If I wish I had somebody's Powers, it's Ross Daly's. Plenty more via the 'Related', and he has quite a few CDs out there, though they're not easily found.
Pervane ("an Irish tune", though it doesn't become recognizable until 4:10 or so --usually known as "The Butterfly")
Iocasti's dream (Ross plays laouto here)
Musical projects have dined on my time for the last couple of months, mostly in forms that aren't Web-distributable (for reasons of copyright, not to mention server space). Along the way I've been working with literal mountains of vinyl, tape, mp3s, CDs collected over the years, and YouTube has raised its little head repeatedly. Dunno just why I haven't thought to make more use of blogspace to track what I've been finding, so maybe I'll try that for a bit. I note that the leaps from one genre to another are sometimes pretty canyonical: what, after all, unites Old Timey American with off-the-wall Klezmer? Tubist Mark Rubin for one. Here he underpins Frank London's Klezmer Brass All Stars, plus semi-invited guests:
Any YouTube video is likely to provoke one into watching more of the "related" offerings, and probably a couple of steps down that path will take the wanderer into even hairier territory. Consider Vassilis Saleas vs. Ferus Mustafov:
and a couple of steps further south takes us to the Turkish band Laço Tayfa, with clarinetist Hüsnü Senlendirici:
Good Old Serendipity (in the form of the 11 Sept 2007 iteration of WFMU's Antique Phonograph program) brought me to Rosetta and Vivian Duncan, and some googlement ensued:
Wikipedia articleWhat caught the Old Ear was this preposterous song:
Midnight Place article
I'm Sailing On a Sunbeam (1929, via YouTube)
...and Mean Cicero Blues from Jeff Cohen's delirious Vitaphone Varieties blog
The Argentines, the Portuguese, and the Greeks (1923 --there's a slightly different version linked via Jeff Cohen). My not-quite-complete transcription:Make of it what you will...
Columbus discovered America in 1492
Then came the English, and the French, the Scotchman, and the Jew
Then came the Dutch and the Irishman to help the country grow
And still they keep on coming, and now everywhere you go
There's the Argentines, and the Portuguese, the Armenians, and the Greeks
One sells you papers, the other shines the shoes
The other takes the whiskers off your cheeks
And when you ride again on a subway train
Notice who has all the seats
They're all held by the Argentines, and the Portuguese, and the Greeks
Now there's a little flat where you lay your hat
Has a history I'll explain
The ..... is a ...., the hobo is a Coon, the elevator fellow is a Dane
But who is the gent that collects the rent at the end of these four weeks?
That is all done by the Argentines, and the Portuguese, and the Greeks
There's the Oldsmobile, and the Hupmobile, and the Cadillac and the Ford
Now these are the motors that you and I can own, the kind most anybody can afford
But the Cunninghams and the Mercurys and the Rolls Royce racing ...
They're all owned by the Argentines, and the Portuguese, and the Greeks
Now there's the Argentines, and the Portuguese, the Armenians, and the Greeks
They don't know the language, they don't know the laws
Yet they vote in the country of the free
And the funny thing when we start to sing "My country 'tis of thee"
None of us know the words but the Argentines, and the Portuguese, and the Greeks
There's the Argentines, and the Portuguese, the Armenians, and the Greeks
When we're departed, our souls will soar up in the heavenly seats
At the Golden Gates, where the angels wait, we'll be asking there for seats
And they'll all be reserved by the Argentines, and the Portuguese, and the Greeks
The first text one happens to read in the day sometimes kicks off a sequence of thoughts and activities. The top of the heap in the bathroom happened today to be Parodies: an anthology from Chaucer to Beerbohm --and After (the 1965 Modern Library Giant edition, fruit of a trip to the local usedbookery), and a random opening brought this for my consideration as Leitmotiv for the day:
(Cloax is the vilest drink, gougingOooooookay, I thought. It's from Myra Buttle's Sweeney in Articulo (part of The Sweeniad, Victor Purcell's rather vicious ca. 1957 parody of T.S. Eliot --I know Victor Purcell for his work on the Chinese in Southeast Asia and on Malayan history, but am pleased to find him at play here). And so the odd half hour went into inquiring into Eliot (which led to The T. S. Eliot Page, and turned up A craving for reality: T. S. Eliot today by Roger Kimball). After that, a visit to the phlebotomist (fasting), and then breakfast... some days are more fun than others.
Pockets out of your giblets, mixing
Frenzy and remorse, blending
Rot-gut and white-ants.
Jalap has a use, laundering
Colons with refreshing suds, purging
The lower soul with gentle motion.)
Two years after the moment of Retirement, a glance in the rear view mirror suggests that Things are indeed Larger Than They Appear, in the sense that they're disappearing into the distance. They may be Larger, but increasingly I don't much care, or anyhow don't care in the ways that I once did. Reform Teaching and Learning? Faugh. Take on and remediate the technological cluelessness of librarians and college administrators? I thumb my nose in your general direction. Carry on campaigns for GIS and Web 2.0? Somebody else can break their teeth on those bones. But still I occasionally find statements that stir some of those former enthusiasms, usually in the edublogs I'm still following (though in ever more desultory ways). Today's case in point: don't miss the beloved Stephen Downes' latest, Stager, Log and Web 2.0 for its array of home truths and eloquent Aux Armes! that are his specialty. A few crisp outtakes:
...the main lesson is, I would say, school reform won't work. Schools were designed for a particular purpose, one that is almost diametrically at odds with what ought to be the practices and objectives of a contemporary education, an education suited not only to the information age but also to the objectives of personal freedom and empowerment...
...it's not just that the textbook is an inefficient paper-and-ink publication. It's the whole idea of standardization and lesson plans and curriculum that the textbook brings with it. We should stop using textbooks because they cost too much. We should stay off textbooks because we get a better education as a result...
As Dave Pollard says, "Bucky was right: 'You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.' We won't win zoning battles or economic control battles or electoral system battles or proportionate representation battles in the courts or the election campaigns or the markets that are controlled by the elite. We must instead walk away from these corrupt and dysfunctional systems and build new ones, responsive and responsible and sustainable alternatives that others can look at and say 'yes, that works much better'."
...people have pretty much given up on trying to reform the existing institutions. We've seen a lot of people try. Meet the new boss... same as the old boss. Why bother to fight the restrictions. School web is blocked? Just use your iPhone. Policies are overly restrictive? Just ignore them. I mean - what are they going to do, fire you from your $25K job? Why rock the boat when it's going over the waterfall?
People are not just opting out of traditional education. They are also opting out of traditional business and traditional government. Making their own decisions instead of trying to sway bodies that purport to make decisions for them.