Wednesday in Santa Fe

The first rehearsal for the recording of the new album starts at 10:00 today. When the recording starts for real, sometime in the coming weeks, I’ll bring some of my studio gear to Jon’s studio, in order to be able to have all of the microphones and pre-amps and converters for 16 tracks of HD recording.

Hm, wouldn’t it be cool, no, let me rephrase that, wouldn’t it be interesting, if the recent attacks on Google, which were blamed on Chinese hackers, and possibly black-hat Chinese Government Hackers… were actually perpetrated by Tibetan Freedom Fighters, who happen to know their way around computers? Khampas with internet instead of long knives. My imagination runs away with me and I can see a basement somewhere in Dharamsala, New York or London, filled with a gaggle of computers, with prayer flags crisscrossing the room, and people chanting mantras while they are hitting the keyboards.

Evidence Weakens That China Did the Recent Cyberattacks
an article in The Register calling into question the one piece of hard evidence that has been put forward to pin the Google cyberattacks on China. It was claimed that a CRC algorithm found in the Aurora attack code was particular to Chinese-language developers. Now evidence emerges that this algorithm has been widely known for years and used in English-language books and websites. Wired has a post introducing the Pentagon’s recently initiated effort to identify the “digital DNA” of hackers and/or their tools; this program is part of a wide-ranging effort by the US government to find useful means of deterring cyberattacks. This latter NY Times article notes that Google may have found the best deterrence so far — the threat to withdraw its services from the Chinese market.
(Via Slashdot)

I am back from the rehearsal and listening to mp3s from the recordings. Jon named one of the new tracks Tabouli Western, he he. We working out arrangements for 11 new pieces. More rehearsing next week and then four days of recording the week after that. The plan is to finish recording by the end of February and work on finishing touches and mixing in March.

Tuesday Music

Here is another Lava track. Perfect train or driving music, perhaps. Would go well with a travel video…

I have always really enjoyed Eric Schermerhorn’s Wah-Wah playing on this one.

Download the 24/48 FLAC here.
The 320kbps mp3 can be downloaded here.

In case you are new to this site, and haven’t read my earlier posts on HD audio, here is a reminder:

Unless you are using an external DAC (((Digital-to-Analog-Converter))), your computer will play back the FLAC, but will dither and downsample to 16/44.1kHz. There are several free apps that play back FLAC (free lossless audio codec), e.g. Songbird, which is open source and available for Mac, Windows and Linux operating systems, and VLC. You can also use one of these free apps to convert the FLAC file to an .AIFF or .WAV file, which you can import into iTunes. Again, without an external DAC, iTunes will play back an HD AIFF file, but will automatically dither and downsample to 16/44.1. If you don’t know what I am talking about, just download the mp3, because you won’t be able to enjoy the quality of the FLAC, it will take up a lot more space on your harddrive and you won’t be able to listen to it on an iPod anyway.

Tuesday in Santa Fe

Ah, drip-coffee is going to be trendy now… see this:

Ristretto | Pour-Over Coffee Drips Into New York – T Magazine Blog –
As coffee-brewing techniques go, pour over is slow and mannered. It’s low tech. It has a funny name. And yet, pour over is an ongoing obsession within the coffee world. It’s been around for years, though interest has spiked in recent months. It could be because the coffee it makes is so clean, so round and fruity, that you can fully taste all those complex layers of flavor that are supposed to be lurking in the best single-origin and micro-lot beans.

Well, I got you covered!

From left to right: Chemex coffeemaker – they are offered in a variety of sizes. The website has this to say:

The Chemex® coffeemaker was invented by Peter J. Schlumbohm, Ph.D., in 1941. Schlumbohm was born in Kiel, Germany in 1896. He received his doctorate in Chemistry from the University of Berlin. After several trips to the United States, he settled in New York City in 1936. Over the years, he invented over 3,000 items for which he was granted patents. However, his coffeemaker and carafe kettles were his most long enduring inventions.

Beautiful, elegant and in the MoMA.

The filter is also from Chemex. It contains no glue, since it is simply folded, and the paper is unbleached.

Next to the coffeemaker is a drinking glass. It’s made by Duralex in France. They are tough glasses – more than half the time I drop one on the floor, it survives. They are used in many cafes, especially in France, naturally. Just do a search, you can always find them somewhere. I like drinking from a glass, because I can enoy the color of the coffee or tea. If I lived in a small apartment, I would simply not have any cups or bowls or wine-glasses at all, only a dozen of these glasses.

Next comes the best coffee grinder I have found. It’s made by Hario. It’s easy to fill, it’s easy to hold, the grinding mechanism is adjustable (((so you can also grind pepper or seasalt or other spices for you next dinner))), it’s easy to open, and the bottom-glass can be cleaned in the dishwasher. And at $44 it doesn’t break the bank. You do know that coffee beans should be ground and not slashed to bits by a blade, yes?

The last item is a bag of whole beans I bought at Ohori in Santa Fe.

This is the next broadcast tower for Tokyo. See this post from last November. The Tokyo Sky Tree will replace the Tokyo Tower and should be completed next year.

Now off to the studio to mix another track for you… I am feel a bit of Lava coming on…

Monday in Santa Fe

Saw the hand in a store in Manhattan last December and could not resist.

The key on top is a 8GB flash drive. I am thinking of releasing this year’s trio album in 24/88.2 HD-quality on a flashdrive in FLAC-format, because an HD album doesn’t fit on a CD, even in FLAC form…

HD FLAC will also be available to download from And of course the music will be available in mp3 form from the usual outlets as well, and we will have CDs.

Are you going to Singapore this year? You might check out this coffee house:

Papa Palheta coffee, Singapore
Singapore might be better known for its insatiable foodies and gastronomic offerings than its cups of joe, but local coffee roaster Papa Palheta is attempting to change all that. Located in the Newton area, away from the island’s café hubs, this speciality coffee boutique has gotten coffee-crazy Singaporeans talking with its selection of coffee beans all roasted and sold on-site.

Here is Papa Palheta’s website.

I ask you, is the Fahrenheit scale of temperature cute, or antiquated? Well, it’s possibly both. The real question is why people in the USA and Belize are still using Fahrenheit?

Check this out: the reference points that defined the scale were brine (((ice, water, and salt))), and the inventor’s wife’s armpit!! Celsius on the other hand simply uses the freezing point and boiling point of water, at sea level. No armpits necessary!

Fahrenheit – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
According to a journal article Fahrenheit wrote in 1724, he based his scale on three reference points of temperature. The zero point is determined by placing the thermometer in brine: he used a mixture of ice, water, and ammonium chloride, a salt. This is a frigorific mixture which automatically stabilizes its temperature at 0 °F. A mixture of water and ice stabilizes at 32 F. But Fahrenheit did not use this point in defining his temperature scale. The third point, 96 degrees, was the level of the liquid in the thermometer when held in the mouth or under the armpit of his wife. Fahrenheit noted that, using this scale, mercury boils at around 600 degrees.

Later, work by other scientists observed that water boils about 180 degrees higher than the freezing point and decided to redefine the degree slightly to make it exactly 180 degrees higher. It is for this reason that normal body temperature is 98.6 on the revised scale (whereas it was 96 on Fahrenheit’s original scale).

What I am wondering is this: obviously the entire scientific community as well as most of the industry in the USA use metric measurements… is the reason that Americans have never switched to a metric system and the Celsius scale, that the old measurements are somehow comforting in an age where everything seems to turn upside down? When everything is changing people hold on to the little things that remain the same?

Fahrenheit, so ähnlich wie Fahrvergnügen…


Most folks do not know how touring works. They wonder when we will come to their city or to a certain venue. Maybe this will help.

A promoter is the individual or entity, e.g. a Performing Arts Center or House of Blues, who puts on a concert. They engage an artist, rent a hall – unless the venue is the promoter – place advertisements in local papers and radio stations, set up interviews, hire a local crew to help us prepare the stage, provide catering and so on.

We don’t promote concerts. Local knowledge, connections and experience are extremely important.

Therefore we depend on local promoters to make us an offer, which usually works like this: the promoter contacts my agent. They agree on terms and discuss the timing with my manager, since routing is very important in order not to waste diesel and time.

When people ask me when will we play in this or that city I always encourage them to contact a venue they like and ask that venue, or the promoter, or festival to invite us. Our contact information can be found here.