begun http://www.nme.com/blog/
  4. Karlheinz Stockhausen R.I.P.

    I first heard him when I was a teen going through my mom's "Enjoyment of Music" LPs. He probably opened me to new music in general.
  5. It's a Wonderful Organissimo Board

    Wow - I've been here since day one (or two?) right after the BNBB demise and it's been a great place to hang. Have to admit I've been much more of a viewer than a participant in the past 2 years, because I feel I've had little to add in general that I've not already contributed at some point. I’ve met a few people offline and have had a few virtual/real beers with others in the chat room. Many here have recommended things to do and see on my vacations – thanks! I don’t think I’ve offended anyone (unless you are offended by an atheist Canadian libertarian) as I’ve never posted in the Politics Forum; life seems too short for me to type anything in there. Though I’ve read some interesting threads in that forum, I’d rather be turned onto new recordings and artists I’ve never listen to before. Thanks to all of you with diverse interests – it has both expanded my taste and diminished my wallet. As an internet producer and writer for several websites during the Organissimo time, I often come here during my day, to see what’s up, and to distract myself (in a good way) from my work when I get stuck and stressed about something. Can’t say that any other current BB does that for me. Jim, my one regret is I’ve still never heard you guys play live. But as someone who has heard many of the same Detroit cats as I have, I hope to some day catch you playing in Michigan, expanding on the tradition of great live music we grew up on. I’ll buy you all a good beer or two. Better yet, hit Toronto! Thanks for the space.
  6. Zep reforming?

    The SCTV Stairway to Heaven commercial. A classic.
  7. Zep reforming?

    My brother just called me - he won 2 of the tickets from the Zep lottery. Still has to pay his way there from Canada, etc.
  8. I'm not around here as often... But, earlier this month I saw Pere Ubu in Toronto. They were on a limited 5 city tour and were absolutely amazing. One of the best concerts I've been to - in any genre. If anyone would like details I can post them later.
  9. Also academically. In a philosophy class at University.
  10. Joe Zawinul hospitalized

    VIENNA (Reuters) - Keyboardist Joe Zawinul, who played with Miles Davis and helped shape jazz fusion with his band Weather Report, died in his native city of Vienna on Tuesday, aged 75. Zawinul, voted best keyboarder 30 times by music magazine Down Beat's critics' poll, including this year, had sought medical attention last month after a tour. He died of a rare form of skin cancer, local news agency APA reported. "Joe Zawinul was born on July 7, 1932 in earth time, and on September 11, 2007 in eternal time. He lives on," APA quoted his son Erich as saying. Growing up in Vienna's poor Erdberg district during Nazi rule, Zawinul first showed his talent by playing the accordion with his family. He later won a free place in the Vienna Conservatory. As a young man his friends were the late former Austrian President Thomas Klestil and pianist Friedrich Gulda. In 1959, Zawinul won a piano scholarship at Boston's Berklee College of Music, where many careers in contemporary music began, before joining the bands of U.S. jazz stars Dinah Washington and later Cannonball Adderly. Miles Davis first approached the budding pianist in New York's Birdland jazz club, wanting to hire him, Zawinul once told an interviewer. Zawinul turned him down but said that when the time was right, they would make history together. And when the time was right, they did. Ten years later, Zawinul wrote "In a Silent Way," the title cut for Davis' 1969 album regarded as one of the trumpeter's first forays into jazz fusion, a genre drawing on rock, R&B and other styles. He played on and composed for Davis' "Bitches Brew" album in 1970, a chart-topping record considered revolutionary for the day and marking his crossover to a rock and pop audience. Zawinul started Weather Report in 1970 with saxophonist Wayne Shorter. The band did much to bring electric piano, synthesizers, and African and Middle Eastern rhythms to mainstream audiences in a jazz setting. Before its breakup in 1985, Weather Report released 17 albums. Its most famous song, "Birdland," published on the "Heavy Weather" album in 1977, won separate Grammy awards in three decades -- for the original version as well as for covers by Quincy Jones and Manhattan Transfer. Following the break-up of Weather Report, Zawinul had fronted the Zawinul Syndicate for the past 20 years. After the group's tour this summer, he sought medical attention and was admitted to the Wilhelmina Clinic in his native city last month. In 1963, Zawinul married Maxine, the first African-American Playboy bunny, whom he met in the Birdland club too. They mainly lived in Malibu, California. The couple had three children. He also spent a lot of time in Vienna and started his own club there, also called Birdland. He had planned to give a concert in Vienna's concert hall on September 29. Vienna Mayor Michael Haeupl said the musician would be buried in a grave of honor in Vienna. © Reuters 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  11. Joe Zawinul hospitalized

    Very very sad. Joe really got me into electronic keys and I modified my Rhodes sound as a teen based on his early setup. I think WP was in fact my door into "jazz" at the that time. I only saw him once - in 83 with WP - but it inspired me to take on Birdland with a band in grade 12 at the highschool talent show.
  12. I've been Simpsonized!

    Considering the pic I used at work was one of me from my recent European trip. I am getting kind of loaded and bleary-eyed in this Prague beer garden! I look better as a Simpson.
  13. I've been Simpsonized!

    Here's mine!
  14. Wow - just yesterday I posted on Bergman. Italian filmmaker Michelangelo Antonioni dies at 94 The Associated Press Italian director Michelangelo Antonioni, whose depiction of alienation made him a symbol of art-house cinema with movies such as Blow-Up and L'Avventura, has died, officials and news reports said Tuesday. He was 94. The ANSA news agency said that Antonioni died at his home on Monday evening. Italian movie director Michelangelo Antonioni in Venice, Italy, 2002. Antonioni died Monday at the age of 94. (Luca Bruno/Associated Press) "With Antonioni dies not only one of the greatest directors but also a master of modernity," Rome Mayor Walter Veltroni said in a statement. Antonioni depicted alienation in the modern world through sparse dialogue and long takes. Along with Federico Fellini, he helped turn post-war Italian film away from the Neorealism movement and toward a personal cinema of imagination. In 1995, Hollywood honoured his career work — about 25 films and several screenplays — with a special Oscar for lifetime achievement. By then Antonioni was a physically frail but mentally sharp 82, unable to speak but a few words because of a stroke but still translating his vision into film. The Oscar was stolen from Antonioni's home in 1996, together with several other film prizes. His exploration of such intellectual themes as alienation and existential malaise led Halliwell's Film Guide to say that L'Avventura, Antonioni's first critical success, made him "a hero of the highbrows." The critics loved that film, but the audience hissed when L'Avventura was presented at the 1960 Cannes Film Festival. The barest of plots, which wanders through a love affair of a couple, frustrated many viewers for its lack of action and dialogue, characteristically Antonioni. At one point in the black-and-white film, the camera lingers and lingers on Monica Vitti, one of Antonioni's favourite actresses, as she plays a blond, restless jet-setter. Explored characters' internal turmoil "In the empty, silent spaces of the world, he has found metaphors that illuminate the silent places our hearts, and found in them, too, a strange and terrible beauty: austere, elegant, enigmatic, haunting," Jack Nicholson said in presenting Antonioni with the career Oscar. Nicholson starred in the director's 1975 film The Passenger. Antonioni was born on Sept. 29, 1912, in the affluent northern city of Ferrara. He received a university degree in economics and soon began writing critiques for cinema magazines. Antonioni's first feature film, Story of a Love Affair (1950) was a tale of two lovers unable to cope with the ties binding them to their private lives. But Antonioni grew more interested in depicting his characters' internal turmoil rather than their daily, down-to-earth troubles. The shift induced critics to call his cinema "internal Neorealism." After the international critical acclaim of L'Avventura, which became part of a trilogy with The Night (1961) and Eclipse (1962), Antonioni's style was established. He steadily co-wrote his films and directed them with the recognizable touch of a painter. His signature was a unique look into people's frustrating inability to communicate and assert themselves in society. Blow-Up first box-office success On Oscar award night, his wife, Enrica Fico, 41 years his junior, and "translator" for him since his 1985 stroke, said, "Michelangelo always went beyond words, to meet silence, the mystery and power of silence." The first success at the box office came in 1966 with Blow-Up, about London in the swinging '60s and a photographer who accidentally captures a murder on film. But Antonioni with his hard-to-fathom films generally found it hard to convince Italian producers to back him. By the end of the 1960s, he was looking abroad for funds. American backing helped produce Zabriskie Point (1970), shot in the bleakly carved landscape of Death Valley, California. Asked by an Italian magazine in 1980, "For whom do you make films" Antonioni replied: "I do it for it an ideal spectator who is this very director. I could never do something against my tastes to meet the public. Frankly, I can't do it, even if so many directors do so. And then, what public? Italian? American? Japanese? French? British? Australian? They're all different from each other." Funeral in hometown of Ferrarra, Italy Using sometimes a notepad, sometimes the good communication he had with his wife and sometimes just his very expressive blue eyes, Antonioni astonished the film world by making Beyond the Clouds in 1994, while ailing and hampered by the effects of the stroke. With an international cast — John Malkovich, Jeremy Irons, Irene Jacob, and Fanny Ardant — the movie wove together three episodes based on Antonioni's book of short stories Quel Bowling sul Tevere (Bowling on the Tiber) to explore the usual Antonioni themes. Worried that Antonioni would be too frail to finish the movie, investors had German director Wim Wenders follow the work, ready to step in if the Italian "maestro" couldn't go on. But Wenders wound up watching in awe and letting Antonioni put his vision on film. Antonioni is survived by his wife. He had no children. ANSA said that a funeral would be held Thursday in Antonioni's hometown of Ferrara in northern Italy.
  15. STOCKHOLM — Swedish director Ingmar Bergman, an iconoclastic filmmaker widely regarded as one of the great masters of modern cinema, has died, local media reported Monday. He was 89 years old. Bergman died at his home in Faro, Sweden, Swedish news agency TT said, citing his daughter Eva Bergman. Through more than 50 films, Bergman's vision encompassed all the extremes of his beloved Sweden: the claustrophobic gloom of unending winter nights, the gentle merriment of glowing summer evenings and the bleak magnificence of the island where he spent his last years. Bergman, who approached difficult subjects such as plague and madness with inventive technique and carefully honed writing, became one of the towering figures of serious filmmaking. He was "probably the greatest film artist, all things considered, since the invention of the motion picture camera," Woody Allen said in a 70th birthday tribute in 1988. Bergman first gained international attention with 1955's Smiles of a Summer Night, a romantic comedy that inspired the Stephen Sondheim musical A Little Night Music. The Seventh Seal, released in 1957, riveted critics and audiences. An allegorical tale of the medieval Black Plague years, it contains one of cinema's most famous scenes — a knight playing chess with the shrouded figure of Death. "I was terribly scared of death," Bergman said of his state of mind when making the film, which was nominated for an Academy Award in the best picture category. The film distilled the essence of Bergman's work — high seriousness, flashes of unexpected humour and striking images. In an interview in 2004 with Swedish broadcaster SVT, the reclusive filmmaker admitted that he was reluctant to view his work. "I don't watch my own films very often. I become so jittery and ready to cry ... and miserable. I think it's awful," Bergman said. Though best known internationally for his films, Bergman was also a prominent stage director. He worked at several playhouses in Sweden from the mid-1940s, including the Royal Dramatic Theatre in Stockholm which he headed from 1963 to 1966. He staged many plays by the Swedish author August Strindberg, whom he cited as an inspiration. The influence of Strindberg's gruelling and precise psychological dissections could be seen in the production that brought Bergman an even-wider audience: 1973's Scenes From a Marriage. First produced as a six-part series for television, then released in a theatre version, it is an intense detailing of the disintegration of a marriage. Bergman showed his lighter side in the following year's The Magic Flute, again first produced for TV. It is a fairly straight production of the Mozart opera, enlivened by touches such as repeatedly showing the face of a young girl watching the opera and comically clumsy props and costumes. Bergman remained active later in life with stage productions and occasional TV shows. He said he still felt a need to direct, although he had no plans to make another feature film. In the fall of 2002, Bergman, at age 84, started production on Saraband, a 120-minute television movie based on the two main characters in Scenes From a Marriage. In a rare press conference, the reclusive director said he wrote the story after realizing he was "pregnant with a play." "At first I felt sick, very sick. It was strange. Like Abraham and Sarah, who suddenly realized she was pregnant," he said, referring to biblical characters. "It was lots of fun, suddenly to feel this urge returning." The son of a Lutheran clergyman and a housewife, Ernst Ingmar Bergman was born in Uppsala on July 14, 1918, and grew up with a brother and sister in a household of severe discipline that he described in painful detail in the autobiography The Magic Lantern. The title comes from his childhood, when his brother got a "magic lantern" — a precursor of the slide-projector — for Christmas. Ingmar was consumed with jealousy, and he managed to acquire the object of his desire by trading it for a hundred tin soldiers. The apparatus was a spot of joy in an often-cruel young life. Bergman recounted the horror of being locked in a closet and the humiliation of being made to wear a skirt as punishment for wetting his pants. He broke with his parents at 19 and remained aloof from them, but later in life sought to understand them. The story of their lives was told in the television film Sunday's Child, directed by his own son Daniel. Young Ingmar found his love for drama production early in life. The director said he had coped with the authoritarian environment of his childhood by living in a world of fantasies. When he first saw a movie he was greatly moved. "Sixty years have passed, nothing has changed, it's still the same fever," he wrote of his passion for film in the 1987 autobiography. But he said the escape into another world went so far that it took him years to tell reality from fantasy, and Bergman repeatedly described his life as a constant fight against demons, also reflected in his work. The demons sometimes drove him to great art — as in Cries and Whispers, the deathbed drama that climaxes when the dying woman cries "I am dead, but I can't leave you." Sometimes they drove him over the top, as in Hour of the Wolf where a nightmare-plagued artist meets real-life demons on a lonely island. Bergman also waged a fight against real-life tormentors: Sweden's powerful tax authorities. In 1976, during a rehearsal at the Royal Dramatic Theatre, police came to take Bergman away for interrogation about tax evasion. The director, who had left all finances to be handled by a lawyer, was questioned for hours while his home was searched. When released, he was forbidden to leave the country. The case caused an enormous uproar in the media and Bergman had a mental breakdown that sent him to hospital for over a month. He was later absolved of all accusations and in the end only had to pay some extra taxes. In his autobiography he admitted to guilt in only one aspect: "I signed papers that I didn't read, even less understood." The experience made him go into voluntary exile in Germany, to the embarrassment of the Swedish authorities. After nine years, he returned to Stockholm, his long-time base. It was in the Swedish capital that Bergman broke into the world of drama, starting with a menial job at the Royal Opera House after dropping out of college. In 1942, Bergman was hired by the script department of Swedish Film Industry, the country's main production company, as an assistant script writer. In 1944 his first original screenplay was filmed by Alf Sjoeberg, the dominant Swedish film director of the time. Torment won several awards including the Grand Prize of the 1946 Cannes Film Festival, and soon Bergman was directing an average of two films a year as well as working with stage production. After the acclaimed The Seventh Seal, he quickly came up with another success in Wild Strawberries, in which an elderly professor's car trip to pick up an award is interspersed with dreams. Other noted films include Persona, about an actress and her nurse whose identities seem to merge, and The Autumn Sonata, about a concert pianist and her two daughters, one severely handicapped and the other burdened by her child's drowning.
  16. what cant you skimp on?

    Beer - the good stuff. No one should pass their lives drinking swill if they can avoid it. [not a critique of US beer - when I visit the States I regularly see microbeers cheaper than Coors or Shlitz]
  17. Phineas Newborn

    Jazz Scene USA Youtube has a few excerpts from this Oleo Lush Life Theme For Basie The New Blues Left Hand Blues (answering David's question)
  18. Barry Harris

    I also recommend all the Xanadu's. A great listening experience and nice sound. Of course, I still spend time with Barry every night - http://www.jazzworkshops.com/order.html
  19. The White Stripes - Icky Thump

    And they are nice people as well... White Stripes rock Toronto daycare Jul 06, 2007 07:06 AM Karen Pinchin Canadian press Alt-rock duo the White Stripes thrilled dozens of children at a Toronto day camp Thursday afternoon with an impromptu gig that had the youngsters clapping their hands and wriggling in time to the music. More than 65 children between the ages of five and 12 sat in a semi-circle on the floor to catch a five-song set by bandmates Jack White and Meg White. About 80 adults were allowed in the room, including some fans who talked their way through the door. "This is my fifth year here and something like this has never happened before," said 11-year-old Camille, waving his hands for emphasis. "When I saw them perform I was like, 'Wow, I really need to download these songs when I get home."' Adult fans who had heard about the show by word of mouth, text messages and on websites rushed to the downtown YMCA, where the show was held. Most were turned away by security, who said the concert was just for kids. Some 100 people, dressed in the band's red, white and black trademark colours, stood grumbling in a hall outside the auditorium and out on the street. The daycamp show was just the latest in a series of last-minute gigs the Detroit duo has offered before their Canadian concerts. Each time, they've relied primarily on their Internet fansite to spread the word, giving as little as 20 minutes' notice for the unorthodox appearances. On Monday, the pair surprised Winnipeggers with a performance on a city bus and a downtown bridge. Over the weekend, a Saskatoon bowling alley was the unconventional stage for a 15-minute set and the previous weekend, it was a community centre in Edmonton where 100 fans were treated to a free show. But the 30-minute Toronto show was likely played before their youngest audience yet. "I'm positive that 90 per cent of these kids don't know who they are, but I think they really got a kick out of it," said Ian Campbell, who works for the daycamp. YMCA spokesman Jamie Slater said he thought it was a prank when the band's manager contacted him about the show Thursday morning. "At first I thought they were joking," said Slater. "Once I found out that they were serious, I asked them why they chose the Toronto YMCA, and their manager, Gabe, told me he searched the words 'Toronto' and 'fun' on the Internet." The band is touring Canada in support of their latest album, ``Icky Thump," and Slater said they asked to play for the camp because they wanted to reach a younger audience. One child was lucky enough to be called up to sing a part of the R&B song "I Believe I Can Fly." "I was very nervous," said eight-year-old Dylan. "I'll tell my brother I sang in a rock band and there was a band in the YMCA and that's all."
  20. Happy Birthday Robert J!

    Also involved was a large 750ml bottle of Leffe from the corner store (2,40 euro)
  21. Happy Birthday Robert J!

    Thanks all - sorry on the response delay, but I just got back from a European trip and now am online at work In brief: I was in Paris with my wife on my birthday. It also involved a trip up the Eiffel Tower, a long walk along the Seine, Belgian beer and mussels on the Left Bank and a great French meal near the Opera. An awesome way to spend my 40th birthday!
  22. Maybe I can now afford some new gear Loonie at par by year's end? Globe and Mail June 1, 2007 at 9:55 AM EDT The Canadian dollar will hit parity by the end of this year, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce predicted Friday. Talk of parity has percolated in the past month, but this is the first time a major bank has speculated it would arrive so soon. The last time the loonie traded at par was March, 1975. The comment comes as the Canadian dollar hovers at a 30-year high, driven by takeover activity, strong economic growth and expectations of rising interest rates. On Friday, the currency traded at 93.83 cents (U.S.), its highest level since July, 1977. “Between red-hot commodity and energy markets and huge capital inflows associated with an avalanche of M&A deals, the Canadian currency has plenty of octane left to take a concerted run toward parity against the greenback and hold it into at least the first quarter of 2008,” said Jeff Rubin, chief strategist and chief economist at CIBC World Markets. Continental Divide: Why Canada rocks as U.S. stalls Not everyone thinks that will happen so soon though. Bank of Nova Scotia, which for years has been forecasting Canadian dollar strength, isn't trotting out the parity prediction just yet. “I don't think we have quite all the factors in place yet to see parity,” said Camilla Sutton, currency strategist at the Bank of Nova Scotia. Namely, oil prices have remained steady. “With that moderation in commodities versus how the Canadian dollar's moved, that could end up being a bit of a weight on the Canadian dollar as we move forward.” She see a steady appreciation this year and next, but doesn't see the currency at par any time soon. Nor does the Royal Bank of Canada, which earlier this week boosted its forecast to 96 cents. “While parity is garnering more attention, it is not part of our base scenario as commodities are unlikely to stage a strong rally from current levels,” the bank said. Takeover talk heated up Friday with the Globe and Mail reporting that Stelco Inc. is up for sale, amid a flurry of foreign acquisitions of Canadian steel companies. Foreign takeovers tend to boost the loonie because they increase demand for dollars. Hostile bids are growing, CIBC said, and that means greater premiums. The premium on hostile deals has averaged 35 per cent over the last year compared to just 21 per cent for friendly takeovers, it said. Mr. Rubin's call comes after a report yesterday showed Canadian economic growth more than doubled in the first quarter, rising a better-than-expected 3.7 per cent. That growth, combined with a pickup in inflation, prompted the Bank of Canada this week to say interest rates may head higher as early as July. “With the national jobless rate plumbing 30-year lows and core inflation now bobbing above the Bank of Canada's target range, our earlier assumption of the Bank of Canada intervening against a further rise in the Canadian dollar with rate cuts, no longer seems tenable,” Mr. Rubin said. The currency has risen 9.4 per cent this year and 43.4 per cent over the past five years. Prime Minister Stephen Harper said Thursday any attempt to intervene with the strong dollar to save manufacturing jobs would be a “huge mistake,” Bloomberg News reported. “The rising Canadian dollar is a reflection of the underlying strength of the Canadian economy,” Mr. Harper told the news agency in an interview. The comment comes as the lofty loonie has sparked concern among some industries that it will prompt plants closures and layoffs.
  23. King Herod's tomb found

    They also unearthed the image of Herod in the tomb:
  24. Amsterdam?

    Robert, my guess is that you'll have a good 'ol time in there. It's packed with fine brews. Here are a couple of pics. When I was in there, the owner was restocking....had multiple cases sitting about. He's a long haired Irish dude....had to be stoned...but definitely knowledgeable. Directly across the alley is Gollem which is a must see/must drink spot. Seemed to be mostly locals. Hendrix' 'Crosstown Traffic' was playing as I counted 39 bodies crammed in there (including the 2nd level located up 5 creaky steps with 3 good sized tables)....and 35 of us were smoking -- so you'll want to bring your Camels. Highly recommended! I will be there for sure! I've warned the misses that Amsterdam will by my 2 days of living it up. Hope my hotel has a mini-fridge to keep em cool, cause I doubt I'll take beer bottles on my flight to Paris.
  25. Great news for fans of the Minutemen

    This Ain't No Picnic check out Ronald Reagan in this one!