john mayer, Music

Battle Studies

BATTLE STUDIES,
the title of John Mayer’s next album, takes a fresh, efficient approach to the recording process.  He’s writing, demo-ing and recording all at the same time.  Meanwhile he and his staff are turning a giant house into a giant studio:“A living, breathing, ever-evolving organic space that contains every part of the record making process.”

Realizing that it’s impossible to follow up on an album as flawless as Continuum, he’s decided to leave it be and is beginning something/creating a sound entirely new. More rock, and more of the Trio, which is really what I’m hoping for.  These are some other tidbits I’ve gathered about the album:

There may be songs called:

borrowing
stiched up
half of my heart
i think she knows
assassin

…something with kanye and taylor swift.

I think it’ll be fun and lively, and complex with intricate details, not as introspective and melodic as Continuum.  I gather that because he’s a better guitarist now, he’s got more experience playing with legendary drummer Steve Jordan, is allowing his influences of BB King, Coltrane, and SRV meld together into a sound that’s uniquely his own,  and he’s been having quite a bit of fun lately with Rob Dyrdek, Steve Jordan, and others, in LA while recording.

The only thing I’m worried about is how he may be distracted by mainstream music in an effort to stay at the top of the charts. Taylor Swift?  Really?

Even so, it’s probably a bit of an understatement to say that I eagerly await this album.  Concerning the album, I promise I’ll keep myself more composed than I did concerning the John Mayer concert last summer (if you know me, you know what I’m talking about.)

The album art will be beautiful and feminine, something like what I stole from JM himself:

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And while I’m doing a fanatical tribute, might I add some favorite pictures?  It’s been a while since I wrote a post on John Mayer:

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And none but (unfortunately) MYSELF have forgotten how I acted at last summer’s concert:

Erika's 3-part JM concert sequence #1

Erika's 3-part JM concert sequence #1

#2

#2

...then he came on stage...

...then he came on stage...

...and #3 (clearly, this was my picture of the year.)

...and #3 (clearly, this was my picture of 2008)

But this one is a close second.

This one, taken earlier that day, is a close second--only because i was joking. I call it, "Finding Nemo, Finding Erika"

I hate the above picture! It appears to be a candid shot when in fact it isn’t… and I actually look like I’m enjoying myself!  Kids, this is what alcohol does to you.  You stuff clown fish in your cleavage when no one is looking.  I only put it on here for the entertainment of my readers.  The worst part is?  I kissed a carni on the cheek for that Nemo!  Hate to break it to you, carnival games are as rigged as Iranian elections.  The bigger the stuffed animal the greater the “deed”.  Presidency is the biggest ‘stuffed animal’ of them all…  You don’t get it by kissing anyone on the cheek. That’s why I know Ahmadinejad is a huge cock sucker, and you can tell him I said that.  (Sorry for the profanity Grandma.)

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Twenty!

Summer is for Day Parties

407364806_1411751266_0407365201_1411752649_0407365654_1411754251_0….and also for night parties.  And swimming.   And dehydration ensues.  But really, despite my constant thirst, summer is loving me an I’m loving it.  I’m really boring right now because I’m tired and  impatient for sleep… its been a long time since I’ve written a good post.  I will try to improve on that, but I don’t write about monotony or romance anymore so material is scarce right now.  I miss lots of people right now.  Grandma, I  miss you!  Will call you soon.

Summer schools is fabulous.  Keeps me in line.

Tonight I remembered the story of when I jumped off the sea-wall into the ocean at Angel Island because my toy fell into the water.  An older man, a stranger, scooped me up out of the water somehow and sat me down on a bench.  He was furious at me for scaring him, but I didn’t see the danger in the situation I just remember being scared because he was scared/angry and I felt cold and I missed my toy.  The whole deal was so traumatic I vowed I would never go back to Angel Island.  I felt like I was 10 at the time, so I must had been like 6.  My shirt was purple and Ashley made fun of me for wearing purple that day.  The end.

Molly came to visit me this weekend, it was SOOO MUCH FUN!  We laughed and laughed, it was like old times… but new times, so better.  We’re nostalgic and modern at the same time.  I said that in a drunken “tweet” the other night and I found a lot of truth in it. Anyway, Molly is doing great.  I love her so much.  Can’t wait for her 21st=WIIILD!

So tired,  sleep, same same…. xoxo

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Flowers, Smiles, Graduations

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The happy graduate

The happy graduate

Happy graduation dinner

Happy graduation dinner

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SO exhausted from this weekend, I can’t think of anything to write about. I haven’t felt this tired in a long time.  Watching young Christian Bale in The Newsies.  He’s tres adorable.  Saw The Hangover last night.  I laughed so hard… it was really funny.  Unique characters and realistic humor…  The kind of genuine humor that you can sense.  Not that I would recommend the movie to my Grandmother, but for someone with a dirty sense of humor looking for a good laugh.  I’ll write more later.  So sorry.  Hope everyone had a great weekend!

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Blonde WAHHHT

 

My really blonde hair: woah is right!  I like it though.

 

Photo 133

 

Baldry's house! (for sale)

Baldry's house! (for sale)

 

Bryanne's birthday breakfast w. Baldry girls
Bryanne’s birthday breakfast w. Baldry girls

 

Drinks with my cousin. 

Above, drinks with my cousin.  He’s visiting from New York, it’s great to see him!

 

More pics to come. I feel lonely right now but I’m going to bed, like a symptom it’ll be gone in the morning.

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Twenty!

Angels

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Trinidad, perched on the cliff above a small harbor that carries far more history than it attests to, is a community that is truly based on love.  At first, the casual tourist is greeted with the warmth that a metaphor of a sweater might offer a writer. A sweater is a metaphor that the tourist might need literally on an average morning in the coastal fog.  In Trinidad, one feels a tight-knit, soft, comforting quality in the small town, but not overbearing sweetness or abrasive generosity (though generous they are)  These are qualities that might be more akin to an itchy wool yarn.  We are sustainable bamboo knit.   And if a sweater, let Trinidad be a sage green.  The color combines the sea and the forest, captures down-to-earth values and sage green is a modest color.  The town is humble, and everyone knows that all good things came from humble beginnings.  For such a small town, they are more supportive per square inch than any city I’ve ever seen.  Where do I begin to elaborate?  There are countless networks, established or not, that take care of everyone in some way shape or form.  For instance, should something happen to my Grandma, her small church group would surely notice.  But if not, the small art center would surely notice, for they all speak to or about one another every day.  If, for some reason, they didn’t, Sierra would discover whatever was the matter with my Grandma and then, wouldn’t you know it, the whole town would be alerted.  There is an “angel network” that give elders and others in need a supportive phone tree to call if they need a ride, groceries…you can pretty much name it.  They hold countless fundraisers for the small local K-8 school, and all do at least fairly well (lest they don’t include evening entertainment of some kind, they might suffer)  A small group of women dress in black every Friday and protest the Iraq war, these “Women In Black” have been doing it since 2001.  The only cafe in town, Beachcombers, doesn’t use ANY paper cups/plates/cutlery.  If you need a mug, you can buy one, or you can borrow theirs, take it with you and bring it back when you get a chance.  Keep in mind, the town population is around 400.  Ahh… so endearing, yet so REAL.  I could go on, but I’m sitting outside the Beachcomber right now and my toes are cold, because it’s eleven thirty at night.

This is further proof that I am having a steamy affair with the internet.  My Grandma found out about us, too. Dont worry…. he’s good to me, but when I need him, I gotta have him.

Tonight is my last night.  The trip needed to be longer, but doesn’t it always.  This is just my brief goodbye post, I’ll include more info when I post my pictures.

SophieScholl

In the mean time, the story of Sophie Scholl has had a profound and, what I sense to be, lasting effect on me.  I read about her in Cultural Amnesia (an amazing book that I recommend to anyone interested in the history of western culture… am I as snobby as I sound??  The answer is NO.)  I’ll write a more conclusive, complete story of her life and death in my next post, but if you’d like to brief yourself, read here.  It’s bare bones but it’s something.  More need to know about such an angel among men.

My toes are frozen, but it’s a beautiful clear night, i can hear the ocean and smell the salt and i can hear the waves gently rocking the bell in the bay.  So eerie.  & I just saw a fox!  time to go. xoxoxoxox

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Opium Poppies and Rapunzle Reversal

The Shoemaker Brothers

The Shoemaker Brothers

Oliver Twist

Oliver Twist

Sierra, the cute girl kneeling in the white, wearing a blond wig, lives around the corner from my Grandma and is a frequent visitor.  This is Sierra below pretending to be my Grandma (wearing her glasses.)  She’s really fun to hang out with, really observant and, for lack of a better term, she’s just cool.  I rarely describe anything as being “cool”.403404119_1397462166_0

Sierra’s hair color inspired the color for the print I carved.  Still a work in progress, I’ll post pictures of the finished piece.

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My Grandma and I went to Farmers Market yesterday and found the biggest poppies we’ve ever seen.  Although they didn’t last but half the day, my Grandma looked adorable walking though the market with them…

403403810_1397461116_0403403907_1397461450_0403403995_1397461738_0403403701_1397460736_0The above picture is taken from, Kathrin, my Grandma’s good friend, porch.  Kathrin and her husband Mike have a beautiful home with intricate gardens and lively animals.  She introduced me to Pernod, a tasty licorice aperitif, and cooked a delicious Italian dinner. They have 2 strikingly good looking parrots that whistle and can, apparently, almost hold an intelligent conversation but they were reserved around us (sort of like how I was when I met Gandalf the Great’s nephew earlier that evening.)

Before we went to Kathrin’s, my Grandma and I made an appearance at her friends birthday party.  It was a themed birthday party complete with fruit punch, bluegrass music and, my favorite classic stud: the man with the long pony tail wearing the long, black velvet gown.  If only I’d been dressed as a whirling dervish, he might have instigated some flirtatious conversation.  We could have spoken elvish to one another.  I at least wanted him to let his hair down. Rapunzle reversed?……. oh wow that’s really disturbing, I’ve taken my joke entirely too far.  Ahh, I’m cracking up…  I think whirling dervishes can only be men, anyway.  In reality, I avoided his gaze to such an extent that I felt awkward.

Last picture is of Eva:

"DUCK???!!!!"

"DUCK???!!!!"

XOXOXOXOXO

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Twenty!

The Kind-Hearted Alley Way

It’s a cold and beautiful night in Trinidad.  Right now I’m reclined across the front seat of the camper I’m sleeping in that’s parked in the kind-hearted alley way behind my grandma’s cottage.  The water pump keeps readjusting itself and shattering the silence, scaring the wits out of me.  I’m jumpy tonight, probably because when I took the dog  on a walk a few moments ago he tried to take off toward something in the bushes and it made my mind go off on a “what lurks in the shadows” tangent.  Generally though, I’m finally starting to feel relaxed.  It usually takes me a few days to begin to unwind, and my grandma has been encouraging the process with art supplies, amazing meals and desserts (the desserts of which she claims will each take 30 seconds off of my mile time. )  Since I’ve been here I’ve hardly done anything to help my physical appearance but shower…  mascara if we’re going out. It’s so nice not to get done-up every day.

I went on a walk down to the beach earlier and since I don’t have a care in the world right now, I let my mind think about what ever it felt like.  My walk crested a steep ravine covered in wildflowers and blackberries and it reminded me of a very similar ravine that my Grandma used to live above.  My sisters and I would harness retractable dog leashes to the beams under my Grandmas porch, clip them to our belt loops and rappel down the ravine into the bushes and bramble.  I remember one eventful afternoon, my belt loop gave and sent me tumbling all the way down the steep hillside.  It was so dramatic.  Ashley, wearing her green fleece and her Teva’s, her pretty forehead exposed by a low ponytail, yelled, “ERIKA!!!!” and desperately outstretched her arm as she watched me tumble to my fate.  She quickly unharnessed and shuffled through the loose soil down down to me.  Her highly specialized water shoes were not made for such endeavors and the Velcro was never quite the same after that rescue mission.  As it turned out, I was fine.  A little shaken, a little scratched from the blackberries, but mostly upset that I was down a belt loop.

I have no Internet right now, and since I don’t have a decent word processor I’m writing this post on a giant virtual post-it.  The only book I brought here is Cultural Amnesia, which is a slow, heavy read… and the only movie I have on my computer is One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest.  I can be so morose without even meaning to!

Before I forget… A few posts back I mentioned some things about Martha Stewart’s blog, joked about the buy-in rate for high society San Francisco and uttered the word “moderate”?  If you don’t remember, that’s best.  And if you do, I’m retracting those statements after some consideration.  I had just seen a very haute episode of Gossip Girl and felt emotionally compelled toward a more conservative, high society lifestyle.  But simply because I’d love to sail a yacht in the San Francisco bay doesn’t mean I have to pigeon-hole myself.  I am still a democrat, make no mistake.

Anyway, I’m having a great time up here making art, running in the redwoods, laughing with my Grandma…  There is nothing like coastal mist and foggy forests to settle the soul.

Right as I typed that calming line, the water pump went off and got my blood racing again.

I’m sleeping with John Mayer tonight as an homage to the fact that the Trio is on the Tonight Show and I can’t watch it.  THE TRIO.  I just let out a big, big sigh…  The Trio…. The Trio… I won’t ever get past the song Out Of My Mind on Where The Light Is.  It BLOWS MY MIND, every time.  That song, and Gravity.  Listening to it right now….. the live versions of these songs make me feel like I’m in love (that is, until they end.)  The instrumental build-up in Out Of My Mind is how good love should be.

Hoping the water pump doesn’t down shift again,

Erika

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