Monday, January 24, 2005

I'll be offline for two weeks

Hey Everyone,

I am heading out to the rural province of Pangasinan, Philippines with my friends tomorrow and will probably be offline until I return to Seattle after Feb 6th.

Thanks for reading and supoorting our music. See you in February. I'll have lots of great pix too.



Friday, January 21, 2005

Hello from Manila, Philippines!

Hey music lovers!

I have been here in Manila since Monday night with a group called the Philipino-American Retired Association (PAMRA), and organization started by my friend's brother. They sponsor bi-annual trips for Filipinos and friends. I have been on a tour of Filipino history of WWII, and today we went to a gorgeous hot springs out in a nearby province. I'll have some digital pix to post up when I return after Feb 6th.

Filipinos are nice people, they like to crack jokes and have fun, which fits pretty well with my philosophy. There's a music lounge in our hotel, and last night I met some good local musicians. The young Filipinas can sing their butts off, in addition to being tremendously beautiful.

They use the metric system here, which means they sell beers in the lounge by the quarter-, half-, or full liter. So when I went to the lounge with a friend, true to Seattle style, I oredered a micro-brewed San Miguel (by the way, if you haven't had San Miguel freshly brewed on the spot here, you haven't REALLY had San Miguel!). Thinking of pints, I ordered the full size. Uh, huh-- what I got was a liter, which is comparable to almost a pitcher in the states. I could barely lift the thing with one hand. Of course, being who I am for those that know me, I ordered one for my buddy too. We had to get a plate of calamari in order to make through our liters. The singing Filipinas helped a lot, of course.

Tonight is a latin group. It seems like the Filipino musicians are really good at covering just about any popular style of music. The Filipina singers love the pop ballad (Celine Dion seems to be a favorite).

So this is all way cool, mand next week we go out into the province of Pansanginan for two weeks and chill in the country side.

For the tech nerds - it turns out that buying computer gear isn't really much cheaper here. Flat-screens, laptops, plasma TVs, etc, are nearly the same price here, and are sold in the stores of the big Japanese mega corporaions. I paid about US$30 (1800 Philippine pisos) for 128 MB SD memory for my digital camera. This is about the same as at Frye's in Renton, I believe.

Anyway, I gotta go now and email y'all so you know to read this post. Feel fee to reply, you don't have to register, you can reply anonymously, and just sign your post only if you want me to know who wrote it. I'd really not bother with maintaining regeistered users.



Sunday, January 09, 2005

To snow or not to snow


It actually snowed a little bit here last night, in the wee hours of the morning. It was not the blizzard they were predicting, which is good, but it was a little bit.

I have put up some new songs on The Yoginis Band website. From the homepage click on the the link that says Listen to Songs at the very top.Or just click the links I made in the previous sentence.

I am going on a trip to the Phillippines starting January 17th. I think I will stay about 8 or 9 days, to relax in the sun with some friends. The Phillippines are in the Pacific Ocean, and did not get hit by the tsunami. I will probably be in the nothern part, actually in Manila most of the time.

Iexpect to be back by the 1st fo Feb. If, in the unlikely event I get to a computer with a fast connection, I will post up here from Paradise.

Have great day,


Friday, January 07, 2005

Benefits for the tsunami by my friends and other gigs


Sorry I have missed several days of posting here! I will try to post everyday now, at least a little bit. A lot has been happening.

It seems that many performers want to hold benefits for the Tsunami victims. My friend Johnny Conga will put on one with five bands at Seattle' Premier Club in SoDo (South Downtown) on January 20th.

It will feature Johnny's Band Tumba Caliente, and a performance by Jovino Santos Neto, my piano teacher from Brazil. There will be two other groups whose names escape me right now (sorry!), and hopefully some improvisations by some Indian musicians (this has not been confirmed yet).

It will cost $20 for all five groups, time is 7-11pm, January 20th, and all proceeds will go to the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF).

In other news from Yogi's World:

Jan. 7, Friday, SPECIAL World-Beat Dance Party
Seattle, WA
Maya Soleil Afro-World Fusion
Nectar in Fremont
412 N 36th St.
A hip, NONSMOKING dance club.
Come experience a variety of world beat music with Seattle's best DJ's and live
music from Maya Soleil Afro-World Fusion,
with GAIA CONSORT, mystical music for the freethinking spirit in all of us
8 pm DJs, 9 pm Gaia Consort , 10 pm - 1 am Maya Soleil
$7 (or $5 with this promo printed out). Both of these bands have been doing shows with ticket prices up to $25 recently, so this is a great deal.

Lastly, Paula Maya is playing at Tost in Fremont on Saturday Night, January 8th.
Paula's my good friend so please go to her show. Her band may be the best kept secret in the Seattle alternative rock scene. She gets consistently great reviews nationwide and plays a lot here. Highly recommended.

Ok blogger-philes. Enough for tonight. I am off for my Friday nioght, see you at the Maya Soleil gig!


Saturday, January 01, 2005

Happy New Year 2005

Hey folks,

It's been a busy couple of days. I played a new year's eve gig with the Wet City Rockers reggae band, at the Alpental resort of the ski area at Snoqualmie Pass. The house was packed and we had a lot of fun. Fortunately the weather was mild, so the drive up and back from Seattle was easy. But is was a very late night of couse - 3:30 AM when I finally got myself home.

By the way, when you read my posts, click on the links on people's names to find out the good work they are doing also. Many of my friends have very interesting projects and/or good music happening. It's definitely worth a click to see what they are doing.

On today, New Year's Day, I went and saw my friend Immaneni Ashok perform Carnatic Indian vocal music. The theme of his concert was the god Rama, and he sang a six-part composition depicting the highlights of the story of Rama, called the Ramayana. He also sang a couple of other ragas. He had a very good violinist named Raman Iyer with him and a younger guy named Karthik Gopalratnam playing the rhythmic accompaniment on mridangam . Very good musicians.

I ran into my good friends Subhan and Shanti there and we all meditated to the music. Shanti's mother was there too, and she enjoyed the concert although it was quite a bit different from the western operas that she attends. We went to a South Indian restaurant afterwards in Bellevue, and I rounded out the night with a Bollywood movie rental that I will watch after I make this post.

Thusrday night I recorded some keyboard tracks for Sanjeev and Chandana. I went over there with Tony and it was good. They're good folks and very good musicians. They have a wonderful little boy, two years old, named Zev.

I case you haven't figured it out yet, the culture of India is a major influence on me. I had a Buddhist monk give me a past life reading many years ago, and he said the majority of my recent incarnations were in India, Tibet, and he also said I was alive at the time of Confucius, although I was not a direct student. Who knows whether that's all true or not. All I know is that when I was preparing for my trip to India in the 1990's, everyone weas warning me of the massive culture shock I would experience. Nothing of the sort happened. India felt like a homecoming for me, and I had never physically been there. Go figure.

Happy 2005!