...being the observations and navigational extracts
from the ongoing expeditions of San Francisco Piano Pop trio
True Margrit

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Base Camp! Bass Amp! Alive Alive -O!

I was just googling True Margrit ( c'mon, don't you google your band sometimes?) & guess what ? Our song "Electricity" from SEAWORTHY was an example of the "modern waltz" on a Pandora podcast about meter/time signatures/rhythm!
see! we're an example on a Pandora blog!


For you nice readers I shall own up to all of my obsessions-- other than self-googling--in due course. The confession du jour? For years & years now I have loved to read about mountain climbing! Everest?! ( that is, Chomulungma/Sagarmatha!!) K2?? Denali! Nanda Devi! Nanga Parbat! oooh yes. I eat it up with a spoon--or iceaxe...

In fact, a result of this lifelong proclivity our soon-to-be released album, THE JUGGLER's PROGRESS has a whole mountain climbing image/thread. You'll see/hear. I go through phases & indulge other obsessions, but lately, perhaps with the imminent release of the mountainous album, I'm in full throttle with the Himalayan expedition books, the articles on first ascents, and mountain climbing movies. In case you want to check it out, here are both my top five mountain climbing books & top three movies of all time.

Best Mountaineering Books:
5) Kingdom of Adventure-Everest by James Ramsey Ullman. A classic. I love reading about the treks undertaken back in the old days ( before airstrips and choppers) just to get to Base Camp. Neato
4) Annapurna, a Woman's Place by Arlene Blum. A real corker about an all-women's expedition led by the Bay Area's own Arlene Blum in 1978. Both fun and very sad.
3) Annapurna by Maurice Herzog's account of the French expedition's first ascent of Annapurna. Cool & gruesome trekking tales!
2) The Boys of Everest by Clint Willis. A very intense and intensive survey of British mountaineering from the 1960's to 1980 with the rockstar circle of climbers around Sir Chris Bonington as the focal point. Willis is the best writer by far in this genre--he's a poet of glaciers, cols, cwms, and the human psyche
1) Touching the Void by Joe Simpson. Very well written as well-- and it's the craziest most harrowing mindblowing mountain disaster survival tale. Ever.

Best Mountaineering Movies:
3) hmmmm maybe there are only two great ones....but the IMAX Everest movie is pretty good. I liked Blindsight too, but it's more about the plight of blind Tibetan children and the folks trying to help them ( including the blind athlete Erik Weihenmayer) than it is about mountains.
2) The Man Who Skiied Down Everest--I just watched it this week--it's pretty great and it's narrated by HAL 9000 ( well, the guy who played HAL--Douglas Rain). Pretty surreal with gorgeous cinematography. Won the Documentary Academy award in 1975 ( that date might be off--sue me).
1)Touching the Void--AMAZING! Thrilling & riveting & chilling--even though you know the folks involved survived, since they are telling the story--with the help of surprisingly uncheesy re-enactments.

What about terrible mountain climbing movies? OK, here is my list of the three worst of all time:
3) Vertical Limit--I confess, I saw it in the theatre. What are you gonna do. OH, SO STUPID!
2) K2-- I rented it it yesterday. Oh dear.
1) K2--so bad it takes two spots on the list. BAD MOVIE. Ok maybe there aren't enough mountain climbing films! Make some!

Ok. And we'll let you know when we're at Base Camp. We're going for the summit.

Monday, May 25, 2009

True Margrit, False Margrit & Margrit Eichler Ph.D

Did y'all know there are TWO Margrit EIchlers?? Yep! It's true. One is me--Margrit Eichler, songwriter/singer/ pianoplayer & your hostess here on the True Margrit Captain's Log. The other is Margrit Eichler Ph.D-- a Canadian author/ sociologist specializing in gender studies/ feminism at University of Toronto. If you google "Margrit Eichler" you'll in fact get the both of us! This happened recently to a promoter looking for juicy tidbits to add to a blurb about me for a show. The upshot? I was described as a feminist scholar! It was tempting not to correct anyone--it's kinda exhilarating & empowering to be Dr Margrit, but truth is best. If I didn't fess, up I'd be False Margrit, would I not?

For your edification--here's a link with images of both Margrits:

Will the True Margrit please stand up?


We got excellent news!!! The nice folks at BURNSIDE DISTRIBUTION CORP are going to distribute our upcoming album, THE JUGGLER's PROGRESS!!!!!!!!!!!!! Huzzah!

The album is in fact done--we now only have to :
1) master it ( always master your releases, my friends--it's the icing on the audio cake & god knows what a dreary/ tinny/ and or boomy place the world be without the buttery creamy icing of mastering!)
2) send it off to replication
3) plan the Launch Party ( you're invited!)
4) book the October tour
5) tell all y'all all about it!!


PLEASE tell your friends & family! I'm going to the east coast in two weeks for a solo micro-tour:
wed June 10 @ 8pm
Caffe Vivaldi ( no cover!) NIce grand piano!!
32 Jones Street, off Bleecker Street, Near Seventh Ave.

Nearest subway stops:
West 4th Street Station (Take the W 3rd St. Exit) Trains: A,B,C,D,E,F,V
Christopher Street Station Trains: 1,9

Thurs June 11 4-5 pm
WESU ( @Wesleyan University)
I'll be on the radio doing a wee interview live in the studio & sharing some previews of tracks from THE JUGGLER's PROGRESS!!

Friday, June 12 @ 7:30pm $10 suggested donation
Buttonwood Tree (another nice grand piano!!)
605 Main Street, Middletown, Connecticut 860-347-4957

Wed June 17th @ 7pm
Banjo Jim’s ( no cover!)
700 East 9th Street, New York, NY 10009
Taxi: Tell the driver "9th Street and Avenue C"
Subway: 6 Train to Astor Place; N or R Train to 8th Street;
L Train to 14th St and 1st Ave
Bus: 14D to 10th Street and Ave C

I'm going to experiment with some micro-video-blogging--we'll see how that goes!

...more soon my sweets!