Blog Image

The Selfish Idealist

_____________________

When you do things for yourself, do you have to be destructive towards the world? Life can be made fairly good both for you and for the rest of us.

Maybe you'll not only help out, but even give everybody a good laugh from time to time.

Interesting books...on the outside of Bislet Bok, an independent bookshop in Thereses gate, Oslo.

Be brave, don’t be so brave

Comment Posted on 04 Jan, 2020 16:35

Is your highest duty to defend your country…with a gun?

Actually, I believe quite a few here in Europe would see it differently.

For my part, as I have said to you already, I feel that maybe the foremost duty of a politician is to avoid war, not to plan for it.

To do that…you have to make plans…for peace.

Why…do you consider your country to reach all across the world?

Why do you consider it lawful and ok to attack foreign people, even officials, in their own country, and call it defense of yourselves?

It’s weird.

You know what?

On that video…

You look almost like you’ve found yourself, as is the cliché expression is here.

You look rather friendly, in a very strange way.

You…also look like a boy who finally got down to doing what mom told him to do.

You are…I can’t quite find the English expression, but the way one used to look in my childhood when you were a good boy and happy for it.

Opprømt.

You can probably find someone who knows enough Norwegian or maybe Danish, to explain this word to you. It’s a pretty old-fashioned word which you maybe find mostly in literature, but it means something.

It’s how you describe someone coming home with his first girlfriend or something. Telling dad that you got drunk for the first time, and it was ok.

You have red cheeks.

You sound actually happy, humble, almost.

You call that general a terrorist.

You believe that to be a reason, if it is true, for doing…anything?

Of course, a human can’t go much farther than killing another man or woman.

You caught him in the act? …of planning things?

What…do you know of, understand, about democracy?

Dictatorships are known for killing people because of thoughts, because of words that are said or written. Because of plans.

Ok, he’s a general.

But he doesn’t live in the States. He’s not a subject of the United States. Even if he were, you would not have the legal right to gun him down.

He’s probably done things too, but don’t you think you should leave that to the Iranians?

“I terminated him”?

You killed him.

You seem to be a religious man, at least you go to meetings and let yourself be prayed for.

If I were a relative of yours, I would say, go to church, alone, and if you go to a service, stay for a while after it is finished, and think. 

Pray, with no words, just let God, if you are actually a believer, be there.

Let God be there, and see what happens.

Don’t ask for anything, just be…open.

Actually, you should do something like this regularly.

It doesn’t have to be going to church, just go to a place where you think it’s calm and where you are yourself and can think soundly.

But if you go to church, then pray for the man you killed, and for the many men and women who will be killed in the war that will hit us all if you don’t stop it.

You.

If you’re not able to pray for yourself, light a candle for yourself. It’s supposed to accompany a prayer, so that maybe, if you think about that candle, the thought and the prayer follow you for a couple of hours, after you have left the church.

I feel that a public position very often is a stupid position. Everyone seems to have opinions about you, and when the shouting starts, no one can really hear much, not even from a position…on the street.

But if you do stupid things when you’re on the top…

Why do this?

Someone, maybe many people, must have abused you or stopped you, probably, to make you look like that in a situation like this – stopped you mentally, from reaching a pretty important goal in life: To accept yourself.

I mean, we all have problems with ourselves.

No one is…perfect.

On that video, you look happy.

It’s not a sound thing to be happy because you have killed a man, or even, when you have just killed him.

Let alone happy for starting a war.

A war doesn’t solve problems, it creates problems.

It creates above all, death, and it creates destructed houses, and it creates refugees…

I’m not saying the general is an innocent man. Probably not, but I don’t know anything about him, not more than I know, in general…about Iran.

None of us are, of course, innocent, but what you accuse him of…check out your own country’s history. You don’t even have to know very much, it is enough to mention South America. I think still many here can remember Chile. That also gave us refugees, I know one.

Sometimes the situation somewhere is difficult to understand, or we, the newspaper readers, don’t have enough time to follow every conflict in the world, or every conflict that you, the united States of America, is involved in. But I have heard the noise from Venezuela, Colombia etc. right now, or recently.

I can hear hatred in your voice when you talk about islam.

can tell you that the more I learn about people I meet, the more I love them, and the more I like their culture. Their ways of acting, talking, their food, music, the whole package. Humour.

Islam is not one thing, as Christianity is not one thing, although there are of course some common features with both.

No, I don’t think you should get hung up with the bad sides of anyone, really, if you can avoid it.

Start with the cool things, then see what is possible.

I think it has become a pretty normal thing to think, here in Oslo, that there are crazy people everywhere. 

But you don’t have to support them in their madness.

I would say, better to meet everyone in their sanity first, so that the madness and crazy things can find their place in safe surroundings.

Fun.

Jokes.

Sports. Be a sports shooter, why not?

Or find yourself another sport to participate in.

Go to a game.

Listen to whatever music.

Go for a walk.

Be cosy, if you get things out that way, and if you can get close enough to someone.

If I can’t live like this, this is still what I want.

I have bad sides as well, I act stupidly, cowardly, whatever, but seriously…

Starting a war…and why?

If you don’t know the consequences of this, maybe Europe can help you on the way. 

I think, as I’ve said, mentally, we’re not more than just about finished with the second world war. 

Even I, who are born in 1963, don’t want more of that stuff. It took me my life until now to sort out just a little bit how my parents actually took it, because they hardly told me anything about it. They must have been afraid more or less their whole lives, in a sense, experiences, in their childhood, that was not really finished in their heads.

A war contains arguments, that is what I frequently say. This is actually a sad fact, because discussions should happen with words. The aim of a discussion is to find out something or to solve a problem.

So use words, not weapons.

Go see a John Wayne movie instead of this, and instead of feeling as high up as him, afterwards, think of it as a game. Not quite real.

Shoot.

Ha ha, just kiddin’.

You can call it sublimation.

It means that you feel the same things when you watch the movie as you would have if you did for real the things John Wayne do on the screen.

YOU GET IT OUT OF YOUR MIND THAT WAY.

Some of he shit we all carry.

That’s one of the ideas with art, of all kinds, sports, whatever.

Be a fucking monk this time, Don…

Overcome yourself, if that is necessary.

I don’t want more sad faces from the Middle East flooding in, because some people here gets so stirred up when they see a hijab somewhere, they can’t think anymore.

Everybody needs peace. 

We all want it.

So give it to us.



A starry night, maybe

Music, Uncategorised Posted on 04 Jan, 2020 04:57

http://www.gothesen.no/Eriks_verden/Erik_spiller_files/An%20imaginary%20trip%20to%20Baku%203.mp4

For those of my readers who are not familiar with my music, here is one improvisation on the piano: An imaginary visit to Baku, inspired by Azerbaijani friends whom I met in Oslo and who live here.



Links in web pages

Digital sanity Posted on 04 Jan, 2020 02:20

Another side of the computer world that struck my mind the other day, is links.

In all the articles I have written about the computer universe, I have been looking for problems, so to say, elements that confuse my…established world of knowledge in certain ways.

To talk about “an established world” of knowledge may seem strange, but as I see the computer as it is used today, quite a bit of it does crash into established ways of thinking.

My writing on this is maybe one-sided in another direction, but we will have to discuss how to merge those two worlds, if you see it like that, how the “new” world should relate to the “old” world is a very necessary thing to talk about.

Both ways too, of course.

But what role do links play, what function in my head do they meddle with?

I would perhaps say, associations, associative thinking.

I remember conversations with friends from the north of Norway, a culture (well, actually several) which own a fantastic, crazy ability to imagine things. I will never get a full overview of this (happily) but it works pretty well for a lot of purposes, for instance creating new ideas where there are no solutions to a problem, or to see totally absurd connections in life or in society, so you totally crack in a flow of meaningless or meaningful laughter, often both a the same time.

In short imagination, to coin it a little properly and a little blandly.

I also get ideas, sometimes fanciful ones, but I was born in a calmer environment than the storms and the incredible idylls of the real north. I am ok with the calmer parts of Norway too, I love Follo and Asker and other slopes of farmland or hilly woods, where I grew up or lived later on. Oslo too, not far from nature, but still a small city. Nature, the surroundings, give me ideas down here too, just different ideas than up north.

The differences of the country are also not absolute, I think, they are a matter of degree.

Anyway, everyone has his or her own associations, to begin with. Your own ideas…that is what comes out of associative thinking.

There are other ways of being creative, also mentally, but this is actually pretty important. 

And under my fingers an before my eyes I find a machine world, and of course, the people who create it every day are also there, their ideas and habits come out of my keyboard and the screen. This world is for me not entirely positive, it moves me to and fro, in many different directions, often away from myself, it often works against my will. 

If you fit into this world very well, you may feel at home, you may even feel that it confirms your thoughts, I have heard people say that the computer itself gives them new ideas for work.

Well, for me maybe in some ways, too. But in many ways the opposite.

But talking about links, every time I push a button, symbol, something that contains a link, I am moved into a new world, basically, a new website or a new page on the same website, talking to me about something else than the text or the pictures that I moved from.

I didn’t make that path, even if I made the move, so to speak.

It came to me from the creator of the website.

Of course, new ideas, outside of this screen world, may also come from other people and other sources than yourself, but then it comes from…the world. 

This whole world is made by humans, even though it more and more functions as the world for us.

The links are another problem connected with it, and one may then of course ask all the usual questions about what sources the editors use and choose, what mentality does the publication maintain, what political views, etc. – and how it connects to this bit of the whole thing.

For instance the questions of political biases and objectivity vs subjectivity in journalism, etc.

Links are just another element, but still, an important one, I think.

Habitual thinking may be a bigger problem than before, if you don’t watch out.

It’s always been a problem, but today…hm.

Edited after publishing, sorry.



Too much carbon dioxide

Comment Posted on 04 Jan, 2020 01:10

You know, Don, the scientists who actually do research on the climate, all agree.

There is no disagreement in the basic facts among them.

That you have a degree or a PhD in another branch of natural science or another branch of science…it doesn’t necessarily give you expertise on this issue.

Some say that carbondioxide is a “life giving” gas, part of nature.

Yes, it is, but in addition to this, we pour it out, so all in all it becomes too much.

The basics are actually as simple as that.



What kind of concept?

Digital sanity Posted on 02 Jan, 2020 23:09

An important issue in today’s Internet…situation is of course what algorithms that are used, what calculations are at the bottom of what we read, so to speak. They often lead our thoughts, ways of thinking, in certain directions, and are, I believe, mostly kept secret.

But another thing which is also important, is how the concepts which form this screen world are formed, and which they are. The algorithms read as concepts formed in words.

Someone sufficiently educated in informatics would probably be able to answer those questions reasonably well, but for me as a lay person, the question is, what is actually the structuring principle or principles of this work?  Programming and the organising of data the way it is done today is for a greater part based on math, and the work, to me, seems much like finding the simplest way of organising everything, possibly the smallest common denominator for two or more different elements in the construction that build up a website, for instance.

But how is this done, just slightly more concretely, and how does the math translate into words and sentences and the rest? What principles are in use?

Normally, in a book, we would be allowed to form concepts much more independently of the texts that we read.

Today this is no longer the case to the same extent as in the times before computers, we are guided more often than with written media into specific ways of thinking and ways of organising facts, most often without us knowing it, perceiving it, consciously.

This doesn’t have to be done with a conscious purpose, it also often just happens, through the transformation of the editor’s attitudes or the developer’s, and also the owner of the media, his or her personality or habits of thinking into the texts that we read and treat in different ways.

It’s not only about the content of a text anymore, form has new meanings and new impact.



Gas

Comment Posted on 19 Dec, 2019 14:19

You know…mister…president.

I’m going to say something about climate change, because, ehm, actually, you don’t get it.

Honestly.

I haven’t heard all you’ve said about the topic, but a little. Some politicians here, I think, say fairly the same.

You talk about clean air, the best water etc, that you want that and at the same time a strong economy, industry etc.

I don’t know if you keep those promises or whether those things always go easily together, but obviously, they are important.

You’re 76.

I am 55, and I was an environmental activist when I was a teenager, in the 70s and 80s. 

Climate change was not an issue then, but pollution definitely was. There was sulphur dioxide coming in over Norway from Britain, and from the European continent, the rain contained this stuff, it made the lakes here sour and the fish died.

There were local problems.

Stuff like that.

Pollution.

I don’t know whether all those problems are solved by now in our part of the world, but everywhere I think practically everybody knows that you can’t just dump waste in nature, or let out stuff into the air, if you do it, it will have some consequences in nature, of some kind, and of course consequences for us, humans, as well, in the end.

There were people talking, back then, about pollution, the way some talk about climate change today.

The way you talk about it, perhaps. 

I think, basically, they did not believe that it was a global problem or a general problem. They had done what they did for a long time, others before them, and they couldn’t understand that they couldn’t go on with it. 

But we obviously managed to convince you and your generation about those things.

Or you convinced yourself. Anyway, the things were what they were.

The reason this became a problem that we had to solve, that it was not any more only a local problem, must have been that the size of the industry increased, along with, of course, the number of people.

Few people, little production, simple technology, less problems of this kind. 

You burn your garbage somewhere and no one cares, because there is not so much garbage and not so many people.

The growth in wealth leads to problems, actually, but also the growth in creating that wealth in more complicated ways, with more technology, more fuel, more processes, etc.

Producing more stuff, sometimes of better quality, sometimes not, but of course, filling stomachs and making people a little more relaxed when it came to the issue of poverty.

But this, the CO2 thing, is not really about pollution.

CO2 has always been there.

It is a gas that we breathe out, as you know. The plants take them in etc. 

Everybody knows that. I don’t know who discovered this, but it is old knowledge.

It’s kind of strange that everybody don’t seem to know about the greenhouse effect in the same way, because that is also not exactly new knowledge.

I learnt about it in grade 8, maybe, around that age. 

The climate problems was not an issue back then. 

It’s just that when you burn things that contain carbon, you produce carbon dioxide, normally, if the burning goes on in a sufficient amount of air.

I have an edition of Encyclopedia Britannica, from around this time, the early 80s, and it mentions the climate problems as we know hem today, as a possible problem in the future, suggested by some researchers.

I’m definitely not a chemist or a natural scientist, but carbon is everywhere in the living world. Coal is mostly carbon. Oil contains a huge amount of carbon. Natural gas too. And other stuff.  Wood, plants. I think even humans contain a lot of it. 

Well, in motors, power plants, that covers a lot, doesn’t it? – we burn oil and gas and coal.

And out comes – CO2.

The carbon connects to oxygen in the process.

Pff, pff.

All the time.

You start your car – pff pff, a little CO2, unless it is an electrical one.

If you warm up your house with oil – pff pff…

You cook with gas – pff pff…

If your electricity comes from a power plant run on coal – pffff pfff. Bigtime.

That’s a fact.

Sorry to say this to you.

Norway is a pretty hilly country, so we have a lot of waterfalls, and they were made into power plants 100 years ago, roughly.

We used to have cheap and “clean” electricity. The rivers suffered, I believe, but at least – no CO2 from the production.

Now we’re also a pretty big oil producer, so we contribute substantially to the world production – of CO2. Pfffff pff. 

We got rich on that production. Well, well.

Today there is around 0,04 % CO2 in the air around us. A little less than a half percent.

Still, it’s one of the gases in the atmosphere regulating the temperature on earth.

As I said, I think I learnt it at school around age 14 or 15.

The greenhouse effect.

A French guy, a researcher, used that expression for the first time in the 1820s, and during the 1800s the fact was established, that CO2 is a climate gas, contributing to the regulation of the temperature on earth.

99% of the atmosphere, by the way, is about 30 000 km thick.

There are  5.15×1018 tons of gas all together in the atmosphere.  That means…

5 150 000 000 000 000 000. 

Roughly 5 billion billion tons of gas.

That’s the whole thing, including oxygen and nitrogen and CO2 and the rest.

The amount of gas in the atmosphere, all of it, is biggest near the surface, and it gets thinner the farther away from the ground you get. There’s no clear limit to where it ends, but it gets thinner and thinner and in the end it’s almost nothing.

And then…nothing.

Nada.

What’s inbetween the planets and even the moon is actually nothing.

Empty space.

Can you believe that?

can hardly believe it, or imagine it.

But it is true.

The atmosphere contains about 78% nitrogen and 21 % oxygen. So those two combined is about 99% of the mass of gas that we breathe in and that surrounds us.

The 0,04% of CO2 weighs 3000 billion tons. That’s a figure from 2015, according to English Wikipedia. I mean, the amount is rising.

Then there are noble gases, very little. Argon, mostly, a few others. They’re actually called noble gases, I had to look up the English word, it sounded  a little weird.

Then methane, laughing gas (actually, yes, nitrous oxide), ozone, and CO2, all of these socalled climate gases, contributing to the regulation of the temperature on earth. 

Vaporised water too, the same, also a temperature regulator. Skies, fog, etc.

Parts per million is another way of measuring chemicals, meaning the number of molecules of something, a substance, compared to the total you measure. 

400 ppm of CO2, in the air, was reached in 2019.

400 molecules of CO2 per every million of molecules of air.

Doesn’t sound much.

But it’s enough to scare researchers who deal with climate. 

The figure is rising.

Has been doing so for quite a while.

Before the industrial revolution, the amount was about 280 ppm.

CO2 contributes only to a part of the temperature adjustment on earth. 

There are other gases, and of course other factors. 

Local temperatures…also not the same as a global temperature average.

But the reason everybody is upset about CO2 is that it is the one factor that is really increasing. A gas that we, the humans, make in abundance right now. 

There is no doubt that this gas is coming out of our factories and power plants and cars. Trains, even, planes. You know, everywhere, every thing that uses a combustion engine, also.

You burn fuel.

The amount of CO2 in the air is increasing, simply because people get richer, production rises, people can afford to buy more and more things that are coming out of those factories.

You produce more, you burn more fuel.

You transport the stuff around the world. The ships, cars, trains, have motors. 

You just check your own statistics, or anyone else’s.

Normal measurements have been made since the 50s, from the air on the ground or upwards in the atmosphere, and to find out things before that, you basically go to glaciers, or ice in the Arctic or the Antarctic, and you take some samples from down below, and you bring them up. 

In the samples, there are bubbles of air, and since those bubbles stay there – it’s been frozen for a long time, you know! – those bubbles can be from way back.

And from how far back? 

That’s the kind of things scientists know, how long the ice have been on a specific spot on a specific depth.

So they’re able to tell the amount of CO2 many years back…hundreds, thousands, and they can make a graph.

The climate researchers are, among other things, afraid that the permafrost is going to go away. You know, in the Arctic, the ground is normally frozen even in summer, if you go just a little below the surface. You check for yourself how deep down. 

But thaw, in the ground, in the Arctic.

There are signs that it may happen. Then also CO2 which is bound…in the ground, will come up. 

No scientists who actually deal with climate issues seem to be in doubt about the basics in this problem.

Some retired people, or people who work in other fields, protest. 

Along with people who honestly don’t know much about science.

As I see it the whole thing is a consequence of getting rich enough…to deal with poverty.

A fantastic thing in itself.

I believe that historically, poverty is not going to be the biggest problem on earth in, say, a 100 years.

Maybe even long before.

That’s…huge. Historically, really big. 

Think about it. It’s been the biggest trouble for the biggest part of mankind. Always.

Poverty has really been reduced, only the last 30-40 years. The last 100 too.

So…that’s fantastic, right?

But…side effects.

To solving that problem.

Yep.

I think that this is…how do you put it?

…the big picture.

You eat more, you produce more, you burn more fuel, you produce more carbon dioxide, which is a result of every fire, every combustion that happens.

Pff pff.

You try to deal with that.

Sorry, edited after publishing.



Comprehensive

Digital sanity Posted on 18 Dec, 2019 10:35

I’m not sure whether it’s possible to finish talking about or understanding the computer world or not, when you are…kind of critical, and an outsider, not a professional.

It often feels like something that doesn’t have a beginning or an end.

But informatics is taught at universities, so somebody must have some kind of an overview.

Overview, exactly. 

You have that, at least in a certain sense, when you read printed media.

I mean, it is a concrete thing that you use for reading, you can hold a book or a newspaper with your hand, the text is there, it won’t go away or multiply.

Today’s news, for example, a copy of New York Times or even The Sun, books, pamphlets, whatever, you know that this, exactly, is what the author wrote, or what the editors of the newspaper thought was the most important news today or this week, or at least, this is what they wanted you to read.

It’s all there.

If it is a fairly good newspaper, you have kind of an overview after you’ve read your news of today. If you read it regularly, you probably also know more or less where it stands politically, what to expect and therefore what stands out against that background.

This is knowledge you can bring with you into the world of the screen, but there are problems connected to overview.

In a field of knowledge, there is usually something which is called a comprehensive collection of knowledge, and it means that a book, for instance, brings you basically the whole story about the subject, nothing important left out, so that you could possibly use it as a source if you teach the subject in case or are going to teach yourself something. Like a textbook, like an encylopedia. They are, or should be exactly that. Comprehensive.

It may look like all kinds of languages right now are more or less mashed by the marketing department’s need to sell whatever message there is in a text, and the word comprehensive is also used to sell books, to tell you the fact that we have more information than our competitor’s edition  or whatever is the thing that is sold.

Even if some fields of science seem to move pretty fast today, they do not move as fast as the Internet itself. I have in my bookshelf an edition of Encyclopedia Britannica from the 1980s, and there are a lot of basic facts there that haven’t changed much. If they have, it is still useful to adjust the new knowledge to the basics in a field.

If you are going to take a PhD (I don’t have one) you have to have an overview of your field at the moment of writing the dissertation and defending it, which today probably means that you have to spend a good deal of time online to check what new things happen in your field as you work on your dissertation.

But after all, science and research are slower things that journalism, not to speak about blogism. Both newspapers and blogs have a serious and a less serious end, but even the serious one moves faster than research.

We are still humans, capable of forming concepts, grouping facts and issues and making  headlines and paragraphs…and not only technical, like the computer nerds whose products we have to use for writing.

We can still think.

Can’t we?

I hope so.

“Change is the only stable thing” was a headline in an ad for one of those courses which seem to go on everywhere in the business world these days. Even if the business world seems to speed up things and work in this fashion right now, stuff like that makes me think that they somehow lack real education, more knowledge than a practical or economical grasp of what to do, especially in terms of money-making or competition.

Britain was once famous, at least in my head, not only for specialists, but for also educating generalists who could be used in many jobs and circumstances, who of course were supposed to be able to succeed according to a company’s aims, but hopefully also according to other principles, more generally accepted as human or beneficial for people or for society as a whole.

The educated mind, I think it was called.

Not that other countries don’t have the same, of course they do, but the British or English variant or idea seeped into my mind at some point.

I do read a lot of news online, so checking the Britannica or actually studying articles now and then, gives the updated information a firmer ground to stand on. And other literature, when I have time and energy.

The basis of sociology, chemistry, musicology, was laid before the computers, not to talk about philosophy, other life sciences etc. Things happen in science and technology nowadays, absolutely, but especially in the world of humanities I think the past has a lot to give.

The CO2 problem was mentioned in this edition of Britannica as a scientific possibility, not an established fact.

One basic problem today, of politics and also of understanding the world, is that too few think about what should be done, and as a consequence, what is the actual situation? –  instead they think too much only about how to get things done,  and vote for politicians who seem to be able to do things.

What things, and why do exactly this? are at least here in Norway, fair questions to ask.



An Explosive and Creative Organ Event

Music Posted on 04 Dec, 2019 20:21

This is a recension of an event that took place this summer. I started writing it just after the concert, but finished it now.

An exceptional evening for me in Fredrikstad, listening to American organist Cameron Carpenter playing outside on his American municipal type organ, so far unknown to me.

Carpenter is one of those musicians whom you seriously don’t know what is going to do the next moment, you go “What?? It’s not possible” and the next second “It actually is”.

The instrument, although electronic, belongs to a tradition of organ building which started in the USA in the early 20th Century, with instruments being paid for by cities across the States, built in concert venues outside the churches. There were also city organists who were employed and paid by the municipality where this happened, thus the name.

You could perhaps argue that the registration of the instrument is also somehow formed by American mentality and…hm, nature, perhaps, which I believe, without ever having been in the States, is huge and strange enough seen with European eyes…to sometimes call for exceptional musical measures as well.

This organ had a lot of volume, great dimensions of sound and was perhaps made with some physical thinking – some sounds were really violent to my ears. In some peak points of Bach it made me think of the sound of Jimi Hendrix’s famous version of The star-spangled banner, sounding not like machine guns or jet fighters, but perhaps cannons, accompanied by more traditional organ sounds.

I am not an expert on organ music, but these are my impressions.

Most other voices used for the classical pieces were conceived and made in the tradition of acoustic pipe organs as I know it.

Some other pieces in the concert, non-classical stuff, were soundwise and stylistic perhaps with at least one leg into the world of hammond organs, and left a pleasant and more meditative impression, stylistically unproblematic to me.

Some of the most complex and dense parts of the great Bach pieces maybe sometimes had a lack of clarity, a few of Bach’s largest musical knots were perhaps not totally unwound.

But Cameron is a virtuoso and a truly original musician, as I have said.

It was a little difficult for me to take in this new genre, if that is what it is. Because of the greatness both of Carpenter’s talent and of his architecture of sound it left me pretty blown away. Some aggressive outbursts also sounded like too harsh comments on Bach if you wanted simply to listen to his music, but if you considered the performance a world of its own, maybe all parts could go together.

The concert started with Handel, but I missed part of it, and perhaps this would have bound the concert even better together to a whole for me, which Cameron certainly had the ability to do. We actually travelled from light (Handel) via meditation and contemplation to aggresion (some of Bach).

I had the impression that a church roof was blown up in the sky in the final piece. Quite an ending in my ears, at least!

Revolution sometimes happens on stage, that’s part of the game, I would say, and as long as one is able to collect the debris afterwards, put it together again, maybe in another way, and start all over with Bach another evening, it is perhaps no less allowed than directing plays or operas in ways that have been happening for many years. 

Food for thought to say the least, with perhaps a stretch from a normal humble attitude towards Bach to almost hatred in the end. But the greatness of Cameron’s talent made it impossible not to consider seriously what he was doing.

As far as I could judge, both the sound engineers at work and the musician himself did a brilliant job in making this outside event into a very laudible and audible event. I had really no trouble enjoying or hearing very clearly what he was doing musically, apart from the kind of musical shocks that I have described, and that you normally take at least a detour or want to pay a lot to hear. We were sitting on an outside bar with the river flowing quietly in the middle of it all, with hundreds or maybe a couple of thousand listeners on the bridge behind us and along the river. The weather was great and the evening a fantastic one, real magic, which can happen in Norway becauuse of the nature, I can say that as a patriot and an inborn. 

In fact not a bad match, the town of Fredrikstad, nature and art in a pretty spectacular encounter, but with some mixed feelings and a lot to think about on the way home.



« PreviousNext »