Thanks to a combination of good genes, a pretty decent lifestyle, an iron will to keep pushing along no matter what challenges beset me, and good health (thanks be to God), I don’t plan on leaving this mortal coil for a long, long time but if I do, this would be the song I would request to be played at my funeral liturgy. Amen.
We haven’t seen such a clear sky in a while, but the winds have done a fine job today sweeping out the bad air.
Folks, I can’t quite say why, but I have a feeling that this year will leave a lot of people satisfied, no matter what part of the great divide you rest in. May everything be better for you this year, and may we find some common ground (we always have music, though, don’t we?).
It seems 2017 was a rather pleasant year for some, a horrifying ordeal for others. I’d have to say that I split the difference. Some things happened which were immensely pleasant, and some minor irritants popped up in my work life and health. Otherwise, 2017 was a success.
First, a lot of preparatory work was done on a project that I hope to partake in in the early part of 2018, which includes a big move to a location I have yet to solidly pick. Next, a lot of friends, both local and overseas, were either newly made or reconnected with. Iceland and the Czech Republic were absolute joys for me (and I thank my good, beautiful and gracious hosts for making me feel welcomed). Macedonia was something of a homecoming, seeing people I consider to be my brothers, and Bulgaria was phenomenal. The quality of people I met there this year was beyond my wildest expectations, and dear brother Yasen did a wonderful job of organizing Without Borders (it’s only a shame that one has to wait two years to visit these good folks again).
Many amazing releases came out, (just check out the blog to see) and I’m particularly thankful for forming digital friendships with so many, but especially Santiago and A. M. Ferrari-Fradejas, Noël Akchoté, Jeff Gburek, and maintaining good ones with Kopeikin, Gregory Ayriyan, and so many others.
The personal and mushy details I’ll leave out, except to say that it feels good to love and to be loved.
My friends (and I’m proud to call each one of you that venerable word), I wish you the best for 2018. We’ll surely have to endure a few headaches, but we’ll survive it intact. We always do. A Merry Christmas (twice if you’re Julian Calendar Orthodox), Hanukkah, Eid, Diwali or average day to you all.
Your Hip Priest and friend,
Outside of a trip to Amoeba Records to waste a few dollars on charmingly odd and psychedelic/funky Iranian and Ethiopian music, not much to report. The political scene is still in tatters, and probably will be for the foreseeable decade. Congratulations to those folks who threaten to punch people out for a differing political opinion. We’re now as divided as we were in the 1850s. That ended up well, didn’t it?
Forget political discussion. After surveying some Disqus feeds, I realize it’s not worth it at all to talk to people in the US to convince them of anything. With that being said, I’m still up for discussing things over a shot of good local hootch or dinner any time.
I’d like to offer a big thank you to those who have managed to keep my blog link in your feeds despite my absence. Though I plan to concentrate mainly on A Miscellany Of Tasteful… as my home for music and the arts, I might consider blogging on topics I find dear to my heart which are not of a cultural nature.
The unfortunate reality is that it is almost impossible to engage in respectful dialog anymore, as people have planted their feet in the camp of their choice, and those who have friends on both sides of the political and cultural divide have no truck in this society. Therefore, if I post something of a political, religious or cultural nature, you’re free to read it and honestly critique it. In fact, I encourage it. What I won’t tolerate is either spam or some of the grotesque and vulgar comments in the manner of what I see on Facebook or other social media. What’s more, if I had called you a friend and you start acting in this manner, perhaps it’s best that you be gone.
For those of you who weren’t chased away from the last paragraph, thank you. Your friendship is truly appreciated.