September 15, 2005

Trio Recording

As promised, here's a recording of "Internal Combustion":
3.3 MB MP3 File

It's John Reese, Nancy Freitas and me, recorded at my house last night.

September 12, 2005

Internal Combustion

John Reese and I wrote a new song yesterday. It was sort of strange because I wrote the lyrics and emailed them to John, and he wrote the music. Usually John's the wordsmith.

Anyway, here are the lyrics. If all goes well, I'll post a recording later this week.


Internal Combustion
is a slow burning fire.
One hand on the throttle,
one on your desire

Internal Combustion
is a chemical fact
in the heat of the moment,
caught up in the act.

Verse 1:
Masses of people moving this way and that.
Accosted by forces, barely time to react.
But under the surface, untouched by the rain,
fueled with a purpose is a smoldering flame.


Verse 2:
Frozen in time, in a memory stilled,
is the shadow of life in a dream unfulfilled.
Know that it's true, know there's no doubt:
when it reaches the end, the fire will go out.

Internal Combustion has a limit in time.
One eye on the stopwatch, one on the devine.
Internal Combustion in the palm of your hand
Slips through your fingers back to where it began.

Instrumental solo.
Verse 3:
The warmth of a love, unique and intense,
A glow of contentment, commitment well spent,
Desire that gave meaning, in whole or in part,
To those other souls, to those open hearts.

repeat Chorus and fade.

Copyright ©2005 by Bob Lee

August 30, 2005

The Truth

I guess blogs are places where people can bare their souls to the world. Somewhere inside of me is an eighth-grade poet who just loves rhythm, rhyme and introspection. I've never progressed beyond an adolescent level in my poetry, but it's part of who I am. I write a poem every year or two. I usually throw them away. Here's my latest - I hope you enjoy it:

The Truth

The truth is a line from beginning to end.
The truth is a circle, a sphere to transcend.
The truth is a story to the devout.
The truth is a myth, a shadow of doubt.

Truth never changes, truth always is.
Truth contains everything, yours, mine and His.
Truth is the journey, all that we've seen.
Truth lies before us, behind and between.

The truth is a lifetime of triumph, then shame.
The truth is we've no one but ourselves to blame.
The truth is alone in the still of the night.
The truth is exposed in the sunny day light.

So when truth confronts us, and can't be denied,
When truth and the tales spun about us collide,
Know that the truth is not just about you -
Agnostic and fearless, it's simply what's true.

The truth is a festival, filled with delight.
The truth is a massacre, teeming with fright.
The truth is a lifetime of fear, joy and pain.
The truth is a love both profound and profane.

Truth never changes, truth always is.
Truth contains everything, yours, mine and His.
Truth lies before us, around the next bend.
Truth is the life from beginning to end.

Thanks to my Aunt Dolores Fruth, an accomplished poet, for the inspiration and encouragement.

August 17, 2005

Three Octave Marimba

I had some film left over in the camera after my recent trip to Pennsylvania so I took a picture of the bigger marimba. It's a funky old instrument with not much tone, but it's okay for learning. I bought it on Ebay for just $266.

August 06, 2005

John Reese - Navarro

Some songs are just perfect for my little diatonic marimba. Here's a living room recording of John Reese, Nancy Freitas and me playing John's picturesque masterpiece "Navarro".

June 08, 2005

My Newest Toy - a Marimba!

I bought this on Ebay. Here are the specs from the Ebay ad:
  • New Diatonic Marimba with Solid Oak Resonator Box
  • (Includes one pair of yarn mallets)
  • 12 Padouk Bars crafted by Salazar Fine Tuning
  • Range: A4 - E6, A=440
  • ( A, B, C#, D, E, F#, G#, A, B, C#, D, E )
  • Bar Sizes: Width: 1 1/2" * Thickness 7/8"
  • A4 bar length: 13" * E6 bar length: 9"
  • Bars are double octave tuned A4 through E5
  • Beautiful Resonator box made of 3/4" solid quarter sawn oak (not plywood)
  • Instrument measures 25 1/2" long by 13" wide by 4 1/2" tall
  • Instrument weight: 9 lbs.
This is my first marimba. It has a very nice, quiet tone. I'm really enjoying playing it.

May 23, 2005

Electro Media Mix CD-R

In 1969 made some recordings on a very cheap cassette recorder in San francisco. I recently bought a machine that makes CDs from tapes, so I decided to transfer some of my old cassettes. This is the first.

These recordings are not music - they're a mix of electronic and acoustic noises - but they're mildly interesting. The sound quality is pretty bad. My CD-R package includes liner notes describing my frame of mind at the time and pictures of the original cassettes. It runs about 45 minutes. It might put you to sleep if you try to focus on it, so don't listen to it while driving at night.

If you want one, send me a $5 bill and ask for the "Electro Media Mix CD".

Bob Lee
PO Box 719
Cloverdale CA 94952

May 17, 2005

Image Anomaly

Here's a satellite photo of San Francisco, courtesy of Google Maps.

On the lower half of the picture, you see the south face of the buildings as expected. But above the center line, you see the north face of City Hall, the Federal Building, etc. It's like the map is actually two photos taken from different angles (above the equator & north pole?) and then spliced together.

At first I thought is was an optical illusion, but the more I look at it the more I think something's fishy here.

April 27, 2005

Steel Guitar Jam

I participated in a steel guitar jam in San Jose last Saturday. My good friend Jim Baron and I manned two laptops running Band-in-A-Box. I used my Mac OS X Powerbook, and Jim used a Windows XP machine. Jim solved my Mac's crappy BIAB sound problem by loaning me a Roland Sound Canvas, which we hooked up via MIDI through an Edirol interface. A spendid time was had by all!

March 18, 2005

Bill Lawrence

Bill Lawrence Website - that's the real Bill Lawrence. The "Swampkaster Guitars" and "Bill Lawrence Pickups" web sites are pushing products that are not made by Bill Lawrence. Bill and Becky Lawrence are friends of mine and they're real nice folks. The imitator's name is Jzchak Wajcman, and I say he's a crook. He is using Bill's name and is trading on Bill's reputation. Read Becky's page about him here.

March 15, 2005

Cloverdale Facts

Neighborhood Finder Detail - MSN House & Home - I found this page about Cloverdale. It includes demographics, but oddly omits any ethnic information. I really wonder what percentage of Cloverdale is Hispanic. Seems to be a lot of Spanish speaking people here.

March 09, 2005

Bad GET after POST

There are bugs that keep you up at night. This was one of them. Our web site at has been getting a flood of error reports in the JRun log. There were no bug reports from users, though, and nothing that I did on my test machine could duplicate the error reports i was seeing on the production site.

Coworker Brad found the problem before I logged in this morning. It was specific to the Firefox browser. It seems that under certain conditions, Firefox will fire off a GET request with no parameters following a valid POST. The users got their response from the POST request, and the GET fell into the error log.

I rewrote the code to ignore the bad GET requests if the UserAgent is Firefox. That should fix it.

March 08, 2005

css Zen Garden

css Zen Garden: The Beauty in CSS Design - I knew that CSS was a powerful design tool, but nothing had prepared me for this. The HTML content of all the pages is exactly the same - only the cascading style sheet has changed. Amazing, beautiful page designs!

March 07, 2005

Connections 2

CD Baby: VARIOUS ARTISTS: Connections 2 - I found this link to a CD that I have a track on. It's a really good album by local Sonoma County people, created to benefit KRCB radio.

March 06, 2005

Open Hearts Band

Open Hearts Music is a web site I created for my main band, John Reece and Open Hearts. It was my first try at DreamWeaver templates. Nothing fancy. One nice touch is the way the color scheme extends to the scrollbar in Internet Explorer.

I'm a lot further into DreamWeaver now, and I'm thinking of redoing the site. I've been experimenting with PHP and MySql a bit. I'd like to try adding some real interactive features so our fans could post messages and build a bit of a community there.

A bit of history

The first b0bletter was hard copy, created in Aldus PageMaker under Windows Runtime. Windows Runtime was distributed with PageMaker at the time because very few people had Windows.

I had invested in an HP laser printer, and the b0bletter was my first excursion into computer-generated page layout. It was just two pages, and it talked about the things that I had been doing recently. I think there were 3 issues. Nobody subscribed, so I just lost interest.