Wow! Has it really been so long since I last blogged?
Just checking the diary to see where I've been and what I've been up to.
I read a couple of books, two about Van Morrison. Greil Marcus's When That Rough God Does Riding has been fairly controversial amongst rabid Van-fans, but it seems pretty clear to me that Marcus is as big a fan as any of us, but is not afraid to tell how disappointed he's been in long stretches of Morrison's output over the years. I agree with him. While I think that weak Morrison is better than a lot of the other stuff that's out there, when measured against himself...Van has had some dry periods. Hymns to the Silence by Peter Mills should please everybody. It's a decent read as well.
Bought the new Roky Erickson (with Okkervil River) album (yep, vinyl) on Record Store Day. And while I was never a big fan of Roky in his heyday, it sounds like he may be back to stay. I found a used copy of The Best of Allan Sherman and really enjoyed listening to those classic tunes. He's still a funny guy!
We went to the DVD release concert for Steve Strongman's Live at the Barn. The show was great, the band rocked the Studio Theatre. And the DVD is not bad either.
I've been talking with Michael Wrycraft (the graphic artist responsible for so many great CD packages and posters for Northern Blues and Borealis). I hope to be able to announce that McMaster has A Man Called Wrycraft's archives pretty soon.
Recently that most Southern Californian of all songwriters Jackson Browne released a double CD with that most polyester of guitar players David Lindley. Love Is Strange is a beautiful recording of a concert in Spain. Lovely stuff.
Then we spent a week in Saint John, New Brunswick for a conference (CNIE) and series of meetings (OUETDA). A day for touring built in let us visit St. Stephen's (Ganong Chocolate Factory), St. Andrew's by the Sea (too early for whale watching) and St. Martin's (world famous chowder, mmmm). Oh, and a visit or two to one of Canada's classic independent record stores...Backstreet Records. Great little shop.
Right now I'm reading Stieg Larsson's third Lisbeth Salander/Mikael Blomkvist book, The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest. Sad to say...there won't be any more.