Sunday, September 11, 2005

Happy Birthday Mickey!!!

That's right, another birthday. In addition to remembering the somber events of September 11, 2001, on a happier note we can celebrate the 62nd birthday of one of the most influential, innovative and creative percussionists of our time.

Mickey has always been a personal favorite of mine. All you have to do is just watch him during a show, and you know that there's no other place on the planet he'd rather be. Sometimes, he has this devilish grin on his face, challenging his brother-in-drums Bill to raise it to another level. Sometimes, he has a sort of zoned out look where it's almost he's like on another plane of existence than the rest of us.

Several years back, I saw something on TV about his work with the Smithsonian's American Folk Life Center, where he was working to digitize the most endangered recordings in the Center's collections. He's also been lobbying on The Hill for funding for this program. Truly a noble cause.

Here's a great interview from 2003 that I found that pretty much covers his whole career. Check it out and wish Mickey a happy 62nd!


At 8:26 PM, Blogger Mark said...

What a fucked-up day to have a birthday. I remember reading an article after the first anniversary of 9/11 about some people born on that day and the difficulty they have now showing any public display of joy on that day. Understandable, but at the same time life does go on. We can move forward without forgetting to look back once in a while, I think.

I wish I could figure out a way to get the "Apocalypse Now" sessions on CD so I could send you a copy. It's on vinyl. Any suggestions???

At 8:46 PM, Anonymous Helen said...

I met Mickey at a Planet Drum CD signing in Manhattan. I had naturally purchased the CD and he signed it but I spoke with him about his work with the San Quentin Choir.I absolutely love that CD. He was very nice and extremely humble. He is a great musician and a wonderful humanitarian.
That same year I met Bob when he was coming off his bus for a Ratdog show! Well, I really didn't meet him - more like stumbled upon him! I remember he said "hey". I was like a star struck teen. All I could do was say "hey" back!

At 10:27 PM, Blogger B said...

mickey is an amazing musician
his improv and passion has changed us all, and his impact continues to linger with musicians and composers alike. peace ben.

9/11 - never forget.

At 9:41 PM, Blogger Ben said...

Mark - Transfer vinyl to CD huh? I'd like to find out how to easily do that myself!

Helen - How cool! I think 'hey' would be about all I could probably muster too if I ever had the honor to meet any of them.

Ben - Well said.

At 7:03 PM, Blogger Mark said...

Answers that question. If I ever see it, I'll grab it and send iot to you for Hannukah!


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