Thursday, May 30, 2013

At the end of her sixth grade year, and first year playing electric base in the Cal Young Beginning Band, Samantha decided she wanted to audition for Jazz Band. This band was primarily an 8th grade band, but she wanted to give it a shot. She worked with Chuck over the course of a couple weeks to learn the blues scales and songs she would need to know for the audition. It was a very exciting day when she made the band. Sadly her dad never got to see them play. 

Sam was the second string bass last year, and then this year, really got to flourish, take solos, improvise and work with the newer students in the band. Her teacher told her she was one of the best bassist he had worked with.

The CY Jazz band is pretty special – and the difference between them and the beginning band is remarkable. Sit through a middle school beginning band concert - particularly early in the school year -and you will know exactly what I mean.

Tonight was her final concert at school – although she will continue to play with her girl’s band (known, for now, as Blue Noise), there isn't an obvious band for her to audition for at Sheldon (grrrr - anti bass bias, I guess). Cal Young Band Director, Mr. Powell, handed out awards at the end of the night, including Musician of the Year. That would be my daughter. Her name will be on a perpetual plack in the CY band room and she took home a custom award. We were stunned.

I so wish her dad could have been there to see her receive this huge honor and to see her play now – it is way too much fun. And although we struggle to balance music, softball, school etc in this busy girl’s life, I’m so glad the music she shared with Chuck continues to play in her heart and in our home. He would have been beyond proud of her tonight, as am I. 

Cal Young Musician of the Year!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Beer and Baseball: How to get him to respond to your text message

I have a few male friends that aren't always as responsive as I would like them to be when I'm trying to make plans. Texting seems to be their preferred method of communication - because of the minimal effort required I suspect - but even then, I sometimes don't hear back as quickly as I'd like when I'm trying to make plans. I'm busy - so if I'm asking a question I want to know the answer as soon as possible so I can figure out my day/week whatever and move on. Recently I sent two texts that were INCREDIBLY effective at soliciting virtually immediate replies. I thought it worth sharing as a service to other women.

Example one:
Deb: "I can't go to the UO/OSU baseball game Sunday. Would you like my tickets?"
Deb's friend's text: "OH MY GOD YES!"

Example two:
Deb's text: "Beer?"
Deb's Friend Called in response(!): "DEBO! Good Times. 5:30"

Both of these garnered replies within 30 seconds from when my text was sent.

Thursday, May 02, 2013

hooray for Spotify


I realize I’m late to the party on this, but I have become completely addicted to Spotify. It’s incredible to be able to build play lists and listen to pretty much anything I want, anytime I want, anywhere I want. I believe it is far superior to iTunes because I don’t have to buy songs, and to Pandora – because I don’t have to play a Radio Station but can build lists of songs I pick. It feels like a total game changer. I’m enjoying collaborating on playlists with friends, sharing song suggestions with family and slowly building up my own collections of music based on my mood (“You Can Take the Girl out of the 80s…”, “Cheese Sauce”, "The only good music to come out of the 90s", “Mom, will you please stop Dancing”, “Songs I’d Like to Drink Beer To”). 

Spotify does have some quirks. It’s missing a few artists I’ve looked for (no Beatles, no Steve Miller Band, and the worst no AC/DC!). By default, Spotify over shares on Facebook – posting every song you listen to on your timeline. I turned off sharing early on when I figured that out, but then a very good friend/college roommate who I miss desperately since she now lives all the dang way across the country (“that’s where my work and husband are” - whatever) says watching what I listen to go by in her newsfeed makes her feel closer to me. Yea, that got me – sharing is back on. Now all my Facebook friends who haven’t yet figured out how to hide posts from a specific app (hopefully y'all dialed that in long ago during the Farmville craze), are stuck watching my schizophrenic musical stylings go by in my activity feed. 

I am glad, however, Spotify activity doesn’t share the whole story... cause if it did, it might read more like this:
  • Deborah is listening to Walk This Way by Aerosmith on Spotify REALLY LOUDLY while dancing around her bathroom in a towel and using her round brush as a microphone. 
  • Deborah is listening to She's Hot To Go on Spotify. Several years ago Chuck tried to talk her into walking down the aisle to this song, rather than Pachibel’s Canon and the traditional Bridal March. He lost this battle, along with the one for a dinner service that included peanuts and little smokies as well as registering for wedding gifts at Guitar Center. She did acquiesce, however and dance to She's No Lady (She’s my wife) at the reception. ("The preacher asked her.. she said 'I do.' The preacher asked me, she said 'Yes, he does too.'")
  • Deborah is listening to Up All Night on Spotify, since her 13 year old daughter stole her phone. It’s frightening how many 1D songs Deb can now sing along to. 
  • Deborah is listening to That's the Way I Like It by K.C. And the Sunshine Band on Spotify. There’s just no excuse for this.
  • Deborah is listening to Big Mess by Devo on Spotify. She’s old enough to remember playing the “Oh, no! it’s Devo” cassette on her Walkman. 
  • Deborah listened to I Believe (When I Fall In Love It Will Be Forever) and For Once In My Life on Spotify. And while from little before her time, believes that no one can write a love song like Old School Stevie. 
  • Deborah is listening to Whistle by Flo rida on Spotify. That’s like the 723rd time this month. And she knows it sounds dirty, but likes it anyway. Can’t get the lyrics out of her head and accidentally started singing them while driving to Portland with a colleague the last week:
Can you blow my whistle baby, whistle baby
Let me know
Girl I'm gonna show you how to do it
And we start real slow
You just put your lips together
And you come real close
Can you blow my whistle baby, whistle baby
Here we go