Working on Halloween album- Prepare To Be Scared

Why is it that i have a tragic, fundamental inability to get anything done on a recording program. I work in Logic. I use the term advisedly. I worked with pal Peter Moffitt, incredible pianist and all around good guy, to create a track yesterday. Piano vocals. He left and I was to bounce our session and send him an mp3. First thing I did was, I somehow managed to eliminate my vocals. I hit something, I don’t even know what, and I discarded my vocals. It keeps asking me to search for the vocal tracks, but I don’t know where they are. There’s no folder in my file called ‘Ether’…so now I’m trying to re-record the vocals over the existing piano track he laid down yesterday. And I’m getting nothing in the program. I can’t hear piano. I can’t hear myself. And I can’t believe I’m so bad at this! And it’s a cute song! Has potential!

I’m so Sandy

Hey people-

It’s taken me four days just to get to a working computer that has access to the internet! Everything is fine, my family is okay, we had one tree that almost fell on the house, and broke the windshield of our car, but other than that, no real damage. We have no power, however. We’ve been having people over every night, cooking meat from the freezer before it goes bad, drinking wine and singing songs by candle light. I could get used to this!

Thanks for all the notes of concern. I’ll be back in touch soon about the releaswe of my NEW ALBUM, i am NOT silly, very soon. It’s already gone to the printers, and I should be receiving delivery of actual cds in a few days. This hurricane may have delayed IANS world takeover release, but not by much! Have no fear!

Danna Banana at PS 40 in Brooklyn, Part 1

All kinds of things happening with Danna Banana. Perhaps the coolest is my work at PS 40 in Brooklyn through the good offices of Brooklyn Arts Council (BAC). I was hired as a teaching artist for first and second graders who had no music instruction at their school. We met Friday afternoons, February thru May. As the weather got warmer, it got harder and harder to contain all that energy at the end of a long school week. Nevertheless, we had some amazing kids, and amazing voices. (the volume attained even between songs, saying ‘i was here FIRST!’ or ‘You CUTTED!’ should be investigated as possible weapons-grade sonic defense system).

Our final program included songs from Canada, the United States, Spain and the Carribean.  We did a killer version of Jamaica Farewell, complete with dances. And we made masks for Scary Monster Train, and when we stomped menacingly toward the crowd, they were scared. Even though are masks were pink. Check it out:

We made masks for Scary Monster Train

Scary Monster Train 1

Once the MASKS were completed, we marched around holding them up as we roared.

And roared...

And Roared!!!

We couldn't decide which was scarier-- our scary monster drawing? highly intimidating, even in this light. or...

our own scary monster face!!!! Run away, run away!!!

I AM NOT SILLYe! ALBUM ALMOST DONE!

I’m writing this as we’re working on the finishing touches of my new, mostly live album I AM NOT SILLYe! It’s been a long time coming, there are a few other things I’ve been doing (off-Broadway play, lots o live performing), but I finally think the world is ready for some new Danna Banana. I hope you do to. Stay tuned for more updates, look for my At the Library song to become a huge hit on the library circuit. And remember- I AM NOT SILLYe!

WHERE WAS I?

Having your back go out leaves you spending a lot of time, well, flat on your back. You get to catch up on all the little things. Things you’d previously been too busy to ponder. Reconnect with your family. Write long letters to old friends you haven’t seen in ages. Take up chess. Learn Finnish. Or you can get hooked on mindless word games on your phone.

It doesn’t happen overnight. Historically, I’ve been so scared of the mindless robot I’d become if I allowed myself to play games on my phone that I havenʼt in fact bought any. Ever. I’m deathly afraid of Angry Birds. Ok, I got the free Angry Birds Lite last year…and an angel chewed off part of my soul’s face. My life is meaningless enough. To buy Angry Birds is to admit you give up, you’re done, there is no god, who are you kidding, you’re fooling no one, space is merely a real estate construct and time an excuse for more parking tickets and the parade of ugly into the engine of absurd that constitute life according to the immutable laws of a screamingly indifferent universe is in fact a vulgar waste of everyone’s time and why don’t you just stop already. That’s just the end user license agreement.

But did I listen? Word games. How astray could I go? Keeps the mind active.Helps
avoid dementia. Alzheimer’s. I
bought this game called Word Scramble. It’s kind of like Boggle, where you get a grid with letters and you have to make as many words as you can in three minutes. Except when you play Boggle in the real
world it’s fun. It’s a sort of a gentle competition. I’m good at word games. I beat my kids, they think I’m amazing for a brief moment…when you play online
it’s completely different. It’s like the whole world is watching. Or worse, playing. They
tell you how many words you could have formed with this set of letters. And
it’s not pretty. If you make fifteen words, the total number of
possible words is not twenty. Nor twenty five. No. They write ‘You Scored 47 points!’ all smiley face and then in small type below ‘and found 25 out of 104
words’. A hundred and four words? are you kidding me?
and I found twenty-five? Wait, that’s not…r u positive…? and in case you were wondering, they
conveniently list them for you. Oh sure.Part of the

algorithm

So you look at the list. Some of them are obvious. I found bite but not bites.

Darn, didn’t see ‘diet’. Story of my life. But then you look further. Easies?–

Pleasies. That’s not a word. That’s a typo. Ditas? what? ok, maybe. Doits?
Dobie? umm, I’ll let it…wait. TEIIDS??? are you kidding me? T-E-I-I-D-S.
you’re telling me that’s a word. That’s not a word. That is NOT a word!! So I
look it up. In a REAL dictionary. A red, American Heritage, hard cover, dog-
eared, insanely beautiful dictionary. With my name on the front in gold
embossed letters just below the title, like I’m the author. I got it for my bar-
mitzvah. And guess what? Teiids is not in there. So it’s not a word. Nyah
nyah nyah nyah nyah, poo poo ka ka!

And you yourself are getting a bit dog-eared but you think you’re ok and
you move on to the online version and it’s worse. you play these three
minute rounds and you’re frantically racking up points, you feel like you’ve
created words non-stop, you’re way over 50, you’re at, like, 75, 85, over 90
one time, and the game ends and a little screen comes up with the winner
at the bottom and you’re not it and furthermore it includes helpfully ‘you
were 32nd out of 51′. WTF???!!! Who ARE these people? And yr like ‘I can
beat that’ so you keep on playing but now yr mad and you actually get
worse, you have this frantic, manic edge, yr completely ignoring yr kids, of
course, but also ignoring simple words, easy words, slam dunks like ‘but’
and ‘saw’ because you’re trying to create seven letter words, in fact all
seven letter words or more, and you’re just making words up but you figure
if this flippin program thinks ‘teiids’ is a word, YOU NEVER KNOW. So yr
putting in, i don’t know…ejacted…clarsti…srgacle…straclate…that’s a
word. really. It’s like, um, a verb, der. latin,’1. to strangle with one’s own
pottery 2. using ceramics or ceramic shards to effect a strangulation’.

Now yr just desperate, hypnotized, you can’t stop. every waking moment.
at breakfast. at dinner. holed up in the john. What’s that knocking? So
insistent. dad…daad…DAD!!! Ugh!…the family’s given up. yr mumbling to
yourself & making private calculations & you suddenly realize that Js are
just really really annoying. Or not annoying at all. yr like ‘they’re so under-
used. let’s fix that’. jerst. what’s wrong with jerst? It’s not a word. Not a
word. Really? Define ‘word’…jarble. jaarbie. jickle. jikle. jik. jik. jik. You could
go on like this forever. Literally forever. it’s what they want. i know. i saw
them. they told me. they wnt yr dimn. yr nimd. imdn. mnid. mind. mind?
Wait, that’s a…and some primitive protective mechanism in your mind kicks
in at long last and causes you to remember why you refused to download

games in the first place. hit exit. hit it. hit exit. hit exit. hitexit hitexit hitexit.
Wait that’s seven-letter….hit it…! Ah. Safe. That was close. Where was I?