New Ears!

I have been doing without my Bone Anchored Hearing Aids for almost eight months. Yesterday we made the long trip to Johns Hopkins to be fitted with the latest Baha 5 sound processors.

My earlier processors worked, but they were far from perfect. The new devices have two microphones and link together to give me a normal range of hearing. It is awesome.

Baltimore sucks. The city smells like poop and the people are mean. This same malaise seems to have leeched into Johns Hopkins as well because the vibe of the place was a far cry from the way it was in 2009.

Back when my father and I were traveling the country filming interviews for The Down Neck Gazette we accidentally wound up in an Indian casino in the middle of nowhere. It was a nice place, but the geezers at the slot machines had their credit cards in the one-armed-bandits. Each had a lanyard with one end attached to the card and the other to their shirts – literally connecting them to the machines. It was creepy because it looked Cronenbergian. As if they were being sucked dry literally and metaphysically by the stupid game.

I saw the same blank but frustrated and vaguely angry faces all over Baltimore, only instead of slot machines, it was cell phones. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

Oh well. Noli nothis permittere te terere.

Right now I am rocking a Spotify playlist I made so my iPad can stream music to my BAHA in blissful REAL stereo – and then the BAHA blasts the sound into my skull!

I spent a long time this morning playing and singing. Now that I can read all around me, making music is a completely new experience. I am so happy I want to run around cheering!

Once I adjust to the new ears I’ll get back to making videos and workshops. Right now I want to go outside and listen to the bluejays argue with the cardinals in my back yard.

Patrick's new BAHA sound processors.

Just This Banjo Is Not A Songbook

Just This Banjo got a nice Amazon review today – and that’s cool, but the reviewer took off a star for an unexpected reason:

I was expecting a few songs to be put in the book in some sort of musical notation. Then I would have given it 5 stars. But a good read.

I’m not complaining. It’s a nice review – but Just This Banjo is neither a songbook or an instruction manual. While there is some discussion on technique and a few song lyrics are tossed into the mix, the narrative arc of the story concerns the development of a folk singer. It is a book about chasing a dream and being lucky enough to have the support of the people you love.

Don’t take my word for it, read yourself! You can access Just This Banjo for free: