Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Demise of the Disc Jockey?

This post has nothing to do with Christmas, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, or the weather. It is about the new age of the musician.

Musicians are making a come back after many years of the disc jockey.  Solo acts, trio's, duo's, and full bands are now seen in bars, weddings, fund raisers, and family events.  They have been taking advantage of social media such as Youtube and Facebook to promote themselves.  Amateurs like myself have been donating videos and the bands have been linking to them as a way of promoting themselves. However, with the large number of musical talent available, getting the gig is becoming very competitive.  Musicians like Phil "Crush" DuMond felt the need to create a more concise video compilation promoting himself so that potential venues can conveniently watch him in a virtual audition.

This is the promotional video that I made for Crush and it is the first that I have ever made under studio conditions with lighting and backdrops.  All the others have been recorded "on the fly" so to speak. Since I published this video on Facebook, I have received some inquiries ..... Will video's like this one kill the D.J just like the Radio Star?

Some raw footage of behind the scenes shots before editing.

Friday, November 23, 2012

What is the Saturday After Thanksgiving Called?

The day after Thanksgiving is called  Black Friday. The busiest shopping day of the year for retailers and consumers. A shopping day filled with frenzy and frustration as bargain hunters hound around for deals.  Tempers have been known to flare as people flock around that "must have" present only to find out the person in front of them just snagged the last one.  Out Of Stock! Back Ordered! 

What about the Saturday after Black Friday, does it have a nick name?  That day should be a relaxing day after a long Thanksgiving day spent with the relatives or that Freaky Black Friday.  Technically Saturday does have a nick name, Small Business Saturday, but it is also Open Mic Night.  Every month Aubrey's Inn located in Cape Vincent invites musicians of all caliber to strut their stuff. It is an opportunity to see jam sessions with unexpected combinations of musical talents. If you are looking for an evening out of the house and away from the stores, then Aubrey's Open Mic night is the place for you to go and relax with your friends.

Saturday November 24th starting at 8PM

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Giving Thanks

I am thankful for:

This day to reflect on our country and all the freedoms we have.

That I can still wish everyone a Merry Christmas.

Freedom of Speech and the Press.

Everyone's choice to either agree or disagree without fear of persecution or retaliation.

My family and those that are still my friends.

President Obama making the "Sign Of The Cross" when he pardoned Cobbler the Turkey.

Happy Thanksgiving

Monday, November 19, 2012

Tax Levy Increases By 91%

Town Of Alexandria:

Holy Mackerel that was quite the HL in this mornings paper.  It sounds awful, almost like "they" were trying to make the board look like a bunch of bumbling idiots.  I can only imagine that some were reluctant [not that word again] to read the article.

I chose to use more understandable numbers when I posted earlier on the town budget.  Like a 33% increase to your assessed property or an 18 cent increase from the original 53 cents increasing it to 71 cents per thousand of assessed property value.  Which means that if your property is assessed at $100,000 then you will only see an $18 increase in your 2013 town taxes.  Sounds easier to swallow than 91% doesn't it?

So I guess I am not making the town board look as bad as Councilman Sweet stated.  Why would I do that, I might be sitting next to some of you next year, or the year after.  But if you want to make me  your enemy, I will "reluctantly" oblige you......

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Alexandria Passes 2013 Town Budget

Town board members adopted a new budget.  This budget has gone through some revisions over the past few weeks.  Supervisor Hunneyman originally presented a budget that had a 30 cent increase per 1000.  It would have raised taxes from 53cents per thousand of assessed property value to 83 cents, approximately a 56% increase.

Taxpayers made their concerns known, which sent Hunneyman back to the drawing board to make cuts to whittle the increase down to something more palatable. Tonight the revised budget was adopted by the Town Board.  The 2013 budget will see a 18 cent increase, raising it to 71 cents per thousand of assessed property value which translates into a 33.962 % increase.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Indian Summer

Two beautiful Indian Summer days in a row. Yesterday the blogger rolled on over to Rodman for a visit with some friends.  We strolled through the fields and the woods taking in the late fall landscapes. Below is a video journal of our day at the Walton Farm.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Alexandria Shaves The Budget

Town Of Alexandria:

In January 2012 Town Supervisor D. Hunneyman was notified that the budget exceeded the 2% tax cap that was imposed in 2011.  An unexpected workman's compensation payment that pushed the budget up $22,392 more than expected caused the town to find ways to rectify the tax cap overage with NY State's Comptrollers Office.

In August of this year, the town board filed local law No. 2 [2012]. This  local law is designed override the tax levy limit established in General Municipal Law $3-c. Allowing the town to  legally exceed the 2% tax cap.

In October the proposed 2013 town budget was made available to local tax payers.  The budget increased by 56% over last years budget. Raising from 53¢ to 83¢ per $1000 assessed property value.  Just a tad bit over the 2% cap wouldn't you say?

In the budgets from 2009 through 2011, the township enjoyed a 0% increase. The 2012 budget saw an 18¢ per 1000 assessed increase.

At last nights town meeting, Supervisor Hunneyman stated that some taxpayers  had contacted him and apparently were not happy with the proposed budget.  Hunneyman found $50,000 that he shaved off the budget, reducing the increase from 56% to 34% or 71¢ per $1000 instead of the original 83¢.

I am not sure how those taxpayers will feel about this amended budget, but I say that it is not good enough. Trying to get this budget more manageable by changing the 3% increase in workers wages to 1% is an insult. Find someplace else to cut, not shave.  Adopt a plan to increase taxes by a moderate amount over the next few years. An 18 or 20% increase over the next few years would be easier for the taxpayers to swallow than a 56% or even 34% increase in the upcoming year.

The budget will be adopted  at a special meeting to be held at the town offices on November 14th at 6pm.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

My Retort

A response to this comment made by a former friend [Pat Simpson] on : "Congratulations Cindy and Gary, glad to see no "reluctant candidate" on our Village Board"

May I make myself clear. I stated that I was a reluctant candidate only because I have been and still am extremely happy with the village board we have now. I was nominated at the caucus because some members believed that if there were two sea
ts open then the Dems should be running the same as would the republicans. As it turned out the Republicans had only one contender, incumbent Cindy Burkhalter Penn. Had I known that at the time I would have declined the nomination. That is why I chose to do nothing as far as a campaign goes. As I have in the past, I do now support Cindy and Gary. I also have the utmost respect for Mayor Jury and the rest of the village board. As far as the Previous boards including that part time mayor, I have no respect.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Village Trustee Unofficial Results

Alexandria Bay:

According to our Poll Watcher, the results are:

Cindy Penn:                   266

Gary Critter Williams:    228

Jim Cummings:              163

Thanks everyone for going out to vote! Congratulations to Cindy and Gary!

Related stories: My RETORT

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Alex Bay Village Trustee[s]

Alexandria Bay:

Two Village Trustee seats are up for grabs this year.  The Democrats have two candidates running, an incumbent and ME.  The Republicans have one candidate, a mayor appointee/incumbent.  I am not mentioning names because they have their signs, political ads, and letters to the editor.  I chose not to do any of that campaign stuff.  Feeling it is rhetoric and  not interested in wasting my time or money, as I would not  waste the tax payers time or tax dollars either.

I know that most people do not like my blog, my politics or me personally .  Those are the cold hard facts.  I can live with that.  As most of you  know, I have attended almost every village board meeting for the past 5 years.  I have sat on the "sidelines" listening and learning and then sharing my thoughts with you.

I am the reluctant candidate.  I really do not care if I win this election or not.  WHY?  Because I am not like the others.  If I lose the election, I will still be at the next board meeting and all the ones that follow.  Just like I have been sitting in that front row seat for the past five years.

I am not going to pitch empty promises to you. That is not my style. I am tenacious when it come to finding the truth and the facts.  Total transparency in local politics has always been my number one goal. I am anti-nepotism, anti-cronyism, and have zero tolerance for the good ole boys.

Jim Cummings
Vote on November 6th!