Christmas Land


I was at a point in my life when the feeling one gets from the Christmas Season begins to fade. So i decided to write a set of Christmas songs with my friend Joey Grijalva. We called our Christmas Album Moon Christmas.

The working title for this song was Christmas Land, looking back I probably should have called this Christmas Show. My original intent when writing this song was to make a story about remembering and hanging on to the good parts of Christmas. To sort of go back to that person you were when you really loved the Christmas holiday

As far as I remember, I composed this in Studio Visions. Brought in Joey Grijalva and John Horne to record with me (on drums). The wonderful backing vocals are Julie Van Duren.

This song was recorded in my (home studio) garage, on a Akai MG1214 aka Akai 12 track.. I used a old studiomaster mixing board (I bought off Chad or John Wackerman), Studio Visions DAW, Quadra 650, assorted 421, 414, sony, and Shure mics, alesis compressors, timecode machine, assorted keyboards, and spx90’s.

The cover photo was Dave Sparks. Im pretty sure I laid out the cassette sleeve via Pagemaker. We had this album pressed at Rainbow Records.


Thoughts of Murray Spivack

When I studied with Murray he was in his late 80’s. I was his last student of the day on fridays so it was my job to drive him to Farmers Market get some corned beef and cabbage then go to his apartment and dine with him. During our meals together we would talk about all the famous drummers he had taught, he talked about their skill levels temperament etc. Since I had a personal interest in sound engineering I would pick his brain about his audio career. Murray would talk about which mic Julie Andrews or Barbra Streisand preferred. How he balanced all the rounds in the parade scene of Hello Dolly. I even have some recoardings he made for me from his personal reel to reel of the board mixes from West Side Story. His apartment even had some Hollywood history. It contain his academy award from the original King Kong. And was party central for the likes of actors such as Fred Aster as well as the heads of the major studios.

Chuck Flores 11-24-2016

When I play the drums my teachers influence “sound” out of my hands and feet. Greg Perry, Kenny Peters, Roy Burns, Roy Mcurdy, Rick Latham, Chad Wackerman, Murray Spivack, and Chuck Flores. Im so sad to hear that drummer Chuck Flores passed away yesterday. I studied drumset coordination with Chuck Flores back in the 1990’s at his house. His studies made a huge difference in my overall coordination on the drum set. And he was a really decent and generous person.

Evernote verses Mac Notes

It looked so easy, I remember watching the Evernote video about how you could collect all of this information and do things like write term papers. I have been using Evernote for many years and even tried the term paper thing. It wasn’t as easy as they make it look. Eventually Evernote became a thing I would use if I was out of notebook paper in a class or if I needed to write down a shopping list. So when Evernote announced they are only allowing free usage via two devices I decided to look around at other options. For me Evernote is not worth the price they are asking for usage. So my first attempt at replacing Evernote is going to be with the note system built into my Mac OS and or IOS or whatever they are calling it these days.

8mm transfer

This is an old home movie from around 1976. There were no smart phones back then, but there were plenty of disaster films such as Towering Inferno or Earthquake. So if you got a hold of your older sisters camera you might of made a film like this.

John F Kennedy Shamrock Regiment Marching Band

I used to complain to my sister Vicki “why do you have to stick that camera in my face all the time?”. Many years later I became interested in photography and time had began to catch up with my life. I then realized that my sister was right. So thank you Vicki Hada you were right, and thank God you shoved the camera in my face otherwise I would not have these memories. And now I shove my camera in peoples faces, I hope they will someday understand why I do this.

This footage was captured at a transitional time in John F. Kennedy’s Marching bands history. This was the first year the band marched in a more drum corp like drills and the band wore the beginnings of a drum and bugle corp style uniform. Previous during field shows and half time events the bands in our districts wore our parade uniforms and marched in a big rectangle.