Hey, guys! Hope everyone had a good weekend. Mine was pretty good. We had a good Crack practice on Friday night. Sigmund brought over the sitar that he bought on his India trip, so I hooked up the pickup that I used for my banjo on it, and we jammed some sitar rock.We had some moments at Crack practice that got really strange, even by Crack standards, and the whole musical superstructure would teeter on the brink of chaotic disaster. Once or twice we crashed and burned, but you have to expect these things when you're trying to fit things together that don't necessarily want anything to do with each other.
Saturday I went and saw Pineapple Express with Team Steans and Griego (pretty good, but not superawesome). After the movie we didn't do much. Hung out with Griego, watched the Olympics and some other random TV stuff, played some XBox. Sunday morning I got up and went and had brunch with my folks over at The Iron Cactus. I really have always thought of the Iron Cactus as a bar and had pretty much forgotten that they even had food, but the brunch was really surprisingly good (we had tried to go to the brunch at Moonshine, but there was about a 45 minute wait. Well, I've eaten the brunch at Moonshine before, and it's good, but the brunch at the Iron Cactus was probably just as good, and the place was only half full, and only a couple of blocks away from Moonshine). Anyway, good to see Mom and Dad and good food as well. Sunday evening I had Mono Ensemble rehearsal and rocked out pretty hard with those guys (All five of us were there. Eric played exclusively keyboard, which is cool because it changes the sound of a lot of our songs, and we did some improvising, jamming on different melodies and themes, which was really cool. Not to say we're on the same level, but there were some Medeski, Martin, and Wood-ish moments in there).
I also worked on my banjo playing this weekend. I think I have a lot of the chords down at this point, but I still have a long way to go in terms of finger picking technique. Anyway, still working on the banjo.
And just as things are finally beginning to look like they're settling down in Georgia (or maybe not), it looks like Pakistan is doing its own part to destablize world democracy. Pervez Musharraf is stepping down from his role as Pakistan's president. Musharraf may have some shady stuff in his past (i.e, coming to power through a bloodless coup, the happenstance assassination of one of his political rivals at what may have been the height of her political power, etc.), but he was fairly predicatable, and he always seemed willing to lend cooperation (or at least the appearance of cooperation) to the United States as it waged its "war on terror" against Al Qaeda, the Taliban, and other hardline Muslim fundamentalist groups that enjoyed quite a bit of sympathy within Musharraf's Pakistan (meaning, given the feelings of his consitituency, it wasn't always politically expedient, at least in the short term, for Musharraf to ally himself with the United States, but he has remained a relatively faithful ally of the U.S., nonetheless). Anyway, Musharraf may have had some faults, but apparently American leadership has felt fairly secure with Musharraf at the helm in Pakistan for a number of years (which means quite a bit when you're talking about a country that has its own nuclear weapons stockpile as well as elements of some hostile terrorist groups running around within its borders). I'm guessing that in some ways we should all be sort of sorry to see Musharraf go.
What else? Well, I probably screwed up by not getting tickets to go see David Byrne at the Paramount on the Thursday night before ACL Fest. It'll probably be a good show, but I just didn't think it would sell out so quickly. Anyone who has some tickets to it that they want to unload can feel free to drop me an email or a comment or something.
Well, I guess that's it for now.