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Bob Quinn, Songmaker / Blog

1_50 Missing in Action

Hi friends, I'm still here...I know I missed a week. Last week was a busy one, my eldest son joined us here, so it was all about collecting him at the airport and getting settled in. He found a job in just 4 days! Last weekend, thanks to my friend Dan, we went to EMP museum here in Seattle, my son is also a musical guy, guitarist drummer, and songwriter and this place is all about music. As you may know Jimi Hendrix, Curt Cobain, Sound Garden etc. all hail from here, and the EMP museum has dedicated areas for all of these folks. It was great fun to see pieces of Hendrix's smashed guitars in glass cases, as well as Cobain's Mosrite Guitar and all the other cool grunge stuff. The building is a Frank Gehry concoction...so that was fun for me too. They have little studio rooms with guitars and Drum sets where you can play for 10 minutes....so we, my son and I, did and it was fun...I'm not an electric player, but I was transported back to my teen years with a Stratocaster and a Marshal stack. It was fun to play with my son in his drummer mode . The Space Needle is just next door...so we went and perused the gift shop. The line was too long to go up in the thing, and they wanted near 20 bucks a head to do so, so we passed on it. It's a funny thing for me...I was 8 years old when the Space Needle was built, and I remember all the hype and hoopla regarding the Seattle Worlds Fair in 1962. All the great ideas, the lovely Jetson's architecture, the monorail, and all the progress we were to see in the 21rst century. Recently, I heard the comedian Lewis Black speak of this as well; he said the 21rst Century so far is just the 20th century all over again...sad but true. The shining ideals, the progress of mankind, the advances of science, all lost to the robber barons once again, and now we repeat the struggles of labor, the crusades, and fight once again the bankers who steal it all and send progress of our country up the chimney to the 1 percent. Yawn, pretty sad business. That sparkling monorail car from 1962 , looks like a sad and withered sci-fi prop nowadays. I miss the hopeful joy and innocent thoughts of how far along we'd be as a country in the 21rst century, where's Daffy Duck, aka "Duck Dodgers" when you need him? In the meantime I'm nursing my playing arm...too much computer work , and as always, I'm a mad man on the guitar...I love it too much. See you next week, gotta call my Mom now. Thanks for following along!

1_49 STELLA!

Hi friends, I'm all achy-breaky tonight. Yes we traveled down to Vancouver yesterday, rented a 17 ft. truck, loaded up the whole storage unit and drove it all up here to Kent, WA. This morning, unloaded all of it into a new storage unit, and turned the truck back in. Its just 8:30pm and I'm wasted tired...gonna need to hit the hay soon. So all of our stuff is up here in WA now. I'm glad that little chore is finally done! Realized I had a headlight out in my little car today. Stopped in at Jiffy Lube, and while they replaced the headlight, we cruised a Goodwill store...found a nice little Stella H929...it's in good shape and it's an old one. This place sells everything by the pound, so I paid $5.24 for the thing. Near as I can figure it's early 50's...or possibly earlier. Needs a nut and some tuning machines...then we'll string her up..lucky find! Notable news, my cousin John is home from his long hospital stay. Here's to a speedy recovery! My mom has returned from her European riverboat trip through the Eastern Block Countries, and she's home in good shape aside from a bad case of jet lag, and my eldest son arrives here in Seattle on Thursday to stay and make a new chapter for himself here in town. I'm a happy guy..I haven't seen him in a few years, and it will be wonderful to have him close by. Bit by bit we're taking hold here...songwriting will resume. My recording project will happen..Plans to meet with my recording engineer friend Jordan again next weekend to further that along. OK then, thanks for following along...more coming!

1_48 60 Years Old Now

Hi friends. It's my 60th birthday today! So I've enjoyed a few selfish pleasures this weekend. Janeane was working the phones to aid in getting out the vote, so I had a few hours on my own Saturday. We're living south of the city center of Seattle, but there's this guitar shop up in Seattle...Dusty Strings, so I pulled it together and went for a visit. Seattle proper is very dense, everything is really tightly packed together..hard to find parking etc. But the shop was great. I played the heck out of a couple of new Martin Guitars, and really enjoyed the place. The folks there were kind and friendly fellow musician types. I made it home again without getting too lost, and in the process drove by the famous Space Needle, so now I've been to Seattle. I've been up into the city 4 times now...getting pretty bold LOL! Today I went to spend a few hours with my recording engineer friend, and we worked on another four of my songs. Jordan...you're keeping me alive my friend. Thank you! It's great to be working with you. Funny that he lives in the same area I explored on Saturday...strange serendipity. In the meantime it's back to saving the world tomorrow...according the the UN Report on Climate Change...fossil fuels need to end ASAP...I'm happy to be a small part of the turning. I'll be back to my role as "truck driver" next weekend. We'll be renting yet another truck and heading down to Vancouver again to empty the 2nd storage unit and haul it all up here to the new storage space. This will be the big stuff..furniture etc. I'll be glad to have this done, and have our stuff close at hand. Once Janeane is working, then we'll think about finding a place, but for now the Golden Kent Motel is working out just fine. Expecting the arrival of my eldest son up here mid November, he'll be staying with us until he can find work and pull it all together. I haven't seen him in 3 years or so. It will be great to have him near again. Cousin John is getting better every day...my thoughts are with him wishing a speedy recovery and quick return to the business of his life! Thanks for reading along and..more coming next week! A special thanks to my beautiful mom..thanks for giving me life, and thanks for your wonderful company..have a great time!

1_47 Follow the Light

Hi Friends, OK I'm late...yep the day job is nippin' at my heels as usual. It's still all about moving..all of our stuff is stored in 2 storage units down in Vancouver WA, and we've been down there 2 or 3 times now sorting and organizing things in preparation to move it up here. This weekend, we rented a 14' UHaul truck and moved everything out of one of the units. Little did I realize that a tropical storm was brewing out in the Pacific just off the coast. Well, did I tell you that it rains in Washington? Yep it rained like hell...the Saturday night run up from Vancouver had me running the wipers on high speed, and that was barely keeping up! The truckers were down to 50 MPH..it was a 3 hour ride through the dark tunnel...just follow the light they say...Got it all moved into a new storage unit just up the street from our current location. 1 down, 1 to go. I've got all my music gear at hand now. I've just got to find a reasonable space to rent where I can work...another day. In the meantime my eldest son will be coming up here to stay in 2 weeks or so...I'll be helping him along as I can until he can stand on his own. He's a capable fellow...should do fine up here. My cousin I hear is continuing to improve, He's out of intensive care, and getting better...so thankful for him and our family. Life is precious. My Odometer is going to flip to my sixth decade in a few days. I plan the be playing music that day with my recording engineer friend. I'm thankful for his presence...he's keeping me motivated through this fog of work. Still playing strong, and little by little we're getting our footing here. It just feels like it's taking forever!..OK then, more coming. Thanks for reading along.

NorthernBandit / Burt K. Arthur
NorthernBandit / Burt K. Arthur  (28 days ago)

Hey Bob...glad to hear you doin ok! I know what you mead, I just flipped 61k in September and feel good about the mileage...Sad to hear my Bass guitar, Vocal, Cello Songwriter Idol Jack Bruce has gone to the great beyond. I am saddened that his body failed him but then we are but mortal...his spirit will live on in me for eternity! Glad that you will stop and play your guitar and enjoy the company of a fellow musician friend! Need to stay connected. Something I have not been good at doing. Peace to you and keep us posted as to you new ventures in music eah?

Bob Quinn, Songmaker
Bob Quinn, Songmaker  (23 days ago)

Hi Burt, thank you...yes I'm trying to stay connected. It's a new story unfolding up here, and I realize it's going to take some time to get the muses aligned. Things are moving along..albeit slowly...it's like watching the grass grow...next thing you know...you've got a lawn! Yes, Jack Bruce...there's a part of history it's sad to watch passing...I need to listen again to "theme from an imaginary western" was always a favorite. Thanks Burt!

1.46_Burnin' Low

Yeah, I missed a week. The candle was burning low...a few days of reflection. The work I'm doing is keeping me from the work I need to be doing. I don't mind a compromise, hell I'm willing to go 60/40...but to take it all? Not at all sure how this will play out. I need time to be creative. Time to do my writing,. The time and a place to record my demo tunes. When I'm disconnected from what energizes me....I start going numb, and my life force goes dim. The good news this week is... today I met with my recording engineer friend at Empty Sea Studios here in Seattle, took the nickel tour of the place, then he and I spent 3.5 hours working together on 4 of my songs with him playing a number of instruments, trying on different sounds. A few Mandolins, as well as an upright bass. It's wonderful to have the interest and support of another creative spirit in my songs. Gaining balance between the day job, and the recording work is key...I don't know yet how to get there. We'll see in the coming weeks what comes along. In other news, my eldest son came off of his band tour and landed back in the SF Bay area without a nickel to his name. We helped out as we could, and fortunately, he hooked up with a friend who delivered him back to southern CA. He'll make due around there for a time and then we'll have a better shot at organizing his arrival up here. So as of today, my sons are safe, and my music has a heartbeat again. I have a cousin in AZ, he suffered a bad spill riding his mountain bike...people wear a helmet! He is certainly a beloved family member. His injuries are serious..3 weeks in intensive care. He's making good progress. He's certainly in my thoughts, and I wish him a speedy recovery. Life is precious..time is precious. We're focusing over the next 3 weeks on bringing our stuff up from storage in Vancouver, to our location here in Kent WA. Did the round trip drive yesterday, and will do so for the next few weekends running. The 8th of November, we'll rent a truck and bring up the balance.Too all of you whom I typically keep in contact with...I'm still around...just working 10-11-12 hour days...I haven't forgotten you. Flickering...more next week.

Myran Wahlstream
Myran Wahlstream  (about 1 month ago)

There's a lot in this, that can be lyrics to songs.

NorthernBandit / Burt K. Arthur
NorthernBandit / Burt K. Arthur  (about 1 month ago)

Hey Bob it's Burt...Life is a never ending highway...I think that was a theme for Gordon Lightfoot or Jim Croce...all of our theme. It is the Journey my friend as you well know, you have the reins...Ye Ha Rawhide!

1.44_Walk Hard

Yeah, we walked hard today and covered about 6 miles or so along the Green River trail here in Kent Washington. I'm all worn out...but we walked hard. Not a lot to tell on the music front this week. Working up to spending some quality time in the studio...but that's looking like a short/long term goal. Now, we're largely scheming on getting our stuff up here. Everything we own is in 2 storage units down in Vancouver. Made a reservation for a 10x30' unit at a storage facility just up the street, one we can walk to. So next week, we'll pay for it...then over a the next 3 or four weekends we'll be making one day trips, filling up both cars and hauling stuff up here...the final trip in early November will be renting a truck and driving the big stuff up here. It's about 150 miles from Vancouver to Kent. From there, the focus will be on the both of us finding work spaces for doing what we love. Janeane for her fabric design work, and a small studio-office for me. We can live in the Kent Motel forever I suppose! In other news, my eldest son is coming off his national tour with his band, and will be joining us here in Seattle in 2 or 3 weeks. I haven't seen him in 3 years...it will be a real gift to have him nearby. In the meantime...getting a real education at the solar shop, and I'm enjoying the guys I'm working with. Just finishing a biography on Crazy Horse. It's all about his life, and the coming of the white man. Manifest destiny they called it. This stuff if still going on in the world. the middle east, and here...our "democracy" taken over by corporations and plutocrats. Is this our Manifest Destiny? What will the plutocrats do with all of us..we are more than they. What then if Chief Pontiac had been successful? More next week!

1.43_Lost Boys and Girls

Hi Friends, Sunday night now here in Seattle WA. We've just returned from a weekend trip to Vancouver WA where our stuff is stored. We re-arranged 2 storage units today. In the coming weeks, we'll rent another unit up here in Kent, rent a truck and bring it all up here. Another busy, busy week at the solar shop. I'm working with spread sheets!!! Arghhhhh I never thought LOL! It's all good but very busy. I met with our fine fellow, the aforementioned Recording Engineer. We had a great but short meeting, and it looks like things are going to begin moving forward again pretty soon. We'll begin with me playing my songs for him and he jumping in with mandolin or one of the many other instruments he plays. We'll get mutually acquainted with my songs and work forward from there. There was some talk of recording them live with a group of musicians...sounds pretty wonderful to me. So, I'm thrilled about the prospects...next Sunday may be a musical meeting, we'll see. In the meantime, the car overheated on the way home on Friday. So, she's sitting outside the mechanics shop around the corner. Things aren't so bad for me...around here there are lots of spaces overgrown with trees and blackberry bushes. Seemingly inaccessible. But down every rabbit trail, every hidie hole...there are campers. People living in the brush in primitive conditions..we stumbled into one of these abandoned camps last weekend on our hike along the Green River trail. A clearing in the brambles, some pallets, a frying pan hanging from a tree branch...a lot of trash. Haunting images of life for those fallen through the cracks. Lost boys and girls. And winter approaches. A small prayer for they, who make their way just under the radar of this crazy culture. A small prayer for us all in the time of the predator.

Brenda Ross
Brenda Ross  (about 1 month ago)

Hello Bob; glad you are getting settled in. I pray as you do for all those homeless people as winter sets in soon. I pray God will give spread a blanket of love and grace over them and keep them warm and fed. Most of all I pray God will let them see him in their lives. Blessings to you Bob. Brenda Ross

1.42_September 29th

Hello friends. Sunday again. This week's been much like the last. working long hours. The solar shop is doing really well and it's been keeping me hopping. I'm yet becoming acquainted with the rhythms of this place. I'm told we'll be going onto 40 hour weeks starting the Monday of September 29th. That's great to know. Already the changing season is making it's presence known. It's getting dark earlier, and the deciduous trees are starting to turn. Going to be time to switch over to the winter hat soon. I'm going through my songs now, finding new chord voicings, new timings, etc. Generally polishing things up. Not much to report on the writing front. I've been switched off for a time with all the moving around throughout the summer. Starting to feel some rumblings of ideas though. I'll get that engine running again soon. No meeting last week with my recording engineer...postponed to sometime this week. I'm anxious to meet with this fellow...looking forward to gaining insights about how to move the process forward. In the meantime, as the evenings open a bit I'll keep working my songs up toward playing out. I'll be hitting the open mics as soon as I can. For now life and work go on. Thanks for following along!

1.41_With the Muses

Here it is Sunday again. I'm hoping to meet this week with my recording engineer acquaintance, we've been trading emails for a week or 2 now. Last night, I finally felt comfortable enough about our situation to break open the old leather satchel containing my song notebooks, and I started to work on reviving 3 of them. It's a new energy now. I have a more developed ear, and I'm able to hear them all more clearly after the time away. Work continues to be the dominating force in my life right now, but it was so good to get together with my old self for a few hours last night. I worked on 3 songs for 2 hours and found some spots where I was able to improve phrasing, chord work, and timing. It feels great to be in contact with my muses again! So it begins...I'll continue to get these songs into working condition again as time allows and hopefully we'll have a chance to visit the open mics, as well as the recording studio in the coming weeks. The Golden Kent Motel continues to be a good home for us for now. The Seattle story is only just beginning to open. When we have some idea of where Janeane will be working, then we'll again to attempt to rent a space for ourselves to live in beyond this motel. I'm looking around for a little office space I can work in for a while...there's one just up the street I'll be calling on soon. In the meantime, the 5 O-Clock alarm looms for tomorrow and the days beyond. Rest is a precious commodity these days. I'm preparing as I can, and ever hopeful to resume the work as soon as possible. See you next week!

1.40_Lookin' At An Empty Sea

Hello friends, we're enjoying Kent WA, and the Golden Kent Motel! Last weekend, I answered a Craigslist ad posted by a recording engineer. We've been chatting through the week and it turns out that he's a staff engineer at Empty Sea Studios. http://www.emptysea.com/ EmptySea inhabits an old converted house in a northern Seattle neighborhood. EmptySea is also a small and beautiful performance space dedicated to Acoustic Music. I'm really looking forward to visiting the studio and attending some of the shows! So the conversation continues, and hopefully I can break away for an introductory meeting with this fellow as soon as time allows. In the meantime...it's time to pull out the old leather satchel with all of my songs, dust it off and start getting re-acquainted with my muses. With a bit of luck, and if my employment situation holds, we'll be in the studio in early fall...to once again...get back to the microphones. In the day job...which is a way of life now...things are still thundering forward. There's no way to know for sure, but there have been hints that we'll return to a 40 hour work week sometime in October. Once that happens.I'll be looking to hit the open mics as well. I'm really looking forward to whatever the Seattle story will be musically. There are a lot of talented people here...it's going to be a wonderful tale as it unfolds. My eldest son is on tour with his band, and it warms my heart to see him doing what he loves to do. My younger is doing demonstration drawings in 3-D Max, and Z-Brush on the internet, doing his character design work. Both my boys are growing into their passions. I'm blessed with all the friends I'm finding on Reverbnation...so many talented, and warm souls. You know who you are! I'm forever reading biographies of songwriters and I just finished Carole King's "Natural Woman" wow...what a writer she is...so many many hit songs! It's such an inspiration to me to read of these peoples lives and their paths. Summer is enjoying it's last gasp here in Washington this weekend with temps in the low 90's...I thought we left all of that in New Mexico? I'm told it's going to rain soon...OK then, thanks for reading along. More to come next week!