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BACK ON THE ROAD

I’m back on the road again – this time to Monterey in my modified 1972 911T/ST. I’m headed for the annual R Gruppe track day and weekend gathering (Treffen). I’ve been to every one of these over the past ten years, so there’s no reason to stop now! I’ll also be photographing along the way – shooting HD video is my latest passion. So inland Oregon, the Redwoods and coastal California will be my subjects over the next two weeks. Continue reading “”

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EARTH DAY

On April 22 1970, Earth Day marked the beginning of the modern environmental movement. Approximately 20 million Americans participated. Thousands of colleges and universities organized protests against the deterioration of the environment. Groups that had been fighting against oil spills, polluting factories and power plants, raw sewage, toxic dumps, pesticides, the loss of wilderness, and the extinction of wildlife suddenly realized they shared common values. Continue reading “”

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NATIONAL RECORD STORE DAY

Today marks the 3rd annual Record Store Day, a national celebration to support independent music shops. Brick and mortar record stores have been a dying breed across America for several years now. The on-line convenience of downloading music from the internet is at least partly responsible. Unfortunately, the community reality of a well run and experienced local record store is being lost in the process.

If you saw the movie “High Fidelity” you know what I’m talking about. In order to celebrate independent record stores across the nation, the Alliance of Independent Media Stores, Coalition Of Independent Music Stores, Music Monitor Network, Newbury Comics, and Value Music Group of Indie Stores have named this Saturday in April as Record Store Day. Continue reading “”

TARGA CALIFORNIA

The 2nd Annual Targa California Rally took place this past week south of Monterey. Over fifty pre-1975 cars (twenty of which were Porsches) drove 1,000 miles over varied terrain during the peak of this spring’s wildflower season. The participants experienced a unique blend of long country roads, sports car museums and automotive companionship over three days traveling at their own pace. Continue reading “”

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EARTHQUAKE!

Yesterday I was sitting in my parked car working on a new title for my book on America when the strangest thing happened. In the middle of Joshua Tree National Park, with absolutely no one else around, my car started moving as though someone was bouncing up and down on the rear bumper. I jumped out of the car only to discover a hummingbird off to my left side and nothing else. Discovering a new title was a revelation, but I did not think it would be followed by a 7.2 magnitude earthquake. Continue reading “”

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PALM SPRINGS ROAD TRIP

The Palm Springs Photo Festival has been fantastic. Thanks to all the reviewers and seminar presenters for a very informative week! Special thanks go out to Russell Hart, Christopher Robinson, Tony Bannon, Mary Virginia Swanson, Jane Brown and Michelle Dunn Marsh. Next stop on my road trip is LA for a car collection photo shoot, then Tucson to see “Swanee”, then back to LA for the Targa California Rally. Continue reading “”

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R.I.P. JIM MARSHALL

A witness to ’60’s rock history and one of the greatest Leica M photojournalists, Jim Marshall passed away in New York City yesterday. He was 74. His photographs of Jimi Hendrix at Monterey, Bob Dylan, The Rolling Stones, Janis Joplin, and The Beatles’ last concert in San Francisco in 1966 are legendary. He was well known for capturing decisive musical moments and was the chief photographer at the original Woodstock festival. A strong personality with a solid business sense and great stories to tell, his is a dying breed in still photography. He may well be the end of an era. Continue reading “”

A LIFE IN PHOTOGRAPHY

I feel very fortunate to have had the opportunity to live a life that has allowed me to pursue my passion. Photography, words and music are an integral part of my core being. Reinventing myself within these disciplines as my life unfolds is where I am today. No doubt, times like these are challenging and they will probably continue to be so. However, I feel it’s very important that we identify those paths that will work best for each of us in the coming years ahead. Honoring the process that defines our lives is integral to our future success. Continue reading “”

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DEJA VU

It might seem like yesterday, but Déjà Vu was released 40 years ago this week. It topped the US Billboard pop album chart for one week and generated three Top 40 singles: “Teach Your Children,” “Our House,” and “Woodstock. This was the first album by CSN (David Crosby, Stephen Stills and Graham Nash) that included Neil Young. Stills estimates that the album took six months and 800 hours of studio time to record with multi-layered tracks and lots of overdubs in the mix. Wally Heider’s Studios in San Francisco and Los Angeles were both employed. Continue reading “”

PORSCHE 911 GT3 R HYBRID

The Porsche GT3 R Hybrid race car debuted at the Geneva Motor Show today. This unveiling occurs 110 years after Ferdinand Porsche developed the world’s first hybrid automobile, the Lohner-Porsche. Porsche engineers decided to expand on previous designs by creating a very modern high-tech hybrid. Instead of batteries, braking energy is stored in a flywheel generator that can spin up to 40,000 rpm. Power from the generator is available for six to eight seconds following each charge, much like last year’s Formula One race cars. Continue reading “”

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LEICA’S NEW S2

I’ve been a fan of Leica cameras since I bought a used Leicaflex SL back in 1979. Since then I’ve come to value their mechanical precision, durability and astounding image contrast and shadow quality. M2s, M3s, M4s, M6s, Leicaflexes, R4s, R6s and R8s have passed through my hands over the years.

With each succeeding model, the innovations have impressed just as much as the consistent “look” provided by the superb German optics. Leica has just introduced a brand new Leica S-system that combines 35mm handling with a medium format digital sensor. The first of these S2 cameras and lenses are just now being delivered, and I hope to test one soon. Continue reading “”

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VAN MORRISON : MOONDANCE

“Van the Man” released his third solo album, Moondance forty years ago. After the unstructured recording of his previous landmark album, Astral Weeks, Morrison decided to try his hand at producing his own album using similar techniques. He moved to a home on a mountain top in upstate New York near the village of Woodstock with his wife, Janet Planet. There he enlisted the help of several nearby musicians. Continue reading “”

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SPRINGTIME IN WASHINGTON, D.C.

Yoshino cherry trees will be blooming next month in the nation’s capital. March 27 – April 11 marks the National Cherry Blossom Festival this year. That’s when the banks of the Potomac River and the open National Mall will likely be exploding in fragrant color. The weather will also be more hospitable by then with temperatures in the low 60’s. With so many large parks, the city is ideal for walking tours so bring your camera! Continue reading “”

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SINATRA : NICE N’ EASY

After a few days away, it’s nice to come back to my blog with some classic music. “Ol’ Blues Eyes” was never in better form than on this 1960 chart-topping album. In The Wee Small Hours or Watertown might appeal more to the “sad” Frank fan, but with spring just around the corner I’m in the mood for this collection of breezy mid-tempo numbers and ballads. Continue reading “”

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DRIVING AND 911 DYNAMICS

If you are a Porsche 911 fan and own one of these cars, you may be itching to make some mods or have already done so. The usual intent is to make the car go or look faster. If it’s go faster you are after, money may be better spent on learning from a professional in a safe environment. As a nationally certified Porsche Club of America driving instructor, I’m lucky to have the opportunity to learn from some of the best drivers in the business, and I continue to do so.

One of the key basic lessons taught is that traction is dependent on weight of the car, where that weight is located, center of gravity, grip (tire size, type and stagger) and the smooth application of steering, throttle and brakes. Being smooth is key and takes seat time to perfect. Continue reading “”