Les Paul is Gone

He passed away yesterday at the age of 94. This is one of those few times in recent memory where I find myself actually emotionally affected by a celebrity’s death. I’m actually a bit sad. You probably already have heard the highlights of his life and career: inventor of the solid body electric guitar, inventor of multi-track recording, over-dubbing, various delays, and phasing, virtuoso guitarist and composer, and top 40 recording artist from the 1940s – 1960s.

I’ve been playing electric guitar for 20 years and for a few years before that as a kid I wanted to learn how to play…simply because the electric guitar was so damn cool. As a musician I feel immense gratitude to the man who really made the guitar become a “hero” of instruments..no longer relegated to the background but really becoming the lead instrument. Without him modern music simply wouldn’t exist.

Some friends and I had this plan to fly out to New York City for a day just to see Les Paul play at the Irridium jazz club to catch his weekly gig. Now I really feel bad for not making it happen.

Anyway, my guitars and amp seem a bit more precious this morning. We lost a friend, a hero, a teacher and a great explorer. I’ve heard and read various accounts saying that the man was also a genuine nice guy. If you play guitar strum a little over the weekend. I will be.

RIP Les Paul…. you will be missed.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Les_Paul

Spy Tunes and Richard Cheese & Lounge Against the Machine!

Last night we met up with Lisa and Tommy for a fantastic night of cocktails, music and comedy at San Francisco’s famous Bimbos 365 Club!   Opening band Project: Pimento supplied 60s spy/lounge/jazz/rock music that could’ve been an alternate soundtrack to the Connery-era  James Bond films.

Then after a short break, the headliners Richard Cheese & Lounge Against the Machine rocked the main stage.   If you’ve never heard of them, you’re in for a treat.  They take popular rock,rap,metal, and top 40 songs and turn them into swinging lounge music.  Richard Cheese is also a sharp-tongued quick witted comedian who seems to actually feed off  random interrruptions from hecklers in the audience.  He actually told one guy he’d never get a dat making the dolphin noises he was yelling… and then got him to tell us his facebook screen name so that we could all take out our phones and add him as a friend because… there was no other way he’d have any friends.  If you ever have a chance to see them live, please do so! You won’t be dissappointed.

Mr. Sid’s Lounge version 21

Yeah, that’s right people…version 21. This site has been around since 1997… you know I’m gonna mess with it.

It’s been quite sometime since my last post… I’ve had a lot going on and fill you in on my next post.

There may be some minor glitches around the site this week… but I think overall we’re in good shape. Any weirdness will be corrected quickly.

Good night folks!

Tales from Rabbit Castle: Chapter 2

Around 9 in the evening Rory’s mood seemed to change. He would not eat, or hop about. He just sat there shaking with his eyes half closed. We thought it was perhaps nothing and it would pass. We were all up late and around 1:40 in the morning fear set in to our warren. Rory was most likely ill. He still would not eat or drink or hop. Even his mate Hunny couldn’t cheer him up.

After a phone call, I got them into their travel carrier and carefully placed them into the back seat of our car. Kristen sat with them and we drove up to the hold neighborhood and it’s emergency pet clinic.

The veterinarian was a pleasant older lady who was quite perplexed by Rory’s state. He seemed to be in good health. despite his temperature being 5 degrees lower than normal, he showed no signs of illness. We were sent outside to the waiting area. So I tried my best to comfort Hunny who probably had no idea what was happening except that her mate was still in the other room.

I’ll admit I was very worried, in fact scared that something terrible would happen at that moment. I couldn’t help but think of my first rabbit George, who at the age of almost 10 years old, showed the only signs of sickness in his life. It was a tragedy… within 48 hours of looking ill we had to put him down. My mind couldn’t help going back to that moment in time and thinking how unfair it would be this time, if that was indeed his fate tonight. We’ve only had these rabbits for 2 months.

Soon he was brought back to us and he sat safely in his carrier cuddling with Hunny. He had been given a shot of fluids… some vitamins, and something that would keep him hydrated as well as retain body heat. Soon after we were home and they were back in the safety of Rabbit Castle. And this is where this tale of late night apprehension ends. This morning at 7am I went to check up on them and all was well. The same silly hopping around when I brought out the bags of hay. The same bopping of my hands with their foreheads and noses.

So with that episode over, we are now preparing to meet our tax lady and deal with doing our share to bail out the country. Wish us luck!

Happy Republic Day India

 

Today is India’s 60th Republic Day commemorating the adoption of India’s constitution formally creating the world’s largest democracy. This has been a tough year for India with the effects of the world economic crisis and especially with the horrible terrorist attack on Mumbai. But India also sent it’s first spacecraft to the moon, won it’s first individual gold medal in the Olympics and a story by an Indian Author has been turned into most hyped movie around the world: “Slumdog Millionaire”.

Anyone who knows me, knows that I am extremely proud of my heritage. I truly believe that democracy is the next step in human evolution, and so proud of India for being the crazy, colorful, and diverse democracy that it is.

Jai Hind!

Day One!

Like every other blog on earth, I need to say something about today! 8 years of the worst government this nation has seen are over and today hope walked back into Washington DC. My friend Sha Sha dropped in this morning just in time to watch the inauguration with me, Rory, Hunny and Kristen. My life is great and I’m usually a happy guy, but to witness history in 42” of HD glory made me a little more optimistic than usual.

Anyway, here’s to the hard work and better days ahead.

YES WE CAN!

Tattoos & Tapas

Saturday night I went out and got my 2nd tattoo. Pashe at One Shot Tattoo took my drawing and did an amazing job with the design. I’d wanted to get this one for years and I’m glad I finally did it. The design is of Lion Capital of Ashoka which is now the national emblem of India. Around 250 BCE, Emperor Ashoka had these lion capitals as markers of his rule (as well as displaying his laws) all over the Indian subcontinent. Anyway, Pashe did this for me in 2 hours. Check it out:

Afterwards, we raced over to the Mission District to meet some friends at Picaro Tapas Restaurant for some fantastic Spanish food. Couldn’t ask for a better Saturday night! I’ll post a photo of my tattoo after it heals. Stay tuned…