Archive for the ‘Photography’ Category

A surprise April Fool’s Day Snow got to our goblin.

I have been pretty busy lately. I have been jamming on-line with my originals band “The Merchants of Death”. We have not played together in almost forty years! They were champs with handling the technology, but the latency or delay you get is a bit frustrating. A couple weeks ago – after all of our Covid 19 shots and waiting periods we got together and played live – IN THE SAME ROOM!

That was really very neat. Our on-line sessions have been a blessing during the lockdown and restrictions. Playing our old original songs and mixing them in with current cover tunes is just a perfect environment for me. I will share some of our recordings soon.

I also did a live recording session a few weeks ago. It was a cool project. I was to record the drummer playing in isolation as the drummer listened to a mix of the other recorded instruments and vocals! The drummer did an excellent job in following the band as drummers usually try to lead the band. The recordings were clean and after a little post production I sent the final tracks for assembly and final mix.

I have also been doing a lot of long-needed outdoor yard work and landscaping around my house. This winter and spring were bizarre. I wish I had posted these pictures earlier, but it is a challenge sometimes deciding which project to focus on. I hope you enjoy a look back at this year’s snow and blooms. All of these pictures were taken within a few days of each other. It was an amazing sight.

Setting up my drums for the first recording project of 2021!

Today for a brief time we got a bit of snow. So much for April Showers!

I was really fortunate the other day. I had just gotten in my car and saw a hawk fly right over my head and land close to me. I wished I had my camera but got out my phone in the hopes he/she would stay long enough for me to get a picture or two. After I managed to do that the hawk remained there and kept looking up. I started shooting a video that I posted on YouTube and want to share with you.

I was curious what the hawk was doing just sitting there. Not too long had passed and something made the hawk jump a bit. I kept filming and noticed that other hawks were taking turns and ‘dive-bombing’ the hawk on the ground. Even in the video with the background music you can hear the other hawks screeching as they approach the ‘target’ on the ground. I realized there are three sibling hawks being trained by the adult (I think this is the female as they are larger than the males).

Soon the adult leaves quickly lands in a nearby tree where it almost immediately gets bumped by one of the siblings. I look around and finally see a cat on the ground, trying to make a meal of their training games. Soon the adult flew off and the three babies followed to another practice ground.

I just thought this was cool to see and hope you do as well. Here is the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L8GU7NjHUrc&t=21s

It has been a while since I was out and about, especially with my camera. Overnight we had a steady snowfall. There was no breeze or wind so the snow fell and piled up where it landed. I took my camera with me for a walk in our neighborhood park. I wanted to share some of the photos with you. Local weather people say it has been over 10 years since we have had this much snow at one time.

Enjoy some untouched winter photos.

Real Navigation Instructions

Some time ago I was on a trip and opened up Google Maps on my cell phone. I put in the address and after traveling for about fifteen minutes I heard a notification I did not understand. I wanted to see what my next turn was………

As I got closer to the exit I did not recognize the highway or route other than I 74 in the top left corner. It said I was in Cincinnati …

I have never seen these routes and highways in Ohio, let alone Cincinnati

I know the city fairly well and it was no panic but if I was on the road in an unfamiliar area and I had a turn in less than 2 miles that showed a highway not in the region and not even believable, I would have been in trouble lol. I slowed down and stopped to take a couple screen shots.

As I got closer I took a screen capture of the mystery highway direction

I saw this recently in my photos and thought it might give you a bit of a laugh.

Y East

Why not?

I I

Interstate I

I have not posted pictures as often this year as in previous ones. I love taking pictures but have not gotten out as much. This has been a beautiful fall in many ways. Taking walks in our local parks and our favorite Spring Grove Cemetery, my wife and I took pictures all day.

As usual it is cloudy and overcast, but the colors held their own. It was simply beautiful everywhere. I hope you enjoy our glimpse of fall.

I have not had the chance to get out and take pictures – or a bunch of other things – but here are a few pictures using my cell phone from around my house.

MSK 1
MSK 2
MSK 3
MSK 4
MSK 5
MSK 6
MSK 7
MSK 8
MSK 9
MSK 10
MSK 11

I agree, pictures do brighten up a post!

I posted songs from the first half of our live set when I was playing with The Chase earlier. Today I would like to share with you select songs from the second half of our set. The recording is decent – though this is ancient as it was recorded on a cassette tape!!!

Anyway, people all over the world are having tough times. Stuck indoors is the least of our concerns. Sit back, stay at home and listen to a live band performing classic rock songs from Jethro Tull to Santana and Creed.

As a note of mild interest; I have no pictures of the vocalist in this particular recording. I have video, but compared to the hi-res available today, the videos just don’t look very good. Sean (Shoeless Shawn) Bandy is the lead vocalist this evening.

Have a drink and a great evening in and stay safe!

My former band, The Chase performing live

Thanks for the visit!

Thank you for your continued friendship. The story of friends and talented musicians, artists of all kinds was fun in the telling. Followers will know the names and projects I have been thrilled to be involved with. Sacrifices. Heart break. Overwhelming joy.

I have told the story but I also have my archives to share. I started recording with a reel-to-reel tape deck when I was 14. I recorded everything. Everyone. Everywhere (once I had portable recorders lol!)

The medium has changed many times over. Some of the video, for example, was amazing on a small tube television. It just does not stand up to the quality of large screens with high resolution. I did not include the ancient videos on this post because it just looks bad/old.

For some reason I did not take a lot of photographs in this time frame. Unfortunately, I do not have any pictures of the lead vocalist in this recording….. Shoeless Shawn was not with The Chase long before we stopped playing out. So I collected more recent pictures I had taken of group shots of friends, family and fans we have known over the years.

With a little free time on my hands, I have been going through my archives. This is an old recording from my Nakamichi stereo cassette player! I think it is straight off the board. I did not run sound for this recording. Our friend Dave Houston was at the helm.

Everyone stay healthy, and with social distancing, stay at home, grab a drink, and put up your feet. Press play and listen to some live music!

The Chase

When my wife and I purchased our first, and only home about thirty years ago, the adjacent property included irregular strips, pieces, an access road and a very old overgrown field. Over the years we cleared some of the vacant land next to our house. We built fire pits further and further out in the ‘wilderness’. It was mostly brush , grapevine and honeysuckle.

We didn’t use any equipment other than hand tools more sophisticated than pick ax and shovel. Each year we cleared more land to the side of our house of the brush and undergrowth. We had been doing this for a couple of years and noticed a huge tree we had not even seen before. It had towered over everything but through past decades the brush and small trees had provided a path for the insidious grapevine. As it does to anything above ground, the grapevine climbs anything it can and then covers it with a blanket of leaves. Each year the plants and trees try to grow new sprouts and shoots but are caught in a strangle-hold by the vines. Eventually the trees can’t bend down enough and break into pieces and soon die looking like a rounded skeleton. The smaller trees were already dead or damaged beyond hope. We managed to save more than we thought possible and we were determined to save the huge cotton-wood tree that was already entangled in vines spreading through the lower branches.

The neighbors thought we were nuts. Then a company came and bought the land we had cleared of debris and undergrowth and the rest of the surrounding wooded area. Years and years went by and they did nothing with the land. We spoke with the owners and told them that if they ever sell the land we would like to be the first offer. We also mentioned our clearing and using of the property and they were fine with that. We continued.

Over the course of our time here we have purchased all the pieces of what used to be abandoned property. Not much total, but a jig-saw of ‘odds and ends’ surrounding the neighborhood we made it our home! My posts often refer to feeding wildlife animals and birds in our tiny sanctuary. A number of neighbors share in the maintenance and care of this land now.

We have owned all the property pieces for a few years and have been trying to get it surveyed. It took them two years after signing the contract but finally the surveyors came out and tagged all the properties including our original house and land. When I came home from work there were orange flags everywhere along our side of the street and throughout the woods. We even discovered one neighbor’s fence was actually in our yard.

I was so thrilled and for the first time I walked every inch of land knowing what was our property. With that lengthy introduction I want to share a poem I wrote after that walk. Thanks again for your visits, and I hope this will be a great New Year for all!

The Border” (C) MSK 1-22-2020

Orange flags everywhere but only where
We are
They disappear through the ages and few
Return

Moving, shifting, season upon season upon
Buried
No concerns no doubting they never change
Waiting

I’ve just walked every inch of our border
Cut or cured, with muscle and bone
We laughed loud and worked harder
But we didn’t have to do it alone

Standing for generations before we embraced it
Mighty
Ruins become playgrounds, wilderness a haven
Our home

I’ve just walked every inch of our border
Cut or cured, with muscle and bone
We laughed loud and worked harder
But we didn’t have to do it alone

What’s yours is yours thanks for giving back what
Is mine
Fires burned, pumpkins were carved by many
Good night

Moving, shifting, season upon season upon
Buried
No concerns no doubting they never change
Waiting