The Coach House

Jon bowing his bass after soundcheck at the Coach House in San Juan Capistrano.

Saint Rocke, Hermosa Beach

A view from the dressing room of Sainte Rock in Hermosa Beach. This is always an interesting show because the audience has to stand for the performance. There are some seats in the back but, with everyone in front standing, you probably don’t see very much from there.

I learned that Gabrielle Raumberger, who designed several of my albums for Sony Music, lives in Hermosa Beach. We talked backstage after the concert. I also ran into a man who worked on my first video in 1992, Reaching Out 2 U. Small world. Appears even smaller in a small club.

Napa

:-)

Oh man, this trio is something else. Big smiles. :-)))))

Hu

(((This is the 2019 draft of a post I never made. It was the first idea for a title and design for the album that became Fete. I worked on different designs to support the idea but they ended up looking like, well, color wheels… not interesting and definitely not exciting. Sometimes even the dead ends are interesting, because they represent a thought process and a journey of discovery. This is probably from sometime last year April, I believe. I think the title Fete is better and I love the color and the design of the album cover. It fits the music. I heard that a good ratio of success to failure is 60 : 40. A rate of success that is higher than 60% means that one isn’t trying hard enough, not taking enough chances, and a rate of failure that is higher than 40% can be dispiriting… I did end up naming my new record company HuHeartDrive, which plays with the ideas of the Hard Drive, or memory, with Heart and being HUman)))

The title of the album may be: Hu

For me there is a double meaning to that word HU. The first is HUman without the patriarchy. The backstory is that MANN was once the old English word for people. At that time WIF was the word for a female mann and WER the word for a male mann. Those words are still in use, because WIF became WIFE and WER is still used in the word WEREWOLF, man-wolf. Somehow we ended up with huMAN, an English word that has always bothered me. I think words matter and words like woMAN and huMAN I don’t love. Similarly there are the words MALE and feMALE.

Here is a quote from an article about FEMALE – MALE:

Female has its origin in Latin and comes from the Latin word “femella”, or “femina”, which of course means “woman”. Male, on the other hand, come from Old French “masle”, or as we know it in modern French “mâle”, that itself comes from the Latin word “masculus”, both of which mean “male human”. Over time “masle” became Male and, around 14th century, after a long use side by side with Male, “femella” morphed into Female, bringing both words in line with the modern usage. There is no prefix Fe in the word Female, Female stands on its own, and only after centuries of misspelling did the words Female and Male acquire their similarities.

The second meaning of HU is, of course, HUE, as in color…

I am thinking of creating a color wheel of human skin tones. I imagine it to be a round representation (like a circle or a planet), but I want the tones to lose their separate fields and blend into one another, and I want the background to be black – since we all came from Africa.

Exhalation

I finished reading Exhalation, a collection of short stories by Ted Chiang, this morning. Before I had coffee! It’s a great collection, thoughtful and thought provoking. Very good.

Yellow

I sometimes wear yellow pants on stage for the same reason that I created an upbeat album, called FETE. We live in turbulent times where discourse has either withered or is drowned out by social media.

Our parents taught us how to speak to strangers, how to ask what time it was or how to get directions, but nobody taught us how to use social media and perhaps that is why it became such a mess.

I myself am a lurker. From time to time I check Insta or Twitter, but I rarely post anything. I don’t like the tribalism and the bifurcation. Social media is apparently capable of, and perhaps was intentionally geared towards, bringing out the worst in us. And how could it not? Where blogging tended to be longer in form, Twitter and Instagram limit the length; therefore, most content becomes slogans and shouting and posturing and chest beating.

Here is a genuine problem that needs to be addressed: on one hand anonymity enables people to express themselves in areas where they might be attacked for their opinion, whether they be political dissenters or minorities, or people who are LGBT. Let’s not forget that being gay can mean prison, or worse, in some places. On the other hand anonymity allows people to say hurtful things that they would NEVER say if people knew who they were.

We live in turbulent times and I was tempted to record an album of sad, sad music and wear only black clothes. But I remembered a study that found that most people WILL feel happier after they smile. So I made an album that’s upbeat and which makes me smile every time I listen to it. And so I am wearing color, like these yellow pants, because they make me smile. And because most people wear dark colors in turbulent times these pants were on sale for only $25. So I got my smile for cheap.

Google Maps Hack

99 second hand smartphones are transported in a handcart to generate virtual traffic jam in Google Maps.Through this activity, it is possible to turn a green street red which has an impact in the physical world by navigating cars on another route to avoid being stuck in traffic.

Simon Weckert

Archives