Tag Archives: help

“EVERY NICKEL HELPS A LOT”

If you’ve been reading the dolorous saga of the Red Knapsack, you know that I have come to a decision.

Against the advice of my invisible accountant and my nonexistent financial staff, I have ordered another (identical) camera, batteries, tripod . . . the minimum.

Frankly, I have become so attached to the idea of video-recording the best music for JAZZ LIVES and for posterity that if I thought I couldn’t do it, I would be seriously depressed.

More than a dozen of my pals have suggested that I should start a Kickstarter program to raise money; I should solicit contributions.  “If there’s anything I can do, please let me know,” a number of dear people have written.

I am so uncomfortable asking people for money that it is nearly a phobia.  It may be that I am truly aware that I am a member of a privileged class, and that millions of people across the world would consider my privations to be an indescribable luxury.  How many people, after all, don’t have computers, cameras, blogs — you can finish the list.  A video camera is a serious luxury to people who aren’t warm or well-fed or well-housed.

But enough people have asked me to set something up, so I have.  It is a PayPal account, and I’ve seen that it works.

Now — in deep seriousness and sincerity — I am not counting friendship and love in dollars.  I will love you no less if you can offer nothing.  But I can promise you gratitude for anything you can do, comfortably.

So here it is.  And I will say no more about this subject.  Except THANKS TO EVERY ONE OF YOU.

Extra credit if you can identify the source of the title, too.

Here’s an appropriate soundtrack, I think — Henderson’s jaunty 1925 MONEY BLUES — with help from Louis, Joe Smith, and Hawkins:

TO MAKE A DONATION, PLEASE CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW!

https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=VBURVAWDMWQAS

And my readers and listeners and emailers have already increased my happiness a millionfold, so it is natural to write

May your happiness increase.

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CORNET PLAYER IN DISTRESS: CAN ANYONE HELP?

I just got an email from one of JAZZ LIVES’ most devoted readers, the UK cornetist / bandleader Carl Spencer.  I can’t help Carl out, but perhaps one of my brass scholars can?

Minor disaster on last Saturday’s gig, catering staff knocked my music stand over, and in grabbing for it my Conn Victor 80A slipped to the floor, and has jammed the mouthpiece in.  Even a local engineering company coukldn’t get it out, (I gave up trying after using all the normal methods….boiling water on the shank and cold on the mouthpiece etc.  The mouthpiece is now damaged around the rim after all the wrestling with mole grips. I’m sending it away today to a brass specialist. (The whole initial tubing is also off its solder points too! What a mess.)

I am therefore in urgent need of another Zottola 64B cornet mouthpiece. There’s none around over here. I wonder if you could run a “Distress Signal” in one of your blogs; it could be that one of your fine players has an unwanted spare they might sell?

In Carl’s honor, I have created a new category . . . see below.  Please send information to JAZZ LIVES as comments or to me at swingyoucats@gmail.com, and I will pass it on to Carl.  Thanks to all of you in advance!

“I GIVE UP!” SAID VERY LOUDLY

When I’ve been faced with something that’s annoying and frustrating — trying to find a parking space in Manhattan in an unwelcoming hour — after attempting everything plausible and reasonable, I have been known to say I GIVE UP! at high volume several times.  More often than not, just the dramatic pretense of a man ready to do the desperate act of overpaying for parking helps . . . a spot opens up.  The loud enactment of theatrical despair seems to help. 

So I am trying it here:

I GIVE UP!

“What is he complaining about?” you might ask.  It’s a technical problem.  I came back from the 2010 Whitley Bay International Jazz Festival with a new Panasonic HD video camera full of jazz videos — over one hundred fine performances.  And I began to download (or upload) them to YouTube, thence to this blog for all to see.  This worked wonderfully well in the US, and it worked — poorly and painfully slowly — in the UK.  It took something like three days to download four clips by the Hot Antic Jazz Band.  Then, here in Oxford, where the wireless broadband seems swift, nothing . . . either YouTube takes twelve hours to load a five-minute clip and then tells me (in my favorite new redundant phrase) “length of clip is too long” or it loads a clip in eight hours and then the video is out of synch with the audio, creating an impossible-to-watch spectacle.

If this latest batch of clips doesn’t load, I’m taking my clips and going off to do something else.  I’m going on strike.  You’ll see the Whitley Bay performances — starting in September. 

I will be grateful for any technical suggestions, but must say that I am hopeless at this: my dear friend Elin Smith tried to explain it to me, but her clear email had me converting formats back and forth until I was dizzy.  Pretend you’re writing to someone who hasn’t converted video files before . . . and sorry for the delay!