Sunday, August 31, 2008


Saturday, August 16, 2008

Nashville Parts & Pieces

Adrian's cheat sheet for "partial lyrics" : The Construction of Light,
in which, as an experiment, he assigned words to certain notes.

Nashville Trip, Over Due Report


( not that anyone was really on the edge of their chair )

This trip was divided in purpose:

a. To visit with family
b. To witness the return of King Crimson ,Version VIII

I will address the "b." section of this journey in the two
following posts as to not cause those interested in show reports
to have to wade through the personal aspects.

Franklin is home to my oldest sister and her husband, my nephew,
his wife and daughter, live in the same neighborhood.
It is always nice to be able to combine pleasure with pleasure.

I arrived in Franklin on August 1st after making
he 4.5 hour drive from Eastern TN.

It was a lovely day, hot though it was.
carried with me boxes of family photos which
haven't been seen for many a moon, some I don't
know that I have ever seen or was too young to
These photos date back to the 1800s through the 1980s.

My other sister, here in the east, has been the keeper of
said boxes, not necessarily by choice.
So, it was to be a weekend of travel through history.
We started this process very soon after arrival pictures
pread out across the dining room table.

Lot's of memories, many of which had been buried and
were, suddenly, back in the light. More good ones
but some, I'd just as soon forget. Oh well, we must
face the past to understand the present, no ?

Friday evening was to be composed of dinner followed
by a nice evening of music under the stars.
As reported in an earlier post, we were to see jazz
songstress Annie Sellick and her band with
guest artist, Jeff Coffin of Bela Fleck & The Flecktones.
As it turns out, Jeff Coffin had to cancel, no matter.

My sister had invited a friend to join us for dinner
and the concert, a lovely woman whom she
had met on the local Mah Jong circuit, which
seems to have quite the following in the community.

We enjoyed a nice dinner of lasagna ( taken from
a Southern Living recipe, can't go wrong.)
, fruit, bread and great company.

Then it was time to load up and head over to the concert.

I really like the community and the town of Franklin.
My sister's neighborhood is pretty new, in fact, building
is still in progress and eventually, they will have their own
shopping area which will eliminate the need to really go anywhere.
By contrast, I live in an older neighborhood from back in the day
when everyone has a good sized yard, no neighborhood organization to speak of
and, no rules per se. Of course we look out for each other and respect
our respective spaces, with some exceptions, but that's another story.

The sense of community there in my sister's 'hood is
something to behold, very attracting. This concert series
is a good example. Of course, lots of people of the music
industry reside there so, music has to play a part.

The homes are all magnifico and designed after older,
landmark architecture of downtown Franklin.

So, the neighbors gather on the lawn around a grand,
sculptured fountain with chairs, beverages, some with
food, to enjoy some fine music and witness the setting of
the sun.

I always keep a couple of bag chairs in my car for just such an occasion.

Annie Sellick and her band were very enjoyable.

Upright bass, drums,keyboard,trumpet and vocals. Mostly jazz standards.

( Editor's note: Blogger has an issue with line spacing after adding a picture in the body of a post, until I learn how to deal with said issue, we are stuck with double spacing, arrrgghhh. )

The company was the more enjoyable aspect of this concert on the lawn. My nephew and my sister's friend joined us. Eventually, we wandered up the street to finish the concert on the front porch of more friends of my sister's. We could still hear the music as long as it lasted but, conversation was now the order of the evening, most enjoyable.

The rest of the weekend in Franklin was pretty laid back, which as fine by me. Visiting, looking through the boxes of memories, enjoying good meals.

Sunday afternoon, I had my first lesson in Mah Jong when my sister invited yet another friend to join us and to give me some pointers and rules. Very much fun though, more complicated then I imagined.

Saturday night, at the first King Crimson show, I was fortunate enough to secure a second ticket for the Sunday show, my hope was that I could persuade my sister's friend ( from the Friday evening concert ) to join me. Sadly, due to health reasons, she had to decline. I was somewhat disappointed as I didn't see her again for the rest of my visit.

Monday was a relaxed leisurely morning, I loaded up and headed east around noon. I only made one stop on the way home, at a doomed Starbucks where I filled my cup and purchased five pounds of "Pike Place" whole coffee beans. ( Saving 10 bucks by bulk. ) ;-)

I'm enjoying a cup as we speak...

Read further if you are interested in the King Crimson shows.

( Which got posted in the wrong order, oops. )

King Crimson V.VIII August 3rd, Nashville (Night Two)

After the show Saturday night and, before dinner, we stayed around
the venue for a while, chatting with other fans, absorbing the glow
of the aftershow.
We noticed that the car next to mine had a parking ticket on it, $50.00. Ouch !

The venue sent out a last minute e-mail stating that we could use the lot
for free but, we had to get a ticket by using a special code.

Pat and Gavin came out and chatted with those of us hanging about, signed some
stuff, the usual escape / meet & greet stuff.
Gavin eventually got in the vehicle with the ticket on it. ( Maybe Pat too )
I hoped they wouldn't have to pay that fine.

Sunday afternoon, I arrived in Hillsboro Village a little later then I did Saturday,
my brakes sounding somewhat similar to the discordant section of Sex, Sleep,
Eat, Drink, Shave (optional), Dream.

Tickledrop was holding our place in line this time and I was able to stand in line
for a shorter period. Thanks Tickle !
Her sister was to join us also, she arrived a little later.
Again, it was fun getting to know our queue mates.
A young couple in front of us from Arkansas were there for their first K.C. experience,
they can be seen in a Sid Smith vid on the DGM site as well as Tickledrop ( Rena Faye).
The edge of my white shirt also made the cut .

Second row tonight, directly in front of the Twang Bar King.
I managed to stay with Tickledrop and her sister for the duration this time and
what fun it was.

After we settled, we took turns making our way back up to the lobby for more merch
perusing and bathroom breaks.
The ever lovely Martha was at the top of the aisle with Ava & Leah. My, Ava has sure grown.

We spoke briefly, exchanged hugs, and then got ready for showtime.

Merch, merch, merch...

I picked up the Gavin Harrison cd "Drop" and # 12 of only 500 of the lithograph
of the In The Court of the Crimson King cover art. Tickledrop has # 13.

( Too much money on merch ! )

Tickledrop gifted me with a Discipline "celtic knot" mousepad, which made great personal
fans when the room got too warm. ( the A.C. in The Belcourt actually works very well )

Thanks Tickledrop !

The same intro music, the same announcement except, this time the announcer allowed
a little more space for thunderous applause after the "40th Anniversary Tour" part.

The Crim hit the stage to an a standing ovation , to which Adrian replied, "Thank you, goodnight !"
Always good for a laugh, that one.

Drum Duo
Construction of Light

I think they got a standing ovation after each one of these...
Correct me if I am wrong, anyone. I was prepared to give them a

standing O after each song but, I don't think the crowd was up to that idea. lol

Three of a Perfect Pair
( Adrian wasn't quite in effects position for the solo part in this one, recovered nicely )

Vroom / Coda

Walking On Air

( Replaced "One Time" from last night, a gorgeous rendering, beautiful ! )

( Always a crowd favorite )

Level 5
Talking Drum

( Scorching ! )


There was a drum barrage intro here that included
the band and sounded like a new song was taking shape.
It held great promise. Tickledrop and her sister said that Tony sounded like a hellicopter while Robert sounded like a train. )


Encore again

We knew they were coming back out because
Martha, Leah and Ava were up at the stage clapping
along with the crowd...

They knew something we didn't.

Elephant Talk

E.T. is always special with Tony on the finger extensions, which look to me like sawed off drumsticks after seeing them a little closer, the tapping effect adds something to the performance. ( Though I do appreciate Trey Gunn's additions as well )

They were even tighter this night, more confidant after
first night jitters were swept away, which were undetectable
to this audient.

Again we stuck around the venue for a while, getting to know attendees and
releasing some of the electricity accumulated from another electrifying experience.

Stood around with Martha in the lobby for a bit, meeting a member of her family and
chatting about "the name" for a bit.

I was gifted with a coveted laminate, Access All Areas pass. ( as seen above )

Not wanting to be a pester, yet, not wanting to waste the opportunity, I decided to
wander back stage, passing Robert in the hallway, he did not speak, as expected.

I had to cross the stage to access the Greenroom, only way to get there. It was a mighty treat
to cross the Crimson stage while crew was busy with the load out. I half expected someone to
say something to me but, the power of the laminate made me invisible.

I went to the Greenroom where Adrian, Gavin and others were hanging about.
I got Gavin to sign my copy of his cd, "Drop", a collaboration with 05ric.
Adrian signed the gig poster.

I didn't stay long I didn't want to abuse the privilege or seem like a stalker
type fan.

Again, we strolled down to Bosco's and again, we were seated next to Adrian and company.
Adrian came over and sat with us for a while and signed some more "stuff".

It was a fabulous close to the wonderful musical portion of a great weekend.
I headed back to Franklin after saying goodbyes to new friends, brakes grinding and
scrunching all the way. They would have to wait... after all, I didn't need to use them
much on the way home.

When I did get home, I got my brakes repaired, the next day, my driver's side door
nearly fell off. It was kind of like the car in The Blue's Brothers Movie when it fell apart
at the end. lol

Glad it waited.

King Crimsn V.VIII in Nashville, August 2nd, 2008

I have been slow in producing a report from the Nashville warm up shows. Frankly, it's been difficult to put into words, either held back by lack of writing abilities ( talking about music is like whistling about chickens ) or by the overwhelming nature of the weekend in total which is hard to separate.

I've decided to concentrate on events that took place in Hillsboro Village.( Home of The Belcourt Theater, once home to The Grand Ole Opry )

The Belcourt holds 370 people, as I learned in line, two rows of folding chairs were placed in front of the front row of permanent seating.

Very nice theater which has a heavier film schedule then it does for live music events.

You could not tell this by the way they handled this event, very efficient, very friendly and professional.

I arrived in Hillsboro Village at approximately 3:45 p.m. on August 2nd with intentions

toward grabbing a bite before joining the queue but, as I noticed the line was forming

and, wishing to secure a premium vantage point, I opted to forgo nutritional considerations and join the parade.

It was a scorching day in the Music City, mid to high 90s. The humidity factor was such that I was dripping in short order, like one of our favorite musicians at work.

You could wave a cup through the air and gain a glass of hot water for high tea. I soldiered through it.One of the highlights of attending such an event is meeting the other people who obviously share some interests, it makes passing the time under the bright blue sun bearable. ( okay, so the sun wasn't actually blue on this day.)

One nice fellow in my section of queue, poured himself a cup of flavoured water and handed me the rest, seeing as how I was losing internal moisture at a dangerous rate. Good people these Crimso fans. Others made bottled water runs and replenished the folks around them. I could not leave the line as I was, at this point, a solo act.

I knew our very own Tickledrop was going to be there but, though I haven't met her before, I decided that she wasn't in the line at this point.

Three young fellows who held the first three spots had, reportedly, been there since 9:00 a.m. Probably not necessary but, two had come all the way from Paris ( France, not Tennessee )and the other from Japan.

They can be seen in Sid Smith interview segments at DGM Live. Sid was working the line alternating between video and stills for website reports.

Yours truly is apparently on the cutting room floor somewhere. lol

I find it hard to speak in brilliant terms when a camera is suddenly pointed at me, not that I can speak in brilliant terms otherwise.

It was good to meet the Sid, he was friendly and funny and prepared with lots of prevalent interview questions.

There was quite a number of people who were there to see their first Crimson show ever, some were of the younger set, including our friends from Paris.

It gives me hope about the future of"difficult" music.

I am not exactly what you would consider an old timer in the court of the Crimson King, in fact, this would be my first time seeing Tony Levin with anyone.

Yes, ashamed to admit that, though I am.

My first Crimson experience would be the V.VI warm up shows for TCoL (2000) and TPtB warm ups (2001).

There were quite a few veterans of those shows present and I actually remembered seeing some of them there.

Adrian arrived and parked right in front of the venue in his sporty Chrysler Crossfire, grabbed his guitar and other gear from the trunk, chatted briefly with the crowd in his ever gracious and friendly manner and entered through the front door.

It was not long before T-Lev strolled up the street, waving and smiling.

Soon, they both came back out and wandered around the corner, presumably to Boscos, for whatever pre show "ritual" and relaxation.

Tickledrop arrived and joined me in line. It was great to finally meet her after being friends in this forum (reference to the Adrian Belew at Yahoo list ) for some time now.

What a vibrant, energetic, fun person to share part of this experience with.

The doors opened at about 7:10 p.m., the end of the wilting...thank goodness.

Entry was smooth, organized and swift, wrist band for age check, guest pass posted.

Tickledrop was at the concession counter while I eyed the merch...I turned and she was gone, therefore, we were separated in the first row by about 5 seats.

She, in front of Adrian, myself in front of Stickman and Gavin.

I was dangerously close to the stack, stage left, which delivered thunderous bass and drums but, I didn't mind.

I had a great view of Robert's perch. My rib cage was sufficiently rattled, good for the blood flow.

We were treated to pre-recorded soundscape, frankly, I miss the familiar Ken Latchney mix, I hope Adrian has possession of that.

The unseen announcer ( Biff ? ), reiterated the usual warnings regarding photos, cellcerts, etc. and it was time for The Beast.

A standing ovation greeted the Crim as they took the stage.

1. [drum duo]

Many people, I am certain, were anxious for the return of Tony Levin and were excited to see what the edition of Gavin Harrison would bring to the fold, as was I.

Fortunately, The Crim, was also aware of this and planned much space for Pat & Gavin to show their wares in the form of a single mind playing different parts.

Most "new" music of the weekend was delivered from the drum risers and that is how the show began.

Adrian, during these sections, sat stoic on his fancy stool, trying his best to not draw any attention away from what was going on behind him.

A masterful duo of percussive precision ripped through the frame of our existence,

at times sounding like a drumline field performance but with the Pat and Gavin signature so firmly attached.

Pat, as usual, had the digital duties but was at full steam on the genuine skin and cymbal barrage as well.

Gavin was just as amazing as everyone knew he would be and you would have thought he and Pat had been playing these pieces together for years.

Most bands I have seen with dual drum kits pretty much play the same thing from each kit but, these guys were together in their own worlds, in the same piece but, each taking their own respective strengths to dizzying heights.

and then...

2. ConstruKction Of Light

You would never know that Tony had not been a part of this recording and yet he put his own stamp on it at the same time, but, who would have expected less ?

3. Level Five

I noticed Adrian communicating with someone over my shoulder, without words.

It was Martha who was standing at the ready to deliver Adrian's "rock shoes".

Nope, not the familiar red ones, he must have worn those out. lol

Adrian paused the show for a shoe switch citing, "you can't do a rock show in brown shoes".

4. Neurotica

It was great to hear this one live.

5. Three of a Perfect Pair

I was singing the usual Tony part, although Tony was there but, I noticed the crowd was not.

6. Indiscipline

7. Frame By Frame

8. Dinosaur

9. One Time

Tickledrop was hoping for this one. (One Time)

10. Sex Sleep Eat Drink Dream

11. B'boom

12. Elephant Talk

"Pinocchio Fingers", or is that "Viagra Fingers" is back !!!

13. Red

14. [drum duo]

15. Thela Hun Ginjeet

16. The Talking Drum

17. Larks' Tongues In Aspic II


18. Sleepless

Another welcomed return.

19. VROOOM/Coda:

Marine 475

Adrian Belew: guitar, vocal

Robert Fripp: guitar

Tony Levin: bass, stick, vocal

Pat Masteletto: drums, percussion, electronic percussion

Gavin Harrison: drums, percussion

The band set out to level the place and delivered.

The addition of Gavin working in concert with Pat, added a fresh coat of paint to the material.

Adrian was his usual animated, smiling stagemaster of ceremonies.

There was a few minor bobbles here and there, expected in warm up shows, that's what makes them special.

In fact, that's what makes Crim, Crim.

Occasionally, Tony didn't show up for a background vocal, he was so into his playing.

Adrian would give him a sideways glance like "where were you?", but, with a knowing grin.

That familiar grin.

Robert, had a few bobbles of his own but nothing major.

He had a permanent grin himself for the entire night.

Another review I read said that the clams prevented the music from ever taking flight, I must adamantly disagree with this assessment, they were in full flight.

I didn't hear anyone after the show that felt differently then I did about that.

Adrian was in his usual, awesome vocal form.

I did notice that he approached the high parts in Frame by Frame a little carefully the first time around but he went for it and, nailed it, when it rolled by the second round.

He played his silver Fly for the weekend with the tangerine/orange Fly at the ready for just in case.

I believe, if I am not mistaken, this was the coming out party for Adrian's new guitars in a Crimson setting.

They passed the audition with *Fly*ing colors.

The fellow to my right was quicker on the trigger and asked Tony for his set list.

I saw that in the bottom right corner it had a message which stated, paraphrased: If you stole this set list at a performance by King Crimson, please go to the lobby and purchase some merchandise. I wonder who's idea that was ? :-)

I got a set list for night two in the green room , which did not have this notice on it, In fact, I think Tony is holding the copy that I have in one of his photos.

But... night two is another story...The crowd had it's share of crossover fans from the Porcupine Tree camp, probably mutual fans, as evidenced by the T-shirt mix.

12th & Porter warm up T-shirts were also represented in the yellow and black versions.

Sid told me that he is jealous of those who attended those shows and that the audio from them is slated, at some point, for official release via download, it's just a matter of too much material and not enough time.

Merch, merch, merch...Lot's of stuff available at the mercantile, on night one I snagged the official tour T featuring art by P.J. Crook and the tour dates listed on the reverse.

I also picked up the "40th Anniversary Tour Box" which is audio only in a DVD case featuring a collection of snippets from over the years, a few gems included.

I realized later that the fellow who sold me my goods is the same fellow who sold me my goods at Porcupine Tree in Asheville, NC last fall.

At the end of both evenings, posters for the show(s) were handed out freely, on nice heavy stock with "SOLD OUT !!!"in bold red.

Being a bit on the hungry side, Tickledrop and meself wandered around the corner to Bosco's after hanging around outside The Belcourt for a bit.

We were seated right next to a group of tables put together for Adrian, Tony and respective families and crew types.

Adrian came over and joined us for some brief chat, that put a nice cap on the evening.

The food was good too.

I had black bean & goat cheese tamales. Yummmm.....

I made my way back to Franklin, noticing that my brakes were making a terrible metal to metal sound, I turned up the stereo, problem solved.

It was a wonderful first evening and I would say that King Crimson is off to a grand start for this new, albeit short, tour.

Friday, August 1, 2008

On the Road

Jeff Coffin

I'm heading off to NashVegas for to visitate with my Sister and family.

Tonight we will attend a concert under the stars featuring Jazz artist

Annie Sellick with special guest Jeff Coffin of Bela Fleck & The Flecktones.

I am very much looking forward to both the visiting

and the music.

Then on Saturday evening...

And Sunday...

Robert Fripp

Adrian Belew

Pat Mastelotto ( by Mark Colman )

Gavin Harrison of Porcupine Tree