Thursday, February 15, 2007

Barn & Snow

Barn & Snow, originally uploaded by Gramma Kit.

I grew up with a barn. This barn in fact. When we moved to Mass. I wanted to buy a house with a barn, or have the opportunity to build one.

In 1998, a month or two after I graduated from CU and days before I moved to San Francisco, the barn was repaired. It hadn't been touched in probably close to 75 years. We hired Woodford Bros. a local outfit that restores barns all over NY, PA, and OH. It took them three days to shore up the barn and get it ready for the next 100 years.

My mother wants to put a plaque in the barn to commemorate the restoration and explain why we did it. That's a story for another time. For now, I just want to enjoy the blanket of winter snow.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Frankie Laine

I glanced down at the last item in the What's News column of today's WSJ and saw that Frankie Laine passed away at the ripe old age of 93. I found out about Frankie Laine late in my life, but I sure do enjoy his music.

I was 30 years old and a stay at home dad. My mother was in town to visit her new granddaughter. While the baby napped my mother and I talked about music. My wife had gotten me a record player for my birthday and I'd begun picking up bargain LPs at a great place over in North Beach near where I worked. I'd put on a record and listen while the baby slept or I'd just spin records through the morning and afternoons in lieu of turning on the TV. I don't recall us having an internet that I think of it.

Anyway, my mom liked the records and took to reading issues of Mojo that were laying around. After reading about the Rosemary Clooney album Blue Rose and the album she did with Bing Crosby called "Fancy Meeting You Here" we set off one day to find it at Jack's in the Lower Haight. When we got there, my mother astounded me by talking to the guy (Jack?) about all sorts of music for at least an hour. With the baby asleep in the Bjorn, I just walked around looking for blues records and asking dumb questions, clutching Fancy Meeting You Here (mint condition) and a nice Frankie Laine album. In the end, my mom bought all the records, probaby $80 worth, and each one is a gem.

The Frankie Laine album I have is now one of my daughter's favorites. We all love Wild Goose and That Lucky Old Sun, but really the whole album is fantastic from beginning to end. When I get around to it, I'll upload a picture of the album we have...I didn't find it in 5 minutes of searching the internet. I can't believe more people out there aren't talking about that album, but that's okay. We all love it. Thank you, Mr. Laine!