Big Kite Redux: Photos from Below

This is a quick follow-up on the six-foot-tall kite featured in the prior post. Several readers wanted to see the kite itself, but we didn’t take any photos of (as opposed to from) it. Today, however, I discovered that my son Liam had taken a 10-second video of it on his...

spacer

Play in Action: Kite Experiment at Lane’s Island

This is the fifth post in my creativity series and the last devoted to Dr. Stuart Brown’s ideas on the subject of play. This week, it’s a personal tale of play, with a video to illustrate it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Te0kfivkFVY   Like too many people my age, I forget to play. Certainly,...

spacer

Murder, Risk, and Creativity

This is my fourth post about creativity and its origins in play, as Dr. Stuart Brown  presents the concept in his book Play (Avery Press, 2009). Ironically, Brown’s interest in play derived from research into Charles Whitman’s killing of 14 people at the University of Texas, Austin, in 1966,...

spacer

Creativity III: Mind, Hand, Mud, and Sticks

In my last post, I discussed creativity in terms of the theories of play promoted by Dr. Stuart Brown. If his TED talk “hit” numbers mean anything, I’m not the only one with whom his thinking has resonated. Reviewing my own lifetime’s moments of enjoyment and creativity, I noted...

spacer

Creativity II: Rats and Einstein

This is my second post about creativity, focusing on Stuart Brown’s study of play and its role in neurocognitive development, inventive and generative states of mind, and mental health. Albert Einstein, understandably, had lots to say about creativity. His summary of play’s role in generative, innovative thinking: “Creativity is intelligence...

spacer

Creativity Theory I: Stuart Brown and Play

I’m going to digress from my series on “Meetings With Remarkable People” even though I have not yet written about some of those who most influenced me. Portraying them is an intimidating task, so I thought I’d approach them through a quality that they had in common and in...

spacer

John Fahey III: The Great San Francisco Concert Party

This is my third post about the American finger-style guitarist John Fahey, one of a series I’ve titled Meetings With Remarkable People. After our show at the Great American Music Hall, Fahey was transcendentally drunk, but he managed to make it to the party at my brother Nick’s place...

spacer

John Fahey II: A Man on the Edge

Looking at YouTube videos of John Fahey in concert recently, I recalled vividly the technique I once so admired. Plant your right hand little finger on the pick-guard; pick away with the thumb and two fingers, get that alternating bass thumping beneath your treble melodies. His left hand had little agility,...

spacer

John Fahey: Meetings with Blind Joe Death

Every young person needs a madman, a Loki, a Coyote, a misfit to look up to, and John Fahey filled that role for me. Long before I met him and performed with him, I knew from his writings and recordings that he must be a remarkable person. But he was one...

spacer

Moondog IV: Life Turns

After seven years of studying classical guitar, I was moving toward what eventually became known as “American fingerstyle.” The intricate solos I wrote incorporated elements of whatever I’d listened to and loved: English and American folk, pop, jazz, blues, ragtime, Indian music, and Western classical and Baroque. I bought a...

spacer