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  • January 29, 2007

    Priorities

    I read today that Victoria Beckham — a new resident of LA — won’t become a Scientologist because, as she put it, “there’s no way I’d spend any money on that nonsense.” That’s right. She won’t become a Scientologist, at least partially because it’s a rip-off. She feels the same way about Kabbala: too expensive. (Kabbala bracelets are nearly $30.)

    She was, however, willing to pay $44,000 to have her teeth whitened. Learning of her sense of priorities, AEJ and I have to say that we now find her a bit more appealing than we did in the past. Plus, her husband has a good haircut.

    I’m off to FSU tomorrow for performances of “Turbine” and “Strange Humors.” The program also includes Jonathan Newman’s piece, “As the Scent of Spring Rain.” Full report to follow!

    0 Comments

    January 27, 2007

    Tasty Asian Fun

    AEJ and I made homemade beef teriyaki for dinner last night. Holy damn, it was tasty.

    On Tuesday, I fly to Florida State to work with Rick Clary on Friday’s performance of “Turbine.” I’m pretty optimistic that this’ll be a great show. Rick and his wife are putting me up while I’m there, and I’m sure that’ll be a good time.

    The forecast is for rain in LA today. It seemed like it had been quite a while since any “significant” rainfall here, and this morning on the radio, it was claimed that it hasn’t rained any truly measurable amount since July 1. Yeah, July 1.

    Really, I got nothin’ today. It’s a totally gray day, and I’d rather be playing Zelda.

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    January 21, 2007

    Two Thumbs Up

    AEJ’s movie, “Seraphim Falls,” got two Thumbs-Up on Ebert & Roeper this weekend. The movie, starring Pierce Brosnan and Liam Neeson, opens in selected cities on Friday the 26th.

    We haven’t seen it, so I don’t know how much of AEJ’s brilliant script made it to the screen, but I think we’re attending a screening this week. Isn’t it crazy that the screenwriter doesn’t see the movie until right before it opens?! If I didn’t hear a piece until it premiered, I’d go nuts.

    You can watch the trailer and check that list of “selected cities” on the film’s official site. Here in LA, it’s playing at The Arclight, which is pretty awesome. It’s all a little surreal. I still can’t believe I saw AEJ’s dialogue on an episode of Ebert & Roeper — and it got 2 thumbs up. There’s also a feature in today’s (Sunday) New York Times Arts & Leisure section. It’s just… well, it’s pretty cool.

    And no matter what they’ve done with her script, there’s no denying that they stuck Pierce Brosnan in a sweet costume. Check out that awesome fluffy coat. I could never pull off such a thing.

    We’re having a little trouble focusing on it, though, because we can’t pull ourselves away from Animal Crossing. Today is the fishing tournament!

    2 Comments

    January 16, 2007

    New Sasparilla CD

    I’ve received permission to post the new recording of the U. S. Air Force Band of Mid America’s performance of “Sasparilla.” It’s the first “studio” recording of the piece, and I love it. They used a real accordion player (no synth, although it almost sounds like one because the intonation is unusually good for an accordion), the sax solo in the middle is swingin’, and the sound quality throughout is the best I’ve heard on any of my music since the Naxos recording of “Redline Tango.” Give it a listen. A big thank you to Captain Donald E. Schofield for not just selecting the piece, but for giving it such a satisfying performance.

    [edit — I just realized that the reason this CD sounds as good as the Naxos CD is because they were recorded by the same engineer — Bruce Leek. Man alive, this guy is good.]


    (Rick Blatti’s custom “Sasparilla” cover.)

    1 Comment

    January 15, 2007

    24 is back

    “24” returned last night — and boy howdy, did it return. It was certainly a strong start. Any show that features the hero killing a guy by biting him to death is ass-kicking in my book. I hope they can keep it strong for the bulk of this season, unlike last season, which I thought sucked.

    February is shaping up to be non-stop busy. I’ll be at Florida State for rehearsals and a performance of “Turbine” from January 30-February 3. My mother is coming to visit LA from February 5-8, and I leave for Atlanta on the 8th to work with David Vandewalker’s band at Harrison High School through February 10. On the morning of the 11th, I fly to Dallas to rehearse “Turning” with the Texas Christian University wind ensemble. Monday the 12th, I’m working with Steve Andre and his group at Grapevine High School (just outside of Dallas) on their premiere of “Turning.” On Wednesday the 14th, I’ll ride with the TCU band to San Antonio for the TMEA convention, stopping for a few performances of “Turning” along the way.

    TCU’s performance of “Turning” is on Thursday the 15th at 8pm at the TMEA convention. I’ll be working with Gary Hill and the Texas All-State band on rehearsals for “Turbine” on Thursday through Saturday, and their performance will be on Saturday afternoon. I finally fly back home to LA on Sunday the 18th, after 10 days of travel including 5 performances. I’ve still never heard “Turning,” but that week, I’ll hear 4 performances by two different groups. Man, I hope that piece is good.

    In other news, last night, AEJ and I made homemade sloppy joes, courtesy of a recipe in the Cooks Illustrated “The Best 30 Minute Recipes” cookbook. Delicious. Of course, it took me an hour to make the 30 minute recipe (I tend to be a little “exacting” — which is a nicer description than “anal”), but it was worth it.

    (The Fritos were not from scratch, just FYI.)

    3 Comments