It's that time again, another year gone by. Send off your rockets and celebrate the fact that time is catching up on you. Should it dawn on you, and should you feel the icy hand of your old friend desperation, resting on your weary shoulder, do not panic, for after all, although you may feel that all you have been doing this year is racing around in circles, you share this destiny with the rest of the planet Earth, and so everything happens according to a well conceived galactic plan.
Me, I'm not sure I'm following a plan and if I do I like to believe I'm happy to not know it. Peter Pan did not want to grow up and so far I'm happy doing the ad libs, improvising instead of playing out the same theme year after year. In the wake of the much spoken of financial crisis that seems to be perpetually waiting just round the corner, everybody is worried about not knowing what next year will be like. Me, I can't think of anything worse than knowing exactly what next year would be like, but I bet it's gonna rain.
I could go on and on and on, but right now I have a headache. Yes, that means I'm not going to have sex with you tonight. Go and shoot off your rocket elsewhere. Happy new year.
It is six AM in the morning and I just returned from Danish Synth Festival in Copenhagen, the first of its kind, starting out small, featuring just four acts. Opening the concert with an impro based on the intro from Pink Floyd's Shine On You Crazy Diamond along with my old friend and guitarist Henrik Hansen felt good and very right after the recent death of Rick Wright, synth player with the Floyd. When we were kids, Henrik and I would play that song together quite often, always the long instrumental bit at the start which I still think is one of the highlights of Pink Floyd's career.
Driving home through the night after the concert was quite a ride too. There was a storm, literally shaking the carcass of the car as we passed the bridge from Sealand to Funen, bringing up interesting conversational topics such as whether to stay in your car and wait for help or try and escape and swim your way to the surface in case of an accident. In the end nothing dramatic happened and we made it safe home. However, if you happen to believe in the theory of the multiverse I might be somewhere on the bottom of an ocean right now, trapped within a car, desperately trying to make a call from my cellphone. Would I call you?
I went to Paris earlier this summer to attend a meeting with Jean Michel Jarre and a couple of friends to talk about a relaunch of his website. It was an interesting meeting in many ways because, not surprisingly, the discussion touched on aspects of the current state of the music industry, an industry which we've all grown up with, something in between fantasy and big money, an American invention, of course, like Disneyland. What I also found interesting is the fact that in many ways the internet is not as much Jean Michel's generation as it is mine and that made for some entertaining discussions on net-behaviour, cyber-psychology and user-friendly design. After a while Jean Michel leaned back in his seat and concluded he really didn't care if we lost visitors; he had an idea and that was what he wanted to do. In a time when everybody is busy trying to be famous on MySpace, suffering badly from the celebrity plague that seems to be the new AIDS, it was nice to talk to someone who is actually world famous but only cared about his idea.
The following day I stumbled upon a big cemetary where it turned out Berlioz and Dumas were buried, so I went to say hello before getting on the coach back to Denmark to find my computer heading for the cemetary too, or wherever computers go when they die. Good news is the harddisks survived, so I lost no valuable musical data, however, I did have to reinstall loads of programs, mainly music plugins. The machine is now almost back to fully operational, and it better be too since I have a concert coming up at August 22. I sometimes think this would have been an easier life had I been a folk guitarist, but then I listen to some wild fingerpicking John Renbourn song and think maybe not.
Attended the Einstürzende Neubauten concert in Copenhagen April 30 which turned out to be a quite hot affair, a sold out show and people standing close. Leaving for Club Faust after the concert turned out a crowded affair too since there was a zombie crawl going on - loads of mostly drunken teenagers in zombie outfit, roaming from bar to bar all night, basically.
Funny thing is I'd spoken to N. U. Unruh of Einstürzende Neubauten before their show and told him about the afterparty at Faust, suggesting he should go there. So when he and keyboarder Ash Wednesday showed up at Faust somewhere around midnight they were faced with a dark club crowded with zombies everywhere, many of them too drunk to actually stay on their feet. I tried to convince Unruh and Wednesday this was simply their fanbase in Denmark and that every time they did a concert here this thing was going on.
We had a good time at Faust, though, it's always a nice place to visit, and we ended up staying there all night. I felt really tired when finally leaving. I do remember it was raining, though.
Gary Gygax, founding father of Dungeons & Dragons, failed his final saving throw and died at the age of 69. Like so many kids of my generation I grew up on Tolkien and was amazed by the magic of Gygax' initial idea; to take your imagination on a trip through fantasy-land, armed only with pen, paper, and a vast array of funny dice looking like something in between occult artefacts and math class. Although I don't find much time for roleplaying these days, and when I do I play entirely without rules - hey, an anarchist at heart - I still salute Mr. Gygax. And I still feel happy when new generations of kids go down into the dungeons to let their imagination feed on a healthy diet of orcs, traps, and treasure.
A minute of silence for the Dungeon Master? Nay. Nerds everywhere get your fireball spells ready and give the man the kind of Gandalf fireworks he deserves. And from me and the elves, warriors, and wizards I used to embody when I was still a teen with glasses, a humble thank you.
Copyright: Ras Bolding 2008Back