Saturday, December 1, 2007

Blues fans should know about this guy. Here's the first paragraph from the liner notes by Stephen Calt and Woody Mann:

The late Big Bill Broonzy looms as one of the few country blues greats whose career seems as remarkable as his musicianship. He played every professional role available to the untutored black guitarist of his generation: that of the country blues soloist catering to dance audiences, the city bluesman beguiling record-buyers with full-dress lyric themes and a long slow delivery and the folk entertainer trading on familiar standards ear-marked for white listeneing audiences. When he became one of the first bluesmen to appear in formal concert by playing Carnegie Hall in 1939 he was (unlike most of the black musicians who had ever received imter-racial recognition for their work) already a popular musical attraction within his own race. Twenty years later, just before country blues began to interest white listeneners as an art form, Broonzy was dead at the age of 60. It is his early career as a country bluesman that this album...commemorates.

It was a wet day. Not a lot of rain, but enough intermittently all day to keep things wet. So after doing laundry I spent a big part of the day catching up on paperwork, then worked on painting TT parts for a couple of hours.


Sunday, December 2, 2007

Today I took the coil box out of the TT and started getting it in shape. It will need a few parts, but it's not bad. It was a little bent, but I got it straightened out enough for the new lid to fit it. I also got primer on one side of both wheels and one rim. The other rim still needs to be sandblasted. That will wait another day or two until the weather warms up and the wind dies down. Today we had what my uncle Ozzo called "that barbed wire wind" that cuts right through you.


Monday, December 3, 2007

I stayed in town after work today and painted truck parts. This project will take a long time, but if I do a little each day I'll eventually get through it.


Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Today's high was over 50º, a good day for outside work, so I finished sandblasting wheel parts and did the coil box while I was at it. Sandblasting is a simple process, but slow going. If you gather up the sand, sift out the trash, and use it over, it becomes even slower because the sand gets finer each time it's used.


Friday, December 7, 2007

It was another in a string of afternoons devoted to painting wheels and parts. Some items are heavily pitted, so they have to be painted, sanded, painted, sanded, and so on until the pits are filled.


Saturday, December 8, 2007

This return engagement by Los Tigres del Norte, as the cover says, brings you twenty corridos. As usual, the boys bring you catchy tunes well delivered. I've commented before on how Mexican singers usually enunciate clearly so listeners can understand the lyrics. Los Tigres go a step beyond that. Their CD's include a nicely produced little booklet containing all the lyrics. These guys have been around for over twenty years, and they continue to be one of the best norteño groups recording.

I spent a big chunk of the day working on TT parts: painting, sanding, painting, sanding.


Sunday, December 9, 2007

And more of the same today. The felloes on the two rear wheels were rusted enough to be well pitted, so I have to spray on primer, then sand it down, then spray on more and sand it down again, until the pits are filled with primer. Sanding around the spokes is pretty slow going, so it takes over an hour to sand one wheel.


Monday, December 10, 2007

Another afternoon working on wheels, or more precisely, one wheel. Most of my time from 2:30 to 4:30 was spent sanding one wheel and spraying another coat of primer on one side of it. Tomorrow I'll do the other wheel. Winter weather has arrived a couple of weeks before winter. Sleet and freezing rain make for a slow morning commute.


Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Another session this afternoon of wheel sanding and painting.


Wednesday, December 12, 2007

No time for the truck project today. That swell new digital camera I got last spring quit working, so I spent most of the afternoon packing it and shipping it off to Canon factory service in Chicago. The more automatic something is, the more likely it will go haywire.


Thursday, December 13, 2007

No truck today either. It was a case of making firewood while the sun shines. It was a sunny afternoon and warmed up into the forties, so I spent a couple of hours splitting wood. With snow in the forecast for Friday and Saturday it was a good time to build up the supply.


Friday, December 14, 2007

I can't say I'm terribly disappointed. The middle of the state seems to be getting several inches of snow, but it hasn't reached here. Maybe we'll get a little overnight.


Saturday, December 15, 2007

Here's an enjoyable collection for anybody who likes vocal groups of the fifties. Any one of the groups featured here could fill a disc or two with their best work, so the sixteen tracks here are only a taste of the best. The Platters, the Del Vikings, Danny & the Juniors, the Diamonds and other doo wop groups were a major part of the sound track of the fifties.


Monday, December 31, 2007

Oh dear, what shall I do? It seems I've neglected blogging for a couple of weeks. I got sidetracked gettting out Christmas cards and taking care of a few other chores, and time slipped away. I've used up a good part of my weekends working on the Model TT truck restoration project. In fact I spent yesterday driving up to Iola, four counties away, and fetching home a truck bed. Most of the wood will have to be replaced, of course, but the metal is in remarkably good condition. Rather than putting all the details of this project in the blog, I'll set up a special page for it where those who are interested can see some pictures. I don't know if I'll finish the truck during the coming year, but I expect to get pretty far on it. meanwhile, my other resolution is to eat black eyed peas on New Year's Day.