October 24, 2013
Last Saturday I was stranded in the Cartagena Colombia airport for almost six hours. I was not alone. Early that morning, the radar system at the Panama City airport went down, causing all flights in and out of it to be delayed. As it's the hub for the entire region, which meant that all travelers in Cartagena would wait in the gate lounge until the situation clears up.
By 3pm, we were all tense, tired and stressed out about our connections. The silence was deafening. Then, something magic happened. Members of the University of Richmond symphony whipped out their instruments, tuned them quickly, and launched into an impromptu concert for us.
Within seconds, the mood at the gate lounge was transformed from misery to ecstasy. At this moment, I realized that music is one of the most powerful forces in the world. It can soothe our soul and make us forget our problems. When they finished, there were smiles all around. People begin to strike up conversations with each other and by 4pm, we got the good news that the Panama City airport was back up and running. Many of us talked about the power of music and vowed to listen to more of it ... especially when we were stressed out during times of travel.
I shot a video of their first song. Note how loud the applause was, and how surprised they were at the positive feedback. VIDEO: THE AIRPORT LOUNGE SYMPHONY.Tweet
March 01, 2009
I just found a compilation of some of the best funk of that era: Mighty Superfunk Volume Six. It is mastered from the actual vinyl recordings, many of them singles. The opening track (Are We Together For a New Day?) sounds fresh and highly relevant. From there, the record builds up from the obscure (Queen Of Losers) to my all-time-faves (It's Your Thing and Shake What You Brought With You).
Right now, you can find used copies on Amazon (Mighty Superfunk Volume 6) or Ebay. Snap one up while you can!
March 11, 2007
For Your Consideration is the latest edition of Christopher Guest's twisted and cruel mind. Many of you might know him as half of the legendary Spinal Tap, and producer of all time sidesplitters such as Best In Show, Waiting For Guffman and The Might Wind.
In their most recent romp, Guest and all-star troupe (Fred Williard, Parker Posey, just to name a few) make and break dreams in hilarious order. The plot revolves around Oscar nominations and the hype machine that rolls up to the 5am annual announcement of nominations. Given the recency of the Academy Awards, you'll find this relevant to this year's competition.
The movie demonstrates three interesting phenoms:
1. Sometimes the buzz starts with a single suggestion that gets noticed by the subject and accelerated.
2. Good news changes people, sometimes for the worst.
3. The media is never your friend, just a user at best.
It is not a laugh out load movie like Best In Show or Spinal Tap, but it is a funny and make-you-think type film that you just have to see.