Wanna Play Along? (c’mon you do)

Interesting meetings coming up… Interesting questions being asked… As always I’ll tell you more when I’m able to tell you more… But for now, if you want to play along… I’m going to ask a series of questions… And I’d love your answers and thoughts… Longer answers can be put in the comment section below.

– Quiche Out

(CHOOSE as many from each as you feel apply)

Your Name Here?

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Sometimes I wonder if I’m wasting a good portion of my life, and have to much free time…

Then I go into a public restroom where some mental-midget has carved their name into the toilet seat. And others of less intellect and creativity considered this a good usage of time and followed suit.

It’s at points like this I realize how good my life must be…

So smile! Though you may not be where you want to be, or you’re stuck in a job you don’t like, at least you think enough of yourself not to waste your time destructing property and wanting the squashed asses of John Q Public defecating on you.

– Quiche Out

A BRIGHTER FUTURE POSSIBLE?

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Okay, I didn’t watch this particular video the first five times I recently saw it posted on social media, but I just did… And after watching a particular documentary, two days ago, about other ways were killing our own ecosystems, poisoning water with “our” pursuit for fossil fuel… This video actually gives me hope that perhaps there will be a BRIGHTER and CLEANER future.

I don’t have any vested interest in this particular company, but wish that all corporations, governments, humankind, and VOTERS would make cleaner choices. There is only so much clean water on this planet… There is no way to pollute only part of the atmosphere… How much life (human, plant, fish and animal) has already been mutated, killed or poisoned by corporate moguls and corrupt politicians in pursuit of profits.

If you had a punch bowl filled with water, and seconds before you were about to ladle yourself out a cup to drink, you watched someone put drops of arsenic and cyanide in the bowl, but on the far side, across from you, would you still drink the water? Would you give a glass to your children? To your children’s children?

Several years ago I hiked part of the Appalachian Trail which traveled through a “Superfund Site.” The area had previously been poisoned by a zinc smelting plant, and the experience disgusted and stained me forever. Just after college, I white-water rafted down a “dead-river,” where I found out, while in the water, that all life within it had been killed by the runoff of local mining…

I don’t want to swim or drink from a toilet. I don’t want to breathe or hike thru toxic fumes. For Christ-sake, whatever happened to leaving a place better than when we found it? Whatever happened to common sense? To cleaning up after oneself? The older I get, the more I wonder, if the Amish are the wisest of us all. Where a horse fart is the worst possible emission.

“No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.” – Matthew 6:24

– Quiche Out

First here’s the video I watched a few days ago, which depressed the heck out of me… There are plenty of documentaries that show how we are literally killing life as we know it on this planet…. LINK: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YkwoRivP17A

And here’s the video that made me think that maybe mankind is capable of better and cleaner things… LINK: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qlTA3rnpgzU

Gordon Willis Anecdote

— Upon reading about Gordon Willis death, I posted the following on Facebook this morning. Posted here for those of you that are on there.

LINK: http://variety.com/2014/film/news/the-godfather-cinematographer-gordon-willis-dies-at-82-1201185649/

 

“I met him in NYC, one of my very few gigs as a stand in. Over the course of my time on set, he dropped a bunch of gems I learned from… I believe I even picked up a book where he discussed lighting soon after…

However, my favorite quote of the day was… As I was in some sort of odd position, holding it, as people were adjusting light stands… He looked at me and uttered…

“Hell of a way to spend a day, huh?”

And that stuck with me…”

– Quiche Out

Billy Joel @ Hollywood Bowl – Thank you Billy Joel

10310960_10152210536288842_5347088195700475043_nFirst off… Thank you Billy Joel.

Secondly, to the rest of you, this isn’t a review… And if you’re afraid of reading a spoiler… Stop reading.

Generally, I haven’t been much of a fan of being part of an audience… Crowds. Tight seats. My size (feel like I’m blocking everyone). Bathroom lines. Traffic. Overpriced beverages, parking, tickets… And the first concert I ever went to was sort of a let down (Van Halen), where I had more fun during intermission where I could talk with my friends and when paper-airplanes were being made and tossed throughout the stadium, even though I was a big fan of their music…

Since then I could probably count all the concerts that I’ve bought tickets to on one finger… Billy Joel at the Bowl (May 17th). That’s not to say I haven’t seen a bunch… Comps. Gifts. Walk ins. And work.

When working behind the bars at the Beacon Theater twenty years ago I caught snippets of many acts, and while catering in The Hamptons, New York City, and Beverly Hills, I saw many private concerts… Including Betty Buckley and Jerry Orbach singing at a piano in an amazing apartment on the Upper East Side, and Sting playing songs off a new album at a pool party thrown by MTV. I think I was working at the Beverly Hills Hotel a night Prince played, but I guess I was on a different party, because I don’t have the memory other than I think I was working there… I even brushed shoulders with Billy Joel at Christie Brinkley’s Bridgehampton wedding in ’96, the same day I had my first and only taste of Cristal… Taking a swig for an open bottle after we closed the bar.

Anyway, I’ve long since been a fan of Billy Joel’s music… Can’t say every popular song of his (We Didn’t Start the Fire & Uptown Girl), but overall… You know, I once asked a question to people on my social media what they felt the musical difference between Billy Joel and Elton John was… And while I got many great answers… I realized my own answer… For most Elton John songs, when it comes on the radio I think, “what a great song,” and then most of the times I change the station… But with many Billy Joel songs, I think, “what a great song,” and then I turn it up and sing along… I don’t know why that is, it just is. Maybe it’s the perceived personal truth and rawness in the songs. Again, I really don’t know.

Yet it’s funny, while I’ve sung several Billy Joel songs in piano bars, I covered an Elton John song in my closet before tackling a Billy Joel song in there.

Okay, I’m way off topic…

Years ago I made a promise to myself, if Billy Joel ever played at a small venue, or a venue I liked, I would break my long tradition of not paying for tickets and being part of the audience… I would go. While I’m not a fan of sitting in crowded rows… I love learning… And couldn’t imagine NOT learning something from such an artist. And so… When I heard he would be playing at the Hollywood Bowl, I was online with my credit card, thirty-minutes before they went on sale, just to make sure the process would go smoothly.

It’s funny, yesterday I worked as an actor on a huge national commercial, featuring a Super Bowl champion, something most people in Los Angeles would kill for, yet my biggest concern was whether or not I’d make it to the show starting at 8 PM…

And not only did I make it, but I had time to go home and shower too!

I was extremely excited to be there, with my friend… Enjoying a picnic in our nearly empty row… But honestly, when the music started… And the seats filled up… Being crammed, sitting next to a pot smoker, and in front of a guy that believed he knew everything Billy Joel would do, and say… I fell back to my belief, that I’d rather be working or listening while doing some thing myself.

One by one “the expert” behind me, was wrong… From the opening song selection, to each next song that Billy would play, all the way to last words he predicted Billy would utter before the concert ended…

And when Billy Joel asked the crowd which song we wanted to hear… Either Vienna or Summer Highland Falls… I bellowed so loudly, three rows in front of me went deaf. VIENNA!

It was then that I was happy to be there… Vienna was one of the songs I went in wanting to hear. Maybe because it’s one of his songs I’m considering singing myself some day… Maybe it’s because I felt like we, the audience, had made a difference to the performance of the night (I’m sure it was designed that way)… Maybe it’s because I had enough second-hand pot smoke… Maybe…

I had a great time… My friend danced in her seat and she soon had me singing along, and doing my best I-can’t-move-my-arms-from-my-sides shuffle, bob, bounce, nod and weave…

As amazing as I would imagine it would be to be Billy Joel, to be that loved, that admired, that well paid, a thought crossed my mind… I wonder if there’s a part of him that misses being an unknown, playing in small piano bars… Where he knows “John” the bartender and the waitress who practices politics… To have the experiences of the struggle, and to write from those places… I mean, yeah, all those people facing you, and echoing back your words must be powerful and I can’t imagine how glorious it must be… But I wonder.

Anyway, thank you Billy Joel for writing much of the sound track of my past… For playing many of those same songs last night… Thank you for making “the expert” behind me, wrong time after time… Thank you for such great lyrics, stories and music… For your on stage persona… Your (seemingly) honest and raw banter… And for choosing to play at the Hollywood Bowl.

Born out of Hackensack…

– Quiche Out

BTW. Billy, if you ever want to slum and “guest” in my closet… LMK.

Link to Audience at Bowl sings along: http://youtu.be/sfPLtGAKH8g

If you’re curious… Billy’s set list (confirmed by Setlist.FM).

 

  1. Miami 2017 (Seen the Lights Go Out on Broadway)
  2. Pressure
  3. Everybody Loves You Now
  4. Vienna (Audience had a choice between this and Summer Highland Falls)
  5. Ballad of Billy the Kid
  6. Zanzibar
  7. The Entertainer
  8. Where’s the Orchestra?
  9. Allentown
  10. Say Goodbye to Hollywood (He said he hadn’t played since the 80’s)
  11. New York State of Mind
  12. Sometimes a Fantasy
  13. Movin’ Out (Anthony’s Song)
  14. Layla (Interlude)
  15. She’s Always a Woman
  16. The River of Dreams / Surfin USA
  17. Scenes From an Italian Restaurant
  18. Piano Man
    ENCORE…
  19. It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me
  20. Big Shot
  21. You May Be Right (With Adam Levin & Dave Johnstone)
  22. Only the Good Die Young

TSA DVD (now available)

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“TSA America” has screened at a few festivals, it screened online to a large paying audience, and now it’s available on DVD…

“Message from MISHA COLLINS – TSA America Screening: Dear Passengers, Thank you again for your support! We wanted to let you know that because of your generosity we’ve raised over $32,000 for Random Acts and virtually guaranteed Misha will continue to create other content like this in the future (apologies or you’re welcome). Speaking of which, If you want to have all 3 shorts for your personal viewing pleasure, you can get a $10 TSA America DVD here – http://www.tsaamerica.com. Ever for your safety and processing, Misha and the TSA America Team”

I do not make anything off of these sales (that I know of)… But, I’m proud of the production, and I know many of you want to check it out… It may be available in other ways in the future, however I have no knowledge of when and where that might be…

BUY: http://tsaamerica.com/collections/frontpage/products/tsa

Pictures first published on Facebook can be found here:
https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10151192148061809.443616.249775181808&type=1

Below I’m re-publishing some of my favorites, as well as some “new” shots you might find interesting as well… Feel free to “share” links to this page, but please do not “borrow” the images without written permission.

– Quiche Out