Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Clarion Music Center in San Francisco Chinatown


DSC03099 clarion music center strings

One afternoon a couple of years ago, my son asked me to take him and a few of his friends to San Francisco Chinatown. Because they were way too cool to be seen with anyone of my generation, I had a couple of hours to shoot some photographs.

I stopped dead in my tracks when I came upon this window:

DSC03095 Clarion Music Center window

I don't play any musical instruments but I dearly wanted to step inside to quell my curiosity. What would I say if they asked me if I needed any assistance? "Yes, I'm in the market for a lion dance costume."?

DSC03096 chinese lion dance  heads

Fortunately, the shopkeeper was already busy with a customer.

DSC03097 Clarion Music Center gong

This girl reminds me so much of my Chinese classmates when I went to school here in The City. Many spent their after-school hours in their family's shops and restaurants where they were safe, within easy reach of homework assistance, and where they could pinch-hit in case their parents had to run errands. I was pretty certain she had no desire to help me, though I'm sure she could have if I asked. She could have told me all about the drums stacked up right behind her...

DSC03106 Clarion Music Center drums

...and which drumsticks would be perfect for each. She could have told me about the rain sticks standing up in the bucket; or at least that's what I think they are.

DSC03104 drumsticks and rainsticks

She could have told me about the Scottish bagpipes or the names of all the different stringed instruments.

DSC03098 Clarion Music Center back wall

DSC03103 Clarion Music Center string instruments

I happen to know that these octagonal two-stringed Chinese violins are called ehrus .

DSC03100 erhu cabinet

The use of python skins for these instruments has been regulated in China since 1988.

DSC03101 erhus

I was pleased that the person behind the cash register, no doubt the proprietor, quietly let me use my camera.

Enjoy a clip from the Travel Channel here:



and, thanks to Ruth, here's a part of the soundtrack of "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon"



If you need any exotic musical instruments, or if you are just curious, be sure to visit the Clarion Music Center in San Francisco's Chinatown.


DSC03107 Clarion Music Center

Monday, May 17, 2010

Macro Monday - Red Anemones


DSC04783 anemone sooc

I'm proud to report that the above image is straight out of the camera and the following two were cropped but otherwise untouched. This is rare for me so I'm doing a little jig this morning.

DSC04786 anemone

DSC04784 anemones

For other Macro Mondays, please visit Lisa at Lisa's Chaos.
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