Archive for November, 2015

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.

money flows to the creator

I’ve had a couple of people trying to get me to enter music/songwriting contests that have entry fees. Maybe it’s just my fiction and nonfiction writing background that’s saying “these are always bullshit” – and that’s because in writing, they are always bullshit – but that’s the reaction I’m having.

Still, this is music, where everything is worse for the creator than in writing. And so what do I know, anyway?

The two contests that people are trying to get me to enter are The Akademia Music Awards and International Songwriting Competition 2015. The Akademia people want $10 for a song entry or $20 for an album entry, and the ISC people want like $35. I’d never heard of either of these before people started trying to get me to enter both of them.

Like I said, in writing? Entry fees stink of scam and bullshit. But it’s music and songwriting, so I don’t even know. I have a number of musician followers – anybody out there have a more informed opinion?

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

dotted maple

Dotted Maple

Bigger at Flickr, as usual.

I hope everybody had a fun Halloween! The air here smells of snow – there’s none at our altitude, but it’s started falling in the mountains, and even in the passes, and it smells wonderful.

I love this time of year, I really do.

Even if it turns out that no, I haven’t fixed the Safari problem that keeps me from being able to do things like edit comments and dates and sometimes keeps me from scheduling posts. Nothing works, and when it does work, it doesn’t work for long – it just won’t stay fixed.

Moving bookmarks across browsers is such a pain in the ass. Oh well.

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

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