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I’m using a working title of my own for this Jimmy Fallon video from last week: “Wilco Being Awesome, Featuring Glenn Kotche and Nels Cline Kicking Ass and Taking Names.”

I listened to Keith Jarrett’s Tokyo ’96 album on the plane today, in honor of having just visited the city. GAAAAAHHHHH… it is so good. Even better than I remember, and I completely wore out that record in college. Every track is so moving. The record is on iTunes so go buy it immediately, and I think the dvd is available on Amazon if you look hard enough.

Taken from the dvd and posted on youtube just days ago is this gem…

You’ll want to watch this asap because I think Keith is pretty vigilant about his stuff not being on youtube. Jack’s playing on this track is a perfect example of a latin feel based on improvisation rather than committing to a particular pattern or rhythm. I’ve noticed that the larger drum world’s more dominant school of thought regarding latin playing is a very strict name and pattern approach, as if you’re not really playing latin unless you execute a cascara “this way” and not “that way”… and under no circumstances can you play a cascara with a rhumba clave… or whatever. PLEASE don’t pay attention to someone who talks that way. Music is not a study in systems or socio-cultural rules. Once again, it’s all about emotions, and Jack’s playing in the above video is DRIPPING with emotion.

I’m sure many of you have already seen the above meme on Facebook or wherever. My friend Aaron just posted an interesting article allegedly providing scientific backing to this meme’s overall point, that Pop music has deteriorated over the past 60 years. It is a common sentiment that modern mainstream music is less “intelligent” or “creative,” and the linked article claims to prove this.

People… this is absurd. EVERY generation thinks their music is superior to the next generation’s music. Is music different now than it was? Yes. Can the differences be qualified and compared/contrasted so that one era emerges as a “winner” in the complex and infinitely subjective world of art? I’ll let you figure out the answer to that one on your own.

I’m saying this because of my current kick regarding the way music affects people’s EMOTIONS. I’m more and more convinced that music’s real currency is its ability to manipulate one’s FEELINGS. Melodies, chords, volume levels… these things contribute to the overall impact of the music, but they are not mathematical formulas for success or failure.

Bottom line: Bieber’s millions of die-hard fans cannot be explained away by simply claiming that they’re idiots. His music AFFECTS them, just like Sinatra’s music has affected me.

As always… hit me with your feedback.

Beautiful smoggy Los Angeles.

Hey blog readers. I really really really mean it when I say that I’m going to be posting much more regularly for the rest of this year as I’m on tour. But… this week… not so much… because the fetching Mrs Goold has been out on the road with us since Tuesday! Hence the photo above. It’s been fun to have her along.

Anyhow, if you’re wanting to keep up with the gigging side of things then be sure to check out my Tumblr page for tour updates and geeky gear stuff. I also recently started a Facebook artist page if that’s more your thing.

But yes… more legit blog posts… SOON…

Those of you that attended the Drumset and the Kingdom gathering a few months back will remember the awesomeness that is Matt Tobias. He gave an unbelievably inspiring and compelling session during the conference, and on top of that was an absolute delight to hang out with.


He recently started his own blog and it is as rad as you think it is. Go read it. Then high-five yourself for having become wiser.

This is a crazy read… a very well written article about an intense subject. Holy cow. Take the 15 min to read it through. Amazing.

A few observations from me:

1. Note the MASSIVE endowment the BSO has (where “has” = “needs”). Talk about government bailout.

2. The psychological aspect of a “perfect performance” is represented well here. Like golf, music is a mental thing. The physical elements of playing drums are very real, but at the end of the day it is a strategy game and head game. Chess rather than football.

3. From where I’m sitting it seems that finding one’s worth and value in a skill or vocation will ultimately always produce the kind of stress and disappointment that is so tangible in this article. Music is amazing and powerful and awesome and I love it, but one should find IDENTITY elsewhere.

Ok… I’ve finally had a chance to sit down and go through some of the photos from last month’s Drumset and the Kingdom event. What a blast that day was! Holy cow. I’m super thankful for and humbled by how many people came out.

Below are a few photos, and you can listen to the opening session introduction from me and Keith here (only 11 min). More audio to come.

Matt Tobias dropping some wisdom

Nate Robinson not faking the funk on a nasty dunk

Bwack being a geek… Instagram style

Me looking less studious than usual because I’m not wearing my emergent church pastor glasses.

I’m in Toronto today and tomorrow. So far it’s underwhelming, but I hear there’s a space needle or something? Obviously the above shot is photo-shopped, but still funny.

I promise serious blog posts are coming soon. PROMISE.

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