Saturday, October 17, 2009

Transferring My LPs To iPod & Compact Disc Is Time Consuming, But Great Fun

I have a very large collection of lp records and have been slowly transferring many of them to compact disc and loading them in my iPod. In addition to the several thousand lps that I have purchased over the years, my collection keeps growing as several of my friends have recently given me their old lps when making room in their homes for other things (Thanks Bruce & Ora). It's just the opposite at my home, as I am getting rid of other things to make room for more lps!

The transfer to digital media is very time consuming. I first listen to the entire album and then decide if I want to burn a disc or load it into my iPod. If so, then I'll listen again as I am doing the transfer. The simple transfer of one lp to disc and then to iPod, including the audition play and labeling, will end up taking me almost two hours. Though the process takes a lot of time, it sure is a lot of fun and therefore time well spent. My goal is to transfer an album each day, though I generally end up completing only about four per week.

Today I'm burning "Don't Look Away Now!", a swinging recording on the Prestige label by jazz great James Moody. Vocalese master Eddie Jefferson sings on one cut too. I'll bet that I haven't listened to this lp in ten or fifteen years. It is excellent and I love it! If not for this transfer endeavor, no telling when I would have heard it again. I'll probably dig it for a third time today on the way to my gig, this time by conveniently popping the newly burned cd into the van cd player.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

A Great Trip To Cleveland To Watch Our Bengals Defeat The Browns

Kim Harrod, Robert Howell, Matthew Hall, Zack Howell, Steve Garth and I had a great trip to Cleveland this past weekend. We left early Saturday morning in the Howell suv and headed north for some NFL football and fun.

Our first stop was at a northern Kentucky McDonalds restaurant to stretch and have a breakfast sandwich and coffee. Next on the agenda was a rest area stop in northern Ohio where we broke out my grill and let Chef Steve work his magic.

This Kabob Is Kim's...Stay Away!

My great friend Kim devoured kabobs prepared by Chef Steve Garth (of Giuseppe's fame). Matthew laughed at the large amount of barbeque sauce left on Kim's face caused by his aggressive eating style. He ate much like a protective dog unwilling to share a bone. Though Kim's eating style is relentless, I would have to give The Zackster the award for most food consumed. That guy can really put it away! He is an eating machine.

Upon arrival in Cleveland, we checked in to the Crowne Plaza Hotel. It was a good choice, as it was conveniently located within walking distance of Cleveland Browns Stadium, The Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame, Lake Erie, and several nice sports bars and restaurants.

The Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame Was Cool

We enjoyed a couple of hours in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. I checked out a couple of Selmer Mark VI saxophones and a Hammond B-3 organ that were on display. There is a lot of stuff at the H.O.F. and I'll probably go back again sometime to examine everything more thoroughly.

On Saturday night we walked downtown to find a restaurant. I enjoyed stopping in at The House of Blues for a few minutes, but we decided to have fish and chips at Flannery's. The food was just average, but the atmosphere was excellent. Several college football games were winding down and we were able to check them out on the televisions in the restaurant. We returned to the hotel in time to watch the Tennessee-Auburn and Miami-Oklahoma games on tv.

I Paid Cash For This Muffin

On Sunday morning we hit a fantastic breakfast buffet at the Hyatt Regency. Afterwards, Steve, Matt, Kim, and I each grabbed an apple and muffin to take with us while standing outside the restaurant at the buffet table waiting for the rest of our group. An employee saw us taking the food and quickly came over to us and disgustingly proclaimed, "This food is not free, you have to pay for it!" He scolded us pretty good. As Steve was letting him know that we had just spent about $150 at the restaurant for the breakfast, I went back to the buffet table and grabbed another apple or two.

It Was Tough To Get Steve To Leave The Tailgating Lot

One of the most fun things to do on our away game trips is to visit the opposing team's tailgating lot. We get called a lot of names, but we can handle it. The Browns fans were a little more subdued than usual this year, as their team had an 0-3 record going into the game.

Blues Traveler John Popper Performed The National Anthem

It was a treat hearing John Popper, vocalist and harp player for the band "Blues Traveler", perform the National Anthem on harmonica. It was a very bluesy version, to say the least.

A Great View Of The Game From Our Seats

Our seats were practically on the field. We were in the third row right beside the tunnel where the Bengals came out of the locker room. When the action was on our end of the field, we could hear the popping of the pads and see the expressions on players' faces.

The Bengals pulled out a thrilling 23-20 win in overtime. The trip couldn't have been any better. Click here to view a photo slideshow of our fun trip.