Boj-Style Ramblings
A Change

I’m not going to say that I’m done with Tumblr, but the fact that Google owns Blogger makes it a bit more attractive to me since 90% of everything else I do on the internet is there, so if you’re interested in my future, rare, posts:  http://bojosborne.blogspot.com

The End of an Era

So, it is not often that I write, but I feel it necessary to pay some sort of homage to one of the founding pioneers of the Bluegrass Industry.  Earl Scruggs died today at the age of eighty-eight and has left behind a legacy that should NEVER be forgotten.

When Earl stepped on to the Opry stage, then located at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tennessee on December 8, 1948 Bluegrass music depending on your view changed or was born.  As far as I’m concerned, it was born.  The same basic building blocks we all use today finally came together that night.  Some pieces had already been there, but Earl finished the puzzle.

If it hadn’t been for Earl my life personally would probably have been quite different.  Most people know the story of Dad listening to the radio for Ernest Tubb one night and heard Earl play Cumberland Gap.  Had it not been for that one instance, the Osborne Brothers may never have happened (along with several other groups).  I could go into Sonny’s part of the story but I won’t simply because it’s fairly obvious what happened since Sonny’s style of playing is a derivative/is influenced by Scruggs style.  If it hadn’t been for Scruggs influencing dad this way, I myself would not have the job I have right now playing with a Bluegrass legend who’s been a member of the Grand Ole Opry for nearly fifty years.  I’m sure anyone else who plays Bluegrass, especially banjo players, have some sort of tribute to Earl as well.

Before I close this out, I feel it necessary to point out that I am in no way trying to take away from Bill Monroe his significant contributions to creating Bluegrass music.  He came to Nashville in 1939 and stayed until the day he passed away in 1996, but Earl played a very strong part in my involvement and luck in the industry, even if in a sort of indirect way.

Goodbye Earl, you’ll be missed!

-March 28, 2012.
Boj

Sonic in the 21st Century…(Decade 2)

It should be significantly noted that I wrote this at 5:35 in the morning, which makes it a candidate for mindless rambling.  Thou hast been warned!

I feel compelled to write this morning about an old pal of mine I’ve known since Kindergarten.  He’s blue, he’s got an attitude, and runs insanely fast.  That’s right, none other than Sonic the Hedgehog.  He’s been through quite a few ups and downs for the last ten years of his life, which is exactly half of his existence.  2011 is the twenty year anniversary for the blue blur, and it’s been great for me!

I’ve been out of the video game industry since about 2006 or 2007, whenever the current set of consoles came out.  Video game companies quit making games and characters I enjoyed a long time before that.  Quite literally all I did for years was keep a console for three things:  Mario, Sonic, and Zelda.  Mario hasn’t been without his faults and neither has Zelda. My favorite of the three, Sonic if you haven’t figured that one out yet, hit rough water back when Sonic Heroes came out.  The game was alright, but it severely lacked the pizzazz that everything prior to that had.  His next game, Sonic 2006 as it is referred to was horrible at best.  And not to mention the decent but for some reason unmemorable to me Sonic Advance and Sonic Rush series.  It was at this time I decided enough was enough.  I got out of video games save for two minute returns when Mario Galaxy the Original and Twilight Princess came out.  Sonic had disappointed me too many times, to the point that I was never going to buy another one unless it just got absolutely stellar reviews, which never happened.  Two Wii games came and went, along with Sonic Unleashed and Sonic Colors, despite the latter getting really good reviews.

However, there was a spark that caught my eye prior to Sonic Colors last year and that was Sonic 4.  While it still has many flaws, it was quite honestly the best Sonic game I played since Sonic Adventure 2.  It was the best step in the right direction Sega could have taken.  This year they’ve blown me away with Sonic Generations though.  They actually made a decent major release Sonic game complete with extremely accurate classic game play, and a “fixed” modern game play mode.  I say “fixed” because even since Sonic Adventure 1 the games have been fairly broken.  Not so much now, but back in the day I used to like to do crazy shit in video games.  I never could actually push through level objects until Sonic Adventure.  Even Mario 64 didn’t fail.  So far the modern play in Sonic Gens hasn’t broken but one time, and I will admit, it should have with what I was trying to do!

To top all of this news out it’s great to see a game that’s been neglected by Sega for quite some time getting a very exciting makeover.  Sonic CD is coming to every system ever (save Nintendo) and it’s being remade with all sorts of extras and goodies.  I may make a post about it after it comes out on PSN.  I’ve not been this exciting about gaming since 2006, but it’s definitely nice to see ONE of my childhood memories making a comeback that he richly deserves.  I only hope Sega can continue on this path.  Who knows, maybe one day the world will right itself and Sega will enter the console wars once again with vengeance.  (Don’t hold your breath!)

greatpropheteric:

I’ll go out on a limb and assume at least 90% of the people who read this first arbitary post breaking the ground to this tumblr page you have somehow found have at some point visited the popular web comic site xkcd. Just so we are all on the same page a few months back this comic,

Nintendo’s famous plumber was dead before you ever put Super Mario Bros into your NES.

Another video game post

This is a bit late, but earlier this week the Supreme Court finally ruled that video games are indeed a form art! Thank God! Now when I hear about pricks like Jack Thompson I can ignore his sorry ass and make fun of him for trying to be a communist! Good day!

Tablets…they’re coming! (They’re already here moron!) ….So they are!

imageSo, I’ve come to notice, especially since I own one now, that the laptop’s days are indeed numbered. I’ve had an iPad now for about a week, and I’m surprised at the sheer amount of computing it can really do. There are only a couple things that it can’t do that my laptop can, and most of it could be solved with a simple OS update which is coming soon. The biggest problem is the lack of Flash, but like I said, a simple OS update should be able to fix that.

The first and foremost thing I noticed when I pulled this thing out of it’s box and started using it, was that I felt like I had finally arrived to the 21st century that’s been portrayed to us since we were kids, and the small child that still lurks inside my head was jumping giddily at the idea. Does that help the tablet shove the laptop out of its spot in mobile computing? Of course not! It’s just damn cool!

The real place this thing shines at right now for me is the ability to take care of my social networking needs. I play in a bluegrass band. It was formerly the Osborne Brothers, the group that had the original recording of Rocky Top, and several other hits and now standards in Bluegrass music. It’s now Bobby Osborne & the Rocky Top X-Press as Sonny retired. Bobby just happens to be my dad, and since his start into the music business on his own back in 2005, I’ve managed his web presence, however poorly I may or may not be doing. I can (or he can in some instances) post to his website important news on the go, post to his Facebook and Twitter important information that fans want to know, such as new CD releases or tour date information and all things of this nature. Not to mention the business side of being able to surf the internet searching for dates for both his band an my band, emailing (or calling) the promoter to book the date, send him a contract and have the date booked. And that’s only the beginning. There are far greater things that I can imagine I can do with iPad, I just haven’t figured out how yet! For the record, I do not have a 3G iPad. My internet comes through my Android phone when I’m out on the road or doing my Gatlinburg-Street gig over the summer.

I’m not clear on what the hardware of an iPad is, and I haven’t really been clear on hardware since 2008 because I entered into solitude for three years and when I came back out in 2010 there were all kinds of new terms that I didn’t know. What I do know is that it has a dual core processor, and I know that’s impressive considering how small of a package the iPad is, on top of the fact that it provides ten hours of battery life. I only had to charge it once this week in Gatlinburg.

I’m looking forward to see what tablets do here in the next couple years, because I truly think the laptop is done. Five or six years at max. Perhaps the future we and our parents were promised as children isn’t as far off as we thought!

WHERE WOULD YOU MOST LIKE TO VISIT ON YOUR PLANET?

Japan.  I’ve been wanting to go since I was about fourteen.  I’ve come close a couple times, but I never can seem to get over the final hump.  :(

P.S.

I want a Tumblr app for iPad. This whole browser thing is outdated as hell.

Video Games: Now and Then

Usually if you’ve heard me complain about the situation of video games I’m bashing congress for trying to regulate it. We don’t need the government regulating a form of entertainment/art/whatever you may consider it, we have the ESRB for that. That’s not pertinent to this post though. The current is the thing about Nintendo of America’s recent casting off to the side the request of several fans of three particular games that Nintendo of Europe are going to release/have a a part of/something.

I’ve long been anti NoA. In fact, the only American game company I’m on record anywhere to current memory of praising is Sega of America because they highly influenced the Sonic the Hedgehog that I several other ’90s children that I’m friends with came to know and love. NoA however has kinda shocked me. Square Enix, formerly known as Squaresoft for those of you under a rock (or not in the know), the company known famously for the Final Fantasy games have released quite a few successful series. The Chrono Series is probably the second biggest of their franchises, and is certainly one of my favorites, and it’s hard to get me to like an RPG. Another series is the Seiken Densetsu series. There were three games, all three of which were absolutely magnificent. Unfortunately, I only got to play the second game because it was the only one released in the Americas under the title Secret of Mana. If there was a game to be my absolute favorite RPG of all time that would be it.

"Boj, how does any of this tie in with NoA ignoring fans?" I’ll tell you. As I recall from my twenty-four years worth of memories (which is foggy at best at 4:00 AM), NoA was highly opposed to releasing Secret of Mana back in the ’90s because American gamers were not very fond of RPGs (Roll Playing Games for those of you wondering…do a Google). That by and large may be true of a lot of us, but there is a large click of gamers that love them, both then and now. Sure enough, Secret of Mana was a huge game here in the Western World. Clearly it didn’t sway NoA to putting out the previous game or the game afterwards.

That’s not the only time NoA screwed us out of good games. The Super Mario Brothers 2 for the NES that we all know and love (it’s really a good game) is not the true Super Mario Brothers 2. The true one was simply the original game but excruciatingly harder and more detailed graphics. We did not get the game because it was thoguht that American gamers wouldn’t like it because it was so hard, which actually may have been true. If you’ve played Super Mario Brothers the Lost Levels, then you’ve played what I consider the true Mario Brothers 2 so you know what I’m referring to. And as a slight disclaimer, that decision may have come from Nintendo of Japan (NoJ) as opposed to NoA.

So, why are they doing it again? Who knows. I’ve personally always believed Reggie Fils-Aime to be somewhat of an idiot, but I don’t know the guy so that’s not my call to make. I’m also not involved in the gaming industry in any way other than a consumer, and not so much of that these days. As it has been made known to me by a close friend of mine, there has been an outcry pre-denial of these three games, and a much larger one post. Specifically, in the thousands. If you’ve got that big of a demand for a game, there’s no reason for you to not put it out, especially not when you could make a few extra bucks off of it. Nintendo needs to wake up anyway. Since the Nintendo 64 they’ve been slowly falling behind the pack. They missed CD based games by a whole generation because they were too stubborn to upgrade their technology, and they’ve sacrificed power on their last two major consoles in favor of…whatever. Nintendo hasn’t impressed me in a long time other than with their software titles. Hopefully WiiU will do something big. Hopefully NoA will pull their heads out of their asses. Only time will tell, but they shouldn’t ignore their fans. Beware Mario, Link, Samus…you haven’t suffered his fate yet, but Sega ignored their fans for the last six or so years and look what happened to Sonic…

DISCLAIMER: This post is highly opinion based at 4:20 AM! I cannot be held accountable for my subconsciousness’s actions!