The Backbeat Has Moved

I have officially re-launched my blog. I will keep this one around for the archives only. So please, visit the new one and put it on your RSS Feed, Reader, etc. Tell your family, tell your friends, tell your enemies. Hope to see you all there:

THE BACKBEAT

Posted at at 10:04 AM on Tuesday, November 25, 2008 by Posted by Lyman | 78 comments   | Filed under:

The End

Finally I can honestly say I'm not a completely blind Obama-supporter. As I'm sure you all have heard Colin Powell endorsed Obama over the weekend expressing some of the same concerns about McCain's candidacy I expressed a couple of posts ago although he did it much more eloquently than I ever could. Powell's always been a guy I've respected and this endorsement has brought him some heat so I have no reason to believe this was politically motivated. And when the former Republican Secretary of Defense says the Ayers situation is a non-issue, its time to drop it. Check it out if you haven't.


And with that I'm done with politics and The Backbeat for a while. I'm voting absentee this year, I'm filling out and mailing my ballot today. My small part of the democratic process will be realized for this election so there won't be much use in me talking about it anymore.

This blog has become something I never intended it to be. I'm afraid I am portraying myself in a way that makes it much too easy for readers to jump to conclusions about my opinions and my world view. I'm quite lucky to have an interesting career that allows me to travel quite a bit and I wanted a blog to share that with family and friends both immediate and casual. In these important political times I began posting some of my opinions about political issues I felt passionately about as this was my blog about me and my life, but perhaps that was selfish of me. I guess nothing that is so freely available to the public can simply be an inward personal expression. We have had many heated debates as a result but more often then not there was an ugly tone that took over. I've been accused of having a big ego, one who would celebrate if our country fell, it's been insinuated that I am communist, that I support a totalitarian fascist that would strip our country of the liberties it was founded on ... its one thing to challenge someone's opinion, its another to provide unsolicited sarcastic and belittling remarks. But I'm not innocent of resorting to argument and insult as opposed to insightful debate either. I've had a lot of online discussions about the election on other sites recently; in particular, Facebook and a Colts Fansite that I frequent (of all the places!) and they've all been more respectful then what a few of the discussions here have dissolved in to. In some respects it makes sense that we would be more respectful to people we don't know as opposed to friends and acquaintances and in other respects it makes no sense at all.

Two things recently occurred that caused me to re-think the way I run my own blog. First a friend of mine emailed me their opinions about my first Sarah Palin post because they were too afraid of being attacked in the Comments section here. Attacked! I promise, I'm not making this up! Secondly, on another blog I simply asked a question about a sensitive topic (it was nothing more than a question, I know what a smartass I can be and I was very careful not to reflect that) and was immediately told I was trying to start crap and opinions that I hadn't even expressed were called in to question.

We complain so much about the polarizing state of American politics, how the two-party system is too divisive but we're guilty of doing the exact same thing: if you support Obama then you're pro-abortion, if you support gun control then you're communist, if you're pro-choice then you're anti-death-penalty, if you support government regulation then you're socialist, etc. None of those things are mutually exclusive. But I don't want to have to explain my entire ideology every time I show enthusiasm for a candidate or an issue important to me.

PLEASE UNDERSTAND THIS! I'm not trying to be self-righteous or passive-aggressive. I've spent a lot of time in chat rooms, message boards, social networking sites, and blogs over the past seven years (when I got my first PC), I know how posts like this can come across. I'm just going to step aside for a minute. The timing is good, I leave soon for NYC where I'll play the first week of the Carlyle with Mistah Tyrell along with some other dates. When I come back the election will be long over and hopefully so will all of the divisive discussions and heightened emotions.

I'm going to leave the comments section open for this post because you might think I'm making an accusation about you and I want to give you the opportunity to tell me to go to hell if you like, I'm not going to comment back. Just know that I am not trying to refer to any specific instance or absolve myself of fueling the fires.

Love, Peace, and Chicken Grease. Keep it funky, yo!

Posted at at 1:48 PM on Thursday, October 23, 2008 by Posted by Lyman | 14 comments   | Filed under:

Wow

What a beating. The Colts' football play sunk to a new low yesterday, I could hardly believe it. Luckily I had the Colin Powell endorsement and a Boston loss to soften what otherwise would've been an awful day.

EDIT
And if you didn't know, Ball State University is ranked #20 in both the BCS and AP polls. Go Cardinals! Now if only I could watch a game somehow.

Posted at at 8:28 AM on Monday, October 20, 2008 by Posted by Lyman | 1 comments   | Filed under:

Sleep ...

... has been a rare thing for me the past couple of weeks. Good sleep anyway. It seems like every night I have a gig or something to do and I don't get to bad until 1 or 2. The baby is up at 6 regardless. I get up and I manage to get a nap in during the day usually but its just not the same as getting a good night of uninterrupted sleep. I don't know what I can do about it. Getting a bigger house certainly isn't an option these days! The good thing is I have been busy playing music and seeing friends which is exactly what I want to be doing since I'm not on the road.

Well, my Dodgers' unexpected run through the playoffs finally ended. They started the series with the Phillies playing some good ball but by the end of it Manny was the only guy who could get a hit. Its disappointing they didn't play very well the final two games but they made a lot further then anyone expected. Unfortunately its going to take a miracle to keep Manny in L.A. as somebody is going to throw a $100 million contract at him and the Dodgers have such a big payroll already. We'll see what happens.

Thankfully Oct/Nov are the best months for sports; NFL, college football, and the beginning of basketball season.

Oh, the fires are all out here in L.A. In the end only a few homes were destroyed and a couple of fatalities (one a transient, the other a car-wreck caused by confusion from the smoke). It could've been a lost worse, hopefully the warm wind is done with and we can proceed with Fall.

Posted at at 1:13 AM on Saturday, October 18, 2008 by Posted by Lyman | 0 comments   | Filed under:

Why is it ...

... that McPalin continues the mud-slinging?

Why would any voter be swayed by such nonsense?

Posted at at 2:26 PM on Tuesday, October 14, 2008 by Posted by Lyman | 31 comments   | Filed under:

In The Clear

All is good. The fire is by no means contained and is still dangerous but it has shifted westward and we are no longer in its path. Murphy and I returned a few minutes ago, the air is still smokey but besides that there are no problems.

Thanks for the concern everyone.

Posted at at 3:15 PM on Monday, October 13, 2008 by Posted by Lyman | 0 comments   | Filed under:

Fire

Yesterday morning I woke up early and could not get back to sleep. My nose was stuffy and running, I was sneezing, it was weird. We had been to a Pumpkin Patch the night before so I chalked it up to smoke in my hair from the wood fires then. After Carrie walked the dog she told me there was ash in the air and after some poking around online we discovered there was a brush fire in the Angeles National Forest northeast of us. The air was smoky but we're kind of used to that kind of thing around this time of year. We went about our day and had a fantastic Sunday; Milo and Carrie went to the zoo, I watched football (Colts FINALLY looking good!), we took a nap, the Dodgers won, we had a really fun dinner with some friends, and an early bedtime.

When we woke up this morning the sky was black to the north of us. The smoke was heavy and the wind was really blowing hard. We turned on the TV and learned the fire had moved south, was moving south quickly, and the air was too windy for firefighters to drop water on it or see the fire line with any effectiveness. Carrie went to work, Milo went to his babysitters, and I wasted no time. There was no official evacuation called for our neighborhood but seriously, why wait? I gathered up some important belongings and the dog and made my way to my office studio which is out of harm's way.

At the moment I'm at a Starbuck's waiting it out. Moments ago the neighborhood directly north to us was evacuated and I wouldn't be surprised if ours is evacuated soon. Poor Murphy is going nuts (dogs have a sixth sense for this kind of thing of course).

We're all safe, no reason to worry ... but I don't want our house to burn down! I really don't think that is going to happen as we live around a hell of a lot of concrete but its still something you think about. If anyone knows a rain dance, rain mojo, or all-around good vibes, send them our way.

UPDATE
AP link

Posted at at 8:42 AM on by Posted by Lyman | 308 comments   | Filed under:

Music

Last night my favorite indie band Margot and the Nuclear So and So's played at legendary L.A. club The Troubadour and yours truly was in attendance. These guys are quite possibly the best band ever to come out of Indianapolis. I've written about them before, they really are brilliant (think hard-rock Ryan Adams meets Broken Social Scene if that means anything to you). I know their trumpet player from Ball State, it was great hanging with him and great seeing the show.

I've been waiting for their new record Animal! for a while now, it was released yesterday but for some odd reason it was only released on Vinyl. Now, I appreciate a record being released on wax for classic and nostalgic reasons but you can't even download it from Amazon or iTunes. I'm afraid they might have out-cooled themselves. So I don't have the new record as my turntable is fried and needs to be replaced and I don't have anything to play it on at the moment. Luckily they also released a CD titled Not Animal comprised of other songs from the same recording sessions, I downloaded that yesterday and its got some good stuff on it but I feel like I'm missing out. Its too bad.

I've been buying a lot of music lately, more than usual. Too much as I'm not digesting everything like I should. In the past couple of weeks:

Murs Murs for President
Miles Davis The Man With The Horn
Helmet Meantime
Nick Drake Five Leaves Left
TV on the Radio Dear Science
Living Legends The Gathering
Fleet Foxes Fleet Foxes
William Parker Corn Meal Dance
Various Nigeria Rock Special: Pshychedelic, Afro-Rock, and Fuzz Funk in 1970's Nigeria
Immortal Technique Revolutionary Vol. 2
She and Him Volume One

That's not to mention the Wave Mechanics Union and Margot records that I blogged about. Look at that list. Does anybody know half of these records? Damn, I'm a nerd ...

Posted at at 8:35 AM on Wednesday, October 08, 2008 by Posted by Lyman | 5 comments   | Filed under: