Headlights, James Vincent McMorrow
Trying to take in the beauty of spring even though the heart is heavy with everything going on.
I have been completely taken by the podcast series Wind Of Change. It an 8 part podcast that reveals the CIA’s hand in the 90’s hit single, Wind of Change by the German rock band, Scorpians. Rolling Stone has a story about this podcast and how it all happened. I highly recommend giving it a listen. Unfortunately, the series is only available on Spotify instead of the open internet, thankfully it’s not behind a Spotify paywall.
Listening to the song and the podcast and it’s easy to understand how and why this one song became the rallying cry for hope and freedom during the end of the Cold War.
Music has that power.
We all know the impact of music in our own country during the Civil Rights era. Music intertwined with civic activism. It served to release our frustration. Our desire to reject the status quo. To breathe hope into life. To aspire, connect, and push for something better for the nation and the world.
Of course, there is a meaningful contrast between the CIA backed Scorpian single and Bob Dylan, CCR, Same Cooke, Nina Simone and others. These 1960s protest artists wrote songs from the heart that gave voice to hope and change.
Music has that power. And I can imagine protest music coming back to our lives as we face enormous challenges at this moment.
Kyoto, Phoebe Bridgers
Last week my oldest daughter turned 21. We decorated the basement into a “club” and threw her a party—just the five us in the family. We drank too much alcohol, made TikToks, played beer pong, and had a delicious, yet simple dinner.
A few months ago, if I had told her that was how she was going to ring in her 21st birthday, she would have been pretty disappointed. She didn’t see her friends. She didn’t go to her favorite restaurant. She didn’t even get to use her ID to get served at a real bar.
But that evening she told us it was a perfect birthday.
These days are riddled with stress, frustration, and sadness. But they have also provided a sense of gratitude like never felt before.
I have been taking steps to improve my set up for home video calls.
My friend and business partner Nabeel suggested I download Webcam Settings to add some powerful controls to my existing webcam. The app performs as advertised and I was able to make some modifications to exposure, backlighting, contrast and zoom effects.
I am very happy I took his advice. Big improvement.
You Can’t Put Your Arm Around A Memory, Billie Joe Armstrong
original by Johnny Thunders
Earlier in the year, prior to our shelter in place mode, we made a trip to St Barts. As I look back on these photographs I am immensely grateful we were able to have this time together as a family.
(Photographs made with a Pentax 67ii and a Yashica T4 on Kodak Portra 400 film)
Just some misc musings for today’s post…
One of the biggest global stories that broke today is that China misled the global community with regards to their COVID outbreak. I worry other nations will follow this example which is very scary.
I also worry about businesses that rely on public health information as they evaluate their decisions. Consider Apple re-opened up their China stores a few weeks ago no doubt based on positive (fictional) signs from the Chinese government.
As follow up to my ongoing guitar lesson/practice post, I canceled my Youscian subscription. I really couldn’t handle the content & design even though the instruction was pretty good.
My new guitar tutor is basically YouTube and a subscription to Ultimate Guitar. There are a ton of guitar lessons on YouTube. I learn the basics from watching a YT video and then I find the corresponding sheet music for the song on Ultimate Guitar for daily practice. It’s really great.
I’ll end this post with a link to a TikTok of me and my daughter. I am likely going to regret posting this in the future but for now if it will bring a smile or two to others then I’m good. And these days I’m pretty much doing anything my kids ask me to do, regardless of how embarrassing it is.
Life in Quarantine, Benjamin Gibbard
new track from ben. somber and yet beautiful.