Half way through 2021

I can't even begin to touch on all the things that have gone on since I last posted here. We all know about 2020 and how the whole world has been affected and continues to deal with fallout from what I'll call "the shift". I generally feel positive about the future and the idea of leaving behind what doesn't work. It's time for new ways of thinking about how we want to proceed and I am down with that.

I moved to the desert full time in 2017. I still love it and am getting deeper into what it means to live daily in this harsh but beautiful environment. I still have my day job but in the turmoil of last year I came to the realization that I can finally "retire" from the daily grind. I'm working part time but will slowly wind down the schedule. In the meantime, I have a wonderful studio space that I'm preparing for teaching. So many plans had to be postponed last year but I continue to maintain my course. I'm amazed that I've reached the age where I can contemplate such things and have the time to finally pursue my dream full time. Sometimes I wish I was a little younger and less achy but then I realize I'm lucky to have pretty good health, aspirations and the drive, be it somewhat slower.

Summer of 2019

The year is half over and I’m making progress. I’ve been living in the desert for a couple of years and I’m still settling in and unpacking. Work is being done on the house and I’m working a full time job but I have found a studio space to do glass work and I’m getting my jewelry shack set up at home. I’ve grown impatient in this last year as I am ready to do my real work again. It feels good to be making beads, upgrading and updating my bead lines and just playing in the torch. I’m getting back my art show legs. I’ve done a couple of shows up in Idyllwild this summer with 2 more to go next month. I got back in the studio briefly to record some cello tracks with Carla Olson this summer. I’m looking forward to hearing the finished project. Things are taking shape and while I’d like it to happen faster I am happy that things are happening at all. Added to the mix, some health issues to deal with that aren’t too serious now but if I don’t get them under control they will really affect my quality of life as I age.

Joyce Rooks version. 9.0

Summer Update

I recently returned from a trip to Boston to visit the fabulous Kate McKinnon. I hadn’t been to the east coast since early 2002 when I went on a tour of the eastern seaboard with David J’s Cabaret Oscuro. That was post 9-11 and there was a lot of tension in the air, much like now but without quite as much meanness. It was such a treat to be able to relax and explore whenever and however I wanted. The weather was lovely and so were the sights. Since I started working a “day job” 7 years ago my creative life has taken a dive and it is starting to make me feel a little untethered. It doesn’t help that we moved from our home near the beach to the desert which, I love BTW. It’s just that picking up and moving 18 years of my life was something that I don’t want to do again anytime soon and when I do, I hope my load is a little lighter.

The move required packing up my studio of glass, ceramic tools and supplies along with musical instruments and equipment. I also meant unloading a large portion of my record collection which we’ve been moving for the past 40 years in order to raise some cash. There was some great stuff sold but still a lot of good stuff left. The turntable has been getting a lot of use. Meanwhile, all of these changes have left me without access to some of my favorite toys. Thankfully my cello is nearby but she has been temperamental since moving to the dry zone. A humidifier is in the case at all times so she still sounds good and plays well. I dabble with beads, yarn, a little sewing here and there and cooking but I really miss the torch and my kilns. So many things that I want to do and try. One of my missions these days is to release all of the music I’ve ever made into the world. This mission was made even more urgent after I got home from Boston. I had taken my laptop with me which contained music software and my music files. Just before I left for the airport, I powered off the computer for flight as I usually do. When I returned home and powered on again, the computer would not boot up. I spent the next 4 days trying to restore the hard disc to no avail. At that point the reality hit that I had possibly lost everything, music, photos, business records, etc… I started to panic and then got really sad. What an idiot for not backing up!

Finally, an appointment at the Apple store. I left my computer for the afternoon while they attempted to revive my 2011 MacBook Pro. While they were able to revive the disc, most of my data was gone. It seems that there was a software upgrade happening at the time I shut down the computer (High Sierra) so when I started up again the disc was locked in a kind of limbo cycle. The disc had to be erased and the operating system re-installed. Luckily enough I had backed up my desktop to the cloud and I have been piecing together my data. The worst part is that my old Abelton and Reason softwares were eliminated along with all their pertinent files. I won’t be able to reload them because they are older versions that won’t work in the new OS. Looks like I’ll have to upgrade my music softs at some point, probably when I get a new computer. For now I am compiling audio files of anything that I have made in the past 15 years. I will probably upload everything to a music service and leave it at that so I can move forward with new music. I will also be sure to back up and never make that stupid mistake again. Wish me luck as I scrape together data files.


New site on the way…

Unbeknownst to me my previous website was disabled and seems to have dissolved into cyber dust. It’s partly my fault as I haven’t maintained or visited my own site in many months. I have been in the midst of a major move that has dragged on for months along with my working a full time job. In 2018 I hope to change all of this as I present a new direction for myself and all the things I do.