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C’est la vie

Posted by Mick on January 13, 2010 – 8:39 pm

Do you give
Do you live from day to day?
Is there no song I can play for you?
C’est la vie

Excuse me.  I’m listening to prog, and it gets into my head sometimes.

Why am I listening to prog?  That’s an excellent question, and normally I’d say it’s just because I dig it.  The last two nights, though, there has been another reason.  I’m trying something kinda fun.  Working on my main characters, as I’m writing their stories I want to listen to the music they would listen to.  As I was working out their vitals, I decided to make a Pandora station for each one.  Each one has his own station, and I’m training it very carefully to mirror who I see them as.  And as I train their station, I learn a bit more about them.  When I switch to writing them later, I can listen to those stations and get in the proper mindset.

Last night, I was working on the vitals of my third major character, who will not be getting much screen time but will actually be, at least in my head, the actual driver of the bus.  I decided he’s a big fan of prog.  And Weird Al.

I see a few of you in the back raising your hands.  What is prog?  By prog, I mean prog rock.  Prog is rock, freed from the basic 3 chord framework and mixed with elements of jazz and symphonic music.  Much more artistic, much more technically demanding, and frequently combined with lyrics drawn from fantasy.  Think Pink Floyd. King Crimson, Genesis (before Peter Gabriel left), Rush.  The songs tend to be long (Jethro Tull released an album that was one song), with extended instrumental breaks.  You might also notice complex time signatures, an odd number of beats to a measure.

I think this character also gets into some progressive metal.  Dream Theater, Opeth, Mastodon.  Yeah, I guess Mastodon would be in there somewhere.

A question came up as I was training his station.  What about Jethro Tull?  I like Tull, but would this guy?  How much of a purist is he?

Jethro Tull is a band that can be divisive.  I don’t really consider them prog.  They’re more art rock.  No, I don’t have time to discuss what the difference is, but it’s a crucial difference.  But that’s not important right now.  You like them, or you don’t.  At the end of the day, it’s not that important.

The question is, would the character like Tull?  In desperation, I reached out to the Twitterverse, and @rodneydp stepped in and saved the day – He listens to it, but it makes him think about how much better other bands are. And that, kiddies, is how a movie gets written.

That’s where I am on the script.  Things are going quite well.  I’m really getting a good feel for the main characters.  I have the major plot points outlined.  Progress is being made with only minimal damage to my social life.  I’m happy with it so far.

I’ve got a sponsor today!

My sponsor today is Nicole Bailey, and today is her birthday.  Everyone say happy birthday, Nicole.

I asked Nicole what she’d like me to talk about on her birthday, and she said that she just wanted to support Tara and I.  She digs the concept of two people trying to change their lives, moving away from the corporate world and into the art life, documenting their adventures and madness along the way.

I certainly appreciate that.

Nicole used to work with Tara and I.  Some of you probably don’t know this, but by day I’m a Technical Trainer with one of the largest IT Training companies in the world.  I teach computer networking, IT Security, Microsoft Server management, and Exchange Server.  Now you see why I want out.

Nicole worked for a branch of our company that did IT Recruiting.  She’s since moved on to a happier place, but she’s still in the Recruitment field, and doing pretty damn good at it. She works for Austin Ribbon & Computer, a company that provides services, hardware, and staff augmentation to the public sector, health care, K-12, and other areas.  The company is celebrating it’s 25th anniversary this year.

And she’s engaged.  She’ll be getting married very soon, followed by a trip to the Bahamas.

Thanks to Nicole for sponsoring me today.  And thank you for coming by and seeing what was going on.

Y’all come back now, you hear?

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