Thursday, August 30, 2012

AnglicanTV: Interview with Archbishop Duncan

Insightful interview from Kevin Kallsen and AnglicanTV with the Archbishop of the Anglican Church in North America Bob Duncan focuses on the crisis in the Anglican Mission in America (AMiA) and its affect nationally and on the Anglican Communion.

Today at the Cafe: Early Roman Kings

Here's another track off of Dylan's new album, Tempest, called Early Roman Kings:

There is also an official music video up for Duquesne Whistle here. Doing some thinking about it - it's filled with, well, with stuff. It does take a Mafiaesque turn at one point, but didn't find it "shocking" as Rolling Stone wrote.  Beyond Here Lies Nothin' - now that was rather shocking.  This one is not so much Goodfellas either as it somehow brings the Cohen Brothers (and their version of humor) to mind.

Dylan does love his carnivals and he's got his posse with him in this video.  Last time I saw him traveling with such a posse was in his film, Masked & Anonymous (though he had an interesting array in Must be Santa too). There he had John Paul II and Abraham Lincoln in tow. This time it looks like Gene Simmons and Lada Gaga, along with a guy in white t-shirt and cross who could pass for your local Vineyard pastor, the Karate Kid no less, and a dog-tag wearing Harry Potter look-alike who must have left his glasses his home.  They all look like they are looking for a fight but walk right over it.  Juxtaposition must be a favorite past-time.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Duquesne Whistle: First song from Tempest makes its debut

NPR has the scoop:

"Duquesne Whistle," begins in the middle of a scene, like the fade-in in a classic Western. It's the first song we get to hear from Bob Dylan's Tempest, the album he will release on September 11, 50 years and six months after the commencement of his recoding career.
The music starts faintly, as if in a vintage pleasure palace, with the band — the stalwarts who've played with Dylan for a while and join him on the Never-Ending Tour — playing rock and roll ragtime off in the corner. The electric guitars sound almost like clarinets. Everybody's swinging! But what's that in the distance? Dylan himself unleashes the rubbery guitar chord change that repeats for the rest of the song, sounding just like a locomotive blast. Is he hopping that thing? Is somebody he loves on it? Both are possible. 
"Listen to that Duquesne whistle blowing," Dylan importunes, the burr in his voice recalling none so much as Louis Armstrong. "Blowing like it's gonna sweep my world away." The verses, co-written with old friend Robert Hunter, are typically mysterious and playful. This could be the same train Dylan took with The Band in "Lo + Behold!": as in that song from The Basement Tapes, something strange, raucous and scary is happening. And like that older iron horse, this one runs through Pittsburgh and seems to be carrying a very attractive lady. Maybe it's on the rails to heartbreak or disaster, or a new industrial age. Or maybe the song's just a sly tribute to Earl "Fatha" Hines, the jazz great whose stride piano would have fit perfectly in this arrangement, and who was born in Duquesne in 1903. 
Let the Dylanologists figure out what the song's "real" story may be. The real real story unfolds through its delicious rhythms and in that unshakeable whistle — and the loquacious vivaciousness of Dylan's voice. He and his crew really get the floorboards rocking. We still need saloon songs like this one.

Read it all here.

Agree about the Louis Armstrong comment.  After Dylan did his radio show it is as if he's reached back to his own original roots in music, roots like Robert Johnson.  If someone wants to try to "get" Dylan, it seems to me the road runs through Robert Johnson.

Listen to Duquesne Whistle here or here.

Duquesne Whistle
Listen to that Duquesne whistle blowing
Blowing like it's gonna sweep my world away
I wanna stop at Carmangale and keep on going
That Duquesne train gon' rock me night and day

You say I'm a gambler, you say I'm a pimp
But I ain't neither one
Listen to that Duquesne whistle blowing
Sounding like it's on a final run

Listen to that Duquesne whistle blowing
Blowing like she never blowed before
Little light blinking, red light glowing
Blowing like she's at my chamber door

You smiling through the fence at me
Just like you always smiled before
Listen to that Duquesne whistle blowing
Blowing like she ain't gon' blow no more

Can't you hear that Duquesne whistle blowing?
Blowing like the sky's gonna blow apart
You're the only thing alive that keeps me going
You're like a time bomb in my heart

I can hear a sweet voice steadily calling
Must be the mother of our Lord
Listen to that Duquesne whistle blowing
Blowing like my woman's on board

Listen to that Duquesne whistle blowing
Blowing like it's gon' blow my blues away
You old rascal, I know exactly where you're going
I'll lead you there myself at the break of day

I wake up every morning with that woman in my bed
Everybody telling me she's gone to my head
Listen to that Duquesne whistle blowing
Blowing like it's gonna kill me dead

Can't you hear that Duquesne whistle blowing?
Blowing through another no good town
The lights on my lady's land are glowing
I wonder if they'll know me next time 'round

I wonder if that old oak tree's still standing
That old oak tree, the one we used to climb
Listen to that Duquesne whistle blowing
Blowing like she's blowing right on time

Bob Dylan 2012

Tonight at the Cafe: Friends

Saturday, August 25, 2012

LIVE: Consecration of a Bishop

Watch live the consecration of the Bishop of the Carolinas for the Anglican Church in North America, Steve Wood at St. Andrew's Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina:

Watch live streaming video from anglicantv at

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Profile on Bishop-elect Steve Wood

The Charleston Post and Courier has done a profile of St. Andrew's Mt. Pleasant rector and bishop-elect of the ACNA Diocese of the Carolinas Steve Wood.  His consecration is set for this Saturday, August 25, 2012.

From here:

Steve Wood
The Rev. Steve Wood, rector of St. Andrew’s Church in Mount Pleasant, has for years overseen one of the Lowcountry’s biggest church success stories. The parish has grown to a membership of 3,150 and, in recent years, started churches in Goose Creek and downtown Charleston.

In 2006, Wood was one of three candidates for bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina. (The others were the Rev. Canon Ellis Brust, chief operating officer of the American Anglican Council, and the Rev. Mark Lawrence, who earned the position.) 
Six years later, much has changed in local Anglican circles, and Wood now finds himself at the forefront of a new religious enterprise. On Saturday, he will be consecrated the first bishop of the Diocese of the Carolinas within the Anglican Church in North America. 
The occasion prompted The Post and Courier to ask Wood a few questions about his new role, his church and his parish life. 
Q: The newly formed Diocese of the Carolinas, part of the Anglican Church in North America (itself a fairly new church body), will require careful stewardship and shepherding. Describe your role as bishop and the particular challenges and opportunities you face. 
A: The responsibilities of a bishop are fairly clearly spelled out in both Scripture and in our Prayer Book. The bishop is meant to proclaim the Word of God; guard the faith, unity and discipline of the whole Church; and to act in Christ’s name for the reconciliation of the world and the building up the of Church. A fairly sobering charge. I’d welcome your prayers! 
With regard to challenges and opportunities, I think that navigating growth is both the greatest challenge and opportunity before our new diocese at this time. Just this past week, six faith communities contacted me wanting to know how they might join the Diocese of the Carolinas. That’s been fairly typical of the summer; there’s quite a bit of enthusiasm and interest in what we’re doing. 
The other significant challenge is simply the geographical size of the diocese. We cover both North and South Carolina and have churches spread across the length and breadth of the Carolinas. We’ve spent the past 18 months developing a strong network of relationships and I hope that those relationships continue to both deepen and develop as our diocese matures and grows. 
Q: You lead one of the Lowcountry’s most dynamic churches, St. Andrew’s-Mount Pleasant. How will you balance your duties as bishop with those as parish priest? What do your expanded responsibilities mean for your congregation? 
A: One of the unknowns is what exactly this will look like. I certainly have ideas about how I’ll spend my time. I’ve talked about those ideas with the Vestry of St. Andrew’s and the Steering Committee of the diocese and we’re all on the same page. 
Practically, we’ve developed very good leadership communities at both St. Andrew’s and in the diocese. And I have a high value for shared leadership. I expect that there will be new opportunities for folks to step into new responsibilities and new ministries.
As for St. Andrew’s, you know, this is an amazing congregation. They’ve been so generous with the spiritual and temporal treasure that the Lord has given them. Over the years we’ve had the privilege of planting new churches and coming alongside existing churches to help them develop and redevelop their sense of mission and ministry. It’s been a real joy and source of satisfaction for many in our congregation. I expect we’ll continue those same kinds of things except on a larger scale. 
Q: For those who have not been following recent developments in the Anglican-Episcopalian domain, explain the essential differences between ACNA and the Episcopal Church. Will the two denominations work together on anything? 
A: I’m sure folks have various opinions on this matter. From where I sit, the fundamental issue is a matter of revelation. I mean this: Has God fully, finally and perfectly revealed himself in Christ and is Scripture a faithful and trustworthy record of God’s self-disclosure? I believe he has, and Scripture is. 
Of course, the times, customs and manners of humanity have and will change, and the way in which the Church responds to and engages society and culture must change accordingly. But the message does not change. And this is the message: While we were sinners, God in Christ did not consider our self-professed autonomy an obstacle too great or an offense too grievous and reconciled us to himself. 
The second question is harder. St. Andrew’s and my friends in the ACNA have sought to “play well with others.” But I’d say that the pain, disappointment and estrangement on both sides is fairly substantial right now. There are pockets of cooperation. For example, we have maintained a good relationship with the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina and I am thankful for the fruit borne from our efforts. Additionally, and personally, my mother recently died, and the Episcopal bishop of Ohio kindly granted me permission to both officiate and preach at her funeral held in one of his parishes. At this point in time, though, it is clear that we are not one on serious and core issues, and I don’t know how to resolve those differences. 
Q: You have been one of the area’s more visible and respected church leaders, and now you’re taking on more responsibility. But you’re also a family man with a wife, Jacqui, four sons and interests in sports, music, travel and more. Your life must be a constant balancing act. How do you manage it? 
A: You forgot a daughter-in-law and a grandson! I think, fundamentally, that I’ve discovered a heavenly Father who has reliably and consistently communicated himself to me, thereby shaping and imparting my self-understanding and my self-identity.
I’ve defined, a very long time ago, what success looks like to me. I’ve found satisfaction in Christ and, possessing him, I find satisfaction in life. Also, fortunately, my family enjoys many of the same things, so spending time together, praying, enjoying the outdoors, traveling — all of these things are things we enjoy together and that help us to stay connected. 
At the beginning and end of the day, though, my life, my family’s life, are in the hands of the Lord. I have great confidence in his desire and ability to see us through the sorrows and joys of this life.

Read it all here.

We'll have this on the front page on Saturday, but here is the location for Saturday's consecration brought to us live by Anglican TV:

Watch live streaming video from anglicantv at

Monday, August 13, 2012

What does Bob Dylan know about life?

Bob Dylan has managed his career highly successfully for a half-century.

Like the rest of us, Dylan’s career has seen its share of ups and downs. One of his skills has been finding ways to make comebacks. For instance, as he wrote in his 2004 memoir, “Chronicles, Volume One,” Dylan resuscitated his flagging career in the 1980s by applying a strategic vision to reach out to a new, wide audience of young concertgoers and CD buyers. He set out, in 1988, on what has become known as “The Never-Ending Tour,” in which Dylan plays about 100 dates a year around the world as away to reach out to younger fans.

I studied Dylan’s business intellect as I wrote my new Penguin/Perigee book, published on Aug. 7, “Forget About Today: Bob Dylan’s Genius for (Re)invention, Shunning the Naysayers and Creating a Personal Revolution.”

Here are seven business tips from the Bob Dylan File:

1) Built to Last: You can’t let the newcomers throw you off your game. Just make sure whatever you have created is built to last. Dylan put it well in 1985, when he spoke with filmmaker Cameron Crowe for the liner notes to his “Biograph” collection. Dylan noted: “Muddy Waters didn’t stop playing just because the J. Geils Band started making records.” Somehow, Dylan might as well have told us, Muddy Waters’ legacy will shine brighter than that of the J. Geils Band.

Bob Dylan at the City Lights Bookstore, San Francisco
2)  Have a Strategic Vision — and Stick to It: Dylan proved this point throughout his career. Never was his commitment more evident than on his initial “electric” tours of 1965-66. His devout folk-music fans were infuriated by his revolutionary decision to plug in at the Newport Folk Festival on July 25, 1965. Dylan played his radical rock and roll music all over the world for the next 10 months — and his “fans” booed him at every stop. Publicly, Dylan shrugged it off with a brand of stoic humor. “I did this very crazy thing,” Dylan joked during a press conference in San Francisco in December 1965.

3) Don’t Follow the Crowd: Dylan’s landmark song “Ballad of a Thin Man” might as well be his version of a business plan. He is telling the totally out of touch “Mister Jones” that he has no idea what is happening in the world, right in front of his eyes, because he is stuck in his confining ways. Dylan is telling every aspiring entrepreneur to think for himself or herself and not worry about the naysayers.

4) Never Rest on Your Laurels: Dylan might have been a stellar product manager. He would never stop tinkering with the marketing of his beer or razor blade or automobile. I say this because of the way he has never rested on his laurels, no matter how successful he was. Remember, he had a brilliant career going on as a folkie, but felt compelled to shift to rock and roll. He has never been seduced by financial success. He wants to keep getting better and better.

5) Never Be Discouraged by the Critics: Has anyone made more comebacks than Dylan? He got ripped when he made the much-criticized film “Renaldo & Clara.” Greil Marcus began his Rolling Stone review of Dylan’s album “Self-Portrait” by proclaiming, “What is this sh**?” For his soundtrack of Sam Peckinpah’s western, “Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid,” the critics didn’t lavish praise on him. But Dylan never buckled.

6) Step Out of Your Comfort Zone: Dylan was riding high with his hit single “Like a Rolling Stone,” but he wasn’t content to repeat himself. So, he upped and traveled to alien Nashville to record his next album, “Blonde on Blonde.” It was a revolutionary decision, one of the best of Dylan’s career. As it turned out, he liked Nashville so much that he ended up recording his next three albums there. This is a lesson for product managers: Always keep your wares fresh in the marketplace.

7) Always Innovate: Dylan had a tremendous success with his concerts known as “Tour ’74,” six weeks of stressful one-nighters in mammoth hockey arenas throughout North America. Instead of embarking on another big-arena tour the following year in 1975, he formed the ramshackle Rolling Thunder Revue, a troupe of singers and musicians. This innovation enabled Dylan to enjoy making music in an informal way — and prompted some of the very best concerts of his long career.

Jon Friedman is the author of “Forget About Today: Bob Dylan’s Genius for (Re)invention, Shunning the Naysayers and Creating a Personal Revolution,” published by Penguin/Perigee on Aug. 7, 2012. For more information go here.

Monday, August 06, 2012

What can be done?

Thanks to a good friend for sending this.

"I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh." Ezekiel 36:26