Tuesday, October 11, 2011 - still under construction but...
Once a man was given a tour of Heaven and hell. The door to hell was opened before him and he was amazed to see a banquet hall furnished with the best of everything. Food, wine, you name it.
Yet all the people were in extreme anguish. Starving, screaming profanities and hitting each other. Very terrible.The problem was, instead of arms with elbows, they had long forks and knives that did not bend. They could not get the food into their mouths. Horrified the man closed the door.
Next he was shown Heaven. Heaven was exactly the same - a banquet hall furnished with the best of everything. Even the long forks and knives that did not bend - making it impossible for the people to feed themselves.
Yet, all the people in Heaven were singing, Praising God, and having a wonderful time. They were feeding each other!
While I see far more "Heaven" in the participants of Nashville Open Mics - I do see room to help each other more. Instead of each one absorbed with their personal career, what if like minds banded together to create something far better that would elevate a whole group? (See "potentials" below)
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NashvilleOpenMics.com is still quite new yet I see many avenues it might take. While the below is the highest aspiration I have for it - please consider this site a "blank page" waiting to be written. I hope to hear your ideas.
One thing I can see already - there are people visiting the site from across the country and even around the world who are spending an hour or more looking at the various performances. This is a good sign to me.
As we grow and get more and more artists on the site I expect this to continue. Over time I think we could build up a reasonable following of people interested for various reasons including great entertainment. To help this potential I hope to soon start a "favourite performances" page that should be good enough to hold attention and prompt further exploration of the site.
At the same time we should rise closer and closer to the top of search engine results for people entering keywords "Nashville Open Mics". (Which about 800 people per month do.) In this way we should accumulate an even larger following. You can help on this by linking any sites or facebook etc. pages to NashvilleOpenMics.com This is looked on favourably by the search engines.
In the meantime I hope to enlist artists that are interested in forming a troupe and writing songs, skits, etc. specifically for a whole show called "Nashville All Stars" or something like that. Initially we could set up a new Saturday night venue (private home or whatever) to get to know each other and do several songs each. Which would - of course be recorded on this site. Also we could then brainstorm new ideas. Form a real troupe.
Simultaneously it could then be possible to start advertising with Google adwords etc., the new venue - (or existing ones who would like to participate) - competing in the larger market of tourist destinations in Nashville. I think many tourists would like to see new "up and coming Open Mic All Stars" - if they knew about it. Hopefully making it possible to pay the artists depending on some profit scale. Why not?
This could all be happening in conjunction with my highest ambition - a "Jesus Christ Superstar" equivalent called "Repent!". If enough people in "the troupe" could catch that vision it may be we could pull off something not only "undeniable" but timely. While it is understood that "Repent!" might not seem too catchy a theme - it might also be that with a collaboration of creative minds. - It would take some getting to know each other.
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Easycart.com - the 1st online shopping cart software on the Internet.
That may seem like a strong statement but it is verifiable at "The Wayback Machine" - What is the Wayback Machine? "The Wayback Machine is a historical archive of preserved web pages...The Archive collaborates with institutions including the Library of Congress and the Smithsonian."
You can see for yourself at The Wayback Machine by clicking here that Easycart was first picked up on December 1, 1998.
Interesting also is that we proceeded google. According to a "whois" lookup - Easycart was created on June 11, 1997 beating Google by three months.
Anyone who can prove me wrong on this - 1st cart on the Web - I'll award them $5.00!
At any rate we were/are a small, under funded, family business and we didn't quite keep up with the better funded carts that soon appeared.
On the other hand we are very good after long years of experience at "slam dunking" projects that are a good fit for Easycart, and I hope you will consider me as your go to guy with any ecommerce/website projects you may have. We are fast, good and very reasonable.
(click here to go to the current Easycart site.)
I recently spent two years (summer 2008 - summer 2010) editing and narrating forty nine hours of the "Legends of The Jews" compiled by Louis Ginzberg (1878-1953). Ginzberg spent over forty years compiling these stories which were the Oral Tradition at the time of Jesus. That Jesus, the Apostles and early Christians were familiar with these stories is explained at the site - you may find it quite interesting.
If you are interested in donating to Nashville Open Mics please consider purchasing some of the MP3's available at this site. You will not only be helping out but learning valuable information.
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Pretty much whole family except 2 sons-in-law and 1 daughter-in-law and 12 grandchildren. From 2009.
In 2009 my youngest son, John, (2 daughters, 6 sons, 1 wife, 13 grandchildren) was the Denver Post high school "Basketball Player of the Year" and won a Scholarship to Ave Maria University in Florida.
I drove down from Colorado to watch some games and was surprised that Nashville was smack dab in the middle of the road. As a long time closet songwriter I would be a "coward forever" if I didn't stop in and participate in at least one open mic. Turned out to be the Bluebird and there were so many performers that night that I wasn't supposed to be able to play - so I could just relax and watch. I was enthralled. The talent was so good yet very little - if any - pretense. A warm friendly crowd. Very comfortable.
Turned out I did get to play. Number 38 that night. Last one. Not many people still there but I felt pretty good about it. Whoda thunk there was such a thing as songwriter "birds of a feather". I liked it a lot. Not to mention the graciousness of the people. New to me. Also I was struck by the warm Christianity displayed in Nashville - very refreshing.
Since then I wanted to get back. Finally in late February, 2011- for various reasons including the need to hopefully squeeze out one more career - I went back to try my hand. (One reason being that through open mics I might be able to make contacts into Christian radio and promote "The Legends of The Jews" (below.) Which I still would like to do.) I was there for about 2 weeks and did participate at the Commodore, Nashville Palace and Bluebird. Still felt pretty good just soaking up the atmosphere. Then I came back to Crested Butte for personal reasons and on the way home got the idea of NashvilleOpenMics.com. Because I have owned and operated Easycart.com for the past 13 years I have all the tools and experience needed.
Getting back to Nashville I was wondering how this idea would be accepted. Debi Champion - host at the Commodore - was supportive. It is no wonder she is so well loved. So after a few weeks I feel reasonably comfortable that NashvilleOpenMics.com may have potential for many and various reasons. (More on that below.)
I do not consider NashvilleOpenMics.com as "mine" - but a potential blessing to anyone who has ideas and wants to participate. At this point it is an unwritten book. If you have ideas please contact.
The only rule is that material be family friendly. At the same time I am open to various opinions such as the Lost Dog performance at Cafe Coco, (below) in which Benjamin proclaims he "burned down the church". Taken in context I think he may have a understandable point of view. From an honest young man's perspective. I wouldn't mind lighting a fire under the church myself!
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Again - referring to thoughts regarding "The Legends of The Jews" - on my initial trip to Nashville (above) the thought kept passing through my mind. "why does music exist"? The Legends go into quite a bit of detail about the reasons for most everything - yet music is never really explained. It seems to be present from the very beginning as a means of praising The Almighty.
Also I kept thinking of certain passages regarding Abraham when he was in search of The Promised Land. At one point he came to a region he found quite lewd and uncomfortable and said; "I hope this isn't the promised Land"! Later he came to a region in which he found the people honest and industrious. He hoped this was the Promised Land and it was!
As I was headed to Ave Maria University, and somewhat in need of my own Promised Land, I wrote this song about an hour out of Nashville heading for Florida. The phrase "Lord help me Jesus, show me which way to go" is the Nashville side of it.
After this short visit to Nashville another thought prompted by The Legends came forward. It seems that Paradise is one of the lower forms of Heaven. Upon entrance to Paradise one is free to enjoy all it's benefits - and "if found worthy", one is elevated higher still. Nashville seems to me a lot like Paradise. If I were independently wealthy I would be quite content to just go participate in and enjoy open mics as a retirement hobby.
Still the question "why is Nashville so special" kept popping into my mind. I decided the answer might be found in the Churches. Now after only a month or so in Nashville I am convinced. There are so many "God Bless you's" flavouring Nashville I think they act as kind of a topspin - God just keeps blessing Nashville! As anyone familiar with Nashville knows, random acts of kindness occur on a daily basis. I believe this is because a significant percentage of Nashville citizens actually make a habit of reflecting, "how would I like to be treated in this situation" and then - following Jesus' Golden Rule - act accordingly.
Another thought that has taken hold in me is the idea that there have been Golden Ages in a few locales throughout history where the best and the brightest have gathered and truly made changes for the better. Ancient Athens being the prime example. I concluded that Nashville is one of those Golden Age locations. Even back in Ancient Athens there could have only been a few hundred real influential personages. They did not have modern transportation and media to spread the news. Today Nashville draws the best and the brightest musical talents from throughout the World! It was only after coming to this conclusion that I found out about the Parthenon. Then I learned that the original purpose of this replica was to establish Nashville as "The new Athens of the South". They did it! In my experience Nashville is a "place set apart". Truly a "playground of God". Where anything can and does happen.
To me - the open mics at the Bluebird Cafe are the prime example of a place were new talent/intelligence can be heard. A real "listening room", open to all comers. Worthy of any Golden Age.
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A few peope have expressed interest in forming a troupe of musicians to create a Hee Haw style review. It would be family friendly, good time, Gospel, Country, Rock type review. Comedy etc.
Fayth Kirk of Wiskers and Poochie fame has come up with a name for the group that I think is excellent "Better Together!" (Kinda like the ol' Heaven and Hell story above.)
If we put this show together and get it rehearsed a bit I think we could then begin to show it around and maybe get some buzz going. If it grows we could continue to fine tune and improve to the point we might be able to support our own venue and continue to hone a "Jesus Christ Superstart" equivalent - as explaine somewhat above.
All profits would be "share and Share alike" according to Time, Talent and and/or Treasure invested.
If you think you might be interested in exploring this idea with other interested parties please contact = mike@NashvilleOpenMics.com
As stated elsewhere - I do not consider NashvilleOpenMics.com as just "mine". Any and all ideas are appreciated.
God Bless you,
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