Saturday, May 24, 2008

May Be

Much to update, and not much... I have the recording of our Colossal Inertia show, haven't digitized them yet, but with this long weekend, more time to work it. We're playing a show this upcoming Friday at our rehearsal space - Oddstad Gallery in Redwood City. It'll be more elaborate since we're putting it on ourselves, but we're still making sure it's top-notch. In related news, we're moving our space - Oddstad's raising the rent, so we're moving to RHL down the road. Bigger place, which is cheaper, if a little rougher. Still sharing with "Big Eye", a co-workers band.

Nicole had her graduation last weekend from Mills College. Outstanding journey, and accomplishment for her, congrats! Bonnie's mom came up from Corona del Mar, great to see her. Bonnie was busy Saturday with a lot of graduation things, so she & I got to spend more time together - drivin in the car, gettin coffee, waiting in the frustrating line of traffic trying to get into the Mills lot... Then in the afternoon, we hosted a BBQ, with all the folks that helped Nicole along the way. It was good to gather the community, especially a few people who haven't seen each other in a while. She's going into a flagship Master's program for Public Policy next year at MIlls, so the journey continues.
Summer movie season begins! Could be an exciting time - Iron Man was great, Speed Racer was very interesting, haven't seen Narnia : Prince Caspian yet, got to see an early screening of "Indiana Jones IV". I predict that'll be the top movie of the year, I really enjoyed the ride watching it, but thinking back on it, it becomes less rosy (SPOILERS follow). The action was way over the top (too long and too '1000-bullets-never-hit-anyone' unreal); the pacing was odd between talk and action; and the storyline/invented mythology was too convoluted and ridiculous. The good stuff was very good - the world they inhabit; the depth and subtext of the characters discussing their archaeology; and, of course, just seeing Harrison Ford in action again. Upcoming hilites - Kung Fu Panda (of course, I should plug a DreamWorks pic); Sex and the City (Bonnie's favorite); Dark Knight; The Hulk; Get Smart; Hellboy 2.
The screenwriting class (vetted through DreamWorks) has been going well - got positive feedback on my spec script (about 75% done with the draft) and some inspiration to continue; the direction of the class, has been collaborating on a feature script where we started by pulling 6 characters from others' works, put them into a familiar world (an animation studio), then defined their relationships and built a plot from there. An excellent exercise in group writing, thinking on the fly, developing characters, and it's fun times to boot.
Vocal lessons are useful, too, with Raz Kennedy at Blue Bear School of Music. Learning specifics, and getting exercises to work on. People have been giving a 'performance', which he analyzes, then gives advice on how to hit it stronger. I performed 'Guide Vocal' by Genesis, accompanying on the Stick. He said he was impressed by the power and 'big voice', and wanted to compare it to the original recording before analyzing it, so that'll happen next week. Great assortment of students in the class, from varying levels of professionalism (including one guy who says he's from the Sierra Leone Refugee All-Stars).
Laundry list of other things recently - ran the "Emeryville Shortest Triathlon", which consisted of 100 yard swim, 2.5 mile bicycle ride, 1 mile run. Finished in 18.5 minutes, running was the toughest part - kicked up a boost at the end, but lost it and dropped back aways... Had a day off on Friday, 23rd - went to Six Flags Discovery Kingdom (formerly Marine World). As part of a promotion by Alice Radio , tickets were only $9.73 (to match their FM freq)! So, got out there early & hung out, no rides - mostly checking out the animals. Caught the Shamu show (sorry, I mean, Shouka), and the Bird Theater (with a real-live American Bald Eagle!) - got me inspired again to look into falconry...
Anyway, more soon, and enjoy the Memorial Day weekend yall.


Friday, May 02, 2008

Live Inertia

So, Colossal Inertia, played a gig in San Jose, at The Caravan Lounge, April 19. We were supposed to be opening for The Tell-Tale Heartbreakers on a Saturday night, but they had to cancel due to illness in the band - so, it was us solo. We considered cancelling - there seemed to be some weird pressure from the bar & other band, but no definitive reason, so we went ahead with it!

An odd space - a very clean & well-lit dive bar on Almaden Ave., our 'stage' was a corner of the long, rectangular room, maybe 15'x8'. We kept our set-up rather slim (amps & instruments; smoke machine; a few extra lights), and sensible costumes. They provided a PA for mic's and the keyboard, nothing fancy, no mixing/sound support. Given that, it went well - our playing was mostly solid & discernable, the 30 or so people seemed to get into it (only 5 people from work that I noticed). Since we were the defacto headliners, we were in-line for some $$, but since we only had our warm-up act ready, it fell short of the minimum-45-minutes they were expecting (though I was tipped to 'stretch things out', no one stressed to me how imperative that was - we could've thrown another 15 minutes out somewhere. Way to learn, I guess).

Overall, great start & great confidence builder - our next show's at the end of May!