From the category archives:

BourlanDiaries

Shucking CDs

January 28, 2012

I don’t know whether it’s the right verb, but “shucking” seems like the right word. I shucked corn for my mom as a boy, and as an adult, so the notion of taking the good part out of something and throwing away the undesirable part is called “shucking.” In our new home, I considered having […]

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1971 all over

December 13, 2011

Alan and Neika stopped over for dinner and a visit yesterday. Alan Tower is one of my long-time friends who I have known since 1971. I may have been instrumental in lighting his enthusiasm for playing the guitar, or some teaching here and there, but that was a long time ago. He has now blossomed […]

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Loving change

November 24, 2011

Moving to a new city has helped me rekindle my love for change. It is the path of least resistance to stay in one place your whole life, if you can. But knocking yourself out of that comfort zone can be temporarily traumatic, but ultimately invigorating. I’ve had to find a new grocery store, a […]

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Our party

October 30, 2011

Yesterday we had a Halloween party. From 3-7 was for families with children, and after 7 was adults only. It was a gas having a backyard full of little kids, mostly under 4. I realized that parents  appreciate these kinds of gathering of the clan so that their children can meet each other and play. […]

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Goodbye, my old Dove

October 19, 2011

Today, I traded in my 1970 Gibson Dove guitar for a Taylor 12-string. I bought this guitar in high school from whatever part time jobs and band gigs I had. That is a LONG time ago, 1970. And yes, I feel a bit guilty saying farewell to my old friend. Elvis had a Dove. Gram […]

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My new favorite gin

September 2, 2011

Gin is still my favorite spirit. Dorothy Parker reportedly said I like to have a martini Two at the very most After three I’m under the table After four I’m under the host. These days, one is sufficient and whereas I used to prefer my martinis violently shaken, I now have a mega ice cube […]

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What is the beguine rhythm?

August 27, 2011

I’m orchestrating a piece for guitar and orchestra with music by Kenny Burrell for a November concert. I have learned all kinds of new juicy suspensions common in jazz, and less so in classical traditions. One of the cornerstones of western harmony is resolving leading tones [do re mi fa so la TI has to […]

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Almost stable

August 22, 2011

As I promised you, my blogging has taken a back seat to the reality of moving from a large house in LA to a slightly smaller home in Los Altos. At long last, I feel almost stable. Moving to a new city is a traumatic experience. I haven’t called anyone or spoken with anyone except […]

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A new city for RB

July 31, 2011

My husband and I have moved to Los Altos, California. After months of paring down and packing, I spent seven days packing and preparing for the movers who came last Wednesday, Thursday and Friday and will haul our stuff up to our new home this Friday. I was surprised that I am still so strong […]

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I had a cathartic experience recently. I have been asked to write a piece for a legendary colleague, famous in the jazz world. I decided to wrap an orchestra around one of his jazz tunes. As I began the process, I had a rude awakening: you are NOT a jazz arranger, Roger. Wow. Not that […]

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