16 October 2009

The New O'Connor House

A walking tour of Steve's house up the street that he just rented, where Frank and Allyson, his son-in-law and daughter formerly from Montana, also live.

It is a deep, narrow affair. I call it a shotgun shack, which is somewhat of a disservice to it obviously. However, the dimensions do pose a challenge in terms of fitting in bedroom furniture from the San Diego house that has been in storage for awhile here.

The first floor:

The second floor:

This is Steve' study where he composes. In his younger days, he was a full time musician in L.A., playing both in the studio and at live appearances with small combos and larger bands. I can listen indefinitely to his stories about those days. As he recalls it. . . . The jazz musicians were intensely competitive, many times downright mean people. The best of them did three things: sleep, have sex, and practice, all to the accompaniment of heroin. The horn players particularly. They needed to outplay the guy sitting next to them in the band. The heroin would become a progressively overpowering accompaniment until, for example, the guys sitting next to a player in the band, formerly one of the best players, would have to help him stand up for his solo.

Steve saw an out from this in composing and took it. Then he found that with modern technology he could compose a movie soundtrack, for example, here in San Miguel and easily communicate back and forth with the people who had engaged him for modifications, adjustments, and such. AND his clients loved to come visit him and deduct it. He has done a wide variety of projects, a movie being a big project now and again. He recently finished a soundtrack for one. That is why that came up.

The music is for Scare Zone. It is a horror flick. Heh, heh, as Candy would say. Unfortunately, I believe you are going to have to be a Facebook person in order to have any luck making that link work. Here is a relatively recent bio of Stephen O'Connor. Here is an older bio.

He still plays jazz guitar regularly here with other local jazz musicians in the restaurants and clubs. He is awfully good. I used to have the pleasure of listening to him practice outside here at the tennis courts in the morning. A nice way to enjoy one's coffee. I heard this once. He played “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” like I had never heard it before. Then he changed the key and fingering and played it again, a totally different piece of music. Then he changed the key and the fingering again, and again a totally different piece of music. And on and on. In other words, he did not just play Somewhere Over the Rainbow. He played twelve different Somewhere Over the Rainbow's. Only an example of what I am talking about.

By the way, that mahogany or teak cup with the metal straw near the monitor is a mate cup. Mate is a very popular drink in Paraguay and Uruguay and the national drink of Argentina. It is “tea.” I put that in parenthesis because it will definitely give you a non-alcoholic jolt. There is a Uruguayan outdoor café just down the street a way that makes it the way it is supposed to be made.

Steve is tired of dealing with his "stuff," too. He claims that within the next six to nine months, 90% of the stuff in this house will be disposed of and gone.

Frank and Allyson's bedroom is on this floor, but I did not photograph it. They were away.

The roof:

Totally concrete, of course, with all the plumbing buried in that concrete. The walls are not true. There are other little touches like the fact that the stairs to the roof narrow as you get closer to the roof.

This is the space between the outside of the wall of the house and the inside of the outer wall. They will eventually build a shed here to house Frank's tools and such.

It is a charmer, this little house, particularly the roof. I hang out there occasionally and have not been asked to leave yet.


Anonymous said...

I like the roof!

Beej said...

I like how the stairs narrow.

Ruth said...

To the roof! To the roof!

Señor Steve said...

And it was to the roof this morning for espresso.

Stagg said...

Youa re one lucky Steve-Senor!!

Señor Steve said...

I know, Stagg. I know. What can I say? I am just. . . .one lucky Señor Steve.