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Can you help with this session?

Alice 21 Aug 00 - 10:01 AM
SINSULL 21 Aug 00 - 09:33 AM
RichM 21 Aug 00 - 06:03 AM
The Shambles 21 Aug 00 - 03:39 AM
McGrath of Harlow 14 Aug 00 - 10:22 AM
JedMarum 14 Aug 00 - 08:43 AM
CarolC 14 Aug 00 - 08:21 AM
McGrath of Harlow 14 Aug 00 - 07:33 AM
Bert 09 Aug 00 - 11:22 AM
GUEST,Roger the skiffler 09 Aug 00 - 09:05 AM
GUEST,KingBrilliant 09 Aug 00 - 08:37 AM
GUEST,leeneia 09 Aug 00 - 12:13 AM
GUEST,leeneia 08 Aug 00 - 11:43 PM
GUEST,Paddy(1) 08 Aug 00 - 08:46 PM
Callie 08 Aug 00 - 08:13 PM
Peter K (Fionn) 08 Aug 00 - 06:15 PM
Bert 08 Aug 00 - 04:35 PM
Matt Woodbury/Mimosa 08 Aug 00 - 03:30 PM
Dani 08 Aug 00 - 09:13 AM
GUEST,John D. 08 Aug 00 - 07:20 AM
Ella who is Sooze 08 Aug 00 - 04:33 AM
Callie 08 Aug 00 - 01:02 AM
Big Mick 08 Aug 00 - 12:35 AM
JedMarum 07 Aug 00 - 10:54 PM
Sean Belt 07 Aug 00 - 10:38 PM
catspaw49 07 Aug 00 - 08:43 PM
Lox 07 Aug 00 - 08:21 PM
Bill D 07 Aug 00 - 07:42 PM
Peter K (Fionn) 07 Aug 00 - 07:13 PM
The Shambles 07 Aug 00 - 06:14 PM
JedMarum 07 Aug 00 - 07:57 AM
Ella who is Sooze 07 Aug 00 - 04:40 AM
The Shambles 07 Aug 00 - 02:22 AM
Big Mick 07 Aug 00 - 12:16 AM
JedMarum 06 Aug 00 - 11:48 PM
JedMarum 06 Aug 00 - 11:42 PM
Bill D 06 Aug 00 - 08:39 PM
oggie 06 Aug 00 - 06:43 PM
The Shambles 06 Aug 00 - 02:50 PM
Jeri 06 Aug 00 - 11:29 AM
Callie 06 Aug 00 - 10:54 AM
Sean Belt 06 Aug 00 - 10:42 AM
katlaughing 06 Aug 00 - 09:47 AM
katlaughing 06 Aug 00 - 09:14 AM
MandolinPaul 06 Aug 00 - 09:02 AM
The Shambles 06 Aug 00 - 05:06 AM
katlaughing 06 Aug 00 - 12:11 AM
GUEST,leeneia 05 Aug 00 - 11:45 PM
catspaw49 05 Aug 00 - 09:12 PM
The Shambles 05 Aug 00 - 08:14 PM
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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: Alice
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 10:01 AM

Well, the love of music is what I thought drew most people to the Mudcat. If this is really about the Mudcat session, I can relate to not hearing the music. I was hopeful that with advances in being able to share sound files that it would be of interest to people in Mudcat to hear music. Not everyone can play an abc of music. Sure, some can get to hearme, but not all of us can. There are various ways to send sound to each other, but there is not ONE way that works for everyone. Not everyone can even get Mudcat radio. I was surprised that every thread I started with a shared sound file as its topic soon dropped off the page, like this one. I guess having another way to hear music on the Mudcat was not as popular an idea as I thought it would be.

If this is about a "real world" session, then maybe changing it to a different night or time or location is the best remedy.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: SINSULL
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 09:33 AM

Clear the place of whom? And what's wrong with a crowd? The more the merrier. (If we are still talking about Mudcat)


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: RichM
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 06:03 AM

Session or allegory, my thought is the same:

You don't have to play in every tune. And you can't stop others from playing.

Rich


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: The Shambles
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 03:39 AM

If you would allow me to return to the session for a moment?

Musicians new to that session would still find enough good music to enjoy. Unfortunately they may have to put up with those 'old farts' going on about how much better things used to be. Both views may be correct but it is the music produced from that moment, by 'old farts' and the 'newer farts' together, that is important……….. If only they can force their way in to the crowded pub.

Maybe all that farting will help clear the place?


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 14 Aug 00 - 10:22 AM

Here's a quote from Chesterton for anyone who might be feeling pissed off at Shambles because they took the story at face value:

His soul will never starve for exploits or excitement who is wise enough to be made a fool of. To be "taken in" everywhere is to see the inside of everything.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: JedMarum
Date: 14 Aug 00 - 08:43 AM


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: CarolC
Date: 14 Aug 00 - 08:21 AM

I have not been following this thread, and I have not read all of the postings to it. However, from the ones I read about the alegory of the Mudcat, I do have a response that I would like to share.

This is not a session. This is a forum. A session made up of music. A forum is made up of words. Because this is a website for and about music, it makes sense for at least some of the words to be about music. However, since it is about music, it can also be about musicians and music lovers. If it is about musicians and music lovers, then it can be about what musicians and music lovers have to say. And it seems to me that they get to decide what that is going to be.

But to address the session issue, I used to go to what we call here, a jam session. It thrived as long as no-one imposed too many rules. One day the owner of the hall where we held the jam decided to impose quite a few rules that essentially killed it. Now, very few people attend, and most of the best musicians stopped coming altogether.

This is not an allegory. It is a true story. Some things, especially living things like the Mudcat, need to be held with an open hand.

Respectfully,

Carol


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 14 Aug 00 - 07:33 AM

Some pretty important things have been said in parables, so don't knock them.

Maybe it's cultural or because I've met Shambles, but it never occurred to me reading this that it was other than a parable about the Mudcat. I thouight, that's a good way of helping us see this situation from a different viewpoint.

Maybe there is a real session Shambles is talking about as well. It sounds quite a familiar situation.

Maybe there was a real boat called the Mary Ellen Carter. But the reason that's such a powerful song doesn't depend on that, it's about how the story relates to the way we deal with the setbacks in our own lives.

I suppose I can imagine someone saying "That song's no good - there never was such a boat..." But they'd be missing the point. However I don't think people who took Shambles session-gone-wrong at face value should in any way feel they've been cheated. In fact they were better-off, because they were in a position to explore tha analogy better, and help identify some of the ways in which our situation here is similar and is different.

For myself, I think I am squarely on both sides of this argument. I just don't see this distinction between music/song and non-music/song as being a clearcut one.

I can't go very long talking about other issues without some reference to a song creeping into the conversation (like it did just now), so long as I'm talking with people with whom I share that kind of common language ; and I can't go through an evening of songs without some of them turning to the kind of issues that are claimed to be non-music related. There are no issues that are non-music related. If you need convincing of that, just have a browse through the Digital Tradition.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: Bert
Date: 09 Aug 00 - 11:22 AM

Yep, RtS, that's us.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: GUEST,Roger the skiffler
Date: 09 Aug 00 - 09:05 AM

Bert, if the Mudcat is a buffer does make those of us old enough to remember...(well, you know)Old Buffers?
RtS (Old Fogey)


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: GUEST,KingBrilliant
Date: 09 Aug 00 - 08:37 AM

Oh my gawd! Now we have to worry about whether we're clever enough to pick up on the allegories. How this place feeds my paranoia. (belch) Still - everyone seems to have a valid point of view & turns out to be thoroughly decent people. So that's OK after all. Makes my head spin sometimes. Kris


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 09 Aug 00 - 12:13 AM

I have been thinking this over, and I've decided I don't believe that Shambles first message was allegorical. I think s'he submitted it, and when s/he found herself in the midst of a cyber-who's afraid-of-Virginia-Woolf decided just to enjoy the fracas.

Shambles, get out of that pub!


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 08 Aug 00 - 11:43 PM

How do y'all manage to type such long submissions without having your browser announce that you have been on too long with "no activity", then disconnecting you and losing your work?

Is there a place to change the time permitted for mere typing?


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: GUEST,Paddy(1)
Date: 08 Aug 00 - 08:46 PM

Catspaw49 (or do your friends call you spaw?) and Shambles - - - - lighten up.

Nobody takes you seriously except yourselves.

Oh dear, now I am speaking for everyone and one can't do that.

I apologise in advance for this post, I should have hit the 'Clear Entries' button.

Congrats to Bernard for killing the thread.

Paddy(1)


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: Callie
Date: 08 Aug 00 - 08:13 PM

Fionn: perhaps I'm not writing clearly.

Allegory = good

So long as you don't use it to manipulate other people into supporting a personal dislike you have of someone - and all this in a public forum.

This is a non-music thread in the guise of a music thread.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: Peter K (Fionn)
Date: 08 Aug 00 - 06:15 PM

Callie, you seemed to be objecting to someone putting a message across in allegoric form. Perhaps I over-generalised a bit in describing that objection as an objection to imagery.

Some pretty strong messages have been put across in allegory over the years. As a bit of an earth-muffin, I thought that Gulliver challenging the ingenuity of the Lilliputians with his bowel movements was pleasingly effective. The threat of pollution was a serious concern, even in those days.

And just to be clear, I'm agreeing with Shambles only to the extent that I agree with Joe. It's OK, in fact good advice, to say ignore what you don't like. But perhaps we should all be a bit concerned if the music threads get lost among the rest on any day's list, and we've been a bit close to that a few times lately. We should be concerned, because newcomers and passersby will not necessarily see how to pick their way through the chaff to get to the wheat, and simply go away.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: Bert
Date: 08 Aug 00 - 04:35 PM

Well don't feel bad, anyone who missed the allegory.

Mudcat is nothing whatsoever like a session.

To put it in computer terms a session is 'an interactive multitasking environment'. And Mudcat is 'a buffer' (the classical computer definition of a buffer is.. a device for decoupling asynchronous processes).

They are in no way alike. In a session one HAS to listen to the loudest noise and one should not contribute anything that is out of place (or time). At Mudcat one can ignore anything that displeases them, and contribute anything they so desire.

And anyone who says that Catspaw never made a mistake should ask him about a certain courting dulcimer. (gotcha Spaw)

Bert.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: Matt Woodbury/Mimosa
Date: 08 Aug 00 - 03:30 PM

I performed at an open mike night in Jackson WY this summer. Some nights people would be quiet and listen to the music, some nights they made alot of noise at the bar. If I wanted to hear the music, I just had to move closer to the musicians. I got up to do my 3 song set one night, did two ballads, and the noise got louder & louder, so I launched into a raunchy version of "Drunken Sailor". It didn't make anyone quiet down, but I felt better.

There's music in every part of life, and when I look for that, I feel better. There also seem to be drunks in most parts of my life, and when I focus on them, I feel worse. I'll keep looking for better places to find music.


Mimosa


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: Dani
Date: 08 Aug 00 - 09:13 AM

YEESH!

If anyone's even noticed I'm gone, what with all the brawling and philosophising, they'll find me alone at a back table in the bar DOWN THE STREET, humming a tune. This is all too much for me.

Come on down and pull up a chair!

Dani


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: GUEST,John D.
Date: 08 Aug 00 - 07:20 AM


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: Ella who is Sooze
Date: 08 Aug 00 - 04:33 AM

oh dear!

it's all gone pear shaped...

Ella

Hmmmm now, what were we talking about to begin with?

phew!


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: Callie
Date: 08 Aug 00 - 01:02 AM

Fionn: I said nothing about banning imagery. My comments about music have been twisted into some analogy for Mudcat, for what has now manifested as a personal attack on one person. i wonder why Shambles doesn't practice what he preaches and send Spaw a personal message. I'm outta here.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: Big Mick
Date: 08 Aug 00 - 12:35 AM

Great post, Jed. Shambles, with regard to your smart ass comment above, you should learn that skill. Say no more than necessary, let it stand on its merits, and if you get a lot of negative reaction, or no reaction at all, then so be it. I have said before that this place is better with you than without you. But you belabor your position to a point of distraction. I feel no need to defend Catspaw, he is capable of doing that perfectly well if he feels the need. But your focus on one individual, instead of recognizing that the Mudcat is different things to different people puts you square in the group you complain about. Please, continue to contribute in the way you feel you should. Those for whom that has value will engage with you and enjoy doing so as I have at various times. And those areas that you don't like, please don't go in. It is OK, and it is not exclusionary when you choose not to go there. But as long as I started this with a snippy reply, let me end it the same way. Spare me your little jabs and veiled references. You and I don't need to start tangling again. I very rarely fail to read your posts, and I greatly enjoy your poetry. But the snide comments about me and others you don't approve of are not necessary. I will now go and await GUEST to accuse me of being a bully for responding to the provocation.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: JedMarum
Date: 07 Aug 00 - 10:54 PM

if music is all that really matters to Mudcatters - why did we waste so much time on this thread?

I'm done, back to Shenendoah - I always loved that song!


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: Sean Belt
Date: 07 Aug 00 - 10:38 PM

Shambles,

I agree with you that music is what probably drew most of the people who frequent Mudcat here in the first place. And folk music is the overwhelmingly most important pursuit in my life. However, there are other aspects to that life, and if I and other people who feel similarly want to use these electronic premises to express other aspects of my/our/their life, who's to say I/we/they shouldn't? Would you deny yourself the pleasure of, say Rick Fielding's insight into Christianity's influence on folk music because he posts the occasional attaboy for someone's accomplishments?

And even if I did agree with you (at least I think this is what you're looking for) that we should, as much as possible, limit ourselves to discussions of music, who's going to be the arbiter of what is appropriate and what isn't? I found the Music In Your Town thread had some pretty good discussion of music and it's relation to environment. But I'm not sure it would fit anyone else's view of a music thread.

And please be sure that when I use "we" or "ourselves" I'm not referring to any subset of the posters here, but to "we" as in all of those with whom I join in enjoying the Mudcat.

I don't know. Maybe I'm particularly dense, but I just don't have a good grasp on where your ferver for this subject comes from. I'm going to make the assumption that it stems from a desire to see the Mudcat be the best it can. But, I'm also reading some real intolerance that I find disheartening coming from someone who in other instances has so much good to say. Nonetheless...

Best regards,
- Sean


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: catspaw49
Date: 07 Aug 00 - 08:43 PM

Shambles, I am glad you finally said it. For whatever that's worth, at least you brought out your opinions in a straightforward fashion. I admit to having problems understanding you a lot of the time, either because I don't see your point or I can't find it. That's not an insult......I just have a difficult time with your style sometimes.

As to your points........Well, its fair to say we pretty much disagree. You have suggested this before in PM's and I will say again, that to believe I am somehow the "Leader of the Pack" is to give me credit (or discredit) for more than I am capable of doing. There are far too many intelligent, erudite, and strong willed individuals around here for me to have that kind of influence. To think so would be to have a low opinion of an awful lot of people. I don't think I seak for anyone but myself, but I do sometimes speak for those who have made the same point before as I did above.

A god.....C'mon now. I am as fallible as the next person and I've recanted on postings TODAY! Again, I disagree and I can't believe anyone here tinks that for the same reason as above. As to my opinion of myself, its true that I am aggressive at times, sarcastic, egotistical, opinionated, and a lot of other unpleasant things. Those things are also a part of my 3-D personality. Much of my professional life was spent in a field where I HAD to be memorable. I didn't require love or hate......just that they remembered me. So if I'm grating to you, I understand, but it is the real thing for better of for worse. That's not to say that I also don't have a few redeeming qualities, but the mixture is there.

Your bold points.......Again, we disagree. I do use PM's and e-mail and the 'Cat does have a chat atmosphere and I did not create it. It was here when I came. I do respect the views. Two years ago, I would occasionally make a joke or something in a serious thread or a music thread, but several people pointed this out to me and I stopped. When I involve myself in music discussions, I am on topic and try never to let some obvious "one-liner" rear its head. On the very few occasions that has happened since, I profusely apologized in advance. I will completely stop even those few instances as of this moment. But as far as recognizing the statement and not the person, I do and to think I don't is flatly crap. Its inevitable to some degree not to take the person into account as you have gotten to know something of them, but I have NEVER used any such thing and certainly not to exclude anyone.

And yes, I take you into account also. There is no "Gang of 12" here......Its a gang of 1200 and you are as included as you want to be. You don't want to play, don't play. You want to play over here with this toy? Great. You want to play over there with that toy? Great! How do I stop you from doing this?

We've hashed out the "Complimentary Post" issue on several occasions and I still don't see what it hurts to tell someone I like what they wrote, and to do it in the threads. Its not a seal of approval or anything that silly, just an honest admission on my part that they have said/done/thought something worthwhile. I don't see what is wrong with that.

As to the rest......Let's face it, we have two different views of the 'Cat and they share some similarities and there are some differences. I am NOT trying in any way to exclude you and I'd like to believe you aren't excluding me. I also disagree that I get involved in a lot of name calling, but in this case, I will.......but hopefully in a humorous light.

I ahve no idea whether or not we'd get along in 3-D. We might have some interesting things in common and we might have absolutely nothing. But the one thing I do have is respect for you as a person or I wouldn't bother writing this. The one thing I am sure you have is respect for people. At the moment though, you probably view me as an overbearing, obnoxious, manipulative, smart-ass and I view you as an anal retentive stick in the mud. So what? I recognize you as an individual, so am I. We are both a part of this place and neither your vision nor my lack of it is strong enough to alter the group dynamics here. I can't believe either of us has that power.

I know this will trigger another missive from you, but so be it. I may or may not respond to it. These are not new "issues" and I have answered in a straightforward manner. We disagree. So what? This isn't one of those cowboy flicks where some guy says "This place ain't big enough for the both of us." It is, but the choice is yours and mine to stay.

I'll remember to take your thoughts into account and temper my postings at times, but I doubt I will ever satisfy you totally. We just don't see the world the same way I guess.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: Lox
Date: 07 Aug 00 - 08:21 PM

Whether Shambles is being allegorical or not, my answer stays the same.

I go to sessions to have a good time. I don't get into fights because I can't be bothered with them. I'm usually too busy playing music, listening to music, laughing at jokes/stories or learning about who people are.

I don't take sides, and I won't vote shambles or catspaw when the election comes, because, as much as shambles ego would have us believe that we are blindly being driven, like sheep, by his and catspaws guiding influence, I am in fact an irrepressible individual.

Now will you please sit down or else go and order a pint, because it has come to my attention that I haven't laughed in almost 3 minutes!!!!!!!!!!!!

(And while you're at it, ask the band why they've stopped playing ... oh, they didn't? ... well, it can't have been very important then.)

Somebody take the lead please.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: Bill D
Date: 07 Aug 00 - 07:42 PM

...that is certainly clear enough Shambles. I appreciate the expression and analysis and have a lot of sympathy for the 'accomidations' you request....and yes, I suspect catspaw can contemplate and respond to the issues himself if he cares to.

We sure are diverse bunch, aren't we?


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: Peter K (Fionn)
Date: 07 Aug 00 - 07:13 PM

Maybe it's my warped mind, or too much reading Pilgrim's Progress, but I knew Shambles' scenario was allegorical as soon as I'd read it. I was surprised at how many missed it, even after two or three nudges from wide-awake cats.

But please don't ban all imagery, Callie and others. If you were fooled, take it on the chin, like Jed did (some good sentiments, Jed). Where would folk songs and poetry be without imagery?

For my part, as one who must surely be in Shambles' sights, while at the same time having upset his enemies, I am resolved to move at least at little in his direction.

In future I may well be sucked into non-musical threads, but I'll not start any. I started a thread about prisoner releases in Ulster recently. I had intended it to be thought-provoking, but it turned out that some people - not unreasonably - read it as just provocative. The thread turned up some useful banter in the end, but more by luck than judgment, on my part.

So when it comes to starting threads, I'll stick to music-related. My small contribution to making sure, as Joe Offer put it in another thread, that any newcomer, referred here for music reasons, is going to see at least a few music threads among the dozens listed.

But I can only go with you so far, Shambles. In fairness to Catspaw, I'm sure I've seen him reconsider posts several times, and he's entitled to have that said by a non-clique third-party, even if he's capable of saying it himself.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: The Shambles
Date: 07 Aug 00 - 06:14 PM

In my time as a contributor to The Mudcat, Max and many other individuals have made great positive efforts to add to the appeal of the Mudcat. Including such as:
The DT and projects to provide midi and tunes.
The Midi Tune Site
The Mudcat Song Book
Mudcat Radio
The Resources Site
What's On
The Newcomer's Guide
Hear Me
General fund raising, auctions, meets and many other projects, to whom I apologise if I have not listed their efforts (I knew I shouldn't have started a list).

In that time I have also seen the emphasis on the forum move from discussions on songs and music, to shorter posts on just about anything. This move has been largely the influence of one individual poster.

It is to that person's credit that these public personal exchanges have come to represent to many people, what they think of when they talk of The Mudcat. It is the example that he sets, that is followed.

I am sure that Catspaw is a nice bloke. I have read many of his more considered and thoughtful postings with interest from the time that he first started posting on The Mudcat. His influence, due largely to the sheer volume of those postings, even if nothing else has been remarkable.

What I question is whether that influence on The Mudcat has been a good one?

I may be missing something but I am under the impression that he is not a god but a human being. Human beings screw-up, but not apparently Catspaw. For I do not think that he has ever accepted any criticism (certainly from me), as having any validity.

Over that time there have been many objections as to this change of emphasis and many heated exchanges. A number of posters do not post as often and some have stopped contributing altogether. The designation of threads with BS was introduced to help with this but has not prevented many posters leaving after being made to feel as if they did not 'fit', any longer.

Some objectors may have made demands that were unrealistic but many have made many more reasonable requests and suggestions as to how all tastes could be accommodated and compromise reached.

It seems now to have reached the stage where even to make the mildest of criticisms is to risk personal attacks and name-calling. To be told in effect if you don't like it then you can leave. I don't wish to change anything, I am, like many others before me, just asking if my view can be accommodated please?

If Catspaw wishes to adopt the title of 'the most important Mudcat person' and speak for "most people", that is perfectly fine by me. All I ask is that he accepts fully the responsibility of that position and sets a good example. For if everyone was to follow the example he currently sets, 'Shorty' (one of the Mudcat servers) would lie down and die under the strain. Or follow the example, of the length of this post.

My requirements are of no more importance than anyone else's requirements but they are fairly modest. Despite always stating them in a polite and reasoned fashion over a period of time both publicly and personally they have never been respected by Catspaw. Who continues to set the questionable EXAMPLE of doing exactly what he wants to do when he wants to do it. In the full knowledge that his EXAMPLE will be followed. When it is followed, he then tends to use this as demonstration that his course of action was correct.

This is what I would like to be accommodated…

1…To TRY and send personal stuff, that is of no interest to anyone other than the poster being addressed, by the use of personal messages or E mail.

2….To TRY and always remember that music is what has drawn Mudcatter's here and to respect the views of those who may not share your particular vision of what The Mudcat is.

3…To TRY and recognise the importance of what is being said rather than WHO is saying it.

It is not necessary to agree with those three points but all I ask is that they can be recognised to be at least as valid as any other consideration. I feel that if an attempt were made to try and follow them, they would also help to rid The Mudcat of the flamers who feed on all this personal stuff being expressed publicly.

Catspaw asks "What are these devices in use that you mention a clique would use?" A good and reasonably typical example is contained in his post to this thread. How many names of other (like-minded) posters were mentioned in that post? How many times was the word 'we' used? Am I included in 'we'? I don't feel so. I am a Mudcatter of long-standing, I just have a different opinion. I may be entirely alone in that opinion but that does not automatically make me outside of anything does it? Or does it?

I am not a flamer. You know who and where to find me. The test of whether The Mudcat is considered a clique or not is how people like me are viewed and treated. If I or people with different but politely expressed views are excluded from anything, or subject to name-calling, because those views are not standard, then it plainly is a clique. This is by using your definition of the word.

What is the object when you take the trouble to post publicly to add nothing to the thread but to say' excellent post ____'?…. Could it be that you hope that _____ will then feel inclined to reciprocate at some future date? Have you such a high opinion of yourself that you feel that the poster should be honoured by the receipt of post containing only a 'Catspaw seal of approval' and that everyone else reading it will be just as thrilled with your words as you are.?

If you only wish to express appreciation, why must it be done publicly? Is it not the difference between just clapping, and standing up and saying in effect 'look at me folks, I am applauding?

It is accepted that public posting of only insults is not OK, why should only posts containing ingratiating public mutual backslapping and compliments be different? I find them equally offensive. The Mudcat is not a general store. And it is not in America only. The whole world is watching your personal exchanges..

I feel that what you have succeeded in creating on the forum (which is mainly about ideas). Is just another chat room (which is about personalities). But the worst aspect of it to me, is that this chat room is a parasite feeding on all the talents, interests, skills, enthusiasms and good intentions of all the contributors drawn to a fine folk/blues music site.

When all the blood has been drawn, and no new (musical) blood will be attracted to replace it, all that will remain is just another chat room. …With the flamers.

Please don't all rush to defend poor old Catspaw, I'm sure he will be perfectly able to defend himself.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: JedMarum
Date: 07 Aug 00 - 07:57 AM

good points, Ella .. and I think you're right about the kids learning respect and appreciation for the music and the envirnoment through positive experience in it.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: Ella who is Sooze
Date: 07 Aug 00 - 04:40 AM

Hi Leenia again...

Well, I have been to sessions in all sorts of different places... yesterday on a boat... the other week outdoors.

I think I would tend to disagree with saying that pubs are not a place for children to be. It does depend, on the type of pub whether it is suitable etc. We take kids to our sessions quite alot and I think it is important to introduce kids to sessions and get them started from an early age. The main factor in making this successful is that the pubs where we take the kids are nice ones, the people are all very nice, and the atmosphere is a good one, not the boozy atmosphere, but a country style bar. Infact alot of people locally don't have babysitter options to be able to go to the sessions and leave the kids (who also play very well) at home. So we bring them out. Admittedly they don't stay all night - but they get to know sessions and are included in the very early part of the sessions.

Perhaps it is just me, but I think that introducing kids to the 'pub' atmosphere gets them used to it from an early age and then they respect things alot more and are less inclined to go mad as soon as they are old enough to go out and party. They have an education about pubs and alcohol etc. But that's probably just me, I am a fairly liberal thinker in that respect.

Having said all that. There are some sessions that I would not take the kids to, knowing that it would not be the right atmosphere for them to be there.

I am all for going to loads of differents places for sessions though.

ta taaa

Ella


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: The Shambles
Date: 07 Aug 00 - 02:22 AM

Such is the God

It is the music that is important. Musicians are just a necessary evil.

Who what or why I am is of little or no consequence. Sometimes what I say might be. If it really matters to you though, you can find out a great deal about me if you look in The Mudcat Songbook or do a name search.

"What else have the Romans done for us?"

Oh and excellent post Mick.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: Big Mick
Date: 07 Aug 00 - 12:16 AM

Right on, Jed.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: JedMarum
Date: 06 Aug 00 - 11:48 PM

... by the way; words of wisdom, Bill D., eloquently expressed!

... and - sorry to all for my typographically challenged post above. I hope I got enough of the letters close enough to their correct position - so that it was intelligable!


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: JedMarum
Date: 06 Aug 00 - 11:42 PM

Well, I ain't a new comer, but I guess I responded like one! That is, I took the original post at face value, and commented accordingly. But probably still approrpiately, even if I was addressing the (alleged) allegory.

That is, I go to my favorite session, and expect to spend a lot of time there ... I know only some of that time will "shine" for me, some of it will be a pain in the as*, and some of it will be OK. So with that in mind, I am willing to take what I can get. If it ain't even worth that to me, I don't go. Ditto goes for my participation here. Frankly, I just don't get all the angst and animosity. Who gives a sh*t? If a restaraunt's bad, and I don't like the ffod - I just don;t go back. I don;t continue to go there and complain aout the food! (if I amy use another analogy) - If I felt frustarted with Mudcat, I wouldn't come back. It's simple.

Sure there are threads that don;t interest. Sure there are times when I feel like my good thoughts don't seem to strike a spark anywhere - sure there are time when I scan the therads, and read a few, and don;t feel like to posting to any - SO WHAT??? I come back, nearly everyday - and nearly everyday something or othere catches my interest (and my interests are almost entirely musical - but it's not a relion to me).

I've never been accused of being part of a clique here, and probably never would be ... but I feel wlecome, and have had great communication with so many folks here .. and even met a few in my limited travels.

I just don't get all the bitching ....


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: Bill D
Date: 06 Aug 00 - 08:39 PM

shambles, I can't think of anyone who approaches issues quite like you do...of all the people here whose 'real' names are known, you impress me as the most enigmatic. We know almost nothing about what you do, who you know, what you laugh at..etc..(not that these are required..just noting that it IS a fairly different approach)

...you move from knowlegable musician to devil's advocate to promulgator of philosophical non-sequitors to outright critic... in a highly unusual way. Many of your posts and ideas are worthy, valuble and insightful, but it is often hard to follow when your point is layered and shaded so many ways.

The one time I said a few things to you on ICQ, you made use of a Monty Python sketch in response to me, with no warning...leaving me a bit non-plussed till you explained..*grin*

The Mudcat is a VERY strange place, with people of highly divergent attitudes, beliefs, tastes... and for want of a better term 'auras', coming together with music serving as basic paste, but with all the idiosyncracies that you might get from a random sampling from the streets of London.

ANY question such as you pose will get responses all over the map...some serious, some angry, some puzzled...and you never seem 'quite' satisfied that we have tried hard enough to plumb the depths of the issue. ...I dunno, maybe I am just tired today...I was about to look up a 'serious' reply to your original question...then I read more and my forehead furrowed and I felt like I'd been tricked...not 'hurt'...just led further than I was in the mood for in an unnecessarily obtuse manner.

*shrug*...I guess I'll just keep on keeping on...you and your attempts to analyze/prod/guide the Mudcat are among the least of my worries about the place...but I do wish that perhaps you could double-space your posts...*grin*...all the better to read bewteen the lines.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: oggie
Date: 06 Aug 00 - 06:43 PM

When I ask for information I do so in good faith, when I respond to a post I also do so in good faith. This I regard as common courtesy and I would hope that others do likewise.

The original post describes a situation I have seen before and my response was given on that basis.. I must admit that I did not connect it to Mudcat (but then I am relatively new here). My comments still hold - if it is not what you want then the time has come to move on BUT Mudcat is different to a session in that you can tune out the chatter and spend time with the music, alone or in the company of friends.

All the best

Steve


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: The Shambles
Date: 06 Aug 00 - 02:50 PM

"The session I described is not entirely allegorical."

When I started to word the thread I realised how close to the Mudcat situation the session was and I needed to tailor the wording very little to additionally reflect this.

I whole-heartedly apologise to anyone who feels that they have been insulted or tricked in to anything.

I would additionally apologise to anyone who feels that I have attempted to manipulate them. I fully admit that I am a complete novice, in that regard.

I have valued all the replies that have been made. It has certainly been very useful to compare the helpful reaction to an unknown (to the posters), session, with the reaction to the idea of the place described being The Mudcat. These have been less than helpful and have concentrated on the personality and motives of the poster, rather than addressing the issue.

Not too surprising that, as it follows a familiar pattern. Is the Mudcat so good that it cannot be any better?

My comments in this thread to The Mudcat in particular, started in my response to Jenny's post.

As I said earlier, I may respond in more detail, when the wagons are ungathered. All I would request is that before you post to 'put the boot in', you read what I have actually said, rather than what I may appeared to, or am accused of having said.

I remain an optimistic pain in the butt.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: Jeri
Date: 06 Aug 00 - 11:29 AM

Honestly, when Shambles posted this, I was a bit depressed over discussions. Last weekend, there was very little music being talked about. To use the session analogy, it wasn't that the music was being drowned out. It was more like the musicians wandered home or went to join in the conversations, and no one was left to sing or play. Thank goodness they came back and started the music again.

If the music content should drop to almost nothing, I will wander off. If Mudcat becomes not much more than non-musical chat, continuous flame wars and garbage (threads), I won't complain about it, because it's obviously what everyone but me wants. Whining about what I loved about this place being gone would only irritate people.

Regarding cliquiness, no way. This is a very friendly place. People don't even have to like folk music to feel welcome here. (May serve to get them interested.) On the other hand, it's funny that I understood Shambles first message was allegorical. I understood it, because I've read quite a few messages from him. If I hadn't, I certainly would have felt "out of the loop" and manipulated.

Jeri, who's just being a cynical pain in the butt this weekend...(as opposed to most of the time, when I'm an optomistic pain in the butt.)


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: Callie
Date: 06 Aug 00 - 10:54 AM

Shambles - I responded to your question in good faith, and now feel manipulated by you. I don't know you or your values, and can't know the sub-texts of your postings. Why not call a spade a spade?

Why not get a life?

I'll think twice before responding to any thread of yours - musical or non.

Callie


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: Sean Belt
Date: 06 Aug 00 - 10:42 AM

Shambles,

What's your deal? I got into this thread thinking you were bringing a serious question about a session you attend and were looking for serious answers. Several people (many of them the very newcomers who you say are feeling excluded,yadda, yadda) were willing to offer their help and advice in an open and honest manner. Then I find out that it's just a cloaked attempt to air your complaints with the Mudcat and to push your own agenda. I have got to say that I find it insulting. If you've got something to say please come right out and say it. Don't go about sucking people into a deception. That really is unfriendly.

As far as your complaints about people posting non-music related messages in this forum; I sympathize. Really. But that's the way this forum has grown. If you don't want to reaad the BS, then skip it. There is still plenty of interesting, stimulating content to be had on the forum in spite of the chatty bits. As far as I can tell, no one is trying to cut anyone out. And no one is conscoiously trying to make your life miserable. Get some perspective. I've not been around here as much as moonchild, kat/katlaughing, Mbo, Rick, or 'spaw. But I don't feel like I'm not welcome to start a thread or to weigh in on a topic. No one is corrupting paradise here. Maybe I'm wrong or just dim. But the flaming seems to have decreased in the last couple of weeks. And the topics in the threads have seemed to get mor interesting overall.

- Sean


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: katlaughing
Date: 06 Aug 00 - 09:47 AM

Sorry about leaving the bold on, phoaks. Just also want to say that I am glad people like Woody Guthrie weren't such purists.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: katlaughing
Date: 06 Aug 00 - 09:14 AM

What better place for folk music, than a General Store...it is a very common and old tradition here in the United States; quite often there was/is no other store available and one did/does go there to buy their instruments, too.

Shambles, I think you are the one being narrow here. Pat is one of the most flexible, open-minded, and caring people I've ever met. I am aware that we both irritate you. I hope you can at least consider what Paul has advised.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: MandolinPaul
Date: 06 Aug 00 - 09:02 AM

I've had some great conversations in music stores. Some of them even dared to be about topics other than music, but they usually strayed back that way; music is the common thread drawing people into that store.

Shambles, I really don't think you're going to change anyone's mind. With all due respect, if you choose to keep harping on the same topic, when you know that you won't change anyone's mind, you become a whiner. Worse yet, your name may eventually become as welcome as The G-man's. I'm not saying you're the same, but the result can be the same.

There is a line in some AA prayer that I've heard in movies and such, that goes something like "Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change".

Please try to do so

... and please continue to enjoy and contribute to the many music-related threads. I believe that your contributions are always appreciated.

Paul.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: The Shambles
Date: 06 Aug 00 - 05:06 AM

Suddenly, as rare things will, it vanished. Robert Browning.

I may very well be in danger of killing what I love by constantly questioning it. I think that this is better however, than the monster that we are all in danger of creating when things go unquestioned.

Catspaw the short answer is no. If you choose to plough on an ignore all polite requests for a little compromise from those who do not share your narrow view, and continue create The Mudcat in your image, then I intend to plough on too.

I will wait for the wagons to be ungathered and then I may respond in more detail. For the issue is NOT that someone has dared to criticise, or who that person may be, but what those criticisms actually are.

The session I described is not entirely allegorical. It is interesting however that Catspaw's analogy is set in a General Store. Would not a MUSIC STORE, not be a more accurate one? Does this not spell out what the problem is?

If all the contributors to The Mudcat were first attracted to a MUSIC STORE, can we not just always recognise that and let that be the only exclusivity required?

To love the sound of the music more than the sound of our own voice???


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: katlaughing
Date: 06 Aug 00 - 12:11 AM

Shambles, you know I have never approved of the flaming and other contentious things which have been directed at you. You also know I consider you to be a fine songwriter.

I get frustrated as hell with anyone who writes in innuendos and insinuations. If someone has a problem they need to lay it out on the table and work it through.

To me, it always feels as though YOU are trying to censor anyone who does not conform to your vision of the Mudcat. I will not allow this, for myself, especially when it comes to expressing my care and affection or appreciation for people whom I have come to consider good friends.

The Mudcat is not a rigidly set up entity; it flows with a myriad of personalities. It seems best to try to enjoy the diversity, rather than always try to stem the flow.

kat


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 05 Aug 00 - 11:45 PM

Hi, Ella. Nice to see your response to my posting asking why they have to meet in a pub. (What are these other people talking about?) Why not have a session in a church basement, community center, private home or the back of the barbershop? We need to challenge the long-standing connection between the booze industry and traditional music.

Also, if you want to get the young involved, a bar is not the place to do it.


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: catspaw49
Date: 05 Aug 00 - 09:12 PM

Shambles........In the 'scenario" you set up a number of pesters suggested that if things didn't change, they would find another session. I don't think that's what you were after. But Dale Rose did seek that option. Dale made fine contributions here and that's without question. When did anyone question the value of his contributions? What Mick did question was Dale's dissatisfaction with a thread that had no interest to him. Dale's only interest in that thread was to say it did not belong here. If you dislike a thread or it has no interest, skip it......or expect some disagreement.

What are these devices in use that you mention a clique would use. I still believe the main criterion needed for a clique is exclusion. From previous threads, you well know that new members do not feel excluded. So what are the devices? Inside jokes? Use of personal nicknames? As soon as new people join in a discussion here we all begin to learn something about them and we often use that info to communicate with them and to make them feel equally included....not excluded. I am well aware that I kid certain people without mercy, Kendall being an obvious example........so what? Does this make Kendall and I cliquish or just friends? Does someone feel excluded by our banter?

And just what is wrong with conducting personal friendships in public? I don't (and never have) get your point on that. Two or three friends are talking and joking at the 'General Store.' Someone else comes in and makes a comment and the others include him in the conversation. If he chooses to walk on by, he has excluded himself. That seems to me to be what happens here. I'm sure that at times comments go unnoticed. Some of mine do and I'm sure some of yours do too, but I don't see where that's a subversive force working at excluding anyone.

Asking if the Mudcat can defend itself versus actually accusing it of having a clique is a study in rhetoric only. If we agree to disagree, so be it. We have been having this discussion for a long time now and you can tell by the responses here that most people don't really see what you see. Please don't say that your scenario was anything but Mudcat....it was. Most didn't pick up on it because they don't see the problem you see.

Jenny did no more than what alison did last week in asking you to not keep harping on this issue. We disagree. Can we stop bringing it back around in a new costume?

Pat


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Subject: RE: Can you help with this session?
From: The Shambles
Date: 05 Aug 00 - 08:14 PM

Jenny

I thought that contributors prided themselves of the fact that we all agree to disagree. It now seems that to have and express a view that is not generally held is not welcome. I do not agree with the narrow definition of what the Forum is. Your community idea is fine but it is only one aspect. It continues to be many things to many people and I dearly hope that it will remain to be that.

The fact that you may personally know many people who contribute is fine and I am very happy for you. The question is whether conducting those personal friendships publicly on the forum is best way to do it. Or that it is generally acceptable to everyone that you do. It is not generally acceptable to me and I would hope that you can respect that view even if you may not agree with it.

The fact that there appears to be the beginning of a recognisable 'party' line, is one that disturbs me a little. I did not say that the Mudcat was a clique. I asked how The Mudcat could be defended from such an accusation? When all the devices that a clique would use are freely used by many contributors.

It will never be possible for all of the contributors to the forum personal friendships or even meet, so I will proceed with the concept of a forum that is open and continues to be open to all views. It would be nice if you could address and answer some of the questions I ask instead of commenting on my right to express a view that you consider may not be universally held.

It is not OK to me that people like Dale Rose are made to feel that their contribution is not valued and they are made to feel that have little choice but to leave.

Yes, this thread is not all the different from the anonymous flamers or guests. This thread is completely different, for many obvious reasons…… You know who I am. I may express a view that you may not agree with but I do so in a polite and reasoned fashion and I will continue to do so. If you cannot or will not address the questions and points made in this thread please ignore it..


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