Another photo of snow, as if it’s never fallen before

Click for even bigger snow.

Click for even bigger snow.

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A Report From Harold Taddy’s Variety Showcase (27 Feb 2015)

Harold Taddy puts on a great show. Tonight he brought a varied group of poets, musicians and dancers to the Bremen Town Ballroom in Millheim, PA. He also brought a crowd — the place with packed with attentive, appreciative folks who braved the single-digit temperatures to support local artists. Huzzah! for everyone involved.

A personal note: Last night I timed out my set, including the banter, and came out at 13 minutes (two minutes under the limit). Tonight I stuck in a bunch of jokes and went three minutes over, for the first time in my life. Embarrassing! My apologies to everyone who had to suffer through the super-sized set of poetry.

Regular readers know that the camera on my phone is horrible, and tonight I forgot my real camera. So here are a few bad photos of some of tonight’s performers. You can also listen to, or download, my poetry reading using the player above.

Laura Boswell played several beautiful classical guitar pieces.

Laura Boswell played several beautiful classical guitar pieces.

The Psychic Beat, Danny Brumbaugh's one-man band, was a heck of a lot of fun.

The Psychic Beat, Danny Brumbaugh’s one-man band, was a heck of a lot of fun.

Peter Buckland read poems that rely on his deep knowledge of central Pennsylvania.

Peter Buckland read poems that rely on his deep knowledge of central Pennsylvania.

Eli and Harold and trees.

Eli and Harold and trees.

Alyson Kate read poetry while Harold Taddy and Eli Bryne played soundscapes and songs.

Alyson Kate read poetry while Harold Taddy and Eli Bryne played soundscapes and songs.

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Record Of The Day: Me Myself I – Joan Armatrading

joan

Joan Armatrading + David Letterman’s band + The E Street Band = FUN.

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Thank you, Baby Jesus, for Ben Elton

eltonI’m probably going to tell this story incorrectly, but this is how I remember it:

When my friends Kevin and Jenn moved back from Scotland to the U.S. in the (early?) 90s, they brought with them a couple cassettes of Ben Elton’s stand-up comedy. I’d never heard of Ben Elton, although I had heard of Blackadder and The Young Ones, two British comedy shows for which he’d written.

These two cassettes, Motormouth and Motorvation, were a revelation. I was already a big fan of stand-up, but I’d never listened to any British comics, and Ben Elton’s left-wing humor was right up my alley. I wore the cassettes out listening to them, memorizing every line.

Sadly, I lost the cassettes in a move, and by the time I looked to order them again, it was very hard to get either album in the U.S. A couple weeks ago, nearly 20 years after losing the originals, I found a vinyl copy of Motormouth online at Vinyl Tap. It arrived in the mail today. I’m listening to it right now. It’s just as funny as I remembered, and I have a huge smile plastered across my face.

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POEM: target practice

targetpractice

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Record Of The Day: Northern Lights Southern Cross – The Band

band

The Band is one of my favorite bands. Even so, I’d never heard this album all the way through until tonight. I’d heard live versions of some of its songs — “Ophelia” and “It Makes No Difference” are on the The Last Waltz — but never the original record. On first listen, the production is a little keyboard-heavy in some spots, but overall it’s a solid record with lots of great singing.

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