Jan Garbarek Group – Dresden

A post from a friend who’s taste in music I really respect, Jason Lopez:

Jan Garbarek’s first live recording (recorded in 2007 in Dresden), after decades of incredible studio recordings and collaborations with numerous musicians from Brazil to Pakistan, is an important moment. Garbarek is telling a story, taking us from the delicate and serene, memory and longing, into fierce storms and forbidden territory, and back. The gentle melodies, and the squeaks and distortion are language from another dimension that, if you let yourself go, you somehow find yourself understanding.

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Il Trittico – Patricia Racette – Must see this opera (again)

Paul Padillo, who is far more qualified than me to write an opera review, just posted a review of Patricia Racette in Il Trittico.

I saw Il Trittico with Patricia Racette in San Francisco and was just blown away. Il Tabarro, the first act, was wonderful, but I wasn’t prepared for the emotional experience that was going to occur with Suor Angelica, the second act.

Patricia Racette is my new favorite in the world of opera. Suor Angelica is a wonderful story and was supposed to be Giacomo Puccini’s favorite. The production in San Francisco was incredible, but must be seen, as visually, there’s a twist…unique to this production. It’s a shame that the New York Met didn’t choose this one as part of it’s Opera Live in HD series (which are wonderful by the way). Patricia Racette is called upon not only as a soprano, but to fully deliver the ending, her acting needed to be flawless. Everything came together in a perfect storm that just blew me away emotionally.

Following the 2nd act of Suor Angelica is of course Gianni Schicchi as the 3rd act. This is a hysterical comedic farce which also demanded some significant acting to pull off. Gianni Schicchi is fast paced, and funny throughout, and features the beautiful aria O, Mio Babbino Caro…again, just an amazing performance.

After Il Trittico, I went home and jumped online hoping to buy better seats for the next performance, but was very disappointed to find out that I had just caught the last performance in San Francisco.

Fortunately, Patricia Racette performing Il Trittico in New York. I used to live in New York, and haven’t been back since 2001. Amazingly, I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to go to New York and catch her performance on December 12. I couldn’t be more excited. Christmas is early this year!

Oh, and speaking about the New York Metropolitan Opera Live in HD and Patricia Racette, I should also add that she was the host of the Live HD broadcast of Turandot, which I also thoroughly enjoyed. I’m really digging Puccini these days.

One last thought: If you like opera, italian food, wine, and incredible views, be sure to check out Opera Nights at Servino’s Ristorante. They take place once a month in Tiburon and are attended by a wonderful group of opera lovers in the Bay Area.


Apple & U2 breakup hurts Apple more than U2 – RIM wins this one

According to AppleInsider, “Restrictions drove U2 to switch sides from Apple to RIM“, Apple lost the sponsorship opportunity for U2 to RIM due to Apple not being willing to appease U2. I’m not that big of a fan of U2 (and forget the “but U2 sucks” comments), the fact is, U2 is HUGE. While artistically I think they ran out of substance a long time ago and are running high on gimmicks, they do get millions of people engaged in what they’re doing around the world.

From U2’s perspective, they want to be treated like the artistic Gods they think they are. They want *something*, anything that their status gives them exclusive access to, so they can seem cutting edge.

Apple, isn’t so accustomed to placating in this regard, and probably has the perspective that they’ve got all kinds of high priority partners to provide direct support and access to, such as Microsoft (Office for the iPhone), or Adobe (Flash).

Given the clash of corporate and brand protecting egotistical giants, I could see how there would be a conflict between U2 and Apple.

But this ultimately ends up hurting Apple.

U2 goes on and does something with RIM for the Blackberry, which will probably be something with less whiz-bang bells and whistles. However, Apple loses the promotional opportunity completely. Furthermore, Apple loses some of its edge as the media smartphone as opposed to just the smartphone. In other words, some people may see the Blackberry as just as hip, cool, and media savvy, but better for business use than the iPhone. The opposite of this of course would be Microsoft offering Office for the iPhone as an exclusive.

Of course all of this assumes that the article at AppleInsider is correct, and Apple lost U2 for reasons other than RIM simply just deciding this opportunity was worth pouring a boatload of cash into and simply outbidding Apple.

The bottom line though is that this is yet another example of how Apple needs to open up and play nicer with partners. Somehow though I can’t imagine Steve Jobs is spending his time off right now ripping up iU2 photos.

Related blogs:
Bono and Steve Jobs No Longer BFFs
Why is U2 endorsing the BlackBerry?

Written by in: Life,Technology | Tags: , , , , , ,

Boat Trips from 2008

Places I went in 2008 aboard the Sea Slut.


More great music at Servino’s in Tiburon – Paula Bradman, Jazz Vocalist

Paula Bradman is on of my favorite regular Jazz performers in San Francisco. It’s always a wonderful delight to find that she’s playing at a restaurant where you can make an evening of good food, drink and entertainment.

Paula Bradman plays at Servino’s Ristorante in Tiburon this Saturday, April 4 – 7:30pm to 10:30pm.

Full review of Paula Bradman’s Jazz CD is at

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