j lee

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Everything posted by j lee

  1. Fender Rhodes corner

    I thought I'd mention that it's not necessarily that expensive a fix. The full kits from Majorkey or some others are pretty reasonable in US currency (not sure about shipping to the Netherlands, but they probably do quite a bit of business in Europe and elsewhere, given the state of the Rhodes). But, if you think about it, these guys aren't molding their own rubber -- they're buying it from distributors who specialize in this stuff. I mentioned McMasters because my brother-in-law happens to have a bunch of catalogs and stuff for other reasons, but if you can find the specs online (they're out there, and I've seen them, but I can't remember where), you could get this stuff for pennies instead of a hundy or whatever. Probably easier to source it from one of those specialists who cut up the neoprene for you and package it into different hardnesses, or whatever the term is, but if you've got the time, it'd be really cheap to do it yourself with *exactly* the same results.
  2. Fender Rhodes corner

    It *is* a lot of work. While the process is easy, unless you have really small fingers (or a tool which, unlike the dubious "Rhodes tuning tool" sold on ebay and such, actually allows for fine adjustments), you'll need to flip up the harp, adjust, then flip the harp back down to confirm the tuning is correct in normal position. It takes time, and it sounds like your springs might be a bit loose (needing a crimp from a pliers, maybe) if they're getting far out from a short move. Nothing to do with hot temperatures outside, though, I doubt. You'll absolutely need a tuner or a set of references (like a synth or something) if you're at all picky about your instrument being in tune. A strobe tuner -- not a guitar tuner with LEDs that light up -- is expensive, but software can be had for free via TuneLab which works well. Some experienced piano techs use similar to this method, others don't, but it's not really a question of having "good ears" in the sense of being a good musician who can play what they hear -- rather experience understanding the beats and the intervals -- but I've never heard of a Rhodes tech who didn't use a strobe tuner to set the middle range. You'll want to tune *after* setting the harp strikeline, tine/pickup geometry, basically anything, because, well, you'll see. I bet you could do just as good a job or better than any tech out there -- it might take you longer (much!), though. Every afternoon spent on this kind of geeky stuff seems to kill my soul a little, so I never even got around to ordering hammer tips from McMasters or whoever supplies neoprene and all that, but yours sound like maybe it would be worth doing before tuning, to save time, unless you can't afford to have some down time for your instrument between jobs. Of course this is all coming from someone who literally *can't* tune my Wurlitzer -- not enough patience in the world for that kind of BS. If Jim's reading this still, did you paint the top to your Wurli yourself, or was it one of those factory "brick red" ones? I'm thinking about doing my standard black top in red as well -- maybe it will help distract from the crap tuning long enough to find a really good tech who can do a better job than me. I am working on replacing the mains with grounded and thinking about getting a drill and routing output to the front panel, so might as well make it a hat trick as far as non-essential stuff goes.
  3. Bill Evans tribute website

    Seen it before, I think. It's a pretty good fan site -- although I wish there were actual analyses of his music, rather than the little gloss advertised as "analysis" on the front page. I like to see other people's takes on the music, and since pop critics don't have enough knowledge to transcribe and analyze the music they purport to "discuss," it would be nice to see a central site for good articles on an important musician, since a full collection of real music journals is often difficult to find, even at a very good research institution. Back to the stacks at the library for the real thing, I guess. Fun site, however, for the usual gossip.
  4. Help with making CDs....

    I really doubt that the soundcard is causing this problem, unless it's just plain broken. If anything, there's a problem with configuring the software, or the drivers aren't good for the soundcard, or the software isn't capable of handling what you want. If you want to browse for reviews of freeware audio recording applications, you might check out www.kvr-vst.com (huge site -- you'll have to navigate a bit). If anything, the software itself might not be properly configured or allow for certain adjustments you might wish to make -- you should try a small freeware app in order to rule out the soundcard itself as the problem first, perhaps, and if the errors are still there, after tweaking everything you can in the new software, you could *then* try changing the drivers out for your soundcard, for example (KXAudio is a well-regarded replacement driver for Soundblaster cards, available for free, although it doesn't work for everybody -- Wuchsel's ASIO4ALL is another driver which might give you something to play around with), and if that fails, then you might consider popping for a nice Echo card or something -- but you shouldn't have to, just to get usable sound. MDs are compressed, right? I take it the sound is OK when you play direct from MD? Just making sure.
  5. That thing looks shit hot, pardon the expression. Perfect for all kinds of music things, even better than a MIDI controller with umpteen layers of masking tape or plastic templates in some cases. I'm sure it will be damned expensive, though.

    Talking about owning boots or downloading is okay, but no public links to pirated music or open trading of bootlegs. If you want to trade boots with someone do it over PM. ← So if I wanted to start a thread about in order to elicit opinions about the playing of Lennie Tristano on the CBS "Look Up and Live" broadcast of 1964, at heh, that would be OK, provided I didn't mind the usual grousing from those who don't agree the material is worth checking out?
  7. OK, well, I apologize if I misread it. You even seemed to think your post was a "rant", so I was assuming that you were angry. Actually, I think it's more like: "buy a Mac and you'll be happier" - in the way that I've seen countless people switch over to an easier system and still use the same software they've always used. A, then, PC friend who does planning and layout work for the YUM corporation (Pizza Hut, KFC, Taco Bell, Long John Silver's, and others) had some of the same worries, but found she could get her work done much faster and a lot more efficiently after she got an iMac. No more screwing around with trying to match new beta tested software, having her computer crash...a bunch of other things that she was relieved not to have to do anymore. Her husband now has found new glory in his saving and accessing of music files on his new toy. So, yes, I *would* say that it makes one "happier" - I can't see that I've seen many "angry" Mac folks as you say, but this is classic defense. It's just like when the word "vegetarian" comes up in conversation - immediate defense comes up ("ranting," etc...) So, I'm sorry if I misread your post. I was just making a suggestion for "new...cheaper...satisfaction." best to all, Rod --- Now playing: Kid Ory - Down Hearted Blues ← Just out of curiosity, what Mac would be comparable to this PC GregK looked at (P4 3.6 Ghz 800 Mhz front-side bus speed 1 GB RAM 250 GB hard drive 2 DVD drives)? I know that processor speed doesn't translate equally across platforms, but I assume a comparable machine with the Macintosh brand name would be pretty pricey? Or are they cheaper now?
  8. Villiers de L'Isle-Adam, "L'Eve future" Mary Shelley, "The Last Man" Fontenelle, "Entretiens sur la pluralite des mondes" (arguably much of the rationalist literature of the 17th century, including many of Leibniz's tracts, could be considered a kind of science fiction) Avital Ronell, "Crack Wars" (like "The Telephone Book," CW contains elements of narrative)
  9. It's a pretty well-stacked computer (no Firewire port, which seems kind of odd, but you might not need it with USB 2.0, depending on what you have planned -- easy enough to add one or two, though). I think you could build an equivalent box for maybe a tad cheaper (not much cheaper, but some), possibly including a low-end LCD monitor or largeish CRT. Essentially, even with a 90 day warranty, I think you'd be missing out on one of the main reasons people buy a "name" computer, which is tech support. And I don't know if Sony's support is all that great to begin with -- it could well be fantastic, for all I know, however. If you need that sort of thing, you might consider asking if you could purchase an extended warranty. I wouldn't hesitate to buy this reconditioned model -- especially since it's likely to be quite easy to repair yourself or replace components if anything should flake out. Think about it -- even if the worst-case scenario happens and the motherboard fails, you've still got the case, fan, power supply, hard drive, disk drives, RAM -- and it's probably just as likely that the motherboard would fail on a "legit" computer. You guys have to be joking, that a Mac Mini is even close to the power of this machine. I don't care one way or the other on the "great debate," but the machines are hugely dissimilar, different categories, really.
  10. The lost art of writing standards.

    Well, sure; most tunes written by musicians or anyone else just plain suck. To quote one of the good fellawes, I'd rather fuck a dog in the pooper than play some of the precious art-house drek that has passed, in the past two decades, as fodder for jazz improvisation. Smart marketing move, though, to play such tunes. That's why I think it's a good idea to pay attention to those who are writing tunes which employ functional harmony similar to that used by the great popular or jazz composers, as opposed to the atonal compositions which also have their place in the canon, if one values this kind of writing, rather than simply continue to be amazed that many of the compositional nuggets to be found on any contemporary artist's record aren't quite up to the "standard" of the standards.
  11. The lost art of writing standards.

    Well, as some others have suggested, there are at least two ways of understanding the term "standard" -- either very literally, as a commonly known and played tune, or as a description of a musical sub-genre. That's why there are at least two answers to the question, and why the premise of the thread is a good one.
  12. Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier

    At least twice; the 1953 version was followed much later by the (outstanding) version recorded for/by BBC Radio (which comprises both books, not just the Bk 2 pictured above). There might be more recordings as well.
  13. The lost art of writing standards.

    Reed Kotler has made a name for himself as a jazz composer writing "traditional" functionally-harmonic tunes; do a search to find out some of the albums which feature his compositions (I don't have the references handy at the moment)
  14. Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier

    Dude, go straight to the source: et sim. There *is* no Wohltempierte Whtvr as we know it without Tureck. I also have the Hewitt and the Gould, and a few others, I think, but not the Naxos version(s) -- I may pick those up soon and perhaps report back as a fellow pianist.
  15. On a side note, I've found some really wild stuff at FNACs occasionally -- the one near the Opera used to have some fairly obscure sound poetry, including Cramps Records's "Futura" box set of historical sound poems, just to give one example. Absolutely worth checking out some of their locations. I'm glad there's a vocal French constituency here -- it's interesting to read some of your comments.
  16. I lived in Paris for several years; unfortunately, I can't recall the name of the great jazz music shop, but it's very well known. It's across from Jussieu (Metro station and also the name of the Universite de Paris VII) and directly south (cross the street from the south entrance) of the Arenes de Lutece. Which, by the way, is a nice place to have a sandwich midday and such. Lots of vinyl, lots of used CDs. There's a separate shop next door for R&B/Rock/Blues etc. They also have a frequent buyer card which entitles you to a freebee after a relatively few number of purchases. I don't think the main cats there speak English, but I've seen them trying successfully to communicate with non-Francophones, and it appeared to work out very well. There's also a good little shop with some jazz near the Pantheon, and a crazy little shop up in the 18th. I have no way of finding out the names of these places. But the FNAC and such also may have what you need, although not used and perhaps a tad pricy.
  17. Bartok

    No one has mentioned the Sonata for Two Pianos and Percussion yet, so I will. I can't recall the performance that I really listened to when I read through the work as a kid, but there's an OK version by Vladimir and Vovka Ashkenazy (and a percussionist whose name I cannot recall) that should be easy to find. Pretty jazzy stuff, really.
  18. "Matrix Reloaded" (30 min); "The Cell" (after the Thunderbird was gone). Many more. Unless one is somehow interested in the medium as such, one could easily learn treble and up by looking studiously at asphalt, rather than from the flashing lights inside the hellbox.
  19. Hank Jones on "Fresh Air" today

    I agree with Mike. Too many of those melodic, generalizing players out there playing on those long filaments. Nothing's more tiresome than listening to someone like Hank Jones play two bars of sixteenth notes that could make sense only according to functional harmony of the common practice period, and not to the advanced harmonies my struggling, effete, intelligent soul hears every night when the toaster roast potato eats. All those ear players were really not keeping it real.
  20. Yourmusic.com corner

    I believe yourmusic.com has serious issues of late concerning the veracity of their shipping information -- or, perhaps, it is the case that these issues have always existed and I've not been so unfortunate to encounter them until recently. Five weeks ago, I ordered about seven or eight CDs (some double CD sets), which was reported shipped, true to fashion, a few days after the order was placed. Two weeks later, after two additional shipments ordered later by several days were delivered, but not the original shipment, I received an e-mail stating that one of the items in the original order was backordered. At exactly four weeks, the entire order was cancelled and a credit issued to my bankcard. Another order of similar quantity, placed about a week after the order to which I originally referred, has yet to arrive. I believe the issue is not that the USPS is unreliable (although it may be that as well, and more), but that yourmusic.com has had difficulty obtaining and shipping the titles, all the while reporting a status of "shipped" nearly immediately. It sort of sucks they're not being honest -- and as a result, aren't reliable -- but it's still a pretty good deal. I hope they work out their difficulties and are able to sustain their program.
  21. Ruling Is Music To Industry's Ears

  22. That's a nice record, I'll agree. The Homespun instructional DVD featuring Johnson is worth seeking out for hard-core fans -- mostly small group performances with the occasional break-down of Johnson's playing by the man himself.
  23. Overlooked pianists

    Charlie Rich Al Stricklin Moon Mullican
  24. Cedar Walton, Hank Mobley - Breakthrough!

    If you dig the tune "Breakthrough" as much as I do, and Sam Jones's playing in general -- his playing litters this album in a glorious fashion -- it's worth picking up.
  25. Randall guitar amps

    The next one I'm looking at is the Korg Legacy collection, but I can wait until I can find a good deal on it. Are you using these for recording only or for performance also? I've considered going completely digital with my recording setup and using soft-synths, but I'm concerned about stuff like latency. Unless you're like someone like Donald Fagen, very troubled with MIDI latency no matter the instrument, you'll have no troubles with soundcard latency. I used to have a laptop rig for performance, a budget notebook with an Echo Indigo $100 PCMCIA sound card plugged in and a USB MIDI interface -- the results from a performance vantage were acceptable, although I never measured sound-card latency personally. If there was a difference in latency vs. a hardware or even acoustic setup, it was something akin to moving the amps several feet farther away from one -- single-digit ms. of soundcard latency, likely.