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02007-02-28 | Music, Recording, Santa Fe | 9 comments

Was able to play guitar for the first time since this happened. After practicing some scales I pulled out the Opium transcripts by Daniel Ward and studied Winding Road/La Primavera – from Leaning into the Night. It’s a great practice piece for two reasons:
– it strengthens the left hand – for most of the piece the left index has to hold all strings down (bar) while the other fingers move around
– there is a steady 6/8 pulse that has to be adhered to throughout – difficult to sound relaxed within the pulse (especially with the left index having to work hard)…
Might be nice to play this piece with the quartet this summer.

Jon, Barrett and I are forming a band, a group, an entity of some kind. We will perform as a trio and will record with a number of different guest-musicians. The first album will feature Rahim AlHaj – the recording we did a few months ago and which is turning out just fabulous – and Barrett had a number of ideas for the next one. I had exchanged a few emails with Bei Bei, but she apparently does not like my choice of a creative commons license and prefers regular copyright – there has to be some irony in that… I told her that I will play guitar for hire under a full copyright, but I will not collaborate with other musicians unless we use a Creative Commons license.

Barrett came over for dinner on Saturday and we ended up talking for hours. I suggested that we each pick four songs from our repertoire – Barrett’s solo albums, Jon’s Transit albums, and my catalog – and start getting together and playing as a trio. Eventually we will write music for this group, but this will get us started. The trio will be an entirely separate entity from my own quartet and I have no idea where it will lead. I think there are enough months in a year that I should be able to do both, my own group and this new trio. How? When? Where? I don’t know. In this group I am just be the guitar-player.

Called Uncle Al and told him about the new trio. Al was my product manager at Epic Records and also product-managed two of Barrett’s bands, The Screaming Trees and Tuatara. Al talked to me about Barrett and to Barrett about me for much of the nineties, but we didn’t actually meet until last Fall. It was nice to hear that Al is very excited about the new group.

This spring Barrett’s label Fast Horse Recordings will release the new Round Mountain album, which I think is great news. We are getting a real nice scene here in Santa Fe. By the way, Jon’s Transit group will perform tomorrow evening at GIG here in Santa Fe!


  1. Adam Solomon

    Wow, a lot going on in one post, eh? So pulling out the Opium book piqued my curiosity, I realized I’d never known the answer to this question: how much of their repetoire does a musician who’s composed a lot of music remember, even years after writing or last playing a piece? Would be very curious about that…..

    I think I’ve lost track of how many recordings you’ve done lately :) Starting with up close, I have a feeling we’ll get hit with a flood at some point. Oh, that’s exciting…the new trio sounds like a fantastic idea. Explore, broaden the horizons, trek on! Very excited for you.

    Santa Fe sounds happening! Enjoy.

  2. Carol

    That’s been a hard time for you, waiting for your finger to heal…Sounds like great times ahead though. …for you and all of us…

  3. Matt Callahan

    Rubbing hands together, grinning….. This is what I’ve been waiting to hear. I knew once I heard Barrett’s music there had to be a combination of the three of you. It should be nothing less than amazing.

  4. Victor

    Glad to hear the finger is no longer a-pealing! Winding Road/La Primavera is way high on my favorite list of your music… would love to hear it in concert! Also very much looking forward to hearing what comes from your new collaborations!

  5. Carol

    It is named so well. I feel like I’m winding up a mountain path.

  6. laurie

    how delightful…

    your enthusiasm is wonderful, so exciting for you and, as Carol says, for all of us and the greater world as well. I really look forward to hearing you play with Rahim, it’s a natural combination.

    It sounds like there is a lot of great eating, great conversations, and great music making going on in Santa Fe – i can only imagine how great that must be..

    happy to hear of a healthy finger so willing and ready to play… play on!

  7. dave

    Hmmm … the trio sounds like it may be the Cream of the 21st century. Very cool.

  8. Luz

    Ever thought of a Lollapalooza (Indie) fest? You, Jon, Stephen, Barrett & Rahim. Could even invite Robbie & his band as well! An all-day fest of music & festivity–I’m there! That’s my two cents but nonetheless looking forward to all the wonderful music in the coming months.

  9. Jackie

    Looking forward to all the new collaborations!

    Daniel Ward (I’m sure we are talking about the same one) is a wonderful musician as well. I’ve heard him play several times in the Albuquerque area.


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