The Gigblog: Backtalk Organ Sextet

Listen to One Cylinder by the Backtalk Organ Sextet https://ia801509.us.archive.org/2/items/backtalk2017-02-10.ca-14.flac16/backtalk2017-02-10d2t08.mp3 Scene Where: Irene's, Ottawa Who: Backtalk Organ Sextet Don Cummings - Hammond Organ and leader Mike Essoudry – Drums Chris Swain – Guitar Ed Lister – Trumpet Zakari Frantz – Alto sax Me – Tenor sax Report Risk Factor: 7 (my first gig with this…Read more The Gigblog: Backtalk Organ Sextet

Meeting the Underdog: A Mingus Epitaph Memoir

On June 3,1989 I spent the better part of three hours onstage at Alice Tully Hall in New York's Lincoln Centre alongside Gunther Schuller, John Handy, Wynton Marsalis, John Abercrombie, George Adams and literally dozens of other legendary jazz musicians in what was called by the New York Times, “the jazz event of the decade.”…Read more Meeting the Underdog: A Mingus Epitaph Memoir

Revolutionary Wachowski Series Sense8 Triggers Media Blackout

As of this writing, a week after the release of the extraordinary Sense8 Christmas special on Netflix, Rotten Tomatoes lists only 5 reviews of the show. Barely enough to trigger the Tomatometer. This is ridiculous and needs explaining. For by rights this mind-expanding, action-packed and shockingly beautiful adrenalin shot of television should be widely celebrated and…Read more Revolutionary Wachowski Series Sense8 Triggers Media Blackout

Nobel Prize for Literature? Come on, Bob Dylan is an Oralist.

In my book Digitopia Blues – Race, Technology and the American Voice, I described Dylan's impact this way: Dylan signaled the triumph of oral poetry for white America, the reconciliation of the word and the body, of the singer and the song, of the poet and the community. From here on in, it was a…Read more Nobel Prize for Literature? Come on, Bob Dylan is an Oralist.

Donald Trump and the Immaturity of OS3 Politics

Oral Culture = OS1      Literate Culture = OS2      Networked Culture = OS3 The rise of Donald Trump can be usefully understood as a product of the disruptive collision of oral, literate and digital cultures, or what I call OS1, OS2 and OS3, aka the Operating Systems (OS) of human civilization. That collision is the defining…Read more Donald Trump and the Immaturity of OS3 Politics

Conflict Between OS1, OS2 and OS3 on Display at Walrus Talk

The Walrus Talk at the Canadian Museum of Nature on Thursday night took The Arctic as its theme, and the evening was as inspiring and illuminating as previous events in this ambitious national series. It also demonstrated with stunning clarity the conflict between communications cultures that is my main topic on this blog. As usual,…Read more Conflict Between OS1, OS2 and OS3 on Display at Walrus Talk

Launching my new book: Friend or Foe

It took only 10 minutes for Sheila Barry of Groundwood Books to tell me she loved my story and wanted to publish it, but it has taken 4 years for the final product to arrive in bookstores! Happily Friend or Foe is now out and it has garnered some sweet reviews. "...a simple and utterly…Read more Launching my new book: Friend or Foe