2008 September at John Mackey's Blog

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  • September 30, 2008

    Off to NYC

    AEJ and I are flying to NYC tomorrow morning.  I’m working on an ASCAP panel for a day, and we’re also going out for some tasty dinners. I know the blog has been disappointingly food-photo-free for some time, but this trip should remedy that.

    Thanks to Steve and Verena for taking care of Loki while AEJ and I are gone. I also apologize in advance to the destruction he will likely bring to your home. Don’t be fooled by his cuteness…

    2 Comments

    September 28, 2008

    UT performs "Kingfishers Catch Fire"

    This afternoon at 4pm Elvis Time (CST), the University of Texas Wind Ensemble will close their program with my piece, “Kingfishers Catch Fire.”  Jerry Junkin will conduct.  I attended a couple of rehearsals over the past few weeks, and I think it’s going to be a fantastic performance.  They’re using six (six!) trumpets for the antiphonal parts at the end.  It’s mighty exciting — and sparkly.

    The concert also includes “Suite Francaise” by Poulenc (one of my favorite composers), “Chant Funeraire” by Faure, “Suite Francaise” by Milhaud (not one of my favorite composers), and “Winds of Nagual” by Michael Colgrass.  The concert will also be webcast, so if you can’t make it in person, you can listen online via the webcast link on this page.

    I was thinking the other day that there are certain words that one can’t use to describe oneself. These words can be used to describe you, perhaps, but once you say them about yourself, they aren’t true anymore. These words include “charming,” “classy,” and “maverick.” For example, if I say, “that guy did a really classy thing,” there’s nothing wrong with that. But if I say, “I am super classy” — then it’s automatically not true, because I’ve just said something fantastically tacky. Or if I say, “that’s one charming fellow” — fine (but admittedly dorky). But if I say, “I have to warn you ladies, that I can be quite the charmer” — inherently false.  “Legit” is another. “I think that story is probably legit” could be true. “You wanna buy my watch? $10. And my offer is totally legit” — not true.

    And I’m not saying that there aren’t, I dunno, mavericks out there, but once you use the word to describe yourself, your use of the word automatically negates the truth of it. If one is referred to by a large group as being a “maverick,” and the word means that you go against a group, using the word to describe yourself just shows that you’re part of said group, thus negating the meaning.  It’s like saying “I’m a rebel.”  If you have to say it, it’s probably not true.

    I assure you that my classy logic is legit.

    And in anticipation of today’s UT concert, I leave you with a photo of conductor Jerry Junkin executing the famous Junkin Bitchslap™.

    5 Comments

    September 24, 2008

    The most expensive band concert ever

    Is it just me, or does Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson…

    look a lot like FSU conductor Rick Clary?

    One of these guys is one of my favorite people. The other, not so much.

    2 Comments

    September 21, 2008

    Woman! Bear me a marching band!

    Eric Whitacre passed this along a few days ago.  It’s an incredibly random sketch by David Cross (from his Mr. Show days) that seems to imagine the film Amadeus — if it instead took place in the era of Sousa. There’s even a reference to sasparilla! You really have to see it…

    3 Comments

    September 18, 2008

    Beef and Lizards

    I haven’t updated in ages, so today, we have two (count ’em — TWO!) blog entries.  I’ve been busy working on “Asphalt Cocktail,” and it’s slow going.  Coming up with material that feels worthy of that title is rough.

    A few photos from the past few days, and both feel decidedly Texas-related. First, a few nights ago, we went for BBQ at Rudy’s. For a Texas chain, it’s mighty tasty — smokey, flavorful, moist brisket — on Wonder bread. Newman would love this place.

    Then we came home and find a new pet on the bathroom wall. I don’t want to know how he got in, but he’s here in the house now — and he’s really fast. No way I’m catching him, but maybe Loki can.

    Back to work, I guess. I need to get a lot done today, because tomorrow, I’m spending the afternoon at UT-Austin. One band is rehearsing “Kingfishers Catch Fire,” and another is rehearsing “Clocking.” Should be fun!

    4 Comments