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Who am I?

You can look at my home page for more information, but the short answer is that I'm a dilettante who likes thinking about a variety of subjects. I like to think of myself as a systems-level thinker, more concerned with the big picture than with the details. Current interests include politics, community formation, and social interface design. Plus books, of course.

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Sun, 06 Mar 2005

The Rebirth Brass Band
Last week a friend of mine from ultimate frisbee emailed some folks to ask if we wanted to see a show on Friday. A friend of his had been at this club the previous week, bummed a cigarette from an employee and asked him "If I only came to one show next month, what should it be?" The guy recommended the Rebirth Brass Band. With a recommendation like that, how could I not go? Okay, I checked out a few of their tracks on their site first, but then I said I was in.

It was a really fun evening. A couple of us met for dinner and beer beforehand at Fly on Divisadero, which was pretty good. It was crowded, but decent food. And I ran into an ex-co-worker of mine from Signature, which was pretty odd. We hung out there for a bit, and then headed over to the show.

The band was pretty darn good. Imagine a straight up New Orleans jazz brass band, like the Preservation Hall Jazz Band. Now make them younger, way funkier, more modern, and louder. That's what the Rebirth Brass Band was like. Lots of fun, fun bass line provided by the tuba and bass drum, good beat, you could dance to it.

The club employee was right - the show sold out a day early, and the club was packed, so this was definitely a popular show. It was a little loud, though. Yes, I'm old. But, y'know, from experience, I know that a single unamplified trumpet can easily fill a symphony hall and upstage a two hundred person chorus. So three trumpets and two trombones, at full blast, blowing straight into their individual microphones for amplification, in a relatively small club, was deafening. My ears were ringing for a couple hours afterwards. But the music was good, and it was fun to hang out with some friends from ultimate (one of them lived across the street from the club, so we had shots there before the show), even though I stayed out way past my bedtime, since the show didn't end til after 1:30. Since I'd been over at Christy's for dinner the two nights before that, it was a full week of socializing for me!

More blog updates when I get a chance. With my parents in town, I'm not left with enough downtime to get bored enough to blog :)

posted at: 15:08 by Eric Nehrlich | path: /journal/events | permanent link to this entry | Comment on livejournal

King Rat, by China Mieville
I remembered China Mieville's name from Aneel's book page, so when I stopped by the library, I looked him up, and this was the one book by him that they had. It's somewhat in the same vein as Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere, describing a London with more dimensions than most of us ever get to see, or the urban fantasies of Charles de Lint. The cover description plays up the importance of drum and bass techno music to the story, but I think that's just to draw in the hip kids. I thought it was okay. The writing is gorgeous in spots, but the narrative seemed to kind of wander without a clear idea of where it was heading at times. It was okay. I'm happy I got it from the library.

posted at: 14:51 by Eric Nehrlich | path: /books/fiction/scifi | permanent link to this entry | Comment on livejournal