Friday, November 23, 2007

November Update

Hi Everyone,

This month has been a busy one for me.

A friend of mine is getting married this weekend and I designed the place cards for her reception. It took me about three days to make 100 place cards and that includes me writing each name in calligraphy. It was a lot of work but I enjoyed doing it for her as its such a personal touch.

I'm deep into National Novel Writing Month right now. I'm six-thousand words away from 50,000 words and I have a zillion sub-plots I need to tie up but I'm not worried. To all my fellow NaNoWriMo writers out there, keep chugging away we've got one week left!

While my attention has been diverted elsewhere I did manage to read up on Dave Mustaine coming out with his own brand of coffee. All I could think of was the band KISS. For those of you unaware, KISS put their name on just about EVERYTHING! Believe it or not you can actually get a KISS casket. Anyway, I thought it was funny and yet cool for Dave Mustaine to come out with a brand of coffee. The proceeds go to charity and the coffee itself is free trade so it benefits the farmers who harvest the beans. Which I think is a really good thing. Now before one of you asks me, no I will not be purchasing Dave's coffee as I don't drink coffee. I can think of a couple of friends who drink coffee but they have no idea about Megadeth. Then again they make me listen to music that I would use as coasters on my coffee table. (I kid.)

Speaking of music, I haven't been drowning myself in it like I normally do. Yes, I did pick up the greatest hits of Bing Crosby and a Motorhead compliation recently but that's about it. Quite honestly I wish you all had been with me when I bought the CD's because I also happened to have the latest issue of Metal Hammer in my hand as well. The look on the clerks face was priceless. Which reminds me of a time when I was in my twenties and buying music a lot more than I am now. Anyway to make a long story short, the clerk actually asked me if one of the CD's in my pile was a mistake. The pile of CD's contained the following artisits: Harry Connick Jr., Reba McEntire, Shania Twain and Metallica. I kid you not. Part of me gets a good laugh out of watching store clerk's look at my choice of music. Keeps them guessing.

Over the past week I discovered a website that connects me to streaming live radio stations around the world so I've been bouncing back and forth between a metal station in Finland, a classical/pop station in The Netherlands and an all news channel out of Ireland. While that has been keeping me occupied I did manage to go back to my account at Pandora and played around with it. I was able to listen to some new music there and saved a rather long list of bands I want to delve into further. From Pandora I went back to CD Baby where you can find a lot of independent music or artists who distribute music themselves as they're not on a major label. That's how I picked up CD's by Clock and PJ Smith. I managed to find some really cool sounding Finnish, Norwegian and Swedish prog/metal bands plus a rare find - a Chris Poland CD. (For those of you not up on your history of Megadeth, Chris Poland was part of the original line-up.)
I was bad and bought six CD's. I admit it, I'm a whore when it comes to music especially when I tell you I went to Amazon.com and purchased some more.

Don't worry folks I will share my shopping list with all of you at some point.

Anyway, I best be going. Hope all of you had a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Take care!
-Maynard

Saturday, November 3, 2007

I'm International

Hi Everyone,

I hope all of you are doing well. October Rain is currently spinning around the world. I just recently found my book listed on websites in Canada, Italy, United Kingdom and Norway! I don't know how to read Norwegian but I was able to navigate around the website pretty well. I thought it was pretty cool to see my book being sold in Norway! Norwegian isn't one of the languages I wanted to learn but who knows maybe I should give it a shot!

I used to read and speak Spanish fairly well but I can’t anymore. I suppose if I took a class or listening to those language tapes it might come back. I’d really like to learn Irish or Gaelic. I’ve been at some websites that have word pronunciations. I really enjoy listening to the words. I suppose learning Gaelic or Irish might help me understand the Celtic music CD’s I have. The music is beautiful but I haven’t a clue what they’re singing about.

Speaking of music if one were to venture to my list page, you’ll notice that I listen to an interesting selection of music. Honestly, you’re only seeing a segment of it. I’m listening to music all the time. It’s a constant in my life. I do listening to Celtic music, some classical, classic rock, prog, hard rock, glam, thrash, symphonic/power metal, country, pop, rock. I think it throws people off to know that I listen to thrash. Honestly, I don’t listen to a lot of it right now I’m rediscovering the bands I grew up with at the moment. Some of them don’t exist anymore but I’m glad Megadeth is still kicking around.

I like some of the music I’ve been hearing coming out of Finland and the Netherlands. I’m trying to find some other hard rock/prog/metal bands from that area of the world. I think it’s because there is an appreciation for classical music and then adding those elements into what we know as heavy metal and all of its various genres. There is a definite music appreciation distinction between Europe and the United States. Sometimes I wish I lived in Europe just because the music seems to be better there.

I’m not a fan of Death Metal. I’ve tried to listen to it and some of the music is great but then the lead singer chimes in and ruins it by growling, screeching or screaming. It’s a major musical turn off for me. I didn’t like Death Metal when I was younger either. As I say, the music is good but only if they gag the lead singer! To each his own it’s just not for me.

If any of you have artists that I should give a listen to let me know. My ears are always seeking out new tunes.


-Maynard