Archive for April, 2012

Now here’s something that neither of us could have predicted. It’s an illustration of how the internet has truly made the world a global village.

Michael Hoppe and I were neighbors and met in Los Angeles some years back. We are both ex-pats from England via Canada & both in the Music business; his instrumental CD Solace was nominated for a Grammy.

After he moved to Portland, Oregon, he told me he had collaborated with lyricists in the past, but it had rarely if ever worked out, “Would I like to have a go?”. He emailed me an mp3 of a melodic, beautiful tune he’d written.

Like everyone else, I was riveted to the Egyptian uprising that was unfolding daily on the news. Tahrir Square was filled with non-violent demonstrators. Aerial shots of Cairo police confronting protesters on the bridge at night was particularly moving. It was like the moon was watching.

Around 2AM, headphones on…I cranked up the volume, Hoppe’s music surrounded me and I wrote…I Am The Moon:



As they did in the cold rain of April 1865, opposing armies in blue and gray stand shoulder to shoulder on the rolling farmland of Sayler’s Creek, Virginia. With a shout, guns are raised; a deafening crack; and smoke from the black powder hangs over the battlefield. Lisa Arden and I captured the action while filming our documentary:

The Battle of Little Sayler’s Creek – to be included in a Memorial Day Marathon May 28th 2012 2:30PM (ET)
DISH Network (Channel 197) and DIRECTV (Channel 267).

Industrial AgeWhen ATM’s first appeared on our streets it was a wonderful convenience: now you could get cash at any time of the day or night as long as the machines were in working order. The banks got to replace tellers with tireless computers who didn’t care about belonging to a union, and were there for the bank and their customers 24/7.

The brilliance of these cash dispensers was that when a customer made a deposit, or withdrew funds, or made a transfer the customer was doing the data entry for the bank! To add insult to injury, later banks would charge fees to the customer for making the ATM transactions! Banks didn’t have to pay a human teller and customers were working for the bank and paying them for the privilege.



Social Media Marketing

It’s an interesting term that conjures up a means to market a product; a commercial floor wax, or …an idea.

In the old days a Corporation would have most of the control over the message and the advertising campaign in a one-way broadcast that served to find, and define their market. This top down hierarchy worked well for a long time because they were able to count on a certain amount of apathy or passivity from the consumer who was then part of a robust middle class.

In the past, social movements did arise but took years to reach critical mass. Think of Ghandi leading his non-violent revolution against the British in India.

Martin Luther King and the Civil Rights movement; Women’s Suffrage and so on.

Now we have Twitter and Facebook and a host of other social media sites that have enabled everyone with a smart phone or a computer to gather and talk back.

Dictatorships have enjoyed the privileges of power for years without much resistance. The People acquiesce for fear of being tortured or killed…until now.