cptntiller: (tbone)


My band, the DIRTY WATER BRASS BAND! Will be playing at Honk! This saturday. We're on at 3PM at the Dilboy VFW, and at 8pm at Davis Square Plaza, which is the little thing next to Starbucks and across the street from Diesel Cafe.

If you're not available for that/if that isn't enough for you, there is a pre-honk event with two other awesome honk bands at 8pm on Thursday Night at the Oberon: http://www.cluboberon.com/events/marching-band-mayhem

HONK! is an AWESOME day of non-stop music goodness. There are a TON of great bands there, from all over the place. Ones I experienced last year and would recommend
Rude Mechanical Orchestra, What Cheer! Brigade, Emperor Norton's Stationary Marching Band*, EE - Environmental Encroachment* [I have not yet seen, but plan on checking out young fellaz and hungry march]

There are TONS of AWESOME AWESOME bands at HONK though. So come down and check them, and us, out. Hope to see you there!

Here is my line-up for what I'm going to watch Saturday:

*-Also at thursdays gig!
cptntiller: (tbone)

The Beatles: http://youtu.be/XNnaxGFO18o

That F is a little sharp! They both need work, but the swung one needs more! I need to attack some beginning notes better!

The entire point of this project is to improve, and if nothing else, the self-observations I'm getting are helping in scores.

The goal of this project is to play every song in the real book, and to improve my tone and overall skills as a trombone player in the process. Eventually I'd love to get some kind of comping or background, or... some way to make this more than just a reading of a lead sheet. For now though, this works! Thanks for coming along for the ride!
cptntiller: (tbone)

Walter Wanderly Trio version: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sbHkgWD3gk4
Johnny Mathis version: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UBSaMazf9a8

This one is not quite where I want it yet, but I'll try again

The goal of this project is to play every song in the real book, and to improve my tone and overall skills as a trombone player in the process. Eventually I'd love to get some kind of comping or background, or... some way to make this more than just a reading of a lead sheet. For now though, this works! Thanks for coming along for the ride!
cptntiller: (tbone)

Because clearly, as I can barely keep up with posting my photo project, what I needed was a new, video based one.

John Coltrane version: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ecrE80rnjhw
Frank Sinatra version: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qkWplI8fOyM

The goal of this project is to play every song in the real book, and to improve my tone and overall skills as a trombone player in the process. Eventually I'd love to get some kind of comping or background, or... some way to make this more than just a reading of a lead sheet. For now though, this works!


May. 31st, 2011 01:49 pm
cptntiller: (tbone)
  • Gig Day

Today the band I'm in, the Dirty Water Brass Band played a gig at a church in Cambridge for the SQUAWK! coffeehouse. We were opening for former punk band The Fugs frontman Ed Sanders. It was a pretty cool night.


Apr. 13th, 2011 11:11 pm
cptntiller: (Schnauzer)

Pretty standard day. Woke up, work, made dinner, band rehearsal, sleep. Managed to slam my head into the ceiling during band rehearsal, that was stupid. Oh well. How you doing?

Veggieburgers for dinner

Beers and Band Rehearsal

Dirty Water Brass Band
cptntiller: (Schnauzer)

A Day In The Life from Todd Page on Vimeo.

warning: boxers and nsfw lyrics.

I tried to record most of my day. I ran out of battery before the end of the day, and lord, it was easy to forget to record things. Still, an attempt is above. the morning has more coverage than the rest of the day. All the music is actually what I was listening to. And I made it with my cell phone. so. you know. low quality, whee.

MY DAY BEGAN LIKE MOST! In the morning, that is. I wake between 7 and 7:20 on the average day. However, this day had a special wake-up. See, after my normal first alarm went off, I heard a noise from the hallway and BAM! Attacked by the pooch. He may or may not have been operating on his hand the night before, and I may or may not have tickled him. I waited 'til he wasn't holding a knife, so it's totally fine, honest. Anyway, his revenge was to jump on me as I woke up. I love my apartment. We had a short discourse about his sleeping choices [the couch] and the fact that in the middle of the night he switched couches, rather than moving to his bed.

Now awakened, I traversed the stairs into my kitchen, where I promptly began the music. Lately I've been a bit obsessed with Cee-Lo's "Fuck You" a peppy song with rather angsty lyrics. With this song playing, I grooved around my kitchen, making my lunch for the day. A standard homemade lunch consists of: Carrots, yogurt, a bag of goldfish, and a peanut butter sandwich. Unless there are leftovers. Then there are leftovers. Today was a situation of the former. I talked with Jeff as I did so, and then, lunch made, and Mike done with our shower, jumped in said shower, before getting dressed and jumping out the door to walk to work!

My walk to work, as expressed before, is extremely pleasant. An extremely short .7 mile walk to the local T station, surrounded by puppies and people's. It's fall here in New England land, and the trees over the walk are yellow and red, and even on a gray morose morning, it is beautiful.

When I got to the T station, I sat on a bench to await the next train to the Alewife, and pulled out my new iPod from my friend Katie. See, it syncs automatically, and had picked up from my computer the episodes of The Fabulous Beekman Boys that I had downloaded. I upon noticing this, developed a new morning commute habit that I'm not really proud of. I've been watching the show on the T. And while I wait for the T. I mean, it's only 10 minutes or so, but it's a super amusing 10 minutes. The show is very amusing, but also really frustrating, as the main characters are kind've obnoxious and ignorant. Still, I enjoy it and their friends in the village are really hot, so I watch it. I think it's mostly because I enjoy being angry at them for their lack of farm knowledge. Or because a little part of me wants to live on a farm. Who knows, eh?

A T train came by, I excitedly got up, and it just KEPT going. Damn the express trains. I sat down, a bit sad, but soon got involved in the silly farm-gays mishaps, and forgot about it until the next train came. Happily seated on my train, I managed to polish off an episode before hopping off, switching back to music and walking to my office. I had no more than gotten to my desk when I was overcome with great joy.

You see, dear readers, yesterday. Yesterday was tuesday. You have heard tell of the glorious day upon which free bagels are delivered to our illustrious work community? THAT DAY IS TUESDAY.

Now there was a scary moment, when I arrived in the cafeteria. NARY A CINNAMON CRUNCH BAGEL WAS TO BE FOUND.

What was one to do? I gathered all my resolve and strength, and chose instead a french toast bagel. I am happy to report it was quite delicious, and I nommed it at my desk while I got some work done before the daily scrum.

A scrum is an agile thingy. Agile is this whole efficiency thing. A way to try and make sure we get stuff done. It's effective. Basically for the scrum everyone on the team gathers every morning for 15 minutes and says "this is what I did yesterday" and then "this is what I'll do today" and then if they have blockers. It's nifty, really.

This meeting done, I sat down at my coworker Savanna's desk, and had an important conversation about how thoroughly amazing both Muppet Treasure Island and Muppet Christmas Carol are. We agreed that they were, in fact, our favorite renditions of both movie. My coworker's are awesome.

I went back to my desk and began to accomplish work! Currently I am working on a Safari themed slot machine. More specifically the bonus round, which involves riding in a jeep, with a camera, taking pictures of animals. We're using parallax animation, and I'm having fun coding it all.

I took a brief webcomic break in the morning, rifling through my google reader updates to find the new posts. In the new Questionable Content update I discovered... DUN DUN DUN... the first QC book was released! OBVIOUSLY this was something I needed. I'm a huge webcomic nerd, and I've read every one and this is a fun way to both accumulate a hardcover version and support the creator. While there I snapped a t-shirt I've been wanting for a while, but only one. Which is really kind've impressive given the amount of merch from webcomics I love on topatoco.

SOON LUNCHTIME CAME! A bunch of my coworkers and myself, walk across the street together, and then eat in the cafe in this building together. Having remembered to bring my lunch today, I picked up some mozzarella sticks because they were staring at me, and they were just like "oh todd, please won't you eat me!?" I couldn't resist. They were so cute and delicious. I checked out, and everyone else was still in line, and by the time they got out, they were GONE. Seriously.

Anywho, we trekked across the street. Chi-Yun and I talked about Matzuka's laugh. And how he was a pretty awesome character. I don't really remember yesterdays lunch conversation, but experience tells me that star wars came up at some point. I know I laughed alot and we had to refer to imdb at some point, but that's pretty much a daily thing here, really. One lunch time conversation involved trying to discover a way to, without defying physics, make a 30 foot deep ball pit that one could actually jump into. We're pretty classy.

Often after lunch, we will play video games for a bit. This can be any of a number of games, be it Left 4 Dead, Worms, or in the case of yesterday, Super Mario World. I watched as I have finished that game at home, and honestly, nowadays playing it stresses me out a little. It's fun though, I recommend it.

That being finished, the rest of the work day commenced. Until quitting time!

At quitting time, I popped on my iPod, and walked to the T. And then I realized I'd left my wallet at work, so I walked back. Yay. On my second return to the T, I realized I'd left my phone charger there, too, and decided I didn't really care.

On the T ride home, I knitted. This is a much better activity, although it gets me weird looks from pretty much everyone on the T. I think men knitting confuses people. Which is odd as they invented it, but whatever. I haven't particularly cared what anyone thought of me in a while.

Upon getting home, I discovered my roommate was there. He usually has meditation on tuesdays, so this was a surprise. I had rehearsal in an hour and a half, so I asked him if he wanted to play mariokart for an hour. He did, and so WE did. We played online with other people, which was new and fun.

Upon finishing I prepared the marinade for the dinner I was making that night, and put the pork in it. Then, Mike, who was driving to his girlfriend's to say hi, was leaving at the same time as me, and offered so nicely to give me a ride to my rehearsal!

Dynamite was playing in the car. I played along on my bone.

Rehearsal came! I was apparently cranky yesterday, alot of stuff got under my nerves. Our guitar player quit recently, and our tenor sax is on vacation so rehearsal was a bit sparse, and I think I was just sleepy. There were some other factors in the crankiness, but really, that's for me to work on.

By the end I was feeling a bit frustrated, and I turned on an album for the walk home. That album is one of the few entirely perfect albums in this world. From beginning to end, I cannot find a flaw with it. John Coltrane's Blue Train, ladies and gents. This album is essentially flawless.

I got home and began cooking my dinner, blasting Blue Train in the kitchen. Talked to Mike for a bit, then he played starcraft, and I just let coltrane wash over me while I made sweet and sour pork. It was like therapy. I felt so much better. I ate my dinner, and read some of my BONE anthology, and all of a sudden it was 11:30. Crazy!

But there was glee to be watched! And watch glee I did. I greatly enjoyed it, although I haven't seen Rocky Horror yet, and thus have no personal attachment to it, so I've no cause to get worked up like most people I know.

Jeff still hadn't come home, which was weird, but he works at a startup, so really not entirely unexpected. I decided to head up to bed, where I read for about 45 minutes and fell asleep.

Wow. How boring was this telling, huh? Apparently I'm just not in it. You're better off just watching the video.

Sorry. I'll be back on my game soon!

[Full list of questions]
cptntiller: (tbone)
Day 07 – Your hobbies, in great detail

Full size images of the above here:
Trombone: here
Guitar [Missing]: here
Cameras: here
Climbing: here
Knitting: here

Oh snap. Kids. I do too much.

So. I divided into some categories!

I play a plethora of instruments. I've been playing guitar for 8 years now, and while I don't play out, I play alot in my apartment space. Mostly acoustic, though I recently re-stringed my electric, so maybe I'll use that more often now. It's a nice calming activity, very zen and what-not. I can also play violin and trumpet, some drums, and a little piano. Additionally, I'm learning the accordion, and seeking out a banjo. I'm excited about the banjo.

My best/favorite instrument is assuredly the trombone. I've been playing since 5th grade, so, almost 16 years now.

Wow. Crazy.

I started playing in concert band at my middle school, where I actually had my mom - though she wasn't my main music teacher. I took to the instrument like a virus to an immune system. Wait, what was that metaphor. Whatever, moving on. I practiced a lot in middle school, oddly without any lecturing from my folks. I was put in a private school in 6th grade. I was kind've miserably depressed while I was there, and the resulting apathy caused me to not only do horribly in school, but stop caring about playing. I stopped for a single semester and came back to it as soon as possible. I had missed it a lot. I was in honors band in middle school, and then in high school, as I mentioned before, I was introduced to jazz. All of a sudden trombone made even more sense to me. I began taking lessons [actually, for the second time] with a local trombonist, Jim Fryer. He's amazing. Anyone who downloaded the october mix got to hear him, actually. My new focus on it, combined with some competition from a classmate and a strong desire to place into regionals brought even more focus to it. I played alot in high school. Got into regionals all three years I tried out, narrowly missed all-states the two I tried out for it. My parents sent me to an amazing band camp [I know it's hard, but do not make the joke. There is no music person who has been to band camp who has not heard that joke and does not hate you for referencing it. Seriously. Ask any of them.] It was 3 weeks of non-stop playing. I considered it as a major for college, in fact. SPEAKING OF COLLEGE! I graduated from high school and played in college. At the beginning of my freshman year, I was in Orchestra, Jazz band, Concert Band, and the Pep Band.

I didn't really want to do pep band, and the first rehearsal kind've cemented in my mind that it was not something I wanted, and also it was not something I would be able to do while being a theatre kid. [priorities.] Orchestra I remained in for that semester. There are a couple of reasons it sucked. One: It always sucks to be a brass player in Orchestra. There are some truly amazing parts, but 95% of any given gig is just counting and waiting for them to happen. Two: The orchestra was not very popular, and so it was in part populated by folks from the community, and the other trombone player was fucking. Bat-shit. Crazy. He scared me alot. The tamest example is him yelling at me for drinking water because fishes fuck in it. The last part of that is a quote. I stayed in concert band and jazz band, then my junior year I realized "wait. I don't actually enjoy concert band."

See, in high school you needed to be in concert band to be in jazz band. So I had that mindset. When I realized I didn't need to be in concert band to play the kind of music I really loved, that game ended immediately. I was in jazz band the rest of my college life, with the exception of my final semester. My roommate and good friend Ian and I quit together. The new conductor had sapped all the fun out of jazz. Which is impressive.

I didn't play for almost two years, when I did a craigslist search for a band looking for a trombone player. I happened upon the band I am now in! The Dirty Water Brass Band. I'm hella glad to have found them. They're super fun, and we have an awesome time. We rocked the shit out of our sets at HONK, in my humble opinion, and we're hoping to start picking up more gigs. I'm extremely excited for this. It's my kind of music, with great folks. And I've been in it since NEAR the beginning, and it's fun to notice how very far we've come.

I got a digital camera my senior year of highschool. It was an old 3.2 megapixel HP. There are images from it on this LJ. I snapped everything for a while, then put it down. Fall my sophomore year of college, I decided I was going to become good at photography. I picked the camera up, and decided to force myself to take ten pictures every day, with the intention of them being more than simply snapshots. I slowly gained knowledge, from people and the internets, but mostly from simply forcing myself to continuously shoot. And I genuinely loved it.

I picked up a film camera that weekend, and loved the control it gave me, but didn't have darkroom access, so after getting film developed a few times, being a poor college student, put it down. At the end of that year, I upgraded my camera for my first digital camera with the ability to manually focus, set aperture, shutter, etcetera. It was a fixed lens SLR, a Panasonix FZ-30. I shot as much as possible, and went further and further down the photo rabbit hole.

Second semester junior year I took an extra course in black and white film photography. My world was blown. Developing my own photos brought everything to an entirely new and far more meaningful level. I didn't have a sensational portfolio at the end of the course, in part thanks to a camera without a working light meter, and a teacher who didn't even teach us how to use filters in the darkroom.
First film portfolio

That summer I began my infamous 365 project. Most of you were here for that, right? If not, um. I did an entire year of shooting a self-portrait every. single. day. You can see them all here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/thp365/sets/72157606251703136/

That year, I claim to be the sponsor of most of my photography skills. I learned so much that year through continuous practice and forced creativity that I could not have learned over a year of casually shooting. I recommend it to anyone trying to get further into the world of photography. At this time there was a huge photo community here on LJ, that posted all the time. Angry Alan, Transairn, a bunch of other folks who used to post ALL the time. Many of them still do. bobo dreams, Bitterlawngnome, Rural Rob. The point being that the inspiration and advice and encouragement from the people on this site helped me a thousandfold.

My fall semester senior year, I took another film course at PC, the second level one, and that produced work I am *EXTREMELY* proud of. I learned more, and got hooked on film more.
Second film portfolio

Starting junior year, I was given jobs shooting the archive footage of Providence College theatre productions. I did such photos for the theatre company I worked for after college as well, and last winter I was invited by Mark_shutterbug to help shoot [title of show] at the speakeasy. One of my photos from which ended up in the Boston Globe.

I've shot a few weddings since. An engagement shoot, a headshot shoot, and mostly just a number of shoots for me. Most of the work is here. I love film and shoot it whenever I can. I'm beginning to aquire a collection of classic cameras, which I love. I've been shooting with a Yashica Mat-124 alot lately, I need to work on getting those scanned and online for people to see. Too much to do!

But photography is my main creative and life outlet. I love it, I can't imagine who I would be without it.

The third is electronics/Gamery!
Yes, yes. I am one of those video game playing Hooligans. No, I am not one of those WoW playing types. I don't do drugs, thanks.

I'm not a hardcore gamer, or even an overly skilled one. But I love playing, especially now that the interwebs makes it easier to play with friends / now that I live with roommates who also game.

My favorite games? Okay. Well.

Half-Life 2 is amazing. Just. Totally frigging awesome. I'm probably going to replay that soon. Any classic NES game is awesome, especially Super Mario Bros 3. I love Super Mario Galaxy a lot. Ask my college roommates about how much I slept after we got that game. Answer: not very much. Left 4 Dead and Left 4 Dead 2 are amazing games. My coworkers also play them, so we'll often take a breather to just all get in together and play. Nothing quite as fun as killing zombies. I'd say I play those two the most. [thethp on steam] OH. Did I mention: Portal. Portal is frigging awesome. Portal 2 is just around the corner, that's exciting.

I also love board games, on the game front. The classic, simple games like scrabble, [I can play scrabble for hours.] and the more complicated geek games like settlers of catan. Any board game really. Or card games. Card games are awesome.

I included electronics because I also like to toy with computers and circuits. I am a code monkey at heart, and have been known to happily code on my own projects at home. I recently made an amp, too, also.

The fourth is Climbing/Physical Activity!
I rock climb, kids. It's my favorite way to expell energy. I'm at a solid 5.11 now, been climbing near weekly for over a year now. The pooch and I climb together, it's a good time. It's like physical exercise, but with mental stimulation. The best combination ever.

I used to be really into Parkour. I'm working on getting back into it. I kind've fell out of the community when I moved to Boston, but once my shoulder heals up I'm going to be right back in there, vaulting with the best. It's a great discipline, very freeing and exciting, also an amazing outlet.

I bike! A lot. Although, recently not as much because my bike is broked due to an accident. Geting it fixed and back on wheels soon though. I actually bike[d] to work every single day. It's a great way to start and end the day, really. We'll see how long it lasts now that it's all brisk out.

Oh, and I play on a wicked awesome dodgeball team. The flying Wombats. Respect the wombat.

And skiing. I love skiing.

The fifth is knitting!
I hesitated to include this one. I just started about 2 months ago. But I'm really really enjoying it, and plan to continue to, so here it is. So far I've only made a scarf and a hat and sweater sampler, but I'm about to start my first sweater, so yay.

madknits got me into it, actually. It was a pleasant happenstance, and I'm really glad for it. Also glad for the fun time hanging out with him and his knitting krew on monday nights. It's quite pleasant. Knitting is very zen for me, it's a nice detox.

I didn't include theatre in the image above, because I don't really ACTIVELY help make theatre anymore. I probably should get back involved, but I lack the time right now, really. ALTHOUGH. I am planning to start doing long-form improv again, which I've heavily missed.

Holy shit, dudes. If you actually made it this far in reading this blathering page of hobby describing, you're impressive. I'm exhausted. Bye.
cptntiller: (tbone)
Some more videos of the brass band I'm in.

Blues March


We played a gig last thursday at the lily pad, and got these videos. Our next gig is Thursday, July 8th at 8:00 PM in the Cantab [downstairs. Club Bohemia]. Wheee!
cptntiller: (tbone)
You know that scene in the film classic Sister Act II, where Whoopi Goldberg turns to the young miss Lauryn hill and says "If you wake up in the morning, and you can't think of anything but singing first, then you supposed but singing first, then you supposed to be a singer, girl"

Obviously you do, we've all seen this legendary movie at least 10 times, correct? No? Just me? Well we all have the soundtrack at least. No? Still just me?

Well, whether or not you're as inherently cool as I am isn't really the point. Lately I've kind've felt like that, but with the trombone. I just feel like practicing all the damn time.

I'm not sure how inherently I trust this emotion, as I often get into this state when I get into something I love, but I also know that I have been playing trombone for 16 years, and that's indicative of an interest I'm likely to continue loving. Like photography - which, p.s. I haven't abandoned, I have a huge backlog of digital, and I am also shooting a roll of film a week. The basic synthesis is I like a whole ton of different shit, and fitting it all in and figuring out which ones to focus on when is often tricky.

I guess there isn't much point to this entry beyond: damn does it feel good to be playing again. It had only been 2 years since I had last been sincerely playing actively, and I'd been so busy, I had only sometimes noticed how much I was missing it. And now that I'm really playing again, I want to do it all the time. I'm sitting at work, hammering out code, jamming to the Youngblood Brass Band and while I'm working I'm trying to identify the intervals in my head.

My soloing work has some ways to go, but it is way above where it used to be, and I'm really getting into it and focusing on it. At least of my practicing now is aural training and recognizing stuff. My bandmates are all lessons in themselves. They got chops and experience and I'm learning from listening and watching them as much as I am from learning and listening the greats.

Basically, what I'm trying to say is god it feels amazing to be playing again. Playing with a band, playing the music that fills me the most, and playing in front of people again. It's an amazing release that had been missing.

Also, I think I'm trying to say that Sister Act II is a fucking awesome movie. Whatever - don't be hating, it's great.

Relatedly, the band I'm in: The Dirty Water Brass Band will be playing tomorrow night at the Cantab Lounge in Central Square [downstairs, club bohemia] at 11 P.M. I think there's probably a cover. Sorry about that. But on the plus side, I'm less scared of audiences now - though still totally scared of them, so I'll do more fading into the music and dancing, and less being self-concious. [Directly related to the music blackout I refer to occasionally happening at concerts]


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