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Friday, December 20, 2019

Remarkably and more...

Just listened to this little piece I put together last Lee Ann's birthday. The refrain is the title of her mythological memoir, which she will likely never write, and the tattoo she will likely never write.
Kinda fun, created on my iPhone on a dog walk and recorded at our breakfast island on my laptop with Audacity on a vintage nylon string Framus guitar. I particularly like the improvised break, recorded with no real planning in one take. I think it's kind of Willie Nelson-ish. Okay then. Stay tuned after for a handful of Colin's demo recordings.

and happy holidays:

Sunday, November 17, 2019

Sunday, November 17

Hey, world,

Okay, I'm not the most prolific blogger anymore. I call to attention some past performance:

From May 21, 2007:

This was probably my most prolific blog. Now I'm so into my classroom and its execution and planning that I'm not using the blogging outlet much. But it's all good. Anyone with curiosity and wherewithal can discover past work.

As far as present work, I got notice last week from the indefatigable Simon at ISTE PLNs that my proposal to present an ISTE Expert Webinar in January or February (stay tuned) has been accepted. I will be presenting on my implementation of a Minecraft unit for my 200+ largely EL students at the  thriving but under-resourced public middle school where I teach. Yay. Get a glimpse of that work at .

Oh, and another ISTE note, Andy and I had a GREAT convo last week with Daniela Sanchez from the new VR world VirBELA. You can expect more from that soon, perhaps including an ISTE VEN Winter Conference online in that venue!

Sunday, October 20, 2019

Happy Birthday, Lee Ann

Today is my beloved's birthday. Yesterday, because of an annual neighborhood festival called Light the Nations, I gave her an early birthday present that I found at the Tennessee Arts and Crafts Fair a couple weeks ago. It's a set of white silver dangly earrings made by Louisville, KY Silver Smith, Phyllis Minnery. They positively light up in natural sunlight.

Lee Ann, on the other hand, has lit up my life in so many ways for the past 35+ years that I can't begin to enumerate them. Hers is the heart that makes my heart sing. Literally.

In honor of her birthday and of that little light metaphor, I share a little ditty I composed and recorded for the occasion. Please enjoy...

Sunday, September 29, 2019

Monday, September 16, 2019

AmericanaFest2019 through mine eyes

Mine eyes have seen the glory...

I had an absolute BLAST going out to hear live performances of music all week, thanks to AmericanaFest2019. Initially, my lovely person was planning to take a highly unusual week off from her fantastic business, Tinwings, to go stay at a beach home in Pawley's Island with a dear friend. I discovered Americana Fest and thought, well, okay, I'll go hear some music while she's gone. The week changed due to her friend's schedule and I was about to bail, but Lee Ann told me, hey, do it anyway. So I did!

I sprung the 90+ dollars for a wristband that would get me into any of the shows at any of the venues I chose to attend Tuesday, September 10 through today, Sunday the 15th. It was fun to hear moving lyrics sung by brilliant songwriter/performers every night at many Nashville locations, some of which I'd never attended. See the list of performers in this graphic:

 go there

What was my favorite part? Wow. That's a tough one. I would say it's that I got myself out, met some nice humans, and formed some new fan relationships with a double handful of talented people some of whom I'd never heard of! I saw some acquaintances perform, including another former student from my first 3rd grade class in 1996-7. You may recall my good fortune to meet up with Lizzy Plotkin at the end of last May.

I thoroughly enjoyed Shawn Colvin's work as she performed her breakthrough record "Steady On" from top to bottom, just her and her acoustic guitar. And to witness Mark Erelli's award-nominated "By Degrees" sung by him the same way at a venue new to me, The Anchor, was unforgettable.

This time it was the incredibly talented Forrest O'Conner I got to see perform at One in Cannery Row performing an intimate set with Kate Lee and others. 

It was a fun week and I'll be back next year, "believe it to me."

Sunday, August 25, 2019

Droning on a Saturday Morning

This may be a fun before and after in a year or so. This is the former home of Renaissance Stone and a couple other very small business endeavors, and if recent huge residential building in the area is any indication, we'll be seeing at least hundreds of new homes built. It would be possible, actually, to extend New York Avenue from its end place at 59th Avenue (straight ahead at the video's beginning) to 60th, at the video's end; but I'd be surprised if that happens, considering the profit value of each square foot of residential property in The Nations.

Edited in Screencast-O-Matic Pro. Music from an online album of rough acoustic instrumentals, "Still Waiting." Song is "Colin's Walk." Enjoy...

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Living Proof, 1983

Hey all,

Yes we're sneaking up on the school year and teachers report in my district just two weeks from today. Hard to believe, but while I do wish for more summer there is a nagging excitement about getting back into the computer lab with a new batch of 5th graders and many children I will recognize and who will recognize me. We're in July 30 for meetings and prep and such and the kids show up Monday, August 5th.

Meanwhile, I'm finishing up some music and fishing and fun goals I set for myself before returning to school. One is sharing the one tiny tv work that I did back in 1982 or so, released as an NBC TV Movie in 1983, and though I only worked three days or so and only appear in this last 3 1/2 minutes of the movie, I some pretty good camera time and I hope that you can tell that I was having fun. At the time I was bartending at TGIFridays on Elliston Place. I recall that I answered a casting call and auditioned for the roll of the doctor who patches up Hank Williams, Jr. after his drunken fall from a mountaintop. That would have paid more, I suppose, but I'm glad I was invited to audition for the band members for the two bands at the end of the movie. I recall Richard Thomas and the casting directors out in front in a warehouse-like space with 20 or 30 aspiring musicians and that when it was my turn to step up to the mic I sang "Rollin' in my Sweet Baby's Arms." They actually allowed me to finish and called the next day to make me an offer. We filmed in what is now the Children's Theater, I'm pretty sure, then in TPAC's Jackson Theater.

Here's the thing: With the ongoing national dialog about the South and its perpetuation of myths about the racism that was essential to the notion of "Dixie," this song actually makes me a bit uncomfortable. As a supporter of both the American Civil Liberties Union and the Southern Poverty Law Center, I believe there's a New Dixie out there that can embrace all of us, no matter what race or creed. And I don't believe that New York City is anything close to a synonym for Hell. All that said, at the oblivious time of the filming, it was fun. I'll struggle to rectify these dichotomous things, in my daily work and in my personal heart, but meanwhile I hope you can enjoy...

Remarkably and more...

Just listened to this little piece I put together last Lee Ann's birthday. The refrain is the title of her mythological memoir, which sh...