Given how the social situation around the world has affected everything and everybody, we’ve changed our game plan but the music goes on. Since travel is restricted, many of us can’t get together personally to record, so some of our efforts will advance using remote connections with our players; other projects will, by necessity, be either frozen or set to simmer on a back burner. The up side is that we now have time to do a few more SE remakes we wanted to do, AND to release some terrific material from our archives that we’ve been hoping to get to, but couldn’t fit in. These older as yet unpublished works will be badged STEWARDS ECLECTRIC ARCHIVES, and we're excited to have this opportunity.
ON the TECH docket:
On a technical note, modern workstation software will supercede the aging Tascam DA38 DAT recording machines we’ve used for some multi-track recording purposes since the beginning of some decade in the last century! These old machines continue to work, but age degradation of the obsolete tape makes reliable use problematic. We’ll keep them around for studio transfer and archival work, but we’re moving on to the modern production format.
MORE multi-genre MUSIC under construction:
We're bringing up some things demo'd or never finished to be re-recording, most notably The John Lennon Big Apple Blues, penned the evening of Dec. 8, 1980. It’s been long enough now that I might be able to finish it, and someone might actually want to hear it, even though I still hate it.
Then we’re headed back into the country for a couple. One is a shitkicker about making maple syrup in the backwoods north country. The other is a sentimental deer hunting yarn in the progressive country genre. Both written years ago, getting ready for the light of day.
A 'new old' rock-style piece in the works pays homage to old rocks. (Can you say "Puma Punku"? No? How 'bout: "Big Horn Medicing Wheel?") Lyrics inspired by one of the all-time classic B&W movies - all speaking to the near future. Is that possible? Check back to find out.
We've got a light-hearted heavy-handed satire in the 'funk-jazz-rock' category, (yet another hybrid of 'recognized musical genres'.) So stand by to smell the sweet breezes of those tropical islands long fabled in song and story, and your well-deserved vacation to "Lissners Atoll" !
And: another one of our popular 99% instrumentals with all the bells and whistles of another train ride on the left coast.
© Copyright - Stephen Steward / Sky Camo Records
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Everyone at the musicians’ consortium was amazed but not surprised when it was revealed that Director Steve ‘The Steward’ was to be honored as one of the first three inductees into the Unheralded and Independent Artists Now Here Hall of Fame. [Article follows]
U&I Artists Hall of Fame Ceremony Honors First Inductees
By Crow Byrdland McCaw [Excerpted. *See magazine for the full article.]
The first annual induction ceremony of the Unheralded and Independent Artists Now Here Hall of Fame, (otherwise known as U & I AR NOWHERE) was held on Feb. 3 at the former Covert City Masonic Temple. It had been previously determined likely that nominee Steve The Steward had played there to a sold-out crowd with his high school rock band, and initial promotional releases gave this as the reason for selecting the venue. It was later speculated that promoters could have yielded to a favorable rental agreement for the hall since they scheduled the inaugural event during the Super Bowl. If fact, this may also have limited RSVP-ers and others in attendance.
The ceremony got underway with a short film outlining the sanctioning body’s charter. It centered on revered impressionist Vincent Van Gogh , explaining that the lack of any acknowledgement from the art community (or even his family), let alone any monetary recompense for his work, was the source of most of his troubles - pre-ear debacle. The message being: when he was NOW HERE, he was NOWHERE - and never saw a cent of the millions paid for his art years beyond his lifetime. After this came various sound bites of the nominees while lucky patrons of the arts enjoyed a sumptuous dinner of creamed chicken and peas. As dessert was being served, (Neapolitan ice cream block on Nabisco graham wafer), examples of honorees’ best known works were exhibited, encompassing art, sculpture, railroad car graffiti and music. This was accompanied by one of Steward’s compositions, finishing in an extremely high decibel range.
Following the collection of complimentary disposable earplugs, Steve The Steward launched into a mercifully abbreviated acceptance speech, thanking family, teachers, mentors and friends. [*See complete article for details.]
In closing remarks, Steward hoisted above his head the U&I Hall of Fame statuette, the unique and coveted 'NowHere’. [For those unfamiliar, the physical award is constructed using a faux-marble base with the words NOWHERE HALL of FAME and the inductee’s name inscribed just below on a vague imitation of gold. Leading up from the base is a small pedestal with absolutely nothing above that.] The Steward then said wryly, “This – THIS is why we are all now here!” - and, releasing his left arm from its vertical position, dropped the ersatz Grammy doo-whammy to the stage, shattering it in a thousand pieces, (ala Cornell Professor Harlan Banks).
The audience gasped in surprise. A few nervous laughs, and one cough. Then cheers and laughter erupted from much of the audience, while holdouts glanced furtively here and there in mild disgust at what they thought should be considered bad taste. But truth and the majority ruled, resulting in wild applause that lasted for several seconds, followed by a standing ovation. It wasn’t noted until after two dozen of the not-quite-SRO crowd filed out of their seats that their rising was perhaps an attempt to get to the local Burger King before midnight, for, in honor of the first U & I AR NOWHERE Hall of Fame ceremony, (as well as the Superbowl), special arrangements had been made to serve breakfast menu all night.
*Reprinted with the kind permission of the publishers of Wasting Time Magazine, March 2019
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