Sunday, August 28, 2011

Last summer days' rays

Thursday, August 25, 2011

now we're cookin': new music, promo video for Integr8d Soul

R.E.M.'s "Country Feedback" with Marc on vocals and guitar, Lue on keys, lead fills

By now, you can tell, with time, this is going to be memorable.

An unplugged dose of "Hysteria"

An original, from our live broadcast last week

Be Chill, Cease ill

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Welcome video! Our online at home sound: Integr8d Soul

If you are NOT on the Pacific coast, adjust for time !! We are three hours behind the East Coast, for example. copy and paste this to see tickets! Welcome to our concert site! It's easier than visiting all four hundred or so houses we invited but it's almost as fun!!!

our welcome video, for new people on, for example

an after-show encore just for our fans

An earlier Ustream recording before we improved resolution

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

our day

Making stuff up!!! It's all right!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Sticking your neck out for a friend: making up real stuff

So, one creative idea my friend wants to try out is telling some of his favorite moments around the house, slices of life, and then maybe finding a story that strings some of these together like making a bead necklace.

Well,we'll have to know the length of the string, but we can cut it according to what we want the beads to look like together, what patterns we want to preserve.

So, he wants me to use my magical brain travelling power to help him pull together something worth sticking his neck out for.

I know what would really be the easiest thing to observe, the memories that he wants to remember and the things said he wants to preserve. Wherever he takes this story with his daughter's ideas, I know their close bond is truly important content in his finished in a way, I may not know the plot yet, but I know to what end he wants to make this: appreciation.

So, I wrote him back that, basically, I want to start by helping him make up real stuff, or as I so busily put it:

‎:-D I want to write many of the straight out, naturalistic, real moments that happen and build the narrative around that. Introduce them being themselves, so we can absorb setting and tone. From those, we can observe character, as we must approach each character like: "this is all I know about 'em, if I watch them do these things in the sentences, I'll begin to understand their attitudes and opinions and become aware of how scenarios might call together a sequence of internal questions and suppositions." I mean, if you know how your characters achieve peace, for example, you can figure out what factors might be necessary to take that peace away, and how then do they react? You will figure out what problems you want them to conquer based on what will challenge their assumptions.

Remember, the reader knows only what you show, so pick a few scenes of show and they will quietly establish character traits while you keep their dossiers close to your vest and demonstrate their mentalities and objectives as serves your story. Picture your scene by the faces, pace it by their expressions and body language.

A few simple scenes, one simple sentence, is where your invitation to the reader begins. Allow the reader to possibly draw their own conclusions based on how they interpret a given moment; someone might be an a-hole in a rushed moment, but turn out to be sweet as pie when the chips are down. Never defend your beloved characters too much from making mistakes and being judged by the reader. What the characters learn to appreciate or learn not to try again is sewn into the lining of any ten second scene you devise. Just tell a few of those at random and watch a pattern envelope.

Integr8d Soul jams live via Ustream: In Disguise, Country Feedback, Dreams

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Check us out live on Thursdays for free on!

Here's a quick highlight:

Another verse from an Angela teen favorite

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Isn't that the way they say it goes? Integr8d Soul presents Jim Croce

Jim Croce died in a plane crash in 1973, but not before writing and recording many of the best loved singer-song writer hits of American pop culture. It is said Jim stopped with his songwriting partner/ wife Ingrid just two blocks from my home here in downtown and said, "I love the feeling of this place, this spot. When I come back from the next tour, I think I'd like to make our home here."

Today Ingrid is the patron of Croce's, a Creole restaurant that features jazz music, including Steph Johnson and her band ever other Tuesday. I've rocked out to them more than once, they are wonderful and Steph's written new material to go with standards. I would like to think Jim would be right at home there, and who's to say...

Here is my dead of night quietly (and hastily) rendered tribute to his tender "Time in a Bottle,"

and here is our dual effort one afternoon on another favorite, the sardonic drunk dialing attempt with the uplifting melody, "Operator." Hope to turn this out in its two guitar glory one day this year. All music and copyright 1972 Jim Croce and Atlantic Records.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Highlights from Integr8d Soul music on the air ( Thursdays)

Put your tiny hand in mine...

...there's calm in your eye, and I'm getting blown away
another quick highlight, from our original music!

Did you know you can create your own version of our highlights you liked? You can take your favorite part or the funniest part of a video from us and use the "highlight" function to make a copy that begins and ends where you like most!!!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Integr8d Soul Dog Days of August show

We haven't played Something Not Quite There in some months. I remembered I'd basically reversed most of the chord pattern with which we had played the song since the Marc Kane wrote it as Angela Dawn Disharoon in 1999.

Here's fifteen candid minutes of our show. We are less casual when there's more audience, but at least we were there, giving the vocals special attention and trying out one of her teen favorites from George Michael.

It feels like I need to come up with somethin really unusual or funny to say to make this column memorable for you, but I'm sooo close to bedtime and I feel like the songs speak for themselves.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Straight talk about life: Insight paired with decision.

I think the question of our past poses a lot of imaginative insight. Who was the first person to worry? Why, in place of doing, did this develop? One thing we can know: whoever that was did not let worry stop them from living. We don't know what part worry played in that person's death, mind you, but they at least had progeny, protected and taught to act by someone.

There is a fear in the face of physical danger that is something like the beginnings of worry, a fear for the loss of that with which one identifies, and past the point at which this feeling informs us we might need to change direction, quickly, anything that embraces fear, over that window of decision, is worry. You have nothing more to lose, or gain, than your life, after all.

A decision to do anything constructive in any way is one of two directions away from one's dilemma, for which one prepares as best as one can. A suggestion of some such thing to do can emerge from inner silence, as well. Clearing your mind is the one survival technique I advise you to build, for finding the best use of your patience and love. There's nothing for a hot situation like a cool head. When you are not held hostage by your emotions, your worry, your anger, you can see things as an ongoing association of relationships.

Insight paired with decision.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Shows on Monday and Thursday this week: here's us, live

New from Monday!

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Friday, August 5, 2011

How does a grand idea become a story?

So, the day I join a new indie comics website, I get a request from someone local to draw a comic book that will make us legends. Well, you can't fault his enthusiasm, and without that, the most skilled and cerebral of minds still doesn't get very far.

So, I ask, what is the story idea?

He insists on talking about it. Uh-oh. Writers, write. They talk, but they set down their fundamental ideas, and make a thing called a pitch that explains why you would care about what has been written.

So, he wants a writing partner. Okay.

I ask: who is the character, what does he care about, is he happy when he wakes up in the morning, who does he love, what does he fear, where does he live, what are his weaknesses, what are things he needs to improve in his life, and so on. What's he look like?

Nope. It's apparently not how this idea works.


So I ask for a pitch.

"I want to write about all the world's mythologies."

Okay, rich territory. So what's the first story? What's tying the concept together?

Then, I get a list, of a couple hundred world religions/ mythologies/ belief systems.


Here was my response, complete with the beginnings of story inspired by this idea, detached from high-concept to provide the missing ingredient to demonstrate it in an understandable way. Can't wait to see how that plays out! Hope it gives you some food for thought in an entertaining fashion.

That's a terrific basis for studying mythology. What is your first story? What is the first thing you want to tell that has a beginning and ending? Who is its main character? What is the problem? What changes?

I was trying to tell you it may well be next year before we can draw pages, because of the projects I detailed.

"Finite" is a more concise word than limited--- I mean, a set number, as in, a set number of characters. Most myths revolve around two to five characters---not the mythologies, but the individual stories. See if you don't find it's true. There's nothing wrong with high concept---if there is a deeper psychological or spiritual set of questions you want to explore, that's great. But you have to set loose characters with whom your readers can identify in some way.

Remember, each individual myth has a person or god---a character---at its center, who then interacts with a limited cast of supporting characters. For example: we love Samson because Delilah tempted him and he sacrifices his life in an amazing feat: we care about Samson. We are rooting for him because we have been with him on his hero's journey, when he fights the lion, when he battles using only the jaw bone of an ass. He begins as one type of character, and changes, and changes again because of what he's learned.

Most important : decide on an ending. Even if you want to continue someone's exploits, you have to know where your plot's going. If you want to make a huge book with a story that's a couple of pages long, you still want to know how your chapters end, for the sake of pacing.

What type of story do you want to tell to start off your series? What is its tone? What kind of elements does it have, what places is it set. These are the things a writer has to understand. it really starts, though, with which characters you throw together. Some idea links them. Sometimes the link and the cast come together as though at the same time. You uncover the character's motivations, one at a time. You have to make a story that you find believable in some way, with its own, consistent logic.

My partner's started her own story borrowing two mythological figures and mixing them with three of our own, and is creating a plot she began five minutes ago. Something's stolen, so there's a plot, moving the action, motivating the characters.

She began with the characters she made, who have distinct personalities. Only by setting them loose with the other three will she hear the voices of the other two---Thor, and Samson, in this case---and from there figure out how their relationships work as they undertake their journey. She hasn't decided who is going to change, if anyone---the point may be that the gods are unchanging in their ways and the faerie Teasberry is great.

She's decided on a light, child-like tone, with a mystery at its center, so the bounds of possibility are wide. It may be no more than that, but it's a demonstration of how you develop an idea for a story. Some are based on character development, and some have less sophisticated representations, like those for an all-ages audience. (Of course, that could change...)

She is using mystery---that is, there are things the characters don't know at the beginning. In this case, someone's stolen Thor's hammer. There's always someone with an agenda at work in each tale.

Now she's added some romance (perhaps, as part of the history between two characters) and the Lady of the Lake, and I've added my two cents as well about how Thor gains the ability to look for his hammer. But notice how Thor and his unknown antagonist are the main characters around which the rest revolves. The antagonist, in comic books, really moves the plot, because they are the ones who create the circumstances that engulf the hero. It is interesting to give the supporting cast their own set of concerns along the way, so they, too, have stories inside the story.

Remember your audience does not know all of these mythologies, but only explain them and illustrate them in ways that move the story. If they wanted a lecture, they'd sign up for You must be prepared to introduce and develop every major character in each story, and let characters say things, demonstrate things. The audience may look things up after they read a great story, but they most assuredly will not do homework just to read a story. If they realize you are teaching them, they will run.

One other resource:

As editor in chief, Shooter helped hone the trade of many excellent professionals and learned from and worked with the best, himself. His advice has become at least half of what I tell when answering creative questions.

Most of all, be prepared to commit to your craft for many years. Sometimes you will work on characters and ideas for years before you can introduce them, fully-realized. I suggest, since you are in school with this idea, at least a class or two, if not a minor, in anthropology, and write as much as possible, and as many stories as you can complete.

Good luck!