2 years ago today….

The view from Golden Ridge...
The view from Golden Ridge looking toward the town of Golden and the Flatirons in the distance…

It was 2 years ago today that Erin and I moved into the new house up on Golden Ridge, the current Casa NoV, so today we are celebrating that.

I blogged about the move and the house renovation at the time; you can find it here: http://wp.me/p1noGQ-Fm

Maxx, during the move (2012)...
Maxx, during the move (2012)…

Hardly seems like two years ago because it seems like we were always supposed to be here and it doesn’t feel like we’ve been there that long.

What I remember most about that day: keeping tabs on our cat Maxx, making sure he didn’t slip outside somewhere during all the chaos; the wind tunnel that was created by having the garage door, the door from the basement and the front door open at the same time while trying to move stuff in; that Erin and I had a rare fight that lasted all of about 15 seconds; getting 4 take-out dinners from New Peach Garden Chinese and scarfing them down with a bottle of champagne at the end of a long day.

I remember that I moved into the ‘mancave’ a little before the actual move because I was doing the final mixdown/pre-mastering work on “In 4 The Evening” and needed the time and expanded space. A lot has happened since then…

Now in the spring of 2014… one new orange kitteh added, a couple of albums later, getting engaged…

Cosmo, demonstrating the proper form for "kitty meat loaf"....
Cosmo, demonstrating the proper form for “kitty meat loaf”….

This past month has been kind of tough… Currently, both Erin and I are recovering from some sort of cold/respiratory virus thing which has been the most vexing ailment to get rid of these last 3 weeks, especially since we just don’t ever get sick… not used to it, but I think we’re on the other side of it now, finally (one would hope), and welcome, Spring!

Nights on Venus News:
At the beginning of March, I did an interview with the new Denver music blog Bluestribute.net and here is the link to that: http://bluestribute.net/night-venus-interview-craig-thomas/

Also have posted a new track – the mastered demo - from the forthcoming album online on SoundCloud:
BLISS IN BLUE
(© 2014 Nights on Venus/Craig C. Thomas. All rights reserved.)

The new album is progressing fairly quickly right now; I’m currently recording a cover song from a well-known 70′s band which I hope to finish up and have permissions for by early next month for an end of May release as an advance track for the full album in late October/November, as yet untitled. Two gigs have been booked for summer festivals here in Colorado next year, in 2015…

santa-fe_5Another Day in Paradox,” the third album from Nights on Venus is available on CD and as digital download (MP3) as are the eponymously-titled first album (digital download only) and “In 4 the Evening” on CDBaby, iTunes, Bandcamp, Amazon, eMusic, and other fine online retailers including the NoV website.

"Another Day in Paradox" - 2013
“Another Day in Paradox” – 2013

Follow Craig and NoV on Twitter (@xlntsky) and Facebook.

 

 

 

 

#SXSW REWIND : Venture Capitalist Admits Artists Can Not Make A Living On Streaming Royalties…

nightsonvenus:

Well there you have it… someone actually coming out and saying that no, artists cannot make money through the streaming services, which we already knew. Better start working on that design for a killer T-shirt. If you’re a musician/recording artist, there’s really only one thing to do here: pull your entire catalog OFF the streaming services if you haven’t done so already. Imagine artists leaving the streaming services en masse. No music, no business.

1455852_754611337905608_936081681_n

Originally posted on The Trichordist:

The grand irony here is that the panel which asked the question “”Will Artists Make Money on Big Music Platforms?” not only reported that artists could not , but also suggested that artists needed to focus on selling concert tickets and merchandise. You know, things artists did BEFORE the internet.

We do admire the honesty of Hany Nada, Managing Partner GGV Capital who admitted during the SXSW Panel “Will Artists Make Money on Big Music Platforms?” that he believed that they would not be able to do so. He also added that the point of digital streaming platforms such as Pandora, Spotify, and others was promotion to help the artists tour, sell t-shirts and offer other non-digitally distributable “experiences” to fans (why is this sounding more and more like prostitution?).

At least Mr.Nada is honest, which is refreshing given that the man has more integrity than most of the executives…

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the original ‘battle of the bands’…. mosquitoes vs. honey bees

From 1965… and an episode of the classic TV show, “Gilligan’s Island.” Yes, that same “Gilligan’s Island” (there’s only one) that invokes the inevitable questions: what were the Howells doing with trunks full of cash on a 3-hour tour (money laundering?), how many times can you eat coconut cream pie before getting sick of it, and if it was an uncharted desert isle, how did so many visitors/guest stars keep showing up there?

As Dave Letterman has said many a time: “Accept the premise and you’ll enjoy the bit.”

This is from Season 2, episode 12 – “Don’t Bug the Mosquitoes.” I loved this episode when I was a kid; it came on cable a couple of times this weekend and I hadn’t seen it in so long I had to watch. It didn’t disappoint and provided the best laugh in weeks.

"Ladies and gentlemen, The Mosquitoes!" Performing their latest hits, "Don't Bug Me" and "He's a Loser" for the 7 stranded castaways. Well, they are kind of a captive audience...
“Ladies and gentlemen, The Mosquitoes!” Bingo, Bango, Bongo, and Irving performing their smash hits, “Don’t Bug Me” and “He’s a Loser” for the 7 stranded castaways. Well, they are kind of a captive audience…
The helicopter that dropped off The Mosquitoes...
The helicopter that dropped off The Mosquitoes…

So how did The Mosquitoes get to the island in the first place? By helicopter of course!

As you can clearly see, the helicopter holds only room for one more person (unless it’s a M.A.S.H. helicopter and then, well… that wouldn’t be good), and there are 4 of them… plus equipment!

None of this seems outrageous or absurd when you’re a kid… you don’t notice these minor details, so you go along with it. It all seemed plausible somehow; it was the mid-1960′s when anything seemed possible, but let’s take a closer look…

Well first off, overlooking the obvious fact that there are no microphones, you will note that there are no guitar cables either, running from the guitars to anywhere. Where are the Marshall stacks? Not even a lone Fender Twin Reverb or Ampeg bass amp… or even a ‘snake’ – where’s the electricity coming from? No power cords? No power chords! But through the miracle of modern science (or perhaps the Professor) we have… amplification! And ‘granny glasses!’ (that’s Irving).

The Mosquitoes, a.k.a. The Wellingtons, close up...
The Mosquitoes, a.k.a. The Wellingtons, close up…

During the episode, a plan is hatched for getting The Mosquitoes to help the castaways get off the island.

“We’re not dealing with regular people, we’re dealing with musicians!” the Skipper exclaims to Gilligan. Words of wisdom form the Skipper. OMG… already, in 1965, the stereotype is well in place. Musicians…. not “regular people.” Priceless.

The men decide to put together their own band using homemade, island-made instruments, give a concert, and the results are predictably…. awful. Then it’s the ladies’ turn, and thus are born… The Honey Bees.

"The Honey Bees"... Dawn Wells, Tina Louise, and Natalie Schafer...
“The Honey Bees”… Dawn Wells, Tina Louise, and Natalie Schafer singing “You Need Us”…
Mary Ann looking a little nonplussed here...
Mary Ann looking a little nonplussed here… “Like a bee needs its buzz/ Like a peach needs its fuzz…”
The music may be pre-recorded, but at least they're not lip-synching... again, the electricity thing.
The music may be pre-recorded, but at least they’re not lip-synching, as far as we know…

Of course, they’re an instant hit. So much so that the Mosquitoes leave the island the next day (via the aforementioned helicopter). In their farewell note, they say, specifically to the Honey Bees: “… You’re good, gals. Perhaps too good, and we have enough competition as it is…” and they leave everyone stranded on the freakin’ island!

But to show there’s no hard feelings, The Mosquitoes leave the castaways a parting gift: their latest album! – “The Mosquitoes at Carnegie Hall.” Gilligan complains that it’s not even autographed. Exactly… “non-regular people” will let you down every time.

Well, that’s showbiz… but at least they have a turntable. Hilarious and very perceptive episode… that whole competition thing. And you can find the videos here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=62-NgcB7424

Until next time…

santa-fe_5Another Day in Paradox,” the third album from Nights on Venus is available on CD and as digital download (MP3) as are the eponymously-titled first album (digital download only) and “In 4 the Evening” on CDBaby, iTunes, Bandcamp, Amazon, eMusic, and other fine online retailers including the NoV website.

"Another Day in Paradox" - 2013
“Another Day in Paradox” – 2013

Follow Craig and NoV on Twitter (@xlntsky) and Facebook.

Musicians Sing for a Cause That’s Their Own | The New York Times

nightsonvenus:

Rally & Free Concert tonight from the Content Creators Coalition – NYC Chapter… http://ccc-nyc.org/

#IRespectMusic

Originally posted on The Trichordist:

In the latest example, a group of artists including David Byrne, Mike Mills of R.E.M., John McCrea of Cake and the guitarist Marc Ribot are putting on a free concert on Tuesday at Le Poisson Rouge in Greenwich Village to protest the way radio stations pay royalties, and to introduce a new advocacy group, the Content Creators Coalition.

“This is possible now because musicians and artists are fed up,” said Mr. Ribot, who is renowned for his work with musicians including Tom Waits, another coalition member. “It takes a lot to get a musician to go to a meeting, serve on a committee. It’s not what we do; we play music. But the way things are now, many of us feel that our backs are to the wall.”

READ THE FULL STORY AT THE NEW YORK TIMES:
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/25/arts/music/musicians-sing-for-a-cause-thats-their-own.html?_r=1

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a long and lustrous winter… new song, “infinity pool”

Today we are gripped in a cloud of freezing mist…

snow_fog2

The elk come down from the high country to Golden... the scene from our 'backyard'...
The elk come down from the high country to Golden… the scene from our ‘backyard’…

Given that winter is always going to be winter, does it seem like these winter storms have been more severe and extreme ever since they started being named? Currently we have Winter Storm Orion… any takers on the name for the next one? Persephone perhaps?

This reminded me of both of Bill Murray’s speeches in the movie “Groundhog Day.” Usually I watch this movie around this time of year if not on Feb. 2nd itself; I love this movie, one of my favorites. This year Groundhog Day fell on the day of the Super Bowl so Erin and I were watching the Broncos… watching the Broncos get thoroughly beaten. If you’re a Seattle fan, you loved it; Denver fan, not so much.

Anyway, in the movie, in his first speech Bill Murray asks the question: “You want a prediction about the weather…?” Well, here’s the clip…

Which over the course of the movie transforms into this…

As always it comes down to a matter of perspective, how we choose to view things. Small consolation to those who are getting slammed in the Midwest and the Northeast (and even the South!)… and also everyone who’s on I-70 up in the mountains today ’cause we have 6 more weeks of winter. Early spring?… I’m predicting March 20th.

New song this week, “Infinity Pool”…
INFINITY POOL
(© 2014 Nights on Venus/Craig C. Thomas. All rights reserved.)

Again, this is a mastered demo – album version may vary a little. While the title may be specific to a place located somewhere more tropical and warmer (as the Papa John’s delivery guy goes slip-slidin’ away in his smart car), I was thinking of it in terms as a metaphor of the pool of humanity – things that are yet to be thought of and dreamed of. From the forthcoming NoV album, as yet untitled, in October/November this year…

Until next time…

santa-fe_5Another Day in Paradox,” the third album from Nights on Venus is available on CD and as digital download (MP3) as are the eponymously-titled first album (digital download only) and “In 4 the Evening” on CDBaby, iTunes, Bandcamp, Amazon, eMusic, and other fine online retailers including the NoV website

"Another Day in Paradox" - 2013
“Another Day in Paradox” – 2013

Follow Craig and NoV on Twitter (@xlntsky) and Facebook.

new year, new songs… “heliotropic” and “blue mountains walking”…

2014... Abyss Lake from the top of Mt. Evans. Photo by Jon Kedrowski.
Abyss Lake from the top of Mt. Evans. Photo by Jon Kedrowski.

2014… the new year. Hope yours has gotten off to a great, rockin’ start. 12 days in, things have been somewhat uneventful aside from a short trip to Santa Fe to ring in the new year (a few pictures below). Also have already learned a new term: ‘polar vortex’; I expect there will be a movie of the same name on the SyFy channel in the near future.

I’m posting a couple of new songs here, recorded in the last three months, closing out 2013. I can say that there will be a new album from Nights on Venus in 2014 – I don’t know yet whether it will be a full-length album or a couple of 5-song EPs, but there will be at least one release, most likely in the fall.

HELIOTROPIC
(© 2013 Nights on Venus/Craig C. Thomas. All rights reserved.)

The new material is just starting to come together. This is always the fun part, when the first exploratory musical wanderings (a.k.a. “noodling”) and recordings begin to coalesce and gel into ‘something.’

One thing I’ve noticed so far: I’m playing a lot more piano – electronic though it may be (a Roland digital piano) – on these new recordings and it is featured on both of the songs posted here. Both are mastered demos so there will be a few tweaks between now and the released versions. Enjoy!

BLUE MOUNTAINS WALKING
(© 2013 Nights on Venus/Craig C. Thomas. All rights reserved.)

Currently I’m working on a song entitled “Infinity Pool” which I’ll post here probably later on this month.

San Francisco St., Santa Fe...
Hangin’ out on San Francisco St., Santa Fe…
Luminarias...
The holiday season is one of the best times to visit Santa Fe… the lights and luminarias were still up.
The Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi...
The Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi…
The Plaza at night, holiday season...
And the Plaza at night, downtown…
And another visit to 10,000 Waves on a chilly afternoon...
Another visit to 10,000 Waves Japanese bathhouse on a chilly afternoon…
I-25 near Wagon Mound, New Mexico...
On the road again, the return trip home… I-25 near Wagon Mound, New Mexico…
A short 2 hours later...
A short 2 hours later… the weather has turned nasty – freezing drizzle, then snow – and we’re stuck in an hour-long traffic standstill south of Colorado Springs. Numerous accidents when the road turned icy. Here, a moving van has overturned and spilled its contents all over the highway.
Almost home...
What is usually a routine 6-hour drive turned into 9-hour ordeal, but here we’re almost home…

santa-fe_5Until next time…

Another Day in Paradox,” the third album from Nights on Venus is available on CD and as digital download (MP3) as are the eponymously-titled first album (digital download only) and “In 4 the Evening” on CDBaby, iTunes, Bandcamp, Amazon, eMusic, and other fine online retailers including the NoV website

"Another Day in Paradox" - 2013
“Another Day in Paradox” – 2013

Follow Craig and NoV on Twitter (@xlntsky) and Facebook.

excursions in sound and consciousness with the band Nights on Venus

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