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Von Cello 

Post No. 1882
05/01/2008 09:26 AM
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Hey, good point Von Cello! But when you think about it, a surgeon and a traffic cop do things that are not seen by the general public. I guess the cop is public, but he is only seen by the people on his beat, and no one knows what he thinks about anything. Same with the surgeon, and even the architect. We see the building and that gives us some idea about the asthetic of the person, but we don't know their political views. I guess the musician is in a more public platform than most other people except for politicians and actors. So why is the actor not as influential as the musician? Because in most cases they don't write the script.
Von Cello 

Post No. 1881
04/29/2008 08:49 PM
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What is a musician?

Actually, when you think about it, why is it that musicians have any political impact at all? We take it for granted that a John Lennon would sing anti-war songs, that Dylan would write about revolution in the air, that Casals would ring the church bell above his town even though the Nazis banned it, that Beethoven would refuse to get off the street to let nobles pass, that Benny Goodman would cross the color line and have blacks like Lionel Hampton in his band.

Why do people who play music become social catalyst? Why not people who design buildings, or people who perform surgery, or people who direct traffic? Why the musician?
Von Cello 

Post No. 1880
04/29/2008 09:25 AM
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Musician of the Century

I kept thinking if there was another musician who would have been a better choice for musician of the century. Hendrix was a great guitarist, Parker was a great saxophonist, Heifitz was a great violinist, but Casals had more influence politically. His opposition to the dictator of Spain was open and vocal. And his boycott of most of the world was legendary. Did any of these other musicians have such impact and take such risk?

But then one musician stuck out in my head who could rival Casals. Do you know who? John Lennon! We forget about the influence he had, and also the risks that he took. In fact, many people believe he was assassinated (like JFK and MLK). So maybe he should be the musician of the century.

It could be argued that he was nowhere near the instrumentalist that Casals was. Surely he could not play a Bach sonata or a Beethoven concerto. But then again, Casals could not compose a melody with anywhere near the grace and beauty of some of John's.

What do you think? Who would you nominate as the "Musician of the Century" for the last century?
Von Cello 

Post No. 1879
04/28/2008 09:41 AM
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Casals Castles

I forget which record company it was but toward the end of the 20th century they came out with something like a 10 record box set called, "Pablo Casals - The Musician of the Century". Could you imagine being picked out as THE musician of a century? What an honor.

I suppose they could have picked Jimi Hendrix, or Elvis, or better yet John Coltrane or Charlie Parker. Other picks could have been Miles Davis, Jascha Heifitz, or Leonard Bernstein. The list goes on and on, so how do you pick one?

I think they picked Casals because of two things. One is the way he revolutionized the cello. He was the man most responsible for bringing this instrument to the fore. He was the first cello soloist who could really rival the great violinists. He traveled the world for years on trains and planes spreading his new concept. And it wasn't just how well he played, but the emotion that came through his instrument. There is not another musician in our time who could grab your heart and twist it the way he could. He had a very powerful soul and he could reach you with music as if it were a lazar beam.

The other reason I think they picked him is his mensch-like qualities. He was very vocal about his opposition to the Axis powers in WW II, particularly Franco, who took over Spain. Casals actually risked his life by being so outspoken, but he would not stop. Then after the war he boycotted any country that recognized Spain under Franco, which meant that the most famous cellist in the world basically stopped performing. In fact, he never played in the United States again. He did, however. play at the U.N. when he was in his nineties, because the U.N. is technically not part of the United States. He remained virtually unheard of for decades until some younger classical soloists went to see him and got him to agree to host a music festival where he lived in Prades. He later held festivals in Puerto Rico. It is the recordings from these festivals that I have been checking out again. And I must say, there has never been better music making anywhere at any time.

Post No. 1878
04/28/2008 08:06 AM
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Yeah, Casals - a great example to us! And not only as a cellist, or a musician - but more - a Mensch, maybe.

Hey, interesting, that Yiddicizing s/w - although I know no people who speak or use Yiddish (to understand, I usually 'reconstruct' it from Hebrew and Dutch and German ).

Post No. 1877
04/28/2008 08:01 AM
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Yeah, Casals - a great example to us! And not only as a cellist, or a musician - but more - a Mensch, maybe.

Hey, interesting, that Yiddicizing s/w - although I know no people who speak or use Yiddish (to understand, I usually 'reconstruct' it from Hebrew and Dutch and German ).

Post No. 1876
04/27/2008 02:32 PM
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who a spanish guy
Von Cello 

Post No. 1875
04/26/2008 05:34 PM
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Anybody listen to much Pablo Casals? I have been checking out the 6 record box of the festivals he held in the late 1950's. Of course he playing is great, but what is amazing is the kind of energy he gets out of the orchestra when he conducts. It is an example of how one man can inspire the many around him.
Von Cello 

Post No. 1874
04/25/2008 10:36 AM
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Rabbi Lederman Stikes Again!

This may not be that funny, especially for those not well versed in Orthodox Jewish customs, but I think it makes an interesting point about how "Americanized" many modern Jews have become. (Or perhaps you "Yiddicized" many other Jews have remained.)

A new company, called Kosher Email is about to release new
software to make sure your emails are kosher. How does it
work? When you download the software it will "read" and "filter"
your outgoing email.

The software will:

* Add Yiddishized names (depending on which software you
order. Available in Sephardic, Ashkenazic and Hassidishe
* Convert dates to the Jewish calendar
* Add Bli Neder , Bli Ein Hora and IY"H.
* Remove any possible Loshon Hara, Rechilus and Motzei
Shem Raa
* Insert authentic looking broken English and grammar errors
* Certified kosher, L'Mehadrin Min Ha'Mehadrin

Here's an example:


Dear Dad,

We're landing at JFK at 4 PM on Monday. Please bring the
minivan because Grandma's wheelchair is making the trip. I love
Grandma, but, boy, does she complain.

We are really looking forward to Sarah's wedding on Saturday
night. She and Jake make such a lovely couple.

Love from the kids,



Tatti, Ad Mayah v-Esrim,

Bli Neder, we'll be landing, IY"H, at JFK on Yom Sheni
L'Shabbos Bein Hashmashos, with God's help. Please bring the
minivan because Bubbe's (she should live and be well)
wheelchair is making the trip. I love Bubbe. [but, boy, does she
complain].(taken out as loshon hara!; See Shmiras Halashon

We are really looking forward to Sarala's Chasana on Motzaei
Shabbos. Her and Yankele make such a lovely couple, they
should build a Bayis Neh-ehman B'Yisroel.

Love from the Gantza Mishpucha, Bli Ayin Hora, tu-tu-tu,

Devorah Sprintze
Von Cello 

Post No. 1873
04/25/2008 09:18 AM
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Message from God

Yes, God was telling you to stop shopping and get your ass into shul!


Post No. 1872
04/25/2008 06:03 AM
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i was in 1982 on kibbutz hasogen mizra and ein dor
yes later in nyc in one day i was in bloomingdales in the morning and bumped intyo a guy from my kita then SAME dasy i was in brooklyn in a kingsplaza mall and bumped into a girl from the same kibbuts a sabra.

messages from god?
Von Cello 

Post No. 1871
04/24/2008 02:24 PM
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Land of Mystery

Yes, Israel does lend itself to weird "spiritual" experiences. I remember that just before I left for Israel I was looking out at Manhattan from the roof top of my apartment building. From there I could see three big landmarks. One was Riverside Church, another was Grant's Tomb (former president) which has a pyramid on top of it, and JTS the Jewish Theological Seminary (home of Conservative Judaism). I looked out at these three landmarks and it struck me that they represented the three great monotheistic religions. (The pyramid represented Islam to me.) I prayed and said to God that I hoped during my trip to Israel I would finally get some kind of sign that would tell me once and for all which of these three religions was the truth.

Now I will tell you something totally honest... No sooner did that thought cross my mind then a large seagull came flying directly at me. It came right from the lighthouse on top of JTS and flew so directly at me that I was about to duck when it suddenly shot upwards above me!

At the time I was certain that this was a sign from God telling me that Judaism was the truth!

Nowadays, I am less likely to believe in any kind of "spiritual" experience, because everything we experience can be taken many ways. But I bet there is not a "born again" Christian out there who had a stronger "sign" from God than did I on that night!

I think that no one really knows "the truth" but we are all compelled to subscribe to one type of belief or another because of a whole line of experiences. It may even be in our DNA. But this was just one of several "weird" experiences that happened before, during, and after my trip to the "Holy Land".

Post No. 1870
04/24/2008 12:10 PM
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Small world

Oh, I think I did mention it, s th about my Hebrew teacher in 1988. That time I stayed for 1.5 year. But my first time on a kibbutz was in 1982, for 4 mo.
It's weird how Israel is an extremely small world somehow - at the end of those 4 months (students' exchange of technical college), on my last day in Israel, I walked in the Old City in Jerusalem and someone tapped me on the shoulder and it was a classmate - I didn't even know he'd be been there all that time as well! Of course, his kibbutz had been only 40 min. down the road from mine ...
And - some years ago when I visited, it coincided with the first time back to Israel after 20+ years all the way from Oz of the girl who played Waltzing Mathilde ...
Von Cello 

Post No. 1869
04/24/2008 10:09 AM
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kibbitzing on the Kibbutz

Whaaaaat? I didn't realize you had spent time in Israel on a Kibbutz. (Maybe you mentioned it before, but it sounds new to me.) Steve, who posts here, also spent time on one. How long where you there? I went to a kibbutz once for one day. My friend, who was a Jew for Jesus and tried to convert me when we were kids, was staying for the summer in a kibbutz. It just so happened that I ended up going to Israel that summer. He said he was going to be in a kibbutz near Eilat. I didn't even know the name of it. But when I was in Eilat for a few days, I took a bus to the nearest kibbutz on the chance that it might be the one.

When I got there, there was no one around. I walked through what was like a ghost town. There was one door open to ones building. I stuck my head in and saw someone with his face buried in his hands, throwing water on his face in the sink. I said, "Excuse me." He turned around startled, not expecting anyone to be around. And then his look changed to even more startled as he was my friend!

Post No. 1868
04/24/2008 04:24 AM
Comments (1)
8 bit characters

Hey Aaron, it seems that all 8 bit characters are stripped to 7 bits by your guestbook software: I had an n with a tilde up in the headline, shown now as a question mark, and the pronounciation description in your message also looks it's been scrambled on the way.
By the way, you'd never have thought what your ref. to Dancing Mathilde makes me think back of! After kabbalat shabbath with volunteers and talmidei ulpan in the kibbutz, accompanied by the musical instruments at hand, which at one time happened to be accordeon, recorder and cello, we sometimes played songs from our respective countries ...
Von Cello 

Post No. 1867
04/23/2008 10:53 PM
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Waltzing Ma-tilde

The tilde (~) (pronounced /'tɪldɘ/) is a grapheme with several uses. The name of the character comes from Spanish, from the Latin titulus meaning a title or superscription. It was originally written over a letter as a mark of abbreviation, but has since acquired a number of other uses as a diacritic mark or a character in its own right. In the latter capacity (especially in lexicography), a tilde is sometimes confused with a swung dash (usually lengthened to ~) which is used in dictionaries to indicate the omission of a word[1].

Now if I can only figure out how to get my Imac to print one!

Post No. 1866
04/23/2008 10:25 PM
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Aargh! In the old days, with the wordprocessors on the first generation PCs (1980s), you just pressed the Alt key and the two characters you wanted to combine (say, n and ~) and that was it. Never understood why it isn't as simple as that anymore.
Out of laziness to switch another keyboard setting or open the "Symbols" thingie or remember the ASCII code (like Alt 237 or whatever) I sometimes just copy-paste the required character from another text at hand.
Is the ~ called tilde in English?
Von Cello 

Post No. 1865
04/23/2008 04:20 PM
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Hey Steve, what do you call that squiggily line over the letter n in Spanish?

One of my Ten International Cello Encores is called Ritmo Carrabano,but I don't know what that sign over the n is called, or how to write it with Word.

Von Cello 

Post No. 1864
04/23/2008 10:37 AM
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What do you get when you apply Japanese technical know-how to an ancient Jewish ritual?
Von Cello 

Post No. 1863
04/23/2008 10:28 AM
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The music between the notes

Silence is also important in live music. You can usually tell someone is an amateur musician if they rush through the rests. Sometimes there may be a rest written into the music as long as a whole measure. Often a less schooled player will get nervous that too much silence is going by and come in a beat or a half a beat early. They do not realize that silence is golden.

Of course in rock music there is almost never silence. Same in jazz. Actually, I think the same is true in celtic music and most other forms of folk music... except there is the thing called a "tacit". That is when everything stops except the melody line. And there is a great moment of silence near the end of the Dead's Anthem of the Sun. On Celtar there is a cool tacit in the song "Dangerous". The silence lasts about a quarter of a beat.

Hey, it's not much, but it's better than nothing!

Post No. 1862
04/23/2008 08:39 AM
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why not a cd with 2 songs and a really long time between the two...

Post No. 1861
04/22/2008 11:59 PM
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what to do after 4:20

4:20? Ha, I have a CD with a space after the last song of about 15 minutes (should check) and I never knew, until once I left it running. I was alone in the house and suddenly people I didn't know started screaming and making a fuss about something ... on the CD () ...
Von Cello 

Post No. 1860
04/22/2008 07:31 PM
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Talking about Space!

What a nice thing to talk about... space. Not outer space, or inner space for that matter. Just space. The thing that exists silently between other things.

On Celtar we have one song that has 12 seconds of space before it! It just feels right to me.

A friend had a band named 4:20. I think that was it. They came up with the name because, apparently that is the time when many people get home and start smoking pot. Pretty weird, I know. But anyway, that was the name of the band and on their CD they left 4 minutes and 20 seconds before the last song!

It must have been pretty amazing for some of the stoners who completely forgot that the CD had ended, only to suddenly hear the music appear as if out of nowhere minutes later! But I wonder how many realized that it was exactly 4:20.

Now that's what I call space!

Post No. 1859
04/22/2008 10:26 AM
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Oh I do. I recently listened to a CD and remember thinking: whaw, they have paid attention to the spacing so well - it was completely in accordance with the music.
Von Cello 

Post No. 1858
04/22/2008 08:57 AM
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Celtar Space

I now have the final mix for all the cuts in Celtar I am now figuring out the exact amount of space between the songs. I wonder how many people, when they listen to a CD or an old album, realize that even the amount of space between songs has to be decided upon by someone. Space can make or break an album.

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