The Monkees, People's Drugstore and a Day in 1966

Bob Burnett: Davy Jones of The Monkees died today. He was 66. Thanks goes out to his circa 1966 acting along with Mike Nesmith, Peter Tork and Mickey Dolenz for the portrayed whimsy on the TV show The Monkees.  More importantly, thanks goes out to my mom, who in 1966 walked out of People's Drug Store with a bag of sundries, including The Monkees first album.  I still see her handing that album to me over the car seat and saying "here, I thought you'd like this".  Little did she know that was the moment my personal freedom set in. I played the album over and over; it brought spark to my kindergarten year.  Over time, repeated listens helped me realize "Tomorrow's Gonna Be Another Day" "and "Last Train to Clarksville" from that album were better songs than "(Theme from) THE MONKEES". Time also led me in other musical directions.  

No matter how many times I turned my collection over (Beatles-to-Chicago-to-ELP-to Henry Cow-to-Ornette Coleman...etc.etc.) I never sold that album because I knew it was the Yuri Gagarin of my music collecting, listening and discovering. (In fact, that's it up top in this post.)

I know as an adult the whole MONKEES rig was the starting point for the corporatization of media; when music, TV, lunchboxes and whatever else were gelled together.  An entertainment vacuum that leaves me cold.  BUT, when it comes to The Monkees, I'm able to remove all the clutter and still be a six year old excited about music for the first time.

A few years back I was in a winery in Napa Valley.  Mickey Dolenz stopped in and bought a case of wine.  I did a little pretend-like-I-didn't-see-him stalking but didn't dare say anything to him. I didn't want to be another forty-something retro-reflector for him to  shake hands with, graciously say thanks and probably wish a few hours could go by on just one day where someone didn't remind him he was in The Monkees. Anyway, the guy who worked at the winery told me after he left he was a local and came in to buy wine and always kept it real.  I was glad to hear that.

So here I sit, having not thought about The Monkees in decades, getting incredibly soft and sentimental for a console stereo time gone by. I'm listening to Pat Metheny playing covers of songs like "The Sound of Silence", "Rainy Days and Mondays" and "That's the Way I Always Heard It Should Be" from his album What's It All About. Little pictures of spinning The Monkees flood my mind.....and bridge where I once was with where I am today thanks in part to knowing Robert Wyatt (with the help of Fred Frith, Nick Mason and others) did a cover of "I'm A Believer".


Jacksonville Pulses and Places

Bob Burnett:  Work this week took me to Jacksonville, Florida.  I had the opportunity to take a few long walks (with headphones) in the evening through the downtown.  Like many places in the USA, Jacksonville has a nice assortment of historic buildings that over time have been accentuated with rampant mediocrity: lifeless towers, formless streets and highway overpasses and ramps that split up connectivity.  There are many vacant buildings that seem to have been gutted in hopes of future rebirth or perhaps were the start of rebirth and the financing collapsed leaving nothing but a shell.  I came across a few odds and end retail spots and restaurants that seemed to offer some sense of possibility among all the emptiness.  No doubt there's community pride and hope for a thriving sense of place.  Unfortunately, it seems to be a stalled work in progress. 

I walked one evening with the Machinefabriek (Rutger Zuydervelt)/Andrea Belfi duet Pulses and Places (via MOG).  The match of location and soundtrack worked nicely.  Pulses and Places was released in September 2009.  Korm Plastics has a nice website that describes the duet and describes the release:
Drifting somewhere between gentle drone-based ambient and modern psychedelia/postrock, the four pieces of "Pulses and Places" consists of waving organ sounds, chilling guitar drones with downbeat hand percussions. The expression of the overall album sounds like a mixture between early Pink Floyd as they sounded in their most trippy psychedelic moments and 80's rock/pop-giants Talk Talk in their more experimental postrock-based period around the "Spirit of Eden"-album (1990).
A striking collaboration took place between Belfi on drums and assorted small percussion and Zuydervelt on guitar and organ. Together they produce the 'pulses' and 'places' mentioned in the title. Organic yet partially improvised, it resembles a kind of sonic geography. The listener is taken away for a journey of mild drones, soft yet outspoken percussion.

As Pulses and Places continued, my personal sonic geography walk carried me from downtown to the waterfront of the St.Johns River.  There's a place called Jacksonville Landing that attempts to be a tourist destination.  As with downtown, you can sense there was effort and great hope at one time for the Landing to be a cornerstone/destination for tourists and visitors.  Unfortunately, it's flat.  It houses a few sports bar-type places and an array of odds and ends tourist trap shops that feature Chinese-made Florida Gator throwaways.  The tourist presence I saw were a smattering of '70s feathered-hair folks (one in a Rod Stewart concert tee shirt) having one last cigarette before going to Hooters.

After the Landing, Pulses and Places landed too.  I found myself back at my hotel glad to have experienced both the music and the visuals.


Paul Reed Smith P-22

Kim Kirkpatrick:

In February of 2012 Paul Reed Smith released an electric guitar that I think may be the most innovative instrument they have ever produced. The model is the P-22, equipped with two 53/10 pick ups as well as a piezo one mounted under the bridge. Piezo pick ups have been around for decades installed in various hollow or semi hollow guitars for amplification of the acoustic sound. However, for the first time PRS has specifically designed one for a solid body guitar. If played through a PA system or an acoustic amplifier using the piezo setting on the  P-22, it would be hard for anyone to tell it is a solid body guitar and not an acoustic one. The P-22 is also a versatile electric guitar with newly designed 53/10 pick ups. The electric and piezo features can be used in tandem or separately which is an amazing option for players.  The guitar can be played through a PA system or acoustic amp and a standard guitar amp at the same time. The P-22 has an outlet dedicated to the piezo as well as an electric/piezo combination outlet.These features have the potential to radically change a guitarist's options in the studio and performing live. Up to now an acoustic track would be laid down in the studio and then an electric track over top. Two tracks combined to create a rocking guitar sound with the clarity of each string being heard. With the P-22 the guitarist can send the 53/10 pick up signal to his guitar amp and a piezo output to the PA system (or acoustic amp) at the same time. The P-22 can also be plugged into just a guitar amp with one cable. Using this route you can use the third knob which makes it possible to blend the amount of piezo and 53/10 pick up tones desired, cleaner (more acoustic) or more electric tones depending on preference. On stage a guitarist can switch mid song from a gorgeous acoustic sound to playing a fully charged electric guitar by simply moving a switch. If you check out the videos in the link below you can hear guitarists and producers talking about (and demonstrating) these features. The P-22 has a lush acoustic tone but it is also a fine electric guitar with newly designed, tonally versatile (single and humbucker) 53/10 pick ups. Like all the current PRS guitars the P-22 has truly functional volume and tone knobs with a full range of tonal options. 

Through the years I have owned a few Paul Reed Smith guitars which are made here in Maryland. The company was formed in 1985 and gained initial notoriety from Carlo Santana's endorsement of their guitars. From the beginning PRS guitars were known for their versatility - a musician could use a PRS guitar for a session's gig or on stage and have the tones of various Fender (single coil) or Gibson (humbucker) guitars in one instrument. This was a revolutionary creation in a guitar and one that many professional musician's embraced. My most memorable experience of a PRS guitar's versatility came in 1993 when I saw Los Lobos play in a small club for Clinton's inauguration. David Hidalgo was playing a gold top PRS that from song to song would shift, sounding like a Gibson Les Paul to a Fender Strat or maybe a Tele, just from changing the position of the five way rotary switch on the guitar. Los Lobos use a variety of guitars and amps when recording much of it for a classic, warm vintage tone. Hidalgo was playing a PRS that night because of the tonal options, and convenience of it on stage. I am not trying to imply the early PRS guitars were dead ringers for a vintage Gibson or Fender but they came close enough to be useful back then.

Right up to today the flashiness of many of the PRS guitars, the color options and insane flaming or quilted maple tops, has probably turned off as many guitarists as it has attracted. One could dis PRS because of this flashiness, the steady release of limited editions (the Dragon models for example), or the collector's snatching them up (not unlike Leica hoarders who never use them). Seriously how can you play a $10,000.+ guitar with a 200 piece dragon inlay of abalone, mother of pearl and turquoise? Partially for these reasons, and interest in vintage instruments, many guitarists have dismissed PRS for decades. In addition, for many musicians the pursuit of a magical vintage instrument (high priced and becoming more rare by the day) is the ultimate goal. Finding a fine sounding, mojo laden vintage guitar is hard to do, especially one costing less then a new car. This pursuit is made all the more difficult because quality control in the 50s and 60s was less than consistent and many of the guitars were never particularly good sounding from the start. This historical obsession has many believing the best guitars (and guitar designs) have already come and gone. Several once creative companies such as Fender and Gibson have sat back for decades and reproduced lesser quality versions of their classic guitars from 50 years ago.

Most young guitarist start out emulating a favorite player's style and tone and there is a good chance that involves a Fender or Gibson guitar. Signature models and re-creations (if only cosmetically) of a few historic models are very popular and drive the market. Starting out enamored with say Jimmy Page, Kurt Cobain, or even Joe Pass is part of the appeal of vintage instruments (or copies) for players. They want that specific sound they've heard from famous guitarists and believe it is all about the equipment. When you think of rock guitarists it is generally easy to pinpoint their sound to specific guitars, amps and effect pedals. Jimi Hendrix (Fender Strat and Marshall amp), Neil Young ( 53 Gibson Les Paul and Fender Deluxe), Tom Verlaine (Jazzmaster and Vox) for example*. Obviously many guitarist have an arsenal of instruments, amps, and pedals but my point is most are known for a particular, recognizable tonal quality or sound (Santana and his PRS guitar). The genre of jazz guitar has generally been limited to large hollow body instruments, often using the neck pick up for mellow, soft tones. More contemporary jazz guitarist such as Sonny Sharrock, Bill Frisell, or John Scofield have signature tonal qualities as well, a sound consistent in all their music.

I have owned numerous vintage Gibson and Fender guitars. Fender Jazzmasters, Jaguar, Tele JR., Custom Shop Strat, as well as Gibson 330s, a 335, and a Tennessean. I am not a great or even good guitarist by my own standards but I have a very good ear for music and guitar in particular. Besides my difficulties with playing guitar I have been frustrated by most of the guitars listed above for consistent, technical reasons. Most mass produced guitars have too thin and narrow a neck (described as a "fast neck") causing me to fumble around hitting strings I don't want to. Secondly, the bridge pick ups on the vast majority of guitars were always too bright for me, painfully so, to the point of my not using them. Which leads to the third major problem, the tone knobs and volume knobs are not very useful. You might have a knob that is marked 1-10 but if you dial them back to say 7 any tonal quality of the guitar's sound is lost. They sound like you've placed a pillow over your speaker. All of the above problems have been perpetuated by these manufacturers for decades, not only introducing no improvements but letting the quality of build and materials go downhill. As mentioned earlier the big guitar companies are content with repeating the same guitar designs, both cosmetically and electronically for their customers who generally believe the late 50s and early 60s were the pinnacle of cool, best sounding and playing guitars.

PRS guitars could easily rake in the dough by reproducing guitars they designed and built 25 years ago. But Paul Reed Smith is not interested in making the same guitars over and over, an admirable position and one I want to promote and support. Paul Reed Smith and the PRS company has made a commitment to innovation and serious, steady efforts to improve upon the guitar (electric and acoustic) and quite recently amps. For me PRS innovation became crystal clear in 2008 when they released the first 57/08 equipped guitars. On the surface one could have perceived these 57/08 pick ups as a marketing ploy, an attempt to sucker in those interested in vintage tone. The name 57/08 is a combination of 1957 classic Gibson Humbuckers and 2008 PRS manufacturing date. In reality the 57/08 pick ups were the result of years of research trying to figure out why some vintage guitars had magical tone (specifically mid to late 50's Les Pauls) and others built at the same time were mediocre. The conclusion (simplified) was it had to do with the wire used and the machine that wrapped the pick ups. By modern standards the wire's thickness was far from uniform with a wide variation from the winding pattern of the machine. PRS located the original wire used on 50's Gibson Les Paul guitars and the actual machine used to wind the wire. Thus was born the 57/08 pick up manufactured from this vintage wire and machine.

The fact is anyone I know who has played a PRS 57/08 equipped guitar became a believer. For me it took less then 5 minutes in the music store to hear what I wanted to know. These pick ups sounded like what I had been looking for in numerous other guitars, a thick, rounded tone with absolutely no painful bright or thin tones, not even from the bridge pick up. Rolling off the volume knob offered additional clarity, and backing off on the tone knob softened the sound without killing the guitar's tone! Each year since 2008 PRS has made some changes and options to these pick ups, releasing 59/09 and 53/10 versions, and most recently the narrow field versions of the 57/08. All of these pick up changes are exciting with clearly noticeable changes in tone and astounding sonic variety within any one guitar. The most recent variation in fact are the uncovered, block shaped 53/10 pick ups on the P-22 which have amazing clarity as well as a modern, massive tone.**

We can look forward to the PRS P-22's innovative construction and design adding to the possibilities for musical expression and expanding what we will be hearing live and from recordings. The P-22 guitar has so much unique to offer, abilities never before available. But it also has the qualities of every modern PRS instrument. Overall, across the line (including their reasonably priced SE series) PRS builds well crafted guitars with amazing quality control. The 57/08 pick ups and subsequent pick ups are highly responsive to the player's attack on the strings. All their guitars have truly useful volume/tone knobs and substantial, nicely shaped necks. The current, 21st century line of PRS guitars and the P-22 in particular make the possibilities for expression appear to be infinite for an accomplished musician on stage or in the studio.

* Interestingly you have someone like Neil Young favoring one 1953 Gibson Les Paul named Old Black (actually a gold top underneath the black paint) and still using a small Fender Deluxe amp over 50 years old. Then you had Jimi Hendrix who played any number of Fender Stratocasters right off the shelf and discarded them without a second thought. And he was playing through a wall of Marshall amps. Both musicians have recognizable tone and personal style, but defined and expressed themselves very differently as regards equipment and it's importance. They also share what Bob has referred to as a "special relationship with electricity". Some times it sounds to me like they are not so much playing guitars as they are the power of electricity.

Much credit is due Brian Meader at The Guitar Sanctuary for my knowledge and understanding of Paul Reed Smith guitars.  For decades Brian has guided me to PRS guitars and the tone I was seeking but could barely describe. He has the rare ability to describe and demonstrate tone and features clearly and never steer you in the wrong direction. He has prevented me from buying far more guitars then I purchased from him. 


Spotify: "No Ads for Awhile" list by Ulyssestone

Bob Burnett: there's a blogger somehow connected to Spotify  who goes by the name Ulyssestone.  Thank you whomever you are. Ulyssestone has a blog titled Spotify Classical Playlists. In addition to the blog, "the U" assembles playlists and compilations. A few to my liking include: John Cage: A Chronological Collection on Spotify, Karlheinz Stockhausen A Chronological Playlist, Aaron Copland: A Complete Chronological Catalog.  These are all healthy compilations; the Copland one has 273 tracks and over 20 hours of music plus there's the added bonus that the compilation was specifically arranged in historical order. The Stockhausen playlist has been very helpful. I've always liked a few of his compositions (Hymnen, Zyklus, Kontackte) but there can be great barren stretches for me in his overall body of work.  This 37 track/7 hour  compilation has been a very insightful way to discover a wider range of work at the right price; the $10 monthly flat fee. Stockhausen CDs have always been expensive (looks like about $33 for a single disc these days) so the risk factor is greatly increased when experimenting.  There's one indispensable Ulyssestone list that I frequently visit titled  No Ads For Awhile.  It's a compilation of long duration contemporary compositions--88 tracks make for a running time of three days.  There's a nice sampling of Morton Feldman (Piano and String Quartet, For Bunita Marcus, Triadic Memories) as well as many more names I'm consistently drawn to: John Cage, Anthony Braxton, Eliane Radique, Erik Satie (42 Vexations), Phil Niblock, David Tudor (Rainforest--a piece he composed for Merce Cunningham), Iannis Xenakis, Tom Johnson, Pauline Oliveros and Terry Riley just to give a general idea.

Since original posting: I just discovered Ulyssestone did an expansive Bob Dylan compilation too.

If you have Spotify I suggest you search Ulyssestone and run through the list of compilations assembled. There are many others that raise curiosity beyond the ones I mention here.


Erstwhile Update: Keith Rowe-Sachiko M "Contact"

Bob Burnett: I've spent time with Contact in two different settings; once in the middle of the night with headphones and yesterday during a gray afternoon via my stereo system speakers. I found the night listen was meditative and dreamlike while the daytime initially brought recollections of a 30 years in the past listening experience.   

In 1980 This Heat released the EP Health and Efficiency. While side one was rock-based, side two, titled Graphic/Varispeed, was 11 minutes of overlapping long sine wave generator-like tones. The record jacket stated the listener was to decide at which rpm it was to be played.   At the time my ears happily perceived it as a constant tone with little variation. I had a conversation with a friend about how I'd always wanted a record like this. (I guess I hadn't made it to LaMonte Young yet.)  While playing it on my late night radio show a listener called up and said "hey...there's something wrong with the radio station's signal...it's like....test patterns".  I kept him on the line and calmly acted like I was flipping switches in hopes of rectifying the perceived problem.  "Any better? No?  Okay..hold on.....now?"  I slowly faded in something else and he excitedly told me everything was working again.

First listening impressions of the locked-in sine waves that commence Contact brought back a glimpse of my impressions of Graphic/Varispeed.  I  looked it up to test my 30 year memory of a single long sine wave was as accurate as my memory had made it.  Luckily, I found Graphic/Varispeed posted on youtube.  It struck me as quite tame and vastly different than my first impressions; nothing close to the single frequency pattern happening in what I was hearing on Contact.

While my  This Heat listening memories were quite altered by time, the first disc of Contact carry an unmistakably constant Sachiko M-generated high frequency sine wave for roughly the first 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, the sine waves vary into a range of higher pitches, various durations and visceral blips. I found myself processing the initial wave in different ways; sometimes it was full center of attention and other times it seemed to absorb into a larger phase cancellation-like swath.  Keith Rowe performed textural sound improvisations throughout.  His touch beautifully connected to the sine waves.  Sometimes the literal knowledge of guitar strings exist but for the most part the execution is gentle, textural surface contact and impedance-laced interplay.

As I listened to the first disc the experience evolved into a mental picture of Sachiko M's sine waves as a taut line of rope or wire and Rowe's colorings as rapid-winged birds fluttering around the line.  After 20 minutes the piece developed to a diversity of Sachiko M contact mic pops and blips, much more sporadic sine waves and further development of Rowe's elegant and varied touch.  I hung on every nook and cranny of progress and kept reaching for the volume wanting more and more. Volume in this case didn't make it louder but enhanced the textures and sound presence.   

I'm sure Contact will continue to evolve for me.  Who knows, maybe I'll be fortunate to recall it when I'm 80 and listening to something else. For current times, I'm happy it brought a chance to reflect on a past moment in developing as a listener and re-frame that listening step in light of this wonderful example.


Today's MOG: Bennie Maupin

Bob Burnett: I've recently jumped to the world of cloud audio via both Spotify and MOG. While far from the be-all and end-all of music listening, I'm pleased since for roughly $10 per month per account I'm able to 1) significantly reduce my CD library holdings 2) re-visit or discover albums I never had or let go of long ago(such as the Bennie Maupin's early ECM release The Jewel in the Lotus now playing in the background) 3) check-in on music mentioned in reviews, "best of" lists to potentially spare myself from buyers remorse; owning a CD raved about by many but far from something I need to own.

It's a bit excessive to have both Spotify and MOG but I've found they're libraries differ enough to justify having both. For example, Spotify seems to have a much deeper collection of independent/contemporary music that is more to my liking such as a far deeper digital bin of Machinefabriek and more John Cage/ Morton Feldman releases. The search architecture of Spotify is far superior. I found an Erik Satie piano album that is terrific (Reinbert de Leeuw-Satie Piano Works) because of the visual interface . MOG seems to have generally better audio quality and a much wider range of ECM releases--seems the entire catalog is available. For now, that's reason enough for me. I'm pretty sure I can sell off my pretty vast collection of ECM cds and break-even for at least a year or two with MOG.

Another other benefit of the cloud option is it works well for my office listening. I'm very fortunate to be in a work environment that allows me to have a nice sound system and play what I want to. (BB-very little push-back except for the time I played several CDs of Anthony Braxton's Piano Quartet, Yoshi's 1994. I got a few looks of bewilderment.) I've connected my computer to my office sound system rig and can rummage around as I wish. In the past, I'd have had to make a choice of a CD, pop it in and go with that. Still, not bad (and still a viable option) but the cloud option is a nice diversion from the somewhat rigid nature of less-than spontaneous and specific listening that occurs with CDs.


Sarasota Modern

Bob Burnett: I recently bought Andrew Weaving's Sarasota Modern, published by Rizzoli. The sticker price is now a very approachable $17.95. The book nicely presents the mid-century modern residential architectural movement that took place in Sarasota.

Here's an excerpt:
Sarasota in the 1950s was a small community graced with an alluring natural beauty. What set it apart from so many Florida beachfront towns was the concentration of artists, writers, and architects who gathered there—including author MacKinley Kantor and architects Paul Rudolf and Ralph Twitchell—a unique confluence of talented and daring architects coupled with a hip crowd willing to take risks. Sarasota was a place in which innovation and experimentation were the order of the day, a place where an architect might run into the local watering hole to shout: "I just invented the sliding glass door."
My family has spent a fair amount of time in Sarasota since the '80s. We're fortunate to have a small "Old Florida" style place with a pool situated on the downtown waterfront. One of my favorite activities is exploring the residential architecture; finding the classics as well as those derived from the influence of the original mid-century modern movement.

Lido Shores is the neighborhood where mid-century modern first took hold and remains the core for many attractive homes. After a circa '90s spate of unfortunate tear-downs for new, mostly McMediterranean construction there's been a movement in place to make people aware of the importance of saving and renovating the '50s era homes.

One fine example is architect Paul Rudolph's The Umbrella House which has been renovated to full glory.

Finally--I'll end with a music connection. My high school-era friend Roger Hudson has moved to the Sarasota area to teach guitar full time at Manatee School for the Arts. He and his wife, Brenda, have recently put into motion plans to purchase a mid-century modern home by architect Ralph Zimmerman. I look forward to my next visit sitting poolside with the Hudson's in hopes I can coerce him to play a few original compositions. He keeps getting better. Below is Roger performing at the 2010 Montreal Guitar Show. Guitars are great but.... I still want to hear his Marimba composition.


Erstwhile Records box

Bob Burnett: Jon Abbey of Erstwhile Records made my day and subsequently my evening. Earlier in the week I received an email announcing the annual Erstwhile February sale. I sent back a reply, some money via PayPal and asked him to be the curator of his own label for me. I had the box (pictured above) waiting for me when I got home.

I've recently been listening to a few Erstwhile releases: Radu Malfatti/Keith Rowe ΓΈ , Keith Rowe/John Tilbury Duos For Doris as two examples. Over the last few years I've also paid keen attention to releases by Toshimaru Nakamura that were on other labels. (Egrets on Samadhisound and the duet with Tetuzi Akiyama Post Impressionism on Spekk)

I decided to go through this box and write up first impressions along the way.

I started tonight for no particular reason with two releases: Greg Kelley/Olivia Block Resolution and Nakamura's maruto. Both made for highly engaged listens for vastly different reasons.

Resolution is a "roll, pitch and yaw" recording; there's not only left-right imaging but depth. While listening with headphones the sound feels like it's 6 inches in front of your nose as well as
behind your head. Kelley manipulates a trumpet with a variety of gushes and breath action--it becomes a new instrument in his hands. Black creates a wide, creative range of sound with electronics and spare, fleeting almost tender moments on piano that to my ears reference Morton Feldman's four note sequences in his Piano and String Quartet (as well as John Tilbury). At times the piano takes on an almost percussive oil drum timbre. On top of it all there's terrific energy with what appears to be found object percussion--very physical and if that's not enough the sound of a wooden floor either being walked on or giving way to the weight of the activity at hand. This is an intense and colorful listen. I enjoyed it very much.

Nakamura's maruto came next. It's a 46 minute execution of his no input mixing board technique. I decided to listen also with headphones since I've found his work comes across best that way. maruto is a wonderfully warm and drifting recording. I know he's presenting a far
more active range of frequencies than I'm capable of hearing but that didn't really matter--while I couldn't hear the range of tones I somehow experienced them as part of the work. At times I felt like I drifted asleep but all the while remained connected to it. There's a deep, penetrating bass presence throughout most of it--soothing and flowing. Another great listen.

Added note: I'm re-visiting maruto via speakers instead of headphones. The low frequency tones are wonderful. This work benefits and expands greatly from the open acoustics of a room.

c60 Rekindle

Bob Burnett: When Kim and I started this blog back in 2007 the music landscape was vastly different. At that time we thought the idea of a blog was to expand our nearly 30 year dialogue about music into written reviews. We hoped people would like what we had to say enough to click on an Amazon link and purchase a cd.

The blog ran out of steam for the most part after a few years. My reasoning was I felt limited by trying to "review" music. We began sharing mixcloud mixes at that time too. That too ran out of steam because, as with reviews, I felt I was making mixes for the sake of the segue instead of having a connection to the music, the execution of the music, etc.

Now here we are in 2012. There's a wider array of music sharing options--as well as blu ray films, streaming media, small independent music labels and people who know a lot more than I do about a wide range of topics whom I feel I should link into c60.

I recently began thinking about re-kindling the blog because I wanted to not just add my thoughts to the cloud about music, but share other blog posts, point to what I found to be interesting and vital work going on and hopefully allow this experience to be fun.

Here's a start: The Peckinpah Trio:

So, welcome, or welcome back. In either case I hope there's something here for you.