I did not know that Beirut was also attacked, some hours earlier, with the same techniques and also by ISIL. The death toll was smaller by raw count, but much larger by population.

تضامنا مع أهل بيروت


Solidarité avec les gens de Paris

oh hey, the books are on sale

Hey, check it out – the Free Court of Seattle books are on sale – ePub only 99¢, and print $5 off for the two novels! Pretty swank.

Also in hey news, the Facebook band page hit 200 likes! That’s awesome, so let’s celebrate with a giveaway of any download you want from the Bandcamp site, including the apparently-we’re-now-allowed-to-say-Grammy-nominated album, Bone Walker. Apparently we’re allowed to say that now!

(Being me, I will of course remind people it is the long list, not the short list that most people think about. Still, we made it past the jury, and apparently that counts. We’re nominated! Yay! (ノ◕ヮ◕)ノ*:・゚✧ )

Anyway, We’ll do it as a drawing. Hit “Like” on this post on the Facebook band page to enter. Everybody who does that is entered.

Alternatively, since most of you aren’t reading this on Facebook, you can drop a comment right here on the official blog to enter. I know that’s an extra step but it’s a Facebook achievement, right? So they get it easier this time.

You’ve got ’till, oh, Wednesday. How’s that?

Looking for the Grammy Awards Long List nominee post? Thank you for listening, and for your consideration.

an xwindows question

On my digital audio workstation, I run two monitors, and I do it in xinema mode. This is because Ardour – like the overwhelming majority of apps ever – wants all its windows to be on one desktop. xinema mode is how Xwindows does that.

It’s great for Ardour. I have mixer on one screen, editor on another, it’s lovely.

But a couple of system updates ago, a lot of apps started getting “better” ideas about where “centre of screen” is, by which I mean, instead of getting centre of monitor, they were getting centre of desktop.

Which means that many applications now start split in half across two monitors. Including, annoyingly, Ardour’s startup menu and open-file menu; it remembers opening positions for main windows but not startup dialogues or splash screens.

This is incredibly annoying.

So is there a way for it to get, idk, “monitor centre” when it asks for “screen centre,” or to set a default location for unspecified-position windows, or… stuff? Because yeah. Annoying. So annoying.

Looking for the Grammy Awards Long List nominee post? Thank you for listening, and for your consideration.

very shiny review and auxiliary couch room viewscreen

Hey, remember that show last Friday? We got a really nice review from Howlin’ Hobbit. Thanks for coming and for the review! :D

I’d write a longer post, but, well, Fallout 4 got here. So, yeah. Oh, so did the new couch, which is nice, because I moved the old couch up into another, more remote room in the Lair (electronics and sewing, if you really want to know) and along the way kind of duplicated the main couch room’s arrangement, which means that we now have an Auxiliary Backup Couch Room.

And that means we need an Auxiliary Couch Room viewscreen, since the primary Couch Room has a viewscreen, which, if you want to go old school, means the Auxiliary Couch Room viewscreen really ought to look something like this thing from Star Trek, right?

And I was thinking “well, this seems to be important now,” and I was thinking about what to do about that (if anything) when I realised that oh hey, we have a really old sunflower G4 iMac lying around, and I seem to recall something about its screen being all thick-border and curved-corners, and I bet I can figure out at least one of its passwords (success!) so…

…there we go. Sorted.

Incidentally, did you know there’s a Firefox branch specifically for PowerPC OS X antiques? It’s called TenFourFox, because it’s for OS X 10.4. (And 10.5, but presumably it’s 10.4 users who care.) So I have installed a modern-standards browser on its 80gb hard drive (lol 80 gigs) and wow does it eat CPU, but it works if you give it time, and VLC 0.9.iforget is still on the archived builds site and so it has that now, and talks to the Lair’s media server, and that actually works okay! So, well, yeah! Auxiliary Couch Room viewscreen engage.

I spent way too much time on that today. Also too much time on this post, if I want to be honest about it. ‘Scuse me while I try to actually get some work done now. XD

not amused

Getting Up an Hour and a Half Early for a Phone Call That Doesn’t Happen makes Solarbird Go Something Something.

(There is supposed to be a rather substantial delivery. Actually two, because aside from Fallout 4, there’s several large boxes of materials. Okay, a couch. But that’s not supervillainy enough and it’ll come in several boxes. AND I DON’T KNOW WHEN BECAUSE THEY DIDN’T CALL.)

(Damn I’m sleepy.)

So what’s up with your day?

eta: godDAMMIT

We’re writing about the order(s) XXXXXXXXXXXXX

We wanted to let you know that your package may not arrive on time due to extreme weather conditions or an unforeseen natural event. Shipping carriers in the area of your delivery address or cities along the delivery route are reporting delivery delays because of these conditions. UPS will deliver the package as soon as possible. We are sorry about this unavoidable delay and we appreciate your patience.

The package tracking number is XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX. The items listed below are included in this package:

  1. Fallout 4 – PlayStation 4


eta2: The “extreme weather conditions” are LIGHT FOG.

10,000 wax cylinders

UCSB digitised 10,000 old wax cylinder recordings and has put them all online. Since they’re all public domain, which is awesome, the opportunities to play around with and even insert into recordings is essentially unlimited.

BoingBoing has an article up which describes how they still have 2,000 in their collection to record. You can help by “adopting” a cylinder. Or, you can just go straight to the online archive. Some of them are just bizarre.

The craziest and best thing about these – conceptually, anyway – is that they were all recorded mechanically. Electric recording didn’t exist yet, so microphones what even are those? No, these were recorded using giant funnels aimed at the performer, who performed as loudly as they reasonably could – at which they had practice, performing in unamplified halls – and a needle etched the grooves directly into the cylinders.

And with the earliest cylinders, those would be the ones sold. They’d do however many at a time they could manage to fit into a room, so you’d get maybe 40 recorded at once, then perform again. Some cylinders kept being recorded that way for years – Edison’s Concert series in particular.

Very quickly, they moved to recording a master that they’d then physically replicate, either using copying or casting techniques – copying yielding awfully poor results, casting techniques doing far better. But either way, cylinder recordings are basically fossilised sound waves, and that is pretty much just deeply awesome.

Looking for the Grammy Awards Long List nominee post? Thank you for listening, and for your consideration.

how horrible

Wow, the LDS church hierarchy are going after their own kids. That’s pretty vile.

Not only are non-celebate LGBT people now going to be automatically “apostate” and called up for excommunication – there was a new announcement of policy about it, if you missed it here’s the link – but they’re requiring children of LGBT couples to denounce their parents to stay in the church.

From the article linked above:

Under the new rules, a child of a same-sex couple may join the church only after age 18 by meeting these conditions: commits “to live the teachings and doctrine of the church and specifically disavows the practice of same-gender cohabitation and marriage”; not live with a parent who is in a same-sex relationship; and receives approval from local church leaders and the church’s First Presidency — the uppermost leadership of the church.

That’s that kind of family-denouncement shit that came out of the Khmer Rouge regime, and was encouraged by Stalin. Orwell wrote about that in 1984. I’m not even exaggerating, those are the other actual examples I can think of.

Well, that, and freaky fundamentalist cults which try to isolate members from other support systems, like their families. They do that sort of thing. Not that the Mormons have any history of that.

Being queer but not mormon, this doesn’t directly affect me. I’m disappointed – no, repulsed – but I don’t take a direct hit here.

But nonetheless – how horrible.

Looking for the Grammy Awards Long List nominee post? Thank you for listening, and for your consideration.

the first band you’re in

They say the first band you’re in should be a cover band, and while in a lot of ways my musical history is the opposite of typical, in that way, it wasn’t. The first band I was in was Three Good Measures, and it was a mostly-Great-Big-Sea cover band. We did some other music as well – Billy Bragg, non-GBS Newfoundland trad, a couple of Popular Monsters tracks, Ivar Haglund (no, really, “Acres of Clams”), things like that.

But the majority of material? Great Big Sea. When we came back as Twelve Good Measures for a one-shot video contest? Great Big Sea.

Most people, I think, if they were honest with themselves, knew that the last GBS tour was a farewell tour. They’d just released a box set that had very little new new material – plenty of unreleased old stuff, but very little new. We saw them at the tour’s start, Tor Bay, Newfoundland, and it was like going back in time to 1998. (Which was awesome.) Darrell Power, the original bassist, even came back for “Excursion Around the Bay,” his old signature song with the band:

Later, on the other side of the tour, we saw them on the other side of the continent, in Vancouver, at the Expo. That was a lot less like 1998, but it was still a great show.

But they never called it a farewell tour. And even after they lost Séan McCann, they didn’t make it official. With only half the original band left – and with Séan being so critical to everything they were – I didn’t see any way they could honestly continue.

Finally, almost two years after their last show, Alan Doyle has said it – Great Big Sea is retired. I’m fine with that; they had a hell of a run (20 years is a lot) and the last couple of real albums, honestly, sounded to me like they were finished. They sounded like they wanted to do other things.

While it’s sad – they meant a bunch to me as a band, and as a musical force – it’s good to have official word, and it’s good – as Alan said – not to see anyone “fighting over the spoils.” Anna has her own thoughts on the statement over at her blog, including video of the time she almost died from swoon.

I’ll miss them. With the possible exception of DEVO, I’ve never seen any band before or since do a live show with as much impact, and who knows when I’ll ever see it again. But hey, I got to see it, and more than once. So thanks for everything, guys – it’s been great.

Meanwhile, the other band I’m in now – Leannan Sidhe – has a show today with several other bands at Shoreline Community College. 4-6pm, I’m not sure when we’re on. C’mon by!

Looking for the Grammy Awards Long List nominee post? Thank you for listening, and for your consideration.


I feel again like I’m playing catch up, but I’m feeling like I’m actually getting a bit caught up. I’ve started nailing down timing on a special song I’m doing for Conflikt in January; I’ve mostly got past a lot of life-and-business maintenance things that built up while I was out playing a lot this summer (and then got further behind on during the Four Week Flu); I’ve been taking Poison Ivy’s advice on houseplants (also NASA‘s, given that Harvard study); I’m not where I want to be, but it’s steps.

Yesterday’s tech rehearsal for tomorrow’s show at Shoreline Community College went pretty well; that’s 4-6pm, several bands, Shoreline campus, there are a bunch of bands so we only get like 3-4 songs each. We’ve been rehearsing four. What finally happens will depend upon what it’s like at the show. Visitor parking is free after 4pm, apparently, so that’s fun.


Jeri Lynn – Leannan Sidhe’s cellist – is starting to dip her toes into effects pedals. She’s got at least one new trick she’ll be doing live at the show. Should be fun. See you there!

Looking for the Grammy Awards Long List nominee post? Thank you for listening, and for your consideration.

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