Jerry!

I’m a long time fan of Jerry Bergonzi. His music, teachings/books and more recently educational videos have accompanied me for more than 20 years. Some friends of mine had lessons with him in the past and it was always interesting to hear from them about the lessons. So far though, I never had the chance to meet him, or see him live.

The happier I was to learn that Jerry and Tim Hagans will perform on this years Elojazz Festival. The line-up seems to be similar to the above. Looking forward to see/hear him there.

‘Get out of Nuzzel for a few minutes during your lunch break and try some indie blogs’

Gabe of Macdrifter in ‘If You Like Indie Blogs then Share Them’:

Is this it then? Is this the last gasp of independent blogging as everyone moves to micro transactions of half considered thoughts? Will Tweets eat WordPress? … By my estimation, the best way to show that I support indie blogging is to recommend some of the sites I read. Page views are the real currency of the internet.

A great post by Gabe and a reminder to everyone to read and share more blogs, not sites. I enjoy blogging and read blogs (which I why you read this here) and agree with Gabe: the best way to support, is to share them.

My list and write-up will be up in a couple of days.

‘I better to try to work on it’

Sonny Rollins talks about working with Monk and the Bridge period:

I didn’t have the feeling within myself, that I was really able to put out what they expected from me. So, that’s what I did. I will lay off the scene and go back into the woodshed, and get these things together and that’s basically what that thing on the bridge actually was all about.

This is a very nice animation of an excellent interview with Sonny Rollins.

‘No more copy-and-paste headaches’

WordPress introduced an Add-on to use Google Docs as a tool for writing and publishing:

When you’re ready to save a Google Docs draft as a blog post, go to the Add-ons menu and open WordPress.com for Google Docs. A sidebar will appear where you can add WordPress.com or Jetpack-connected sites […] Click the Save Draft button — when it’s saved, a preview link will appear so you can see how it looks on your site.

This is a welcome surprise, and one that actually might solve a few problems for me.

Over the past few years I had mainly used plain-text workflows, but in the recent past found it more comfortable and faster to use the WordPress editor, or the Press-This bookmarklet and only for the occasional longer article switched to a text-editor. Using Google Docs for those is a natural fit for me. I use it anyway already, has the features that I need (a document outline view comes to mind), it is available everywhere and works offline as well.

Plain text editors have served me well over the years, but in hindsight caused me more friction than I feel necessary and I feel it’s days are numbered. This is just another step, but that is going to be another post.

How to practice effectively…

A great video on “How to practice effectively…” in TED-Ed channel.

In the video at 2:15:

Mastery isn’t simply about the amount of practice, it’s also the quality and effectiveness of that practice. Effective practice is consistent, intensely focussed, and targets content and weaknesses, that lie at the edge of one’s current abilities.

Very good explanation on how to practice effectively.

Tuesday Jazz – Chet Baker: The Last Great Concert

Chet Baker is one of my all-time favourites and recently I have been on a little binge-listen of the “The Last Great Concert”  recordings. The recordings with Big Band and Strings, recorded in 1988 only weeks before his death, feature him in great form.

From All About Jazz:

The concert itself was a hugely ambitious project, given Baker’s reputation for unreliability. To back Baker: a big band and a full orchestra on stage at the same time, in addition to a jazz quartet. Baker didn’t show up for rehearsals, and he didn’t arrive at the concert hall until the afternoon of the show. In spite of that, he—and by turns the orchestra and big band and quintet—sounds marvelous. Baker fits his solos into the arrangements seamlessly.

In times, in which, at least it feels like, Jazz is getting more complicated, intellectual, but in my opinion not always more beautiful, it is great to listen to listen to these recordings which are plain, great music.

I have never been able to find them on Spotify (and still am not), but I found both recording available to play on Google Play Music. You can listen to  Vol.1 My Favourite Songs here, and Vol.2 – Straight from the Heart here.

New Simplenote for macOS

Even though I have become rather comfortable using mainly the WordPress editor, or the Press This! bookmarklet as in this case, I was looking for an easy way to jot down some drafts and eventually started to use Simplenote again.

I used Simplenote already back in the days on a, in hindsight, tiny iPhone 3g and it had never let me down, and was the center of my note-taking and writing. I found it peculiar though, that for example Markdown-preview, wasn’t available in the Mac app but obviously everywhere else. This is now fixed.

From: Try the New macOS Beta:

Today you can try out a new Simplenote beta for macOS that was built using Electron, the web technology we used for the Windows and Linux apps…If you’ve used our native macOS application in the past and have been missing some of the unsupported features like Markdown…

The app feels nice, syncs fast, and best of all, is cross-platform (Android, iOS, web, Windows, Linux) and from what I can tell identical in features on all platforms. I might be sticking for a while again.