Monday, December 30, 2013

ROMA & Triana's Music Trivia (12.29.13)

Ah, the very end of the year. It's interesting how every year without exception, a seemingly large number of people get to this point and say things like, "Thank God this year is over!".

Really? The whole fucking year was so terrible? All 365 days sucked so badly that you feel the need to offer gratitude to a deity to mark the passage of time? And what is a "year" anyway? Obviously it's the length of time it takes for the Earth to make an orbit of its local star, but this arbitrary "start" and "end" to it is a completely manufactured event. The one thing that our calendar does offer are points to commemorate and reflect on what one has done, where one has gone, and possibly some measuring of planning as to what one will do, where one will go, and so on.

I'm going to let you in on a little secret: I've never had a bad year. Not one of my 44-1/2 years were bad. Oh, I've had terrible things happen to me on particular days, but I've also had great things happen, and for whatever reason you want to give it, I'm a person who feels he has way more great days than bad ones (or at least pretty good ones). Therefore, especially over the course of riding my planet on a full trip around the sun, I've never once looked back over that time and been anything but thankful that I'm still alive, and enjoying myself for the most part.

Yesterday is a good example. It was a lovely Sunday here in Southern California, with temperatures in the low 70s, and sunny as could be. I had not one but two live performances to do in Second Life: a noon show at ROMA, the ancient Rome role-playing sim, and a special evening show for my great friends at Triana's Music Trivia. Speaking of trivia, here's some for you: of the extremely rare occasions that I've had multiple shows in the same day, this year I've twice spent a Sunday performing at both ROMA and TMT (the other time being June 23). Both shows ended up being very cool in different ways, and so I look back on yesterday, as I do with most of 2013 (and most of my life, really) as having been fun and productive.

I've enjoyed every show I've done at ROMA. The reason that I seem to have become their go-to musical performer is pretty clear: my manager, Maali Beck, is a member of their community. Still, I'd like to think that my willingness to a) take the time to learn about the festive events for which I'm hired and b) put on a toga both help in their decision to bring me back there time and time again. Yesterday's show was for their Saturnalia celebration, and we had a decent crowd of ROMA citizens there to have fun and boogie to my tunes. I pulled out a couple of Beatles tunes I hadn't done before, and also did two Joni Mitchell songs that I hadn't performed in over a year.

I'm all in favor of bringing back togas for daily use. Photo by Kat.

Rocking for Saturnalia was cool. I think we need to bring that holiday back too. Photo by Kat.

ROMA set list...
*Eleanor Rigby (Beatles)
This Afternoon (Zak Claxton)
Swing Lo Magellan (Dirty Projectors)
River (Joni Mitchell)
Falling Down (Zak Claxton)
Perfect Day (Lou Reed)
Perfect Girl (Zak Claxton)
Broken Day (Zak Claxton)
*Norwegian Wood (Beatles)
You're Like a Cloud (Zak Claxton)
Furry Sings the Blues (Joni Mitchell)
My Heart (Neil Young)
One (U2)
Tea for the Tillerman (Cat Stevens)

*Indicates the first time I've performed this song in SL.

Thanks to all who supported my Saturnalia rockfest at ROMA!
Melanippe Karas, Zantabraxus Aristocarnas, kkadora, SeverusAlexander, Aurelie Chenaux, Kat Claxton, colbymartin Constantine, reeveskd, Airedale Magic, Roman Chronometrist, Angelia Rees (who helped coordinate and run the show), and my manager Maali Beck!

Triana's Music Trivia
I've told the story so many times, I think anyone reading this blog must know it by heart, but I'll do it again anyway. Back in 2006, Kat and I had found SL, but our interest was somewhat waning. Like many people, we found SL to be interesting to explore and a good creative outlet, but we hadn't really connected with people or events that we liked (and I didn't even know that live music performance in SL was possible at the time). That's when we found Triana's Music Trivia, run by a lady who would quickly become a great friend of ours. For the subsequent seven-plus years, we've rarely missed a single Sunday evening at TMT.

A couple of times a year, Triana will hold a special event where she holds her trivia game, and then I play live music. Usually it's for special occasions, like TMT's anniversary and Triana's rezday in June, or around the holidays. I always put on a show there that's completely different from my typical performances in SL (as in this show's rendition of "Been Caught Stealing" sung in the style of Johnny Cash). This year, after I changed from my toga into a tux, the really special part of the show was having Kat join me on several songs, which the folks there absolutely loved.

Our crazy and fun TMT friends bring out the best in any performance. Photo by Triana.

My woman with her triangle of power. Photo by Triana.

TMT set list...
Norwegian Wood (Beatles)
How Soon Is Now? (The Smiths)
Always Tomorrow (Zak Claxton)
†California Dreaming (The Mamas & The Papas)
†*The Funeral (Band of Horses)
†Better Reasons (They Stole My Crayon)
*I Dreamed a Dream (Les Miserables)
Shine (Zak Claxton)
*Been Caught Stealing (Jane's Addiction)
Ramble On (Led Zeppelin)
Triana (Zak Claxton)
Loser (Beck)

*Indicates the first time I've performed this song in SL.
†Indicates songs I did for the first time with Kat in SL.

Thanks to our fantastic friends at TMT who supported my show. Sunday nights wouldn't be the same without you!
Alchemy Epstein, Nakira Tennen, Xerxes Ninetails, Samantha Poindexter, Diana Renoir, my lovely lady Kat, and our BFF, Triana Caldera!


Angelia Silvia Dacia said...

Zak - ROMA doesn't just love having you because Maali is one of us.... we love having you because your music is awesome, your personality is uplifting, and we always have great fun when you're around. :) We can't wait to have you back again!

Zak Claxton said...

Well, thank you very much, Angelia! It is always a fun place to play, and I do indeed feel like my performances at ROMA are appreciated by all.