Tuesday night I took my nephew to Hibachi Rock, one of those Japanese grill places.
I dined on rock shrimp, while he had steak and scallops. We went to a rather nicer place than we might otherwise, because he just returned from a vacation to Costa Rica with his "other" grandparents.
I had asked him to keep an eye out for some local percussion instrument during his trip. He brought me back a small sack full of coffee beans, indicating that he understands both his uncle and his uncle's non-musicality quite well. He even gets extra point for ironically giving me coffee when I don't drink coffee.
We adjourned to his parents' home, where Arnold the dog proved quite affable. My sister in law had just acquired a new bit of odd software called Karaoke Revolution.
One sings into a mic, karaoke style, while an animated character stands on stage on the screen. The game is cool--it rates how well one stays on pitch, and one scores points.
My sister in law has one of those really good voices, a stark second alto. She sang along to "Killing me Softly with His Song" (a mix closer to the Fugees' version). She was on pitch nearly the entire time, going into extra points and bonus rounds and cheering crowds. After she scored a near-perfect score, I got to take a practice run. I chose "I Got You Babe", as I figure I am in that vocal quality range right around Sonny Bono, Ringo Starr or one of those morose indies who wished they could be Bryan Ferry but end up sounding like Fun Boy Three.
To my surprise, I hit the right note on far more notes than I missed, although my ratios were not nearly so good as my sister in law's. I still do a far better "Little Red Corvette" or "Surrender" in karaoke.
We phoned my father, who celebrated his 72d birthday. I'm glad he's my dad.
I went home and put power toothbruth sounds in my sampler, as well as a fellow making a student election speech. I am daydreaming about founding a free electronic music exchange for electronica fans who want to create their own music. Maybe even a convention--and then an oligarchy of original noise.