New beginnings

Chat and sip. Beret optional.

Moderator: Ginny

Fred
Tengster
Posts: 767
Joined: Sat Jul 05, 2008 1:55 am
Location: NY metro area

New beginnings

Postby Fred » Sun May 19, 2013 9:24 pm

The Forum draws me back in. Probably it's the new site, new CD, new tour. It feels like 2009 again, except I feel like a lifetime has passed since then. Strange.

Reacting to the new site, it's pretty stunning visually, and the new format as a blog is very current. All of the designers did a fantastic job. I gather Vienna played a large personal role in it. Editorially, I was initially a bit taken aback by the prominence of blog entries about Vienna written in the omniscient 3rd person, without by-lines, but it may grow on me. (Maybe by-lines would not be a bad idea.) Checking the old site I see that not only scrapbook entries but news items were written as if first-person by Vienna. If the news items were ever ghosted it wasn't apparent. Right now the homepage blog echoes the news page but I wonder if Vienna might occasionally be inspired to post a scrapbook-like entry in the homepage stream--perhaps an echo of an especially meaty Facebook post such as yesterday's on what she did after graduation. (Hey, there's an idea.) Time will tell.

Now that Vienna is back into music full time for a bit, perhaps her voice will become more dominant in the mix, from such writings or videos. The one VTlog in the blog stream is very much in that vein, and very welcome. I'm remembering how Vienna's written voice on the old sites, added to her recorded music, made me a Warm Stranger long before I met her in person or saw her perform. There are still a few billion people out there, give or take a couple, who need to become Warm Strangers but don't yet know it, and they probably won't all get to shows in this tour, so the site may still serve an important welcoming function.

Reacting to the "interview" blog entry about the new CD, I note how much blunter Vienna is in retrospect about being frustrated/dissatisfied/stale in her music career before grad school than her writings at the time made it seem. During the Inland Territory tour the bulk of her tweets and scrapbook posts were about the joys of making music around the country and in Europe, and gratitude for the life she had, with just the occasional one letting on that it was not always so, or wondering about an alternate future. (I especially think of a scrapbook entry about how hard it was to tour and write songs, from the late summer of '09, that sounded almost heartbreakingly frustrated. Must have been about the time she applied to grad school. Some of us took these things as harbingers and were not surprised when change came.) Of course, the period of greatest frustration Vienna refers to in the interview exactly coincides with my introduction to her as a live performer, which is paradoxical; frustrated or not, she made magic happen on stage repeatedly in 2009 before my eyes.

(This sent me back to review the scrapbook entry from March of '10 about leaving full-time music. The frustration is there if you look for it, but soft-pedaled, with her decision presented much more as a question of doing something she'd wanted to do for a long time. Of course that was true too; it's just a question of emphasis. Maybe she didn't want us to feel at fault for her dissatisfaction at a time when her decision was a shock to some. Of course by now we know that nothing better could have happened for Vienna the musician than to put music on the back burner for a while. Life is often like that.)

Most of the interview is forward looking, however. I'm as excited as anybody about the new music, happy that we've gotten a taste of it through some early demos, and even happier that Vienna has curtailed that more recently. I want most of the packages under the tree to be tightly wrapped on Christmas morning. More than anything, I want Vienna to succeed in, as she says, "rekindling my love affair with music." This time, there will not be time for that love to fade into habit before she has to once again put music aside, and I think that is as it must be. I only see Vienna's horizons expanding, and don't expect to see them narrow to just music again for any extended period. The way forward over the long term for her and for us is exciting nonetheless. We've only scraped the surface of the music paradigm of the future. Nobody knows what it's going to look like ultimately, but the last 3 years have given us hints of what music in a connected century might look like, and for one I'm really optimistic about how well that will fit into the life of a sometime performer with multiple dreams to pursue. I'll be excited to be part of it. But for the next few months we can indulge our nostalgia, and have some live music as we remember it from the oughts (noughts? I never know how that goes), with whatever twists Vienna has waiting.

Looking forward. Really looking forward.

Fred
Ain't praying for miracles, I'm just down on my knees
Listening for the song behind everything I think I know
And everything I think I know is just static on the radio.

cmooreNC
Tengster
Posts: 846
Joined: Wed Oct 13, 2004 9:59 pm
Location: Hermitage, TN

Re: New beginnings

Postby cmooreNC » Mon May 20, 2013 2:57 pm

Good summation about where things stand from a fan's perspective, Fred. I can't say that I disagree with anything you've said.

It will be interesting to see what the future holds, both for her and for us (as fans).

If this tour and 5th album proves to be a "final fling" on the music front, so be it. It will sure be fun while it lasts, though! :D

My wife and I had a nice conversation last week with Tanya Shaffer about keeping The Fourth Messenger alive. Some good thoughts and, at this point, very tentative plans there. Of course at the present they seem somewhat "distant future," but that may be a good thing. Proper germination and growth in the professional theater world is often a slow process.

It will be fascinating to see what springs forth from Vienna on the creative front for the second half of this year. The shows in July should give us a good sampling taste of what's to come.
Chris

Michele
Strange
Posts: 863
Joined: Sun Apr 27, 2003 1:11 am
Location: Exit 47

Re: New beginnings

Postby Michele » Mon May 20, 2013 7:12 pm

Fred wrote:The Forum draws me back in. Probably it's the new site, new CD, new tour. It feels like 2009 again, except I feel like a lifetime has passed since then. Strange.


I think the new album and tour will see the forum a bit more active again. Meantime I'll try to get posting in Other Fine Cuisine - there are a lot of updates for Vienna's past openers and friends which deserve acknowledgement.

Fred wrote:Reacting to the new site, it's pretty stunning visually, and the new format as a blog is very current. All of the designers did a fantastic job. I gather Vienna played a large personal role in it. Editorially, I was initially a bit taken aback by the prominence of blog entries about Vienna written in the omniscient 3rd person, without by-lines, but it may grow on me. (Maybe by-lines would not be a bad idea.) Checking the old site I see that not only scrapbook entries but news items were written as if first-person by Vienna. If the news items were ever ghosted it wasn't apparent. Right now the homepage blog echoes the news page but I wonder if Vienna might occasionally be inspired to post a scrapbook-like entry in the homepage stream--perhaps an echo of an especially meaty Facebook post such as yesterday's on what she did after graduation. (Hey, there's an idea.) Time will tell.


Vienna did a very large amount of work on the site herself, so I found it a bit ironic to hear from both you and another forum member who told me in person the site felt less personal due to the third-person posts. I understand though, because that was my first reaction to the news items too, but then I brushed it off because the bulk of them contained direct quotes anyway. I'm not sure what else should be done at this point - I feel like the content of the newsletters, which Vienna writes herself, have been the source for the news on the site for a few years now anyway. All the personal updates can be found on Facebook. Pretty much any other band I follow does that too, all business on the web page, all frequent updates on social media. But if you guys have other ideas just let us know. It just might be a while - I was pretty amazed Vienna made time at all to work on building the new site.

This isn't the end of the site changes, either - we have more things brewing! Vienna kinda really needs to get that album finished up first, though. :D

Fred
Tengster
Posts: 767
Joined: Sat Jul 05, 2008 1:55 am
Location: NY metro area

Re: New beginnings

Postby Fred » Mon May 20, 2013 8:08 pm

Chris,
I'm not much concerned about Vienna finding a way to fit making music into her life in the long term. If all goes according to plan she'll make a CD she's as proud of as the last one, it will blaze a new artistic trail that she will want to follow up, and she will rediscover what was joyful about being on the road meeting people all over the country and Europe who deeply value what she does. For many it will be their first time seeing her, which could raise the excitement level. This time, she won't have eight years and four repetitious cycles of record-and-tour to wear her down and make her defer her other dreams. This tour will be over almost before it hits its stride, and with any luck she'll go to the business world with nothing but happy memories and a desire to find a way to combine her two lives. I would not be surprised if there is an eclipse of her music-making while she gets established in her new life, but in the longer run I expect she'll figure it out. And even if not, I suspect we're all there for her anyway whatever she does. (It's all good.)
Fred
PS The Fourth Messenger news is welcome. I may yet see it in production. Don't tell me the spoiler. ;)
Ain't praying for miracles, I'm just down on my knees
Listening for the song behind everything I think I know
And everything I think I know is just static on the radio.

Fred
Tengster
Posts: 767
Joined: Sat Jul 05, 2008 1:55 am
Location: NY metro area

Re: New beginnings

Postby Fred » Mon May 20, 2013 8:20 pm

Michele,
I expect that as things heat up Vienna's presence on the site -- her "voice" -- will naturally become the main thing one notices, just in the normal course of things. I agree, revisiting the old sites and comparing to other artists' sites, it's remarkable how personal the tone of Vienna's sites was. Most of the ones you see show little or no evidence of the artist's presence, especially when dealing with well established artists, which is what Vienna is by now. Once Vienna is out of the studio and on the road, documenting the tour will put her front and center. I'm not all that concerned about it. Less by the day. Thanks as always for your part in the process!
Fred
Ain't praying for miracles, I'm just down on my knees
Listening for the song behind everything I think I know
And everything I think I know is just static on the radio.

Fred
Tengster
Posts: 767
Joined: Sat Jul 05, 2008 1:55 am
Location: NY metro area

Re: New beginnings

Postby Fred » Mon May 20, 2013 8:42 pm

Michele,
Please, please, don't take my commentary as criticism. I'm just relating what has made my fan experience amazing in case that provides any insight into what may make the experience just as great for the fan who discovers Vienna's music the day after tomorrow. What has made a difference for me may be quirky and unrepresentative, for all I know. Ultimately Vienna has to be the judge of what works best.
Fred
:D
Ain't praying for miracles, I'm just down on my knees
Listening for the song behind everything I think I know
And everything I think I know is just static on the radio.

Fred
Tengster
Posts: 767
Joined: Sat Jul 05, 2008 1:55 am
Location: NY metro area

Re: New beginnings

Postby Fred » Wed May 22, 2013 5:19 am

Michele wrote:I think the new album and tour will see the forum a bit more active again. Meantime I'll try to get posting in Other Fine Cuisine - there are a lot of updates for Vienna's past openers and friends which deserve acknowledgement.

I've got stuff I could post to Other Fine Cuisine too, like probably over a hundred shows since the last one I posted here, lol. However, they would not all be of interest. What I could to is post on the ones from "family": Ari Hest, Elizabeth and the Catapult, etc. - now including Barnaby Bright. I've got set lists, pictures, a little video. Probably whipping up some interest in Barnaby Bright would not be a terrible idea. I'll see what I can do.
Ain't praying for miracles, I'm just down on my knees
Listening for the song behind everything I think I know
And everything I think I know is just static on the radio.


Return to “The Cafe”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests