Studio Apartments

December 10, 2006 | Filed Under friends, music, projects, video / film | 2 Comments 

In 2002 at SCAD I made a short documentary as a final project for my advanced editing class. It’s called “Studio Apartments,” and it follows three musicians as they explore writing and recording music at home. The three musicians were, of course, friends and roommates of mine, but regardless of that bias, I still think it’s a pretty decent video piece, and the music is good.Almost all of my friends in Savannah were artists and/or musicians, and we were all playing around with writing and recording music with a different approach. At the same time, we were constantly bouncing our ideas off of each other. So when I decided to make a documentary, it was a logical step to focus on friends of mine who were also friends amongst themselves. The piece consists of separate interviews and recording footage, so you don’t necessarily know that they know one another, but it’s evident in other ways.One reason that this is still interesting to me in the first place is that it’s an early look at where these guys were coming from. They’ve all gone on to do some really great stuff, and are actively continuing to do really great stuff, so it’s interesting to see what they were like when they were just starting to figure out what direction they would go in.Everyone influenced everyone, and there was (and still is) a lot of overlap; during the production of this documentary, Paul Duncan was beginning to record his first album, To an Ambient Hollywood. He lived two doors down from me and Mickey Ladd, so we (and Joe) were all in on early critiques. After graduation, Paul and I were roommates in Atlanta, where he finished the first album and started work on his second. Home-Tapes, an indie label started by two other friends of ours, debuted with that record, and has gone on to become a really awesome, highly respected, successful endeavor; this year they had a showcase stage at the CMJ fest.Meanwhile, Joe Stickney had moved to Brooklyn and was playing with several bands. My documentary focuses on his electronic music, but Joe is also THE bad-ass drummer. Joe currently plays with Bear in Heaven and just finished a tour with Rhys Chatham as the drummer for Rhys Chatham’s Essentialist. After Atlanta, Paul joined Joe in New York, so nowadays Joe also drums in Paul’s live band and contributed a lot to his second and third albums.Since then, Mickey Ladd has kept it pretty low-key on the music tip, but he’s still writing and recording little eagles of songs. He sends me mp3s from time to time, and it’s really just a matter of time before his stuff will be in your ear, too.Anyway, for those of you that already know these guys, personally or not, I thought you might get a kick out of seeing what they were doing a few years ago. I emailed Paul a clip and he said it was embarassing, but I beg to differ. Sure, they weren’t as far along or musically developed as they are now, but this is historical stuff. I’m preserving it for posterity. Hopefully Paul won’t mind too much.If you’ve never heard of these folks before, check ‘em out. Go to Home-Tapes and buy Paul’s stuff. It is VERY GOOD. While you’re there, buy some other stuff. Everything Home-Tapes has put out so far has been incredible. They have finely-tuned tastes.Go to Paul’s, Bear in Heaven’s and Rhys Chatham’s Essentialists myspace pages. Have a listen. I don’t know if the latter dudes have anything for sale yet, but keep checking.Mickey,(1, 2), doesn’t have any records out yet, either, but I’ll let you know as soon as he without further whatever, here’s the documentary, (in 3 parts thanks to You Tube’s file size limit.) Hope you enjoy; let me know what you think.

/// one




Backpack Shenanigans

December 7, 2006 | Filed Under god bless the internet, good lord | 1 Comment 

This is a pretty funny example of the hypocrisy of the religious right - and also the influence they have on less-informed people who are totally oblivious to the fact that they are being manipulated into being hypocrites.Evidently, the hilariouisly named Liberty Counsel, (a religious-right legal group (scary) affiliated with Jerry Falwell), sued Albemarie County in Virginia for discrimination for not letting some students at Hollymead Elementary School distribute flyers inviting everyone to Vacation Bible School. The lawsuit, believe it or not, actually persuaded the school to change its policy, and the kids were allowed to send the flyers home in every student’s backpack. Alright! Great!But, wouldn’t you know it, those pesky Pagans wouldn’t leave well-enough alone. A Charlottesville Unitarian-Universalist Church sent its own flyer home with the students:

“Have you ever wondered what ‘Holidays’ refers to?” reads the flier. “Everyone knows about Christmas – but what else are people celebrating in December? Why do we celebrate the way we do?” The flier invites people to “an educational program for children of all ages (and their adults), where we’ll explore the traditions of December and their origins, followed by a Pagan ritual to celebrate Yule.”It concludes, “Come for one or both parts and bring your curiosity.”

Pretty awesome. Now, of course, a bunch of parents, Christian bloggers, and religious leaders are all pissed off because another group is trying to exercise the “freedom” that they only really want for themselves. I especially appreciated this quote, from a Christian blogger/parent who noticed a disclaimer on the Pagan flyer:

“They [the school officials] aren’t endorsing or sponsoring this? Then it shouldn’t have been included in the Friday folders. The Friday folders have never been used for any thing other than school work and school board and/or County sanctioned/sponsored programs.” She then fumed that a “pagan ritual” is “an educational experience my children don’t need.”

Here’s the article.

Take it to the Limit

December 1, 2006 | Filed Under funny haha, god bless the internet, mysterious, time travel | 2 Comments