mid-summer update

At the beginning of this summer I wasn’t sure what I’d be doing for the duration of four months, and now two have gone by and this may be the third time I’ve opened up my laptop. Sitting with it open for 20 hours per day during the semester is a good way to get burned out on this whole technology thing. I do have to remind my mac I love her once in a while otherwise she will revolt.

My last post was from my second day at Bonnaroo, and I never posted finished photos so here are a few:

Other than drum-building, which I spent the majority of my time doing, I was able to see and hear some amazing sets: Old Crow Medicine Show, Eminem, Alison Krauss, Robert Plant, Matt & Kim, Florence & The Machine, GirlTalk, BassNectar, NOFX, Buffalo Springfield, Robyn, Lil Wayne, Primus, and Scissor Sisters (w/ Lady Gaga as a backup dancer). Not bad for a fest I got paid to be at.  The only shows I missed that I would have chopped an arm off for are Beats Antique and Arcade Fire.  I can’t wait until next year. I hope to do a few more drum workshops in the meantime. I’m planning another one here in Tallahassee for  early this fall.  It never occurred to me until recently that I could have written a thesis on my drum-building adventures. I know this seems like a big “duh!”, but I’ve been doing it off and on for so long that the phenomenology of it seems so second-nature.  I’m hoping an article will come out of it some day soon.

After Bonnaroo I was home for a few days after which I kidnapped several friends to New Orleans for a blast of a weekend. It was an odd one for me because I can’t remember a time when I’ve played tour-guide so intently. We even did the Katrina tour, including my old house which I hadn’t gone back to in years. I had a great time because my friends are so awesome, however I feel like I pushed and pulled them in a thousand different directions. I’m so passionate about the city and I want everyone else to love it as much as I do. I have to remember I can’t show people an entire city or ten years worth of memories in two days. I’m hoping next time can be a bit more relaxing, and filled with more of the lazy musicking I adore so much…

Here we are a few days from July and my research productivity has been close to zero. I have a giant stack of books with my name on it, and it’s time to get up close and personal with them in between soaking up this Florida sunshine and giving a hearty “Cheers!’ with some absolutely amazing friends.  We were supposed to head up to Kentucky this weekend for the Romp Festival in Owensboro where the Carolina Chocolate Drops, Steve Martin, and Emmylou Harris were taking the stage. Although I didn’t make it for financial reasons, I still have two major festivals to look forward to before the fall semester starts.

In a little over three weeks I’m heading north to spend some time with my family which will involve time on Cape Cod, in Central MA, a week on a reservation in northern NY, a few days in Quebec, and four days building drums and meditating at a festival in the Berkshires. I’m keeping my fingers crossed for a jolly 4th, a couple of St. George’s Island beach days, a weekend trip to Orlando’s Wizarding World of Harry Potter, and a FL coastal road trip to happen in the meantime.

For now, my house is a mess, I’m on Season 7 of The West Wing, I’ve got four drums sitting in my office which need to be finished, a stack of books begging to be read, and two dogs that need to run…. Cheers!



  1. Dani,
    I was watching No Reservations, New Orleans last night and they summed up the episode like this. I thought it was so fitting given our recent trip and your hospitality! I wanted to share with you! (the episode aired in 2008, for perspective).

    Dear America, I suppose we should introduce ourselves. We’re South Louisiana. We might be staying around your town for awhile. You probably already know we talk funny and listen to strange music and eat things you’d probably hire an exterminator to get out of your yard. We talk too much and laugh too loud and live too large, and frankly we’re suspicious of others who don’t. We make jokes at inappropriate times. You probably heard that many of us stayed behind. As bad as it is, many of us can not fathom a life outside our border, out in that place we call elsewhere. When you meet us now and look into our eyes, you will see the saddest story ever told. But, don’t pity us. We’re gonna make it. We’re resilient. And, one more thing, in our part of the country, we’re used to having visitors. It’s our way of life. So, when all this over and we move back home, we will repay to you the hospitality and generosity of spirit you offer us in this season of our despair. That is our promise, that is our faith.

    1. ayep… the great religion of Chris Rose. You should look him up 🙂 I remember when this was first published after the storm. On another note, I’ve never seen the NOLA episode of Bourdain’s show… now I have something to look for later!

      p.s. thanks for commenting 🙂

    1. Thank you so much 🙂 Festivals are like meditation retreats for me – they’re a gentle reminder of who I am and everything I believe in.

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