We have begun an audiovisual mash-up at Foundry Hall in South Haven, Michigan every first Thursday in 2012.  The next one is on June 7 at 8pm.  This involves live mixing of video loops with electronic music combined with acoustic music.  Sometimes a one man show by Julian Lauzzana, but often involving guest artists and audience participation.  There is generally some archival footage (such as commercials, news reel footage, NASA clips…) as well as some “eye candy” integrated with post modern artifacts in the digital domain.  There is some prep work, but most of the show is highly improvisational.  This is a love/hate interplay between man and machine, an electronic dance exhibiting the collective tribal trauma that humans now face due to our dependencies and reliance upon our machines.  The technosphere is the final stage before total spiritualization of matter on planet earth.  Say hello to the ghosts in the machine, we put them there.  $5 suggested donation.

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Julian and his family found their way to South West Michigan last summer and have now established roots in South Haven on the shores of Lake Michigan. Primal Digital headquarters is now located at South Haven’s creative vortex Foundry Hall.

outside

Foundry Hall exterior


This community event space is primarily a live music venue but also hosts all sorts of events, including film screenings (more on that in the future) and is available to rent for private events. Primal Digital, in collaboration with Foundry Hall, will offer live audio and video recording for musicians playing at Foundry Hall.

michigan
Wrapping up projects, connecting with people, and getting the plan in order before we leave Portland at end of June.

We have decided that Michigan will soon be our home! I am still teaching one movie making class to kids after school at Robert Gray Middle School, which is a zombie film! I love this work, but it along with other cool projects I have been immersed in, bring in very little income. Land is cheaper in Michigan, family is closer, and perhaps my primal digital projects will be more fruitful in SW Michigan. We also have some other community building projects in mind which will come to the surface soon.

As a manifestation of synchronicity, many people I have collaborated with since arriving in PDX are having events, screenings and gatherings so that I can touch base in a good way before leaving. For example, two works-in-progress which I screened during the Hillsdale Microcinema last year, are now complete and just premiered in Portland last week! The Escape of Middle C by Bev Standish and Play Again by Ground Productions.

Last weekend the family and I hung out with Tony Deis and Trackers NW for a potluck and discussion about hyper-local living, family values and exponential expansion of ecovillages (among other topics). The Geezer Gallery last Sunday hosted a massive event “Grand Works Northwest” featuring music, workshops and art by elders at the Mark Building downtown Portland. I have met with them and the Aging Artfully Initiative and screened films at the Hillsdale MicroCinema, which will apparently be continuing on at the Watershed Building through Jim Corcoran.

More personal artistic projects? I am working on the first of a new primal digital video series entitled Better Ways which looks at better ways of doing things. I also edited an excerpt from Young Musicians of SW PDX show I did and will post that shortly. If I can pull it off, I hope to have a new podcast and web-casting set up soon as well. All that while I am moving and taking care of the baby. By Fall of 2010 Primal Digital HQ will again be set up in a new location. This time in South Haven, Michigan. In the meantime, enjoying the ride but wishing I could teleport to The Residents shows in Europe.

Earth Day Salute

April 23, 2010

It is also the birthday of Charles Mingus!  Music is one of the prime ways to honor the earth I do believe.  Praise the sun, the earth and primal source beyond human comprehension!

I recently lost my community garden.  Though I never was notified in writing or email, the plot defaulted back to Portland Parks and Recreation and has a new owner.  So, that was a tough hit.  But I got a LOT out of that garden, and managed to take some plants back to our patio, so we have some greens and such that are still going.  Also, I did not get the ED position at Lost Valley Educational Center and none of my youth media classes have been filling up this Spring.  So, many things are not going in my direction it seems.

However, what it really adds up to is that after this summer it seems a move back to Michigan may likely be in order.  This will be a difficult shift for the blended family of 9 (6 kids, 3 parents) – whose father lives in California – but will bring us closer to my mom, brother, cousins, step-sister, grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc.  Also, we can dwell cheaply in a beach house in South Haven that is well situated in a very productive agricultural and greenhouse zone and not far from Chicago!

This Sunday, April 25, I will give a “This I Believe” talk at West Hills Unitarian Universalit Fellowship. The basic outline is to first look at the entropic state we humans are in; based on various interconnected broken systems (war, politics, industry, technology obsession, fossil fuel extraction, fundamentalist re…ligion, GDP economy, profit driven healthcare and prisons, global food systems, etc.) and then present a comprehensivsit approach to doing more with less; while enjoying our lives more. Underlying it all…”the best ideas are ‘bad’ for the ‘economy’. Great and generous souls like Tesla, Bucky Fuller, Paolo Soleri, etc. have paved the way on that work. Now we just need to pull it together and stop trying to get back to “business as usual.” We need Radical Comprehensive Realignment, not just baby steps like compact fluorescent light bulbs and Priuses.

Following that, from 2-5 pm, I will be producing (together with Wilson Area Arts Council) and recording a live music event featuring local young musicians from SW Portland in Multnomah Village @ O’Connors.

So, la vida da vuelta, pero… life goes on and the signals create renewed clarity and inform direction. Happy 40th Anniversary, Earth Day!

Spring has sprung and that’s no April Fools.  Here are a couple pics from my community garden plot.  Been hanging out a lot there with my baby girl Aria.  She is eating lots of greens both raw and cooked!  Unfortunately our broccoli was beheaded a couple days ago.  It must have happened the night before I walked to the garden with a blade and bag to reap the harvest.  Well, that hurts, but I hope they were in need.  This garden has been well worth it, regardless of this crime against my humanity.

Tomorrow I am going in for an interview at Lost Valley Educational Center, where I hope to be living and working, ecovillage style.

A few weeks ago, on March 15, I saw Wes Jackson, founder of The Land Institute in Kansas, speak at Illahee lecture series.  This man is a huge player in the sustainable food movement.  A recent friend and collaborator invited me and, I must admit, I had actually never hear of Wes Jackson.  They are working on breeding perennial grains.  His presentation and life’s work is very compelling.  However, I have two fundamental problems with his approach.  One is that he believes we must focus the bulk of our energy on buying off senators and continue to spend our time, energy and resources on politics and advocacy work.  The other is that his work is based on the acceptance of our overwhelming dependence on grain and grain for beef production.  I believe that one (of many) key demands we must place upon ourselves, in order to continue living well on this planet, is to eat less meat, more locally produced foods, thus minimizing the need for foreign grains and meat.  Either way, though, I admire this man and learned a lot from him.  I also had the opportunity to meet with him briefly after his talk.  I look forward to a future with perennial grains!

youthonstage
Just wrapped a Spring Break intensive video production course on March 22-26 at Multnomah Arts Center in Portland, Oregon, USA. It was a bit crazy but we produced a lot of quality material. I incorporated theory and history in a new, more improvisational way throughout the week (rather than powerpoint at the beginning of class). This was an interesting new way of working. The class also used the theater stage and some props a bit more than in the past, so that was fun.

Just locked in another young local musicians gig for Sunday April 25 at O’Connors in Multnomah Village, Portland, Oregon, USA. Line up so far is two bands (Kittin and Squid Party) and several solo artists: MC NETT, (hip-hop lyricist/vocalist); Carrie Kitzke (singer/songwriter) and Emma Knox Hershey (vocalist). That should be a blast, once again. I am planning to record and release “Live at O’Connors” CD. Working with these talented young musicians from SW PDX High Schools has been great. One of my favorite projects since arriving in Portland. My wish is that this event be a regular continuing event (maybe quarterly) at O’Connors on Sunday afternoons and that the musicians take care of the live sound themselves and some of the promotions, so that they need very little help producing the show. This is actually pretty much the case, so sustaining the project is rather feasible.

Working with youth has really been the primary thrust of Pd work since arriving in Portland. Primal Digital, LLC now has a youth media production aspect to its portfolio. This is a really interesting development that began most serendipitously upon meeting Bev Standish almost two years ago at a Final Cut Pro User’s Group meeting. Turned out she needed help teaching an Animation Camp two summers ago. Telling stories is so important a craft to human civilization and mass media seem to be such a focal part of storytelling these days. Teaching youth to deconstruct mass media through the act of production is what its all about in these classes, though it is never blatantly so.

SWPDXYM