d_trektone_w: (acl)
Just got home from the Stephen Schwartz event. Got in line an hour beforehand and there were still 30 people ahead of me. The "conversation" was moderated by Carol de Giere, who runs Mr. Schwartz's website and wrote his biography they later signed.

It was kind of an "Actor's Studio" with music. I like process talk, even though some of seemed rehearsed. Some I'd read about before, but a lot I hadn't, like his emulation of Laura Nyro's style in his early days.

There was a good amount of music, which was mostly quite enjoyable. The "not" parts were when I started tearing up, sometimes expected and other times kind of surprising. A running joke was the out-of-tune condition of the piano where Schwartz sat. When he hit the first measures of "No One Mourns the Wicked," though, I almost immediately choked up. Fortunately, he went on to demonstrate the middle section. Interesting! Going into his construction of songs with motifs, I knew "Defying Gravity" was going to get to me, and it did.

As the conversation moved to his earlier work in both theatre and films, he performed "Corner of the Sky" in its entirety and I was dabbing my eyes throughout. He did a bit from "Godspell" - "All Good Gifts," maybe? - and that got me, too. His finale, after the Q & A session, was "For Good," which I liked as a solo performance. Sniff.

The autograph session was relaxed and Mr. Schwartz was very friendly. I got the bio and also had him sign my "Grimmerie" (thanks, [livejournal.com profile] singular_girl!):

d_trektone_w: (acl)
This event on Monday night, 1/26, isn't too far from where I work, so I think it'll be fun to go. I guess it's to bring more attention to Wicked's return to San Francisco (open-ended run) and to sell a new biography about him. Still, seeing and hearing about the process, however canned his speech, should be fun.

http://www.theschwartzscene.com/blog/2008/12/19/schwartz-2009-events/


If anyone is interested in attending, let me know and I'll try to hold a space in line (Museum of Performance & Design, 4th floor, 401 Van Ness Avenue). The venue contact said they expect to let ~100 in for seating, and possibly more for standing room. There's no charge, but it's a "get in line early" event and I'll probably go to dinner nearby (last resort: Max's Opera Plaza Cafe) and then be there by 6:15pm for the 7pm start. I'll likely get a copy of the bio and will bring my Grimmerie, too, just in case.
d_trektone_w: (chrysP)
Although I'm not a fan of Lenny Kravitz, I tried for and got tix to a special event where he'd be doing music. The pass was for two and [livejournal.com profile] keker (with whom I had a lovely evening on Tuesday, dining at the vegan Japanese place, Cha-Ya, in San Francisco, followed by ice cream at Bi-Rite -- still love the Salty Caramel) came along for last night's "concert." Venue: The Fillmore, where I'd been just five days before to see Suzanne Vega w/[livejournal.com profile] singular_girl.

([livejournal.com profile] uoggb: if you lived around here I so would've asked if you wanted to see this. Would you have?)

It turned out to be tedious at times. There was recording to be done and we were asked to sign a release. We stood around inside after standing in line, having arrived a half hour before the requested time. I was a bit afraid of the large stacks of speakers to each side of the stage (possibly four times as many as for the SV concert), so was relieved as we got to the middle front, approximately two layers of people from the barrier, between the speaker stacks.

We were encouraged to be lively, clap a lot, smile, be loud as appropriate and have a good time. "Television" was mentioned several times. Our wristbands had "Wal-Mart soundcheck" and various assistants milling about had "AXE" in big letters and "Lenny Kravitz" in much smaller type on their black t-shirts.

As I said, I'm not a fan of LK. I don't dislike his music and he seems accomplished from what I have seen. Although I can appreciate that he's gone down an interesting path, career-wise, it's still one of "rock star" which, I admit, he fully brought to this show. His band had a goofy stereotype of a glam rock bassist, but the drummer was posturing in fun all over the place and was hot, too.

While we waited, I asked Christine if she knew many LK songs. Aside from his cover of "American Woman" I hadn't been able to dredge up more than a bit of melody from any, though I could give song and album titles. Christine apparently knew more bits of songs, but we pretty much, well, acted.

This isn't to say I didn't enjoy the musical interludes between the set-ups. Even though much can be done post-production, LK's performance had all the strutting, posing, and attitude one sees in such things, but he either acted well or was very much in the moment. His vocals seemed a bit muffled (we might've been too close to the stage and away from the full effect of the speakers) and his guitar-playing, though not integral to the overall sound as far as I could tell, was proficient and confident. He did a couple of songs from his new album first and then treated us to a few hits. If you see me in the "Let Love Rule" audience scenes, I really am mouthing those words, the only ones I know from that song.

There was a somewhat low IQ Q&A segment after the musical performance and people had been pre-screened to step up to the mike. However, after LK responded reasonably well to the question of the most influential female singer to him (Aretha Franklin) and there was a slight lull, I shouted out "You should do a duet with her!" and he said he'd definitely be interested, or something like that. So I had a moment w/Mr. LK - hee!

I guess I'll be on the lookout for the tv or whatever showing of this event. I understand there was a similar one several days before in L.A., so maybe scenes from both will be mixed together. Catch me on YouTube? We'll see.
d_trektone_w: (calla)
On separate nights I saw Vanessa Carlton (last Thursday) and Suzanne Vega (Monday). For some reason I'm finding I'm losing interest in doing detailed concert reviews, but here goes:

Vanessa Carlton )

Suzanne Vega )

dulcimer

Sep. 1st, 2007 09:20 pm
d_trektone_w: (dulc)
I've been somewhat interested in the mountain aka Appalachian dulcimer for a while. Like the sound. The first time I had a close-up dose was a song or two by Holly Tannen in the early '80's. Then [livejournal.com profile] folkmew seemed at ease playing hers and others.

When up in Mendocino (up the coast from San Francisco), I wandered into Lark in the Morning, a music and instruments store. A $100 basic package of dulcimer, instruction booklet & cassette tape, pick and cardboard case lured me into making the purchase. That was back in '97. Since then I'd learned to accompany myself on a song or two, but didn't pay attention to tunings, etc., figuring I'd get into it later.




Got it in '97 -- see?

With the fear of having to check my guitar (and the more recent "guitar killer" episode) I'd been thinking about mandolin, too, because I haven't been satisfied with the small/baby guitars' sound, like the Taylor (not tried the Big Baby) or Martin. Actually the Martin Backpackers I've tried sound sort of like my dulcimer. Hmm. :)

Spent a couple of hours last night looking at [livejournal.com profile] peteralway's lj posts I remembered from earlier this year, some websites and YouTube vids. Yay for the Internet! I'm amused by sound files for the express purpose of tuning assistance.

While watching tennis, I tried a few different tunings. I liked the sound of the C (G G) over the D (A A), at least on my dulcimer.


Questions to dulcimer players and interested parties:

Do you like the sound of the droning? Or do you prefer more melodic movement, even for accompaniment? Much like the guitar, I'm looking for an instrument to fit with my voice that isn't too difficult for me to play. No "dulcimer solos!" for me.

Do you tend to stick with certain chord positions for ease of playing? As a newbie with some "note-learnin'" I've been playing a few songs from memory, constructing the chords as I work through the song. I think "okay, to get to an Am from this open-sounding G I need to have these notes" and proceed to look at the possibilities, at least within the six or seven left-most fret positions. Since there are only three strings and two different notes, it hasn't been too tough, but occasional I lament the absence of some "black keys." Hee

Maybe the approach is to learn the basic positions first, then branch out, but it's been fun the way I've been doing it so far. Thoughts?

And use a pick or finger pick/strum? As someone who doesn't play guitar w/a flat pick (much) I'm trying to get used to the odd triangular pick, but am okay with the finger strumming or occasional finger picking.
d_trektone_w: (orchidO)
Last Friday bf2007 and I went to the True Colors concert

Two weeks ago I went to a solo performance (trans-person), a panel discussion (Queers Under the Influence of Beats), the annual Pride Concert, a reading/booksigning and then the Parade.
Choruses )
Domo Arigato, Mr. Panozzo )
Parade and festival area )
The chicks and Andy )

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xUcoU21wSH4

Fun, fun, fun, fun, fun show!
d_trektone_w: (Default)




6/30/07: What a bad voice post. Then again, it was very noisy. [livejournal.com profile] mat_t's transcription was very close. LOL! I believe I actually said,

"Is this on? I'm at the True Colors Tour concert and Rosie O'Donnell just hit the stage! Hee!"
d_trektone_w: (noble)
These were alternate Subject lines I was going to use:

the show and a pic(k) )
And another guy not far behind me exclaimed, "I love you Alan!" which prompted the Brokeback response. The same guy later shouted "I love you Séan!" Fickle San Franciscan.
d_trektone_w: (noble)
Last February I attended a housefilk hosted by Bob Kanefsky at his condo community's clubhouse. I remember thinking how I'd been looking forward to getting back into singing. Little did I know it would be nearly year from that day that I'd feel like singing or picking up my guitar much again. Yesterday's filksing, again hosted by Kanef, I had more motivation to prepare and was happily expecting others' renditions of Cynthia McQuillin's songs, too.

Braving the Chinese New Year Parade traffic that I knew would be clogging all major highways around San Francisco, it took me almost 2 1/2 hours to get to there, so I missed the first hour, having arrived at 7pm. (Drive back home took less than an hour, but it was after 1am when I left ...)

the long list, a few pics, etc. )
Consonance in a few weeks!
d_trektone_w: (orchid)
I had started an lj entry about movies I saw before and during my year-end vacation. Really. It'll happen. A post about the "Lestat" musical is forthcoming as well. My life hasn't been devoid of fun, but these other things keep cropping up. Various Cindy memories will be posted.

Mom update: tingly/numbness on her left side comes and goes. Dr appt tomorrow -- not soon enough.

Tonight I'll be seeing The Kinsey Sicks. Their show, "I Wanna Be A Republican," is supposedly being filmed for a documentary or something. So me and my new haircut (and the person I'm going with to the show -- more on that later) may be coming to a theatre near you.

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