Fun, Music and Games

One week ago I was, like often, on the market with my girl friend. At the center there is some green space that you can't see easily from the outer ring where the business happens. At a moment I heard faintly some nice sounding guitar music. It seemed pretty nice so I decided to investigate … and there was this guy sitting on an amp below a tree with his acoustic guitar … with only a handful of spectators. He played some funky stuff that I liked – also the sound was very good.

Then he started to sing and I was surprised – it was pretty good! It's not unusual that musicians play at the "Boxhagender Platz", that's how this place is named. Sometimes the music is good, sometimes not. This time I liked it that much that I bought the CD after having heard only few songs. Later, we listened to the CD at home and even went to his concert the same night. 😉

His music is a nice mix of blues, jazz, soul, funk and certainly plenty of other influences. If you go to Rob's MySpace Site I recommend to listen first to"It's Jazz Baby", and then to "Number Through …". Other great songs of him are on the CD.

It's great to discover good music and musicians this way!! 🙂
It is said, that people don't buy CDs anymore … well when I see musicians play music that I like, I buy their CDs!! (And all of them have been DRM-Free so far!)

My girlfriend discovered a real party gem: Soul Explosion

That's dancing to nice groovy, funky soul music … Think of James Brown and you'll know the style. You can listen to some samples on their site if you go to the Top 5 section and click on the typo beside each disc image.

We've been there last night and it was great! Great music = *can't stop, must dance*. Unfortunately, later the volume went too much up and reached a level where you need to protect your ears.

We will certainly try to go to the next ones, too. In meanwhile I need to train some moves like this.



Finally I am finding some time to write about something that I enjoyed ~2 weeks ago. FUNK'N'STEIN – The Band! That's some cool dudes from Israel doing some nice funky music !!

A friend of us dragged us to their concert, here in Berlin. None of us knew them before but after merely 30 seconds I got a big smile on my face and my body started to move. And it didn't end until the end of the show! We really had a great time. Here are some photos. Sorry for the crappy quality, my phone is still more a phone than a photo camera 😉 

Funk N Stein in Berlin    Funk N Stein in Berlin    Funk N Stein in Berlin

Once somebody told me that he thinks that funky music is superficial as most of Funk is about dancing, cheering and having a good time together. I don't think that's superficial as this kind of 'feeling' and 'attitude' is something that the world needs more. In addition to this, as I said, Funk'N'Stein is from Israel and thus the bad situation in that region plays a role in some of their song texts, too.

Anyways, if you like it funky then go and checkout the site of FUNK'N'STEIN which has music and videos.



Wow ! Have a look at this – if you are have no patience go straight to 2:35


Even on a normal acustic guitar, he does amazing stuff – it's on a very high technical level but it's clearly about music not technique… great!


If you like it, make sure to see his other videos too! His name is Andy Mckee.

Ten years ago or so, I also created a little guitar piece (but on a E-Guitar, much easier to play!) where I was also doing harmonic stuff with the right hand on the fretboard (tapping and sliding). I got the idea from a promo session with … ops, I forgot her name … she played with Michael Jackson on tour … ah, her name is Jennifer Batten. So on that promo tour for her solo CD and an effect machine, she did those slides with the right hand and so it inspired me to experiment with that. Slides are not so difficult but tapping a triad (accord of 3 notes) isn't that easy and for me doing this cleanly (without unwanted noise/notes) was always also a question of luck .. hehe 😉 Therefore seeing him doing this on an a-guitar, clean and with those percussion things … everything in a musical way … just WOW !

Today a played a bit guitar. Nowadays I am doing this unfortunately very, very rarely… the computer is now eating most of the time. But I'll soon see my little brother who started playing guitar too, so I need to warm up a bit 😉 I have this Epiphone 335 (?) copy with .11 strings (bigger than usual) on it and after a improvisation session on a backing-track my finger are hurting … especially string bendings were painful at the end … hmmm …  just like in old times


Today I found a newsletter from GameSpot announcing a World Premiere:

 Visit GameSpot on Friday and be the first to download the DarkStar One demo

The thing is, it’s already on my hard disk and I already played through the story part of the demo. After checking two sites and running the game once again, it got clear to me: I have the german version, downloaded from a german site. So its probally the world premiere for the english version – but that’s not mentioned. Wink

About the game: if you like games like Elite, Free Space and Freelance then you can download it and give it a try. I liked it. It’s very colorful which one may like or not but at least it stands apart from other products like EVE online (very beautiful)

Dark Star One Demo - Battle  Dark Star One Demo - Inside an asteroid 

The friday the 17th of february 2006 I’ve been in the ‘Kesselhaus’ (Kulturbrauerei, Berlin) to a tribute show for Bon Scott from AC DC.

I had a flyer where it was announced that 15 local cover bands will play that night but I think finally there were "only" ten bands. As we had to join a party later, therefore we left after the 6th band or so. The good thing was, that I only disliked 2 bands. Three of them were very, very good! I enjoyed them a lot and each one was unique. Unfortunally I don’t remember any names. I found some names on the web but it doesn’t help me much to know who is who neither: B.O.N , TNT, High Voltage, Frogcircus, Mentis, Respawn, Stirps, Dr. Kinski etc

Concert Ticket / Banner

The first band
was really the worst and that a lot due the singer. The singer had no presence and no power – it really didn’t touched the public.

The second band
had a charismatic singer, very good voice and a lot of power. He really started to bring some good vibrations – especially with his ‘strange body language’ and running all around. It’s not something one has never been seen before but this, his voice and interaction with the public created a good show. The guitars we very distorted and the lead guitar wasn’t very well percieved due this and the constant loundness of the guitars.

The third band
I didn’t like this one very much. The band was much better than the first band. I am not sure anymore but I think the guitars were also very distorted but the lead guitar came through much better. But the singer … hmm … he had a gay touch and that really didn’t hook me. Don’t get me wrong – I’ve nothing at all against homosexuals. But with this singer I had the impression of seeing a musical or a parody – not good hard rock music.

The forth band
was the band without name. Also they just found their singer two days before the concert and that’s not all … the singer was black woman – what a surprise. The first minute her voice was a bit too much in the low frequencies for AC DC music I thought – but the voice … had something great. And then she rocked !!!! I can tell you I enjoyed this a lot. I like funky music, so I have also an affinity for black soul voices and this was a very good mix of a soul power voice and rock’n roll life style ! I really enjoyed their show because the guitars weren’t that heavyily distorted so one had a good distinction of sound, and the syncopaized  rythem and the lead came through really well – groovy! In addition to that the lead guitarist was imitating Angnus with a similar uniform, similar dances, moves etc. The guitars also changed loudness when needed so it really got good dynamics. Very well done!

The forth band - 01 The forth band - 02

The fifth band
were partly some old, cool men. And they were good hard rockers. Good guitars, also not too much distorted – with leads coming through very well and nice dynamics. The singer had a very good voice, and good presence. They rocked !

The fifth AC DC cover band The fifth AC DC cover band - 02

The sixth band – Respawn
was again something different, not really surpising but still unique until that point: AC DC goes metal. From a musical point of view I don’t like the metal where they scream all the time into mic like pigs – but somehow it makes me laugh. So from that perspective we had a lot of fun and enjoyed the show !

The 6th AC DC cover band - AC DC metalized