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Rare sound in Los Angeles

Jake and I often hallucinate this sound. Just ’cause we miss it. What a treat to fall asleep to the sound of rain outside the window.

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Focus practice: dovR

Looks like I need some metering practice, too. Music by my talented brother.

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Lightning flight with music by Markus Whaley


Music by Markus Whaley.

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Thank you, Ed

I met Ed Meghreblian through Jake’s aunt. He’s the kind of guy who you’d want spinning you on the dance floor. The kind of guy whose stories never go\et old or boring, no matter how many times you hear about the underserved kids he coached in South L.A. And, most importantly for me, he’s the kind of guy who is still in love with his wife, after more than 60 years. Ed and Dorothy are total role models for me and Jake.

Ed Meghreblian passed away last week. But, not before a former student saw a short vid I had made for aol’s Patch and got in touch with Ed to tell him how much he had meant to her. He meant a lot to a lot of people. And I am so thankful to have met him.

From the L.A. Times:

Meghreblian, Edward Michael
December 25, 1923 – August 11, 2011
Enthralling storyteller of life experiences, from shared boyhood with brother Robert in Menands, New York, WWII veteran, career in the Department of Parks and Recreation and initiation of L.A. Municipal Games, service in Human Relations.
Devoted UCLA Bruins basketball fan, natural athlete, everyone-clear-the-floor dancer. Tasteful and dapper, with stylish integrity, yet guileless.
With innate ability to connect easily with anyone, his yearning was to help people fulfill their potential. Mentor and surrogate father of youth from all economic backgrounds and ethnicities, he nurtured innumerable relationships that lasted decades.
Woodworking artisan, a plan always in the works.
A unique relationship with the English language inspired the coining of countless new words and phrases.
Son of Armenian immigrant parents, family was the source of his deepest pride. Devoted and protective, he and Dorothy were married 60 years. He considered their daughter Caren, son-in-law Harry, and grandson Max among his most precious gifts.

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Kissing On Cue

Jake’s friend Tom DiMenna is an actor, a stand-up comedian, a singer and songwriter. He is especially talented at playing an actor named Telly Savalas, who is best known for his Don Juan, crime-fighting role in a 1970s show called Kojak.

Tom recently had a gig playing Telly at the Comedy Central Stage in Hollywood, and he needed some extras to help him set the mood. (Really, he is just fine setting the mood himself. He is spot on suave with his white suit, his bald head, his dangling cigarette and his Telly-isms: “Who Loves Ya, Baby?”) He asked us to make-out during the show. We were sitting with some other couples at dinner tables on stage, the rest of the audience behind us. We were supposed to wait for the cue, then get into it. Apparently, we were slightly early, so we ended up kissing for his entire love song, the audience cackling behind us.

Tom wrote us after the show:
“You two were hilarious, thank you! I gave you the slightest look and it was go time, I should have been more careful.”

And, this from the guy who played gay lover/high councilor to Jake’s Prince Edward in a Braveheart parody music video For England.

For reference, here’s Telly playing Telly:

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OK … Go!

damian1.jpg

Here’s more from the concert last night. I posted my acoustic vid on YouTube and Vimeo. Maybe this’ll be my big break. Maybe Apple will hire me to shoot iPhone vids on rooftops across the world!

Last night, we waited in line with a few hundred others outside the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. We were herded into an elevator. With an elevator attendant. She pushed the 5 button.

Jake: “What’s on the fifth floor?”

Her: “Awesomeness.”

She was so right. The doors opened on to LACMA’s West Penthouse where pieces from the “set” of the Rube Goldberg machine were on display. We saw the mousetrap flags, the spinning, water-glass-playing guitar and the original suits the band members wore when they were blasted with paint!

The rooms opened up on to a rooftop space where we listened to OK Go play a few acoustic songs (guitar, xylophone and a hand-held “chaosilator” that made distortion sounds). We watched the now-viral music video on a big screen that rotated down to play (likely also built by Syyn Lab), then headed in for a Q & A and an evening of dancing to DJ Tim Nordwind (the band member with the big glasses).

Here are some stills we shot with the iPhone (again, future career as iPhonist) set to the album version of “This Too Shall Pass.” After hearing the vid version, the album version and the live version, I think I have to go with acoustic as my top choice.

Bonus Tracks:

1. I saw Susan Sarandon in the bathroom and all I could think of to say was “Excuse Me,” as I reached for the soap.

2. Jake and I spoke with lead singer Damian Kulash on the roof. Jake asked him about smashing the TV in the vid. And, yes, that is the real sound that TVs make when they’re hit with a sledgehammer. “It’s an implode, not an explode,” he told us. They smashed a lot of TVs in that Echo Park warehouse. Some they bought for $40 each. Some they bought at the discounted rate of $15 for all the TVs one thrift shop had.

3. OK Go will play in Los Angeles on May 21 at the Henry Fonda Theater. We’re hoping to be hired as dancers for that show. Stay tuned.

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