Frank Denton - The Rogue Raven

Location: Seattle, Washington, United States

What you have here is an old guy. In education for 30 years, started teaching elementary, ended as library and media director of community college. I've enjoyed mountain climbing, sports car rallying, was pipe major of a bagpipe band, played guitar and sang during the folk revival, walking and hiking later in life. Now fairly sedentary. Enjoy reading, esp. mysteries and fantasy, but my reading is pretty eclectic. Enjoy movies, giving Netflix a workout.

Wednesday, June 30, 2004

Oh, sorry. I got waylaid by an article link on the MSN Homepage. It's entitled The Capitalism of Soccer by Daniel Gross. He contends that baseball is called the all-American sport but goes on to show that it is highly socialistic. Meantime some Americans have called soccer a socialistic sport and he shows that it is highly capitalistic. I've been a soccer fan for a long time and watch whenever a game is on tv. We saw the friendly game between Manchester United and Chelsea played before 67,000 fans in Seahawk Stadium here in Seattle last July. I followed the English Premier games every Tuesday during the season and watch the MSL games whenever ESPN allows me to. They often cut away to some other kind of game at the half after having announced the game in the schedule. Ah, well. If you have the slightest interest in soccer, you miught take a look at this article.

What I started to write was that it is check-writing time in the Denton household. You know, when the month and the money run out at almost the same time. As a retiree, I only get paid once a month. So when I sat down to write checks this evening I thought I'd better have some music in my ears. I use the earphones because my wife is a loyal fan of Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy. So I can turn off the speakers, use earphones, and set the volume at the right place for me without disturbing her. I chose Maria Muldaur's A Woman Alone with the Blues. It's not really a blues album but what, in my day, we called 'torch songs.' Most of them are slow ballads with a plaintive quality to them. They seem like strange selections for the lady who recorded 'Midnight at the Oasis' those many years ago. But it's a good album. And good arrangements by the band backing her. She cuts loose, though, on the last cut with a really upbeat 'I'm Gonna Go Fishin'. Good stuff, Maynard.

Tuesday, June 29, 2004

The Blues Revue appeared in the mail today and along with it a sampler CD. These are always fun. The songs offer a great variety, from Delta acoustic to funk to Chicago and west coast style. Quite often there are reviews of someone's new CD in the magazine and a song from the CD on the sampler. And sometimes the reviews are not too kind. A case in point was the new CD from Deborah Coleman. She has just moved to Telarc and the reviewer said that he hoped this would be a breakthrough for her career but this was not to be. Well, what do I know? The cut on the sampler was an instrumental entitled The River Wild. It has the feel of swamp music and I was fascinated with it. So I guess I either don't know anything about blues music, only know what I like. If the rest of her CD is anywhere close to being as good, I'll be satisfied.

Monday, June 28, 2004

Old Time Radio Convention

For the past ten years or better I've been a member of REPs, the Radio Entusiasts of Puget Sound. This past weekend we held our tenth convention. The programs are made up of panels with people from the era when radio dramas were the main entertainment in people's homes. There are recreations of broadcasts and often a panel or two to keep members abreast of where technology is taking the hobby. It's amazing what some folks do with old radio transcriptions to clean up the pops and scratchiness. And the advent of MP3 has brought a whole new dimension to the hobby of collecting old time radio (OTR) shows.

This year the program revolved around the Mutual Broadcasting Network. Several of the guests had been part of The Lone Ranger, Challenge of the Yukon (Sgt. Preston of the Yukon) and The Green Hornet. Their stories of director, radio actors, and happenings was very entertaining.

There were seven blind people at the convention. It was amusing to find them lined up, hand on the shoulder of the person before them, finding their way into a meeting room and down to the front row. The blind leading the blind. At a break I wandered out into a courtyard and found them sitting together and telling blind jokes. We have two people in our club that are blind. They are amazing people.