MonthNovember 2012

Ian Anderson with Jethro Tull concert in Oslo Norway

Ian Anderson Jethro Tull in Oslo 2012 #CAttending the Ian Anderson concert with his band Jethro Tull playing Aqualung, Living in the Past and of course Thick as a Brick, was a sensational nostalgic music adventure to me. I had the pleasure once before, 40 years ago and my very first concert ever. I was only 18 and for a country boy who just moved to the big capital Oslo, it was an almost indescribable adventure. People where drinking beer and there was an odd sweet fragrance in the air – they were screaming and clapping hands: I was overwhelmed *LoL*.
On the stage there was Jethro Tull from England leading by a long haired, tartan caped maniacal flute player named Ian Anderson: The concert is still reckoned as one of the great rock performances of the 70s. Most of the songs were in the album “Aqualung” released two months later. The year after, he made the album “Thick as a Brick” and of course it went through my head at this adventurous concert – this time together with my dear wife DianeCA. Our tickets were a gift from my friends at the “Boys Only” party when I turned 60 – some weeks ago. I gladly share our experience with you – this time with some collages of the photos – the light conditions where difficult, so I hope you understand:
Ian Anderson Jethro Tull in Oslo 2012 #A

Actually it was not Jethro Tull, only Jethro Tull’s Ian Anderson on the posters this evening. Earlier this year it was 40 years since “Thick as a Brick” and with that in mind “Thick as a Brick 2” was made as a follow up album- however this time with Ian Anderson only on the cover.
Ian Anderson Jethro Tull in Oslo 2012 #B

It was the same band composition which Jethro Tull is known for: Guitar, bass, keyboards and drums – and in addition the boss’ with his special small guitar and his trademark: the Transverse flute. Besides, there was an extra vocalist, Ryan O’Donnell who also performed as an actor and mime artist – singing in a similar style and balancing out the more rusty voice of the boss.

The original work was performed as it was originally released on LP record – in two consecutive sessions. “Thick as a Brick” was originally featured a mixture of a prog-album and a rock opera. The so-called story – about childhood to Gerald Bostock was admittedly very in the background. In return here all the classic progressive elements with their frequent theme and tempo changes. It is not classic pop songs, but rather a coherent symphonic works. This could probably also be part of the reason that the material has been so seldom performed. The music was remarkable complex and unique in a style never copied through all these years.

The second half of the concert consisted of the raw material anno 2012. It continues the story of Gerald Bostock with a wide range of stories about what happened after adolescence. Unlike the first part of this disc consists of simple songs with a kind of cohesive story and not a coherent work. The material is also performed by this 65-year-old’s voice, and worked perfectly as successor to the first part of the concert.

And by “Locomotive Breath” as an encore, it was also a rehearsal with one of the classic songs from “Aqualung“. Although Ian Anderson doesn’t stand as long on one foot when he plays his flute solos, he is full of energy and the same enthusiasm and artistic aura which he had back in the 70s. A truly magical evening and a trip back memory lane all rolled into one.

7 years of blogging at RennyBA’s Terella

RennyBA celebrating 60 years with a look backHappy blogaversary to Terella.no! As many of you may remember from previous years, my adventure with blogging started out as an experiment. I was lecturing a class in “Technology Business and the Society” at the Norwegian School of Management and among the topics was a new phenomenon; Blogging. Considering myself a network evangelist, the concept fascinated me and I decided to try starting my own blog. After a short time I was addicted as it seems blogging filled several needs in my personal interests. It filled my need to be social and meet new people, it fulfilled my interest in networking, my passion for technology, and last but not least it enhanced my enthusiasm for photography providing a place to share my interests with people from all around the world.

Blogging connecting people:
Oslo Blog Gathering Logo 365-400Over the years I have experienced many new and interesting things because of my blog. I have met new people who over the years have become good friends to me. I now have friends all over the world, and have both visited other bloggers and had many visitors in my homeland because of our connection through blogging.
Oslo Blog Gathering in 2010 is a good example of how blogging has brought myself and others together. Not only did I get the opportunity to meet many of my readers face to face, but many of those who started reading my blog have become friends with each other have built new friendships and new networks out from people they met in Oslo.

Living the good life through blogging:
In recent years living a good life – or as the Italians say “La Dolce Vita” has become more and more important to me! When I came down with Parkinson’s disease a few years ago I had to learn to slow down and give more focus to enjoying life. I quickly experienced that blogging also enhanced my personal enjoyment and quality time with my wife DianeCA. Diane shares my interest in photography and social media, and together our quality time together grows when we share it with others.
7 years of blogging at RennyBA’s Terella #B
We both enjoy photo hunting and trying to capture the magic of the day, the season or the moment. We often enjoy what we are doing that much more while we are imprinting a memory that we will later share with others. We have also traveled around Europe over the last few years and met up with some of our blogging friends. Almost anywhere we wish to travel we already know someone we can contact in that land.

Expanding to other social media – a bonus not a replacement:
In the past couple of years some of the time I used to spend blogging has gone over to new forms for Social Media such as Twitter, Google+, Facebook, LinkedIn etc. I don’t see these things so much as a competition to my blog as an enhancement. I use them to keep in daily contact with friends from the blogsphere – and while I may blog less often than I did in the beginning, I like to keep my theme – Norway and the Nordic countries; our culture, traditions and habits while keeping the quality of my posts at a high level. I feel it is more important that the reader learn something interesting from my posts then that they follow my daily movements.

RennyBA celebrating 60 years with a look back

RennyBA celebrating 60 years with a look backTurning 60 years of age gives cause for summary and reflection. A lot has happened in the world since I was born in 1952 – in the last century, even the last millennium! Growing up in a small town near the countryside without electronic toys, digital media or Internet, gave me a childhood very different from todays. It’s easy to idealize the good old days – I’ll try not to go into that trap – but it has given me a foundation which has influenced me in a way I still appreciate today:
I can never remember being bored even if we didn’t have any video games, amusement parks or youth clubs. I guess it has to do with the fact that we were our own entertainers and the woods, the forest or the mountains were our inspirational playgrounds. It’s easy to make a miniature farm with sticks and pinecones you know :-) Turning your younger sisters baby carriage into a box car was great fun too – not to mention all sport activities like football as well as skating, skiing and alpine sports. Hiking and fishing were great fun, especially when we grilled the catch of the day on the fire afterwards – these were the best weekend activities I can remember.
I would have loved to document all this in photos, but it was not that usual to have around in my childhood. However, thanks to my mother, I have an album where she has collected photos taken in my younger years. I do hope you’ll get an idea of what I am trying to share:
RennyBA celebrating 60 years with a look back RennyBA celebrating 60 years with a look back

RennyBA as a social media enthusiast:
We’ve had big changes in all areas since I was born – especially in science and technology. I mean, I do remember when we had our first telephone installed in our house – and the manual operator. Today in nearly every corner of the world, one cannot enter a café or walk down the street without seeing someone talking, texting, or surfing the Internet on their cell phones, laptops or tablet PC. IT has become ubiquitous and is changing every aspect of how people live their lives.
Recent advances in our ability to communicate and process information in digital form – a series of developments sometimes described as an “IT revolution” – are reshaping the economies, the societies and daily lives of many people – including me. Just take a look at where to find me on the net in the box above :-)

My dear wife’s party surprise:
RennyBA celebrating 60 years with a look backWe met on the net almost 15 years ago – she lived in the US and came over 13 years ago. We might be early adapters in using IT to find each other, but think of it: not even a psychic or a magical fairytale could think up a love story like that 60 years ago!
Today she’s throwing a birthday party for me: We have invited a few of my best friends to a “Boys only” party and she even prepared the food (my favorite): Rakfisk (fermented fish) for a starter, Smalahove (Head of Lamb) as the main dish and caramel pudding for dessert. We are in the middle of the party when this is posted – having the greatest time, enjoying our company and going down memory lane with good old memories from the past, almost 60 years. I’m sure I feel the same as I do when writing this: I must be the luckiest man in the world – so Happy Birthday to me and many, many years to come :-)