This article about the Kashmere Stage Band rocked me. A high school band that produced some of the best music of its day. HIGH SCHOOL! What I would not give to get my kid involved in a soul band. Where can I send him or her to a funk bass master to learn a groove. Or to work with a master R&B song arranger. Not in high school for sure.
I think most cities (Atlanta and Charlotte probably more than others) have a few house bands that make the local circuit. But where are the national bands? Not even national, but one that has at least the same level of recognition as a Eric Roberson or Dwele. Where are thee?
It truly is a shame that the knowledge of funk and soul that had it’s heyday in the 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s did not carryover into the 90’s and the aughts. Confunkshun, EWF, The Gap Band, Parliament, Cameo, The Commodores. Where are your children? Did they not follow in your footsteps?
Was it rap and hip hop? The drum machine? Cheap keyboards (although quite a few have worked wonders with them)? Where did the love go?
We need a revival! Everything that is old will be new again. I just wonder in what part of the country will it start. Probably in some out of the way place like Oklahoma or Seattle. I can’t wait for the day.
I recently finished reading Scott Sigler’s Contagious (see my review). After getting online and looking through the author’s website, another of his novels caught my eye. Not necessarily for the title, but the pictures. And I’m not talking about the book cover!
The novel, The Rookie, is about a human playing in the Galactic Football League. A future, rough and tumble version of American football. The reviews of the novel are great. The response from Sigler’s fans are phenomenal!
From the website, Scott has links to official team logos; he’s selling jerseys, hats, and stickers; there’s even an iPhone app! Now this is what I call “customer engagement”. This is the future! Bringing your fans that extra level of involvement to drive loyalty, respect, and of course dollars!
New authors (and existing ones if you can run with the times) take note! Your fanbase can become just as intense. This will be what the market demands as the social space of the internet further moves into our everyday lives.
In 1960, a crazy Air Force pilot rode a balloon up to 102,000 feet (a third of the way into “space”) and jumped. Wearing a special suit, Joe Kittinger eventually reach 600+ miles per hour in his free fall, breaking the sound barrier. The fall and subsequent parachute landing still stands in the record books.
Now, 50 years later, another crazy man wants to break that record. Felix Baumgartner is currently training and this year plans to ride up to 120,000 feet. Felix’s suit will be using today’s technology and his team will be able to monitor his descent from the ground. He too will break the sound barrier in his dive.
All I know is he better have an HD camera so that he can share with the world, as I doubt I’ll ever attempt this myself. But you never know…
In my last post, I just finished a review of Scott Westerfield’s Leviathan. A great book. What I did not mention was the artwork. I love to see small bits of artwork within a novel. I know that when reading the Harry Potter series, the beginning chapter artwork was a wonderful way to help me visualize the characters and the environment.
And the artwork in Leviathan is fantastic! Just take a look at the sample from his site at the top of this post! While not an image used in Leviathan, this will give you some idea of his flavor. Reading through Scalzi’s and Westerfield’s Big Idea post, I saw the link to the artist responsible: Keith Thompson. I would recommend that any aspiring artist take a look through his gallery. Very original, very vivid and detailed. And if you happen to be a game designer or author looking for an artist for your next game or novel, then give him a call. You can’t go wrong…
The first decade of the new millennium has passed. Gone by in a blink. For a while the Twitter hashtag #10yearsago was going around yesterday. Thinking back on where I was and what I was doing 10 years ago really humbles me. Three different houses. Six different jobs. Friends lost. Babies born.
The cycle of life continues to churn, oblivious to human celebrations of the passage of time.
In ten more years my oldest kid will be going on 23. My daughter will be working on 21. Wow! At 23, I was married and expecting my first child. Wow again!
I look forward to walking into the new decade with my head held high, full of promise and adventure. Here are some experiences I am imposing on my family to happen in the next 10 years:
- Trip to Portland to visit friends and hike parts of Mt. Hood
- Rafting trip in the Grand Canyon
- Weekend in NYC
- Relaxing for a weekend in Bali
- Visiting friends in Italy
- Starting a business (or two or three)
- Comic Con, Dragon Con, or East Coast Black Age of Comics Con (or all three)
- Star Wars Celebration V
Dream big family! Our opportunities are boundless.