The man I look up to in music.

28 02 2007

My hero. This is Vic Wooten, to my mind the best blues/funk/jazz/fusion/whatever electric bass player alive today. I’ve met him in real life, after a Bela Fleck concert in Somerville. He’s not a particularly tall man, quiet, small hands, but is magic on the bass.

The instrument he’s using is of the same configuration as my Fender J-Bass, but with far better pickups and body than mine (it’s actually a 1983 Fodera Monarch Deluxe), but really, he can sound this good on just about any joe blow four string bass. As Vic has been heard to say “The bass make no music… you do.”
And, in the process of writing this entry, I just found out I’m a mere 3 days older than him.





The Squee just keeps on comin…

27 02 2007

My love affair with my Sony MZ-RH1 Minidisc player / recorder just keeps rolling along. After a few bumps getting it set up and running, I’m quite happily listening to music off little handheld disks. The player is working great. Soon I’ll be able to test it as a recorder, as a recently ebayed microphone is on it’s way.

Tonight, though, I had my first ‘walkabout’ with the player, listening to it as I went on a hike. Once I had figured out it’s sort of odd ‘Group’ structure for music, I was able to set up my albums and playlists on the one disk I had filled (well, to 700meg) with MP3’s. All works just as it’s supposed to. I once again have a perfectly useable, long battery life, high sound quality portable MP3 player that has the added bonus of having removeable media, be able to do high end recording, AND is the half the size and weight of an ipod.

But that’s not what I’m here to tell you about.

While it’s true the new Hi-MD Minidiscs use a non-standard format for their filesystem, that doesn’t mean the new player doesn’t function well with others. In fact, I randomly plugged the unit into my Linux box, to see if I could see my music filesystem.

[19860885.124000] usb 4-6: new high speed USB device using ehci_hcd and address 6
[19860885.260000] usb 4-6: configuration #1 chosen from 1 choice
[19860885.456000] scsi2 : SCSI emulation for USB Mass Storage devices
[19860885.456000] usb-storage: device found at 6
[19860885.456000] usb-storage: waiting for device to settle before scanning
[19860890.456000] usb-storage: device scan complete
[19860890.460000]   Vendor: SONY      Model: Hi-MD WALKMAN     Rev: 1000
[19860890.460000]   Type:   Direct-Access                      ANSI SCSI revision: 00
[19860890.476000] SCSI device sdc: 494023 2048-byte hdwr sectors (1012 MB)
[19860890.476000] sdc: Write Protect is off
[19860890.476000] sdc: Mode Sense: 00 2a 44 00
[19860890.476000] sdc: assuming drive cache: write through
[19860890.492000] SCSI device sdc: 494023 2048-byte hdwr sectors (1012 MB)
[19860890.496000] sdc: Write Protect is off
[19860890.496000] sdc: Mode Sense: 00 2a 44 00
[19860890.496000] sdc: assuming drive cache: write through
[19860890.496000]  sdc: unknown partition table
[19860890.672000] sd 2:0:0:0: Attached scsi removable disk sdc
[19860890.672000] sd 2:0:0:0: Attached scsi generic sg2 type 0
[19860895.184000] FAT: utf8 is not a recommended IO charset for FAT filesystems,
filesystem will be case sensitive!

Well this certainly looks promising. And look! I have a new filesystem mounted!

dbs@yawl:~$ cd /media/usbdisk-1
dbs@yawl:/media/usbdisk-1$ df -k .
Filesystem           1K-blocks      Used Available Use% Mounted on
/dev/sdc                987904    665728    322176  68% /media/usbdisk-1
dbs@yawl:/media/usbdisk-1$ ls -l
total 32
-r-x------ 1 dbs dbs     0 2007-02-21 19:15 HI-MD.IND
drwx------ 2 dbs dbs 32768 2007-02-27 20:07 HMDHIFI

Alas, it’s not quite trivial to browse the music I’ve stored on the disk, as it appears Sony has their own way of clustering music. But, I’m okay with this. Sony has finally removed all the DRM insanity that has plagued the Minidiscs since their inception over a decade ago, and now the format is actually useful – in fact, it’s downright sexy.

Stay tuned for a more indepth review of the unit. I need to go play some more.

Update 2/28 9am – Fixed a little formatting problem with <pre>.





Off to a… spooky start.

24 02 2007

Well, today I received my spiffy Sony MZ-RH1 minidisc recorder and player. It’s a fantastic little machine, very sexy and elegant. It does, however, require the SonicStage software from Sony. I did the full installation, and went to run it, and got this dialog.
I haven’t rebooted yet, but I’m just getting that little shiver of “Oh, this can’t bode well.”
I’ll file further reports as events warrant. But for the moment, I need to reboot. I’ll be back after start the computer.
Update – It rebooted fine, and the Sony software came up as expected. 20 minutes later I have a gig of data on the MD player, all sourced as MP3’s, loaded onto a disc without a problem, and without corruption. Whee!





Ice on Prez Day

19 02 2007



P2200170

Originally uploaded by eidolon.

Zach and Pascal and I went for a walk out on Lake Cochituate (which, except for ‘fast current’ spots, was solid down to about 14 inches). We hiked out into the ‘main’ section of the lake, and I was struck by the wide-openness, blue sky, and crystal clear air.

It was VERY cold – current temp is showing about 19 degrees, but it was also breezy. Brr! But we were bundled up nice and warm against it.





Come to our Intro meeting!

17 02 2007

If you’ve ever even THOUGHT about living in Cohousing, now’s the time to come to our introductory meeting tomorrow (Sunday) at 1pm in Marlborough.
Mosaic Commons has received it’s building permit, and will be starting construction this fall. Even if you’re not ready to commit to Mosaic or not even sure about cohousing in general, come to our meeting and get the FULL PICTURE of what it’s all about.
As the saying goes… “All knowledge is worth having”. Learn about cohousing!





Thomas Dolby’s story…

16 02 2007

I like reading Thomas Dolby’s blog. He’s a decent writer, and just tells things as they are. It’s a great window into the day to day goings on in the music industry.
A recent post however had me all teary reading it. Thomas describes a moment in 1985 working with Stevie Wonder. I heartily recommend anyone who relishes those ‘moments’ when playing, to give it a read. It certainly made my morning.





FoxNews Spamming Continues

13 02 2007

As if we needed more evidence of the sleeziness of FoxNews, here’s a pretty concrete example.
About a year ago, I posted about foxnews spamming. I’ve continued to receive these posts fairly regularly, but decided to look a little deeper.
Today I got this posting – this is in the format I receive in email when someone posts to any of my blogs:

IP Address: 206.15.101.44
Name: qwdqws
Email Address: qwsdq@aaa.com
Comments:
dwsqw
<A HREF=”http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,251660,00.html”>Iraq to
Close Borders With Syria, Iran for 72 Hours in Security Crackdown</A>

Looks pretty similar. Hey, that IP address looks similar as well. I wonder….

dbs@yawl:~$ whois 206.15.101.0
OrgName: News Corporation
OrgID: NEWSC
Address: 1211 Avenue of the Americas
Address: 7th Floor
City: New York
StateProv: NY
PostalCode: 10036
Country: US
NetRange: 206.15.96.0 – 206.15.127.255
CIDR: 206.15.96.0/19
NetName: NAI-NET-BLOCK
NetHandle: NET-206-15-96-0-1
Parent: NET-206-0-0-0-0
NetType: Direct Assignment
NameServer: NS1-142.AKAM.NET
NameServer: NS1-15.AKAM.NET
NameServer: NS1-163.AKAM.NET
NameServer: NS1-218.AKAM.NET
NameServer: USC2.AKAM.NET
NameServer: USE2.AKAM.NET
NameServer: USW3.AKAM.NET
NameServer: USW5.AKAM.NET
Comment:
RegDate: 1997-01-24
Updated: 2006-01-19
OrgTechHandle: JJR10-ARIN
OrgTechName: Ripkey, Jason J
OrgTechPhone: +1-212-852-7000
OrgTechEmail: jripkey@newscorp.com
# ARIN WHOIS database, last updated 2007-02-12 19:10
# Enter ? for additional hints on searching ARIN’s WHOIS database.

Yes folks, not only is FoxNews blogspamming the world trying to get their google rankings up, but they’re doing it FROM THEIR OWN OFFICES. Remember these are the “Fair and Balanced” folks. Yet more evidence of the hypocrisy of that statement.
Fortunately, their whois record provides a direct phone number and a contact at Fox News.