Thursday, November 5, 2009

Italy


Several people involved in Bryan's art foundation had a bit of a retreat in Italy about a week and a half ago. Since I'm married to the CEO, I got to go along as well. Italy is about a 3.5 hour drive from here. We had fun!
I'm about to inundate you with pic
tures...this is a photography kind of blog
anyways.






Walking around the town of Connobio





























A view of the Alps from the Italian side







'Nuff said

Thanks, Mom!

I think you're the only who looks at this blog anymore!

Love you!

Montreux



Last month, we took a break from the chaos and went to Montreux, which is located in the french-speaking part of Switzerland. It's right along Lake Geneva.











Montreux is a jazz city. The people here love jazz and make it known with so many little tributes all over the city. Here is a sculpture of Mr. Ray Charles. There were also other sculptures of Quincy Jones, Ella Fitzgerald and B.B. King.
We hung out at Sinatra's Bar and enjoyed a couple cocktails as we listened to the fantastic live jazz music.





Chateau de Chillon

One of the best, most interesting castle tours ever!
















Enjoying the waterfront














I really love this picture! There's a real serene feeling to it and it feels like something out of a dream to me.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Ballenberg


Ballenberg is an open air museum in Switzerland
that gives you an idea of what Switzerland used to be like. It features around a hundred or so century-old buildings from all over the country. Also included are farm animals and old-time gardens and some of the old machinery and traditions that were most prevalent in the last couple hundred years.
We spent hours walking around. It's pretty interesting to look at and one of the hugest exhibits I've ever seen. There is so much to see!. I took a ton of pictures but thought I'd highlight some of my favorite parts.




My most favorite part was going to the cheese house and seeing how they made cheese back in the day. You can see in this picture that the cheese maker is skimming the top of the surface of the water in the cauldron and taking the cheese curds. He then puts them into those buckets for cooling. We got to sample some fresh cheese and it was fantastic! One of the rooms in the house was a little cheese store and we bought several different kinds of cheese. They didn't last very long! We at them up pretty quick!





This is an old wine press. I could not believe how large it was!












Here are several cow bells. I couldn't imagine being a cow and having to wear one of these. They are really big and heavy!














An old office/reading room.















If you have any extra time, I'd encourage you to check out the website:

http://www.ballenberg.ch/en/Welcome


Like I said, there's so much to see and the pictures I've shown, along with my description, really don't do it any kind of justice at all.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Summertime

One of my favorite concerts I played/sang this summer was in August. I had the pleasure to play and sing with a jazz saxophonist from Germany named Uwe Steinmetz. We met in Austria back in May during the arts conference I was at. Since we knew we'd be playing at the same place in Basel in August, we decided to do couple songs together. It was one of those moments where the excitement gets to you and you can't stop smiling like you got the biggest piece of chocolate cake out of everyone else.
I've only written one jazz song in my life and couldn't wait to hear how it would sound with a saxophone. Does it sound stupid that I got goosebumps from my own song? One thing that's so great about collaborating with other musicians is that you get to see them take a song and go some place with it that you could never go. He hit it out of the ballpark. It was a grand slam...a homerun...a plethora of goosebumps...whatever you want to call it. I REALLY wish I had a recording of it, but I don't. My camera ran out of battery power right around that time.
Uwe's choice of song that we collaborated on was "Summertime" by Sam Cooke. Up until that point, I had never heard of it and I really don't know why I hadn't heard it before. What a great song! I downloaded a couple different versions from iTunes. It's more in the vein of a jazz lullaby. My favorite line from it is:

One of these mornings, you're gonna rise up singing
You're gonna spread your wings and take the sky

Just before my camera shut down, Bryan was able to capture a bit of it on video. The sound quality is horrible, but you get the idea and you can hear how obviously talented Uwe is.


video

Woodstock


It's been a long time, I know since this blog has seen any action, but I'm about to update you on some of the things I've been up to the last couple of months...
As I'm sure you know, this year was the 40th anniversary of the Woodstock festival.
On the same anniversary weekend in August, there was a celebration of it here. I got to be apart of the festivities.









My friend, Luzian, accompanied me on the drums and we had a grand time playing. I ended up doing a cover of Janis Joplin's "Piece of My Heart"...not nearly as good as the original, of course, but A LOT of fun to play and have the crowd singing along.
There were a lot of other great bands and musicians that played and what made it even more enjoyable was how much variety and diversity there was!








And, of course, there was some dancing...












....and great food!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Luzern and David Gray (a lovely combination)




A couple weeks ago, I went to Luzern to go see David Gray at the Blue Balls Music Festival. (yes, that's really the name of the festival...no, I don't know why it's called that) Actually, I should specify that I went to Luzern twice in one week because I somehow had mixed up the dates wrong and didn't even bother to check the tickets when we left the first time around. (sigh) I'm hoping that that was my major blonde moment for the year. But Luzern is absolutely lovely and we made the most of both trips. :) Here are some pics:






















You can always count on seeing a plethora of swans there.
It actually made me think of the "Ugly Duckling" story and I had the sudden urge to go and re-read the story.










We saw a very interesting photography exhibit by Olaf Heinie. He's a really great photographer and I found myself taking a lot of time looking at each picture. He's that kind of photographer that captures your interest.









This was one of my favorite ones. I love the feeling of it and also the depth of field.









This is the MTV VIP lounge.....not so VIP...it seemed pretty pretentious. We stuck around long enough to satisfy our curiousity...(which took about 3 minutes) and then left.




I was ecstactic to see David Gray in concert again and so was the rest of the sold out crowd. He sang some of my favorites "Flame Turns Blue" and "This Year's Love" as well as some new songs from is forthcoming album 'Draw the Line'. The new record comes out next month and I can't wait to get it!


As you can see, there were a lot of people at the festival.










I love this night shot.