Weekend Wrap Up

Friday night was the Groove Machine gig at Gilberts. For those of you who are on Facebook, there are a <a href=”http://www.facebook.com/home.php#/photo_search.php?oid=48638556377&view=all”>couple of photos posted</a>. The crowd was warm, and really seemed to like us. The air, though, was cold.

On Saturday, I headed into the office a little after 9am, and got situated for billing day. I left the office a little after noon, and headed home. I took a little nap, and then headed to my gig in Bangor. It was very cold at that gig, as the stage is set up in front of some huge–and drafty–windows. I was able to get a WIFI connection from the hotel next door to the club, so I spent my breaks chatting with Susan via the Facebook chat program. I got pulled over twice on the drive home (stupid headlight), and stopped by the office to refill the printer with paper. I was home and in bed a little after 2am.

Sunday came, and so did the snow. Church was cancelled, and Susan let me sleep late. When I got up a little before 9am, I made breakfast for everyone. Then, I went to the office to refill the paper in the printer yet again. This time, with the snow and all, I just decided to stay at the office until the printing was done. I got home around noon. I had a bowl of Grapenuts for lunch, and perused Facebook for a while while running a virus scan on my home machine. Susan made twice-baked potatoes for supper. I went to bed at like 7:30pm, and spent a little time watching drum videos on YouTube. Then, lights out!

The Chicken Soup MI-5

This fiver is inspired by a bowl of my beloved wife’s Chinese Chicken Noodle soup. Your answers need not be related to food.

1) Chicken. We Americans eat lots of chicken, yet we’ve bred them to have little flavor. What’s something you do in your life that you do even though it has little flavor? That is, what is something you continue to do, though you receive little fulfillment for it? Take out the trash. Floss my teeth. Work on websites.

2) Noodles. Who invented them, the Chinese or the Italians? Tell us about your cultural heritage. Of what decent are you? I’m mostly an amalgam of UK, with mostly English/Scottish. There’s some French in there, and supposedly some American Indian somewhere along the line. The name Batty is supposed to be Welsh, but a genealogist once told me that many Scots, especially in the lowlands, took on Welsh names. Elwell and Maker are English names, and Cavenor is Scotch. Yattaw is on the French side of things.

3) Green onions. When I was a kid, I didn’t like onions. Now, I can’t get enough of them. What’s something you used to dislike, but now really like? Other than onions, I can’t really think of much.

4) Carrots. When I was a kid, I couldn’t eat carrots. Now, I can eat them, but I don’t really care for them too much. What’s something you never cared for as a child that you still don’t care for today? Opera.

5) Broth. Without broth, you don’t have soup. What’s the thing that, if you didn’t have it, would make you not be you?
I wouldn’t be me without the drums. If someone were to ask me “Who is Bill Batty,” I’d be most likely to respond “I’m a drummer.” And, I’d probably say that before I’d say “I’m a father,” or “I’m a husband.” Now, being a father and a husband is more important to me than being a drummer, but I’ve been a drummer longer.

Friday Fill-In #107

1. Enough with the freakin’ cold!

2. Talk radio causes me to be conflicted. (How much can I worry about the economy?)

3. I’ve been craving something lemon-y.

4. My children makes me laugh.

5. I wish I could go to Puerto Rico next week.

6. Some people I know with cancer has have been on my mind lately.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I’m looking forward to packing gear into the club at negative temperatures, tomorrow my plans include billing day and a gig in Bangor, and Sunday, I want to book that trip to Puerto Rico!

Flat Tire Shuffle

In those videos that I posted about recording, I said something about the “flat tire shuffle.” Jack, in one of her comments, asked “What’s a flat tire shuffle?”

In the realm of drumming, there are a zillion different shuffles: the swing, the Jazz shuffle, the double shuffle, the two-handed shuffle, the boogie, the humpty hump (ok, not that last one), etc. The flat tire shuffle takes the basic shuffle or Jazz pattern on the ride cymbal, whatever feels right on the bass, and something a little unusual on the snare drum. Rather than putting the snare drum accents on the downbeats of beats two and four (like most rock music), the snare plays on every 1/8th note off-beat. So instead of “one, TWO, three, FOUR, you get one AND two AND three AND four AND.

That probably doesn’t make a lot of sense. Here, try this: Dwight Yokum plays “The Pocket of a Clown.” Viola! The flat tire shuffle! The name comes from the sound: the sound a car tire makes when it’s rolling and flat.

Recording Session Videos

After a few false starts (I forgot to print directions, and the address we were given wasn’t even correct), Three Button Deluxe had a very successful recording session today. In six hours, we set up all our gear, set up the microphones and got the right levels, recorded 10 songs, two takes each, and got the background vocal recorded. All with only one false start! Even the “bad” takes were good ones; we just picked the better sounding of the two. I brought Susan’s Flip video camera with me, from an idea spawned by a comment from Jack.  I uploaded them to YouTube. Check them out, if you want.

The Meeting MI-5

This MI-5 is inspired by the five meetings I had yesterday.

Meeting 1, the pastor: Tell us an interesting story about you and a playground.
We used to play this game on the playground called “Red Butt.” It was a game we invented. You take a tennis ball, and bounce it off a wall. The other kids try and catch the ball. If they catch it, they throw it back against the wall, and continue. The game really gets fun when someone drops the ball. When they drop the ball, they start running to tag the wall. The other players run to grab the ball, and try to throw it against the wall before the drop-er touches the wall. If the person who dropped the ball get to the wall first, they’re safe. If another person snags the ball, and throws it against the wall before the drop-er gets there, well, here’s what happens. The person who dropped the ball bends over, butt out, head touching the wall. The person who grabbed the ball and hit the wall with it gets a free throw at the persons bum! And since the drop-er is bent over, they can’t see when the ball is going to arrive! It’s really quite fun, and I think I need to put a game together!

Meeting 2, the insurance lady: What typical workplace benefit do you not have currently that you wish you did have?
I currently have life insurance personally, but I’d like to have more. A voluntary group life plan would be nice. (The benefits we do get are very generous.)

Meeting 3, the real estate agent: Relate to us something about an experience buying/selling/renting a home.
Susan and I are in the very beginning stages of selling our current home, and buying something “new.” I’ve only purchased one home before, and never sold one. It’s quite a new experience for me.

Meeting 4, the radio sales rep: What’s your favorite radio station? What’s the genre? Why do you like it?
Since purchasing my XM radio, I really only listen to NPR on FM. There are many stations I like on XM: ’80s on 8, alternative country on 12, bluegrass on 14, clean comedy on 151, and the talk stations 158 and 165. And I like “America Right” on 166. Oh, and I’ve also been listening to “The Catholic Channel” on 117. I like their question and answer shows. I think Protestant talk radio could really use more Q/A shows.

Meeting 5, the dessert loving banker: What’s your favorite dessert? Why?
Oh, that’s tough. Susan’s cheesecake is good, as are her cookies. Mom’s chocolate pie with cooked pudding (not instant) is high on the list. And I really like Pepperidge Farm’s chocolate cake too. Prism Glass’s Italian lemon creme cake has been in my thoughts recently, too.

Friday Fill In #106

1. It’s January; just a few more weeks, and I can get the scooter back out.

2. More sleep is what I crave most right now.

3. Cork and wine go together like Mickey Mouse and fish sticks.

4. Cocoa butter and body yogurt is so nourishing (to my skin).

5. Let us dare to run naked in the streets. (Not really, but it’s the first thing I thought of.)

6. It’s only a matter of time before I sell my home.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I’m looking forward to an evening home with my family, tomorrow my plans include a recording session, and Sunday, I want to just kick back and chill a little!