Category Archives: Music

Argentine folk music at La Casona del Molino

The singer gestures with his hands, telling some story that requires giving directions within his anecdote. His eyes have a slight haze over them–what some would call ojos tristes, which doesn’t necessarily mean sad eyes, but rather eyes of a drunk person.

He’s been sipping multiple glasses of wine throughout his performance. His guitarist, meanwhile, has been drinking water the whole time. Regardless of the beverages, they play for several hours. The crowded room sings back at them Argentine folk songs word for word. Both the guitarist and singer belt their songs in warm tonal voices.

Eventually, an older man joins them up front for several songs. He immediately receives recognition from the crowd. It’s La Casona del Molino, where local musicians band together, bringing their instruments for impromptu folk-jam sing-along sessions throughout the night, lasting early into the morning.


Live from Thelonious Jazz Club, Part II

Here is the second video from my evening at Thelonious Jazz Club. To see the background info on this video, please read about and watch the first video here.

The musicians are:
Julio Laks, piano
Agustin Moya, saxophone
Milton Russel, bass
Cristóbal Massis, drums

Shot with Canon PowerShot G12 and Nikon D3100. Audio recorded with Marantz PMD620. Recorded on May 5, 2012. Edited in Final Cut Pro 7 on May 6, 2012. Produced by Nathan Frandino

Live from Thelonious Jazz Club

Back in March I went to Thelonious Jazz Club in Bellavista with my roommate, Mateo. Mateo is a musician and is back in Germany preparing for an entrance exam to a keyboard technician program (I think). He and I finally had the opportunity to hit up Thelonious and the place was awesome. Excellent music. Great atmosphere. Not too cold, not too warm. Not overpriced. There was just a 2,000 CLP ($4 USD) cover charge plus a drink. That night I met Jenn Jade Ledesna, a jazz singer from the Bronx who was scouting musicians for a series of shows to be played here in Santiago during the month of April. One of the musicians performing that night was Chilean saxophonist Agustin Moya.

I got to see Jenn play with Agustin at the Municipal Theater of Las Condes, and I decided to reach out to Agustin about a potential interview. Fast forward to Saturday, May 5. I went to Thelonious to record some video and audio from a performance.

I showed up with plenty of time in advance, which worked perfectly. I got a seat up front with time and space to set up. I had never really recorded live music before. So this was definitely a lesson in improvisation, one-man banding and live sound.

I used a friend’s Nikon D3100 to shoot video. It was fairly easy to use. I set it up on a tripod and I definitely did not frame the shot correctly. You’ll see in the video. I didn’t fix it until the end of this one particular song. I also did not know how to change the length of time that you can leave it on record (or if that is possible to begin with). The camera was only set to 10 minutes. Luckily, I made it back to my spot (I was shooting with a second camera from the floor) before the camera shut off. You’ll see though. It’s the exact same shot, which is a major no-no.

I also did not record much of the piano player, which I wish I would have done. I didn’t exactly come in with a major plan or shot list (another no-no). I came in only with the idea of getting footage of the saxophonist (assuming and hoping there will be an interview).

The audio was all synced manually. I was able to use the Nikon audio and Marantz 620PMD audio for the main sync. I used the Canon for the shorter close-up shots, which was the trickier and more time-consuming audio to sync. I did buy Plural Eyes finally, but it wasn’t available to me during the making of this particular video. Hah! I did record the next song in the set and I took more shots, if I remember correctly, so I’ll get to use Plural Eyes for the next video and hopefully it’ll come out a little better.

One of the main reasons for doing this was simply to get back into video. I haven’t touched Final Cut since being in Chile. Unfortunately, due to the job, I haven’t needed to or had the opportunity to do so. This was merely a fun exercise in trying to get back into a habit of shooting and editing. I certainly had fun and I know where I made my mistakes and where I can improve.

Shot with Canon PowerShot G12 and Nikon D3100. Audio recorded with Marantz PMD620. Recorded on May 5, 2012. Edited in Final Cut Pro 7 on May 6, 2012. Produced by Nathan Frandino

Take Care, New York

Three weeks after finishing grad school, I packed up everything I owned. I sold my furniture. I gave bags of clothes to Goodwill. I threw away tons of junk. I left Brooklyn for Santiago, Chile.

While I’m excited about my move and my future here in South America, I cannot help but miss all the wonderful friends and memories that I had during my year and a half in New York City. A year and a half is in no way a long time, but it was still a terrific experience with people I’ll never forget.

Music: Explosions in the Sky “Last Known Surroundings” from the 2011 album “Take Care, Take Care, Take Care”

Shot and Produced by Nathan Frandino

How An Interview Should End

I spent this afternoon interviewing Thomas Porter of Porter Cycles, a custom bike design shop in Bushwick, Brooklyn, for a feature story that I’m writing about the custom-bike culture. We started just straight shooting at Brooklyn Fire Proof, chatting it up about New York, biking, music and all the good stuff that makes life great.

I have to admit the interview was one of the better interviews I’ve ever had. It didn’t even feel like an interview–just real honest conversation.

Plus, we had the pleasure of sitting in on an impromptu jam. Not sure who the musicians were or what the names are, but it was incredible!


Ryan Fetter and Atlanta’s musical incest

With five bands, Ryan Fetter stays pretty busy. It’s easy, he says, when there are so many musical opportunities coming out of Atlanta. Whether it’s punk rock or surf rock, there’s likely a group of musicians willing to put their chemistry to the test for the sake of making music.

Fetter’s done just that. Now on tour with his band, Mermaids, Fetter passed through Brooklyn and played Don Pedro on Nov. 28 before driving back south.