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Dan Gould

Blindfold Test #1 - Discussion

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Ladies and Gentlemen, the inaugural Organissimo Blindfold Test has left the building!

Fortunately for all concerned, Dr. J. provided enough $$ that no further assistance will be needed, unless there are latecomers inspired by this announcement.

Daniel A. still needs to provide me his mailing address.

Just in case I somehow missed someone, the following members have discs en route:

Peter Johnson

JSangrey

relyles

pryan

Rooster Ties

JimR.

Noj

b3-er

Jim Dye

Jazzmoose

couw

Brad

Gary

Initial discussion will go in this thread. After approximately two weeks, Dr. J. will post the answers in a new thread "Blindfold Test #1 - Answers and Further Discussion" so that people who are slow to take the "test" can still post without inadvertently finding out the answers.

Use or B3-er, perhaps we need a new Forum for the Blindfold Tests?

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I'm really looking forward to this, guys.

Thanks for making this happen! :tup

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Yee-haw!

I've already made a first draft of my master disc. :excited::eye::w

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I'd like to listen too, but mail sent to Podunk Hollar never seems to arrive. :D

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Got mine (BFT#1) in the mail a couple hours ago, and popped it right in.

I think I've about got it all figured out, except I'm having some trouble with the bass player on track 4, and the drummer on track 7. And oh - is there a harmonica burried way down in the mix on track 11?? I'm having some trouble with that one too. Other than that, I think I've got it all figured out....

But I guess I should keep the line-ups of each track to myself, until everyone else has a chance to weigh in. Wouldn't want to spoil the fun of everyone having to guess for themselves!! ^_^

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And I thought I'd be the first :)

Oh well, unlike Rooster, this disc pretty much threw me, big time. I've listened a couple of times, and my evaluations haven't changed, so here goes. Hope everyone else does better than I did:

1. Solo guitar track-sounds like an old recording but I have little to no clue. The obvious "name" would be Charlie Christian but really that's just a name to throw out. It was just OK-2.5 stars.

2. Goin for some bop here, I'm thinking JJ on trombone. Liked this one a bit more, 3.5 stars.

3. This tune was familiar to me but I couldn't place it. The altoist I thought of was Stitt. Also 3.5 stars.

4. Weird tune! Goes from pastoral to bordering on frantic, nary the slightest clue. 3 stars.

5. On this bopper, on the second pass, I started to wonder if this was '50s era Hank though I surely couldn't place it. 3.5 stars.

6. The piano trio tune was pretty, though not my cup of tea necessarily. After all I am the former GHF. 3 stars.

7. I dug tune number seven with the latin tinge. Maybe Jackie Mac or his descendants? I don't think its Jackie because the tone wasn't quite as sharp. 3.5 stars.

8. Hey, finally a tune I recognize! :) "How High The Moon". Unfortunately, jazz violin ain't my bag. The obvious "name" would be Grappelli but who knows? 2.5 stars.

9. I'm guessing this one was a 70s or later recording. Other than that, nary a clue and also not my bag especially. 2.5 stars.

10. The big band cut-was it Lovano on tenor? Pretty good-3 stars.

11. My notes say "no clue" "really no clue" so I'll summarize by saying "no clue". I did like it though-3.5 stars.

12. My first instinct said that this is one of Bobby Hutcherson's "HAAG" dates (Half-Assed Avante Guard for those unfamiliar with the Lon-coined expression) but then I started to wonder whether its from one of the more progressive Blue Note artists of the last few years-you know, the guy's Rooster likes ;) Oh yeah, 2.5 stars.

13. Once again, nary a clue, three stars for the performance.

14. On first listen, I thought I recognized it as a Monk tune, and to whatever credit I deserve, on second listen, I grabbed the "Town Hall" recording and immediately ID'd it as "Little Rootie Tootie". Not Monk though. That's the artist I'm identifying-the universe of Not Monk. I figure I got a pretty good shot at being right. 3 stars.

So, like I said, very tough, some tunes were good, some tunes less so, but none made me want to set the CD back and listen again.

Edited by Dan Gould

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Received my disc in the mail today and am digesting it as we speak. I'll just say now that I'm really, really digging the selections. Nice work, Tony. I'll post my thoughts sometime this holiday weekend.

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Glad to see the discussion beginning! Interesting comments already. I'm out of town next couple of days, taking the baby to visit great grandparents, but will be back Sunday evening and will check in again then. But it hardly matters, 'cause mum's the word from me for another couple weeks...

PS - OK, A HINT: Rooster Ties, there's no harmonica buried on track 11 but if you spin the disc backwards on a turntable, you can hear someone whispering "Turn Me On, Supa Groover"...

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Okay, guys, here's the deal. I'm not going to know anything about any of this stuff! Okay, I recognize "How High the Moon", and if the last track isn't written by Monk, I'll just go and join the Kenny G. BB as penance, but other than that, forget it. I will at last stand revealed (for those who didn't already know) as one of the least knowledgable jazz fans here. So I'm just in this for my own greedy purposes. For example, when I find out who these people are, at least four of them, possibly six, are on the want list immediately! Anyway, here's my neophyte's notes...

Track 1: I'm thinking this is someone who was fully developed before Charlie Christian came along and influenced everyone, but I have no idea who. In order to completely embarrass myself and throuw at least one name out, I'll go with Eddie Lang. No? Van Eps? Hell...I don't know. It's got to be damned early though, it sounds at times more like a banjo than a guitar.

Track 2: Nice to hear a 'bone running things. Something about this track screams West Coast to me, but I don't know why, and don't know who.

Track 3: Yeah! The Real Deal!! This is the stuff I dig, naturally but I'm too damned ignorant to know who it is. The name Sonny Rollins popped up in my head, but I don't know why, and I'm sure I'm wrong. DrJ, if this is out of print, I'll never forgive you, 'cause I gotta have it!

Track 4: Another one that sounds very West Coastish to me, but in this case, I know why: the instrumentation. A very nice performance; love the trumpet and flute solos, but in the end, it just doesn't grab me the way the previous track did.

Track 5: Wow. Another great sax. Again, I don't know who, but I like. (You guys thought I was kidding when I started out pleading ignorance, didn' you?)

Track 6: I can't remember who it was that described jazz as the "art of surprise", but that phrase came to mind as I listened to this. The pianist messed with my head just enough to make this an enjoyable track. I must admit, though, that I enjoyed the intro more than the main body of the tune...

Track 7: Dan, Jackie's name popped into my head early in the song as well, but I think it's someone later because the tone just didn't seem quite right. What I want to know is who the hell is this piano player! I'd love to hear the sax player from track 3 jamming with this pianist. (I can just imagine the laughter from those of you who know who they are; my guess is they've probably performed together plenty, but who knows... :g ) This one is definitely on my "must get" list.

Track 8: Bless you, DrJ...it was kind of you to throw us a bone so even I could figure out the name of a tune! I don't know who these people are, but the player on the right just has to be a Bob Wills fan; I could swear I was hearing Western Swing at times. I don't know if I'd ever get this or not, but right now I'm damned curious about it!

Track 9: I'll pass on this one. The guitar is okay, but doesn't really grab me. The organ is cool, but not enough to carry the performance. And the drum solo reminded me of why I don't like drum solos. (Probably a favorite drummer of mine, with my luck, right?)

Track 10: DAMN this band is tight! Yeah!!! Make that a HELL YEAH!! I have no idea who this is (can you guys just assume that from now on; I'm getting tired of typing it!) but as a probably embarrassing guess, I'll go with the Thad Jones/Mel Lewis Big Band. Excellent all around; gotta have it!!

Track 11: Another favorite on the disc; I really like this one as well. Stand outs for me: the trumpet is awesome, and the bass player really shines. I'm not normally that high on bass solos either, but this one I like.

Track 12: Reminds me of some of Mingus' stuff, but again (all together now!) IDNWII. Nice percussion, and the piano is really cool. When I asked for recommendations for Avante Garde and Free Jazz months ago on the board, this is NOT the type of thing I was asking about, because this stuff I already dig. This one will probably make my "get it" list.

Track 13: This one just doesn't work for me. As a guess, I want to say Joshua Redman, but blah blah blah. Just seems kind of bland to me.

Track 14: Gotta be a Monk tune, and a good one to close with. I have to admit, though, that I have trouble listening to Monk tunes by other artists. I get really itchy and want to run to the shelves and grab a Monk CD and here the original (or one of them at least)

A great selection of tunes, and I really enjoyed listening to these. I'll be checking them out again; these are just initial thoughts on the first play. I wanted to go ahead and post my comments, because if I wait until Lon or Jim or someone posts , I'll never get up the nerve! :g I can't wait to find out who these people are, not to check my guesses (I'll never look at those again; it'll be too embarrassing!), but just to find out.

I think the best thing about this new idea for me is the opportunity to check out music I'm unfamiliar with without knowing in advance if I'm supposed to like it or not, if you know what I mean. Great idea, guys!! :tup

Edited by Jazzmoose

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Damn fine stuff overall, and I really appreciated the QUALITY compositions compiled here. Plenty of meat just in the tunes! I'm going to want some of these albums in full, for sure. Very little in the way of obvious in terms of players, too. Many instances of "familar, but not readily so", and those make for the best (and most frustrrating) Blindfold Tests. I'll leave out the one cut I already knew, take a few stabs, and probably miss miserably....

1 = Eddie Lang? Sounds like a polished player w/excellent facilty AND a good feel. Lang is the only name who comes to mind, which exposes my lack of knowledge about this kind of stuff.

2 - JJ, most likely. Sounds like his playing and writing. My guess is the Columbia session w/Bobby Jasper, Flanagan, & Elvin. I hear residual Columbia studio sound. I had no problem reconciling any of these players with what I heard, but Elvin took some serious convincing. But the drummers time had that rolling, stumbling over itself while still being perfectly in the pocket quality that virtually defines Elvin, even though nothing he actually plays does, so operating on the premise that a leopard can change his spots but not his DNA, I'll make this my final answer, Regis.

3 - Either the remastering or the original recording plays tricks here, because the tone on the opening head SURE sounds like Dexter. But it's not. "Perdido" changes, with a hipass melody, especially the bridge's melody/chord relations. Rockin' drum fills, almost New Orlean-y. The tenorist does indeed have a Rollins-esque quality to his lines, but there's a certain tonal quality in spots that I associate with Frank Foster of this era. That would be my best guess, but there's more than a few things along the way that aren't really Foster-esque, so I doubt that my best is good enough. That little vibrato on the ends of notes sounds familiar, but not enough to ring a bell...

4 - Ok, this one I knew. The Big Jazz. Kilometers between Locomotives in the Timbers. What are you doing, jitterbugging the rest of your life? It's 3/4 over, you know.

5 - Sounds like Tubby Hayes to me - Griffiny energy combined w/Mobleyey tone, chops out the wazzoo, and an aversion to breathing (usually annoying as hell, but quite invgorating when done right, and this cat does it right). I think I might have this, if it's on the Columbia CD, but it's been almost 10 years since I listened to that, and I can't find it on my shelves right now, so maybe not. The tune sounds kinda like "He's My Guy", but not consisently so.

6 - Jaki Byard? Early Abdullah Ibrahim, maybe (not)? Beautiful tune, and the drummer does a nice job of shadowing the triplets in the melody. Lovely performance, great tune. Is this another "trick" Elvin gig? It doesn't SOUND like Elvin, but it FEELS like him...

7 - First few notes sound like Sonny Fortune, but it's not. I'll guess Leo Wright, Robin Kenyatta, or Pony Poindexter, in that order. I could maybe bit on Bunky Green if I was drunk enough, but....no. LOVE the cat's tone, which is roughly Spaulding-esque, but not even remotely close enough to tempt me into guessing him. Great piece, great players, I want this. Sounds like an Atlantic recording, for whatever that's worth...

8 - Stuff Smith is one, I think, the one I like better. Is that Jo Jones on drums?Almost sounds like OP on piano... No surprises, just goodness, and I can be down with that most every time.

9 - I could go for Pat Martino, maybe, maybe not. I'm digging the organist more, though. Nice tune, the way it goes through various sections, and he/she reminds me of Eddy Louiss in doing so. Pretty interesting for me.

10 - Akioshi/Tabackin? Sounds like a Califronia band and recording, the alto has enough residual Koniz-isms to qualify as Gary Foster, and why else would the tenor just play the melody and not solo? Besides, it sounds like Lew, and it sounds like Toshiko's writing. Not familiar with this particular item, though, inless I heard it back int the 70s and have it on file subconsciously. This is a VERY nice piece - the voicings totally knock me out, especially in the saxes during the solo backgrounds. If this is indeed Foster, I'm usually left limp with disintrest by his playing, but this one really caught my ear. Great chart, great playing, and who's the trumpet soloist? Did i say how great this one was?

11 - Joe. Van Gelder. Is this from Cindy Blackman's Muse debut? If so, what the hell happened to Wallace Roney over the years? If not, then what hell happened to Wallace Roney over the years anyway?

12 - Grunting vibist means Dave Pike in my book. But this is marimba, I thnk, not vibes, and this doesn't sound like Dave Pike. I dunno.. something funny about the free sections. Plenty of logic to them, but maybe TOO much, if you get my drift...

13 - Don't care for this. Too "ECM-ish", in the stereotypical way, for my inclinations. Good players all, but the soprano player's tone REALLY bugs me, and not just the vibrato. Seems TOO "sincere"... But everybody's playing, so if I don't get into it, it's not their fault.

14 - Little Rootie Tootie. This piece reminds me of a drummer I used to play Monk pieces with in duet many years ago. We did it 2-3 times a week for about 2 years. He's be wanting to do all these DIFFERENT things to them from jumpstreet, and I told him to let's just learn the shit straight and then fuck with it, so we'd know what it is we're fucking with. These guys should do that - get a little deeper into the striaght tune, becsue I feel that they lose the essence of the piece more ofhten than they get it. I don't care how out you wanna go, but if you're going to play a Monk tune, go out in relation to that tune. And this isn't really out, this trio, it's just, uh, unnecessary. Seems to get all Monk's playfulness and none of his gravity. Gotta have both. GOT to have both. But that's just me.

Since I folded, do I get a home edition of the game to go with my lovely parting gifts?

Seriuosly, great selections (even the ones I presonally didn't care for). Let's play again.

Edited by JSngry

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Got my disc today (Saturday), and after a full day of activities, I'm just getting a chance to spin this sucker. First of all, this is FUN. Thanks Tony, and Dan. I was expecting this to be pretty frustrating, but I'm finding that even the things that are completely stumping me are not really "frustrating" me. Actually, the most frustrating thing is hearing something that's very familiar, and I know I OWN it, but I can't quite put my finger on it.

1. Despite the fact that I'm a longtime jazz guitar enthusiast, this is a little "before my time" in terms of the scope of my serious interest. This track struck me as almost "country" in style and rhythm... somewhat rural sounding at times. Then again, there's some pretty hip shit going on here too in terms of chords and technique, which I'm sure must have been an eye-opener for a lot of budding guitarists of the day. At any rate, I'm going to bail, rather than taking a shot in the dark on this.

2. I'm about 98% sure I know this one, so I won't comment.

3. I feel like I'm very warm here (pretty sure I own this), but I'm doubting myself somehow about who this is. Will need to listen again tomorrow...

4. Recognized this recording immediately. One of my favorite "I wish I could play that" tunes. OLD song given a new (at the time) twist. A fairly obscure recording including some pretty well-known (tongue planted firmly in cheek) soloists. No further comment. :)

5. That's a saxophone. DUH! Was this supposed to be HARD? ;) But seriously, I LIKE... but I'm stumped right now. This one may fall into the "Wow- I need to get this" category (if I don't have it already... :w ).

6. Very VERY nice. I can't identify it, but for some reason I feel compelled to guess that it's Jaki Byard (just a wild guess).

7. I dug this one too. Timeless quality to the sound (has an "authentic" 60's feel, but I couldn't swear it dates to the 60's). Right now my brain is simply saying "Move on- it's getting late".

8. I am SO tempted to go to Google. :huh: I don't think I own this, and in fact I own very little in the way of violin battles. Stuff? and...? I don't think Stephane was involved here... Ray Nance? I dunno!

9. Instant recognition. I'm a virtual completeist when it comes to this guitarist.

10. No clue, really. Very nice writing.

11. Damn... I'm sure I'm going to kick myself on this one. The tenor sounds like Joe H... and... my brain hurts.

12. ... no idea...

13. Pretty tune... don't know the soprano player... guitarist sounds Methenyesque in terms of sound... out of my realm, frankly...

14. I too recognized the tune as Little Rootie Tootie, but I'm stumped on the pianist. I didn't really like the way the head was handled that much, but the piano solo was invigorating.

========

[Edit] Wow, that post took me awhile. I actually started it before Jim had posted! :wacko:

Edited by Jim R

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OK, now I'm confused. If we know who it is, we just say that we know? Yo no comprendo. I thought the idea is to put out the answer, known or guessed. Not to wait til Tony announces the answers and then say, "yup, that's who I knew it was." I mean, I think everyone has the integrity to post their own comments, not wait til they get the opinions of others and then use them as a crib sheet.

So, Jim, please, don't hold your cards so dang close to your chest!

I call. What you got? ;)

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From my perspective, I think Jim and others are doing this a good way...

If you know who it is on one track, without much of a shadow of a doubt - then early on in the game it's probably good to keep that to yourself. If you're uncertain, or only think you kinda know (but don't know if you know, for sure), then it's good to put your thoughts out there.

I haven't posted my thoughts on the test yet (probably will on Tuesday), but I was planning to do the exact same thing for the few tracks that I am already 98% certain of.

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Rooster, may I ask when you're supposed to reveal your knowledge then? What is the point of keeping it to yourself? I've never seen a real blindfold test subject say "I know who it is but I'm not going to say."

Or, "I know who it is, but if I reveal it, I'd have to kill you." :)

Edited by Dan Gould

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I agree with Dan in that we should just say who we think the person/group is, and not have to wait for the "answers" to be given to us. Just put your honest thoughts out there, and if they're wrong, they're wrong, no big deal. You'll actually learn more from the wrong answers and, perhaps, discover some new artists that you've never really checked out before.

BTW, I still haven't received my disc yet, but am really looking forward to doing this!

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3 - Either the remastering or the original recording plays tricks here, because the tone on the opening head SURE sounds like Dexter. But it's not. "Perdido" changes, with a hipass melody, especially the bridge's melody/chord relations. Rockin' drum fills, almost New Orlean-y. The tenorist does indeed have a Rollins-esque quality to his lines, but there's a certain tonal quality in spots that I associate with Frank Foster of this era. That would be my best guess, but there's more than a few things along the way that aren't really Foster-esque, so I doubt that my best is good enough. That little vibrato on the ends of notes sounds familiar, but not enough to ring a bell...

Jim Sangrey, you are a total dumbass, and you're coming up for review before the Board of Examiners of the Tenor Geeks Association. That's no more Frank Foster than you're Sonny Rollins. It's Wardell Gray.

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Jim Sangrey, you are a total dumbass, and you're coming up for review before the Board of Examiners of the Tenor Geeks Association. That's no more Frank Foster than you're Sonny Rollins. It's Wardell Gray.

Yeah, I realized that this morning. I kept hearing that tone in my head and I KNEW it wasn't Foster.

Please, accept my sincerest apologies.

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4 - Ok, this one I knew. The Big Jazz. Kilometers between Locomotives in the Timbers. What are you doing, jitterbugging the rest of your life? It's 3/4 over, you know.

Hint - The Big Jazz -translate it to French, lterally, in this exact same order. That will give you the album name. Listen to the tenor player again, and know that he was employed by the trumpet player at the time. Then use the rest of the clues in an acrostic-type manner.

One more hint - when you realize who at least two of the featured players are, you're gonna trip that you didn't get them. But don't feel bad. Happens all the time with blindfold tests. The tenor player SHOULD be obvious, but then again, I'm calling Wardell Gray (hope so...) Frank Foster, so who am I to say THAT?

Edited by JSngry

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Dan, I see your point, to a degree. I think that we should identify tracks that we know (100%) eventually (before Tony gives the answers), but I also think that it could make the whole thing a lot less fun if too many of the tracks are identified early in the game (hell- pryan doesn't even have his disc yet). In my case, there are a few that I feel like I might figure out over the next few days, and I am looking forward to the challenge. If somebody had already ID'd them for certain, it would have taken some of the fun out of the game for me. I think we should give it a little time, for those who are in a position to figure out some of the details for certain tracks within a few days or so. Just my opinion- I know some people (my wife, for example) who hate it when somebody withholds info for the sake of a guessing game...

Also, it may be controversial in some ways, but I kind of like the idea of people giving clues instead of the actual answer when they have one nailed (as JS and I did on #4).

Edited by Jim R

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How about this...

If you know (or are 98% sure) about what a track is, then only provide a link to something like the AMG review, or some other source - in order to divulge the answer. I mean, I figured out who track 11 is (both the tenor player and trumpeter), but I'd rather not say who until more people have had a chance to guess some more. (Well, other than maybe to say that Dimtry is a big fan of the trumpeter.)

I think it would be nice to do this is a way where people who are still trying to figure things out can skim this thread, without any actual answers jumping out at them.

It's not very hard to provide a LINK to an answer, without revealing it visually (literally) in the this thread, at least so early in the game.

Just an idea to keep this more fun, while people are still guessing. Open to other ideas, of course. This is a lot of fun!!!!

Edited by Rooster_Ties

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Well, for what its worth, your "clues" are p*ssing me off cause they ain't helpin' ;) !

The thing about this thread, to me, is that people shouldn't be reading others in order to get clues or risk "ruining" the surprise. You get the disc, you listen a few times, you post your comments. Scroll past others comments, or read them carefully, but when you listen, you should jot down notes and then simply report your own impressions, regardless of what others have said ahead of you.

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Allright Dan, this is my last clue about the track I'm 100% certain of.

This guy is the leader of it, but it's not on this album.

c36705x7e0a.jpg

Now, that you got 2/3 of the "translation clue" do the other third (subhint - no translation required!) put the whole thing in quotes, and do a Google or AMG search for the album title.

I'm only being so coy because two of the soloists involed are literally "household names". When you get it, you might feel like ttaking a train ride, because you'll be feeling kinda' blue.

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I haven't read this whole thread, but, why not have everyone directly e-mail Tony their answers and then he can post the answers/comments collectively at a specified time?

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Joe, the deal is that we will discuss here, and in about two weeks, Tony will post the answers in a new thread (so that people who want to post their impressions/guesses in this thread without seeing the answers can.

******

Well, Jim, I never liked puzzles so I took your clue, went to AMG and it took one click after that to figure it all out. Oh well ... didn't give me a eureka moment, just let me learn what it is you're talking about.

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