Muffin Bottoms [not] Just another WordPress weblog


Almost Famous – A Movie and a Musical and a Way to Be.

Marco Frucht pictured here with Cameron Crowe at Blue Gene’s Pub, National Theater Institute, Waterford, Conn. 18nov23

Corny joke alert:

— So yesterday I met Cameron Crowe
— Oh I know that name, what’s he famous for?
— Almost Famous
— Oh, what’s he almost famous for?

One morning I was telling a 7th grade class about how I used to sell cassettes of my music out of a van while busking on street corners all over the U.S. I found an old 4-track cassette tape the other day with early masters, and a girl raises her hand and says, “what’s a cassette tape?” And a boy goes, “Oh my dad has those, it’s like a VHS tape with the two little spinners but they’re smaller,” and she asks “what’s a VHS tape?” Not picking on her. I polled the class right away and there were only two other children besides that boy and myself. Everyone else had no idea what either of those two old pieces of technology are/were.

Last week Cameron Crowe and Tom Kitt were here at the O’Neill reworking their B’way production of Cameron’s movie “Almost Famous.”

It was so neat to meet Cameron and see Tom again. He were here a few years ago workshoping his play “Superhero.”

Even more neat was seeing some of their work as a staged reading with Equity actors and production crew. I have a good feeling about this play and it’s journey back to Broadway and everywhere else it will go. I sure do hope it gets licensed for High School productions and then Little Steven’s group can include it in curriculum, right?


I’m staying with Spotify, but here go some of my thoughts.

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 7:38 am

OK so while we’re having hot discussions about Spotify, let me say a few things this way: 

If you refuse to listen to me over at Spotify (I totally understand by the way. They only pay me .003 of a penny each time you stream a song there, that’s nearly criminal) you can get my songs completely free many places. I make a tiny bit of money at some of these when you listen for free, and other places I get nothing, but racking up “hits” helps me feel heard, to be sure.


are some good places to start. 

Some of my electronica work is over at

And if you want to actually buy some of my songs, you can still go to amazon or itunes. When you listen to snippets before buying there I get a tiny bit too. Perhaps more than at spotify, I’m not actually sure. I haven’t checked lately. 

And frankly, the best place to listen to my songs where I’ll recover many pennies instead of .003 of a penny is over at TikTok. 

Yes, the place mainly driven by teenagers and preteens dancing the Carlton, Orange Justice and the Jerk. Maybe if we’re lucky they’ll start reviving the Locomotion, Electric Boogaloo, Charleston and Jitterbug or something right? 

I bumped into the whole tiktok thing when I didn’t even have a username and password there because one month I was looking over my revenue stream and saw that I made 7 cents for about 10 streams of my Frybread, Swedish FolkSong and Follow the Drinking Gourd. When people choose to use a song of mine in one of their 15 second videos, then the people watching the video hear the song, and some extra “crumbs” are sent our way. I had to ask around, but quickly found out that when I printed my first commercial CDs and opted for open distribution of digital publications too, that included places like TikTok, Deezer, Napster, etc.

That’s like 3/4’s of a cent per stream. Something like 250% more revenue than Spotify gives. Yikes! 

Yes, tiny but it all adds up eventually right? 

So that brings me to my next point. I’m fine with Joni Mitchell and Nils Lofgren joining others in turning their back on Spotify corporation. They’re big and sacrificing hundreds of dollars when they’re making low millions or high hundreds of thousands of dollars a year is just a little pinch compared to what us smalltime indy artists would face if we joined such a boycott, buynot or cancelban, right? 

So for the mean time, I’m staying at Spotify just like I’m staying everywhere else. I’m actually hoping this current fiasco will widen to a more discerning eye on each and every place there’s injustice in the Music Industry. Because it really isn’t fair. And Spotify is just one of the perps. 

I remember when Spotify first began and artists all over Europe and Asia were making their living honestly by giving people links to their Spotify pages.

There was about a one-year period where Spotify was blocked in the United States until the major labels could figure out how they could participate without going bankrupt. Well did these labels even think about how to keep all the rest of us from heading for bankruptcy while we waited? While we watched all the other streaming sights go down and down to match what Spotify was starting to do as it entered the EEUU market? Ouch. I remember that well. No one except the Taylor Swifts, Jason Aldeans, Neil Youngs of the world could figure out a way to make more than say 10 dollars a month or 10 dollars every three months out of that part of the game. 

So when Taylor Swift had a big fight with Spotify over her collection, I thought, “ooh, maybe that will benefit all the rest of us too.” 

It didn’t. 

And now I think the same thing out loud about today’s growing fiasco, “ooh, maybe…” 

And maybe it will, or maybe it won’t. Remains to be seen. So far Neil Young has accomplished one major change over at Spotifylandia. They’re now going to put disclaimers on hate radio from the right AND the left. That’s a start. 

Now one rhetorical question I’ll have to ask. 

Can they keep paying someone like Joe Rogan a 100M a year when they lose 2B a month? or 2B a week? Yikes. 

Of course after tightening their belts, and then seeking out all the other wide margins they can exploit around the world, maybe they’ll throw an extra penny or 3 to some of the rest of us “little guys,” right? 

A guy can dream. 


ZOMBIE JAMBOREE: An Ethnomusicologist’s Reflection on that Frito-Lay Superbowl Thing Last Night.

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We’ve come a long way from Paula Abdul’s choreography, and Janet Jackson’s for that matter; but where to? Ouch. I don’t think I like where we’ve gone to. 
All women, men and children throughout the entire 14 minutes and 20 seconds looked 100% possessed. And you know what other-peoples’ world ethicities I have to compare them to? There is no other group I can find to compare this with.  But North Korea. 
Yes I know there were attempts to give a Latin feeling, and even an African one, or a Colombian one and now a Lebanese one. Sort of. But it was never fully there. I hate saying this, it felt North Korean! 
If you don’t believe me, compare for yourself. A hypersexualized version of a Pyongyang propaganda performance. 
North Korea children playing the guitar.

Concert marking North Korea’s 70th anniversary

Shakira & J. Lo’s FULL Frito-Lay Super Bowl LIV Halftime Show

I think maybe they should just ditch the pretense next year and have the whole thing take on a Jerry Springer theme. If there even pretends to be music, let it just be a bunch of background mood stuff. 😛 
oh: ps. what’s with the Gibson Firebird guitar she pretended to play. Capo to the back of the 6th fret, almost touching the 5th behind it??? I *think* she fretted the right three chords, eh? Maybe an open E chord at the 6th then an A and a B sort of? So that’s what, Bb Eb F? Hmmm. It looked like she was sort of playing those, but the strumming seemed way off. She was common law married to both Tommy and Tony Mottola, (pronounced guitar central, right?) You mean to tell me she never quite got the hang of at least faking a ripping rhythm guitar, right??? Yikes.


A quick reflection at the end of a great Longterm Sub assignment.

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 10:53 am

Ooh, very stressful but oh, so fulfilling.

Over the past month and a half I took 4 core classes in 8th grade science from approximately 2/3’s failing to more than 80% passing across something almost resembling bell-shaped curves we used to come to know and love. They were a little heavy on the B’s and C’s but much better than all those F’s so I feel pretty good about the whole thing.

I bridged the gap between when a teacher quit and a new certified teacher could come in.

So what helped me accomplish this? Everything from Sahana Srinivasan’s brand new “Brainchild” videos to Little Steven Van Zandt’s teachrock org curriculum such as the “sound breaking” episodes.

I found clever ways to show them that music cuts across all of the Gardner multiple intelligences and relates directly to the concepts they had to focus on like Kinetic and Potential energy.

Now I don’t want you to think it was all fun and games and Romper Room. There were some grueling issues of classroom management to overcome such as repeating the same “Do Now” requirements every day and moving on from the fact that more than half the students at any given time refuse to do anything they’re told to.

I doubt any one of those 4 core classes will resemble a “perfect” Harry Wong classroom but I have to be honest with you, those “goals” only worked perfectly in the 1990’s. These days even award winning K thru 12 classes have constant issues throughout the day that leave teachers wondering just who “Teach Like a Champion” and “First Days of School” were written for. Certainly not the 2019 classroom anywhere in THIS nation.

Good pointers, great guidelines. Be all to end all? Not even close.

But I digress. Long story short, I saw some totally disengaged students become enthralled with science experiments and final project essays and posters, and learning in general. I have to hope some of them now see themselves as scholars or life long learners. At the very least, I think most of them now realize that the scientific method is a great way to be wrong and then figure out what’s right instead of some scary monster to procrastinate away from or fight.


POTUS SCHMOTUS: A Metaphorical Ending.

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SIR ISAAC NEWT: A Fig For Ishmael’s Hate.
by MF.
Dedicated to Presidents Of The United States Of America

O new Hank eighth, I pity thee
Ye who serveth wives three.
One in Heaven, dead too young,
Another Lovely Lady One.
Third a Pope who you helped stuff,
By robbing goat and billary gruff.

So count your cash all you so skimmed
Three pouches full, you black sheep you;
Chucking scepter into lake of fire- son, so swim.

Swim, swim mariner — lest passing piranhas rip your flesh
Look starboard. See Orion’s belt; hides nothing
Yet vexing, churning: you’re ripe for gulfs to wash.

Hank Hate, O you moved heaven and earth
Have your way you miscreant — for you —
A murky mire, lake of fire, craggy barren hearth.

So stuff your pockets lawless one
Matthias, Jason’s lizard son.

Still whore and rob and symonize
Whilst our welfare slips past your eyes;

All the turtlewax in the world,
Can never mask the freedom you have furled.


marco frucht

Pine Island, 1997


Why We Clash

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 2:55 pm

Why We Clash

by Marco Capelli


We clash you and me.
First I thought because you are so different, you see.
But then after all the dust cleared
And the shrapnel was swept up into neat little tins
And all our respective allies’ bodies were policed up by loved ones—
Dogs and crows and old men with metal detectors and headphones
Closing the circle in little by little hoping to find a scrap or two,
And the grandmothers all weep over tea, saying

I Told You So: See? Nothing Was Accomplished Again;
Who’s Gonna Feed The Kids.

For the 432nd time,
It was then I realized:
The reason you and me,
We used up every bullet we had
Not because we’re so different, you see.

Because we’re mirror images, aren’t we?
Like Isaac and Ishmael maybe,
But who needs analogies when we’ve each got th’other?
We do kinda look alike, huh?
Besides all the acting, and talking
And walking like each other.

But enemy, my friend.
Can I ask you one question?
What kind of Creator lets us miss each other that many times?


Originally published in volume 4 number 5 of  Autumn Leaves magazine.


A SATISFIED MIND: Blogging My Fretboard Logic

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 7:13 am


by Marco Frucht

I must say, of all the lead guitar solos I’ve ever recorded for myself or anyone else, there isn’t one I’m truly satisfied with. I listen back and cringe a little bit usually. None are flawless. Don’t get me wrong. It doesn’t have to be flawless for me to keep from cringing, but it definitely needs to be close. It also needs to truly say something. Directly AND metaphorically, I think things through under a “lens” of “does this tell you something? Take you somewhere? Mean something…”

Shredding, and noodling mean little or nothing to me. A solo isn’t just a bunch of notes in the key of the song. It has to go somewhere. Listen to some of the artfulness and storytelling of some Link Wray or Stevie Salas solos, you’ll see what I mean.

Now that said, there is one 4track recording I did a very long time ago for a friend of mine, Mr. Luis Argarin.…/26131282-tgif-words-and-musi…

There’s one non-confident spot where I’m noodling and trying to find my way back to the story. Everything else about that solo (1:32 mins to about 2:13 mins) does just fine.

That one I’m nearly satisfied with. 🙂


Sometimes You War; Sometimes You Dialogue; Sometimes You Do Both.

“Sometimes it’s a good day to die, sometimes it’s a good day to have breakfast.” — Thomas Builds-the-Fire

College teacher Julie Jennings conveys the following breaking news:

“The 3-20-10 Providence Protest has sparked a dialogue with the game’s publisher. The game-maker is starting to consider Native pre-testing of the game. Julie Jennings would like the game-maker to be invited to present to the Rhode Island Indian Council. His letter will be printed soon and he (B. Youse, a corporate owner no doubt) can be reached at ”

RE: King Philip’s War role playing game.
Company Name: Multi-man Publishing.

My Opinion:

Awesome. Maybe he’ll allow a hefty portion of the outside panels of the box be words from elders of many tribes saying how they feel and strongly suggesting people learn more about not just Metacomet and Massasoit but find out more about each and every river name and street and town name. Heck there can be explanations that there are always more than one story that make up history at any time, and near the UPC label there could be a coupon for 5 bucks off at the Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research center. And maybe he’ll give a buck or two from each purchase to children in Haiti and Pine Ridge.

And how about a booklet listing NDN bands, artists, actors, songwriters, movie makers and all kinds of other talented people both contemporary and old.

There should be a separate booklet showing the facts that the original 13 colonies only succeeded in driving England out because native american boys were such skilled harpooners, lancers, swimmers, helmsmen and tacticians.





I demand somewhere on the box be placed the quote that almost got John Ledyard jr. kicked out of Dartmouth where he wrote in a bluebook that he felt Uncas should be placed right up there with Darwin or Isaac Newton for his grasp of science, technology tactics and domestic and nation to nation concerns.

OK I better stop ranting or this will get too long. Let me just say that all represents how I feel so far. I don’t want this box to see light of day but if it must, this is some of the treatment I believe it should be given from beginning to end.


Ted Kennedy. Posthumous Letter To President Obama

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Senator Ted Kennedy’s Posthumous Letter to President Obama


Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 2:47 am

U.S. Senator Ted Kennedy

(February 22, 1932 – August 25, 2009)

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