June 22, 2006

Crimson Envelopes

Hello all. This song is a little older than None So Lovely but it's still pretty new. I think we recorded it a couple months ago. This was one of my attempts at writing a more jazzy, swing-type song. If I remember right, I am playing banjo uke, several guitars, violas, vocals and whislting. Noah's playing piano. Like I said before, it's just a demo and still rough around the edges. But I hope you like it. Please feel free to leave a comment or suggestion.

Crimson Envelopes

All of the colors
Lining the street
Are called into question
Whenever we meet
The sky’s on the screen
But the screen’s on the ground
I’ll catch the train to heaven
Next time in comes around
I’m hopelessly lost
In the metropolis
Of my heart’s hidden highways
I secretly wish
To be free of the traffic
And free of the smoke
Free of the letters
In crimson envelopes

Watching my thoughts
As they played on the lawn
Games without endings
And all wordless songs
Then one thought struck another
I know not what for
But they all got angry
And started a war
Now they’re shouting and fighting
While inside my head
And they’re wounded and bleeding
While others lie dead
And when all of my notions
Have been wiped out
Then I won’t have anything
Left to think about

I search and I question
The things that I loved
My own misconceptions
Can help me recover
From all of the memories
I can’t forget
My conscience yet lingers
In days that I’ve wept
Tearing down the walls
In my fortress of guilt
But the towers I can’t break
Are the very ones I built
I search and I question
What have learned?
All that’s been loaned us

Soon will be returned

June 21, 2006

Birds: Orchard Oriole and Black-billed Cuckoo

I took a trip out to Jordan Road (Cayuga County) this morning for a second look at the Orchard Orioles. I wasn't dissapointed!

There were at least two singing males and one female in the area. It was really a stroke of luck that this guy stayed put long enough for me to set up my scope and camera.

The birds are nesting in the big trees right accross from the entrance to the Cross Lake Marina. While I was on the Oriole I heard a Black-billed Cuckoo calling nearby. Cuckoos can be pretty secretive but I did manage one identifiable shot...

June 20, 2006


Yesterday I was able to relocate the male DICKCISSEL at the Oswego County Airport (Howard Road).

When I arrived at 6:20 AM I kind of doubted the bird would still be around. But within a couple minutes he just appeared out of nowhere and started singing right accross the road.

What a bird!

He moved around a lot, dissapearing for a few minutes and then reappearing some distance away.

Dickcissels are from the mid-West and are a rare visitor to our area. This was a life bird for me (somehow I missed them in Texas) and I was really fortunate to get such a good look.

June 19, 2006

My Greatest Achievement

Well my friends, the time has finally come. After years of toiling away, up the slope of that horrendous mountain known as High School, I believe I have finally reached the summit. I have closed the last book, stopped the last tape, taken my last test and learned my last lesson. The clouds break as my courageous spirit turns to survey the girthitude of my accomplishments. Here I am, where I have striven to be for such years as naught can remember. But does the parting with so old a nemesis not in reality contain a hint of bittersweet? No, it does not. Pure sweety goodness. And to commemorate this joyous occasion I made myself a little reminder. This is my High School Diploma.

June 17, 2006

Mayville Bluegrass Festival

this is an audio post - click to play

June 12, 2006

Baby Birdies!

For the past few weeks I've been watching a
Chipping Sparrow nest in my yard....
Out of the four eggs, two hatched. Here they are after maybe a week or so. Their eyes are still closed. Aren't they cute?!

This is just a few days later. Notice how their feathers have already begun to develop. Like most babies, sleeping and eating seem to be their main concerns.

They look kind of annoyed with me here, don't you think? Seems like they're pretty well feathered at this point and the nest is starting to look a bit crowded.

Later that day they decided to get out on their own. One of them didn't seem to have any trouble flying at all but this guy was still missing a few tail feathers and was in need of some steering practice. Mom and dad were still all over him though so I think he'll be fine. Best of luck little fellas!

June 08, 2006

Wild America

Hello. The weather has been so cool this week. Literally. I don't do well once it hits the mid-80s, especially when it's humid. But lately it's been a nice mix of clouds, rain, some sun and a little breeze. So I'm in a good mood. I thought I'd tell you about the book I'm reading right now. It's called Wild America by Roger Tory Peterson and James Fisher. Sarah gave it to me for Christmas I think, but I've only gotten around to reading just recently. It's great! Peterson is most famous for his various field guides, Fisher is essentially his British counterpart (really into seabirds I guess). Anyway, in 1953 these two guys did a huge tour of North America, mostly centered around birdwatching but incorporating tons of other stuff as well. They were both naturalist in the fullest sense of the word (well, they weren't nudists, but you know what I mean). Birds are just a slice of the pie. They talk about flowers, trees, butterflies, mammals, fish, and bigger topics too like history, geography, population and distribution statistics, human impact on the environment, etc. I know that sounds kind of boring but it's not, trust me. The book's narrative goes back and forth between Fisher's actual journal entries during the trip and Peterson's commentary. They started in Newfoundland and are now in Florida, but I'm only on chapter 11. This was Fisher's first trip to North America and it's really neat to see his reactions to a brand new continent; things that are different, things that are familiar. The book is fascinating not only because a large part of it is about birds but also because of the time it was written. It's cool to hear a "first hand" account of America from 50 years ago. Things have really changed, it's hard to believe it's the same place. So... great book, I highly recommend it. Check it out on Amazon.com here. You might also like to check out Kenn Kaufman's classic Kingbird Highway which is more-or-less along the same lines. Well, I guess that's it for now.

June 05, 2006

New Song

This is a brand new song that Noah and I have been working on. It's just a rough demo, definitely not finished yet. But I thought you might like to hear how it's coming. I am playing banjo, guitar, violas and vocals. Noah sings harmony. Let me know if you like it!

None So Lovely

Oh, love of mine
Oh, love of mine
None so lovely can I find

Darlin, truly
Darlin, truly
You know you mean the world to me

Come, I’ll hold you near
Come, I’ll hold you near
None in all the world so dear

Girl, I love you so
Girl, I love you so
Say that you won’t never go

Love, oh love I sing
Love, oh love I sing
We’ll be married in the spring