Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Browsing... offline, no less

Just odds and ends today. CD thoughts coming, but in a separate post. Pardon the free association.

The Udden quintet was great last night. Of course, I'm still at the point where any real live music here is good, but this especially so. The rhythm section- Jorge Rodeor and Richie Barshay- have played together so much, and trust each other so completely- it creates a trust level for the whole band, and anything goes. The form and the time, without ever disappearing, becomes like taffy, absolutely malleable. They covered Steve Lacy's "Bones" beautifully, which reminded me exactly how unbelievably personal Steve's music is. There was no attempt to cop Steve by anyone, least of all the saxophonists, yet I could practically see him in the room. He also covered a Pharoah Sanders tune which I'll certainly appropriate for my upcoming Lily Pad gig. Sadly, Jeremy did not pull out his Bangles cover, but you can't have everything.

So the Red Sox let one more cog in the World Series wheel go this week, trading Bronson Arroyo for Wily Mo Pena. I love the idea of cheering for a Wily Mo (sounds like something straight out of a Warner Brothers cartoon), and due to catcher Tony I have nothing but warm thoughts for baseball and people named Pena. But I’m never crazy about trading pitching, especially durable pitching, for hitting, no matter how far he hits it.

That said, (and with the news of Vinateri signing with the Colts) you can't but notice that the Red Sox and now Patriots are less and less and less resembling the teams that won the championships. I know that when I actually get to see a Sox game on the boat this summer, I'll spend the first three innings saying "who?" I know that's inevitable in the business of sports, but it's like watching an ex-girlfriend keep getting plastic surgery.

Not that any of my ex-girlfriends have actually done that...

One of the nice things about my temp gig (other than the fact that they’re basically paying me to write this) is that’s it’s very near a Coop. For the non-Bostonians, the Coop (originally the Harvard Coop) started out as the Harvard student bookstore, and has morphed into a local chain of college bookstores- MIT has one, as do some of other schools. And it’s a good bookstore- aside from the fact that you’ll find obscure microeconomics and biophysiology textbooks, it beats the pants off your average Barnes and Noble. And since I’m a quick eater, I end up spending time there almost every day. Today, along with a bunch of Red Sox books, I found Bill Simmons Now I Can Die in Peace, his personal, fractured account of Red Sox fandom in general, and the World Series run in particular. The first book in a long time I can recommend based solely on the prologue. Really, really funny, and he stops to explain enough baseball and/or Red Sox lore along the way to keep the non-fans engaged without boring the diehards. (Music writers, myself included, please take note.) However, it is $16 minimum, so I’ll probably end up getting it from the library or reading it on lunchbreaks.

Over a week of lunch breaks, I did read the graphic novel (read, comic book with at least one multisyllable word per page.) V for Vendetta. Liked it, looking forward to seeing the movie, knowing full well it will probably barely resemble the book. (Alan Moore, the writer, pulled his name from it for that reason.) Will report back- just not this week.

Going down to New York for a brief hit. Beyond visiting friends, I’ll be looking for new music/yoga/general hipness to try out. I feel so out of touch. Recommendations (especially good ones) are appreciated.

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