Archive for the 'Virtual Existence' Category

A musician friend’s blog …

Friday, April 13th, 2012

Check out New Beginnings through Online Music Collaboration « Tamra’s BLadifrigginOG, the blog by my Second Life friend (and real life singer/Broadway star) Tamra Hayden. She doesn’t post often (yes, like me, shut up), but she gives great insights into various aspects of being an independent musician, plus advance music of her live music dates.

Spook’s Cowboy Bebop Blog

Sunday, July 10th, 2011

This is the blog of a Second Life/Facebook friend:

Spook’s Cowboy Bebop Blog.

(And no, it’s not THE Spook, my old college buddy that I’ve mentioned here so many times. No connection whatsoever.)

So anyway: Check it out!

Mandatory Update, Various Things

Wednesday, October 27th, 2010

… so let’s make this quick, shall we?

Brutal summer is OVER! But it’s still hotter than it should be – close to 90F on Monday. Here at the end of October.

Only watching a few current shows on TV this fall: Community, 30 Rock, Venture Bros., America’s Funniest Home Videos, Mary Shelley’s Frankenhole (though that’s in reruns … just 10 original episodes so far), SNL, Attack of the Show, Infomania … and that’s it. 3 NBC, 1 ABC, 2 Cartoon Network, 1 G4TV, 1 Current TV. That’s all that’s worth watching. On the other hand, the dearth of worthy programming — seriously, there’s not any decent filler any more to just have on while doing chores around the house –frees me from the tyranny of network scheduling, and allows me to focus on things outside of the tube’s reach.

I’m still not getting anything accomplished, but it’s the principle.

Most of my posting is on Facebook these days, so go friend me other there, ‘kay? ‘kay.

And on Twitter too. I often “live Tweet” the shows I mentioned above, so if you want to join in, send me a comment or IM and I’ll show ya how it’s done.

And oh yeah, I still DJ occasionally in Second Life, although not as much as I once did:

Okay, that’ll do for now.

Note to Self …

Tuesday, April 13th, 2010

I’m blogging this to remind myself to check back. It’s a link I found in a fellow Lost-twitterer’s bio: We Are Movie Geeks.

And seriously, how did we ever watch TV before Twitter?? I’m not one of those “Here’s what I’m having for breakfast” Twitterers, but it’s a huge rush watching an already great show like Lost and at the same time following hundreds on conversations and reactions on the episode. It’s huge. It makes TV watching a wildly social activity.

Who would have thought that was possible.

Music Blogs

Wednesday, June 17th, 2009

A couple of music blogs I just discovered on Twitter: Blalock’s Indie Rock Playlist, and Whisper All the Notes in My Ears.

Over the past year, DJing in Second Life, I’ve been exposed to a lot of Indie & Alternative music, and I’m liking a lot of it (especially the girl bands) every bit as much as my native classic rock. And blogs like these are a great place to dive into the subject, especially Blalock’s, since he has huge lists of recommended music.

So check ’em out.

3 Days, 3 Birthdays!

Wednesday, April 29th, 2009

Three of my friends (1 former co-worker, 2 Internet friends, all female) are having birthdays these next three days:

First of all, today is the birthday of Kim Novak of Yay! Kim Blog. Kim was one of my first blogging friends when I first started over 6 years ago, and about the only one from that era that I still keep up with. Bonus points: She’s a fellow Texan! Go wish Kim a great birthday, and listen to some of her great music while you’re there!

Tomorrow (the 29th) is the birthday of one of my newest friends, Debra from Atlanta. I met her in Second Life last summer (where she goes by the name of Stephi), and she’s one of my best friends in that virtual world. Bonus points: We were born just 3 weeks apart!

And finally, on Thursday it’s the birthday of Vickie, a longtime reader and commenter on this here blog, and former co-worker at Chucky’s Madhouse, where she still endures to this day. Bonus points: She’s a fellow Texan too!

Happy Birthday to all my friends!

Get a (Second) Life

Thursday, September 4th, 2008

Aside from the usual jobhunting, I’ve mostly just been DJing in Second Life (hey, it’s free, plus I’ve been earning some miniscule tips), which is not only teaching me new skills, but also serves an informal networking functionality.

I’m currently DJing four regular shifts at three clubs right now: Rockers, Club Siren and Belar Inshan Social Club, with the Orion available any time I want to open it up, and an offer pending for the club I previously managed, Midnight at the Forum. (The reason I quit managing was because I was trying to fill 2 clubs — and they just gave me a third — in exchange for a small (virtual) house. Now I just DJ for tips, and I takes me just two shows to pay rent on a house that’s twice as big!)

As I’ve mentioned, I used to DJ in college, and never imagined I’d be doing it again, but thanks to the miracle of internet, I can inflict my musical tastes on the musical public! I’m also meeting a lot of interesting folks from all over.

One of the coolest new people I’ve met is Tamra Hayden, the real-life Broadway actress/singer/songwriter. She performs live concerts in Second Life, reaching a worldwide audience thanks to, you guessed it, the miracle of the internet.

Here’s a video of her singing in REAL life, performing “Eden Will Bloom”:

And Tamra’s not the only musician I’ve met in the virtual realm: At my DJ gig Monday night, several of us noticed a young lady hanging around on the fringes of the dance floor, unsure what to make of everything, and it turned out that it was her first night in Second Life. A few of us at the club began talking to her and giving her things we had previously gotten for free, and letting her know some good places to get more.

We also found out that she is the lead singer of the North Carolina band, The Situationals. They’ve got some really great music, and she’s got a good powerful voice, reminiscent of The Motels and Pat Benatar — but the songs (and the band) are much better than those too. Here’s a sample of their work:

And finally, I’ve previously mentioned Mazzie, the young lady from Australia whom I met on my first day in Second Life.

The reason I’m mentioning her today is that she recently sent me this joke:

St. Peter is at the Pearly Gates checking up on the people waiting to enter Heaven. He asks the next one in line, ‘So, who are you, and what did you do on Earth?’ The fellow says, ‘I’m Barack Obama, and I was the first black to be elected President of the United States ‘ St. Peter says, ‘The U.S.? A black President? You gotta be kidding me! When did this happen?’ Obama says, ‘About twenty minutes ago.’

She also added that McCain “is a right cock”, and that Hilary “needs a good beating”.

It’s good to know that the people in other countries take an interest in our democracy …


Thursday, June 12th, 2008

I need to post more, I know, but basically I’ve just been DJing some more in Second LIfe … I do have things to say about it, of course (like: I finally got wife my to try Second Life, and she’s hooked — mostly on the shopping part; I’ve done four DJ gigs in under 2 weeks, and am already in serious talks with at least 3 clubs for paying gigs; my fan club is up to 68 members already; and I had the idea to preserve my playlists send them to everybody in my fan club after ever gig), but I’m too busy actually doing those things to write about them in detail …

Anyway, gotta post something: I’ve previously mentioned Epic Fu, a fascinating, fast-paced video newsmagazine. EF recently was discontinued and given a facelift, and relaunched.

I think I remember liking this more before, but it’s still got the same edgy, energetic hostess, the same jump cuts, the same kind of piling on of lots of different subjects — my ADD loves it — and the same casual youth-cultural attitude (at one point she says, “I’m not just blowing smoke up your ass when I say this …” — now that’s what I call cutting edge journalism!), so I’m posting the latest three epiosdes for your amusement.


DJ Report

Sunday, June 8th, 2008

Well, I’m happy to report that my debut in my regular slot as a DJ in Second Life went very well in spite of technical glitches (stupid Winamp ate one-and-a-half of my playlists just hours before the show) and accidents of nature (our power went off 15 minutes before the end of my show due to wind storms in our area).

Other than that, though, the music I picked to play was solid, I got a lot of great comments, and the club had a nice-sized crowd (mostly with people that *I* knew and asked to come, further illustrating my value as a DJ).

My “fan club” (okay, okay, it’s really just a mailing list, but still it’s a measure of my popularity) is up to 50 people now (after just one complete show!), and three more club owners are wanting me to do regular slots this week or next.

Ha! I knew that once I could finally get in to do a show, my musical tastes and networking skills would do the rest.

By the way, the picture above is my avatar (yeah, yeah, it’s based on the Japanese hipster kid, or harajuku archetype, because all the other male archetypes in SL are these big musclebound apes), but that’s not the club where I worked my DJ magic … yet.

I just wanted to post a shot of me posing in the smoking hot DJ booth of Club Orion, the club owned by Kelly Yap Studios in SL and the next club where I’ll be entertaining the masses, such as they are.

And because that picture didn’t do justice to the club or the booth, here’s a wider shot of my little throne room:

Pretty sweet, huh? It gives the illusion that I know what I’m doing …

Anyway, I need to get back to whipping my thousands of MP3’s into workable playlists …

Hey, Mr. DJ

Tuesday, June 3rd, 2008

I’ve mentioned that I’ve been dabbling in Second Life in recent months, and have even been in job discussions with a potential employer smart enough to see Second Life (and the other social networking sites I belong to) as an asset.

What I haven’t mentioned is something that I’ve been angling to do in Second Life, but have encountered lots of foot-dragging and excuse-making.

This past weekend, however, I began getting more aggressive about my endeavors, and finally achieved my goal:

I’m an online DJ!

On Sunday, I was supposed to have a quick test of my connection at one of the many virtual dance clubs in Second Life (an Irish-themed club, at that!), but the scheduled DJ didn’t show up, so I ended up spinning tunes (figure of speech) for about an hour and a half. (Good thing I had already compiled a sizable playlist.)

And they liked me so much they decided to keep me!

Keira, the club manager, offered me the 5-7 (Pacific Time) slot on Thursdays, so I snapped it up. And today she messaged me that she wants me to do a special theme night on the 27th (we’re going to do a hippie night, but with more than just 60s music).

My playlist on Sunday, and pretty much every time I go on, will be a good mix of new music (the more accessible new alternative and indie music, like Panda Bear, LCD Soundsystem, Portishead, Foxboro Hot Tubs, Hem, and one of my personal favorites, The Go! Team), classic rock (mostly album cuts, not the singles that everybody’s sick of), and a few dance floor crowd-pleasers (like “Brick House” and “Jump Around” — I’m certainly not above pandering).

And of course, Weird Al. You can’t DJ in Second Life without Weird Al.

Anyway, it was exciting on Sunday to get back to my college roots, going back to playing DJ. I always enjoyed to take the graveyard shifts during finals week, when I could ignore the formats and play what I wanted. Usually I could count on the Spook to tap on the window about 3 a.m. and help me get the records on. We’d sit around drinking Cokes out of glass bottles and take calls from the few listeners up at those wee hours.

This feels a lot like that, except with technologies the way they are, I can chat with several listeners at once, get instant feedback, and they can shout out comments about the songs and discuss among each other. As a bonus, I can have listeners in all parts of the world.

Of course, this isn’t anything like having a real radio show. For starters, I’ll be DJing for audiences for about 20 or 30 people tops, and sometimes as small as three or four. Also, this job doesn’t pay, except in micro-tips — although at this particular club, all tips go to a charity, Project Children. (I like the donation aspect; I actually feel productive doing something as frivolous as playing music.)

Oh, and another bonus: I have a fan club!

Okay, okay, it’s just a mailing list group, but I’ve got 20 members so far, and they’ll have my DJ tag over their names while they’re dancing to the music I play.

Hey, I’m out of work; I’ll take my ego-boosts where I can find them.

Oh, and I get to play and promote my own original music!

So seriously, if you’re already on Second Life, come by on Thursday. Again, it’ll be at 5-7 Pacific Time (7-9 Texas time), and the name of the club is Nancy Blake’s West of Ireland.

I could use the attendance boost on my first time in my regular slot.

And tell the host you showed up because you heard the DJ is HOT …

Couldn’t hurt …