Trolling For Tinfoil
Monday, April 10, 2006
Where have I been?
I have been busy recording, for those of you who have been peeking in from time to time.
My time with the band is coming to a close, and I'm doing a solo project. I have enough of my own stuff to record a decent album, good enough musicians who owe me favors and an abundance of the nessesary Obessesive-Compulsive drive to make it sound like what I want, balanced with what I can afford.

As they get polished from the rough-as-a-cob sketch tracks to more polished versions, I will post a few.

The sketch tracks, to anyone who doesn't really know what they're for- Are gawd-awful recordings consisting of the melody, and one or two sparse instrumental tracks recorded in less that ideal surroundings. As a result, they sound like something you'd get from a cassette deck.
You play these back on a muti-thousand dollar studio control room system and they sound like fingernails on a chalkboard.
The good news is, you play them in front of other musicians who are used to it, and you watch as they listen and start to create their parts in their heads- The song starts to take on a life of it's own.

Fun stuff.

Sunday, February 26, 2006
I thought I'd let you in on what happens on the weekends. Some of it's good, some of it's annoying, but it is an assault on the senses most nights.

Here's me. No, I'm not being cool- I've retina scorching lights right in my eyes.

Crowd shot. She-who-must-not-be-named is dead center (blonde w/ arm raised) trying desperately to F*** w/ me.
She kept sending women over who "thought I was hot".. After a while, it got irritating.

It ain't all bad, though..

Now, you can't say you don't know what I look like.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006
Tagged By ~K
1. Black and White, or color? How do you prefer your movies?
Color. To be more specific, I like the old 50's technicolor movies that they used to show on TBS when I was a kid. I grew up in Florida, where July and August were brutally hot- So, there were times when you just sat inside and watched those movies they showed in the afternoon.

2. What is the one single subject that bores you to near-death?
That depends. Some days, I am so distracted, everything bores me. I guess to be more specific- If I am having one of those "bad" days (and they happen a lot less lately, but I still relapse into the past every now and then..) everything annoys me. But outright, watch-paint-dry boring? Physics class used to do that to me. We had a teacher that spoke in a dry monotone and had all the personality of- Well, an engineer. The only thing I remember from physics is that things fall at a rate of 32 ft per second, and light travels at 186000 miles per second. That's it. ZZZZzzzz.

3. MP3's, CD's, Cassettes, or Vinyl?
MP3's as of late. I am a geek, you know. Yeesh.

4. If you were handed a first class plane ticket to anywhere in the world and ten million dollars and told all of it could be yours- IF you leave and don't tell anyone where you are going- ever. This includes family, friends- everyone. Forever. Would you do it?
Nope. Too selfish.
My family would be in anguish, never knowing what happened to me, and would always imagine the worst. Just not worth it. Believe me, I think about just disappearing quite often these days,but I'd at least let my family know.

5. What do you consider the world's most pressing issue now?
I'm aware of the fact that that statement has some old "commie pinko lib'ruls" undertones, but the "religion of peace" seems to have declared active war on- Well.. Just about everyone. There seems to be no middle greound for them at the moment- At least for those making all the noise.

6. How would you rectify the world's most pressing issue?
Hmm. A simple, crude strategy would be to give them a continent. Let them have half of Jerusalem, all of Africa. May god or Allah help them if they do anything other than look across the border.
I know. It wouldn't work, but it's a thought. This is why I do not try to solve the world's problems.

7. You are given the chance to go back and change one thing in your life, what would it be?
There is one person whom I wish I had never laid eyes upon. Other than that- and even when I include She-who-must-not-be-named, I am the sum of my experiences, both good and bad.

8. You are given the chance to go back and change one event in world history, what would it be?
Nothing. Things happen, and situations arise from those events. Now- If I could go back and observe? Lincoln would have been fun to see in action, as would Churchill, or maybe R.E. Lee.

9. Opera, or Grand Ole' Opry?
Both. One can be as tedious as the other, so I'd like to bounce between them when the other gets boring.

10. What is the one great unsolved crime of all time you'd like to solve?
JFK's assasination.
The infamous grassy knoll, the storm drain, Miami, the mob.. A lot of people died in odd ways. People that were connected in one way or another, just.. Gone. That strikes me as- I dunno..Against the law of averages.

11. What famous author would you like to have over for dinner. What would you serve?
Kerouac? Nope. Too self-absorbed. Tolstoy? Nope. Too tedious. Nabokov? Mmmmaybe.
I think I'll go for John D. MacDonald. He was the best comentator of modern society I have yet to see. He's since passed away, but if he were here, we'd have-
Steak, (grilled of course..) garlic mashed potatoes and salad. Nothing special, but I'd at least make sure I had some quality gin on hand for him.

12. You discover that John Lennon was right, and there's no hell below us, and above us there is only sky. What's the first immoral thing you would do to celebrate this fact?
Nothing. It's not the threat of hell that keeps me from doing immoral things. Everything has a price, and most immoral things cost you more than the pleasure derived from it. Mostly, I think I'd marvel at the fact that Lennon was right about something other than chord structure and a clever turn of phrase. People take musicians far too seriously as it is.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006
K~ from Life With Me In It tagged me. I looked at it and thought-
That- is not. What I feel like answering today.
Not that I'm some sort of "Meme elitist", bent on doing everything my way, but I thought the questions were kinda.. Meh. (K~ is most definitely NOT "meh" and- I'm pretty sure she could take me in an alley fight.)

Here's what I wanna know. (Yes, it is all about me, and it's high time y'all learned that..)

Rob's cheesy, nosy questions

1) When you think of someone, what pushes your "wow" buttons? In other words, is there a "type" or "types" that you go for? Are you an "eyes" person, one who goes for the artistic type, or rough around the edges? (This is a gender-neutral question, I think.)

2) Name something about the people you work with that pushes your "That really pisses me off" button. (Okay, be careful, cuz you never know who may read this. If in doubt, substitute a "people in general" response.)

3) 4) and 5) If you could have three wishes what would they be? (Difficulty- No "world peace and puppies for everyone" wishes. Let's be realistic about our unrealism, shall we?)

6) SuperBowl- Did the Steelers win outright, or did the Seahawks just lose an otherwise winnable game? (Sougata gets a pass on this, being a godless heathen and a ferriner to boot..)

Rob's inane answers

1) I like women to be sassy, able to withstand the onslaught of my "Rob-Fu". Okay, that's a bit overboard, but I like them with a sense of self.
Oh- Hot always helps.
2) I have several types at work who yank my chain on a regular basis, but the worst is when people assign me a problem, and then give me a ten minute dissertaion on what to do to correct the issue.
Here's all I need- Who. What. Where. Anything else, and you're torturing me with noises not at all unlike those made by Charlie Brown's Mom. WahWahWaaahWah.
Just - Let. Me. Go. I can assess the situation, ask questions and solve it quicker on my own.

3) Wisdom the likes of Solomon. The ability to see every situation for what it really is.
4) The power to use said wisdom- Mostly for those directly around me. No world peace blather here.
5) To own and rule an island whose chief export would be those hot women they use in music videos.

6) The Seahawks lost that one. They let it slip away more so than the Steelers won.

Now- It's up to you if you want to post these in tour own blog, but truthfully, I'll be happy with some answers in the comments section.

Sunday, February 05, 2006
SuperBowls and Songwriting
I am of the opinion that there are only two times when Steeler's Fans are insufferable.

1) When they win.
2) When they lose.

The SuperBowl hasn't even started yet and I'm wincing already, anticipating a lot of breathless rehashing of the game, or worse yet- Endless whining about bad calls.

Just for the record though, this is probably the only time I will ever root for the Steelers, albeit half-assedly whilst I recline and snooze on the couch. In part, it's because I have a hard time getting worked up over the Seahawks. They're just so... Latte'.

I wouldn't rule out Holmgren and company altogether, but I think the Steelers have more heart, play with more intensity and have a defense that could've held off the Allies on D-Day.

The songwriting has come to a screeching halt, in part because of an abcessed tooth, making it hard to feel creative while my face is pounding. I get it drilled and filled on Wednesday, so here's hoping for the best. I also kinda poured out everything I had in me, writing one song that's as close to "me" as I dare get. It won't be hard for anyone to figure out who wrote it ten seconds into the song. It's also as good as anyhting I've ever written.

BTW.. My prediction for the Super bowl is Steelers over the Seahawks 31-27.

Thursday, February 02, 2006
Creativity, or lack thereof
Whelp.. The songwriting continues.

I had a really productive streak going strong, pumping out two so-so pieces, followed by two really solid ones, and then- I hit the wall.

It happens. The creative well runs dry, and you sit there staring at the wall mid-song.

I had a pretty nice little chord progression going, something akin to a melody brewing, but when it came time to put an idea or some kind of subject matter into it, everything came that came out of my head sounded like rejected Hallmark Cards from the 70’s. I don’t really like writing directly about meself, since- Well, that can make people squirm.

I don’t want them to squirm, I want them to absorb and enjoy the song, finding something of themselves in it. If it so happens that what I’m going through comes out in a song, fine, but I’m not going to dump my soul on the poor unsuspecting public.
That’s what I have this blog for. It’s reasonably anonymous, and I can vent my spleen upon you, the poor unsuspecting readers. Ha!

Sunday, January 29, 2006
The sunday update.
Just because I feel guilty, I suppose, for neglecting the Troll, I am throwing this up just to keep you apprised of my life, as boring as it is of late.

I've really been on a songwriting tear, in part because this process is so unobtrusive- You can hit a button and just let ideas roll out without regard to the recording going on. I normally get the "Red Light Jitters" which means you get self-conscious when the tape rolls. This makes it silent enough to forget about.

I've finished a couple, but it'll be a few weeks, maybe months before I get them to a point where I can link to them. They're just rough sketches, and they'll need to be polished, honed and perfected before I let them out.

I've been furously uprading the PC, installing bigger hard drives, since songs in rough format suck up vast anounts of drive space. This required drive imaging software, a big ol' Western Digital 250 gig Hard Drive and getting my finicky MoBo to recognize both PATA and SATA drives. My original drive is now in an external USB enclosure for backup and whatnot. That was a pain in the ass, lemme tell ya. When i got the new MoBo i lost a crapload of data, but it wasn't anything I couldn't live without, but I'll be damned if I'll do it twice. Last time I blew the drive away mostly because I ran out of patience.

The band is taking off, which is really frightening. As much as there's tension and whatnot (which has mostly subsided) the sound on stage is better than sex at times. I swear, it really is. It's both visceral and audible, feeding right into my "I Need to feel good" circuit in my brain and for a period of time, all is well in the world. The guitarist and I (yes, THAT guitarist..) are working on the original stuff- So, .. Um.. That has been oddly productive.

My life, if it weren't so boring, would be great screenplay fodder as a side, "isn't he odd" kind of character.
I have not really felt the need to date, or find someone to fill any voids in my life, which is both re-assuring, and odd. I do mental double-takes at times when I'm driving, taking stock of Rob- such as I am. I am usually content to just putter along, doing as I please, marching to the beat of whatever it is that I'm amusing myself with.

I've been on dates, but they are not so much an interview for a future Significant Other so much as entertainment. Provided they're attractive enough to be amusing. It sounds shallow, I know, but if I'm going to subjuct myself to a date, she damn well better be pleasing to look at. At the end of the night, kisses are exchanged, but then I scurry away to come home and play my guitar.

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