Monday, January 21, 2008

Elephant Seals, Scotland and Eric Clapton

I'm back. After a fast and furious start to my blogging career, I hit the wall and needed a few days off.

I've just spent the weekend in San Luis Obispo, CA playing at a dance festival with the very fine contra dance band, Wild Asparagus. The music has been a blast and it's always great to get to play with this band.

Yesterday, I drove about 30 miles up the coast to see the elephant seals calving on the beach. This is truly one of the craziest natural things I have ever witnessed. It's like something out of Doctor Seuss. I mean, these beasts are freaking huge and weird looking and there's hundreds and hundreds of them. Check it out.

They can dive 5000 feet under water and the mature bulls weigh two tons!!!! It's crazy. I saw some good fights for dominance and thought I was going to see one of the cows give birth, but we had to get back to the gig before it happened.

This trip is the start of my crazy travel schedule the next month or so. Here's a list of the places I go, in order, between now and February 24:

San Luis Obsipo, CA
Glasgow, Scotland
Brattleboro, VT (for two days)
St. Thomas, USVI
St. Croix, USVI
Big Sky, Montana
Vancouver Island, BC
Tacoma, WA

Not bad. I'm not even sure I'll get jet lagged because it's so insane. I'm currently sitting in the San Jose airport, waiting for my flight to Scotland to board. My flight leaves here at 7 AM and I don't arrive in Glasgow until 10 am, Scottish time on Tuesday morning.

I'm always amazed at how crazy people get in airports. I think that everyone should be required to fly with a double-bass at least once so that they mellow out when they realize how much easier it is without a seven foot long coffin containing a valuable musical instrument in tow.

I am so excited about heading back to Celtic Connections. I've been there twice with Crooked Still and am excited to be able to return to play with Lissa. She's just finishing up a new CD as well, which will be released in April. It really came out fantastic and I am very proud of it.

On another note, I just watched a DVD about The Band and my conclusions are that Levon Helm is the man, Robbie Robertson is an ass, and I can't freaking stand Eric Clapton (he is interviewed several times on the video). What's the deal with that guy? How is it that he's considered an expert on anything?


Anonymous said...

Corey, I was so confused about the picture with the penquins in it! I assume you didn't take that in CA!?

Good luck and safe travels! I think I'll pass on the double bass requirement and just take your word for it.


Corey DiMario said...

It's true, I didn't take the picture with the penguins in it. My pictures didn't really capture the coolness of the bull elephant seal, so I snagged this one from the internet. The pictures I took would lead you to believe they are more like ten foor long slugs sleeping on the beach!. They were actually really active yesterday.

mandobaron said...

whoo, thats quite the schedule.

i too share your views on the band. what was it you saw? the last waltz? also apparently levon came up with a lot of the material for a bunch of the songs they sang and figured that he would get his share when the band split, but robertson essentially got everything after they split and levon is eternally pissed and doesn't want to talk about him. great band while it lasted though.

raina rose said...

Levon Helm is most definitely the MAN.

Anonymous said...

Wish I was in Glasgow....hugs to all I know and see you soon.

Anonymous said...

Forgot to say it was Joyce!!!

Mom said...

it's really great to get the details! You know me, Mom ALWAYS wants the details! I can't wait to hear the new CD and the new band in person. Have gathered 3 new nurse groopies for the next NE show. Have a great honeymoon trip (like, of course you will!)
Love ya tons, Mom

Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

hey corey, tried to take on board what you said about my punctuation! it s full stop city here. Really enjoying the blog. Next the web pages and then the world. hope yer enjoy yer celtic connections visit. have a great time on yer honeymoon chat soon james

Sam said...

right on re: the band. wow, levon helm is so amazing. i got to introduce myself and shake his hand and tell him how amazing he was at the apple store on tuesday, and then hear him play lots of drums and sing one song. so beautiful! wow.

Lab Cat said...

Have you read Clapton's bio? It is full of crap too. He was basically drugged all the way through the punk era, when it was just happening up the road. I know more of what happened then than he does and I was about 10 or something.

He really doesn't have a clue.

Anonymous said...

Hope you don't mind but I e-mailed your feelings about Levon to the webmaster of the official Band website, Jan Hoiberg.
Jan then posted a note about your blog in the "What's New" section of The Band website on
January 23rd, (6th bullet point down).

Pete (aka Forbes)

jeff f said...

Levon Helm was and still is 'the man'.

Lets not forget,
Rick Danko
Garth Hudson
Richard Manuel
were all part of that great sound of the band.
Robbie Robertson seemed to have forgot that.

For my money the best British guitarist of that era are Jeff Beck, Page and Richard Thompson is pretty damn good himself.

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