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fascinating fun Memoir poems

A Truly Widespread Orchestra

Back in March of this year, about a week after I went into self-isolation from C19, like many, I was feeling pretty low, lost and lethargic, forcing myself into routines so that I didn’t lose my mind in a vast field of worry. But even though I was flying solo on this journey, I knew wasn’t actually alone. While doing mundane tasks like household chores and sorting of things that I’d put on The Wayside, I realized that so many of the people I love (along with those I hardly know, but who are very lovely) were probably doing the exact same things and quite possibly at the exact same time. I often imagine how many people might be laughing while I am laughing, crying while I am crying, eating toast at the precise moment I am eating toast. The great potential for this sort of banal synchronicity fascinates me. So I jotted down a quick poem and called it “Widespread Orchestra,” a phrase I’d had rolling around like a fat marble in my head for the better part of decade. The poem got a good response from folks, especially from my friend Noah Luna, composer and fellow San Joser, who took the poem and gave it a sound I am incapable of formulating or performing. Over the last several months, he’s built a beautiful song out of my words, which renders me speechless every time I see and hear it. Check it out for yourself.

Noah had asked me sometime in late spring if he could play with it. I love poetry over music, so I was emphatic in my affirmation. Noah asked world class cellist Joshua Roman to play the composition he had written for cello. Then they both recruited a number of vocalists from all over (I’d like to say the world, but I don’t actually know where they’re all located) to record themselves singing and to capture it on video. Through the awesome support of Town Hall Seattle, where Joshua is the current Artist in Residence, he and Noah were able to stitch together all of the vocal tracks and footage to make what you see and hear in the video.

We had a video debut of the song over Zoom the other day a good number of the vocalists joined us. Many of them commented on how it was the first time they had to listen to themselves sing solo for a chorus. Noah commented that is was the first time he’d ever heard every voice in a chorus individually as he put the track together. Very fascinating work.

They made a widespread “orchestra” and turned my little poem into a much, much bigger song. My mind is blown and I cannot thank them enough.

Many, many thanks and kudos to Noah Luna and Joshua Roman for their incredible, remarkable work. Huge thanks to the vocalists who participated in this strange and beautiful endeavor. Major thanks and gratitude to the folks at Town Hall Seattle for their part in making this happen.

Wow.

Noah and I are already talking about future projects. Stay tuned.

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Dog’s Breakfast Episode 3.1 – Mighty Mike McGee and The Population Drops

I did and interview while getting my hair done while I was on tour in Vancouver last month! Two smarty pants talking–it’s a good listen.

Our barbers are the sweetly hellish musical duo Jerk In The Can.

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POEM: Things One Should NOT Do After A Drunken Dance Party

Things One Should NOT Do After A Drunken Dance Party
an old list poem by Mighty Mike McGee

1a: Drive an automobile or operate heavy machinery.

1b. Text message your ex to let her know you saw her new relationship status on Facebook and it makes sense why she’s ignoring you when you guys were doing great communicating a few weeks earlier.

2. Agree to run for president or city council. Mayoralship is acceptable when inebriated.

3. Miss people who don’t love you.

4. Accept loneliness as your “lot in life.”

5. Miss women who do love you, but live across world.

6. Froget to drink water.

7. Fall for lady poets.

8. Keep wanting to dance at 4 in them morning.

9. Write a list poem.

10. Fanta Size about making out with mouths/vulvas.

11. stop dreamig of getting a mini 2 feet tall girafe as pet,/ Dont EVER stop!

12. dgliytyon 23 elf becuse yo

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Hey, NORTH BEAST: I’m catching a red-eye to Boston tonight. Check out my show at Berklee College tomorrow. Then onto shows and friends in Manchester, Worcester and New York City.

http://www.mikemcgee.net/tour

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“Mighty” Mike McGee – Cassiopeia & Orion Lead Me Home (feat. Hannah Hayes on accordion)

“Mighty” Mike McGee on the IndieFeed Performance Poetry Channel. Show number 1442.

Check out the direct link here.

From the digital album Harmony. Listen and download it here.

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poems

POEM: Under The Streetlight

“I sat under a streetlight and realized that there is darkness to protect us from things we should not see. The night is ugly so the day can be beautiful.” @mightymikemcgeek an old poem of mine called Streetlight.

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It’s 11am! Rise and Shine! There Might Be Some Worms Left!

Me LITERALLY getting out of bed this morning. Like a champ!

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https://popplers5.bandcamp.com/download/track?enc=mp3-128&fsig=229027c53cdabeed0ef8c05f125f348d&id=3221486043&nl=1&stream=1&ts=1486421771.0?plead=please-dont-download-this-or-our-lawyers-wont-let-us-host-audio
http://bandcamp.com/EmbeddedPlayer/size=medium/bgcol=ffffff/linkcol=0687f5/notracklist=true/transparent=true/track=3221486043/

Featuring the banjo stylings of Molly Schermer. From my album Harmony! It’s pretty sweet, my friends. Give it listen here.

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Watch my story “The Birds and the Bees” on YouTube

When A Father Faces The Abyss, Only Magic Can Save Him. From NPR’s Snap Judgment

Watch my story “The Birds and the Bees” on YouTube

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https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/168472776/stream?client_id=3cQaPshpEeLqMsNFAUw1Q?plead=please-dont-download-this-or-our-lawyers-wont-let-us-host-audio

Here’s me telling the story of the time I learned about the birds and the bees. From NPR’s Snap Judgment, live at the Nourse Theater in San Francisco, August 2014.