21.6.08

Rastafaris

The Rastafari movement was born in Jamaica in 1930 when news of the crowning of Ras Tafari (Haile Selassie) as King of Ethiopia, attracted the attention of various Jamaicans who had been to some extent influenced by Marcus Garvey. Haile Selassie is known to be Jah because of his direct ascendancy to King Menelik, son of King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba and King David and because of his inherited title, King of Kings, Lord of Lord, Conquering Lion of the Tribe of Judah, which identifies him as the living Jah whose coming was foretold in the Bible, Psalm 68.4, Revelation 5:2-5, 19:16, 22:16.

Various persons connected Garvey's prophecies of the crowning of a black king who would deliver black people from their oppressors, with certain biblical passages that confirmed to them that Selassie was indeed the Messiah.

Rastafari is not dreadlocks and a joint. It is a way of life that is not dependent on feigned social freedoms. Rastafari prefers to opt instead for something less material and more meaningful-truths and rights. In other words... being in the world but not of it.

Herb, Marijuana, Collie or Ganja are considered a Sacrament to Rastafarians and is used to act as a channel to a calm and conscious temporal spirit much as Christians and Jews use red wine. Rastas believe that this use of Ganja was granted to them by the words of Jesus in the fields of Zion, "God gives man all green herbs, trees and plants bearing fruit with seeds". This he did while standing in a field of Cannabis. Genesis Book 1 verses 11,12,29. Rastas also believe that smoking Ganjas will allow them to use positive common consciousness.

The Rastafari wear dreadlocks as an expression of inner spirituality. For them, the term "dread" refers to a "fear of the Lord", expressed in part as alienation from the perceived decadence and other evils of contemporary society and a return to the Covenant with the Almighty, Jah Rastafari.

Quote: Fernando Pessoa

Habíamos acabado de cenar. A mi lado, mi amigo el banquero, gran comerciante y notable estraperlista, fumaba como quien no piensa. La conversación, que había ido languideciendo, yacía muerta ante nosotros. Intenté reanimarla al tuntún, con algo que recordé de pronto. Me volví hacia él, sonriendo.

- Por cierto: hace poco alguien me dijo que en tiempos usted fue anarquista...

- Lo fui y lo soy. A ese respecto no he cambiado. Soy anarquista.

...

Por anarquismo entiendo aquella doctrina social extrema que proclama que no ha de haber entre los hombres mas diferencias o desigualdades que las puramente naturales, y que no han de pesar sobre los hombres penas y males distintos a aquellos que Naturaleza reparte...

La abolición, pues, de todas las castas, de la aristocracia, del dinero, de todas las convenciones sociales que promueven la desigualdad. La abolición, también, de todas las desigualdades sociales que se oponen a la Naturaleza: las patrias, las religiones, el matrimonio...


...

- Intenté dilucidar cuál era la primera, la más importante de las ficciones sociales. Sería esa la que debería, antes que ninguna otra, intentar subyugar, intentar reducir a la inactividad. La más importante, al menos en nuestro tiempo, es el dinero. ¿Cómo subyugar al dinero, o más precisamente, a la fuerza, la tiranía del dinero?...

...Lo más simple era apartarme de la esfera de su influencia, es decir, de la civilización; irme al campo a comer raíces y beber agua de los manantiales, andar desnudo y vivir como un animal. Pero eso, aunque no entrañase la menor dificultad, no era combatir las ficciones sociales; ni siquiera era combatir: era huir... ¿Cómo subyugar al dinero combatiéndolo?... Sólo de un modo - adquiriéndolo, adquiriéndolo en cantidad suficiente como para no sufrir su influencia; y cuanto mayor fuera la cantidad en que lo adquiriese, más libre estaría de su influencia...


O banqueiro anarquista, 1922.
Merci Raul.

16.6.08

Esbjorn Svensson died this weekend

Yes, he died while diving, while enjoying himself... What a loss. As in many other corners of the Internet, I wanted to dedicate tonight my corner to this great man, this talented genius, that made so many lives sound much better.

We still have a gem to discover. The last work of E.S.T. will be released this year, Lencocyte. Such a shame no more will come.

To you, Esbjorn, rest in peace.

15.6.08

Radiohead in BCN

I went with my brother Joan to Barcelona to see Radiohead in concert at Fórum (12-6-08). The event was called the DayDream festival, but to be honest it was just a mascarade to have a massive Radiohead bash: all the bands performing were even friends of the band (Liars), admired by the band (Faust, Modeselektor) or playing covers of the band (Enemc).


It was my 4rth Radiohead concert, my second one in Spain and the third one I watched with my good friend Albert. The night was promising: the sea, the weather, the people and the expectations, which never quite high enough for a band of this caliber, of this god-like stature. I was in for a dream-like ride, and oh dear I had one.

There were many highlights during the concert: the opening 15 Step, Bodysnatchers (so powerful), Airbag of course, The National Anthem as usual... Faust Arp was beautiful, with only Thom and Johnny on stage, already a favourite. If I had to choose the top 3 moments of the concert, those would be Optimistic (since I had never seen it live and absolutely love it), Videotape (in an almost completely different version from the CD, with all the members of the band involved in it) and, on the top spot, the opening of the second encore, the beautifully weird You and Whose Army?, a favourite of mine, with Johnny and Thom appearing both on the backstage screen from a cam over the piano, with Thom giving us his craziest looks.


For many reasons, I believe this was the best Radiohead concert I've been to. Never heard Thom's voice so strong, so convincing, to fragile when intended, so beautifully diverse. Joan mentioned to me surprised how they sound 'as in the CD'. Nope. They sound better. Bad bands never sound quite as in the CD. Great bands improve their recordings. Each song had a new twist, a new arrangement. Johnny would try a new riff, Thom a new voice line, Phil some new rhythm. Altogether, they owned the night and I found myself in a musical orgy, surrounded my thousands but alone with my pleasure, probably helped by Moroccan wonders. No wonder they are the best band in the world. Nobody gets even close to this.

I recorded a couple of videos during the concert. I post here two of them, quite large fragments of Pyramid song and of Paranoid Android. The track list included most of the new songs from In Rainbows (how I like Arpeggi/weird fishes and Jigsaw!), and some b-sides. They were all great. I just can't quite resist the classics. Enjoy.


video


video

14.6.08

Quote: Luke Rhinehart

'What is the dice man, Luke?' Lil repeated. She hadn't moved since entering the room. I saw Arlene start and felt her eyes upon me as I turned back to Lil.

'The Dice man,' I said slowly, 'is an experiment in changing the personality, in destroying the personality.'

'Is interesting,' Dr Krum said.

'Go on,' Lil said.

'To destroy the single dominant personality one must be capable of developing many personalities; one must become multiple.'

'You're stalling,' Lil said. 'What is the dice man?'

'The Dice Man (...) is a creature whose actions are decided from day to day by the roll of dice, the dice choosing from among options created by the man.'

. . .

The dice in position before him, he knelt silently for two minutes and prayed. He then picked up the two dice and began shaking them gaily in the bowl of his hands.

Tremble in my hands, O Die,
As I so shake in yours.

And holding the dice above his head he intoned aloud:

'Great bleak Blocks of God, descend, quiver, create,
Into your hands I commit my soul.'

The dice fell: a one and a two - three. He was to leave his wife and children forever.

The dice man, 1971