Thursday, April 28, 2005

Phillies - Let's Get Together, People

Will Bunch's Attytood blog is going to start live discussion during Phillies games. This is a GREAT idea. We should really seek strength and comfort in numbers. We'll be able to second guess in real time and (occasionally) celebrate the triumphant victories.

I'm not giving up on those Phils just yet!!

Other sites worth checking out (thanks, Will) are Citizen's Blog and Philliesnation - the later being home of the Steve Jeltz Award:

Friday, April 22, 2005

RAIN - Cerulean Blue

This record is TERRIFIC. I discovered it in at the 'official' Genesis discussion boards. People were asking about the music that Steve Hackett was featuring before his recent acoustic concerts. Well the artist himself (Rain, not Steve) chimed in and informed everyone of the details.

Just go to the link above, listen to the clips or even download the entire record on mp3. I'm planning to make the purchase, once I can get Pay-Pal figured out (don't ask).

Anyway, Cerulean Blue tells the story of a young man's journey across America. the music is intense and emotional. The narration between songs sets the mood perfectly, and the resolution is powerful and heartfelt. Yes, it's great prog, but it's also great music. CHECK IT OUT!

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

The old ball game

It is abeautiful night for baseball in the city of brotherly love. Really looking forward to ditching all the bulls&^$#t and enjoying a beautiful night at the park. Although he's not pitching tonight, Brett Myers has an 0.44 ERA. DAMN!

People of WHICH faith?

UGH! I am ill over Senators Frist and Santorum and their 'nuKular option.' As you probably know, the plan is to change the rules of the Senate to eliminate the filibuster - that is eliminate excess debate so that our Federal Courts can be packed with the 'right' kind of Judges. This plan had kinda lost momentum a few weeks ago, but now it's all but a sure thing. And to add insult to injury, the right wing noise machine is making this a battle over religion and faith. In other words, if you're against their plan, your part of the radical secularists waging a war on people of faith. But people of which faith?

Richard Cohen at the Washington Post does a much better job with this one than I ever could. Read his editorial here.

So, you know, it's not a crime to be a secular citizen (yet), it just means your rights don't matter as much as those of (the right) people of faith.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

"Between a chiropracter and a tree surgeon"

On the advent of the activist/moralist pharmacist, here's Bill Maher, via DailyKos.

Philadelphia Daily News chimes in today also.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Lil Sadie - as promised

My lovely sister and her beuatiful Sadie.

Of course, the madness continues...

The RIAA may have backed off our friends at Easytree, but college students are apparently still public enemy #1.
When are these guys going to get a clue? With all the resources they've wasted trying to beat down college students, they could have banded together and been halfway to a new business model by now. Since when is creativity about imposing your will on somebody else? It's really kind of sad.

Everything I Said Below Is Still Valid...

BUT, it seems that Easytree is back as dimeadozen. They even kept old member accounts active. Now, it's worth noting here that the traders have a responsibility to keep the 'officially released' material off the boards. This is all about trading stuff that has never been (and probably will never be) released. The temporary shutdown of easytree apparently resulted when someone posted officially released Nirvanna material and no one said anything to get the torrent stopped. We've got to do better.

Friday, April 08, 2005

File Sharing - update

The biggest and best live-music BitTorrent tracker was shut down the other day because of pressure from record companies. was an amazing resource. Here's my rant from another message board:

Easytree was a massive bittorrent tracker that allowed sharing and trading of live musical performances. In almost every case, artist approval had been secured, and no $$ was ever exchanged. Now, thanks to a policy that is meant to stiffle creativity and subvert existing copyright laws, easytree is no more. It doesn't matter that proper enforcment of copyright law would permit the practrice of file sharing (copying is OK without commercial exploitation). The only thing that matters is that the most creative programmers are independant and are not in a position to defend against a well-funded aggressor - even if the aggressor is not on solid legal footing. As is too often the case, the party with more $$$ wins.

I mean here's the question:Is it the existence of bootleg concerts that causes record sales to be soft, or is it the fact that record industry charges at least $17.99US for new records and then produces rafts of crap? They're losing money becuase they don't know how to survive in this new environment - the digital age, whatever.

So what does the RIAA spend it's money on? Eradicating the exchange of concert bootlegs. My favorite band is Genesis and their management has explicitly sanctioned this type of sharing - THEY THINK ITS OK! The only rules are that you don't trade released material (no problem - got all that anyway) and you don't exchange any $$.

But let's look at someone who (I think) hasn't expressed an opinion on the disemination of bootlegs of his concerts - english picker John McLaughlin (showing may age a bit here). This guy appears with his band Mahavishnu in Germany 30 YEARS AGO for a concert that is aired on local TV. Decades later that concert is traded via Bittorrent. How is McLaughin being harmed?

The theories are that it dilutes the perception of the artist or kills any market for an official release of that material. This is pure bulls&^$t. A guy like McLaughlin should be thankful that easytree exists (er, existed) so that people remember why he became famous in the first place.

So the 'regulators' say that it's not the actual practice of trading (I can still make you a copy of something from my collection and send it off to you as a gift), but the technology is so dangerous to their commercial interests that ALL USES of that technology must be banned.

So, of course, the result will be that, without final clarification of the law, the RIAA and their friends (Don Henley? give me a break - not an Eagles fan), will continue to push around the little guy. Maybe one day they will realize that without innovation, people like Miles Davis would never have helped to make them so rich in the first place.

End of rant.

Uh-oh (Phillies Related)

Will Bunch of the DailyNews has a great blog called Attytood (see link at left) - it's mostly political with local emphasis, but giving good opnion coverage nationally and internationally.

Anyway, he's turned his attention to the 1-2 Phillies now and sees some possible trouble on the horizon, with only a mere 159 games left to play the season.

Saturday, April 02, 2005

Getting Very Psyched for Bob

We'll be making our way up to the Beacon in NYC at the end of this month. Should be a VERY good show.

I've been helping to get myself into a frenzy with a few choice file shares from This is a great BitTorrent for unreleased musical recordings. I know folks like Don Henley think file sharing will put him out of a job (like HE needs more money), but, as Brian Eno and others understand - you can't stem the tide of technology. Music must be available on a wider basis, and the internet gives the artist a great opporunity to interact with the audience. Besides, outlawing this technology will have a chilling effect on future innovations. Of course, to Don Henley, who hasn't really done anything compelling in the last 20 years, the end of innovation is not really a problem.

Bob, on the other hand, is still writing and still kickin ass.