Saturday, July 20, 2013

A Blog About Blogs

It’s been a couple of years since I linked to some other bloggers, yet I am no more savvy about the blogosphere than when I started doing this. Tonight, somehow, I am sharing a few more and although they aren’t specifically symphonic music-related, they are interesting and amazing enough that they shouldn’t be overlooked.

Violist Julie Goodale and I met while playing in the Lake George Opera Festival orchestra in 1995. The orchestra was comprised of players from many states, but mostly free-lancers from Boston, Philly and New York, which is where Julie is from. For several summers in a row she would regale us with tales of treks on the highest peaks in the world, and of marathon runs. I wasn’t aware early on that she was a breast cancer survivor, but when I learned that, my mind just boggled. Her website, Life-Cise, and her blog, Fitness for Survivors, give profound insight into the world of someone who is not merely a survivor but a fitness pacesetter who makes the average “fitness nut” look like a couch potato.

Kimberly Simpkins is a KSO violinist who left town a few years ago, but has returned to pursue a degree at UT. The ins and outs of her life in music and parenthood are detailed in her blog, Mining for Diamonds.

An event that is probably not unique to Knoxville happens every June 7th, rain or shine (rain this year). It’s the Bob Dylan Birthday Bash, and this year I had the pleasure of performing on the Market Square stage with Norwegian Wood, a Beatles cover band. Sharing the stage with me were Ayca Yayman, (KSO second oboist), cellist Alexia Pantanizopolis, accordionist Tres Dogherty “(Tres Dog)”and violinist Seth Hopper. It was challenging, to do Dylan’s music, because his tunes often are more spoken than sung, sort of a folk-sprechstimme. Not great for an instrumental band, but we found some tunes that worked. A song that would definitely not have worked was Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again. Someone has co-opted that song title and named their blog after it, Stuck Inside of Knoxville with the Urban Blues Again. Anything that happens in downtown Knoxville, and I mean anything, is recounted in this every-other-day blog that has won the MetroPulse Best of Knoxville 2013 award for local blogs. Some very timely documentation of the burgeoning downtown Knoxville scene can be found here.

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