Official White House photographer Pete Souza's portfolio of Obama's first 100 days can be found here.
Thursday, 30 April 2009
Official White House photographer Pete Souza's portfolio of Obama's first 100 days can be found here.
The Pop Group play 'Y' - I would like to see that!
In other news I am now a contributor to one of my favourite blogs:
PATHWAY TO UNKNOWN WORLDS
My first post is The Pop Group Live @ Alexandra Palace London on the 15th June 1980 here.
Wednesday, 29 April 2009
I mean it's not for money
(There are no ads here.)
It's not for fame, after all I might not even be who I say I am.
So why do I do it?
Well for a start I would like to think that I am the catalyst for some people to discover something that they have never come across before...
White House press secretary Robert Gibbs announced in his daily briefing that deputy chief of staff Jim Messina was conducting a review of Monday’s flight, in which a government plane, trailed by two fighter jets, flew low over the New York City skyline and triggered fears of another terrorist attack.
“I have firsthand knowledge that the president was furious,” Gibbs said.
Asked if the president believed if it was a good use of public money to send a Boeing 747 on a camera-friendly flight for government photographers to snap publicity pictures, Gibbs pointedly replied: “No.”
On Monday, the White House released a statement from Louis Caldera, the former Army secretary who heads up the White House Military Office, taking blame for the incident. On Tuesday, Gibbs reiterated that Caldera “took responsibility” for the event.
Former White House homeland security adviser Frances Townsend called the incident “felony stupidity” and suggested Caldera should leave his post.
“This is probably not the right job for Mr. Caldera to be in if he didn’t understand the likely reaction of New Yorkers,” the former Bush administration official told CNN.
Networks continued to replay video of New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg trashing federal authorities for allowing the panic-inducing flight to take place, as well as New York Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer’s response to the event.
“There was no need to scare thousands of New Yorkers who still have the vivid memory of 9/11,” Schumer said Monday.
Tuesday, 28 April 2009
The home secretary scrapped plans for a database but wants details to be held and organised for security services.The new system would track all e-mails, phone calls and internet use, including visits to social network sites.
Full story from the 'BBC' here.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry fired up an anti-tax "tea party" on April 15 with his stance against the federal government and for states' rights as some in his U.S. flag-waving audience shouted, "Secede!"...
Perry said when Texas entered the union in 1845 it was with the understanding it could pull out. However, according to the Texas State Library and Archives Commission, Texas negotiated the power to divide into four additional states at some point if it wanted to but not the right to secede...
After praising veterans in the cheering crowd he said: "I'm just not real sure you're a bunch of right-wing extremists. But if you are, we're with you."...
One placard said, "Stop Obama's Socialism." Another read, "Some Pirates Are in America," and it showed photographs of Obama, U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid wearing pirate hats...
Rebecca Knowlton, 45, of Smithville, said she took the day off of home-schooling her three children and brought them to the rally to teach them about civic duty. Knowlton, a critic of the Social Security system and the United Nations, said she felt camaraderie at the demonstration.
Full story from 'The Huffington Post' here.
Gov. Rick Perry today in a precautionary measure requested the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provide 37,430 courses of antiviral medications from the Strategic National Stockpile to Texas to prevent the spread of swine flu.
This is the man who remember didn't accept the $555 million federal unemployment money for its "attached strings".
For a very interesting article about how much money he does take from Washington, read this report from 'The Dallas Morning News'.
Finally just remember that there is another twat right behind you Rick.
Full story here.
(thanx to 'Mogadonia'.)
Natasha currently holds seven world records in sword swallowing including the most swords swallowed by a female (13 twenty two inch long swords) and the longest sword swallowed by a female (twenty seven and a half inches long.)
(Taken from the wonderful new book 'GratefulDead365')
Tracks are 'Space - The Other One - Stella Blue - Turn On Your Lovelight & Brokedown Palace'.
Again it would have been interesting to have heard them playing with each other in the seventies when both Ornette and the Dead were exploring new sonic boundaries.
Ornette's son Denardo is also sitting in on percussion in this set.
(Another gig of Ornette and the Dead playing together from later in the year can be found here.
David Murray live with the Grateful Dead at Madison Square Garden on September 22nd 1993 can be found here. Use search engine at top for much more Grateful Dead live material on this blog.)
Other musicians talking about Laswell include Liu Sola, DXT & Nicky Skopelitis.
Talking about: 'Rockit' - Hancock, Bootsy Collins, Pharaoh Sanders and mainstream music.
Showing around Laswell's studio by DXT and Laswell's Bass collection.
Some shots of Praxis, with Buckethead, Brain, DXT.
Monday, 27 April 2009
Ornette Colman & The Master Musicians Of Jajouka
as well as
Patti Smith & The Silver Mt. Zion Memorial Orchestra
Yoko Ono Plastic Ono Band featuring Sean Lennon, Cornelius & guests
The Roots with guest David Murray
Yo La Tengo
Charlie Haden's Liberation Music Orchestra with guests Carla Bley and Robert
Wyatt + The Bad Plus
~For More info go to:
An unsigned band from Belgium called Steppe.
The band members are: Lisa Steppe:Vocals, Patrick Steenaerts:guitars, keyboards & arranging, Mario Goosens:drums, Werner Lauscher:bass, Mauro Pawlowski:backing vocals & Carlo Mertens on trombone.
Their 'myspace' page is here.
I like this.
A very sultry sound.
Sunday, 26 April 2009
Well that wasn't planned really well at all!
There was (as previously mentioned) a free concert in Melbourne today by Charlie Haden and his (Australian) Liberation Music Orchestra.
Originally to have been held in Federation Square in the heart of Melbourne, due to the expected bad weather it was moved to the 'Edge' auditorium within the Fed Square complex.
The result of this was that not everyone who wanted to see the concert was going to get in.
Unfortunately I missed the train that I wanted to catch and therefore by the time that I got into the city the queue to get into the gig obviously had more people than were going to get inside.
It had been arranged that it would be broadcast outside to those that couldn't get in but instead of showing it on the big screen it was shown on a little screen in the atrium.
This was not obviously going to be an optimum viewing experience.
Ordering a coffee I sat down to watch the gig and felt that I really might as well be reviewing the cup of coffee instead. (It was OK, but an honourable mention goes to the chirpiest barrista ever, though as she said it had been a twelve and a half hour very busy day and it might have just been delirium!)
I also had a brief chat with Jamie & 'Raze' (?) who had stopped by before going off to see this at the Comedy Festival which is overlapping with the International Jazz Festival here in vibrant Melbourne at the moment.
It was about a third of the way through the gig that I noticed that the door security staff had changed so I thought that I would attempt to get inside saying that I had just been to the toilet and 'hey presto' there I was inside.
It was a pretty restrained and polite performance certainly nothing like the previous time I had seen them in London back in the seventies or early eighties.
Anyway who should I bump into but TimN whose photographs of Patti Smith, Nick Cave, Spiritualized, Leonard Cohen and Michael Gira amongst others have apeared on this site in the past.
At the end of the show we decided to go and have a chat with Charlie Haden and I was given Tim's camera to take a shot of the two of them and then was informed that there was no room left on the memory card with the result that I DIDN'T get my photo taken in the company of Mr. Haden!!!
(At least I take some solace in the fact that TN looks like an idiot in the photographs above but good to see his hair is growing back!!!)
My other bit of bad planning occured to me just as I saw someone take their vinyl copy of the first Liberation Music Orchestra album out of their bag to get it signed and thought WHY didn't I bring my copy?
Charlie said we will do it next time.
I look forward to it.
* Yes that Jack Black!
(Thanx to Joseph for services rendered!)
Also my apologies to the 'melbdeadheads' crew for not thinking of meeting up until it was too late!
There is a good review of the gig here which also includes a link to download Charlie Haden's interview with Andrew Ford on Radio National the day before.
Not outdoors anymore so now limited seating.
Curse the weather!
Photograph: Getty Images
'THE DYING FALL'
Three years have passed since the collapse of the Tower of Pisa, but only now can I accept the crucial role that I played in the destruction of this unique landmark. Over twenty tourists died as the thousands of tons of marble lost their grasp on the air and collapsed to the ground. Among them was my wife Elaine, who had climbed to the topmost tier and was looking down at me when the first visible crack appeared in the tower's base. Never were tragedy and triumph so intimately joined, as if Elaine's pride in braving the worn and slippery stairs had been punished by the unseen forces that had sustained this unbalanced mass of masonry for so many centuries.
I realise now that another element - farce - was present on that day. By chance a passing tourist on the steps of the cathedral had taken a photograph of the tower as the crack reached the third floor and a tell-tale section of cornice began its fall to earth. The photograph, endlessly published throughout the world, clearly shows the four startled tourists on the uppermost deck. Three of them are leaning back on their heels, hands raised to grip the sky, aware that the ancient campanile has moved under their feet.
Continue reading at 'The Guardian' here.
(My thanx to Moira: 'my-eye-in-the-Skye' for the pointer.)
Saturday, 25 April 2009
January 22, 2009
This is a letter to Karmic Angels. It's really a kind of interactive thought experiment; I send this letter hoping it finds its way to a certain kind of person, one of the people who burn with the desire to help others, but unlike most of us, who are also gifted with extraordinary power to do something about it. People who can change someone else's whole life - lift a burden unfairly laid on them, balance the karmic scales so that a bad thing that happened to a good person is undone and made right.
Far be it from me to judge my own goodness. The official records show that many people officially charged with judging others have condemned me in the worst possible terms as a "pervert" or at least an unfeeling mother. Who am I to contradict them? And yet, I never meant any harm when I made the SubGenius writings and performances that condemned me. We only wanted to laugh.
So then, I fight on. I can't accept that what happened to me was fair. If I have made art that is truly blasphemous and destructive to society, I didn't mean to. I just did it, as any artist does, and it was meant to be funny.
I accepted that I might have to listen to critics chastise me; that's fair. I accepted that my art would never be widely popular. That didn't matter to me as long as my friends liked it. I accepted that I would never get a National Endowment for the Arts grant; it's fair for the taxpayers to choose what art they want to spend their money on.
But to lose my firstborn and only son, that was not fair. To be burdened with more debt than I could pay with ten years of my salary, that is not fair. To have been forced to leave my home and husband, and live alone in another state in order to attend endless court proceedings for nearly two years, that was not fair.
Now, thankfully, our family is finally back together, but the financial burden that remains is devastating, especially as the proceedings grind through their final appeals. No matter how hard we work, we just barely make it each month.
So I offer up my story to any Karmic Angels out there who want to make a difference to one family, lifting an overwhelming burden off people who never meant any harm but got hammered hard, just for joking. If you are moved by my story, and you have the power to help, that help would be most welcome.
I need $38,000 to pay the debt my father offered his entire retirement savings as collateral for. I need $23,000 to pay my outstanding debts with the excellent lawyer, Mr. Christopher Mattingly, who fought beyond the call of duty to reunite our family. I need an additional $5,000 to finish the current appeals.
These amounts are far beyond my reach, but if you are a person to whom that amount of money sounds like a nice summer vacation in Italy, and you want to give an entire family a new life, it would be much appreciated, and I'm sure Karma would take note. If not, would you be so kind as to forward this letter on to anyone you think might help?
Or if you want to just mail Mr. Mattingly a check, or use a card over the phone, his info is:
Christopher S. Mattingly
42 Delaware Ave
Buffalo, NY 14202-3924
(716) 849-1333 ext 351
Rachel Bevilacqua (Rev. Magdalen)