Happy Valentine’s Day, err’budd… I mean Groundhog day, ummm, I mean Polar Plunge day, or Solar Flare? Bipolar Hair day. Fred Astaire; Stroller Chair, everywhere. Yes, I mean that from the depths of my heart, top and bottom. So here’s a recap of my year. Much more in depth than the algorithm Facebook decided to share, although I did like the pictures they chose. But it definitely did not tell a complete “story.”
Another circle around the sun. Beauty before me, beauty behind me. Beauty under my feet, so I walk lightly, deliberately and with great care.
Winter NAMM. I didn’t go this year. Enough said. I’ll miss the new technology; I’m kind of take-it-or-leave-it with being surrounded by so many petentious snobs and so few peers and mentors who truly are the real deal…
The year mostly begins with my song “Frybread” getting picked up to be the theme song of a TV pilot. I got paid a little bit of money and if the show ends up seeing light of day (the percentages on these things are rather daunting…) I’ll see a bunch more and be able to say “you knew me when,” or something. Or something.
Anniversary of Ant Hamlin getting murdered in cold blood in front of New York Amtrak and then his body was dumped near Shewville Road out in North Stoningtonish, Prestonish, Grotonish. Yuck. I’m friends with his ex and many other friends of his and this hurt my feelings a lot. Facebook got this one right and collected up 4 pix of the ceremonies including a rose I kept on my dashboard until early summer and brought over to bury about where his body had been found.
27jan Pete Seeger died. I don’t even know where to start writing about that. I’ll wait for clearer words and a different venue to write that. I could go long! One of the best tributes was written by his friend David Amram who was with him the moment he died.
He wrote this just a day and a half ago, but almost a full year after Pete’s passing. Profound!
What else can I say about “Desiree Bassett sits in with Foghat at the Wolf Den,” but wow, just wow.
Bob Dylan did a car ad for the Superbowl and everyone gave him a hard time but me it seems. I must say it was a great ad.
Bob Dylan is a master creative, a creative genius and a genius musician, what more can I say. Does anyone out there feel just a little less venomous toward Mr. Dylan a full year out now? I sure do appreciate the guy.
4april can be summed up academically this way. So this week I watched Frozen three times and DrumLine four times. Yay!
In fact I’ll give you two perspectives of the same day back to back. Two different substitute teachers co-teaching the same students.
“I watched Frozen 3X & DrumLine 4X. 2day I’ll teach Quantum Theory & Linear Equations 2 Theater majors. Neat!” — Marco Frucht
“Any day can turn around: I am now getting paid to watch Drumline, speak Spanish, and have my hair braided by middle schoolers #love” — Carolyn Luby
I released a fully remastered and engineered cut of my EP “Poems For Roberta Blackgoat” in April too. You’ll remember it as the one I printed 150 copies of to give away at my Indian Summer Music Festival performance in Milwaukee last year. I had so much fun giving it away to not just radio stations and industry bigwigs but anyone I met who was considering whether they could afford the asking price on my commercial CD. “Here, have this free even if you can’t get my commercial CD,” I’d say, maybe you’ll get it some other day at iTunes or Amazon, right? I think I sold a total of 5 rekkids and gave away more than a hundred. Yay! Sometimes cash flow is not only less important than what else is going on, but not important at all.
No matter what else happens every April 12, this day will always be the time I was was beaten to within a 3-minute blackout of my life in Washington DC back in 2003. I was telling someone just the other day that one of the last big purchase items I got for myself from my out-of-court settlement was a $1500 memory foam bed. I have no regrets with that, and I joke that I’m actually thankful I was a victim of police brutality since I can sleep so well now.
2may the late Link Wray’s birthday.
Stevie Wonder got my friend Dylan Jenet Collins signed. That was my high point for the month of March I think. Just rooting for that young Native American rockstar!
10 may New London Konetiuk’s 4th annual Youth Talent Show. I’m their instrumental talent coach. Some amazing moments that day. No, many amazing moments that day!
7june or so? Whalie Awards. Nominated for 2 or 3, win nothing. I will never win an award in New London because of people like, well I won’t name them there are 5 or 6 of them and they are very corrupt, very small minded and very self-centered not to mention big fishes in the littlest pond ever. Oh well, who cares. I don’t do this stuff for awards — nominations just tell me someone was thinking about me and makes my nose itch so I’m happy about that!
16june or so. I go to Hank’s Dairy Bar to see Noelle Smith. An amazing singer/songwriter who moved to North Carolina. Connecticut’s loss and America’s gain for sure.
21june I sing some of my zaniest renditions of my even crazier songs at the bonfire of a guy named Andrew and his wonderful family. Soooooo fun. I hope we do that again 3 or 400 more times next summer!
23june I get accepted to Sacred Heart on a full ride scholarship from the VocRehab section of the Veterans Administration. I should probably say that in allcaps. I GOT ACCEPTED TO SACRED HEART FOR GRAD SCHOOL! Wait, I should type it in allcaps but spaced out old gutenberg style, I’m just THAT excited about it.
I G O T A C C E P T E D T O S A C R E D H E A R T F O R G R A D S C H O O L !
Yeah, that was a highpoint in my year, perhaps my decade. I got rejected by UNH because they didn’t like my essay, and was feeling pretty terrible about that when the letter from SHU came in and patched it all up and made it better than better. Heck, I’ll say it, UNH is a horrible school anyhow. Their loss
22junish Gabriel Ayala plays the National Anthem on a classical guitar at an Arizona Diamondbacks game. You could hear a pin drop! Wow.
26jun or so I drop off a single flower at the site where the murdered Ant Hamlin’s body had been dumped after someone killed him outside of Amtrak in downtown New London. His murder just like Mr. Spicer’s up the road from me here in groton remain unsolved from so long ago. Not among New London, Groton, Waterford submarine-capitol-of-the-world’s proudest moments, to be sure.
4th of July I publish Marc Frucht’s American Songbag.
12july my first A as a grad student. My bachelors degree did not even closely resemble these grades.
Jana’s movie starring alongside Lorenzo Lamas hits Walmart stores around the country. About the same time last year or so she managed to get onto Sony RED which my friend Tony helped start back in the day, and they agreed to some kind of distribution for her newest CD but when you walked into Walmart and BestBuy you had the clerk telling you it wasn’t present but you can order it. This time around I was able to walk right in the store and actual buy a copy of the DVD right on premises. Sooooo happy for Jana to be getting her artwork out there like that. She’s been working so hard in these industries!
Pauline Whitesinger dies. She was Roberta Blackgoats next door neighbor. (and by next door I mean half a mile down a fairly well graded dirt road) In the early 90’s I walked back and forth between those two house at least 5 dozen times. A couple times pickup trucks have pulled up and given me a ride half way there because a snowstorm had just begun that might have killed me before I got there. One time it was Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) cops that saved my life.
18aug – I sort of “ambush” the Governor GuerillaJournalist-Style at one of his openhouse town meeting forums in a coffeeshop to request that he bring gas prices down in southeastern CT since wages are so much lower in the parts of CT where gas prices are artifically low but wages are so much higher. I’ll never know if he brought the prices down two weeks later or if they did that on their own but it sure made some good press.
26aug my Making Wampum video gets to the 6000 hits mark which I’m happy about but I get a little suspicious. It seemed to climb really fast a couple days in a row. Looking for why the spike hit I discover that for one year this video had been included in an eBook by one of the CommonCore corporations outfitting schools with material they claim is better than what the schools are already using. Sort of a backhanded curriculum change without any reflection or deliberation on the school district’s part. Anyhew, state of New York school systems were using my homemade music Video as supplemental material to teach grade schoolers about NDN crafts in centuries past. I’m flattered and aggravated at the same time, to say the least.
9sep I find out that the makers of Duke Nukem video game have been using the .MID file of my song “Hey Mon” for years in their video games. They acquired it in a very “pirate” way from their own developers so I’ll never see a single penny from it, but I don’t care. I’m just happy to be able to say you can hear a melody that I wrote in some of the most popular singlepersonshooter games to ever hit computers prior to Grand Theft Auto and Mortal Combat and stuff, right? Ah, there’s a claim to fame I might not even tell too many people about, certainly not anyone under age 11 or so, yikes.
My coversong of the Violent Femmes’ coversong of Marc Bolan’s “Children Of The Revolution” gets shown for an entire month at a listening station in an art gallery as part of an installation at a national gallery in Sharjah, UAE. You get to hear my song in between ones by Joey Ramone and Aldous Huxley! I use an exclamation point there because this is way more exciting than it sounds.
30oct 4 years ago this day 6 teenagers killed my friend Matt Chew. That’s why I became a substitute teacher and that’s why I became an instrumental talent coach, to show young people all over my county that they can write a song, or sing along, or dance and shout or let it all hang out, instead of pulling a drive by or a beat down, right? Yupper and this led to the annual youth talent show that brings so much beauty out of and into New London!
9november I discover someone’s selling a used copy of my SOFFTY FASNFFTOF CD for almost 60 dollars online. I don’t know for sure yet but I think it’s a drop-shipper who hasn’t even purchased it yet but knows s/he can get it off of CDBaby anytime he needs to. If I ever see a penny from that transaction it will only be something like four-dollars-and-fifty-cents and there’s almost nothing I can do about it. This “recording industry” is dying a slow torturous twisted and sordid death and it’s killing off so many souls in the process. I refuse to care. I’m just flattered someone thought enough of my musical work to include it in his/her diabolical plans to take over his or her tiniest part of his world.
Janice Marie Johnson closes out the Nammys this year. I wasn’t able to go this year but was able to see the thing livestreamed on the web. Great stuff. My friends Clayson and Jeneda performed and got an award, so did the Plateros. Very happy for them. They get to tour as the Plateros now and also as part of the band Indigenous.
8oct. Educator Diane Ravitch speaks at Quinipiac college. That was major!
HIGH POINT OF MY YEAR:
And sometime in early November I was the sole witness to a Kindergartner speaking for the first time. I won’t write much about it, but he was labelled with a nonverbal learning disability and was on watch for either Selective Mutism or full Mutism and I was supposed to lead in structured play and readalongs and make notes if I see him do even so much as a grunt or a snortle. Well since I’m not like your usual average “garden variety” substitute teacher I brought a guitar and played him some flamenco music three days in a row and sang to him a capella occasionally in between all the structured play. He had a favorite book called “Five Little Monkeys,” that I could read to him and point at pictures. I impovised my own little ditty to sing to him as the introduction of this book and then I’d ask if he wants to read it with me. The third day I did this he pointed at it and said, “Monk.” I nearly jumped out of my skin! “Did you just say “monkeys?” I asked him. He just puffed out his chest and grinned and said nothing else. So I read it to him and that’s all I’m going to say about that. It really was one of the “most high” moments I’ve experienced in 5 or 6 years, not just this past year!
13ish November my friend Frank Waln makes it onto MTV with a major project he’d been working diligently on. I’m amazed that MTV allowed such monumental ideas to be shared in one movie short. Not since Little Steven led the Sun City campaign, or maybe with “We Are The World” did that much “movement” happen!
— Tinsel Korey (@tinselkorey) November 14, 2014
Other November highpoints? Sihasin getting a NAMMY, Jones Benally getting a lifetime achievement award from the Heard Museum.
Please close the School of Americas no matter what name they’re giving WesternHemisphereInstituteForSecurityCooperation it’s still the School of Assassins. I’m embarrassed to be a patriotic American citizen having served in the US army signal corps with each new day that our tax dollars pay for us training paramilitary death squads like that. Look it up.
F I N A L E X A M S
(Translated from the Greco Roman to the English that means, “stress.”
2dec starts off the month AND THE FOLLOWING YEAR with auditions for the 5th annual New London Youth Talent Show coming up 13march (pi day by the way)
13dec Franc Gramz releases a CD to a fully sold out show at Hanafins Pub. I saw Dio Hanafin and his wife at a local Homegoods/Hardware store a few days later and he told me it was one of the best shows of his entire year, with his wife nodding in agreement the whole time.
Sometime between Thanksgiving and NewYears I found out online thanks to BlackBoard educational webapp that I managed to get 3 gradschool As and a B- at America’s most unaffordable college. My masters degree candidacy is more difficult, more stressful and rigorous all the while more fulfilling than I could have ever imagined it to be.
26dec My friend Tanya Tagac gets declared Canada’s best artist for 2014. Wow.
31dec – Noon. Save for eating dinner and other NYE stuff the very last thing I did this year was pretty neat. Late morning I get a call from DJ Dot who is the “Gramma” in Gramma’s attic. She’s had a last minute cancellation on her weekly TV show and can I come on and entertain TVland in one of those “Taped-Live” settings. Sure, when? Oh, a couple hours. I literally went home, got three guitars, tuned them up once quickly and scoured my room for several set-lists and cheat sheets because I knew I wouldn’t even have time to rehearse at all. I’ll stick to songs I know well. Yeah right. How did that work out for you? I had to cover for so many mistakes with humor that this show went from loose to fun to downright zany in less than 35 seconds. I hope that translates well to the upcoming show and isn’t too embarrassing for you. Or me!
Consequently, I had more fun entertaining on this show than I’ve had in any venue for years! The show airs in a few weeks and then I can start sharing movie shorts from it on vimeo or liveleak or something. Yay!
Happy GNU Year!
aka Marco Capelli
e&p atizine since 1988
Singer/Songwriter since well, since I’ve been singering and songwritering.
PS: THIS JUST IN!! 2015 begins with my dear friend Eric Lichter nominated for a New England Music Award as Producer Of The Year. Eric owns and operates Dirt Floor Recording Studio which is almost entirely an analog environment. If you want an easy comparison of just how wonderful analog equipment can sound with the right producer placing mics and engineering you, you can listen to his three productions on my commercial CD and then contrast them against most of the others.
Here are two to compare: