The most amazing and ambitious undertaking I’ve ever heard of in improvisational livetronica.
One winter, not so long ago, Stina took me on a mystery date to see the Broadway style stage adaption of “White Christmas”, which I enjoyed less then you’d imagine.
Last week I took Stina on a mystery date to exact revenge – I took her to see “Point Break Live“, a fairly low budget stage adaption of the Keanu Reeves extreme sports thriller. It turned out to be both hysterical and extremely clever. First off, someone from the audience gets to play the role of Keanu (Jonny Utah) for the entire performance. A lady holds up cue cards while giving ample direction, occasionally tackling Utah when the need arises. The other actors do fantastic, over the top renditions of the other main characters from the film. There’s unlikely use of minimal props and ample audience involvement.
Turned out to be good times – so poor on the revenge front.
I spread the “what I learned” post around the internet a little bit, and got some interesting feedback. Some people really resonated with my experience, and some people rejected it pretty strongly. I got some excellent advice along the way – like the idea of delaying the release of an album for a couple months to allow for a little emotional distance.
It also helped clarify that it is really important to me that other people listen to my music. That is not the case for everyone, though I imagine that is the case for the majority of musicians. I feel that there are a few people in this world that will really resonate with my music, and I want to maximize the potential for that discovery to occur.
A number of people listened to my music because of my blog post. I made a few new fans and got some feedback by complaining about promotion and the lack of feedback. The irony was not lost on me.
The ultimate validation came today in my inbox though. I received this email:
Subject: its travis from String Cheese
hey man you gave me cool abberations at some Zilla or eoto show recently. I often get home and give the cds i get given a listen. I listened to yours and kept listening …it was in permanent rotation in my car for months.
I got unlikely feedback from a musician whom I deeply respect. I’m riding pretty high today, and I’m on the cusp of finishing album #5.
After living life at half speed in Maui with Gail and Dan, we literally hit the ground running on our return to SF on Saturday night. I went straight from the plane to Cafe Du Nord to catch the later half of “Mayflowers 3” to bask in the glow of good friends and general fuzz collaborators – two which you’ll be introduced to on the upcoming release. Dave SG and Erin had been keeping our apartment company during our vacation, and were there on our return. They spent the next day hiking around Mt. Tam, and returned to our pad freshly engaged – so we duly made some serious merry. Thats something we excel in.
The next day brought the sad news that Betty “Grannie” Rudden, Cristina’s last surviving grandmother, had passed away after a bout of health issues. It sounded like she was ready to go and was finally at peace. We headed to DC on Wednesday (now +6 hours timezone from Maui) and attended the very touching memorial service with the entire Rudden family on Thursday. It was almost the entire clan that I had met one year previous for Grannie’s 90th, and though they were grieving her loss, they were able to celebrate her life. Although I only knew Grannie from two experiences: my wedding (when she was still up and partying at 12:30am california time) and her 90th birthday extravaganza, it was obvious to me that she was a remarkable woman. Her giant family is a both a testament and legacy.
It is a rare and special time for a family of that size to be together, and the love was almost palpable. Twelve children under the age of 9 also create a special kind of chaos that I’ve never experienced before. There were also four 9 week old shitzu’s whom I was rather obsessed with. Once again, I somehow gathered a lot of memories during our 48 hours with the Rudden clan.
My family is rather small and is spread all across the country. We are not so close and I see cousins very infrequently. I’ve only met folks from the Rudden clan once or twice before, but I already really feel part of their family, which is one of the greatest privileges I’ve ever known.